We had the good fortune of connecting with Samantha Williams and we’ve shared our conversation below.
Hi Samantha, we’d love to hear about how you approach risk and risk-taking.
Everything in life is a risk, to making any decision. But not making a decision is a risk, too. There have been periods of my life where all of my decision-making was based on managing risk–falling in line with the status quo, or the path of least resistance. I’ve done that more than once, and each time I’ve ended up in a situation where I was feeling suffocated. For me, having my whole future planned out took all of the mystery and excitement out of life. But whenever that happened, I would throw myself into the deep end and lean in to the unknown. And it was scary, but totally worth it. I moved to LA at 27 from Denver, I didn’t know anyone or have a job and it was one of the best decisions I’ve ever made. Then Ellen and I decided to leave our corporate jobs in Digital Marketing to start Daughters, with no back up plan if it failed. We had no idea what the future had in store for us, but we’re still here! Daughters has been the hardest, most educational, most rewarding thing I’ve ever done and I’m so humbled by the support of everyone within our community, I’m grateful for them every day. But none of this would have been possible if we hadn’t leaned in to the unknown and taken the risk to fail.
Alright, so for those in our community who might not be familiar with your business, can you tell us more?
Ellen and I started Daughters in April 2018. Up until that point I had been working in advertising agencies as an Account Director. For the 10+ years I was in the corporate world, I was always exhausted and working around the clock. I had to travel a lot for work also, which made it really difficult for me to balance any semblance of a personal life. And I was so burned out that when Ellen had the idea to create a women’s self-care brand I was immediately on board. At that point, I really didn’t know what Daughters was going to become, but I knew my soul was dying. I had to find a better way to live and I wanted to help other professional women feel better. It was incredibly scary to leave the security of a steady paycheck but for me, finding a healthier, more balanced life where I could help other women was worth the risk of failing. We had no idea what we were doing so we spent the first couple of months just doing research on other brands, thinking about our mission and what kind of products we wanted to create. We were doing things we never had to do before, so we just consumed all of the information we could find. We’ve learned a lot of lessons along the way, and we had to learn to manage a whole new kind of stress–one where we were learning on the fly, and simultaneously trying to recover from our burnout. At the beginning, the fear of failure was constantly popping up, but we decided we were always going to be open to taking risks and trying something new. Because even if it didn’t work, we’d have the experience and knowledge to move forward with. And that’s the same motivation that inspired us to explore alternative healing therapies, Ellen became a certified Breath Work practitioner and I got certified as a Master Reiki practitioner. As we were trying different things to help ourselves feel better, we were exploring a ton of new and amazing healing modalities that we didn’t even know existed. Constantly blown away by the healers we were meeting and the things we were learning, we decided to start our podcast, ‘Woo Knew?’ as a way to share our experiences with our community. And as time goes on, Daughters continues to grow with our community. We initially set out wanting to sell products to help professional women feel better (and sleep more), but now Daughters is so much more. Daughters is about helping women find peace within themselves, to regain balance between their minds, bodies and spirits. We call it ‘soul-connection’ and each of our products is created with love and very intentional. We sell handcrafted tools to help professional women create rituals throughout their days to bring moments of stillness into their busy lives. We realized through our personal work, that when you connect back to yourself you’re able to access greater love, resilience and peace in every area of your life. Everyone in our lives benefits when we do the work on ourselves. And now in the midst of the pandemic and the riots, we are more committed than ever to creating a community for anyone who is doing the self healing work, because it’s more important now than it’s ever been before. We are feeling the uncertainty and the anxiety as much as anyone right now, because we are all human in this moment and we are all going through this together. And we will always provide a safe place for healing, where anyone can come and join to hold space for each other, no matter where you are in your self healing work. We don’t have a growth plan or a trajectory to hit, we just want to give back. We want everyone who uses our products to feel that they’re loved and worthy, and our community is open to anyone who is on their own journey to self healing or interested in learning more about alternative healing modalities. I’m so grateful I took the risk to leave my corporate job to create positive change in the world. As 2020 continues to unfold, I am less and less certain about where we’ll end up, but right now I have the opportunity to do what I love, to work on bettering myself and help others at the same time. So all I can say is that for me, the fear of uncertainty faded over time, and even though it’s a constant reality in my life–All we have is today, and each new challenge is an opportunity for us to grow and learn, and for Daughters to evolve with us. And I don’t regret any of it, all the pain and the challenges had to happen so I could appreciate this moment, today.
Any great local spots you’d like to shoutout?
My favorite thing to do in LA is go to the beach. When friends come to visit, they always get excited to take a drive up PCH and spend a few hours at the beach. Maybe we’d hit happy hour at Duke’s on the way back. I also I love art and museums, I could get lost in them all day. And it’s always fun to bring friends from out of town to the Getty. The exhibits are breathtaking and so are the views. It’s a great way to see the city and take it all in.
The Shoutout series is all about recognizing that our success and where we are in life is at least somewhat thanks to the efforts, support, mentorship, love and encouragement of others. So is there someone that you want to dedicate your shoutout to?
I want to give a shoutout to my business partner, Ellen! When we started Daughters in 2018, I had no idea it was going to turn into this crazy journey of self discovery and healing. And doing the work on yourself can be incredibly difficult, but our partnership is a constant source of support and strength for me and I wouldn’t be where I am today if it weren’t for all of the incredible healers in our Daughters community, but especially for Ellen. She’s my rock when things get hard, and encourages me when things are going well, and I’m so grateful to have her in my life.
Ellen will be uploading all of our photos together with her responses to the survey for Daughters. Thanks!