We reached out to some of our favorite entrepreneurs and asked them to think back and tell us about how they decided to start a business. Check out their responses below.

Michelle Kenney M.Ed | Parent Coach, Podcast Host and recovering yeller, control freak and perfectionist

Peace and Parenting was born out of the idea that we all need and deserve help and support around our parenting. Before I had my first child I thought parenting would come naturally to me. Having been a former teacher and High School Counselor with a Master’s Degree in Education and a successful professional who loved her students, I assumed this would make me a shoe-in as a mom. Read more>>

Brittney Buccat | Owner and Founder of Wild Rina

Having my own business has always felt like an innate decision for me. I’ve always been dreaming of having a business, I just didn’t know when or how it would come to life. I made the choice to launch my own business right after I graduated from college. Read more>>

Devan Ibiza | Music Producer & DJ

At a young age, I began to DJ. I was getting booked for a bunch of gigs and being introduced into the music industry. Around this time is when I started my music career, thus starting my own brand, myself. Devan Ibiza. It was all organic. Read more>>

Rosaelena Robledo | Rose

Let me paint a picture. May 2020 few months into a pandemic and quarantine. Very minimal work. Pregnant with baby number two. The thought process came about asking myself how do I go about creating a hobby for myself that will profit overtime? Pregnant me was always craving acai bowls but not just any acai bowls. Their was a specific location, except it was permanently closed. Read more>>

Valerie Ojeda | Lead singer of Anthem Road Cover Band

Isn’t it interesting how there are times in our lives when we see other people accomplishing amazing things we’ve always wanted to do, but we imagine how we would do things differently? We say, “Wow! I would really love to do that, but I would change so many things. Read more>>

Jenny Silbert | Master Scavenger, Rewilder

I’ve always had a passion for dumpster diving, and I started Rewilder when I got to dig through some really big trash and found beauty. My background is in architecture – I have a MA from Yale, and my previous career was in technology and materials. I was teaching at Art Center, researching materials for student use, when I found a filter cloth from Miller Coors that’s thrown away at the massive scale of 2 tons every 3 days. It’s durable and beautiful. Read more>> 

Jessica Bruny | Wellness Entrepreneur & Mental Wellness Activist

When it comes to the critical thought process behind my business, I have always had guidance with the 3P’s: prayer, pen and paper. Through brainstorming I was able to articulate the steps necessary to move forward in my business. Over time I finally knew it was about developing Godfidence to show up in these rooms as a business owner. Read more>> 

Joseph Arujo | Content Creator & Mental Health Advocate

I started my storytime series during the pandemic when I noticed a lot of people my age struggling with anxiety and depression after being locked indoors for many months. One night, I decided to go LIVE on social media, reading stories to my viewers, and it became an instant hit! Over the next few months, I grew to over 800,000 followers and 20,000-80,000 people joining my nightly streams. I’m incredibly thankful for the platform my viewers provided me so that I can continue making an impact on my community. Read more>>

Sierra Ramsey | Makeup Artist

The thought process behind starting Forever Vanity Makeup began with me wanting to find multiple ways to generate income that correlated with freelance makeup artistry. Read more>>

Beto Irigoyen | Visual Artist and Director for Animation Projects

Me and my team wanted a space where we could recognize ourselves as a laboratory to explore and have fun with all the experience we have gained over years of experience. Read more>>

Liz Roberta | Hay House Author & Award Winning Spiritual Coach

I never decided to start my own business. For me, it was just something that had to happen. My journey to becoming an entrepreneur in the spiritual and wellness space is documented in my book, Living In Tune, because I gradually realised over time that I was massively living “out of tune” in my corporate life and had to make a big change. Read more>>

Carlton Dossou | Founder of the nonprofit We Got Next LA

Throughout my four years at Loyola Marymount University, I was an Entrepreneurship major. I spent my time inside and outside of class trying to think of a business that I wanted to start. I spent my time thinking of all the ideas that would make me as rich as Bill Gates or Jeff Bezos. However, I couldn’t think of anything that I felt I wanted to do for the rest of my life. So I started thinking about what exactly I wanted to do. I realized money wasn’t something that made me go. I wanted to make a change. Read more>>

