The goal of Hardly Hustle is to provide inspiration, drive and motivation in a 10 minute read or less. What you see is what you get. This is hot off the press without an editing team. Buffy Andrews is up.
Who are you and what do you do?
My name is Buffy Andrews, and I am your resident "wellness buff." I came by it honestly through the desperate desire to see people live well and feel whole. I started my career as a mental health therapist doing intensive in home services, and recognized that I was burning out and the people I was serving just needed more simplified tools to actually feel better. That is when I decided to start out on my own and build my own wellness center. Through furthering my education to become trauma trained, skilled in working with couples, and alternative medicine choices for individuals, as well as functional mental health I have created a practice that truly seeks to integrate mind/body/spirit in healing. I own the Made Well Center for Wholeness in which we have 10 practitioners serving clients in a variety of ways. We have mental health counselors, gut health practitioners, and health coaches all who seek to help our clients truly heal in root cause ways. It has taken me 5 years to build to the place we are at now, serving hundreds of clients every month. Through serving the clients I've served over the years, this has led me to also just want to dive deeper into understanding neuroinflammation and healing mental health struggles from a functional perspective. This is why I integrate lab work, and natural health remedies into serving my clients as well. From here I seek to continue serving clients and helping them heal at a root cause level, and hopefully gaining more traction with public speaking to educate individuals about the need to natural and lifestyle medicine choices that couple with psychotherapy in order to truly heal.
What did it take/how did you get started?
I saw the need when working in Intensive in home services to educate people about public health issues, as well as show them practical and tangible things they can do in order to feel better in the mental health sphere. I recognized the medicalization of mental health was a big issue, and was causing individuals to stay sick. This spurred a desire in me to really help people heal sustainably which led to me starting my own practice. This way I didn't have to hide behind the red tape, and could actually integrate my own unique therapeutic style into the mix and see people's lives change for the better. Five years in, and we are seeing even more individuals come to understand mind/body/spirit integration and how to heal from functional perspectives.
What does the future look like for you and your business?
I am actually currently in a training to become a "Functional Mental Health Practitioner." This means I will be able to run labs on individuals to test for neuroinflammation and actually be able to make recommendations for vitamins/supplements, and lifestyle modifications based on lab work in order to reduce neuroinflammation and actually treat mental health disorders from a functional perspective. My goal with my business is to help people see that they are more than their diagnosis, and that healing is always possible. Hopefully we will begin to see even more of our clients starting to seek the help our our health coaches in the future, as well as checking things like their gut or blood work in order to see what physical things can be done to treat their mental illness. We are always seeking to grow, and hopefully bring on even more practitioners to serve more individuals in our community. I am also hoping to be able to speak more at events/conferences etc in order to really educate the public about new ways to think about mental health and hopefully instill a little bit more hope than the world lets on.
What drives / motivates you on a daily basis?
The desire for people to know TRUTH about what they are dealing with. I am motivated to see people change, and to have them see that they can change. We are not just born with sickness, but can actually make change happen in and around us.
What advice would you give someone interested in doing what you do?
I would encourage people to continue to pursue your passions. Remember that everything is a process, and it's okay if it all takes a little longer than expected. But never waiver in the truth of what you're trying to pursue, and don't sell out for money.
What has been the hardest part of your business journey?
The hardest part was probably having to navigate all the red tape of getting on insurance panels, and making sure that legally I had everything lined up how I needed to. Beyond that, it was simply a matter of finding referral sources and building up a team of people who were skilled at what they do, and knew how to navigate the ups and downs of the mental health field.
How have you managed burnout thus far?
I protect my time with really solid boundaries. I try to make sure that my 40hr work week is just that - 40 hrs. Not 40 hrs of seeing clients, and then still needing to do 10 hours of notes and paperwork, and then 5 hours of administration work. I block my time on my calendar so that all the work that needs to be done is accounted for. It's all work, and all needs to be taken care of, so I block my schedule accordingly. I also utilized my calendar to proactively block time for vacations, exercise, and meetings so that I am honoring my body and my mind with my time. I value gardening, and anything outside. So walks are huge for me, along with getting my hands dirty in the garden every now and again so that I can see tangible results of the things I am doing.
What are a few resources that you'd recommend?
I love the Dhru Puroit Podcast, he interviews all sorts of functional medicine practitioners and it's very insightful. I believe every therapist ever should read "The Body Keeps the Score" by Bessel Van Der Kolk - it will rock your view of trauma and the mental health system at large. And as always I recommend the Made Well Center for Wholeness (www.madewellcenter.org) for anyone seeking health coaching needs, mental health counseling, or potentially joining in on yearly retreats, etc. And for anyone in North Carolina struggling to afford mental health and wellness services, they should apply for scholarship at www.thiswholelife.org through This Whole Life Foundation.
List the founders
How many hours a week do you work on this hustle?
# of Employees?
1 part time employee, 1 full time employee, and eight 1099 independent contractors
When did you start?
How much did it cost to launch?
What were your funding methods and ballpark amount raised?
I actually hosted a live music concert and encouraged people to donate through that.
What's the #1 thing you need right now?
I need to hire people who are skilled at what they do, as well as raise money for saving to purchase a building for business to be out of one day.
@themadewellcenter @buffy_andrews https://www.linkedin.com/in/wellnessbuff/