Annie Lawless is the creator of Blawnde and the co-founder of one of the biggest organic juice companies in the U.S Suja Juice. But success doesn’t come overnight, as we all know, and Annie’s journey to where she is today wasn’t all sunshine and rainbows.
Here’s how she did it, in her own words.
When I was in law school, I became depressed for the first time and knew law was not my passion.
I was putting so much time and energy into something every single day that was not what I wanted to be doing with my life. I made a drastic decision on day while studying in the library, and walked to my guidance counselor to withdraw from law school. From that day forward, I put all of my energy and focus into creating and being in control of my own destiny so I could wake up every single day and be excited about my life.
The toughest part was the beginning of Suja’s real growth when we launched in legitimate retailers.
We had previously been a local home delivery service throughout San Diego, so the jump to retail and all that entails was a big question mark because we had never done anything like that before. But, we got through it and learned what we didn’t know. We made a few mistakes, and asked a lot of questions, but ultimately, people want you to succeed and want to help you when you are passionate and hard working and want to do good things in the world.
My blog Blawnde has become a space for my readers to see other aspects of my life and connect with me on a more intimate level.
It is my space to dive deeper into health and philosophy topics as well as share beauty and fashion tips and product knowledge. I love having an outlet to connect with my audience and inspire each other.
I have 2 important rules that keep me on track no matter what’s happening in my life.
The first is, I never eat when I’m not hungry, but I never let myself get too hungry. This means I don’t mindlessly snack or order food when I’m out just because everyone else is or because I’m bored. I wait until my body actually wants food before eating.
However, I don’t ignore those initial hunger signals and cross over into ravenous chew my arm off mode. This makes you lose control and eat anything that you can easily find because your biological need for food has now taken over and your judgment is impaired. The second rule is that I never get caught off guard. All of my friends know you can find any one of the following in my purse at all times: almonds, an avocado, an apple, hard boiled eggs, almond butter packets, and coconut oil packets. This helps me answer my body’s initial hunger signals and hold me over until I’m able to eat a full meal so I don’t get stuck and then binge later because I’m so hungry by that point.
I have always been a morning person, so it is often the most productive time of my day.
I wake up really early, usually between 5 and 6, and the first thing I do is meditate for 30 minutes. Then, I spend about 20 minutes washing my face, putting on my skincare and a bit of tinted moisturizer and lip balm, and heading out the door for my workout. This is usually hiking, yoga, or weight training. Then, I come home to have breakfast with my boyfriend and start working on emails for the day. Around 9 I hop in the shower and get ready for my day. If I don’t have meetings and plan to be at my computer for a few hours, I will often skip the shower and hang out in my workout outfit all day. Glamorous, I know.
I am a big dreamer and I always have goals I am working on, but the number one goal for the future is to do what makes me happy.
This can be in big ways, and also small ways, but every day choose the things that make me happy. I am very confident because I have seen it in my life already, that if you put your energy and purpose into the things that make you happy, you will be successful because you will work much harder than you would doing anything else and you will feel endlessly inspired. In the next 5 years, I would love to have a family and have mastered the balance of being a really amazing wife and mother while also still being me and having my next wellness brand up, running, and thriving.
My biggest tool for planning out my goals and dreams is journaling because I can really form ideas and figure things out on my own through writing. I have gotten the best answers in life about problems I’m facing or questions about the next step from my own thoughts because they look much clearer on paper.
Final piece of advice: never doubt your abilities!
You may be young, you may be a female, and you may have no effin’ clue what you’re doing (I was all of the above – still am!), but you are smart, capable, driven, and can make anything happen if you really want it. There is absolutely nothing stopping you. Don’t let superficial obstacles get in your way. If you don’t have money to get started, seek out investors. If you don’t know how to get packaging, manufacturing, website, etc., send tons of emails to people who do and someone will inevitably write you back.
If you have too much on your plate to get everything done, find an intern who will be excited to help you for free in exchange for experience. Where there’s a will, there is ALWAYS a way, so put on your big girl pants and make it happen! Like I said, there is nothing stopping you. The world is a big wide open place and opportunity is at every corner if you want it, so take it.
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