Dr. Lauren Brim | Founder of Bodywork for Babies International

For me, it’s not a thought, it’s a drive. I have something to offer and I create that offering to meet a need I see in the world. I am incredibly proud of what we’ve built at Bodywork for Babies International. It is incredibly challenging for new parents to find practitioners trained to work with babies, and our directory is solving that problem. Read more>>

Ankita Bhardwaj | CEO/Creative Director

Since I was a young kid I always wanted to be an entrepreneur. I started my own web-development business when I was a teenager and since then design intrigued me! Design and Fashion art threads were weaved into my life yarn from even before I was born as I grew around my parents’ clothing factory in India. Read more>>

Danté Knows | Musician

I Knew everything i needed and wanted & it couldn’t be achieved by working for someone else. My father taught me happiness is amongst passion so if what i was doing didn’t align with that value, I wouldn’t be capable of pursuing it. Read more>>

Heather Bailey | Tattoo Artist and Owner of Holy Union Tattoo

As I was planning my move to Los Angeles from San Francisco, I was traveling down each month to do guest spots at different tattoo shops in LA. I found that I didn’t really love any one shop but I decided that I would put time in at one or two shops with the intent of opening up a space that would make me happy. Read more>>

Karina Djalilova | Writer & Videographer

Reaching financial freedom is the goal behind every business owner. For me, starting a business was not a question, but a necessity as I began to evolve my filming and editing skills into social media and marketing. Everyone who dreams of generational wealth and success should consider starting a business, especially if your skills and talents create a steady income or side hustle for you. Read more>>

Cait Khosla | Founder of Botany Box & Succulent Expert

Botany Box was created for two kinds of people: those who were already plant lovers, and curious plant goers. We wanted everyone to easily order online & care for their own collection of plants seamlessly and effectively. When I moved to NYC back in 2017, the idea for Botany Box really took off. Read more>>

Kae Amar | artist

Hi Kae, what was your thought process behind starting your own business?
The business started me before I started the business honestly. Modeling came as a true life career fulfillment type of thing for me I threw myself into an actual dream of mine instead of settling for a more typical career and next thing you know! When you stay true to your heart, abundance comes naturally because you living in that higher vibe, you living in your purpose and that brings the money flow, what gets the business booming you feel me ! Read more>>

 Kim Steward | Family Photographer

Honestly my intentions were to just take nice family pictures of my kids. Then other people asked if I’d take their photos too. When they started offering me money to do it I knew then that this is a business. I can get paid for something I love to do! Read more>>

Gigi Harville | CEO/Founder

Helping small businesses and kids learn how to build brands and businesses using content and brand strategies. The Paul Harville Group is a Digital Marketing and Management company in Los Angeles. We manage content creators and music artists as well as consulting. We help with content and brand strategies for creators and artists and digital marketing for small businesses. Read more>> 

Adam Bremen | Founder of CanDo makers of Keto Krisp

From an early age, my parents instilled in me that life is about what I CAN DO, not what I can’t do. At 42, I found myself overweight and uncomfortable, so I decided it was time to make a change. Read more>>

Ronit Falevitch | Licensed esthetician

My father was self-employed and he always told me to think and dream big. I’m an immigrant and a hard worker, but I never envisioned myself working for others. I had to learn the business first, so I worked for the top dermatology and plastic surgeons in Beverly Hills. It was an amazing experience and I’ve learned a lot. I’m free-spirited and I realized that I can do better when I’m free to do things my way. I’m so happy I had the courage to move on to my very own skincare studio where I can thrive, grow, and enjoy what I do. Read more>>

Audrey Waldron | CEO and Influencer for Women Empowerment

I grew up in a small western town and was raised mostly by my grandmother. When you’re born and raised in a small town there’s not a lot of opportunity for personal growth and your future generally has an outcome limited to the few options small towns provide. Read more>>

Mark Chaney-Gay | Licensed clinical social worker and therapist

I have always wanted to be a therapist. I know that there is a lot of stigma surrounding mental health and that sometimes we all need support in life. I wanted to open my own private practice to support people in life and also health break some of that stigma. Read more>>

Parker Wright | Creative Producer & Performer

The main purpose was to help create opportunities and a space where people can be treated well, paid well, respected, and procure entertainment with high-quality and professional standards. Read more>>

Rachel Hirsch | Co-Founder of Empowered Yoga + Wellness Growth Ventures & Yoga Instructor

