Young: Do what you love, love what you do

This week I share with you the story of two people who came together to build a business in the Okanagan.

How many of us can discover willingly the work we enjoy, gives us value and provides a pathway toward the realization of our entrepreneurial dream machine to be self-reliant?

It is but a select number of us that will take up the challenge of reaching out and striving to be the best that we may be on this Earth.

This week I share with you the story of two people who, by chance, came together in the Central Okanagan landscape, and have strived to be their best both individually and collectively in the health and beauty industry.

Janice Lawson, owner and founder of Serenity Aesthetics in West Kelowna Town Centre, was born in St. Catharines, Ont., and obtained a postsecondary education in the field she discovered early on that she loved— “helping people look and feel their best.”

From an early career beginning in the food and beverage industry, Lawson also had a stint as a successful snowboard instructor, another of her early life passions.

The genesis of her idea to become a self-employed entrepreneur took root during the 2 1/2 years she worked for another aesthetics studio in Kelowna.

That experience led her to launch Serenity from her home in 2007, still in Kelowna.

By this time, Lawson had married and starting her own family, so she recognized that sacrifice was an operative word while exploring the entrepreneurial world.

In 2009, after considerable industry training and valuable experience gained during the early years of her new venture, Lawson decided that West Kelowna was going to be an attractive location for her skin care venture, where she could showcase her skills while building the business and handling a part-time job at the same time as a wife and mother.

She moved her location a couple of times since, most recently last year when she relocated to her current spot on Main Street in West Kelowna Town Centre.

However, she also recognized she was missing an important element to her venture—a business partner to help share the workload.

In 2010 while Lawson was pregnant with her second child, she posted an ad for a potential partner. That is how she met Jessica Wenger, a local aesthetician who like as many young women in the Okanagan have found their way into the workforce through the food and beverage sector.

Wenger arrived at Lawson’s door, sharing a similar love for her industry.

Wenger was born in Switzerland and lived there with her family until she was age 8, when her family moved to Canada, settling in Salmon Arm.

Wenger’s parents had a bout of the entrepreneurial spirit in their early years as they operated a go-cart track and mini-golf operation.

In 2007 after graduating high school, Wenger moved to Kelowna where she began her journey in the skin care industry for three years in Kelowna,  complementing that training and skills development by working as a gym instructor as well.

When Wenger noticed Lawson’s newspaper ad for someone to join her, she was ready. There was no hesitation to embrace the career move to join Serenity.

Since then, the two friends have truly become partners in Serenity, expanding their services and sharing in the marketing demands to attract new clients.

Serenity Aesthetics provides a wide range of laser hair removal methodologies, waxing, tinting, pedicures and yes, even massages coupled with advanced skin care regimens.

The headline for this week’s column reflects as it reflects how so many of us don’t enjoy our careers and what we do for a living.

When you are able to work at something you enjoy and get paid for it, life is so much sweeter.

Keeping a roof over your head, paying the bills, getting side-tracked with our dreams, our secret wishes and desires can get in the way if we let it.

Feeling like you are stuck in that situation?  Well folks, perhaps there are reasons at the moment or circumstances that are tough to alter, but don’t let that interference permanently sidetrack you.

It might take time, but it’s worth the wait. Give yourself the chance.

Janice and Jessica have done that and it was a joy to meet these true Westside entrepreneurs.

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