Starting a business ain't easy – Arctic Flora

Starting a business ain't easy

Hemp entrepreneur Tiina Varrio aims to work "less but better".

In the middle of it all, it is easy to forget where you came from and how many important steps you’ve taken. I have now been an entrepreneur for half a year, so it is a good time to look back a bit.

In six months, you can experience all kinds. When I was starting up my business, I was in such a rush to get everything done right away. The pressure to succeed was insane. I have made innumerable decisions and choices and will know how well they carry me financially only much later. At times I have been so tired and doubted myself. 

Will this ever take off? I have invested so much and thrown myself into chasing my dreams – what if this does not work out after all? 

Luckily, the startup phase is behind me, and the business’s steady everyday work has begun. I arrived at the point where I realized and accepted that this will never be ready. Sounds like a negative conclusion at first, but in reality, it is cathartic. 

There is no point in trying to get everything done and your vision to shape up during a single workday, week, or month. The only option is to go forward bit by bit. 

And in fact, bit by bit is good. I remember how empty I felt after publishing my online store. Because of the frantic pressure to "make it" my expectations were high as a kite. But the galaxies didn't explode. The snow kept on melting at its own pace. So underwhelmed I felt. Today, I still had enthusiasm and joy in store. I have a vision and ideas that I still want to execute. Online store is still here, and looking back it was a huge concrete step! 

So accepting this'll never be ready – why couldn’t I work half in jest? Why shouldn’t I take it easier and enjoy the ride now, when it is clear what I’m doing, and the present moment is rewarding? I realized that I get the same result even if I wasn’t at the studio clutching my laptop and my sewing machine like a frantic weasel.

In fact, stressing less actually gave me the insight on how to do MORE with less effort. If I were to pinpoint a state of mind in which I aim to operate, it’s “less but better”. 

And when I start listing my doings from the past six months, I have accomplished an incredible amount of things that I can be genuinely proud of. I created an online shop. I developed, designed, and sewed the products. The brand identity is on a highway forth, and the management is in order. I have had and bought help, thank you to all of my friends and collaborators, I would not be this full of an entrepreneur without you.

The most important thing that I have recalled is why I began in the first place. I wanted to give hemp textile the status it deserves. This is the objection of the North to fast fashion and poor-quality textiles.

I am extremely lucky and grateful that all this has been possible so far. It is good to continue from here. 

    Picture taken by my lovely friend Rosa Heart. 

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