We asked some of the brightest folks in the community to open up to us about the most important lesson their business or career has taught them. We’ve highlighted some of those responses below.

Ashley Boynton | Licensed Psychologist

As a licensed psychologist, I am fortunate to have a career that teaches me lessons constantly. The lessons I learn from my work help me grow as a person, a partner, and a citizen of this world. I have an incredible job in that people choose to share their hopes, dreams, secret thoughts, anger, fears, and deepest sadness with me, and in getting to know my clients on a deep level I also learn about myself. While it’s impossible for me to identify the most important lesson I have learned, one lesson I continue to come back to has to do with finding a balance between humility and strength. This shows up often when I am doing therapy: I can never presume to know everything about my clients’ worlds, and often listening with compassion and curiosity leads us to powerful insights and healing. At the same time, my clients come to me because I am an expert in my field, and often rely on my asking the right questions or offering accurate insights. Read more>>

Elyssa Monet | Creative Solopreneur & Wellness Advocate

The most important lesson I’ve learned in both my career path, and starting my own business; is that no one has it all figured out. When we look at other people’s success, we forget about all the trial and tribulations that helped them get there. That at one point they also had no idea of what they were doing. It’s okay to not know. There may be times where I have one thing nailed down — like marketing, and times where I know nothing — like funding. It’s also important to have a team, or a community or a network to lean on. As I mentioned, no ONE has it all figured out but we can all make contributions for the things that we DO know. Read more>>

Katie Hedrick | CEO and Owner of Colorado Tech Shop and Colorado Tech Staffing

The most important lesson I have learned from running my two businesses these past 5+ years is that more often than not, really difficult times or something that initially looks like it could ruin you, actually turn out to be blessing in disguise. Many, many situations that have presented as “terrible”, I later realize were just the impetus I needed in order to make a big change, to take a chance,to be more profitable or successful. Humans rarely learn important lessons from easy or ‘good’ times. Humans tend to coast more often than not, when things finally get good, when you are profitable and things are running smoothly. However, when you start to coast, I think you tend to stop growing, stop taking as many risks, stop innovating. The unfortunate fact, is that most people learn and grow more, during times of high stress and pain is the swiftest teacher of all, be it physical, mental or emotional pain. Pain can get the point across in a hurry. Read more>>

Kelly Hollins + Lisa Cohen | Co-Creators @ Good Clean Food

One of our favorite lessons in business: For us, this is one of the most important lessons, and also one of the hardest to grasp: You can not succeed without failure. Culture teaches us that failure is bad. We are conditioned to believe that the goal is – to avoid failure, When you are in school, if you fail, it means you didn’t do well, you didn’t succeed – you did not pass, you are not moving forward. In the business world, conversely, if (and when) you fail it means you have just been handed the biggest opportunity for growth and learning. When you’re frozen by the fear of failing, you hinder your growth as a person, and your business momentum. Not every idea we have had has been good. Not every decision we have made has been successful. Not every negotiation has gone well for us. We have learned to accept that failure is inevitable, and approach every situation as a learning opportunity. When you can accept failure as a gift, it can catapult you forward. Read more>>

Paula Romero | Artisan

Definitely to be truth to. Read more>>

Aspen Somers | Actress, Writer & Producer

It’s a bit cliche, but I think the most important lesson I’ve learned is to make lemonade out of lemons. I’d always heard people say this, but I have really begun to understand what they meant over the past year. When the COVID-19 shutdown first started last March, I was certain I wouldn’t work on anything for many months. I was devestated; shows I was already rehearsing for and projects I had been counting down the days for were all cancelled. After a couple weeks of being disappointed, I started to understand that I needed to either stop feeling sorry for myself or do something to change my situation. I wrote a radio play for a local theatre company to raise money for an artist’s relief fund and took a role on a remotely-filmed feature by a director I had previously worked with. After seeing how others were making things work, I started brainstorming what I could do. I had always heard about how actors should create their own work, but I never had; I didn’t even know where to start. Read more>>

Kaley Alie | Acrylic Artist & Stationery Designer

I think one of the best things that my creative business has taught me is to be 100% myself. As an artist it is easy to compare yourself and your work to others. It can be a slippery slope when you are inspired by someone else’s style or artwork. It can be easy to judge yourself, your brand, your style. These feelings can make it difficult to be yourself. On the other hand inspiration from others can be so beneficial at pushing boundaries or providing ideas, but at the end of the day it is so important to remember to stay true to yourself. Success with art is because people are buying the happiness that is reflected through your work. I have learned that by staying true to myself, I can build a successful and cheerful brand. Read more>>