The first step to starting a business is deciding to start a business. They say the first step is the hardest and in our experience this is especially true when it comes to starting a business. Getting over the mental roadblocks can be tough, often harder to overcome than the challenges you’ll face once you actually start the business. Fellow entrepreneurs share their thoughts below.

Melissa Villanueva | CEO & Founder of Brewpoint Coffee

Ever look on Craigslist for an espresso machine only to buy a coffee shop instead? That is the story of Brewpoint Coffee. Back in 2013, I (Melissa Villanueva) was working in the corporate world doing a job that just checked all the boxes for success out of college. During this time, I felt something still wasn’t aligned. When I met my now husband, Angelo, he encouraged me to take a leap and follow the dreams I had for myself. Read more>>

Charisma DiSario | Performer & Designer

For me it was a bit of a surprise. I had 1st started by designing things for myself. Then one day I decided to design something for my Drag mom, Carmen Adore, and when she walked into the bar to perform the reaction was incredible! It just kinda started in that moment. Everyone was asking for me to design for them. Read more>>

Caresha James | Makeup Artist & CEO of MYNK BEAUTY

I’ve always been into makeup, beauty, and the lifestyle, so starting my own makeup line pretty much came easy to me. As a former Makeup Artist I wanted to be bigger than that as in, a business woman the CEO of my own makeup brand, I thought to myself like how dope would that be? I had already all these ideas on how I wanted my brand to be, look, who I wanted it to cater to, and etc. Read more>>

Mordy Menkes | Food Truck Entrepreneur

After working in the restaurant industry for almost 10 years, I decided it was time to break out and wanted to be fully independent. I was giving so much energy to see other restaurants succeed I wanted to put the same energy and passion toward my own business. I also wanted something to be able to pass on to our kids Zisi, Shaya, Benny, Hila, and Lieba Pearl and make them proud. Read more>>

Sally Qiu | Founder of For Sea and Oats

For Sea and Oats was born from my personal experience of having sensitive skin and my professional background in climate change & sustainability. A few years ago, I had the worst acne breakout that I have ever had, and that’s also when I discovered the soothing effect of colloidal oatmeal as a skincare ingredient. Since then, oat-based products have become stables in my skincare routine. However, I found there is a lack of all-natural options in oat-based products, so I decided to make my own by completing a diploma course in organic skincare formulation. Read more>>

Paschal Ugwu | Visual Artist

I started my own business with an idea of exercising my freedom. I want to be able to do my thing the way I want without being caged under someone else’s dream. I want to make that mistake and learn from it. I want to experience life freely Read more>>

Briana Campbell | Cookie Extravaganza

Well it all started 1 day while I was at work. Well actually for a few months I was trying to figure out ways to have a 2nd set of income. Most people have a hobby to where it brings them in money. (Selling shoes, doing eye lashes or eyebrows, etc). I didn’t know or have the funds or connects to do either of those things. So while at work one day a coworker of mine was helping me brainstorm on some things I could do to bring in extra income. Read more>>

Christopher Gonzalez | Chris Gonzalez Captain and Educator

I created my business because I am passionate about the ocean. I grew up spearfishing and boating in South Florida and it’s something that I’ve done my whole life.. That passion coupled with a desire to be an entrepreneur lead me to create Captain Planet Charters.. I started the company about five years ago with one goal in mind. That is to share with people what makes our coral reef’s such a beautiful marine habitat.. Read more>>

Denise Tirrel | Fine Artist with a Preference for Pet Portraits

When I started to get seriously involved with art, it was primarily to serve as a balance to my stressful job. I uploaded a photo of a painting on my private social media account and suddenly requests started coming in asking if it was possible to buy this painting and if I would accept commissions. The reaction was surprising, because I just wanted to show how I spend a relaxing Sunday afternoon. The customer who bought this painting immediately commissioned two more. They in turn were seen by another customer who wanted to get your pet painted. Read more>>

Gabriela Galeazzi | Owner of Solo Mi Casa

Everything originally started when my daughter got married 5 years ago. For her wedding, we decided to see if we could help her and her fiancé cut costs by finding some second-hand plates and glasses at an affordable price so they wouldn’t have to pay the high cost of renting them. Through this process I realized I had a pretty good skill of finding things in places where most people wouldn’t. Read more>>

