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Interview with Nicole Thelin, Founder of



Interview with Nicole Thelin, Founder of

Nicole Thelin has over 20 years of published writing experience and
her work has been featured in various publications, including USA

She began her prolific writing career at the tender age of 10, when
she began publishing poetry and creative writing in local magazines
and anthologies. Before graduating high school, Nicole began writing
front-page stories for newspapers around the country. Eventually,
she moved into web content writing and learned how to become a
full-circle content creator.

Although her first love was the written word, Nicole also specializes
in web design, chatbot design, video editing, social media marketing,
and other skills necessary to run her online content creation

For nearly 10 years, Nicole’s primary focus has been on helping low
income Americans save money and get free stuff at This information service connects people with
benefits, resources, and assistance programs in their local
communities. As the founder of Low Income Relief, Nicole has
worked tirelessly to make this information more accessible to those
who need it most.

When Nicole isn’t working on her business, she enjoys homeschooling her five children and spending time with her family. She loves traveling, reading Brandon Sanderson novels, and creating unique recipes.

Where did the idea for come from?

Low Income Relief was born out of necessity. My husband was injured during his military training, so he was medically discharged from military service. The transition was really difficult for us and we went through a really difficult time financially. We both had jobs, but we couldn’t afford our own housing so we were staying with friends.

Eventually, we were told we only had two weeks to find our own housing or we would be on the streets. We just couldn’t stay with friends or family any longer. I panicked. I started spending all my spare time at the local library, digging desperately for any help I could find. It was the first time in my life that I encountered phrases like Section 8 housing, low income housing, that sort of thing. And honestly, it changed my life.

Within two weeks, we moved into a beautiful townhouse in a nearby town. Three or four agencies contributed to our move-in costs to help us afford it. Another agency donated furniture; a food bank stocked our shelves with food. With the assistance we received, we were able to get back on our feet and stabilize our family. It was life-changing.

Of course, a lot of our friends and family members were astonished by the
miracle we’d experienced. I gained something of a reputation as a resource guru, so people would call and ask me how to get help with all sorts of different things. A few years later, I realized it would be easier to put all the information I’d found on a website so people wouldn’t have to call me any more. I bought the domain and started writing… and it’s been my full-time job since 2016. You can find great success when you find a need and fill it.

What does your typical day look like and how do you make it productive?

My typical day looks a lot different than it used to. In the early days of Low
Income Relief, I worked 16-18 hour days obsessively. Now that the site is older, I’m able to spend more time away from my desk.

At this point, I usually wake up around 6am, enjoy about an hour of personal
time, and then work for 4-5 hours. I spend most of my time on research and
content creation. After work, I homeschool my kids and enjoy the rest of my day with my family.

I’ve realized that by minimizing the amount of time I work, I actually work more efficiently. I have to prioritize the things that matter most and let everything else go. I’m a big fan of the Pareto principle, which teaches that 80% of your results come from 20% of your efforts. By focusing on the 20% of work that actually makes a difference, I’ve been able to let go of most of the tasks that felt productive but weren’t actually making an impact for my business.

At the end of every day, I make a to-do list for the next day. I only put 4-5 bullet points on that list, so I try to make sure that I pick the tasks that will be the most impactful. That’s how I keep my workday productive.

How do you bring ideas to life?

Chaotically, lol. Honestly, I just start. It’s too easy to get bogged down in the
details and the planning, so when I have a new idea I just act on it right away. It’s usually messy and sloppy at first. I’m a recovering perfectionist, but I’ve learned the hard way that getting something done is better than getting something perfect.

What’s one trend that excites you?

This is a difficult one. I don’t typically follow trends, so I’m not sure how to

What is one habit of yours that makes you more productive as an entrepreneur?

I am always more productive in the morning, so prioritizing my 6am wake up time is critical for me. It allows me to get to my desk and get most of my work done before my children even wake up, which is a huge benefit.
Being able to work from home, on your own schedule, with no oversight is an incredible blessing… but with that blessing comes great responsibility. If I sleep in, I absolutely wreck my day. Every time.

What advice would you give your younger self?

Every skill you learn is precious and every experience you have is
character-building. Nothing is wasted. I spent a lot of time worried about doing things perfectly when I was younger, and I refused to try new things if I wasn’t confident that I could perform flawlessly. I really regret that.

Tell us something that’s true that almost nobody agrees with you on.

