Women In Wellness: Anne Ruozzi of Therapy Clean On The Five Lifestyle Tweaks That Will Help Support People’s Journey Towards Better Wellbeing
An Interview With Candice Georgiadis
Learn to listen to your gut. This takes self-work and constant practice. Your inner wisdom, your own higher self, your intuition (or, however you want to call it!) are the compass in your journey and will give you the answers if you listen.
As a part of my series about the women in wellness, I had the pleasure of interviewing Anne Ruozzi.
Anne Ruozzi is the co-founder and CEO of Therapy Clean, a line of efficient and safe plant-based cleaners. She is originally from Venezuela and currently lives in New England with her husband (and co-founder) and their two kids.
Thank you so much for joining us in this interview series! Our readers would love to “get to know you” better. Can you share your “backstory” with us?
I was born and raised in Caracas, Venezuela during the 1970s and 80s, and graduated from Boston University in the late 90s. My first job out of college was with a luxury consumer brand in Boston in the personal care space. It was my first exposure to a startup environment, and I absolutely fell in love with the rush of bootstrapping our way up and the feeling of being a part of something bigger than myself. That exhilarating rush marked me deeply, although the pay was negligible.
Eventually, the lack of a substantial income took a toll on me, and I entered the corporate world selling IT equipment for a Fortune 500 company in New Hampshire. Being in sales taught me a lot! I strongly believe that any successful person, at their core, is a successful salesperson. Cold calling was not a process I particularly enjoyed; but it taught me invaluable lessons that I still practice today.
Fast forward a few years, and I knew I needed to venture out on my own. So, I quit my job and took the leap into the unknown. Less than one month later, I met my now husband while skiing, and he was just starting a business as well. We partnered together to create Eco Touch, Inc, the parent company to Therapy Clean. For over 12 years, we have created three companies, two beautiful kids and one loving family.
Can you share the most interesting story that happened to you since you started your career? What were the main lessons or takeaways from that story?
The first five years in business were very tough! We struggled financially, we didn’t (or, at least, we thought we didn’t) have a lot of access to resources. The economy was crumbling around us, and we feared our company would go down too. Our first son was born amidst all this chaos, which added to the pressure we were already putting on ourselves. We didn’t know how to manage our stress and took every blow personally. At that point, we viewed failure as a terrible thing. It was not until we hit rock bottom, filing for bankruptcy and living on food stamps that we felt the need to look inward for answers to change the course we were on.
I believe that to succeed at any endeavor in life, there needs to be a good dose of self-reflection. We went through a process of eliminating paralyzing limiting beliefs, of getting attuned with our higher self, a higher purpose, our intuition. I learned that once you relinquish the need to control, you will find the path (or paths!) of amazing fulfillment. It may sound hokey to some people but to me, spirituality and business go hand in hand.
Can you share a story about the biggest mistake you made when you were first starting? Can you tell us what lesson you learned from that?
The biggest mistake in starting a business was not being mentally prepared for the ups and downs. It is fun to think about the possibilities, but it takes courage and a positive mindset to overcome the inevitable bumps along the way. It took me a few years to realize that mistakes and rejections were actually beautiful gifts that we could learn from.
Another mistake that took years for me to learn was believing that I could do it all by myself. This mindset became very isolating and ended up stifling the growth of our company for some time. I had to unlearn the belief that I could make every aspect of the business work alone and start to lean on those around me to achieve our goals and avoid burning out!
Let’s jump to our main focus. When it comes to health and wellness, how is the work you are doing helping to make a bigger impact in the world?
I believe that no matter what industry, what type of business or what position you are in, there are ways to use your vocation toward helping others. The moment you realize this potential, your work begins to have purpose. In the case of Therapy Clean, there are several ways we contribute to the greater health and wellness in society. With a brand name like ‘Therapy’, we believe we can contribute to humanity by enhancing the performance of everyday products. Not only will consumers rest assured that our formulas are plant-based and sustainable, but our new line of All Purpose and Dish Soap cleaners are also formulated to be mood-enhancing through aromatherapy. We have scientific data through FMRI that shows how different parts of the brain light up when customers smell the aromas in our products. We purposely chose ones that uplift, elicit calmness and promote bliss.
