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Inventing cannabis infused tampons & reimagining women’s health with Daye Founder Valentina Milanova

Updated: Aug 24, 2021

Joining me on the show today is Valentina Milanova, Founder of Daye - the company that’s reimagining women’s health.

Daye is a female health company bridging the gaps in healthcare through medical research and innovation.

They exist to raise the standards of gynae health by creating effective products and services that fit conveniently into woman’s lives. Right now they have two groundbreaking products available; the naked tampon and the CBD coated tampon to help with period cramps - and yes I’ve tried them, and yes my period was amazing and I’ll be using these from now on!

In this episode we cover how Valentina pushed past the critics and naysayers to bring her vision into a reality, her thoughts on working with agencies vs building an in-house team, and how she got a 20,000 person waitlist before launch with steps on what you can do to get started too.

Please note, this transcript has been copy pasted without the lovely touch of a human editor. Please expect some typos!

Speaker3: So I'm Valentina. I'm the founder of Daye. In 2017, I first had the concept for pain relieving temple and over the past three and a half years I've been working to complete Finckel validation, build a theme and launch our first products to market. And they as a company where a female health research and development company currently based out of the biscuit factory in Bermondsey, where we have all of our machinery and design engineering, and we introduced our first two products. So the naked, hyper absorbent tampon that's free from any nasty chemicals package, sustainably sanitized to prevent the risk of toxic shock syndrome and the pain relieving tampon. So that's our tampon that has a cannabinoid coating which is absorbed to the vegetable mucosa. And that's how we're able to produce the pain relieving effect for our users. So as a company, we exist to we have the thing internally. We want to bridge the gender gap in medical research and innovation. A lot of people don't know that the gender gap in medical research and innovation even exists in the first place. We have a lot of information about the gender pay gap or other forms of gender discrimination against people who identify as women.

Speaker3: But one of the biggest pain points that exists in front of us as people with vaginas and female reproductive organs is that there hasn't been enough research into products that work for us. One super easy example. So, again, I just recently changed its prescription guidelines for ibuprofen because it turns out the two hundred and fifty milligrams recommended dose works for the male physiology, but not for the female physiology. So for the female physiology, you need eight hundred milligrams for the effects to kick in, which we've known anecdotally for a long time, because we hear a lot of women say, you know, when I'm on my period, they both ibuprofen as if it's Tic-Tac, I go to a whole pack. And that's because the way that the medication was designed and the way that it was tested was only focusing on the male physiology. So that's something that we want to rectify is a business. We want to create an engine of product innovation within the company that allows us to build and launch products that are effective, safe, designed for women.

Speaker1: Wow. That is just so mind blowing and crazy. I think I also read somewhere on your website or on your social media that it wasn't until nineteen ninety three that women could even be part of medical trials, which seems so recent.

Speaker3: Yeah. I mean nineteen ninety three was when the FDA made it illegal for researchers to not include women in studies for medications that were going to be administered to both sexes. So that's when people started, including women in their clinical trials. But a lot of the medications that we have readily available right now were developed and launched before nineteen ninety three. So most of the sleeping aids that we have, most of the painkillers, most antibiotics, they were developed and launched before nineteen ninety three. So they were never tested on the female physiology, which is why again, anecdotally we know of women reacting really severely to certain sleeping medications and having really intense sleepwalking experiences because of them. So part of the work I guess we do a they is also advocacy with regulatory bodies where we try and highlight the inadequacies that exist in the way that female health care is provided and obtained at present so that we can shine light on this issue and hopefully garner support for it being fixed.

Speaker1: Gosh, that's incredible. Wow. Holy moly. That is all just bananas.

Speaker3: Shocking and depressing, but there is a light at the end of the tunnel.

Speaker1: Yes. I'm so glad you're tackling it. Thank goodness for you. Oh, my God,

Speaker3: You're too kind.

Speaker1: And I have to say just quickly before I keep going on, I just tried your well, I tried both the naked tampons and the CBD tampons. And I have to say I had a pretty good period.

