A strong community can promote new ideas and ensure accountability. It can also act as motivation, support, and even provide a little friendly competition. The power of community is undeniable and the Okanagan tech community is no exception.
Our community is strong and growing with record speed and maintaining a connection through a period of growth like this can be a challenge. Nobody panic, we've got a plan.
Introducing, The Faces of #OKGNtech. A showcase of Okanagan tech entrepreneurs, partners, supporters, and cheerleaders designed to fuel more connection, more growth, and more excitement. Follow along (on the blog and on Instagram @OKGNtech) to learn more about our growing community and what makes them awesome.
Meet Marissa. Marissa Young is the founder of Wildflower Healing Arts. But she isn’t always practicing reiki and reading tarot cards. Marissa ensures she has lots of time to spend with her partner and their fiery daughter, Ava Rose.
Can tell us more about your educational training?
"I was working in Vancouver in the fashion industry, however it wasn’t what I was hoping it would be. I was at a point in my life where I wasn’t happy and found myself soul searching. I immersed myself in different modalities, one of which was tarot. I taught myself, and I’ve been doing tarot ever since. During this period of self discovery, my cousin had bought me a reiki session with Stacy Simpson. I just remember laying on the table and then I woke up completely covered in sweat. Stacy spoke the same language that I did and, after that, I knew it was something that resonated with me. I ended up doing my reiki training with her. I still consider Stacy one of my greatest teachers."
What is reiki?
"It’s a Japanese healing modality. It’s based on a holistic approach: emotional, spiritual, mental and physical. What it looks like is, you lie down on a massage table and then the practitioner places their hands over different energetic points on the body. Every session is different with a client, some sessions we work on past life trauma, some could be focused on childhood trauma, grief, anxieties, a host of various issues. It’s not just the physical body we’re working to heal."
Where do you work?
"My primary focus is my healing arts company. I offer reiki, tarot readings, training, sacred gatherings and ceremonies. Additionally, I do a little marketing work on the side with a company called BNL Media Consulting. Every now and again I’ll also help my friend, Jade Wolf, creating and decorating events for Wolfette Events."
What do you enjoy most about being an entrepreneur?
"I had a really hard time working for people. I would always see ways that the business could improve, or ways that things could be done differently. I used to see it as a negative trait. I realize now that it was because I was a natural-born entrepreneur. I enjoy being able to create my own life. Now that I have my daughter, we’ve truly created this amazing lifestyle in the Okanagan."
Can you speak into the importance of the healing arts for entrepreneurs?
"The healing arts are a form of self-care. It’s about checking in with yourself during the busy lifestyle that is part and parcel with entrepreneurship. Often times entrepreneurs are giving a lot of their energy, so the healing arts can be an opportunity to receive. To be able to have a space where they can openly receive without any judgement or worry can be quite powerful. As an entrepreneur, you have to find the balance between tending to your business and creating those periods of rest."
What do you love about the OKGNtech community?
"There is this source of hunger, passion, inspiration and community that OKGNtech exudes. Those were all of the qualities that I wanted to embody, so I was naturally drawn to it. Being in that community helped to immerse me in entrepreneurship."
What’s the best piece of advice you’ve ever received?
"I’ve had this advice from multiple people throughout various chapters of my life, “take care of yourself first.” I’m a giver, I like to help people. It's easy to want to focus on business all the time, however I find that magic happens when I’m actually resting and aligned with my spirit."
As an entrepreneur, what has been your biggest lesson so far?
"Patience, honestly. You always think it’s going to happen right away. You don't realize how much time and energy it takes to be able to create a successful business. It took 3 years to get to where I am now. If someone has a passion for something, start today. Don’t hesitate. I never would have guessed that, 10 years later after teaching myself tarot, I’d be having this conversation."