Melissa Palmer and Jenna kick off with her family’s remarkable relationship with the ocean, how it healed her great grandmother and inspired her mother to found OSEA as one of the pioneering natural skincare lines dedicated to using ingredients that are healthy for us and healthy for the planet.
With the seeds of OSEA being planted in the Palmer family 28 years ago, we discuss how they nurture their family working relationship and the importance of staying true to your vision, trusting it that it will guide you in the right direction, and learning to identify what is worth waiting for.
We also chat about how Melissa makes personal growth a habit by creating self-care checklists that she updates with new practices, finding flow through movement, and looking at nature as a teacher.
Highlights from the Transcript
- On true connection: “We may be ‘hyperconnected’ today but if I see what’s happening with my friend on Instagram and I haven’t spoken to her in months that’s a faux connection. We’re missing true connection. My friends and I love living together because it is so connective. We connect about the minutiae of life every day.”
- On leading with intuition: “You have to wait for people to catch up. I’ve watched that manifest bit by bit with everything my mom has said about beauty, wellness, and even our specific products, like our Ocean Cleansing Mud. I recently told her that we have to do market testing to see what people want. She illuminated that by saying, if she had done market testing on that product people would have complained that it was really tingly on their skin. Now, that’s what people say they love most about the product. I’ve watched her lead with intuition and her commitment to stay true to what she believes intuitively is the right choice regardless of what the space around her says.”
- On learning to pace yourself: “Patience is a constant conversation with my mom and I. I always want to move faster. Where we’ve met in between is picking key portions of the business where we are not going to compromise. Then, we find areas around the product, like marketing, where we can experiment and move faster. Pacing is a constant communication.”
- On being guided: “Over the years, I’ve moved more into my mom’s style of trusting that we are on a path. She has said so many times that OSEA is really taking us on a vision and journey. Part of our power as leaders is to follow and receive it. It sounds really esoteric, and there’s a lot of hard work that makes it happen, but fundamentally, underneath everything we do is this sense of trust that we are on the right path, that we are doing something good and can trust that things will unfold correctly.”
- On learning to trust your journey: “It’s a constant practice in patience, trust, and listening to your intuition. I always take a lot of comfort in reminding myself that life only gives me what I can handle. Looking at the synchronicity of life as it has unfolded, its often been the moments that seemed most challenging that have ultimately paved the way for my greatest success.”
- On making growth a habit: “I am open to everything that is going to help me grow personally. The two ways I actively work towards changing my mindset are: Self-care and finding flow in movement. I’ve created self-care practices to increase my sense of self love and self value; That increased and invigorated sense of self worth has translated so much into what I do professionally. The second is constantly finding a state of flow in my different movement practices. With hula-hooping, for example, if your mind starts to wander, you’re most likely going to drop the hoop. That was my first experience where the mind calms and I was able to tap into that inner life without thinking. I can see the difference in my week when I do or don’t dance. That flow state is really where I am able to evolve and strengthen my mindset because you have to stay so present in the moment. It carries into life and work situations when I really have to think by helping me shift my relationship to what I’m doing and the thoughts around.”
- On changing your self-care routines: “I shift my self-care checklist regularly. I look at each of my self-care tasks as habits to consistently create. I started doing a checklist a couple of years ago. I’m very metrics driven and realized that I wasn’t treating myself to the same level of reporting and metrics personally. I use the app Way of Life. You create a list of the habits you’re working on and whether they are positive or negative. Every night I check in on my list and then get a performance report at the end of the week. I’ve really learned to train myself to be more consistent.”
- On keeping your family working relationship strong: “We got some incredible advice from the founders of Patagonia to get into family business therapy before things got too big. Its been one of the most transformational tools. Its not something that we do constantly but we always know that when there is tension or resentment building we have a place to talk it through and work it out so we can keep that channel with our family really clean and open. Business is important but family always comes first.”
- On being family first: “My mom has always set the precedent of looking at each other as family members first. She always starts with how we are doing, whether we’re working at a good pace and if we are happy. That vision coming from my mom has set the dynamic of our family’s working relationship.”
- On being intentional: “Our mantra is a statement from my mom: ‘You’re either raising consciousness or you’re lowering it.’ It applies to all of our relationships and the experiences we have. Either I’m choosing to raise the consciousness and vibration of an interaction I’m having or if I’m not, I am by de facto lowering it.”
- On being grounded in nature: “My connection to nature is constant. Each day I feel like I have so many responsibilities and the pressure is growing, but the second I am in front of the waves and standing on the shore I get a sense of my place in the world and everything happening. I can’t control the ocean, the earth or the sand. It really helps me feel my place and my connection to everything. Nature has so much to teach us, even just watching and following the currents in the water. One of the practices I am most excited about is looking to nature as a spiritual practice and as a teacher.”