Damn, I thought it would be easier...
Hi Bebes! Its a beautiful sunny day in Los Angeles, California. I am currently sitting on my rooftop terrace, enjoying my coffee, surrounded by my husband and furbabies. I am reading all of your emails and taking it all in. It makes my heart happy to see that many of you, are interested in being more than the generations before you. How inspirational! This made me think about my journey with Lyda Beauty and although I may not have answers for you all, I hope my story inspires you in some small way...
The truth is, it has been a laborious five years since I created the Cleopatra Cat Eye Stamp. I must admit, it has not been a smooth ride, like I thought it would be.
When I first embarked on this project, I really thought I could just plant a seed, water it and soon my family and I would be enjoying the fruits of our labor. I mean, I knew I had invented a great new product with an awesome concept. Thee hottest make-up tool invented since the eyelash curler in 1931. Surely, it would be as easy as showcasing my product to investors (who would see my revolutionary winged-eyeliner and beg me to take their money), choosing a design, packaging, and manufacturer... then placing it in stores where, it would fly off of the shelves and into every make-up enthusiast's collection of must haves and violà! Soon, we'd be sitting pretty...
Yeah right! If only things were that easy.
I wish someone would have told me what an intense process this was going to be. How this would change my life in every way imaginable.
I'm a tough lady but after having so many frown on my idea, doors shut in my face, and jumping on fabulous trains that would ultimately lead me in wrong directions, I became discouraged. The stress began to take a toll on me, my heart felt heavy with anguish and I came close to something that felt like, an inch short of, a mental breakdown.
There were design malfunctions, packaging hiccups, tight budgets and countless sleepless nights because there were deadlines to be met and solutions to be pondered up. There were several moments, where I felt that I just couldn't do this anymore. Days where I thought, "Hell with it, I'm throwing the towel in, I'm tired, I'm tried!", but somehow I would manage to muster enough strength and will to keep on pushing. I was determined to make things happen. I thought, "I refuse to let all of it be for nothing!". I guess being a bit stubborn has its benefits.
The lessons learned and the growing pains on both a personal and professional level, almost broke me. I was challenged in ways that, I'm sure hadn't even been invented yet and as painfully unbearable as these lessons were, I wouldn’t change a single thing... not one.
I transformed the challenges of this project into the fuel that kept me going. The lessons helped strengthen my will to see the Cleopatra Cateye Stamp succeed. I refused to allow my vision, of impacting the beauty industry, to collapse. I didn’t have it all figured out but I knew what I wanted and I didn't stray from that.
It took a while to find my tribe. You know, the people that not only understood my vision but were equally excited to help see it through. The group of people that would propel me through my darkest hours and ultimately help me reach the finish line. I am forever grateful for you all, no matter how small your role in my journey... from the bottom of my heart, thank you! Ultimately, it would be a good standard text book three years, before the first fruit of my labor peeked through and lord how sweet it was! Finally! The light at the end of, what seemed to be a never ending, tunnel.
They say that the second you're about to give up, the toughest moment of your journey, is usually the moment before your breakthrough... they're right! Always remember that.
In the end, I discovered that this was more about how much I believed in my vision, human relations and abilities to problem solve, than it was about the product itself.
I'm here to tell you bebes, that whatever your endeavor, buckle up and put on your big girl panties because sweetheart, it isn't always easy or pretty to see your dreams through and that's the honest truth. There will be tears, sweat and in some instances blood (thank you paper cuts) but it is all definitely worth it... YOU are worth it.