Leaving college and my home comforts to study business at University was never going to be easy. I had always found it difficult to meet new people, it didn’t come naturally to me, and made me feel awkward and out of place. I had suffered with undiagnosed social anxiety for most of my teenage years, however this was something I wanted to overcome. A few months before setting off, I had some hypnotherapy sessions to help calm my nerves.

Like most 19-year-olds, September came and I was filled with excitement and nerves, this would be my first time living alone and it was daunting prospect. During my first few months I tried really hard to overcome my anxiety by mixing with others, and trying new things, but this was short lived, my anxiety had got the better of me, and in December I called my parents to let them know I couldn’t cope anymore and wanted to come home.

Once back home, and taking sometime out to reflect, I decided I still wanted to move on with my life and find a job. I visited my doctor, and began medication to help with my anxiety. I began to apply for jobs locally, and within a few weeks I had been invited to an interview, I was so nervous, I felt that this was my chance to move on with my life, a few days before my interview, Lock Down was announced due to Covid, and the interview was cancelled. This was so disappointing, but I didn’t give up, and continued to apply for jobs. This became more and more disheartening, at this point many skilled people had begun to lose their jobs. I realised that this would make things harder, I was competing with others, who clearly had much more experience than me. I soon came to realise that the current situation would make it almost impossible for me to find work for the foreseeable future.

So, I decided with the little money that I had left, approximately £300, that I would start my own business. My parents also wanted to help me out, and agreed to match my savings, to help me set myself up. I had planned to study Business at University, so I paired this up with my interest in the environment and chose to open a plastic free and eco-friendly online store. This has been a sharp learning curve for me, in a matter of a few months, I threw myself into learning about; ecommerce, sourcing suppliers, adding products, writing content and building a website. With my parents support we came up with http://www.zerozen.co.uk

Zero Zen is huge about green, eco-friendly natural products, & how using them in our day to day lives can help out our environment. We hope to create loyal customers who are looking for organic items, natural gifts, household products and skincare, all of which are plastic free.

Having anxiety can make life a bit more difficult, but it shouldn’t stop you succeeding in your dreams. Please remember it is ok not to be ok, talking to others about the way you are feeling helps, you are not alone.


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