The power of mindset is truly incredible, so nurturing positivity is fundamental to taking care of ourselves and maintaining balance. Practicing gratitude through writing in a journal is an amazing way to focus on what is wonderful, declutter our minds, inspire and to improve productivity. We spoke with Larissa from I am Happy, I am Here to learn how a life changing, personal experience led this #girlboss to launch a range of valuable tools and share the benefits of feeling grateful daily.
Tell us about your business journey
My business journey began in December 2017 when I launched I Am Happy, I Am Here.
I had been using blank notebooks as gratitude journals for such a long time as I felt many benefits from this simple daily ritual. After many years, I decided that I wanted to create my own gratitude journal. One that was beautiful, simple and had the questions set out in them, so it motivated me to continue to fill it out daily.
I created a few samples and once it was perfect I got the minimum quantity I could order, which was 500. When I launched the business, I posted in some of the Facebook business group pages I am in and just told them about my gratitude journals and shared my excitement with them. After those posts, the sales went absolutely crazy! I was in shock, I had gratitude journals everywhere and had three friends over helping me pack them (it helped that it was a few weeks before Christmas and they are perfect gifts).
Within the first few weeks I had sold hundreds, which was like a dream come true because I know that is very unusual in business. After Christmas, it slowed down and since then I have been working on growing the business, giving as much helpful information as I can to my customers and creating a supportive, encouraging community of people that want to work on their mindsets. A big highlight for me was when I created my free 14 day gratitude challenge e-book (available on our website). Myself and 230 others signed up to complete it. We would upload pictures and talk about how we felt about the different topics, is was so much fun and I loved chatting one on one to people about it. I’ve recently launched my second product which is the Vision Journal and they are off to a great start. It’s been a very exciting year!
What is your personal experience with practicing gratitude and how did you begin?
I lost someone close to me to depression 10 years ago now. That turned my life upside down and my mental state was not in a good way. I was determined to change my mindset and get myself well again. I started seeing a psychologist as I wanted to understand more about depression and how to deal with grief and although I wasn’t in a good place at the time, I was also really intrigued and wanting to know more about how the mind works and why we think the way we do. At this time I came across gratitude writing and each day I would take 5 minutes out to focus on positivity and that really helped me. Sometimes I would even write in my gratitude journal a few times a day. Ten years on and I am still writing in my gratitude journal. I will admit I am not as frequent as I used to be even though I have my own journals, but I do still do it and I still feel the benefits when I do.
“We should really take a step back and realise that we already have so many amazing things in our lives”
What are the benefits of a gratitude journal and why should we consider using one/implementing into our daily routine?
I think feeling grateful is something that everyone should feel daily. We get so caught up in how busy our lives are, how much we should be doing, what we should have in our lives. When we should really take a step back and realise that we already have so many amazing things in our lives. From the new day that we get to live today, to the eyes you have that allow you to read this blog, to the clean water we have to drink. There is so much to be grateful for. Practicing gratitude has many benefits for us, it improves productivity, inspires and motivates us as we aren’t cluttering our mind with negative thoughts that don’t serve us, it increases mental strength, self-esteem and can also ease anxiety.
What is the most rewarding thing about being a #girl boss?
I am lucky that I have been able to connect with so many of my beautiful customers. I have people contacting me regularly to tell me that they love the work I am doing and have felt the benefits of their gratitude journals, they share their stories with me and the fact that they are taking the steps to practice gratitude & work on themselves is the most rewarding part. I love seeing other people happy, that fills my heart.
How do you feel about being a modern woman in business?
I love it! I have always wanted to own my own business, I have had two previous businesses before this one (I was a make up artist and had a swimwear line). As hard as it can be I enjoy each aspect of it from accounting, working on budgets, designing new products, running the socials, marketing etc.
“I love seeing other people happy, that fills my heart”
Most valuable tools and resources that you have tapped into that have helped you along the way?
I listen to podcasts like “Stevie Says Social” she talks about social media marketing, I have found that very beneficial. I am in a Facebook group called “Like Minded B****es Drinking Wine” which has around 80,000 women who are in business or want to get into business. We all chat and ask questions, its great! Doing collaborations on Instagram has been very helpful in gaining followers but also connecting with the other business owners who know what you go through & you can ask advice from.
How do you balance the many hats you wear as a business owner and entrepreneur?
I won’t lie, it’s hard to balance everything. I still work four days a week for another company. So, it is hard to come home after work and focus on the business after a long day at work. I have found that outsourcing a lot of my tasks to others helps me a lot and I am happy to do that as I am always pushed for time and I feel that is the most efficient way to get the job done well & quickly. Once I work full-time for myself, I will have a good go at doing these for myself but for now it’s working well for me.
Future goals and plans?
My goal this time next year is to have grown the business by double and to be working for myself full-time. I plan on creating more products that help with motivation, organisation and mindset. My ultimate goal is to one day be doing seminars and be able to meet my customers in person. I am hoping 2019 will bring balance for me in all areas.
We are so thankful to Larissa for sharing her personal story and business journey. Depression and anxiety affects many people worldwide, so education and promoting tools and resources that can be adapted to assist even in a small way are so vital for supporting anyone who may need it. Many of us have had this topic touch our lives in some way, whether through your own personal experiences or the experiences of others, and we are very grateful to be able to contribute to raising awareness and advocating resources to make a difference.
Connect with I am Happy I am Here on Instagram, Facebook and head to the website to get your very own gratitude journal or for a lovely gift for someone special who would benefit from practicing gratitude. We absolutely love ours (in pink of course!)