This isn't going to be my typical blog-- but I wanted to get this out there in case anyone needed to read it.
Around this time in 2015, I opened my first indoor playground location.
I am reminded every year by my memories that pop up on Facebook.
And in all those pictures of our first opening months, I am always smiling, playing with my children, greeting new customers.
But to be honest-- I get a knot in my stomach every time I look at them.
Because even though I was smiling, I was actually miserable those first several months. Heck, that whole first year was torture.
All of the unknown, all the unexpected, and to top if all off I found myself pregnant with my second child (surprise!) shortly after opening-- and I did NOT have an easy pregnancy, which only put MORE strain on both my business and family life.
One think you probably know about me if you've been following me for a while is that I never pretend to be perfect.
I enjoy sharing all of my mistakes, every poor choice I've made in my business, every failure.
But I am not sure if I ever shared WHY I do so much of that.
It's because I REMEMBER how isolating it can be as a brand new business owner.
No one knows how much you go through, how much pressure you're under, how many confusing decisions you have to make, how much self-doubt creeps in.
Even your spouse or your family can struggle to understand.
And when I opened back in 2015-- no one was sharing anything about this industry publicly.
There was little to no information about opening an indoor playground and at times it felt like I was navigating through a maze in the dark (and fun fact, I'm afraid of the dark!).
So once I overcame that first year, found my footing, and started seeing real success-- I decided I would never let another indoor playground owner go through what I did.
And by year 3 I knew I had so much invaluable experience, knowledge, and know-how that I just felt so called to share it with anyone else considering this business.
Because one thing I have learned is that anyone who sets out to open a play based business generally does so for such genuine reasons-- to get more time with their own family, to better their community, to enrich the lives of children.
We're not money hungry, corporate greed hounds.
We are mothers, fathers, community members-- who just want to make our world a better, more play-filled place.
And that is why I created Play Cafe Academy.
So that anyone who started off on this road after me, wouldn't have to walk over stones (or really fire & glass, from what it felt like).
They'd be able to use the road I paved for them--
NOT with perfection, but with PERSISTENCE.
I know how financially devastating a failing business can be to a family-- especially when there are leases and start up costs involved.
So I put not only everything I did RIGHT into the program, but also share all of the very WRONG choices I made, that nearly caused the demise of my own business and personal finances.
So please don't ever feel like you need to walk down this road alone or pave your own path.
I know you could probably do exactly as I did and figure it out and learn from your own mistakes-- but trust me-- you do NOT want to spend hundreds of thousands of dollars and over 3 years "figuring it out"--
Especially when it can be so much easier than that.
So if you're here hanging out for my youtube videos and all that fun free stuff, THANK YOU from the bottom of my heart for being here. You are the reason I do what I do, even if you NEVER sign up for one of my courses.
But if you are serious about this business and decide you want to dive in-- I have your lifeboat right here.
I used to consider my program to be a "secret weapon" for indoor playground owners to stand out and excel against their competition, but now I really consider it essential.
And that's NOT just to pat myself on the back.
It's tough out there, and the industry is always changing. And that's why I work with hundreds of indoor playground owners every single week to keep everything inside the program updated and relevant.
And that knowledge just isn't accessible elsewhere-- but it is SO key especially in 2021 and beyond.
Well, just thought I would share that.
Don't believe all the smiling pictures you see on social media-- especially from new business owners.
Entrepreneurship can be a dark, lonely, place if you let it be -- like I let it be at the beginning.
And it can destroy your family & marriage.
Lucky for you, now you have access to all the support you need... and making sure you always have that lifeboat is truly my mission in life.
Let's dream big and create a more playful world, together.
P.S. Want to learn more about Play Cafe Academy & sign up? Just click here.