Business with Purpose takes you “behind the scenes” with some of the world’s most generous entrepreneurs with host Molly Stillman of "still being molly blog - stillbeingmolly.com." From the CEOs of mission-driven brands, to directors of small, community non-profits, and everything in between, Molly is sitting down with men and women who believe in changing the world through not only their personal lives, but also their professional careers. We believe that every person was created with a purpose, for a purpose and this podcast gives inspiration for how we can all make an impact by supporting businesses with purpose.
Beauty Amidst Chaos | Adisyn Pyles, Freeleaf LTD.
My guest this week is Adisyn Pyles, co-founder and CEO of Freeleaf, an international social enterprise making beautiful products while providing employment and holistic care to at-risk, abused and exploited women.
2:29 – Adisyn 101 She moved to China in 2011 and started Freeleaf in 2016. She knew she was passionate about women’s empowerment and poverty alleviation. 6:30 – Starting Freeleaf Adisyn didn’t want to start a business and she had no business experience, but she knew she wanted to serve vulnerable women. She wanted to highlight traditional art and design as part of her business. 10:11 – How her products have evolved She started with home décor and wanted to create something unique, brighter and statement pieces. 13:11 – What has surprised Adisyn There have been so many surprises along the way, including how difficult the job is at times and how tough it is to develop a product. She’s also surprised by the community they’ve development at the company. 15:53 – What she loves about China Although she's an introvert, she loves the pace, energy and opportunity in China. There’s such fast movement. 17:25 – Leaving China Adisyn and her family decided to leave China when Covid hit last year. They expected to be in the U.S. for a couple weeks until the pandemic was over, but it has taken longer. 26:23 – The core of her business During Covid, Adisyn has had to focus on the core of her business and the core of her family and let go of larger expectations, hopes and pressures. 29:42 – Her staff in China Adisyn has kept in touch with her staff in China, but it has been challenging. They have faced a lot of the same problems working women in the U.S. face, including finding childcare during a pandemic. 34:08 – On the horizon Adisyn wants to develop new products, but the process has been taking a long time. She wants to create more home décor products. 37:30 – Get to know you Child’s movie that scarred her for life? Bambi, The Lion King Favorite Chinese dish? Spicy shrimp FEATURED QUOTES
“I knew I was passionate about women’s empowerment and poverty alleviation.” – Adisyn
About Adisyn Pyles:
Adisyn Pyles is the co-founder & CEO of Freeleaf, an international social enterprise making beautiful products while providing employment and holistic care to at-risk, abused, and exploited women. Combining her passions for women’s rights, collective freedom, and finding beauty amidst chaos, Adisyn co-founded Freeleaf alongside JiaYi Lan in 2016.
With an MA in International Community Development, a tenacity for excellence, and a commitment to sustainability, Adisyn has led the Freeleaf brand through considerable growth—employing over 20 women in the last few years, being recognized by the Kerring Foundation as one of the top 5 social enterprises in China, and being highlighted as a female founder by the Spanx Red Backpack Brigade.
Adisyn and her family have had a wild year, being displaced from their home in China by COVID since January and welcoming their second son in October. They are currently living in Austin, TX waiting out the pandemic and eagerly looking forward to returning to their lives and work in Asia.
Answering Your FAQs About Our Farm!
Happy Episode 240, everyone! Normally, each week I interview a nonprofit director, community leader or person who is trying to make an impact. But it is time for a solo episode, so my special guest this week is my husband, John.
2:21 – One of my most popular episodes My last solo show, episode 230, was one of my most popular episodes. I told the story about us buying a farm. I got an influx of questions from people wanting to know more. 4:10 – Did we always want a farm? John always wanted land. He grew up on a large piece of property and was frustrated as a kid that his family couldn’t have chickens because of the neighborhood HOA. John has been pretty tight with money most of his life, but he believes it prepared him for our big move to the farm. 8:54 – The transition from land to farm We decided to turn our land into a farm because we wanted to be more self-sufficient and self-sustainable. 10:30 – Animals and things we’ll grow We’ll start with chickens. Maybe turkeys later this year and bees. Next year, goats and maybe a pig. I want a horse, but John is not interested in them because it sounds like a money pit. We’ve talked about donkeys. 13:42 – What we want to grow Corn, okra, tomatoes, cantaloupe, cucumbers, watermelons and fruit trees – nothing too exotic. We have a ton of walnut trees. If you have walnut recipes, send them our way. 16:55 – Will farming be our new job? No, it will not be our main job. Part of the goal is to reduce our expenses and create some independence and sustainability. We want to have some revenue associated with the farm. That is a goal we are working towards. We also want to bless people with the food we grow. 18:55 – Do we have a name for the farm? We don’t have any farm names yet. Send us suggestions – email@example.com 19:42 – John’s vision for the farm John enjoys doing physical work and wants our kids to enjoy being outdoors and living sustainably. FEATURED QUOTES “We officially moved into the farm last week, and it still honestly feels really surreal.” – Molly
“I’ve been pretty tight with money most of my life.” – John
“My house is worth 75 times my car value, and it’s not cause it’s a million-dollar house. It’s because I have a 2007 Tundra that I bought 11 years ago.” – John
“We want God to just use this place to bless others however He sees fit.” – Molly
Thank you to our partner of the show:
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Healing From Within | Veronica Villanueva, Alive Well Thrive
My guest today is Veronica Villanueva, who discovered her “why” in life after being diagnosed with stage 4 lung cancer in 2016. Through her work as a wellness expert, she aims to inspire others through a holistic lifestyle built on a commitment to self-growth and good nutrition.