My father is a serial entrepreneur, so on some level I think it’s in my blood. I have been teaching yoga for almost ten years, but always had other more “corporate” jobs. Throughout the years people would ask why I didn’t open my own studio, and to be frank, I had never really thought of it! During Covid I thought there was a dynamic change between teachers and studios. In my opinion, teachers have always been underpaid. Read more>>

Ashley Watkins | Founder & Creator of Naturale Goddace

My thought process behind Naturale Goddace was to provide people like myself, challenged with eczema, skin sensitivities, and dry skin, a natural resource that’s luxurious but doesn’t break the bank. Read more>>

Taneisha Wilks | Wig Maker & Future Professional

My fascination for hair started at the age of 10. Growing up, I would watch my mother, who got her cosmetology license at the age of 21, put smiles on her clients face as they left her chair. This was so inspiring as a young child. Knowing that one day that could be me. Read more>>

Billie Edwards | Nail Tech & Influencer

I wanted something that I could do myself. I wanted my own craft to be proud about! And also a little guidance in life. I, for one perform a service that most people don’t do, nor learn to do. I do Gel X which is safer way of doing nail extensions. It’s definitely harder painting and doing designs without acrylic but all it takes is patience and practice. Read more>>

Frankie Siragusa | Music Producer, Musician, Artist

I think I really wanted to be involved with helping build a community of like-minded creatives. All of the various elements involved with record making are important to me and could have been achieved working for other entities that are already established. Read more>>

Stephen Evans | Owner of WeTheHype

Honestly I didn’t know what I was getting myself into. I just wanted to do something different & I had no clue where to start. All I knew was that I had to figure out a way to increase my income and find more time I can spend with my son. That’s when gaming headsets came to my mind. Read more>>

Eno Enefiok | Storyteller/Filmmaker

I started my company because I had no choice. I needed the backing of a company for a film fund/grant that a project I was hoping to produce was in the running to receive. I didn’t have the time or resources to pitch the project to production companies so I just created my own. Read more>>

Sarah Parkes | Founder of Sparkes Kitchen

Sparkes Kitchen uplifts individuals with disabilities and creates a more diverse and inclusive workforce while baking delicious reimagined Eastern European desserts. Read more>>

Xenia Mateiu | Founder & Owner of Village Rock Shop

I opened Village Rock Shop in 2018 in Carlsbad, California. I was always fascinated by crystals, minerals, and gemstones, by their growth patterns and the environment in which they form. For me, opening this business was a way of sharing my passion for crystals and gems with others but also a way of taking my work life into my own hands. Read more>>

Michelle Menechyan | Personal Trainer & Nutrition Coach

When I started lifting weights in 2016, there weren’t a lot of women in the weight rooms at the gyms I’d frequent and my lifting journey began with a focus on getting skinny rather than strong. Read more>>

Amy Eaton | Photographer, educator, and CEO of Brioka

I worked for years as a struggling, side-hustling photographer dreaming of leaving my dreaded day job. Every morning when I walked into the office of my day job, I felt my soul die a little. I knew I wasn’t living the right life for me, but changing that? That was tough. Bills to pay and dogs to feeds, I couldn’t just take the leap. Until I had no other choice. Read more>> 

Juan Sisto | Photographer

starting a new project always generates self-doubt, but when the vocation is evident you have no choice but to face everything to give yourself to creativity. Read more>>

Michelle Chaplin | Designer, Creator and Magic Maker – Makers Market LA

In March 2021 I launched Makers Market LA. My hope was that all of the artists, creators, designers and makers that had been at home during quarantine making beautiful goods would have a safe space to sell, an outdoor marketplace connect the community who had been cooped up at home the entire year. Read more>>

Mattie Lewis | Wife. Mother. Photographer.

