I honestly feel like one of the biggest lies that we're told and led to believe in business is that you have to have money to make money.
I will say though, that nothing is ever free.
And if you are not willing, or able, to spend whatever's necessary on resources, educating yourself, products...then the next thing that you have to be willing to do is be willing to spend the time to figure out how to do it yourself.
I started Pebby Forevee with literally $40 in the bank. I found a little hobby kit from Michael's, a little screen printing box, and it was hilarious because it was essentially a cardboard box with a light bulb screwed into it. And it is by the grace of God that I did not burn down the entire apartment complex, trying to figure out how to use this thing. And actually long story short, I actually had to buy it two more times. So it was like $120 investment. I had to borrow money for my husband at the time. I remember the very first time I burned a little screen correctly. I think I screamed. I definitely peed my pants a little bit, cause I was so excited, and that freedom of being able to express myself and knowing that what I had was a good product because I was already succeeding on Etsy with band tees and vintage tees, I knew that I needed to find a way to make this work.
And so I started to educate myself on YouTube on how to become a screen printer. And you guys, it's not something that took me a couple of hours to learn. It took me overall hundreds of hours of figuring out how to screen print correctly. What happens when the emulsion goes bad? What the heck is a 120 or 220 or 110 mesh? I will say that it was a very rewarding experience knowing and proving to myself that if I wanted something bad enough, and even though I didn't have the money, I could do it at my own pace without going into debt or getting a business loan.
It took me a little bit longer than what it might have most, but I also, the skill set that I had learned through all of that was irreplaceable. And so I want to encourage you — if you are someone who does not have money or resources or you don't want to get a business loan, I want to confirm that you do not need an endless amount of money or a huge book, or you don't need to get a business loan to succeed.
You can start small.
Think of it — like that, like the tortoise, like the tortoise and the hare story, you know, like the tortoise ends up winning because he took his time. Mmmhmmm. Praise be. That is me. I am the tortoise. But listen, this tortoise is not complaining because now I have a seven figure company. And it's all because I took my time.
I taught myself, which also obviously comes in handy. Whenever something goes wrong or something goes awry. You already know the resources. You already know where you can go and you don't have to depend on somebody else to necessarily walk you through or wait on them to go back to you.
You have your own power tool. Your power tool is yourself.
Thank you for coming to my TEDtalk.