Starting a business can be terrifying. Weighing the pros and cons, the risks, and other considerations can be so overwhelming that often promising entrepreneurs stop before they even start. We asked some phenomenal entrepreneurs about their thought process behind starting their own businesses. Our hope is that by making the thought-process less intimidating we can help more folks think through whether they should take an entrepreneurial leap.

Anthony Carey | Founder & CEO of Core-Tex Reactive Training

My motto as a business owner and trainer is: “Movement is life. We make movement better. We make life better.” Many people have mostly sedentary jobs, leading to chronic pain and predisposition to injury. I created Core-Tex to help people improve their well-being, prevent pain and injury and overall, feel their best. Read more>>

Vanessa Karel | Founder CEO of Greether: Helping women travel safer

I couldn’t find a service that did what my business does: Helping women travel safer. I needed a solution to this problem so this began out of a personal need, it wasn’t an overnight decision, I consider this more of a gradual process in which I began with a problem, looked for a solution: couldn’t find it and then looked further to find out if I was alone in having this problem and most importantly if people would pay for a solution. Read more>>

Aundrea Uriarte | Makeup Artist & Future Master Esthetician

The best way I can describe my thought process on starting my own business was: “I’m scared, intimidated, don’t have all the answers, and don’t quite see the full picture but I’m going to do it anyway.” Sometimes, you’re the only one stunting your own growth and standing in the way of your own success. Once I realized that, I pushed my own doubts and fears out of the way and forced myself to trust the process. Read more>>

Rachel Middleton | Owner of Kismet Studio & Untamed Boudoir

I’ve never been good at working for someone else, I decided i wanted to work for myself so i could create my own schedule and be able to travel more. I also was in a engineering based job and i wanted to be more creative. and wanted to grow other forms of income off of my main business. I wanted to make a sustainable business while making a difference to others but also loving my job. Read more>>

Julie Schabel | Screen printer, artist, and educator

It just kind of happened. I started learning the process of screen printing at an internship in high school. I kept printing in college and started printing for my friends businesses and bands. I worked at different shops in nyc and chicago to learn the business. When I moved back to cleveland I didn’t have access to a shop so I started setting up my own shop which became Wave Space. Read more>>

Mellisa Essenburg | Ceramic Artist & Speech-Language Pathologist

It wasn’t too complicated initially. I had taken some jewelry making classes as a hobby and started having people ask if I could make them things. It naturally evolved into an Etsy shop, then a website. I stumbled across some lovely ceramic pendants at a bead and gem show and was immediately drawn to them. After some searching I discovered a small online community of ceramic bead and pendant artists who were incredibly generous with information which allowed me to jump into making beads and pendants for my jewelry designs. Read more>>

Angelic Audea | Passionate Baker & Registered Dental Assistant

Honestly, I never planned on starting my own business. It started originally from just bringing goodies to work for special occasions from there I had a very small following from my coworkers. They would eventually ask me to bake them all sorts of desserts such as fruit tarts and cheesecake bites. I would post it on Instagram then more friends would request what I made so that is what started my little business called NomNom Goodies. Growing up, Read more>>

Christopher McKenzie | Engineer

I felt an obligation to help ameliorate the chaotic climate we are headed towards and had a vision of what the future will have to look like. I believe I can help to make that necessary future more real sooner and help stave off the most dire potential consequences. Read more>>

Peaches Aguirre | Entrepreneur and Baker, Cravings by Peaches

I have been a culinary enthusiast since I was a kid. Having been around the kitchen at a young age brought about my appetite for cooking delectable meals and baking delightful desserts. I have worked for more than 15 years in the corporate setting with combined experiences in hospitality sales, marketing, and events management. Read more>>

Brian Coleman | Entrepreneur & Visionary

I have always desired full autonomy to develop and create at my own pace. There are limitations when you are working for someone else or building a brand that you don’t own. I wanted to challenge myself when I opened my first business and it took me totally out of my comfort zone but it grew me in ways I didn’t know that I needed. I was 25 years old when I started my first business and my intention was to make as much money as I could and develop a great brand. Read more>>

Sid Johnson | Owner Desert Oasis Comics

I’ve always worked in the corporate world as a Director of Human Resources. Long Hours (good pay), high stress, no time off and low happiness. Even though I was good at what I did it was mostly unsatisfying with all my hard work going to help others being successful. I took a couple of years off at age 50 and realized I wanted to do something fun and meaningful to me and I’ve always wanted to own a comic books store. So I crunched the numbers – looked for a good location in a less hectic city that still had great weather and next thing you know I was opening up my first business Desert Oasis Comics. Read more>>

