Geophysicist Susie Peebler was training for her first marathon when she began to experience agonizing back pain. Desperate to overcome her injury without surgery, she turned to steroids, painkillers, and cortisone shots. Nothing worked. Frustrated but determined, Peebler explored traditional Chinese medicine. She discovered yoga for self-healing and learned that stretching along energy channels and massaging specific acupressure points could open up the stagnant “qi” which cause tightness and pain. Inspired by this knowledge, Peebler developed an activewear line where the seams represent the traditional Chinese energy channels and acupressure points are incorporated into the designs. With this goal to create clothing that empowered women to understand how they can self-heal, Ghost Flower activewear was born.
Transitioning from geophysics to the fashion industry was a feat riddled with challenges, but Peebler met these obstacles with resilience and agility. Now, she hopes to help other entrepreneurs with their journeys and has shared her top three tips for those looking to establish their own company.
- Learn Everything You Can: “If you are getting into a business you don’t know, you must dig in and learn all aspects of the business yourself. You can’t just depend on outside consultants,” Peebler advised. Unlike most entrepreneurs in the fashion industry, Peebler didn’t have a background in fashion. Her background was in science. She took it upon herself to learn how the business worked at the detail level, and this helped her understand the implications of her decisions.
- Hire Carefully: According to Peebler, her biggest career mistake was hiring the wrong people: “Because I didn’t have a background in the fashion industry and digital marketing, I was too quick to hire those that did without completely vetting their experience and background. Instead of digging in and learning the business myself, I let them run the show.” This was a costly mistake, and Peebler cautioned other entrepreneurs to hire with diligence.
- Take Advantage of Increased Independence: As an entrepreneur, you have the power to create a work environment where you can thrive. Utilize your independence to create habits and atmospheres tailored to your success. “I work out of my home office with Schuyler, my golden retriever, by my side so it feels easy and comfortable,” Peebler shared, “Plus, I use my afternoon yoga practice as my lab to become aware of which energy channels feel blocked and then test out acupressure and stretching techniques to release the flow of qi (energy).” For Peebler, taking advantage of this autonomy has allowed her to maximize her productivity and build her business efficiently.