If you don’t have your integrity, you don’t have anything. I will not engage in black hat SEO and I will not accept sponsorships from companies whose products could harm my audience. I just won’t. I know I leave a lot of money on the table because I won’t compromise my standards, but I’m okay with that. People tell me I’m crazy all the time, but I would rather lose the business than lose my integrity.

As an entrepreneur, what is the one thing you do over and over and recommend everyone else do?

Refine your process. Search for the 20%. The Pareto Principle says that 80% of your results come from 20% of your effort. Stop wasting time on the 80% and focus your effort on that 20%. You’ll work less, earn more and live a happier life because of it.

What is one strategy that has helped you grow your business?

I listened to what my audience wanted. In the early days of Low Income Relief, I took requests directly from my readers and gave them what they asked for. If someone needed something, I researched it for them. It helped build a loyal audience that became the bedrock for Low Income Relief.

What is one failure you had as an entrepreneur, and how did you overcome it?

I have wasted a lot of time on side-projects that went nowhere. I didn’t think them through very well and I didn’t take the time to analyze if they were worthwhile. For example, I spent months building an app that I later had to scrap. I learned a lot along the way, but it cost a lot of time that could’ve been spent on more impactful things.

What is one business idea that you’re willing to give away to our readers?

I would love to see someone develop a travel guide app that can sync with your smartphone’s map system and narrate your drive for you with fun facts, history of the area, etc. I think that would be fabulous.

What is the best $100 you recently spent? What and why?

Terkel. I’ve been looking for authentic ways to build links and raise awareness for my business, and Terkel is a great place to connect with journalists. It’s similar to HARO, but HARO is free.

What is one piece of software or a web service that helps you be productive?

Clickup is a great tool for creating to-do lists and organizing tasks with a remote team. I love using Clickup for our content lists so that everyone can keep track of what they’re working on.

What is the one book that you recommend our community should read and why?

The Power of Starting Something Stupid was really impactful to me when I first started my business. Over the years, I’ve realized that a lot of people have really great ideas for businesses but relatively few are willing to take the leap to make it happen. If someone is struggling to get started, The Power of Starting Something Stupid is an excellent read.

What is your favorite quote?

“We are all stories in the end, just make it a good one.” -Doctor Who

Key Learnings:

  • Find a need and fill it.
  • Don’t compromise your standards.
  • 80% of your results are created by 20% of your effort. Focus on the 20%.
Originally published on IdeaMensch.


Interview with Jack Carlson, Founder of Rowing Blazers: History, Tradition, and Innovation



Interview with Jack Carlson, Founder of Rowing Blazers

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Jack Carlson is the founder and creative director of Rowing Blazers, a fashion brand that combines classic American style with a contemporary edge. Jack Carlson, a former national team rower, and scholar of history draw inspiration from vintage sportswear and traditional Ivy League fashion. His passion for design and fashion, combined with his unique background. Jack Carlson has resulted in the creation of a brand that stands out in the industry.

Can you tell us about your background and how you became interested in fashion?

I’ve always had a passion for fashion and design, even while pursuing my other interests. I grew up in Connecticut and started rowing at a young age, eventually competing at the national level. While studying history at Harvard, I became interested in the traditional clothing worn by rowers and began to collect vintage rowing blazers. This sparked my interest in fashion and led me to start designing my own clothing. After completing a Ph.D. in archaeology, I decided to pursue fashion full-time and founded Rowing Blazers in 2017.

What inspired you to start Rowing Blazers?

I wanted to create a brand that celebrated the rich history and tradition of American fashion, particularly the preppy style of the Ivy League. At the same time, I wanted to bring a contemporary edge to classic designs and challenge the boundaries of traditional fashion. I was inspired by the vintage rowing blazers that I collected and wanted to create my own versions that were both authentic and modern.

Can you walk us through the design process of creating a new collection?

The design process always starts with research and inspiration. I spend a lot of time looking at vintage clothing, archival photographs, and historical documents to get a sense of the styles and aesthetics of a particular time period or culture. From there, I sketch out ideas and work with my team to refine the designs and select fabrics. We always strive to balance classic elements with modern twists and unexpected details. It’s a collaborative process that involves a lot of trial and error, but we always end up with something that we’re proud of.

How do you stay true to your brand’s identity while also keeping up with current fashion trends?

