Maureen Lowden is an Elite member based out of Guelph, Ontario. She is an Independent Consultant with Arbonne International, a health and wellness company that focuses on pure, safe, and beneficial products for everyone – men, women, and children – and promotes healthy living both inside and out. We are excited to be sharing Maureen’s Success Story!
Arbonne chooses carefully what they put in the products, just as we choose carefully what we put on our skin and in our bodies. What is not allowed in the making of a product includes 2,000 ingredients (1,400 from the European Union and several hundred more). The products are certified gluten free and certified by the Banned Substances Control Group (BSCG), certified cruelty free by PETA, are vegan, non-GMO, tested regularly for substances considered prohibited in sport and the products have no artificial colours, flavours or sweeteners. Ingredients that are harmful to the environment and have a negative impact on communities are not allowed, including ingredients that have high levels of irritation or toxicity, a high allergen content, those that are known hormone disrupters, cancer causing, or have negative consumer press.
What inspired you to become an entrepreneur?
What inspires me is learning. I’m a bit analytical so I need to understand the why. Once I understand my why then I’m able to move forward on the journey. I like the saying, “Please be patient. I’m in training”. It helps me to take a deep breath, slow down, and understand the process. I would like to have the freedom to live my dreams and to be on a balanced path for personal growth. I would like to be in a financial position to be able to help people, to help schools educate children, to help young students earn university degrees, to be able to hold a baby in my arms who needs comforting, and I would love to be sitting on a beach listening to the waves roll in to shore. Arbonne, I believe, is the vehicle to help me move along this path. I really do want to go the extra mile even though it’s the path less travelled. There are no traffic jams on the extra mile. I enjoy companionship and meeting people along the way and Arbonne provides the community to help me succeed.
What is your “WHY” behind your business/being an entrepreneur?
I’ve been using Arbonne products for quite some time, but my focus to become an entrepreneur with Arbonne came about when I retired as an elementary teacher. Another Independent Consultant with Arbonne asked me if I would like to attend a District meeting with her. How could I say no? I was, in fact, busy. I was enjoying retirement – getting up late, relaxing with a cup of coffee, eating a full breakfast, reading the Toronto Star and watching CNN, looking after the grandchildren, reading, going to the knitting club, digital scrapbooking, getting my nails done, and baking; but ultimately, I knew that my focus had to be on something more productive. I’ve always been busy and my work ethic has always been to keep busy. I remember my mother saying when I was working as a clerk at Zeller’s that if I thought there was nothing left to do, then I needed to do it again. In my 50’s, I earned a BA and 2 Masters degrees, and I taught Special Education and Grades 4 and 5 for 11 years. I love learning! And, I raised a loving and wonderful daughter. Arbonne’s mission statement fits with my educational philosophy and I enjoy using the products.
What’s the best part about owning your own business?
The best part of owning my own business is the questions people ask of me about the products and the company. It helps me to grow and learn and appreciate the team approach and the community. I can transform my career and enjoy personal growth by being coachable, open to feedback, embracing my obstacles, moving forward with integrity, and being the best possible version of myself. I can celebrate the success of everyone in the business and not just my own personal success, because it’s not about competition and stepping on someone else to get ahead. I once read a story about caterpillars climbing up a mountain (I don’t remember the author to credit but part of the story is firmly implanted in my thoughts), where one caterpillar kept climbing up. Sometimes the caterpillar would have to climb over other caterpillars, sometimes it went around, but it never stopped to ask who was under or over or beside. The caterpillar just kept climbing and wondering why. Why was everyone going up? Did anyone know? And then a beautiful butterfly came by, flapping its wings, and finally got the caterpillar’s attention. “Who are you?” asked the caterpillar. “I am you,” said the butterfly. Relax and enjoy the journey. Celebrate success for all.
What impact did other people/experiences have on you, and how did they help you get to where you are in your business today?
I love how women are supportive of women these days. It wasn’t always so, and there will probably be times when you’ll feel frustrated that women haven’t stayed the course and supported you. Family has always been supportive, and always there in the difficult times. I worked as a secretary for a few men and one woman that helped me tame the unconventional me. Yoga and meditation has been extremely important in helping me understand my personality and my quirks. A few university professors helped me along the journey and an administrative assistant who told me I could finish my Masters degree and on time. Certainly the studies helped me in understanding communities and with personal transformation. I was offered a teaching position at the age of 55, a brand new teacher embarking on a new and exciting career. As an entrepreneur, the Arbonne community has been a great help and very supportive. Arbonne customer service, Executive VPs, District Area Managers, Independent Consultants and everyone within the community offer business learning opportunities and opportunities for personal growth.
What values do you believe in and live by, and how do they shine through when it comes to your role as a business owner?
A favourite saying of mine is, “The road to success is always under construction”. Let me deconstruct this saying. *The road*… it’s the road less travelled and requires a wee bit more work and knowledge, so you need mentors and people to coach you and support your decisions. *Success* is definitely a personal definition. Success looks different to everyone. For some it’s money, for others it’s friends and family. Or it may simply be living up to moral and ethical values… trust, cooperation, loyalty, respect, integrity, courage, honour, principled, open-minded, balanced, reflective, resilience, determination, perseverance, tolerant, caring, knowledgeable. It may also mean being able to get up after being hurt or experiencing a no or failure. *Always* changing your Why and knowing that change is inevitable. *Under construction* means being flexible, adjusting to the situation, being mindful of others, and knowing that I am – we all are – a work in progress. I like to smile.
What are you most proud of when it comes to your business/being an entrepreneur?
I am most proud of the fact that I have committed myself to building a business and partnering with a health and wellness company that cares about their community and the products we put on our skin and in our bodies. I am supporting and helping other Arbonne Independent Consultants to build their successful business. And, I will be successful in creating a viable business working hard on my skill set of working with people to maintain a healthy lifestyle, maintaining open communication and building positive relationships as we journey together.
What does the future look like for you and your business?
The future for me with Arbonne is to have a viable business reaching the Arbonne business goals of Executive Area Manager and being able to communicate and articulate my goals to help others.
Any tips for women thinking of starting a business?
Start something. Take action. Find a place you can sustain and protect it. It’s about how fast you can get back up. Move forward with integrity and be the best version of yourself. When you believe it’s possible, it will happen.