If you had the chance to write a letter to yourself as a first year graduate to share your top insights about what you’d learnt throughout your career, what would you say? This edition we asked the co-owner of Perfect Potion Carolyn Stubbin to share her most valuable lessons with her younger self.
Your journey will be unique. While you will be inspired by and learn from many people your path will be your own. You will be the Creative Director of your own aromatherapy and natural skin care company, Perfect Potion and, while you love surprises, I think you’ll be interested to know the following.
You are incredibly privileged. How many people in this world will have the opportunity you have just had to spend time studying the phenomenon that is the human body... learning how to use the rich resources that nature provides to nourish, heal and sustain us while sharing in the experience and insights gained by those who are your teachers and fellow students? The knowledge you have gained will serve as the basis for understanding what natural skin care products should be, what they should do for the skin and how they are an important part of caring for our wellbeing.
You will never stop learning. You will return to study beauty therapy to gain a deeper understanding of how the skin functions and learn techniques that encourage a healthy vibrant skin. You will go on to complete a degree in cosmetic science so that you can formulate your own skin care range.
You will love sharing the information and experiences you have picked up along the way. You will write a book on how to make your own natural skin care preparations, Do It Yourself Pure Plant Skin Care, and run workshops teaching others how to make their own.
You will work with an amazing team of people who share their journeys with you. You will love seeing people grow and develop, sharing their talents and passions.
There will be mistakes, disappointments, challenges but you will continue to be blessed time and time again.
You will go to Palestine and find out what life is like living under military occupation. You will meet Nasser Abufarha, who established Canaan Fair Trade, and make an ongoing commitment to purchase the certified organic olive oil produced by this Palestinian farming collective to use in Perfect Potion skin care products. It will become clear that people need and want to make a living based on what they produce rather than relying on aid handouts.
You will meet and work with many amazing souls who want to contribute to making this a better world. You will love being part of cultural festivals such as the Festival of Tibet and the Iraqi Festival. These celebrations bring the local community into contact with cultures that enrich our own and open their eyes to the history and political situation experienced by people who are part of these cultures.
You will find out there are many things you cannot learn in a classroom, read in a book about or find on the internet, especially about yourself. You will discover them only by stepping out into the world, taking risks and being curious about new places, people and experiences. Opening stores in Japan will allow you to experience the rich history and culture of Japan, learn a new language and make rich and nourishing friendships.
At other times you will wonder why you keep going over the same path only to gradually realise there was something you missed that you needed to see. There will be times when you will be overwhelmed by inspiration and ideas while at others you will learn to rest, be patient, be empty of ideas. Life is a paradox.
You learn there are times when you need to be flexible while at other times you will not compromise your values and will stand your ground. You will not allow your skin care products to be tested on animals just so that you can sell into China. You learn to trust your intuition, which leads you in the right direction.
Much of your life will be lived hand in hand with those you love so be thankful to them and, remember to count your blessings and realise that you are part of something bigger. There is so, so, so much more to share and not wanting to spoil the surprise too much, you will be opening a brand new shop very soon.
Carolyn Stubbin, along with Salvatore Battaglia, is the Co-owner and Creative Director of Perfect Potion – an Australian owned company, which makes certified natural and organic aromatherapy and skin care products in Brisbane. Perfect Potion has stores in Australia and Japan and distributes into Southeast Asia. Carolyn studied natural therapies and beauty therapy at Endeavour College of Natural Health with further degrees in cosmetic science and photography.
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