DALLAS — Starting a business is a challenge, but for two North Texas women it has been more like a battle due to the COVID-19 pandemic.
Five weeks after opening, the pandemic forced "Breathe Meditation & Wellness" to close. But a pandemic hasn't been their only setback.
"My computer shut down. We had a hacking in our bank account," says Chelsey Charbeneau.
Breathe co-founders Chelsey Charbeneau and Jenn Moulaison agree, the universe is testing them.
"The day Jenn called me to let me know she tested positive for cancer, my dog died an hour later," Charbeneau said.
Moulaison's breast cancer diagnosis was a stunner and put two years of preparation on pause.
"I think I learned through meditation you have to feel every emotion, you can't linger with it because if you linger with stress it turns into anxiety," said Jenn Moulaison.
I think most people understand feeling anxious these days and your mental attitude has an impact on your physical health.
It's a big reason Jenn and Chelsey are slowly reopening. Their wellness center offers a lot more than guided meditation, including holistic nutrition and massage.
"Leaning on each other, we do it every day. We have the best partnership, we're the ying to each other's yang. We're great compliments to each other," said Charbeneau.
They also respect one another. They warn other entrepreneurs considering going into a business partnership to rely on trust; even if they don't work the same way as their partner, they're working toward the same goal.
"If you recognize in a partner, any partner, their strengths, their personal passions, what's important to them and honor that; it's a give and take back and forth especially in the building process," said Moulaison.
The two women have been building something entirely new during quarantine.
"We were building a virtual meditation platform on the back end so we now have a virtual studio for 'Breathe at Home' and we have a library of fifty or sixty meditations. All of our instructors would come in one by one and be filmed in the studio and then we can offer that to our clients and others online," Moulaison says.
Pivoting means breaking out of your mold and using the time you do have productively.
Daybreak Anchor Kara Sewell asked for advice from the two women, who have proven to be resilient.
"I would say make sure you're aligned with your passion and purpose because if you are it's a lot easier to stay on that road and to stay focused," said Charbeneau.