I believe that people are here in order to make a bigger impact in the world — and with my book, ‘Make an Impact’, I had the chance to prove that hundreds of people are using their influence to improve other people’s lives.
As the founder of the Health Bloggers Community, my mission is to support people with growing their passion into a business — and so many women are building businesses empires all over the world.
This series is a chance to spotlight some of these women
“Mental health challenges do not need to define a person and hold control over his or her life in the way that they once did for me.”
Danielle Smith is the founder and CEO of Rooted Lyfe, the contemporary apothecary. Smith founded Rooted Lyfe after self-treating for anxiety with CBD and achieving breakthrough results. Rooted Lyfe simplifies the CBD experience by providing customers with accurate education and premium products they can trust.
The company’s ingredient list is as simple as its motto — No Junk. No BS — and third-party lab testing results are provided for every product. Smith continues to expand her reach by providing education on CBD in a variety of formats, including trade shows, industry events, community events and online webinars. She is a graduate of Stonehill College in Easton, Mass, where she majored in psychology and minored in business management.
Thank you so much for doing this with us! What is your ‘backstory’?
It’s not often that people find their purpose so early in life, but for me, the direction of my professional career turned on a strong desire to change from human resources to human possibilities, focused in particular on helping people live healthier and happier lives.
I struggled from an early age with anxiety and fear and began to turn against my medications when the side effects began to outweigh the benefits. I began searching for other answers to treat my stress and anxiety when one of my colleagues suggested CBD (cannabidiol).
At first, I was skeptical that a natural product could be helpful. I studied hard to learn everything I could about this new possibility and the more I read, the more I became convinced that CBD was worth trying. I was thrilled beyond words to find that this natural product could have such a positive impact on my anxiety. My panic attacks subsided, and my fear was replaced by calmness and confidence.
I can best describe my personal experience with CBD with one sentence: CBD has allowed me to be unapologetically ME.
My personal life challenges opened the door for me to understand more about myself and through that exploration, I found I was not alone. The more I shared my own personal challenges, the more I found myself learning from people just like me.
This experience, combined with my pursuit of helping others, is exactly why I committed myself to sharing the powerful benefits of CBD with others. I dove in full-throttle and surrounded myself with every bit of research and information I could find on CBD and its cultivation and processing. In addition, I aligned myself with a few chosen colleagues and advisers with the goal of developing the purest and most easily traceable CBD products on the market.
Rooted Lyfe is the brainchild of that journey: a company that fulfils my vision of creating wellness and happiness through the CBD products we create. My purpose is backed by a deep commitment to provide consumers with the highest levels of clarity, education and product understanding.
Can you share your top three “lifestyle tweaks” that you believe will help support people’s journey towards better well-being?
For years, I considered these three practices to be trivial, but each now plays a powerful role in my life: mindfulness, meditation, and journaling.
Just as with CBD, I assumed they would have a minimal impact on me, but in that same manner their effect has proved to be anything but. Incorporating new habits, especially when they take time out of an already busy day, felt overwhelming.
But by allowing myself a solid trial period of at least 30 days, I’ve grown to rely on these practices daily for mental health and clarity. This allows me to spend the rest of my day laser-focused and with renewed positivity.
What is the most interesting incident that happened to you since you started your career?
We had a customer reach out to share a success story that was completely unexpected. She began taking CBD to help her with anxiety and monitored her overall health and well-being during her journey.
Within days of beginning the supplement, she had an extraordinary and unexpected result that we have never heard before: She no longer needed her reading glasses! This may be explained by the reduction in inflammation in her eyes. Since that day, my Co-Founder, Sarah Cook, playfully describes CBD as providing a “grab bag of benefits” that are often unique to each individual.
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?
At the beginning, I was challenged on some of my decision-making by a person with differing opinions specific to both budgeting and hiring. I allowed that person to influence my decisions despite feeling internally conflicted on the results. My takeaway from that experience: Always trust your gut, and don’t be afraid to speak your truth! Only you know your business best.
When it comes to health and wellness, how is the work you are doing helping to make a bigger impact in the world?
By owning my anxiety and sharing my struggles in a public manner, I am working to help de-stigmatise mental illness. Mental health challenges do not need to define a person and hold control over his or her life in the way that they once did for me. I want to promote that healing message and encourage others to share their experiences, knowing that 1 in 5 Americans will experience their own mental health issues this year alone.
I also have a passion for de-stigmatising the cannabis plant (which includes hemp) to help others find relief from this plant-based alternative therapy. There are stereotypes we fight against every day based on “stoner culture,” but with real medicinal value, it is critical that we educate our community on the science behind why it is such a powerful plant and why it deserves a closer look without the fear-based beliefs that have prevailed in the past.
None of us are able to achieve success without some help along the way. Is there a particular person to whom you are grateful for helping get you to where you are?
I am incredibly grateful that my path crossed with Lori Ferrara’s a few years back when I was first beginning the entrepreneurial life. I was introduced to Lori by a mutual friend, and Lori took me under her wing without hesitation.
Being a female in the male-dominated cannabis industry can be challenging,
which Lori knows firsthand as one of the original ArcView members. She has always provided me a wealth of advice, connections, and confidence through her mentorship, and I can recall telling her that I wanted to “be her when I grow up” during one of our first meetings. Along with her sage business advice, she is also a mother of two beautiful children and continues to help me balance the demands of both family and business.
If you could start a movement that would bring the highest degree of wellness to the most amount of people, what would that be?
I would want to share a toolbox of anxiety-fighting, health-boosting practices to include meditation and yoga. These are simple enough practices that, once learned, can be done most anywhere and at any time to reduce stress. I would also like to see CBD wellness supplements available globally. With an internal system called the endocannabinoid system connected to every other major system in the body (circular, nervous, digestive, immune, etc.), supplementing it actually encourages internal homeostasis.
What are your ‘3 Things I Wish Someone Told Me Before I Started’ and why?
- Spend a minimal amount of money to find your MVP, or minimal viable product. You don’t need to build the company’s entire infrastructure without a proven product to sell.
- Don’t be afraid to ask for help. I struggled with this at the beginning because I didn’t want to “bother” people. Instead, what I have found is that not only are people willing to help, but most are happy to do so.
- Networking is critical to your success. Most of my key contacts were made this way, often referred to me by others with whom I had only brief conversations. In the same vein, pay this forward and offer to connect others when there is a mutual interest that could help someone else
Do you have a “girl-crush” in this industry? If you could take one “woman in wellness” to brunch to let her know how much you respect her as a teacher and guide, who would it be?
Gwyneth Paltrow is an incredible woman on an inspiring mission with her business, Goop. I admire the full life cycle of wellness that Goop promotes and find myself constantly resonating with Goop’s messaging and efforts in this space. I never miss an episode of The Goop Podcast and would love the opportunity to take Gwyneth to brunch!
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 is dearest to me. As someone who has struggled with mental health for my entire life, I internalised feelings of shame and embarrassment and hid my true self for far too long. I lived in fear of judgement and strove for perfection with little to no self-compassion. By sharing those exact feelings, I’ve found strength from within to overcome those demons. Now, I feel a calling to help others do the same.
You can Follow Danielle on LinkedIn, Facebook and Instagram @daniseekspeace and @rootedlyfe
About the author:
Fab Giovanetti is a business mentor, published author, influencer-specialist, best known as the founder of the Health Bloggers Community and co-founder of the Register of Health and Wellness Influencers.
Serial start-up founder and professional troublemaker, she is obsessed with avocados and helping people making an impact in health and wellness. Sounds like you? Get daily tips on how to grow your influence via the HBC magazine.