Speaker3: I'd love to hear them.

Speaker1: I was grateful.

Speaker3: Oh, you're too kind. But some of the feedback that we get most commonly about days, I'm so looking forward to my next period. I'm so excited now to have my period because I have the tools that I need to manage it in a way that works for myself. And we very much want to design the product with this goal in mind that people will be looking forward to their periods and they would be looking forward to the experience of obtaining female health care. But we also designed the packaging so that it looks like it's a little gift from yourself to yourself that you receive every month and why? Why do we have to have such negative connotations around menstruation? It could be positioned in a really positive way, especially women have the tools to prevent pain or to prevent tampon leaks. So if you I don't know what your experience has been with our packaging, but we aim to produce this moment of joy when you open your box and just like a little reward from yourself to yourself.

Speaker1: I mean, I can definitely tell you I had a big moment of joy when I saw your packaging. And it's definitely on my list of things for us to talk about, especially once we get into marketing. I think your branding is just so phenomenal and so much fun. I really, really enjoy everything that you're doing in that regard for sure. But I want to go back and get started at the very beginning, pre twenty, seventeen pre day. What was happening in your life that got you interested in starting your own business and the light bulb moment for this vision?

Speaker3: Yeah, interestingly, I never saw myself as an entrepreneur. I never exhibited that I was going to become a founder or business owner. In fact, my father was an entrepreneur and he had moments of severe income uncertainty in his life, which obviously impacted the rest of the family. So I always thought entrepreneurship was probably one of the worst things that you could get into when I was growing up. But at the same time, I was somewhat unfortunate when I was growing up to face a lot of challenges. So when I was nine, I had my first period and I was too young for anyone to have had a conversation with me around what changes my body was going through and and what menstruation even meant. So when I had my first period, I went into absolute panic because I thought I had some disease. And I don't know if you remember your first period, but it doesn't look like blood. It's kind of brownish in color, which is exactly the kind of thing that no one tells you. I mean, even if someone had had the talk with me, I don't suppose they would have said it would look different than blood. And it has a different consistency as well. So I was like, oh, my God, what a shameful disease. What has happened to me? I'm curse by the gods. And also my peers were extremely painful. So what I was experiencing then as a child was these bouts of pain and bouts of weird vaginal discharge. I didn't feel comfortable bringing this up with anyone, not even with my own mother, because I felt so ashamed by what was happening to my vagina.

Speaker3: So for about a year, I kept having my period to complete secrets from anyone. And I didn't realize that it was happening every month because I didn't expect it to be happening every month. I just thought it was like random bouts of this horrible disease, which would be from going to school because I was in so much pain, I just had to sit in the box. That was the only thing that helped. Medication wouldn't help. So then a year in having my period, my breasts started developing, which is another thing that no one talks about, really awkward experience. They're very painful. And also it's usually the left or the right that come in first. They don't develop simultaneously. They're not symmetrical. So I had started developing my breasts. And then one morning I wake up and I go down to our living room and I switch on the TV and there's a morning show program about how to give yourself a self breast examination. So I proceed to give myself a self breast examination. The tiny breasts that I have, they felt like lumps. So what I was hearing being described on TV is a lump that you should check for was what I was feeling on my chest. So I convinced myself that this mysterious disease with the vaginal discharge in the vein, I also had breast cancer. And that's what gave me the impetus to go and speak to my dad and try and seek help for my quote unquote, breast cancer.