She is a trained chef and health coach based in Los Angeles and the co-founder of Alive Well Thrive, a cannabis line aimed at creating the highest quality cannabis products to help others live their healthiest lives. This is an area I don’t know much about, but I want this to be a place where we can be curious and ask questions.
2:24 – Veronica 101 “I’m very excited to say I am alive despite doctors telling me I had less than 6 months to live in September 2016,” said Veronica. She was told she wouldn’t make it to 50 years old. She’s now 53 and credits her survival to studying integrative medicine. 4:45 – What her life was like before cancer Before her cancer diagnosis, people would have assumed Veronica had a perfect life. She was a super mom with three beautiful, smart children. She protected her kids from reality and sheltered them with a bubble of perfection. But on the inside she was an anxious mother. She was raised to believe that she should stay home with her children, which she did, but she wanted more in her life. 8:42 – What led to her lung cancer diagnosis? Veronica was going through a divorce, but she and her husband agreed to wait until their kids were in college. The divorce became ugly, and it was a shock to her system. She didn’t eat, didn’t sleep and ate tootsie rolls and drank coffee. She started having back pain, and that was the first sign of lung cancer. 14:18 – Loving herself Veronica knew she would beat the cancer and live. The diagnosis opened her eyes to how she was living. She finally felt like she mattered, and she decided to prioritize herself. “I live a life right now where I come first all the time, and that’s not being narcissistic. That’s not being egotistical. It’s honoring myself. I’m rarely depleted. I’m always replenished,” said Veronica. 18:16 – Detoxing her body Veronica detoxed her body with good food and her environment by choosing which people she wanted to be around, what she read, etc. “I really cleaned my life from the inside out,” said Veronica. “There’s not bad fat in my life.” 20:21 – Her businesses She has VeronicaVillanueva.com, which is where she coaches people and helps them become healthy. She also has Alive Well Thrive, which has medicinal cannabis for people with cancer. 25:00 – Why cannabis? Veronica’s company uses cannabis for medicinal purposes, not for vaping. It helps shrink and eradicate tumors, especially at high doses. It can also help with nausea and loss of appetite. 35:30 – Her faith Veronica’s faith has played a huge role in her recovery. She doesn’t believe she got cancer because she did something bad, and she doesn’t believe in karma. 41:25 – Get to know you Her favorite meal – Carrot ginger soup and lentil soup People think she’s an extrovert, but she prefers to be home Cooking and music make her happy FEATURED QUOTES
“I’m very excited to say I am alive despite doctors telling me I had less than 6 months to live.” – Veronica
“I learned to love myself and to give myself all the care and love that I am so amazing at for other people.” – Veronica
“I live a life right now where I come first all the time, and that’s not being narcissistic. That’s not being egotistical. It’s honoring myself. I’m rarely depleted. I’m always replenished.” – Veronica
“I really cleaned my life from the inside out.” – Veronica
http://veronicavillanueva.com/ https://alivewellthrive.com/ About Veronica:
Veronica Villanueva discovered her "why" after being diagnosed with st
Hope is a Verb | Amy Downs, Author & Survivor of the Oklahoma City Bombing
We are going to face tragedy in our lives. It’s a guarantee. It seems unfair and we have questions about why bad things happen. But as a person of faith, I know what Jesus said – in this world we will have trouble, but take heart because he has overcome the world. We don't have to let tragedy define us.
My guest today took an unimaginable, world-shattering tragedy and used it for good. Amy Downs is the CEO of Allegiance Credit Union, formerly known as the Federal Employees Credit Union, which lost more than half of its employees in the Oklahoma City Bombing in 1995.
In the years since the bombing, Amy became a mother, lost more than 200 pounds, competed in an Ironman Triathlon, got her MBA and became CEO of the same credit union that was bombed.
