The road I’ve been on for the last decade building this company from nothing, with little to no help has taught me a lot. Going forward every Friday I’m going to share an experience good or bad that has taught me to be completely self-made and with that, teach you how to do it too. - Also, if you have a specific topic you’d like me to talk about feel free to reach out. I’m an open book and I’m happy to share.
To start this series off, I wanted to talk about something we all experience - being underestimated.
We’ve all had these moments. You have a goal or a dream that you’re so excited about and certain will work. Then you start to share this idea with people and their response isn’t what you expect. Instead of enthusiasm you’re met with strange looks, side eyes and maybe even a patronizing comment.
Trust me!! I’m no stranger to this. Especially if you’re someone like me, doing something completely outside of the box that people don’t understand or think is possible. Add in being a women with little to no connections, recourses or business experience trying to build a food manufacturing company from the ground up.
Probably the most egregious experience I had in this regard was years ago working in a shared kitchen with another bakery. They were a traditional bakery and well, my bakery obviously is not. So they had a very hard time understanding what I do and any recognition or publicity I recieved in their eyes was absurd or unmerited. Oh and they weren’t shy about letting their feelings be known. It was incredibly shitty of them and hurt me a lot as I looked up to them in certain ways.
As the years have passed and I’ve only gotten better at what I do, I sometimes think back to those really awful interactions I had with them. Then I think about where I am now. While these last 3 years have by far been the hardest, most stressful years of my life… being underestimated by both them and other people I’ve met along the way really turned out to be somewhat of a blessing.
When you’re surrounded by people who underestimate you, you have nowhere to go but up. You have two choices, you can either move on to a different goal or you take that cynicism and use it as a motivator. Either way, you’ve learned.
And just as important to note, when people send shitiness or disbelief your way, 99% of the time it has little do to with you and everything to do with them. With their fears and their insecurities. In the moment it sure as shit doesn’t feel like that. But believe me, it’s the truth.
All these years later I’ve watched as people who didn’t believe in me failed, gave up or just straight fucked up. But I’m still here pushing on and turning their negativity into something positive. You can do that too.