Speaker1: So young to be going through all of this

Speaker3: Horrible first period experience. And then when I was older, so when I was 15, I later found out that I had because I had a number of this on my ovaries. Another thing that people don't tell you about this. So, you know, some seats are filled with liquid, but other seats are filled with hair and teeth because you yourself go crazy. So they make hair and teeth. And if you can imagine, they're hard. So it's pressing against your ovary, producing a lot of pain. And I spent the entire grade, so I was between 15 and 16 when this was happening. I spent nine months of the school year in bed just completely incapable to move, going to like various doctors, a doctor, double checking whether I had a kidney infection or a yeast infection, whether I had stomach problems, and no one could tell me what was going on. So I later found out when I had to have emergency surgery because people told. Or maybe it's appendicitis, let's just take for appendicitis, it's this girl's in way too much pain. So then when they opened my lower abdomen for appendicitis, they realized, oh, wow, she also has these, like, crazy system, her ovaries, which then had to be removed. So this was another really disempowering, traumatizing experience. The female that I had when I was growing up. And I guess this was the part of my personal story that

Speaker1: Really

Speaker3: Formed the seed inside of my really core being that made me constantly think about, OK, how can I educate myself about female health? How can I become the person who has with every single research paper so that I can have an educated conversation with my doctor? If I sense that they're not providing me with the care that I need, how can I incentivize them to do that by just being very knowledgeable around the time when I form the habit of just reading lots of research papers, I subscribe to PubMed and start getting newsletters to my inbox with various research papers that were coming up on topics that I found interesting. Yeah, that's my personal experience that inspired me to found the company. But I always found it

Speaker1: Really

Speaker3: Challenging to call myself founder and CEO. I always thought that should douchy thing to say, OK, I'm just the person that had the original idea for the company. It's still hard for me to see myself as an entrepreneur. I still don't think I fully fit the mold.

Speaker1: Wow. Goodness, that is such a journey to have gone on to plant that seed. And so in was it twenty sixteen potentially when you decided to actually start the business and put together a product and a team and build out this vision. Was it twenty sixteen around about then.

Speaker3: So in twenty seventeen I was doing an evening MBA course in order to graduate we had to come up with a business idea that was going to be socially impactful. So I started researching the geographical area of northern Bulgaria. So I'm originally from Bulgaria and Bulgaria and I thought that if I, I knew northern Bulgaria was a very impoverished region. So I don't if I could come up with the business idea that would somehow revitalize that region, then by virtue of doing that, it would be socially impactful and I would have fulfilled my MBA task. So I started reading into the history of Bulgaria and what that area had traditionally been good. As any turns out, it's growing industrial hemp. So before the communist takeover in the 40s, northern Bulgaria was the largest European producer and exporter of industrial hemp, and it had an industrial hemp research center that was based there. And it was a Bulgarian scientist that initially synthesized cannabinoids. So I uncovered this like really rich but forgotten history of hemp research in the Bulgarian National Library. So, again, I just turned to my habit of reading research papers about industrial hemp with the view of creating a business concept that I presented my MBA class and move on with my life. My educational background is in law and economics. So I always imagined myself, you know, working as a journalist or working in a thinktank policy was something that I always found really interesting. So I never thought I was going to be a founder or an entrepreneur.

Speaker3: And reading about the properties of industrial hemp, there were two of them that really stuck with me. The first one being that hemp is one of the most absorbent natural fibers and that the extract from the flower CBD has potentially pain relieving effects. So and those were just two of many properties that I read about hemp. But those two really stuck with me. And this idea was born in my mind around combining the two of them and forming one product, which would be a more absorbent vein relieving temple. Initially, my journey was that I started sharing this idea with people around me when I gave my MBA presentation. It was dead silence in the room. People had their eyes wide open. Why are you talking about tampons? This is so bizarre. No one wants to hear about tampons like Taboo. This is a proper MBA. Yeah. Why is she doing that? She should have just presented some kind of an IP business. This is ridiculous. Who is this weirdo? And then I started sharing my concept with my friends, with people at work and people say, look, first of all, don't talk about tampons. It's uncomfortable. Don't do that. Second of all, if this was a good idea, Procter and Gamble would have invented already. But why do you think that you're so special that you would come up with something that the research massive research teams of Procter and Gamble wouldn't have considered already? So that really discouraged, gosh,

Speaker1: So many critics. Holy moly.

Speaker3: Yeah, that scares me hard.

