Over the past few months, I seem to have greatly throttled my tea business. For one, it’s a hazy progression when you are navigating based on an appreciation rather than on a business plan. Like the changing weather and the seasons, perspectives start to shift. I’ve taken a course of study that has focused on continuing to mature my knowledge and appreciation of tea and keeping it more introverted and less extroverted. Over the past three-plus years, it’s been illuminating and challenging to share a passion across drastically different environments and people.
The moment I consciously pushed my tea business onto the world was the moment I realized that by doing so I was flirting with a state of inauthenticity. I was really just trying to be entrepreneurial in the face of a lousy job market and wanting to make something of myself at 29. What I’ve discovered over the past nine months is that this is a lifelong project and cannot be subject to the dichotomy of success or failure as a business.
To shed a bit of light onto the notion of inauthenticity, I’m referring to my steps to purchase wholesale and immediately turn around product in hopes of making a profit and creating a structure in which to sustain myself. It’s not a completely naive notion, but I have come to realize that I do not resonate with this path at this time. Ultimately, if I am to start a tea business with the intention of growth and evolution, a more holistic understanding is called for, such as a trip to a tea-growing region to establish a relationship with the trees, the soil, and the farmers. Maybe then I can draft a better vision for such a delicate venture.
Until then, I’ll be sitting alone with tea and sharing when it feels appropriate. Perhaps a cat or two might join me.