My sister is the owner and operator of Earthly Delights, a business she describes to be “… a passion project that I began 5 years ago. While in university, I began my small-scale vegetable stand as a secondary means of income. I began to fall in love with growing my own produce, harvesting it and selling my items to the general public, as well as educating people on the importance of buying local and following my own personal slogan; ‘know the face attached to your food.'”
It’s been really gratifying to watch my sister and her business grow and flourish from five years ago to where it stands today. What started out as a veggie hut at the end of our driveway is now a highly respected name in the Brantford region with a diverse array of products and services offered (frozen soups, bath products, custom artesian woodworking and produce). It’s also been challenging, however, to simultaneously see my sister’s happiness and stress-levels escalate as she builds her business up.
I think a lot of people take small businesses for granted. On a surface-level, small businesses seem wonderful. You’re your own boss, you run the show, and what you say, goes. If you dig a little deeper, though, and delve into the nitty-gritty of running a small business, you discover how challenging it can be at times, and further, the insane amount of work that goes into running a successful business. You work ridiculous hours. You don’t get a whole lot of sleep. Money is tough in the beginning, and it takes time for success to formulate. Quitting seems like a tempting option on a daily basis, and some days, you question why the hell you ever got into this shit.
For any small business owner, these feelings are all too familiar. What sets them apart, however, is that they continue to work ridiculous hours. They continue to get little sleep. The push forward despite money being tough, and they don’t quit, no matter how hard they may want to.
Next time the opportunity presents itself to support a small business, please do so. It really can make a huge difference.