Speaker1: Was this something that kind of powered you through or did you stop meeting people who were like, OK, I see it and I get it?

Speaker3: No, I wish I could. Say that the gear kept pestering me, so it was always in the back of my mind, it just wouldn't leave my head space. So then I decided, OK, well, you can still work on a company or on a product without letting people know. So what I decided to do was to just quietly start developing this regional product idea so that I could see whether I could make anything of it. And at that point, I moved back to London. I took a job in like early stage venture capital, which allowed me to have a little subsidy every month that I could dedicate to product development. I also live in Bayswater so I could spend my weekends in organic on West Palm Grove and I could just observe people around the dump on aisle and I could see their behavior. I could ask them questions. So late 2017, early 2018, I was working on the product development, the clinical validation of the IP securing the supply chain. I wasn't thinking about the brand yet because I was hoping that I was going to be able to partner with one of the large companies like Kimberly-Clark or Procter and Gamble or was was emailing every temple manufacturer that I could find on the Internet.

Speaker3: I was sending them handwritten notes saying, please work with me. I think this is a good idea. And the only reason why we ended up building our own machinery in-house, creating our own production was because no one, none of the temple manufacturers wanted to work with us. So that was early. Two thousand and eighteen. By the summer of 2019, we have preliminary clinical trial results, which were really positive. I was funding all of this on credit cards. So by the end of it, I had forty seven thousand pounds worth of credit card debt on. I started fundraising and then the way that I started fundraising because I worked in a really early stage venture capital firm, which people often think that that's how I had contacts in the investor world. But that's not really the case because I was a lowly associate and my job was to look for companies for this fund to invest in. So the way that I fundraise, really unconventional. You know, everyone says don't message to investors on LinkedIn, try and find a warm introduction. But the way in which I fund raise because I didn't have any warm introductions was by going on LinkedIn and that being investor venture capitalists and seeing what kind of people came up and then just sending the messages.

Speaker3: And initially I pitched Angels' technology accelerators, really anyone that would listen. And this experience was very humbling because people did not understand the business. And the most common question that I got was people saying, is this some kind of a charity that you keep talking about sustainability, you keep talking about social purpose. Is there a business in what you're trying to sell us here? But this whole process did allow me to perfect my pitch and also perfect certain elements of the business model and the way that everything was presented. So, yeah, and then in autumn 2013, we got our first term sheet. I signed it. And that's how we had our first venture capital investment, which was really shortly after, followed by another one from a US investor. And this allowed me to start building out the team because until then I was a solo person company. So this capital is what allowed me to start building the brand, start building the team, come up with a name for the company, things like that.

Speaker1: Wow. Goodness, that's such a journey. I'm so interested to understand a little bit more in terms of, you know, in the beginning you kept having all these people push back on you and be like, yeah, don't get it, don't get the idea. So you never really validated it. First, you would just like on that relentless pursuit of building something that you had an intuitive sense would be a game changer for women. At what point did you start, you know, finding your tribe in terms of women who were like, I want that, I need it?

Speaker3: I think when the idea was a bit more fleshed out, I mean, people were pretty split. Like on the one side, I would get people saying, what is this ridiculousness? Stop talking. And then on the other side, predominantly women, I would think have that makes total sense. Pain relieving companies like why hasn't someone come up with that already? So the feedback that I was getting, especially when once I had started developing my narrative around the company, the feedback became more and more positive, more and more encouraging. But we have an amazing community team within the company which has now translated that initial sentiment into a really large group of people, predominantly in the UK, who understand our mission, understand our vision like the product, and want to support the places where we're going.

Speaker1: Right. Got it. This is a nice Segway into the marketing side of things, which I really want to speak to about and dive in. To what you did around your launch strategy, I think I read that you created a wait list of about twenty thousand people and within your first week you had over a thousand customers and you were really able to amplify your message in a big way. Are you able to talk through what you did to get those kind of numbers and the costs involved and the time involved and things like that?

