Updated: Aug 2, 2020
"Now this a story all about how, my life got flipped turned upside down. And I'd like to take a minute just sit right there,I'll tell you how I became the business owner of Tree of Life Hair Care, LLC."
So are y'all here for the shenanigans because we are. We at Tree of Life Hair Care want to share our unique story with everyone because we actually didn't pop up overnight. So let's press the rewind button and get to talking.
Clark Atlanta University in 2016
Sooo, it was my sophomore year at CAU and I remember it like it was yesterday. I was discussing this exact thing with a brother of mine, and in case y'all have not read my introduction in the about section, I did hair in college. Yes, I was the kitchen hair dresser lol. But I loved what I did and I was good at my craft. Anyways, I had just finished my brothers hair and I told him what the Lord had put on my heart but I didn't have a name. So he said "Curls by Z" and I thought about it and remember asking God, is this the name? He didn't reply audibly but I could not let the name go, it was stuck with me so I knew that was the name. Y'all I don't remember if I cried or not but let me tell you, I WAS PETRIFIED! I was scared because I didn't know how to run a business, so I put it off. But let me tell you about the goodness of Jesus, I could not shake this name or idea.
Two years prior to this, I was in my dorm room and I remember asking God for my purpose because I had no idea what I was supposed to be doing with my life. I remember writing down several things in my journal and this was one of them. Y'all I really didn't know it was my purpose, I just thought I had always wanted to do it and I was passionate about #naturalhair. Anyway, I still had this business idea that I could not shake and that I was honestly scared, nervous, doubtful, fearful, and just plain old did not want to do. I was scared to step out because I thought what does natural hair have to do with Jesus? How are you a Christian and you're going to be an entrepreneur, that's not of God? I mean I don't know who was worse me or the devil with the doubts and disbelief. But like I said, God is good and he's also faithful.
So, I finally graduated college and I still have this same business in my head that I cannot shake. Oh y'all thought I started it, NOPE! I doubted myself for 3 years before I even as so much looked at a website. I didn't want to do it because I was scared. But Zaire, why were you scared? I was scared to be successful and for this to work. I thought if I avoided it then maybe it would go away. TUH, Jesus said you gone do what I called you to do. After graduating from CAU, I moved back home with my parents. I started to look for websites and look through images, and ask others for their opinion of stuff. Please heed my words, DO NOT DO THIS! While people may never discourage you, sometimes we can do things for other people and make decisions because so & so said to do so. Finally, a logo was created. Y'all I thought this was the logo for the business, this was cute, totally Zaire and my target.
On my way to work, I would find pieces of art I wanted and stick them with the name. I was not committed to this thing yet, but there was a sense of urgency for me to birth this gift inside of me, so I finally took it serious. I finally started during the summer 2019. I was officially in the process of owning a business. I started putting things together and making logo's, I found a website, I made products, and I thought it was done. I thought I had hit the jackpot and that the success was going to come overnight. *insert laughing emoji* I remember the week before launch date, there was so much peace but there was still an urgency from the Holy Spirit. Finally launch date is here and I'm scared. I launched Curls by Z and it was not what I had expected. There was no millions of orders for our #TwistandLocSouffle or for our #ZsHairGrowthOil. It was real silent. Below is our first logo 😁.
I thought I failed and internally I was crushed. I thought there was going to be this outpouring of support and I was going to quit my job the next day. Y'all when I say I was living in Lala land, I was. But it was truly because I did not know what it took to run a business, I just knew I had to finally heed to what God was telling me to do. I think I cried about everyday. I remember I went to God and I had reminded him of a promise that was made in 2016 about Curls by Z, because I felt like I should've had it on the day I launched. Now that I'm a little further in, I have realized what I should have had was several seats and some humility. So we launched and for 5 days, nobody bought a product. *inserts laughing emoji* Y'all I was not laughing then, I was hurt hurt but I kept right along pushing and telling everyone about Curls by Z. Then the DM's came about doing product reviews and others who wanted to test it out and I thought OKAY Jesus, I see you! It was awesome but I was not prepared for the reviews.
We were reviewed by two ladies who both had growing YouTube channels and they did an amazing job, so I thought the orders would pour in and I would quit my job and become a full time entrepreneur because that's what it "seemed" everyone was doing. Little did I know, I was wrong. I did not get another order until February, and that was after we re-branded.
