I have been attempting to study coffee shops around the valley for a while now. I have noticed a recurring trend amongst successful coffee shops. The biggest trend of all is that I don’t feel like I fit in with the vibe of the shops. Many of these shops are Instagram hot spots. There are unique drinks that bring in a certain type of client or I guess influencer into the business. They will purchase the unicorn latte and take a cute selfie with it. It is free advertising for the business and a cool new post for the influencer. The people that venture into these coffee shops are incredibly beautiful. It is really a different clientele from Starbucks. The branding of these coffee shops is superior honestly.
My coffee shop mentor is always telling me that her business is her. The theme, the colors, and everything else is a mirror of herself. It’s authentic and that’s what people come for. Of course, she serves a fabulous cup of coffee too.
So here I am..overthinking as usual…thinking to myself…I can’t open a cafe. I can’t keep up with the trends. The worst part of all…what if people don’t like me? What if my authentic self isn’t liked? What if it’s boring and too old school?
How do you remain authentic in an unauthentic world?
There have been times in my life where I have questioned who I have become. I took steps backward in order to move forward.
At the end of the day, I am working on being my true authentic self. I would want my business to be a replica of that.
So I did some soul searching. My friend Kathy recommends thinking about my childhood. What did I enjoy because that was true love? It wasn’t for anyone else it was just for me.
I enjoyed scary stories in all shapes and forms, tag, hide and seek, making haunted houses, playing with my animals specifically my pigeons and birds, Halloween was my favorite holiday, I enjoyed reading and writing, I enjoyed bike riding, and occasionally painting. I loved theater and I loved going to blockbuster to pick out a scary movie to watch. I loved playing Super Mario brothers. I loved hanging out with my siblings and my cousins. Those are the basics of what I remember.
I still do a lot of these things believe it or not.I have no idea how to apply this to my future business but it’s a start right? How do I sustain authenticity and profit from it?
I don’t know what clicked in my head but I realized it isn’t about being liked. It is about being authentic and if someone doesn’t want your authentic self then what’s the point? It might be that age has made me wiser. I think that’s my best advice to anyone trying to find themselves. Just be you. That has been the recurring theme for me as of late and it’s challenging. Sometimes we want to be liked so badly that it alters our character. But, I say..I rather be myself with all my flaws and insecurities. It is too much work trying to be someone else. Of course, growth is important so don’t confuse the two. I guess I’m still trying to figure it all out too.