Speaker3: Yeah, absolutely. So I started getting on the waitlist really early on. So it was when I had my full time job, it was before I fundraise. So, oh, I remember a friend of mine was working in the Financial Times and they were working on an article around female entrepreneurship. And she asked me, do you want to join or do you want to be interviewed? I was like, Yeah, of course I want to be interviewed in the Financial Times. I know this would be a massive boost for this tiny thing that I'm working on. So the evening before the article came out, I realized I don't have a website. There's no way that if people want to sign up to something, there's nothing that they can sign up to. So I stayed up all night working on this website, which had a little bit about the product, and it showed people how they could sign up to the waitlist. And through that we got a tiny amount of weight faster. So the way in which we really scaled our waitlist was not a referral mechanic. So that is now currently working for us in terms of acquiring new subscribers. But it did not work for us when we were building our way. What really worked for us was paid marketing on Instagram and Facebook. So we had the cost of acquisition of about so between 50 P and one pound to acquire people's email addresses.

Speaker3: And when I say acquire people's email addresses, I mean gather their interest and have them sign up to be notified when the product dropped and also start getting the word out about the products out there in the brand out there. We also started investing in really early on. So the first time we ever launched was our blog, which now has become one of the richest libraries of female content of lithos. That was a really great way for us to build engagement with our community before we had a physical product to offer. And then we had about four percent of our way to convert when we opened the subscription in February. And then slowly, more and more people started coming in. It was a really weird time to launch a product. It was right in the height of the cold pandemic. We had all of these big plans around a press campaign and a PR dinner and a launch event that was going to be curated. And we were going to have these beautiful exhibitions of our machines and how we produced the date. And but those never came to fruition. And 2020 was a really, really, really rough year for us as a business. We had a number of people contract with within the company.

Speaker3: A number of people lose parents to quit within the company. So, yeah, pretty hard. We also were supposed to raise our next round. So the first round was raising two thousand and eighteen and twenty. Twenty was always going to be the year in which we raised Follow-On funding. We did not do that before the pandemic hit and then after the pandemic we became really, really hard. So from a financial perspective, we no longer had marketing budgets to experiment with. We had marketing budgets to be really efficient with, which is why, again, we focused on Instagram and Facebook. We had really good cost of user acquisition. We also started investing in a referral program. So we built a two sided referral program similar to what Airbnb has, where you refer a friend, they get five pounds of you get five pounds off your next books. That's worked pretty well for about twenty five percent of new users every month come from the referral program. We also build an ambassador program for people like gynecologist's GP's, stay at home mothers, students, influencers. Anyone that was excited by the vision for day and by the product could have a unique code to which they could generate sales and then they will get four pounds per sale directly translated into their bank account.

Speaker1: Oh, wow.

Speaker3: Yeah. And we also we did a lot of small optimizations. We hired an outside expert to come in and do an audit of our website and give us tips on how we could increase our performance. Within twenty twenty, we rose from four thousand unique visits per month to over one hundred thousand unique visits from.

Speaker1: Wow. Oh my gosh, that's great. Thank you. It's interesting in hindsight when your plans obviously go to shit essentially and you'll like, OK, we wanted to share the machinery, we wanted to do these pop ups in those things. Couldn't happen, but then I also wonder if it forces you to really double down on specifically what's working and scaling those things and maybe it works out for the better. Do you think you'll still do those kind of ideas further later into this year or next year?

Speaker3: Yeah, no, definitely. I mean, we're really excited for a world where people can meet in person again. Another thing that we did before covid, we had this community reachout event called Held for Breakfast, where we would go into the offices of large corporates or startups. CALIPSO, we went to like the offices of Facebook, Monzo, Silicon Valley Bank, and we would give a presentation on a hot topic and female Hult, and we would again give people the opportunity to ask one of our resident doctors any questions that they had around female health or gynecological health people, really those events. And we're excited to bring them back. And yeah, we used to have the town halls. We would invite our community to the office and we would have everyone on Instagram could just like show up at our office, check out the machines, have dinner with us, meet the team. And, my gosh, we're excited to bring these back.

