River Holistic

How River Holistic Found Me.

the place I was working in was going to be closing down, and rather than panicking, I went, “right, I’m going to fix this.”

How River Holistic Found Me.

Picture of Claire Kenny
Claire Kenny

Founder and Owner

River Holistic happened by almost accident. I was renting a space by myself not too far from where River is now, and I needed a new space because the place I was working in was going to be closing down, and rather than panicking, I went,

“right, I’m going to fix this.”

This is how my brain works. If there is a problem or an issue, let’s find a solution rather than fixate on the problem.

So I went into the Herald Newspaper, I know the old school way for looking for properties and it was there. So originally it was advertised as four different units, four separate offices, and I was just going along to look at one of these rooms for my treatment room.

I had run a very busy practice for a very long time and I knew I could sustain my business. This was just during the recession as well, some people thought I was mad doing it, but I had such faith in myself and that’s really important as a self employed person is to have faith in your abilities and your craft.

To be able to say, I can do this, and a lot of hardwork and determination and a lot of stubbornness as well.

I went to see this gorgeous building originally built in 1880, it has a lot of cracks and has a lot of kind of tilted floors, but I love that about the building. So when I viewed it, it was in a blank state. It had just been cleaned up rather than renovated, I went to see it and I got to see all the space with no one else in it. I was like, oh my God, could I?should I? will I?

I rang my mam and dad, as you do. I think I might be doing this, can you come down? My dad has an amazing mind for business, and my mom has my heart, or I have her heart, I should say. She’s also a holistic therapist, retired now, but one of the best ones I’ve known. I’ve even trained with her. So, Thanks, Mum. I brought them along to see the space and I was saying, I think I’m going to do this.

And that was, say, in May, then I had to chat with the landlords and the listing agent and I said, what’s the crack if I can take the whole space and negotiated rents and all that kind of stuff. Again, this was during a pretty hard time for people, so I was worried a bit about, oh God, can I do this? But I knew my own practice, I could do it, it would be very tight. But this was pre-kids and this is what I’m renting and I kind of always have savings.That’s one thing I have to say, as a self employed person, always have your rainy day fund there because you never know when it’s going to rain.

I used my own rainy day fund to secure the lease, buy all the equipment, I think, I put an ad on LinkedIn, I think, and maybe Facebook aswell, saying that I was opening a holistic center and looking for certain therapists, because I wanted to create a space where you could go to one place. I wanted such a broad spectrum of therapies involved, and then classes as well.

I had a tiny, tiny, tiny studio as well that held six people in one of the rooms, and I went for it. I signed the lease in June and I opened up in September.

So it was such a quick, quick thing to do and it has been growing slowly but surely, year on year.

The clients that come to the door, the therapists that I’ve met, the ones that have moved on and have now opened their own practices, is exactly why I chose to open River Holistic in the first place.

I wanted to create a home for me, for my clients, when I was working with my clients and I wanted to create a space for self-employed therapists and teachers where they could actually run their businesses on a fair scale.

I charge just a basic room rent where I wouldn’t take 50% of their earnings. I would help them with their online presence, so it would be that I created the website, and then they got their own website page. So rather than having to go off and create their own website, which is really scary, they then had a page for themselves where they could advertise from as well.

I started off with just a Google Calendar and me as reception. That was it. I got a little desk made, It’s still there, it’s like three foot wide, because if you’ve been into River Holistic, downstairs is very small, it’s cozy and Beiju, I think, is the word that I would like to use, rather than pokey and small.

That’s a little bit of history of what River is to me and to the clients that come in and the therapists that come in as well.

Thanks for listening, watching or reading and loads more information to come


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