Meet Tyler Lee
By Britny Montano | Temecula, CA
This month we are #CatalyzingCourage over mental health. As an emotionally charged topic for our monthly Cup Of Courage event, one of our guest speakers, Tyler Lee, made it a little sweeter with fresh donuts and ice cream from her new shop Do Good Donuts & Treats.
A little bit about our Courageous Chica
Growing up in the agriculturally heavy area of Central California, Tyler's love for baking started at the young age of seven - #thanksgrandma! She moved to Long Beach, CA for college and found herself working in a local bakery. For Tyler, this wasn't only a job she found within her passion of baking, but a local family that not only invested into its community, but the community invested in the shop as well. After some learning, finding her husband, and adulting from having a baby girl, Tyler made a commitment to follow her own dream of being a small business owner. She set out to create a space where she could build connections, community, and happy, sprinkle filled smiles along the way.
Despite all of her new success with Do Good Donuts & Treats, anxiety and panic attacks continue to be obstacles Tyler battles with. She opened up about the struggle of facing these two monsters throughout her whole life. Tyler spoke about her own surprise - years prior - when she found herself working in mental health services for several years with people who had eating disorders. From her years of working with these patients, Tyler realized our food choices affect our wholes lives, and she wanted to create an outlet bringing people together in a positive way. Even though Tyler had this amazing goal with a heart full of sugar, she found herself, once again, getting in her own head.
Wait, successful people have anxiety and panic attacks too?
Absolutely. With a new business and new family underway, Tyler had an honest conversation with herself about recognizing when her anxiety was detracting from her forward progress. She compared the downward spiral to buying a ticket to the circus - the circus in this scenario being a dark mental state. If you're in line for the circus, and you purchase a ticket, there is no going back. You are fully committed to entering. To avoid the chaos and scariness of that mental space, Tyler practices getting out of line before entering the striped tent she doesn't want to be in. If a time comes when Tyler recognizes she's in line and still buys a ticket, she now sets the parameters of how long she'll be in the circus, and what she will allow herself to see. Of course this takes some time to gain control over. She admits to no mastery, but she now knows when to recognize when she's standing in line and can often choose how it will play out.
"...you are not alone. Someone else is feeling this too." - Tyler Lee
This is where she couldn't emphasize enough how important it is to ask for help. Maybe you don't need professional help per say, but maybe open up to someone close to you. Realize that whatever mental battles you may be experiencing, "you are not alone. Someone else is feeling this too." Dig for that piece of courage to not only be honest with a friend or partner about what's happening behind closed doors, but, more importantly, yourself. When Tyler was being honest with herself she realized we "sometimes have thoughts that aren't true. You have to trust your intuition. Honor it. [We] just have to be more courageous and reach out for help and take the next step." Even though your path to getting things under control might be in an infant state, it is in the right direction to living the life you want to live.
A major business/life lesson Tyler learned: you're not going to please everyone. Part of the anxiety Tyler felt when starting up her business revolved around the unattainable expectations she put on herself. It wasn't until she asked herself, "Who are you trying to impress?" then honestly answering it, "oh, it's me," that she was able to relieve some of the pressure Tyler created for herself. This is still something she continues to work on.
It's "really important to not only like who and where you work with, but living positively overall." - Tyler Lee
Paying it forward from her previous work at the bakery, Tyler knows she has the power to cultivate positiveity in her employee's lives. It's "really important to not only like who and where you work with, but living positively overall." She wants not only her guests, but colleagues to feel welcome in the shop. Tyler knows there is always more work and evolving to be done, but at least it can be tackled with people who share the same positive vision. The shop can feel this happening when "a dad and his daughter come in for donuts before school. It's the best," she shared with us with a smile from ear to ear. After meeting some of her staff, it's evident Tyler's positive outlook on her shop is reflected through the ladies' smiling faces.
What Tyler wants us to know
Mental health is a lifelong journey. Tyler spoke about realizing her mental health/self care needs looked drastically different in her 20's, now in her 30's and will continue to be different going through her 40's and 50's. Practice listening to your gut. Practice giving yourself the evolving care, time, and attention you need.
As a female entrepreneur she spoke about now feeling like a special time where women are lifting up other women. She thinks, "a lot of good has come out of the negative that's happening," and it's showing in the way women are fueling each other positively. Yasss ladies, keep it up!
Lessons for her baby girl
"It's not about how much you fall down, it's about how much you get up and what causes you to get up. Really channeling that. Find out what that push is for you. Is it someone in your life who's really encouraging? Is it you wanting to prove everyone wrong? Is it for yourself? All of the above?...We're all going to fall down, but hopefully we get back up. Sometimes it takes a long time, sometimes it's immediate, but that's truly what I want to model for her." - Tyler Lee
Q: What's been the most rewarding thing since opening your business?
A: [Long pause]. "A lot of things. The day we opened - it was a year in the making - I went to open the front door and there was a line down the block. I almost couldn't open the door because I was getting choked up. I was scared and excited. That was a really special moment, and it was the first thing we did."
If you are in the Long Beach, CA area definitely stop by Do Good Donuts & Treats to try some yummy ice cream and donuts, or follow Tyler's success on IG @dogooddonutsandtreats, Twitter @dogooddonutslb, or FB @DoGoodDonutsandTreats. She would love to hear from you if you're interested in starting your own business. Thank you Tyler for sharing your heart, Sunday Scaries, and passion with us!
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