Speaker1: Yeah, that's so cool. I kind of feel like your Instagram story like that you have posted today. It reminds me of what you're saying about when you go into the office and have those conversations around women's health on your sorry today. For anyone listening, it is a question around what is your weirdest period symptoms. I think it was. And everyone's able to write back and share their things. And then day has further gone on and given a scientific explanation of why it is that you feel that way or what that symptom specifically is. And I just thought that was so clever. And I was like reading through being like, yep, yep, yep. Interesting, interesting. I have had that

Speaker3: Both going to have a big mystery.

Speaker1: Yeah. It's definitely one of my favorite Instagram accounts, especially in terms of the design, in terms of the content, the language. It's also great.

Speaker3: Thank you. That's very kind of you. We work hard.

Speaker1: I'm sure you do. I'm very sure you do. I was reading your Year in Reflection article about what went good and what didn't go so good for twenty twenty. And I'd love to talk through your thoughts on working with agencies and what you've learnt through that process.

Speaker3: Yeah, so I was really excited to work with agencies because I watched Mad Men and I had these expectations around how they were going to give all of this revolutionary advice and be really actively involved in the evolution of the brand and was quite quickly disappointed. So at the beginning of starting think about these brand, we actually tried working with six different branding agencies and we had an onboarding for each one, just started the whole process again from scratch, and we ended up having really mediocre results, which led me to believe that you can't outsource the really hard soul searching work that is required if you are to build a genuinely differentiated, thought provoking brand. So it was quite a controversial decision at the time because of the increased complexity that it would invite. But we decided to bring all of our brand building in-house. We hired an amazing illustrator and graphic designer from New York and started working together on the brand identity. And she was happy with the level of attention to detail that we had to every single element of the packaging, every color that was part of our team had to have a meeting that was associated with something that had to do with the company. So we weren't just going to choose random colors because they looked pretty together. So we have the central brand thesis that we developed. The Scientist Meets the Dreamer, where the kind of aims to summarize what we're trying to do with the brand

Speaker1: That's so cool on the money side of things, does it work out to be better than hiring

Speaker3: Yourself to be very much cheaper? And I don't know why people don't talk about that, because, like, the main reason why people hire agencies is because we say, oh, but I can't afford to have a team in health. Well, guess what? An agency will tell you. Oh, you know, we love your brand. We really want to work with you. It's so interesting. It's just another bottled water and we'll give you a great rate and it's going to be, say, eighty eighty thousand pounds, which is a lot. That's like two people's salaries. Yeah. For three to six months worth of work. And then there's going to be all of these hidden fees that will pop up in all of these new reasons for why you should pay more. So it's very expensive to work with an agency and the people that they hire. Then to be really junior, you rarely work with someone very senior. And even if you do work with someone very senior, he or she will not be the founder of the brand. Going to be an employee of your company. They're never going to be. Emotionally invested in what you're building is you are so unless you totally dislike creativity and have absolutely no interest in design, then you definitely don't work with an agency.

Speaker1: It's a really great insight and it's something that I've often thought about before. You know, in the past, having worked with people who there is a disconnect, there's a disconnect when you're working with a team who aren't fully invested in your business and it can feel that you're pushed to the back of the line or whatever. It is very interesting. I'm sure there's also obviously amazing scenarios where people work with people and they click and all that kind of thing. But yeah, super interesting insight. When you think about your journey so far and looking back over the few years in what you've managed to create and bring to the world, what do you think is your superpower?

