Meet Ashley — CEO & Founder of Lunya. She’s wearing her usual hats as parent, partner, and business owner, only now all at once. As a parent, she’s now joined at home with the rug rats and husband and implementing social distancing like the rest of us. As a business owner, she’s no stranger to working from home (many of us can attest to receiving a brain dump at 3am). The new challenge: The 24/7 and overlapping nature of both jobs in the context of a quickly moving social and economic landscape.
Cooking, reading, hanging with family, and wondering what (the actual hell) happens next, we’ll be taking you behind the curtain with her and some of the Lunya team over the next couple of weeks to show how we’re spending our quarantime, home but together.
I’m grounded and working from home like everyone else. My days are full of meeting with teams to pivot plans, scenario planning, chatting with other entrepreneurs about how they are handling this, and making meals for the kids and husband.It’s a rollercoaster of emotions and managing my own psychology right now has been a challenge. When the rain lets up, I’ve been forcing myself to go stand outside in the sun to remind myself that the sky is, in fact, not falling.
I’ve never worn more Lunya than I have in this past week. I’m feeling new pressure to rotate my upper torso outfit so I’m not wearing the same Cozy Cotton Silk Henley sweater in every Zoom meeting. I’ve also been leaning pretty hard into the Cozy Cotton Silk Relaxed Short.
I’ve been listening to people on Zoom and the Frozen II soundtrack on repeat since my kids are home. There is this song “When I’m Older” with lyrics that say…
“This will all make sense when I am older Someday I will see that this makes sense One day, when I'm old and wise I'll think back and realize That these were all completely normal events I'll have all the answers when I'm older”
It’s weirdly poignant.
What are you eating (and drinking, TBH?)
That's "Iron Chef" to you. I’m stretching food and my culinary skills to new lengths as I’m forced to make meals with the odd items I was able to purchase at the store. Some dishes I’ve been making are: vegetarian chili which later became chili dogs, lemon and date chicken (thanks to Hilary Kerr’s insta story) served with cauliflower rice with bacon and kidney beans… also so much salami as it’s the only protein I’ve been able to successfully restock. Salami and eggs for breakfast, anyone?
What are you watching?
I’m an idiot and I watched Outbreak. Don’t do it. I balanced it out with some standup from Judah Friedlander.
What are you learning?
I’m learning a lot about the importance of a growing economy.
What are you reading?
So far I’ve been reading @thedeep.life, the news, and I'm planning to start reading Sapiens (again). I feel like pulling up to the species level is oddly helpful in these moments so I don’t get lost in all the daily minutia.
What is keeping you up at night?
I have had less personal interaction with the health aspects of coronavirus itself (thankfully). My thoughts have been heavily around the economic impact at this point. Honestly, I’m up all night obsessing over the tanking economy and its effects on my business and team. I’m trying to get my footing in a new normal where consumer spending is way down and retail stores are closed. I feel an immense responsibility for my team and am grappling with how to balance the needs of the business for survival with the needs of the individuals. There is no playbook for this but I’m working with the team in real time to make a new plan forward.
If you could FaceTime with anyone right now, who would it be?
I want to feel a sense of meaning and connectedness to the earth, humanity, and my personal existence within those things and would love to talk to someone who is spiritually enlightened like Buddha. I want to feel certain in a path and feel at peace with the things that are outside my control. And yet this short experience has changed me so much that I want to shed my old skin and embrace my new perspective when this has passed.
What’s the silver lining in all of this?
A crisis is a great opportunity to learn what people are made of and I’ve learned that I'm blessed to be surrounded by incredible people. I've been up all night with team members alternating between tears and laughter, I've had friends offer to hazmat it up and fulfill orders with me, and the outpouring of support and camaraderie I've felt within the entrepreneur community has been heartwarming.