Natural Light on Eunique Deeann
CREATIVE ENTREPRENEUR: EUNIQUE DEEANN
READING TIME: 5MIN
I met Eunique Deeann about 3 years ago while I was managing FERN, a Boutique in Leucadia, CA. True story, she walked in and all I could see was another brown girl like me! (not many in town) So I got quickly curious about her and why she was around. She told me about this platform she was building to inspire people to get outdoors and travel more: Stranded on Land. Cut to today, for me Eunique has been an incredible human to have as a friend, boss, partner, example, collaborator, and beyond. She is the epitome of living life with your full heart, and is a great role model when it comes to being conscious, ethical, and true. Her passion for creativity itself is contagious, and I am humbled by all the wisdom she shares with us in this interview.
Who are you? How did you get to where you are today?
I’ve been on a journey like everyone to figure out what my path and purpose in life is. I’m discovering this path through honing in on my creativity. I’ve always been a hustler and someone who puts my all into any project I’m working on , but it’s been the last 3 years since I started my first passion project that I really started uncovering my roots. Stranded on Land has been so much a part of me that I thought for so long I could not see my life without it. It was the first place that felt like home and supported every avenue of my creative curiosity. By committing to diving fully into a vision, knowing that it was completely different from anything I had ever done before was scary, but over the years has given me confidence, security and the ability to not only define, but create myself and a space for others to do the same.
By sticking to and committing to this path, I’ve found confidence to pursue my creativity. By pursuing my creativity, I’ve discovered my purpose - empower and inspire others to do the same. I’m mulling over some new ideas and another project, this one a bit more intimate, a bit more personal, and a bit more vulnerable. But I think that through the creation of Stranded and the course of events that have evolved each day, I’ve gained the foundation to really pursue my life’s purpose, and unveiled, why I’m here. And this, is truly such a beautiful thing.
Tell us more about Stranded on Land and your new venture.
I’ve been curating a digital platform for exploring to create + inspire for over 5 years now. Over the years this has evolved, transformed and shaped. People have come and gone but those who align, have always remained. My good friend, Gabby has been one of the biggest supporters and has really helped shape the evolution of this, and ultimately of me. The roots of it all is to explore to create, tell stories that inspire. We’re reshaping the platform so that it continues to grow and stays in lines with the integrity of why it was created. And to me, that’s the most beautiful thing about creating your own brand, is that when you discover that it’s shifting too far in a direction that’s misaligned you can say, Hey, wait a minute, what are we doing? Why are we doing it? What and why are we here, in this world?
I’ve recently began my embarkment on a new, solo journey. What I feel is my life’s mission, my life’s work and my ultimate purpose for being here, in this lifetime and aligned with the experiences I’ve previously held. I’m still nutting out the nitty-gritty of this all, but I’ve never felt more confident, in myself, or my place in this world. And this is largely due to the progression that Stranded on Land has provided.
When and how did you decide to become an entrepreneur?
I think it’s always been a part of me. I got to a sticking point not feeling supported or empowered to grow into the places that I wanted to and felt most connected with in my career. I was pigeonholed due to being good at something I no longer wanted to do. I’m great at logistics, amazing at the details. And people, I get them which has always given me a leg up in sales + marketing. But, these have always been things that have not made me feel complete. Something has always been missing.
A friend gave me a push + offering me a temporary job as a design project manager while his full time gal was off on maternity leave. It was here that I REALLY discovered that I was “creative.” People wanted to hear what I had to say, I learned I could create really beautiful things. It was the first time I had really worked with and lead a team. This was the first place I had ever really felt empowered and supported to grow and align with my purpose. When my contract ended a couple months later, I left this job and set out on a solo road trip and started really unveiling what I wanted and didn’t want to experience in this life.
The logistics of daily living has pulled me into working for someone else from time to time to pay the bills, but the difference between the previous and now is that I have a true growth path and unlike before, it’s on my terms which continually provide opportunities I never imagined before.
What’s the thing you dislike most about being an entrepreneur?
The love hate is in the growing pains.
What’s your favorite thing about being an entrepreneur?
I get to call my own shots. Make the rules, break the rules and live life exactly how I want to. In a timeline that aligns with my soul, my purpose, my passion and my deepest truths. Sometimes that means molding and folding to the income. Finding patience in the process and timing of others. But that submission has helped me prioritize what is actually important verses what someone else has deemed important for me.
I think that the thought of changing the world is sometimes viewed as needing to be massive. It can be overwhelming and defeating. To me, change is in the small efforts that accumulate.
What has been your most challenging moment in business?
The biggest challenges lie in the limitations that align with finances. Outside of that, it’s been finding people who align with the vision then letting go and trusting their ability to bring things to life through their eyes while still holding the truth of the roots of what the vision is really all about.