Sandy Vuong Tobin | Owner Operator

Honestly it was a family thought process. My dad has owned restaurants in San Diego for years. He saw a great opportunity in Dumpling Inn and brought the idea to me and my sister. We bought the restaurant together and it has brought our family closer together. We work together daily and even though we hit rough patches it has made our bond stronger. Read more>>

Margaux Rodrigues | Photographer

The two main thoughts who led me starting my own business were passion and freedom. I am a passionate, obsessional person since childhood and I couldn’t conceive to have one job but something I was passionate about, and photography is above all the things that make me vibrate. Read more>>

Virgil Simpelo | Entertainer & Sole Proprietor

Initially, I didn’t think about the business end of things because I just wanted to perform and represent San Diego in the best possible way when the music of the Smiths or Morrissey was concerned. Being a business had neve crossed my mind, since most artists or musicians take a humanistic approach to what they do because it’s their guts on the line. Read more>>

Michael O. | Creator, Sabor on the Bay

Being a music lover and having an entrepreneurial spirit, I saw the lack of events for Latinos in the San Diego area. I merged Latin music with a Boat Party experience in 2009 in San Diego and eventually grew it to other cities of the United States like Chicago, Los Angeles and San Francisco. I simply wanted to spread the sound of Latin music to thousands of others. Read more>>

Jamie/ Natalie Cole/ Martinez | Co-Founder of Waisted Body Bar/Body Sculpting Specialist/LVN

We both were working in an environment where there was no true room for growth. We both aspired and had visions of doing more with our skillset. We felt that we owed it to ourselves to take a chance on “US” and put our thoughts into action. We have been friends/family and coworkers for almost two decades. We both were familiar with each other’s work ethic and most importantly, we both shared similar interests. We wanted to show not only ourselves that we could do it, but also wanted to show our kids. Read more>>

Carina Cano | Balloon Artist

My thoughts when getting Baby of The Party rolling was buying my own freedom. Being able to afford the family time and luxuries of not missing a single milestone as my daughter continued to grow. As a first time mom, raised by a single immigrant mother who worked all day everyday, I knew that the best I could offer my daughter was myself and my time. Read more>>

Dahlia Maman | Parent Coach

I never thought I would actually start my own business, it kind of just happened. I earned my parenting coaching certification and I wasn’t sure what I would do with it. I knew I wanted to help parents but I actually always that more in a school setting. When I realized that schools don’t really work with parent coaches I decided to start promoting my own work and thats how my business started. I felt there was a need for parent coaching. Read more>>

Steven Castañon | Creator & Owner of ELFOKO

I started by business in 2019-2020 during the beginning of the pandemic while I had a lot of alone time. My thought process was how can you use this idea and make it better than what it already is. Read more>>

Lori Hutchison | Photographer and Digital Artist

I want to offer creative and unique images for everyone, from families, actors, models, and musicians/bands too fine art. Having my own business allows me to be as versatile as I want, it gives me creative freedom. Read more>>

Britt Secrest | Salon Owner & Hair Therapist

Isn’t it funny how one day you find yourself doing something you swore you’d never do? I always loved my craft and what I do but I never thought I’d take on the risk of owning and operating a 7 chair salon in the heart of San Diego! I found myself wondering what if? Why not start looking at potential spaces and if one feels right you just go for it? Read more>>

Bryssa Wisnewski | Luxury Event Planner

Starting my own business came from wanting to help others. I realized event planning could be a great business when I was planning my own wedding. The amount of stress that goes into planning and making sure everything is in order and taken care of is a FULL TIME job. So as a planner, I hired my own wedding planner and it was the best thing I did. It made my wedding planning process easy and enjoyable. So I wanted to give that to other brides so are going through the same thing! Read more>>

Jennifer Shrestha | Equine Photographer

You know it’s funny thinking back upon starting my business. Honestly, I knew I loved horses and that they were a large part of my life. They were the thing that got me up in the mornings and helped me sleep at night. Horses were a world I fully understood and felt comfortable in since childhood. I remember there was one evening where I was lying on my bed feeling pretty down about my career and my future, so I hopped on social media (which I was not heavily a part of then), and found a horse photograph that really soothed my soul. I looked at it and I understood it immediately. Read more>>

Isaac Ice | Actor podcast host

When I finally decided to start up my “brand” I surrounded myself with like minded people. I had the support or family and friends. Honestly I have to say someone that I learned from a lot is Tim Amoroso. He was the 1st person to push me to limits and learn the business. I don’t know exactly where I would be without his guidance. Read more>>