Starting a business can be terrifying. Weighing the pros and cons, the risks, and other considerations can be so overwhelming that often promising entrepreneurs stop before they even start. We asked some phenomenal entrepreneurs about their thought process behind starting their own businesses. Our hope is that by making the thought-process less intimidating we can help more folks think through whether they should take an entrepreneurial leap.

Audrey Martinez | Founder of Audrey’s Chia Cookies

I didn’t really set out with the intention of starting a cookie business – I simply have always cared about nutrition and once I found how beneficial chia seeds were, I wanted to spread the health benefits with others. I came across chia seeds when I was researching foods for runners – I had decided to run a marathon and knew I needed whatever help I could get! Read more>>

Adam Ramey | Musician/Marketing Consultant

When I started this, I knew timing would be everything so I made sure I had a highly structured plan and method of release. I knew I needed to hammer home image and branding with that as well. I wanted to hit hard and I wanted it to be effective and stick with the audience. Read more>>

Stephanie Riel | Brand Strategist. Founder and Owner of RielDeal Marketing

When I first started my business, I was a college senior with substantial experience in journalism and storytelling, but not much in traditional marketing. I discovered marketing and fell in love with the mixture of creativity, data analysis and psychology – for understanding consumer behavior. I knew I needed “real marketing” experience outside of a few projects I had worked on for my father’s real estate firm over the years, so I started my company to take on project work, specific to the marketing field to build my experience. Read more>>

Starr Hardin | Health Coach

I decided to start my own business in health coaching because I want to help women obtain fitness goals that they may think are never possible to achieve. I personally spent years in a variety of fad diets and a resulting yo-yo effect in body weight, never truly understanding how to make the best nutritional choices available to me. My mission is to work with women as a guide to help them live their best healthy lives. I started my business because I want a brand that helps women understand that they are their own person. Read more>>

Jason Euler | Founder & Mentor

When The Artist Path launched I had been working in the music Industry for a little over 2 years. My Artists that I managed Directly had played events like Coachella, EDC, Tomorrowland, and Bonnaroo. I had helped line up Record deals with Insomniac, Dim Mak, Confession, and more. After some time I had more and more Artist’s reaching out to me asking how to get more bookings, how to get their music signed, and overall how to grow their brand. I began to think just how valuable it would be if I could go back and talk to my younger self when I first started in the Music World. Read more>>

Rosalind Prather | Co-Founder | Chief Brand Officer

I grew up in a family of entrepreneurs and my parents always worked for themselves. I know now how important my parents’ model was in shaping what I believed was possible for myself. I don’t think I would have ever even dreamed of business ownership if it weren’t for the precedent they set. Their example made success in my own business feel very much within reach. And I am so grateful for that! My first business was a tutoring company after the remedial education center I worked for closed their doors. Read more>>

Christanie Hunter | Fine Art Painter

Starting my own business was a gradual process. I wanted to give people access to my artwork and broaden the audience of people interested in fine art and design. My goal has been to design an array of products that are functional in everyday life. Read more>>

Aryn Nolan | Natural Wellness Expert & Registered Nurse

People are struggling with their health and want help. Root causes of dis-ease in the body are not being addressed and individuals are spending astronomical amounts of money on modern health care approaches that mask problems leaving them dependent. People were flocking to me wanting help with their wellness and I knew I had the education, experience and tools to help them. It was time to leave hospital based nursing and create my own wellness business that focused on changing the foods we eat, supporting our gut health, addressing daily stress and supporting our body with natural tools to function optimally. Read more>>

Ashley Phillips | Owner of Amour De Sucre Bakery

When I was growing up I always knew I wanted to become a pastry chef! After going to culinary school and and working in the industry, I decided that I wanted to try working for myself and becoming a business owner! I wanted to put my own stamp and creativity on this large but small community. Read more>>

Dara Wong | Owner and Pastry Chef

I always saw myself growing up to be an entrepreneur. Both my dad and my brother started their own businesses and they became by role models. I liked the idea of being able to build something from scratch and creating a culture where people want to work for you. When a business or in my case my restaurant opens and closes everyday I know that I set that up to operate. I am super proud of all the obstacles and successes that we have endured as a restaurant and I know that that feeling I get only comes from being an entrepreneur. Read more>>

Daniel Moore | Commission Driven Metal Artist

Prior to founding the Oxide Studio in 2010, I had worked at a variety of corporate entities as a Graphic Designer, but the crash of 2008 caused me to be downsized, which, in turn, handed me an opportunity to redesign my future. Picking up a variety of skills in metalworking and welding with the sign company where I had been working, I decided it was now or never and took the plunge into my art studio. Read more>>