What has been your most rewarding moment in business?
The first was connecting with a handful of people who just got all the things I had in my head. And the things they didn’t get - they’ve had patience to wait to see what they would become. It’s been such a confidence booster and confirmation that there’s something to the ideas. It’s on the roughest of days that the tiniest of reminders from a handful of key people put me back on track and keep me going. It’s humbling and I can’t even tell you how grateful I am for this.
How and Why are you changing the world?
I think that the thought of changing the world is sometimes viewed as needing to be massive. It can be overwhelming and defeating. To me, change is in the small efforts that accumulate. I do little things everyday - a lot of them maybe unseen.
My effort lies in being consistent and staying true to my own integrity. Being an honest and kind human. Giving as much as I can. Sometimes that giving looks like actual assets, but often it’s just a little bit of my time. Maybe it’s offering advice, or showing someone how to do something they’re curious to learn or even just listening.
9 out of 10 times, I’ll stop to listen to anyone who takes the time to ask me to. I don’t see my time as any more valuable than anyone else’s. I think it’s in these moments that real change happens. For me and for the other people involved. Listening, sharing, being present - these are all so undervalued. These are all things that can really transform another person in ways bigger than we might think.
Favorite Business Tools
My iPhone - it literally does everything i need on the go. If i could only have one “tool” it would be this.
Secondarily - my notepad/journal. I’m a pen to paper kind of gal and nothing replaces writing out the things that fill my brain the old fashion way.
Favorite Creative Tools
VSCO - for quick and seamless phone photo edits.
Canva - for lazy creative creation from flyers to newsletter or social media banners.
Breathe App- for my meditation/mellow out + reset.
You Tube - for information, education or inspiration.
What are the 3 things you wish you knew before starting your own business?
The REAL importance of having a community and how much this can affect the speed of growth for you.
How much money I should have saved before taking the leap so that the growing pains would have been a little less painful.
How strong I really am. I haven’t really understood this until more recently and still question it often. But looking back I can see how much I’ve accomplished.
Where do you normally seek inspiration?
In nature and solitude. In observing others. And behind the wheel. I like to get outside by myself or take a long drive or road trip in Jeep Zeus to clear my head and realign.
Is there a person, book, movie, album, or art piece that has influenced your life and work significantly? Who, what, and how?
There are many. My friend Jourdan Binder really inspired and empowered me to follow my creativity by giving me a job that I was certainly not qualified for. Kevin Coster, my creative director that would take 20 minutes out of his day, any day of the week, no matter how busy he was to answer any question, teach any lesson or look over anything someone put together with an open and objective eye while taking the time to consider why and how it was created and then giving feedback to put you on a path to be better.
My best friend Allison for always championing for me from day one, for pushing me when I lose faith and holding space when I need to let all the fears or insecurities out.
My gal, Gabby for empowering me to lead. For following along with all of my crazy ideas, pushing me when I need it and leading me by setting an example of following her heart, putting health and happiness first and fearlessly fighting for the things she believes in.
Becky Mendoza for just being not only an exceptional example of how to be fearless, get shit done and be a boss female. But for also always making time for any and everyone who asks for advice and supporting even the smallest of ideas that anyone might have.
My crew from Perrier for giving me the first real job that pushed me to get out of my comfort zone, challenged me to think bigger and rewarded me for doing it. I still hold close relationships with my clients and managers from here and they’re often people I circle back to when I need another perspective from a business sense.
My dad. For being the best example of a man, a leader, a teacher, a student and someone leading life with love.
My community here in Encinitas. My friend’s group that’s all too close some times, but who has been beyond supportive, pushy, loyal and the best foundation and cheerleaders anyone could ever have asked for. I’ve developed the best friends who feel like family, and family who exceeds the expectations of what it could ever be here.
My best friends from childhood and my early twenties who have always allowed me the space to grow and when I get too far off one end or the other, reel me back in and remind me how great I really am and that my mistakes are some of the most beautiful parts of me.
So many others.
E2 by Pam Grout is one of many books that has had a game changing effect for me. The power of thought and shifting what you’ve been engrained to believe as truth is single handedly been the most significant step in me following through with the pursuit of building my own business.
What are your thoughts about the current social media landscape in relation to small businesses?
I use it often. I’m learning my boundaries with it and have always been committed to keeping it organic, authentic and not being steered by trends or the false sense of values in likes or number of followers. It’s simply a resource that I dive into when I need it and disconnect from when I need a break.
Who is another conscious entrepreneur we should know about?
Becky Mendoza and Changing Tides Foundation. She’s just hands down all sorts of amazing and the things she strives to accomplish with this NPO are changing the world she’s able to impact every single day.