Shallan Ramsey's Entrepreneurial Journey
I have faced many personal challenges in my life, too many to list; however, I have always found the internal strength to continue moving forward with positivity and love in spite of my circumstances. My life experiences have taught me that I can overcome obstacles bigger than me, and that is precisely what has given me the confidence to pursue my dreams regardless of the level of difficulty.
I believe I was born an entrepreneur. I was the little girl in the front yard with a lemonade stand. My first job was self-created when I began teaching swimming lessons in my backyard as a teenager. My work scope has been wide and varied since then, ranging from modeling to the medical field and many positions in between. I've had my own tile installation company, construction clean-up company, and at one point I was selling designer denim; however, my latest endeavor has been, by far, my greatest.
It was mid-Fall of 2012 that I stood in my kitchen with Glad Press & Seal, a pair of scissors, scotch tape and an idea. Taking that idea from my head and making homemade prototypes marked the beginning of an incredible journey.
I had no idea what I was doing. I had never invented a product before. I knew it would be hard, require patience and would most likely take way longer than I would like it to, but I had a simple and profound realization that made it easy for me to pursue my dream. Time passes by. I could either do nothing, and surely nothing would happen. Or I could do something, and something could happen … but time goes by either way, so why not try?
Being a true entrepreneur is not for the faint of heart. You can be sure that plenty of people will let you know that “90% of startups fail” and many will try to fill you with self-doubt and negativity. Unfortunately, in the beginning, it can feel like no one really wants to help you.
I spent about a year searching for a manufacturer willing to attempt to make my unique design. I heard “no” after “no” after “no.” Keep in mind, at this point I was requesting NDA’s to be signed and returned each time before even sharing my idea. It was a lot of work just to hear a “no” and there were times I felt incredibly discouraged. I had to continually remind myself that all I needed was one “yes,” so I kept calling. And calling. And calling. Words cannot describe the rush of pure elation I felt when I did get that one “yes!” If you’ve ever been compelled to jump up and down from overwhelming joy, you may understand what I felt in that moment.
Steve Jobs once said, “I’m convinced that about half of what separates the successful entrepreneurs from the non-successful ones is pure perseverance.” I agree, and that is precisely why I will never quit.
I work exceptionally hard every single day because I really want to make a difference. I sincerely hope to see my dream change the world in a positive way, not only for the health of women but for our environment. It’s very rewarding to know that the product I invented has the potential to save lives, by preventing potential exposure to bloodborne pathogens in public restrooms. It’s also exciting to think about how my idea will help save trees!
My goal is to help in the effort to normalize the period by spreading awareness about this important topic. Women everywhere deserve to finally have access to an intentional solution. I hope my story can inspire anyone who may be struggling in their own life, and show other women that you really can do whatever you put your mind to no matter who you are.