Taryn Becchina | Arizona Wedding Photographer

Well, I always wanted to be my own boss. Ever since I was little I wanted to run my own business. I have always had an “eye” for the shot and growing up I would always have these visions in my head of photos I wanted to take. I never acted on that passion until I got married and was choosing my own photographer. It just clicked, I wanted her job. I wanted to capture gorgeous photos but wasn’t sure I could do it. It wasn’t until my husband sat me down, pulled up the canon website and said “I’m sick of hearing you talk about your dream and not doing it” and made me order my first camera. Read more>>

Ryan Eckert, MS, CSCS | Head Coach & Founder/Owner of Peak Endurance Solutions, LLC

I cultivated a passion for exercise science towards the end of High School. In college while studying Exercise Science, I began working as a Personal Trainer and loved it. Although I tend to be pretty introverted and prefer to keep to myself most of the time, the interaction I got through Personal Training helped me realize that I have not only a passion for learning about exercise science, but also for helping others reach their health or fitness goals. Read more>>

Rebecca Rodarte | Author/Instructional Designer

I first began my business as a way to offer freelance instructional design for online education and writing/editing expertise. As time went on, I realized I wanted a way to make my own voice heard. With self-publishing an option, I took the plunge and started publishing my own books. My Sassy How-to Series, which includes my signature title, “How to Be Your Own Sassy Heroine” gathers stories from my own life with ideas on how women can start becoming their own sassy heroine following a divorce or breakup! Read more>>

Dr. Jessica Brereton Peterkin | MOMpreneur, Dentist & Academic Consultant

The thought process I’ve had in starting my academic consulting business, FLIGHT TM, was due in part by my desire to meet a need in the minority community. I personally lacked a mentor or step by step guidance in pursuit of my career as a dentist. At the young age of 21 I figured it out but it was certainly a struggle. I desire to level the playing field while simultaneously alleviating the financial burden it is on minority pre-health students to receive clear and concise advisement during a critical stage of their career journey. Read more>>

Mandy Aliano | Top Rated World Renowned Boudoir Photographer & Entrepreneur

My thought process… This is a great question! I knew I was designed for something great, even as a young girl! I worked four jobs as a young adult just to live “The American Dream,” yet I working for someone else’s cause and dream. Boudoir happened naturally and organically, I grew up with a camera in my hand, so I knew I already had the skill and knowledge. I had also worked in many customer service related positions as well, which gave me the confidence to serve my clients to the very best of my ability! Read more>>

AttiQuewa Green | Financial Educator

My thought process behind starting my business was “I love education and I love finance but I can’t go back to corporate America”. Read more>>

Carissa Wood | Carissa Wood

In 2018 four Falconers found each other at the Arizona Falconers Association Desert Hawking Classic. While we were all Tucson Falconers we had never connected until that fateful day at the meet. Through our crazy sense of humor and shared love of Falconry we quickly became close friends. We were soon dubbed, The Tucson Mini Meet Super Friends. The Super Friends made up of Nate and Amber Danforth, my husband Brian and myself traveled the Southwest flying our cast of passage Harris Hawks and sharing many adventures together. Read more>>

Mych’Iayla (that is an “i” not “l” after the apostrophe) Alexander | Womb Keeper & Faith Life Coach

My thought process was to assist other women, and couples, along a Journey I had already walked. I took the things I wish someone had told me and the support I wish I had felt (from those who had experienced it) and I built upon that. It wasn’t to say that I didn’t have support but I needed support from a community that had experienced the same thing so I created a piece of that. Read more>>

Laurie Canfield | Art Teacher, Ceramics Artist, & Owner of Sunshine Sunflower Studio

I began working in ceramics as an art major in college. Afterwards, I became a public school art teacher in rural Florida. One day, a friend asked where she could take her children for art enrichment classes and since there was no place in our town offering anything for them, I began giving classes around my dining room table. The idea of having my own art studio was born! Fast forward a few years, and I began working exclusively in ceramics, and showing my work publicly. Read more>>

Mary Mounce | Aesthetician & Skincare Developer | Holistic Nurse | Massage Therapist

Starting my first skin care business happened kinda by accident. I was a newly graduated Aesthetician in 2005 and had the greatest opportunity to get hired right after graduation at the school I went to. The owner would always make comments to me that I needed to go out on my own and create my own business. At the time the thought of having my own business excited me but also terrified me. I didn’t have the confidence to pursue it, but she kept telling me that if I started my own business I would be very successful. Read more>>