Grace Terrell | Holistic Nutritionist

The idea to start my own practice as a Holistic Nutritionist developed because I was dealing with some health issues of my own. Throughout the process of trying to improve my health naturally I learned so much about the impact food has on every aspect of our health. Once I saw how much my life improved from changing my diet I felt a responsibility to share it. I then went on to get certified to become a Holistic Nutritionist and start my wellness company. Read more>>

Chitarra Monroe Chimere Cokley | Caterer and Event Coordinator

Different people have different interests in life. There are some people who like to manage things and they are excellent in that.; and then you have people who like the whole idea of creating something from scratch and watching it grow and provide value to people. Well Chitarra Monroe and Chimere Cokley of 2Sisters with 1 mind are the ones that like to create from scratch and watch it grow. So to answer your question, the thought process was very simple.. Read more>>

Megan Hunter | Flower and plant enthusiasts

Thought behind my flower/plant shop is more geared towards the fact that this, for me, is therapy. When I diagnosed with stage 4 breast cancer. I wasn’t able to hold down a job due to obvious reason. I was lost but the one thing I could turn to was my garden. Then it occurred to me, why not have this available for anyone and everyone. Read more>>

Valeria Galvan | Founder & Creative Director

Starting my own business was a process that developed naturally throughout my freelancing years. My journey began in 2018 when I landed an internship at Rolling Stone magazine in their video department. Here is where I began to truly discover my passion and develop the innate talent within me. Here is where I got the most exposure to the entertainment industry, learning all the ins and outs, the good and the bad, and what would ultimately lead me to the work I do today. Once my internship ended, I stayed on as a freelancer and continued to absorb every bit of knowledge that I could about the industry at large. Read more>>

Urban Goods | Angelina Carralero – Owner & CEO

Urban Goods began over two years ago formulating with all types of ingredients. Yet, nothing stood out like hemp oil! One day when reading an article on the benefits and medicinal properties of hemp oil for sensitive skin. The idea to add hemp oil to our best-selling Eucalyptus Spearmint Body Bar came to light and we noticed something; these soaps felt DIFFERENT! Read more>>

Valerie Tangui | Allthatval: Artist & business entrepreneur

I didn’t want to work anymore. Not for others and just for me to have more time for my music & my mental head space. Work took up my whole day then driving back & forth & dealing with others, it just drained me. I used my last check to buy a box of inventory risking it all and I flipped it. Once I knew I held the power and I can grow this into something bigger I did just that ! Read more>>

Tiffany Gonzalez | Owner of That Great Notary, LLC and Paralegal

My thought process behind starting That Great Notary, LLC was to gain financial freedom and I believe it will lead me to that. As an FIU Business graduate, it was only a matter of time before I created my own Business. I also want to build generational wealth and have something to give to my daughter. Having worked for my father’s company for years I gained hands on management experience but left with no assets, I knew I wanted to change that when it came to my daughter. She is a big motivation behind everything I do. Read more>>

Andreina Fuentes Angarita | Artist , Art collector , Entrepreneur and writer

I opened Hardcore Art Contemporary Space (HACS) in Wynwood in 2003 to be part of the contemporary art scene of Art Basel Miami Beach . In 2006 working with international artist I found out I need to incorporated a non-profit Arts Connection Foundation to integrate the business in the educational and Miami cultural affairs system . When the artist did workshops and talks with different educational and cultural institutions (FIU or Botanical Garden) the gallery could not received the fund because could be taken as income and didn’t benefit the business or the artist. Read more>>

Lili Koós | Jewellery Designer, Jewellery Professional

I had the opportunity to gain experience in my field in different countries working for different companies and studying in very well recognised institutions like The Gemological Institute of America (GIA). After a few years I had very clear vision on how I would like to combine these experience to create my own creative ideas and to run my own business. Read more>>

Maria Segura | Architect and Interior Designer

Since I was a child, I have dreamed of having my own business; I have always been a highly creative person. So, I decided to combine and follow my entrepreneurial desire with my creative skills. Fantasy, objectivity, creativity, technique, design, service, and purpose; would be the right words to describe my life. Hence, Legos, coloring books, colored pencils, and crayons were the protagonists of my childhood; Read more>>

OJ Gaskin | Rated R Miami Podcast, radio and TV host

I wanted to have the 1st, and final say on any project I worked on. For example, I started my career in radio years ago thinking that I could create programming for people to listen to. It didn’t take long for me to see that I couldn’t call the shots even if I had a great idea. The program director and the owners of the station decide what the format is and what songs get played. At that point, you either conform to what all the other stations are doing. Or, you create your own and get with like minded people to help it flourish. I chose the latter. Read more>>