Speaker3: Well, this is pretty much a very cliche to say, but I think resilience and courage, just like never backing down when faced with the challenge, because so much of what we've had to do over the past four years just seemed impossible when we started thinking about it, you know, setting our own production and not only having our own production, but also having a medical device standards and then getting it certified by, you know, international bodies like the FDA or the European Medicines Agency without having anyone on our team that has ever done that before or building machines, that code tampons, which are hyper absorbent with our cannabinoid formulation without that immediately permeating inside the temple. Again, that seems impossible. And we didn't have anyone on the team who had done it before building the brand that we did in-house, again, without having experience when we hired our graphic designer and she didn't have experience in building brands. She was she's an artist. She's a creative person, but she's not a brand strategist. So that was, again, another thing that we have to completely figure out from scratch. And I think the only reason why we did it is because we've always hired people who are really resilient within the company and who don't back down when faced with a massive mountain to climb.

Speaker1: And how did you find Erin, by the way, on Instagram? I love that good old Instagram.

Speaker3: We send her the message saying we love your aesthetic. Do you think you could help us work on a brand? She said yes. What is this about? And I was on a flight to New York, I think, three days after.

Speaker1: Oh, my gosh. Cool. And the rest is history. I love that. What advice do you have for women who have a big idea and want to start their own business?

Speaker3: I guess the one thing that's really important is make sure that you are so obsessed with your idea that you would gladly wake up at 4:00 a.m. after only two hours. Forty five minutes, a really poor quality sleep in order to go and do the really hard work of materializing your idea. So don't start a business or don't start building a product unless you're like a hundred percent convinced that it has to exist in the world, because I think it's rare for people to be able to bring ideas into fruition unless they have this almost like delusional amount of belief in their product and their business.

Speaker1: Yes, that is so true. That's what's going to drive you forward in the tough times. And when everything feels really, really bad and you're like, why am I doing this?

Speaker3: Yeah. And when I see entrepreneurs that are unhappy or that want to get out there, usually people that thought, OK, well, this could be a profitable business or I could flip it in five years. This will be interesting to try. They're not people who are just almost crazily obsessed with their business,

Speaker1: The visionary, you know, OK, we are up to the six quick questions part of the episode. Question number one is what's your why?

Speaker3: Two things. So the first thing is that I want to create a world where every woman can have complete understanding and complete control over hormonal, menstrual, vaginal health on the stick. And why is that? I want to create this beautiful culture where everyone can show up as their effortless self to work every day. And when I think about the kind of culture that I want to build day, there's like one vision that I have. And it's in 40 years when our employees have had their own children and their own children have grown up. I want justice to be such a relevant company that our current theme's children will still want to work at.

Speaker1: Wow, I love that. That's so special. What a great vision. Question number two is what do you think's been the number one marketing moment that's made your business pop?

Speaker3: Number one, I think it's misleading when people say, oh, it was like this one thing, it's a collection of many different things. We have this thing in Bulgaria. Look comes to those who are prepared. So sometimes people obsess over like the one perfect strategy or like the one perfect marketing moment. But in fact, it's a collection of like many small moments of working really hard and doing the right thing. The payoff?

Speaker1: Yeah, absolutely. Question number three is where do you hang out to get smarter? What books are you reading? What do you listen to? Are there any newsletters you subscribe to that are amazing for entrepreneurs?

Speaker3: I wish I could say subscribe to newsletters, but apart from just like my PubMed notifications on PCOS and the intricacies of our microbiome, etc., I don't read any other newsletters. I do read books all the time, but they're not business books. I like to just read biographies or documentary style books that show like human stories and how people overcome challenges or how they develop emotionally as human beings. And I also get a lot in terms of getting smarter. I get a load from coaching and I get a lot from therapy. So I do coaching twice a month and I do therapy twice a week. And that really helps me become smarter in the way that I manage my time, in the way that I manage myself, in the way that I manage my emotions.

Speaker1: That's so interesting. When you say through a coach, how did you find a coach and how did you know what to identify as like what you would be coached in?

Speaker3: So there's a great service that's available right now. It's called More Happy. That's Happy. Spoke with an eye. And it's a really affordable workplace coaching that you can take on various different topics that matter to you. So whether it's family relationships, professional coaching, and they have a number of different cultures that you can choose from and you can try different coaches until you find one that works for you. So I really recommend that it's also very affordable. It's within the budgets of small businesses, medium businesses, so more happy, very much recommend to anyone that's interested in coaching.

