‘On the Couch’ with Lively Livings FounderLively Living’s founder Julie has spent the past seven years channeling her seemingly boundless passion and energy into building Lively Living into Australia’s number one distributor of ultrasonic aroma diffusers, sleep aids and accompanying organic essential oils and blends.
With Julie’s innovative mindset and strong work ethic paving the way for Lively Living’s exciting growth, we wondered exactly how many hours are in this entrepreneurial dynamo’s day! We recently managed to steal Julie away from her busy schedule for a chat on the cyber couch to ask a few personal questions to get a better understanding not just of how Julie works … but how she rests and plays.
Julie, you’ve built Lively Living from the ground up, which takes quite a multi-faceted skillset. But what exactly is your background? What did you do prior to Lively Living?
I worked many 'jobs', though I actually had a long and successful career working in party plan! It all started when I got retrenched from my job a week before Xmas. As a mother with a young child – my son was three years old at the time – I knew I needed something that would offer flexible hours, and the chance to be my own boss.
The company I consulted for specialised in women’s fashion and had a fabulous line. It turned out I didn’t just love working party plan … I was really good at it too! It wasn’t long until I was doing around ten parties per week.
I quickly worked my way to a Area Manager role supporting a large and successful team to achieve their own goals and aspirations. On the back of my track record of sales success , customer service and leadership, I was then elevated to national role, overseeing teams all over Australia, all whilst working from home, being my own boss and working hours around raising my son.
I’ve always had a ‘big picture’ approach to whatever I take on, and a love for sharing amazing products with people but most of all this ties in with my love for connecting with people. My years in party plan empowered me with skills that have been very transferrable to Lively Living.
What’s the most rewarding thing about Lively Living?
I’m passionate about sharing fabulous products, and there’s nothing more rewarding than receiving feedback from customers and stockists about how much they love Lively Living’s range.
It’s very gratifying to know that so many small and larger businesses who have connected with our brand are really doing well, and that they’re dedicated to our products and 'sharing the win'. I get the opportunity to physically connect with a lot of my stockists at trade events and exhibitions, and it’s always such a pleasure to meet in person and receive their feedback firsthand.
Receiving positive messages from Lively Living’s customers is also extremely rewarding. From the mum’s who’ve tried everything to get their babies to settle before trying our Aroma-Snooze, to the long term users of our essential oil range, to the low-tox living enthusiasts who’ve recently discovered the versatility of our large range of Aromatherapy products.
Even the busiest of people need time out for themselves. What do you like to do in your spare time?
I spend so many hours on my business, it’s important not to forget to take time out. This might sound a little strange, but one of my favourite ways to relax is to engage in social media. I really enjoy just chilling out on the couch at the end of the day and posting new content to Lively Living’s Instagram account - you’ll find us @livelylivingaustralia - and responding to messages. It gives me the opportunity to tap into my creative side, as well as being engaged and productive.
Other ways I find to relax and take time out for myself include spending time at the beach, participating in a class of hot yoga, reading a good book, or heading to my favourite café for a good coffee.
But my ultimate ‘me time’ indulgence – and this just reinforces how busy my life can sometimes be – is catching a flight. It’s not for the refreshments, and sometimes it’s not even about the destination. For me catching a plane means I can indulge in one of my favourite pastimes: watching movies! I love nothing more than plugging in to the inflight entertainment system and catching up on all the latest releases that I haven’t had time to see at home. Never underestimate the luxury of uninterrupted back-to-back movies – my idea of bliss!
Speaking of flights. Where is your favourite holiday destination?
That’s an easy one: It’s Bali! I’ve been travelling to Bali since I was a young adult and, over the years, its come to represent different things to me and mark different transitions on my life journey.
For example, when I was younger, I loved the Kuta strip – the partying, the beaches, the shopping, markets, water sports, bungee jumping, motorbikes – I hold dear so many amazing memories of fast-paced, fun-filled holidays.
These days, you’ll find me in Ubud – the tranquil uplands of Bali – enjoying a much more relaxed pace. I try to carve out ‘me time’ at least once a year to escape to Ubud and recharge my mind, body, and soul at Ubud Sari, a health retreat that celebrates a holistic approach to health and wellbeing through tailored detox and cleansing programs.
While I spend considerable time in China for business purposes, and have visited many other exciting parts of the world, I always enjoy returning to Bali. The added bonus is Bali is only a short plane flight from Australia … but still long enough to fit in a couple of movies!
Thanks so much for your time, Julie. It’s always interesting to learn more about the ‘face behind the brand’!