For us, it’s not about following trends, but rather creating timeless pieces that will never go out of style. Although we draw inspiration from the past, we don’t limit ourselves to it. We’re always looking for ways to innovate and push boundaries while staying true to our brand’s core identity. We’re not interested in fast fashion or disposable clothing – our pieces are meant to last and be treasured for years to come.

Can you tell us about a particular challenge you faced while growing Rowing Blazers and how you overcame it?

One of the biggest challenges we’ve faced is scaling the business while maintaining the quality and craftsmanship that we’re known for. We’ve had to find the right partners and suppliers who share our values and are able to produce our garments to our high standards. We’ve also had to be very strategic about our growth, taking things one step at a time and not rushing into anything too quickly. It’s been a learning process, but we’ve been able to grow the business in a sustainable way that we’re proud of.

What advice would you give to someone who wants to start their own fashion brand?

My advice would be to stay true to your vision and never compromise on quality. It’s also important to be strategic about your growth and not try to do everything at once. Start small and focus on doing one thing really well before expanding. And always be willing to learn and adapt – the fashion industry is constantly changing, so it’s important to be flexible and open to new ideas.

What’s next for Rowing Blazers?

We’re always working on new designs and collaborations, but we’re also focused on expanding our brand beyond just clothing. We want to create a lifestyle brand that encompasses all aspects of American style, from furniture to home decor to travel accessories. We’re excited to continue growing and evolving while staying true to our brand’s identity and values.

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Jack Carlson’s passion for fashion and history has resulted in the creation of a unique and innovative brand that stands out in the industry. His dedication to quality and craftsmanship, as well as his commitment to sustainability, sets Rowing Blazers apart from other fashion brands. To stay up to date with Jack Carlson and Rowing Blazers, you can follow him on LinkedIn.

Liked this interview? Check out this interview with Gracie Cedres

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Interview with Gracie Cedres: Insights on Entrepreneurship and Work-Life Balance



Interview with Gracie Cedres, Founder of G.R.A.C.E.

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Gracie Cedres is the founder and CEO of G.R.A.C.E., a company that provides virtual assistance and project management services to entrepreneurs and small business owners. With a degree in communications, Gracie has always been interested in helping others succeed in their businesses. Her passion for helping entrepreneurs led her to create G.R.A.C.E., which has been helping entrepreneurs and small business owners increase their productivity and profitability. In this interview, Gracie will share more about her journey as an entrepreneur and the success of G.R.A.C.E.

Can you tell us about yourself and your journey as an entrepreneur?

Sure, my name is Gracie Cedres, and I am the founder and CEO of G.R.A.C.E. I have always been interested in helping others, especially entrepreneurs and small business owners, succeed in their businesses. After completing my degree in communications, I worked as a virtual assistant for various entrepreneurs and realized that there was a need for high-quality virtual assistance and project management services. That’s how the idea for G.R.A.C.E. was born, and since then, I have been working hard to help entrepreneurs and small business owners achieve their goals.

How did you come up with the idea for G.R.A.C.E.?

After working as a virtual assistant for several entrepreneurs, the idea for G.R.A.C.E. came to me. I realized that many entrepreneurs were struggling to manage their time effectively and needed high-quality virtual assistance and project management services to help them become more productive and profitable. I saw an opportunity to help entrepreneurs and small business owners by providing them with top-notch virtual assistance and project management services, and that’s how G.R.A.C.E. was born.

What are some of the challenges you faced in starting and growing your business?

One of the biggest challenges I faced in starting and growing my business was finding the right team members. It’s important to have a team that shares your vision and is passionate about what they do. I also faced challenges in marketing my services and reaching out to potential clients. However, I overcame these challenges by networking, building relationships, and creating high-quality content that showcased the value of my services.

What is your vision for G.R.A.C.E. in the next five years?

My vision for G.R.A.C.E. in the next five years is to become the go-to virtual assistance and project management service provider for entrepreneurs and small business owners worldwide. I want to expand my team and services to be able to help more entrepreneurs and small business owners increase their productivity and profitability. I also want to continue building strong relationships with my clients and providing them with top-notch services.

Can you share with us some of your favorite success stories from working with your clients?

One of my favorite success stories is working with a small business owner who was struggling to manage their time effectively. By providing them with virtual assistance and project management services, we were able to help them increase their productivity, improve their marketing strategies, and ultimately grow their business. It’s always fulfilling to see my clients succeed and achieve their goals.

What advice would you give to aspiring entrepreneurs?