It seems trivial, but there are numerous studies that show that walking into a clean and organized home calms the senses. In a world that can feel chaotic at times, it is important to pay attention to your space and how it supports your mental health and wellbeing.
Another important way we add to wellness in this world is by partnering with organizations such as The Child Mind Institute in NYC. They are a great resource for anxious kids as they specialize in educating parents and transforming children’s mental health. A portion of our proceeds are donated to them, and I anticipate us contributing more around naturally-derived medicine for mental health in the future.
Can you share your top five “lifestyle tweaks” that you believe will help support people’s journey towards better wellbeing? Please give an example or story for each.
- Sacred hour. Meditate, journal, exercise first thing in the morning. Morning nutrition for your brain and your body. Protect this like it’s your life!
- View failure as a wonderful gift. Nothing will make you a better person than learning from your failures. It makes life a lot better when you look at it this way, too.
- Invest in yourself. Read all you can, listen to podcasts, attend seminars that will help you get to the better version of yourself. Learning doesn’t end in college. An investment in yourself will offer one of the highest ROIs.
- Surround yourself with people who are better than you, that elevate you and challenge you to become a better person. Keep toxic people at bay by setting boundaries. Clean your social media feed of negative or toxic people in your life and replace them with messages of encouragement and growth.
- Learn to listen to your gut. This takes self-work and constant practice. Your inner wisdom, your own higher self, your intuition (or, however you want to call it!) are the compass in your journey and will give you the answers if you listen.
If you could start a movement that would bring the most amount of wellness to the most amount of people, what would that be?
I think there is a lot of work to be done within the medical field. We are still in diapers, in the birth canal, of plant medicine. Our society has become so dependent on big Pharma and their medicine, especially when it comes to areas of mental health, anxiety and depression. There is a new frontier to explore there. For us, Therapy Clean can become a lifestyle brand of household and personal care products that support wellness and uplift people’s moods and lives through the quality ingredients that we use. This is my mission.
What are your “5 Things I Wish Someone Told Me Befo re I Started” and why?
- If you want your company to succeed, you must work on yourself as much as the company. Personal growth goes hand in hand with the growth of your company.
- Don’t be afraid to fail. Failure is a wonderful opportunity to learn, grow, and improve yourself and your company.
- Read Never Eat Alone by Keith Ferrazzi. It will show you how authentic networking opens so many necessary doors. I stumbled upon this book 10 years into our business and it was life-changing for me.
- Always hire people who are better than you at what they do. Before you know it, you will be spending your energy doing what you love and moving the company forward with a lot less effort.
- Have a solid board of advisors. If you can’t have them in person, then make up an imaginary one. My imaginary board of advisors consists of many different people, including Tony Robbins, Sarah Blakely, Richard Branson, Elon Musk, Jamie Kern, Vishen Lackiani and Jeffrey Allen. Whenever I need to make a tough decision, I imagine asking each of them what they would in my position and the answers just appear. It’s pretty cool!
Sustainability, veganism, mental health and environmental changes are big topics at the moment. Which one of these causes is dearest to you, and why?
Mental health and personal wellness seem to be the next frontier to me. Up until recently, there has been a lot of taboo around the topic of Mental Health, yet everyone must deal with their mental health every single day. There are tools out there which are free for people to use — if they only knew about them. I see a lot of research being done from a natural healing perspective on ways to tackle the root cause of mental health issues without solely depending on pharmaceutical drugs that merely numb your senses. Things like psilocybin and cannabis are proving to be very effective in helping humans with mental health struggles. As a mother of anxious kids, this is an important topic for me and one that I follow closely. In fact, considering the name of the company is ‘Therapy Clean’, we are lending ourselves to support and donate to organizations such as The Child Mind Institute, which focus on educating parents of children with anxiety.
What is the best way our readers can follow you online?
You can follow me on Instagram at @anneruozzi and Therapy Clean at @therapyclean.
Thank you for these fantastic insights!