Speaker1: Cool. I'm going to check that out and I will link it in the show notes for anyone else who wants to check that out. Question number four is how do you win the day? And that's around your A.M. and PM rituals that keep you feeling happy and motivated and successful and productive.

Speaker3: I love that. So I only recently started having morning and evening rituals because especially 20-20 was the year in which I just woke up, worked and then went to sleep, and then we'll did it again. But I've been speaking to my therapist about the importance of morning and evening rituals, and I started implementing these in the morning. When I wake up, the first thing I do is I'm still I have my alarm and then I want to spend a few more minutes in bed to wake up. So I turn on a podcast. Recently, I've been really obsessed with this American Life, which has these beautiful stories about just like various people in various difficulties. And there's one that they they think two weeks ago, which was on topic of delight, which had stories from different people in America that were seeking delight in different ways. So I listened to that for about twenty minutes. And then I when I feel a little bit more awake, I started reading the book that I'm currently reading. So right now I'm reading Barack Obama's autobiography and I'm also reading a book by Eric from which I'm reading in Bulgarian. So I'm not sure what the exact name in English is, but I think it translates to the art of loving. And then after that I do twenty minutes of Duolingo, the language turning up. So I do German and French because I don't have anyone to speak German and French. And I'm worried that I'm losing the language and then ashamed to say I do about an hour, forty five minutes of email and then in the evening when I'm in Bulgaria, I have my trainer that comes in in real life. When I'm in the UK, we zoom and I do the combination between classes and yoga. And usually I watch a funny show, which is a habit that I formed recently because when I was growing up we didn't have a TV. And then later on I was always working so hard they didn't have time to watch some of the same Sex in the City or the Office, Modern Family. All of these shows friends I've never seen friends.

Speaker1: So oh my gosh.

Speaker3: Watching these shows,

Speaker1: What are you watching at the moment

Speaker3: Now? I'm watching the office. The US office. I'm on season one called. That's so funny.

Speaker1: It's so funny.

Speaker3: So much sense. Now, why for so long I've heard so many people talk about the hundred under-represent.

Speaker1: I only watch Modern Family recently and I feel like it change. Well, it's so funny, brings me so much joy,

Speaker3: So close,

Speaker1: Yes, very wholesome. Question number five is if you only had a thousand dollars left in your business bank account, where would you spend it? And that's kind of to highlight what your key resources would be to double your money or make more money from what you have.

Speaker3: If we only had one thousand, probably spend it on a farewell dinner with the team this stage, they can not support it. So we just want. So I would probably spend it on just like a private chef, lots of delicious cocktails, beautiful dinner with the theme where we all say thank you and see you soon. Lovely.

Speaker1: And question number six is how do you deal with failure?

Speaker3: I wish I could say feel better with failure. So something that I'm trying to do now that my therapist told me about, because I have a really negative inner voice in the way that I speak to myself, I would never speak to anyone else in a million years. So suddenly that my therapist recommended is when I go into like an internal self bashing role, like you're such a failure. You didn't do this, you didn't do that. You can go to your entire to do list. You didn't spend enough time with this person or that person. You didn't make your family feel loved. Like I very easily overwhelm myself with this feeling of I'm such a massive failure. So I try and analyze the way that I speak to myself and see whether I would speak like this to a person who wasn't me. And that helps me put things into perspective.

Speaker1: Wow. I love that. That's a great insight. Thank you so much for sharing that. Wow. Oh, my goodness, I've loved this chat and loved learning about day and how it got started and I'm just in awe of what you're doing. So thank you so much for being on the show today and talking with me.

Speaker3: Thank you for sharing the spotlight and caring about female health and wanting to learn more. And I'm really glad that we get to connect with your audience as well. Me too.



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