My advice to aspiring entrepreneurs is to educate themselves and never stop learning. It’s important to constantly learn new skills, stay up to date with industry trends, and seek out new opportunities. It’s also essential to have a strong work ethic, be persistent, and not be afraid to take risks. Don’t let failure discourage you, instead use it as a learning opportunity and keep pushing forward.

How do you maintain a work-life balance as a busy entrepreneur?

Maintaining a work-life balance can be challenging as a busy entrepreneur, but it’s essential for your well-being and the success of your business. One of the things I do is prioritize my tasks and delegate when necessary. I also set aside time for self-care activities like exercise, reading, and spending time with family and friends. It’s also important to know when to disconnect from work and focus on other aspects of your life.

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Gracie Cedres is an inspiration to entrepreneurs and small business owners worldwide. Her dedication to helping others and passion for entrepreneurship has led to the success of G.R.A.C.E. With a vision for continued growth and success, Gracie is sure to make an impact in the virtual assistance and project management industry. To learn more about Gracie Cedres and G.R.A.C.E., visit her website and follow her on LinkedIn.

Liked this interview? Check out this interview with Evan Cagner

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Interview with Evan Cagner: Insights into the World of Tech and Entrepreneurship



Interview with Evan Cagner, CEO of TechBlue

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Evan Cagner is the founder and CEO of TechBlue, a company that provides managed IT services to businesses of all sizes. Evan has over 15 years of experience in the tech industry and has helped numerous businesses grow by leveraging technology. He is a thought leader and innovator in the IT industry, with a keen eye for emerging trends and technologies. In this interview, Evan Cagner shares his insights into the world of tech and entrepreneurship.

What inspired you to start TechBlue?

I’ve always been passionate about technology and how it can be used to solve business problems. I started my career working for a large IT consulting firm, and I quickly realized that there was a big gap in the market for managed IT services. Small and medium-sized businesses often struggle to keep up with the latest technology trends, and they don’t have the resources to hire full-time IT staff. That’s why I decided to start TechBlue – to help these businesses leverage technology to grow and succeed.

What sets TechBlue apart from other managed IT services companies?

There are a few things that set TechBlue apart from other managed IT services companies. First and foremost, we are incredibly focused on customer service. We believe that building strong relationships with our clients is the key to our success. Second, we have a team of highly skilled technicians who are constantly learning and staying up to date with the latest technologies. Finally, we are very flexible and can customize our services to meet the unique needs of each of our clients.

How do you stay on top of emerging trends in the tech industry?

I’m always reading and staying up to date with the latest news and trends in the tech industry. I attend conferences and meet with other thought leaders in the industry to discuss new technologies and how they can be used to solve business problems. I also encourage my team to stay up to date and share their knowledge with each other.

How has the COVID-19 pandemic affected the IT industry?

The pandemic has had a significant impact on the IT industry. With so many people working remotely, there has been a huge demand for cloud-based services and virtual private networks (VPNs). There has also been an increased focus on cybersecurity, as remote workers are more vulnerable to cyberattacks. Overall, the pandemic has accelerated the shift toward digital transformation and has highlighted the importance of having a reliable and secure IT infrastructure.

What advice do you have for entrepreneurs looking to start their own businesses?

My advice would be to focus on building a strong team and never stop learning. Surround yourself with people who are smarter than you and who have different skill sets. Be willing to take risks and make mistakes, but also be willing to learn from those mistakes. And finally, don’t be afraid to ask for help or advice from other entrepreneurs who have been through it before.

What is your vision for the future of TechBlue?

My vision for TechBlue is to continue to grow and expand our services to meet the changing needs of our clients. I want to stay at the forefront of emerging technologies and continue to be a thought leader in the industry. Ultimately, I want to help as many businesses as possible leverage technology to achieve their goals.

What do you like to do in your free time?

In my free time, I enjoy spending time with my family and staying active. I’m an avid runner and I also enjoy playing basketball and golf. I’m also a big fan of music and enjoy going to concerts and discovering new artists.

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Evan Cagner is a true leader and innovator in the IT industry. His passion for technology and customer service has helped TechBlue become one of the most respected managed IT services companies in the business. With his keen eye for emerging trends and technologies, Evan is sure to continue to make an impact in the industry for years to come. To learn more about Evan Cagner and TechBlue, you can visit their website or follow them on LinkedIn.

Liked this interview? Check out this interview with Makayla Gordon

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