Chrissy Gruninger empowers individuals in creating more harmony in their lives and supports professionals in creating more harmony in the world. Chrissy is the author of the forthcoming book “Lost and Found in the Land of Mañana, Wild Wholehearted Living in an Imperfect World”. She offers personalized coaching based on her signature approach, Inherent Harmony, as well as social media management for wellness and eco companies committed to spreading positive energy.
Chrissy Gruninger // Social Media Wellness // Multi-Passionate Entrepreneur // Costa Rica // 40s
What motivated & inspired you to start your business?
For years living in California, I suffered from debilitating allergies. Yet every time I traveled to warmer, more humid climates, I was healthy. I could breathe! I knew my health issues were preventing me from living a meaningful life. After I wrote a book about my travels, it was read by an eco hospitality management firm in Costa Rica and from there, they contacted me and hired me to support them in their online marketing. I moved to Costa Rica a year later and have been so fortunate to work with so many people doing good things in the world.
What steps did you take to get things going in the beginning?
I learned everything I could! I read books, I took trainings, I spoke with other people in my industry to better understand what I wanted to offer. I looked inward to determine who I wanted to work with, which type of clients I could best serve. I asked for help. I hired an amazing business coach who really helped me figure out the nuts and bolts. I tried out different ways of doing things and found what worked best for me.
What has been the most effective way of raising awareness of your business and getting new customers?
I’ve been fortunate that all of my clients have come from referrals from current and past clients. However that wasn’t an easy task. It took developing strong and committed relationships with each of them. I worked a lot of hours (and continue to do so) to ensure that I’m offering my clients the highest quality, best possible service.
What challenges have you faced and how did you overcome them?
Being an expat and running a business in a totally different culture…that has been my biggest challenge. Not understanding (or having dealt with in the past) the concepts of discrimination, bullying, not being paid for services rendered, being told I charge too much. Or not having team members show up…because in this culture it’s accepted that work is just not a priority.
That has all been really new for me and more difficult than I had ever anticipated. How did I overcome them? I really dialed into who my niche was: Who I wanted to work with (and who I didn’t want to work with). It didn’t happen overnight. There were a lot of missteps along the way but as I learned, I developed new processes for screening potential clients. I learned how to say No. I also learned it often wasn’t about me, per se. There were other underlying issues, like their own insecurities, that were creating the divide between us and causing the difficulties. I learned that, most of the time, those situations were totally out of my control. And I learned how to be okay with that.
Can you tell us about any habits you have/things you do, which set up success every day?
I have now set really clear boundaries around time. I didn’t always do that but I have found that when I start and end my day at set times, it really provides me with the ability to show up and serve my clients in a much more balanced and profound way. It also provides me with a more harmonious and healthy personal life.
What advice would you give to other entrepreneurs?
To really know who you are and how you want to show up in the world, we must do our own inner work. And even then, we will make mistakes. When you fall, just pick yourself back up, brush yourself off and keep moving forward. Reach out and ask for support. We have all been there, you are not alone!
When I face a big challenge, I…
pause and breathe, before responding or making any major changes.
The most courageous thing I’ve ever done as an entrepreneur is…
moved to Costa Rica on my own, with just one client and a very small savings.
If I could go back in time to when I started my business I would tell myself…
to make all the mistakes I made. It’s how I learned and grew and became who I am today.
The best piece of advice I’ver ever been given is…
don’t put your eggs all in one basket. Diversify, have more than one client.
My favourite business tool/resource/book/podcast is…
Online marketing schedulers, they create so much ease in my life.
My favourite quote is…
“You are the average of the five people you spend the most time with.” – Jim Rohn