I wanted to start my own business to have something for me. I’ve always had the urge to have a business of my own. It wasn’t until after I had my third baby that I was ready. Read more>>

Seth Bresin | Wedding & Event Videographer

When I started my business, I was very lucky to have a mentor who guided me through the path of legal establishment. I did not have to worry about what to sign, who to send documents too, or any of that usual frustration. I did however worry a lot about; how I was going to find the clients, where I was going to find staff for events, and the endless possible outcomes of starting a business. Read more>>

Mia Bui | Mia Bui, CEO | Haus of Kimia

Our thought process behind starting Haus of Kimia revolved around passion and autonomy. We wanted to wake up everyday and do what we love on our own terms. Read more>>

Beverly Malbranche | Founder & CEO of Caribbrew

I started Caribbrew to make a difference in the lives of Haiti’s coffee and cacao growers. As 17 years old, as a freshman, living abroad for the first time, it dunned on me that I must help make a difference in Haiti. 4 years later when I graduated from business school. Read more>>

Robin Johnson | DJ Heartattak & Co Founder of Bachi Bus

We found something that we all were passionate about as “consumers” and decided to put our own spin and flair on a concept that we loved & decided to share our personal love of food with the world. We knew the basic fundamentals of a successful business consisted of quality to go with the “buzz” that we knew that we could generate. Read more>>

Nikki Son | Permanent Cosmetic Artist & Educator

Initially when I started my business, I didn’t think of how much money I would make or how “successful” I would be. Rather, I wanted to find something that I enjoyed and was fulfilling. I needed a change from my corporate job and figured this was something I could potentially be good at. Read more>>

Cesar Morales | Creative Engineer Designer

I first started my creative profession working for an acrylic fabrication company in Santa Monica. The company at the time only accepted minimal designs such as vitrines and pedestals. During that time, there were not many acrylic fabrication shops in the area. Read more>>

Emily Anderson | Catering Wizard and Tea Merchant

I think I’ve always been a go-getter and self-starter type, and always knew I wouldn’t be satisfied with working for someone else. The idea of working ‘for the man’ so to speak never appealed to me and while I was actually able to work for some innovative start-ups after college in renewable energy and then food marketing and catering sales, I never felt satisfied or fulfilled with the work or how my efforts were being rewarded. Read more>>

Lyann Farrelly | Leadership Coach and Consultant

My business is called Thursday’s Child Coaching and Consulting, not because of the Bowie song as some might assume but because of an old nursery rhyme my Mum would tell me. Read more>>

Hannah Cole | Artist, Tax Expert and Founder of Sunlight Tax

There were several factors. I wanted to have enough time outside the business to have an active studio practice, because I never planned to give up being a professional artist, and I knew that to get that, I would need to be my own boss. I also wanted to create a business that reflects my values, and that empowers my community (of fellow creators). Read more>>

NOWEY BEATS | Music Producer

Me (Josh) and my close friend Max linked up during lockdown. He had been making music for a year or so on ableton live and he sent me a beat he made. This inspired me so much that I started learning myself. Read more>>

Bad Girl Liz | CEO & Founder

I started the Bad Girl brand in 1991. At the time I was stripping my way through college. I worked for Bad Girl in San Diego. In a year’s time, the original owner wanted to sell the agency. There were three other competitors wanting to buy it. I was able to get to the table faster than the other with hot stripper cash. I was the proud owner of Bad Girls. Read more>>

Markayla Hardeman | ShadedByKaylaa

Hey, it’s Markaylaa again owner of ShadedByKaylaa. My thought process behind starting my business really came based off me loving sunglasses, I’ve always had a thing for sunglasses growing up. In 2018, I finally expanded my love for sunglasses to the world. Yes, I put alot of thought into it because I felt like no one would buy anything from me. Read more>>

Anna Jackson | Owner & Creator, Ocean House Apothecary

I started Ocean House Apothecary because I saw a gap in the marketplace for fun, safe, effective skincare products for kids. I had built a community of women who looked to me for recommendations for high-performance, toxin-free personal care and household products and I consistently struggled to find kids’ products that met these requirements. I started out by making body and facial balms, lotion bars, and lip balms and tested everything on my own two kids (as well as my husband and myself — and any willing friends and family!). Read more>>

T’ana Phelice | Author, playwright, director.

I guess I just realized that I was plan A. When I lived in Los Angeles I attended many events at the Richard Lawson Studio and he would always say, “You are plan A. Hollywood is plan B.” That stuck with me. I refuse to be the person that sits around waiting for someone to open up doors for me. Read more>>

Cass “Bunny Chase | Fashion Designer and Stylist “

I decided to start my own business because i’m a bit of an insubordinate. I’ve always struggled with authority. As Sailor Ripley says, “This is a snakeskin jacket! And for me it’s a symbol of my individuality, and my belief… in personal freedom,” Recluse Club represents my belief in personal freedom. I’ve always known I had to find a way to be my own boss. Read more>>