Re-Branding Curls by Z to Tree of Life🤨🤨
So in February, I gave up low-key. I was exhausted, I not only had my regular job as a Case Manager that I was drained from mentally, emotionally, physically, and spiritually but I was also trying to start a business. My patience was running thin because something had to change. I knew I couldn't just give up on God like that so I was like well let me try something. I was in a Christian women's group on Facebook and I had put the question out if someone could help with my business because I was struggling and I needed advice. I was hesitant to put it because I just overthought. Anyway, I received a DM from a woman named Martina, she is the owner of @shemeansbusinessco on Instagram. She explained to me what her services were and what she did. I ran and booked a service expeditiously, with a quickness hunty. I was tired of feeling how I was feeling and I knew I was not called to work for other people.
Once I set up a meeting with her, she snatched my edges, gave them back to me and snatched them again. She's a Brand Consultant, Content Creator, Christian SHEprenuer who really loves helping people. Like I literally do not think I would have even continued with this business had I not taken her up on that call and invested into my business. It was one of the best calls I had because I needed someone to be honest with me about my business and that's what I got. We had our call and during the call one of the things she mentioned was "Are you open to changing my brand name?" YES! I wanted to do whatever it took and I trusted this woman heard from the Lord honestly. She gave me scriptures to mediate on, and if you look on the labels of your products and think oh that's cute there's a scripture. No that's Jesus baby, and there's a reason that the scripture is on there.
When the call ended, and not a moment sooner I closed my eyes and I got the words "God what is th-- and immediately I heard Tree of Life. Now y'all I was confused because I was like huh. Are you sure? I think I was more so confused because the answer was immediate and I was not expecting it. I changed the name immediately, but there was still confusion about the name and the correlation. 3 months went by and I still had yet to pick up my business because I was still confused but I knew that I couldn't quit. In June, we relocated to another state and I was excited to finally get my hands back on my business. I had been praying for a mentor for a long time because I am a "first generation entrepreneur" and I don't know nothing about running a business.
While on IG one day, I saw a woman named Chanique (@startwithniques on IG) who is a Christian Entrepreneur Mentor and she had just started a mentorship program. I was like " Wow, oh my gosh! oh my gosh!" because I had been looking and I booked a call with her to get a spot with her because I could either continue to complain about needing a mentor or I could take a leap of faith and schedule a call. Y'all, I'm so happy that I decided to invest. It has been a hugeeeeeeee help to my business. The way that her program is organized and broken down into weekly sessions, focusing on your mindset, focusing on knowing your business it is incredible. I'm super grateful for the resources that social media has afforded me and I cannot wait to share this journey with y'all. After the first meeting with my mentor, I decided to join the Just Start Mentorship program (yes, you have to pay), and shortly after the first call. The latter half of the name was given to me during June, because y'all I was confusion.
- When God tells you to do something, do it the first time. You may be scared, afraid, nervous, doubtful but God is our Father and he can honestly deal with your emotions. (Jeremiah 29:11, Jeremiah 1:5)
Believe in God and believe in yourself. (1 John 4:4)
- Ask God for help. He is using you as the vessel to accomplish his will for your life, ask him for help. (Psalm 37:17-20, Psalm 121, Deuteronomy 29:4)
- IT WILL NOT BE PERFECT! I shout this one because this is my personal struggle. If this is something that you struggle with, please know it will never be perfect. It's not about perfection but about progression.
- It will take time to get what you have been shown. God shows things to people differently and everyone's purpose is different. For me, I have the bigger picture in my head that I can see but the daily steps are where I have to trust him. Trust God and know that he is faithful, read your BIBLE, pray, seek him daily, include him in every step of what you've been called to do. (Proverbs 3:5)
- Remember this is GOD's business and not yours. When I say this, I want you to consistently be cognizant of this reminder because there is a specific way/layout that God has concerning what you've been called to do. Pray for the Holy Spirit to lead and guide your steps.
- Invest into your business! Please invest into your business. If you do not,..... I don't want to sound harsh but you have no reason to succeed and you will fail. You cannot accomplish this on your own, even God didn't create us on his own. You need help. There are so many people who have been called to certain areas to help. I had to shut up and spend the money and believe by faith. I encourage you to pray, pray, pray. (Genesis 1:26, 1 Thessalonians 5:16). My recommendations for help are (@startwithniques, @shemeansbusiness, @conturasocial on Instagram)
-Pray.... but you also gotta do work! Have faith...... but I need you to exercise it. You're not going to make any $$$ if all you're doing is praying and having faith. Faith is an action word btw! You gotta do work, it's not going to fall in your lap. Yes Jesus is for you and never against you but uh hunny, even he worked. God worked for 6 days and rested on the 7th to create everything. (James 2:26)
I know this post is quite lengthy, not all the blogs will be this long but I wanted to make sure y'all had the entire story. This is our story of how we went from doubt, fear, comparison to starting even though we were scared to quitting to getting back up and appreciating the journey. We love you, God bless you and please don't forget to shop treeoflifehaircare.com.