You’ve heard the one about the person who was deeply unhappy because they didn’t get what they wanted. Then they did, and realised, it wasn’t what they needed at all.
WITH OUR PLAN B, B MEANS BALANCE
This week we interview Nicola Elliott, Founder & Creative Director, Neom Organics. A real woman’s woman, with a razor-sharp business and creative mind, Elliott defies expectations. Initially the founder of a non-toxic candle company, Natural Magic – one would have expected Elliott’s business plan to be about nailing the pampering side of wellbeing, and pulling in women in need of nothing more complicated than a bit of luxurious TLC. Instead, she eschewed ‘pampering’ and ploughed her energies and acumen into aromatherapeutic wellbeing treatments, that use the highest grade essential oils possible, in unusually complex blends, and in the highest legal concentrations – to produce treatments that can (almost literally) knock your socks off. This stuff does things to your mind! So, Neom Organics was born, and with it, an entirely new candle, body and bath treatment standard – with our founder’s fervent (wax) seal of approval.
What was your Plan A?
Journalism. After university I headed straight to London and got a pokey little flat and started working in magazines, before joining the UK launch team of Glamour magazine, and then moving onto InStyle. I still love writing and scouting out what women really want to hear about! You’ll be able to see my skills put into practice when we launch the Neom Wellbeing Magazine on April 18th.
What is your Plan B?
It’s running Neom all the way. Once you are on the rollercoaster of running your own business, you keep going faster and faster and I love every minute (well most of the time). I’ve always been passionate about wellbeing and feeling good. It started from when I was working that fast-paced journalist life and most of my friends were working crazy hours, so I started making little tinctures of essential oils to help friends when they were stressed or having trouble sleeping, and the responses I got were amazing (Elliott is also a trained aromatherapist). It planted a seed, and as so often happens with start-ups, things snowball out of personal passion.
What unfulfilled dream have you recently fulfilled?
We recently opened our first standalone store and treatment rooms in London (in Wimbledon Village for those who know the area) which has been an amazing project to work on – there’s going to be some exclusive events, including wellbeing talks and classes coming up later this year. Customers can also book in for a Neom Wellbeing Treatment which has been masterminded by our 11 Neom Wellbeing Board of experts, and draw together the most effective of 6 therapies – meditation, shiatsu, cranio, Thai massage, trigger point and reflexology. I had a De-Stress treatment for the first time a few weeks ago and it really surprised me – it’s unlike any other massage I’ve had before, and feedback from our customers has been fantastic.
In an ideal world, how do you begin and end each day?
If everything works as planned (I am sure every woman reading this who is trying to balance work, life, family, friends and more will understand what I mean here), I get up around 6am and go for a run, with our westie puppy Harry. I am running the Great North Run, so it’s good training – I also don’t feel the guilt as the kids are still in bed and my husband is home to get them up, and when I get home breakfast is made!We spend time as a family having breakfast then I drop my two children off at school before heading to the office for 9am. I end the day by leaving work on time, between 5:30-6pm, so I can spend some time with my children, and try my best to unplug until 8pm and the kids are sound asleep.
Sometimes I will work, but in an ideal world, this time is for a bath and unwinding by adding a few drops of the Neom Tranquillity Bath & Shower Oil, practising a mindfulness exercise or even just reading a chapter of one of my favourite books. I’m a big reader and we have a bit of an informal ‘Wellbeing Book Club’ starting in the office. I’ve recently read Eat, Sleep, Move by Tom Rath and we’ve just ordered a couple of copies of Unplugged: The Essential Digital Detox Plan to pass around the team.
What one thought or saying helps you most?
Happiness is always an inside job. This really resonates with me.
What does contentment equate to, for you?
Being content is something you embody, not something you find. All happiness starts from within, and it’s about how you try to become the best version of yourself with the situation you find yourself in. I always say to my kids in the morning, “work hard, play hard and be kind.”
What do you love the most?
My husband, my kids and my family.
What is your favourite season, and why?
Spring! I’m really enjoying the fresh air and being outdoors running and being able to clear my head. There’s always a feeling of ‘coming out of the dark’ in spring and fresh hope, which I love.