4:17 – Amy Downs 101 Amy is 53 years old. She has a side hustle as a book writer and speaker. She loves riding her bike and adventure. Surviving the Oklahoma City Bombing changed her life in a lot of ways. 6:20 – Big hair and lack of purpose In 1989, Amy had big, amazing hair. She says it was the only thing she had going for her at the time. She dropped out of college and was floundering, not knowing what to do with her life. She took a job as a teller at the credit union in Oklahoma City. 9:35 – April 19, 1995 On April 19, 1995, Amy was sitting at her desk on the third floor when the bomb went off. She was screaming “Jesus help me!” but she didn’t recognize the sound of her own voice. She fell three floors and was buried under 10 feet of rubble. Then, all the noise stopped. She was lying there, not knowing if she was dead or alive. 14:40 – Buried alive “I’m buried alive,” said Amy. “All I can do is think about, I’m getting ready to die at 28 years old, and I’m realizing, I’ve actually never lived. I’ve never lived with purpose.” She was buried for more than 6 hours. 19:57 – Desperate to live Amy’s rescuers talked about whether they needed to amputate her leg to get her out of the rubble. She told them to do what they needed to do to get her out. She was desperate to live. She remembers looking up at the sky, taking a breath of fresh air after being rescued. 25:15 – Changing her life She wanted to be a different person, but she had so much physical and emotional trauma that she didn’t know what to do. But she didn’t let go of that belief. First, she began praying every day. 34:19 – Hope is a Verb Amy wrote a book, “Hope is a Verb.” It was a 10-year project. She wanted to figure out how to help people. 41:43 – Coping with PTSD Amy still struggles with PTSD. She gets nervous if she’s in a crowded space with a lot of people. She also struggles when April comes around each year. 50:20 – Get to know you What kids’ movie scarred her? Wizard of Oz monkeys Something you’d never guess about her? She was a DJ on a radio station FEATURED QUOTES “It was like I had this incredible come to Jesus meeting that I haven’t been able to shake for the rest of my life.” – Amy
“There is a purpose for you. I don’t care what it is, what business it is that you’re doing. There is a purpose for you.” – Amy
“All of a sudden, everything went dark. I could hear people screaming all around me.” – Amy
“I’m buried alive … All I can do is think about, I’m getting ready to die at 28 years old, and I’m realizing, I’ve actually never lived. I’ve never lived with purpose.” – Amy
https://amydowns.org/ https://www.amazon.com/Hope-Verb-Journey-Impossible-Transformation/dp/1734645407 Thank you to our partner of the show:
It’s time for a SPRING CLEAN REFRESH! Let’s get that home sparkling, the safe way with MamaSuds!
Castile soap is the superhero of soaps, it really does it all- from the windows to the walls! It’s truly the only soap you need. What can you do with MamaSuds Cast
A Unique Approach to Pediatric Therapy | Brittni Winslow, Emerge Pediatric Therapy
One of my favorite verses of scripture is 1 Peter 4:10, which says: "Each of you should use whatever gift you have received to serve others, as faithful stewards of God's grace in its various forms."
I really believe that we were all given a gift to use to help, serve and bless others. I think serving, teaching and nurturing children is one of the best gifts. It takes a special person to be able to work in the life of a child, especially with children who are neurodivergent or neurodiverse.
My guest today is Brittni Winslow, a dear friend of mine who lives in Durham, N.C. She is an occupational therapist and executive director of Emerge Pediatric Therapy in North Carolina. She helps create confident kids through customized therapy.
6:46 – Brittni 101
Brittni is married and has three daughters. She is an occupational therapist and always wanted to open her own business.
8:17 – How is occupational therapy different from physical therapy?
Brittni works on functional skills for kids, such as play, caring for themselves, sitting at the dinner table, etc. Physical therapy is working on strengthening or rehabilitating.
9:17 – What makes Emerge so different?
Brittni wants Emerge to be different from other occupational therapy providers. A big part of that is working with the kids and educating the parents, teachers and community partners. “We want to make sure everyone is on the same page and everyone is educated on how to best work with this child,” said Brittni. “I truly believe that no kid is intentionally trying to be bad. There are some ways that their system might be wired that makes it really hard for them,” said Brittni.
14:07 – Generational changes in helping children
Brittni says she’ll often hear parents say, “I dealt with this [issue] as a kid.” Kids are sometimes misjudged as being lazy, disinterested or having behavioral problems. But really, there are some underlying issues that could easily be addressed.
16:48 – Removing the stigma
"It’s not that how these kids are wired is wrong. It’s just a different wiring,” said Brittni. You need to uncover what will work best for kids.
20:51 – Has Brittni’s job affected how she parents her own kids?
She’s always taking one hat off and putting another hat on. She tries to use her tools to help her own children. Even though Brittni has helped hundreds of kids, it can be hard to help her own children. But, having kids has helped her be a better OT and help other parents.
26:35 – How Covid has impacted her business
Brittni has worked on compassion fatigue with her therapists to make sure they are OK.
31:10 – Sensory night at the Durham Bulls
They partnered with the Durham Bulls baseball team and did a sensory night for kids. Some parents said it was the first baseball game they ever took their child to.
36:20 – Get to know you
Song she has to sing? Any song from the Trolls soundtrack Who has influenced her the most? Her grandfather Favorite meal? Angus Barn steak and salad
“We want to make sure everyone is on the same page and everyone is educated on how to best work with this child.” – Brittni
“I truly believe that no kid is intentionally trying to be bad. There are some ways that their system might be wired that makes it really hard for them.” – Brittni
"It’s not that how these kids are wired is wrong. It’s just a different wiring.” – Brittni
Shoes For Kids, Created By a Kid | Carter Waugh, Critts Shoes
Think back to when you were a kid. Do you remember your flip-flops falling off and scraping your feet along the concrete? Guess what? Kids still have this problem.
My guest today took his own footwear problem and decided to actually do something about it. Carter Waugh, 11, is the founder of Critts, a customizable flip-flop clog hybrid designed for running, jumping and climbing. His dad, Ryan, also joins us for the interview.
2:53 – Carter 101 He loves lacrosse, skateboarding, golf, tennis, sometimes basketball, and, of course, designing shoes. Carter was on a family vacation in the Caribbean. He wasn’t happy with his flip-flops or Crocs and asked his dad, Ryan, if he could design his own shoe, called a Flip Critt. His dad told him to create a business plan. 5:30 – Ryan’s reaction Ryan was amazed by his son’s business plan and drawing and his emotional intelligence 9:50 – How Carter designed the Flip Critt Carter didn’t realize how time consuming and difficult it would be to design a shoe He met with a Los Angeles shoe consultant, who helped with the process, and then met with manufacturing consultants in China 19:02 – What Carter has learned At first, Carter thought, “Wham, bam, I’m done.” But the shoe-making process took longer than he realized. “At first I was just like, ‘It’s a cool idea. I might not be able to do it. I mean, I’m like 8. Who makes a shoe when they’re 8?’ But once I got into it, I started liking shoes. I started liking them a lot.” Besides learning a lot about shoes, he has also learned a lot about doing interviews and talking with adults. 23:18 – What Carter’s parents have learned Ryan said he has learned more from his son than his son has learned from him. He says his son is a special human who sees the good in everybody and everything around him. Carter’s initial mission statement was: “To spread happiness, safety and security to all critters.” 26:22 – Carter’s methods Carter’s approach to life is refreshing and fascinating, according to his dad. He wants the business to be simple so people can enjoy his shoes. 32:02 – Critts Cares Carter has created Critts Cares. Every time someone buys a pair of Critts shoes, $2 goes back to his old elementary school. 33:45 – Get to know Carter What song hypes him up? Lil Nas X, Holiday What actor should play him? Someone with orange hair, obviously FEATURED QUOTES
“This was a real life thing, organically, that came out of the mind of an 8-year-old that was like, ‘Wow!’” – Ryan
“After a while, like two years, I finally perfected it to what I have today. And now I’m selling it and hearing tons of feedback on it … and a lot of people love it.” – Carter
“At first I was just like, ‘It’s a cool idea. I might not be able to do it. I mean, I’m like 8. Who makes a shoe when they’re 8?’ But once I got into it, I started liking shoes. I started liking them a lot.” – Carter
Founder, visionary and overall goofball is a talented 11 year old named Carter “Critt” Waugh. He is a very active leader with an active imagination. He loves sports and is a talented lacrosse attackman. He loves his friends, his family and basically he loves anything that gets him dirty and sweaty. He has been the perfect test subject for his creation.
Wow. I’m inspired.
I just finished listening to the interview with Shalini and her journey of creating Open the Joy. I was so inspired! I love listening to podcasts that go beyond how much money we can make and focus on how much impact we can make in the world. Definitely worth a listen.
Subscribe on purpose!!
Love this podcast! Molly is great at interviewing and each episode has relevant and practical content. Love it!
Love BWP! 💜
As a long time listener of the business with purpose podcast, I’ve recommended it to SO many people in my life as a one stop shop for diving into the ethical product industry . Molly is always entertaining and chooses incredible guests and subject matter to keep listeners engaged. I’ve learned about some amazing brands through Molly’s show and highly recommend.