Get the Balance Right

Ep. 93: Passion, Grit and Determination: An Artist Success Story (Guest Arastasia Rolain from The Passion and Potential Podcast) [From Passion To Profits Series]

April 20, 2022 Heather Zeitzwolfe Season 2 Episode 93
Get the Balance Right
Ep. 93: Passion, Grit and Determination: An Artist Success Story (Guest Arastasia Rolain from The Passion and Potential Podcast) [From Passion To Profits Series]
Show Notes Transcript

In the second installment of our series, From Passion to Profits, we’re joined by an entrepreneur who embodies the art of pursuing your passion and saying “heck no!” to fear!

Today, we’re speaking with the talented artist and successful, Arastasia Rolain! Forget starving artists. Arastasia built a business making art and money through her grit, determination, and passion! She is a photographer, painter and coaches others to tap into their gifts. She’s also the host of The Passion and Potential Podcast where she inspires others to shift their mindset and let go of their fears.

Follow or Contact Arastasia: Instagram - Website
Passion and Potential: Podcast - Murals  - Instagram

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Heather Zeitzwolfe: “Arastasia Rolain, welcome to Get The Balance Right podcast!”

Arastasia Rolian: “Thank you, happy to be here.” 

Heather Zeitzwolfe: “I'm so excited to have you here. You are such a bubbly, fun personality. I love being in the same space with you. You make me smile, but it's amazing to me that you have kind of a background that was sort of a rough and sad kind of background. 

And people can hear all about that on your podcast, which you did an amazing job explaining that. I had tears in my eyes. It was done so eloquently. So I don't want to go too far back into like all the rough stuff, because you've really broken out of that. Now you're flourishing and you are working in your passion. If people want to hear about that background, they can listen to your podcast.

So let's first start from that. What is the name of your podcast?”

Arastasia Rolian:Passion and Potential. And I help entrepreneurs embrace their passions, discover those passions and then realize their potential within to create a passionate life from them and create a business. And realize that passions don't have to be hobbies, they can be careers. 

And also understand that potential within them to try the things that are hard to try to things that scare them, get over the imposter syndrome and really make a life that brings them joy. Because I don't think you have to stick in jobs that you hate. I hate that for people. So it's embraced your passions, but realize your potential within to do so.”

Heather Zeitzwolfe: “If you don't mind me asking, how old are you?”

Arastasia Rolian: “So I'm 29. I'll be 30 in August. I'm like a couple months away.” 

Heather Zeitzwolfe: “I wish that I had that confidence when I was your age to actually step into my passion. It took me into my fifties to finally become an entrepreneur. Even though I wanted to do many things. I have a feeling though that it was your childhood that gave you self-reliance that helped you become an entrepreneur. Do you think that's the case?” 

Arastasia Rolian: “Absolutely. I think I grew up seeing a lot of people, very unhappy, very unfulfilled in their life. And I told myself from a very young age, my biggest goal is to not be that. And so even though I had a lot of roadblocks and things that had to kind, of hurdles I had to jump over, the drive was there from a very young start. And so ultimately that passion was there. Like the fire was there. I just had to get past the icky to make it happen.”

Heather Zeitzwolfe: “You took a leap of faith by starting your own photography business. Tell us about how that came about.” 

Arastasia Rolian: “Absolutely. So growing up, I always had passion for photography. I was never trained in it or anything. But I would like steal my mom's camera and take pictures of my siblings and the older I got, the more I realized I would love to have it as a career, even though I kind of had all those roadblocks in the way. As I kind of navigated into being a young adult, I stumbled into a full-time marketing job, which was an office job.

And I loved the marketing side. I love the learning. I actually hated the job though. And I had this breaking point in my life where I was like, ‘I am too young to be miserable in a nine to five, this is ridiculous. I have a passion for photography. I have a skill in it. I'm going to go all in and I'm going to open a business and I'm going to force myself to do it because I will not be in this job the rest of my life. I cannot do that’. Life is too short.”

Heather Zeitzwolfe: “That's amazing. When I was your age, I wanted to open up a nightclub and I really wanted to do it, but my family was just like, ‘You want to start a business? How could you do that?’, like all this negativity. I come from a loving family and my background was far different from yours.

I was the baby of the family and I think that my family wanted to protect me all the time and treat me like a baby. But you actually helped out your siblings and you became almost like the mama figure for a while. I would imagine this really helped you on your path to be like, ‘I'm going to do this’.”

Arastasia Rolian: “It plays a really big role in kind of the maturity at that age. Cause I was only 21 when I started embarking on this journey, I was very young. And so I think I had some maturity on. But also in one aspect, it also was a little bit of a hindrance because I did have this attachment to taking care of them and the idea of being “selfish”, to focus on myself and open my own business was this big complex of, ‘Am I allowed to do something for me?’.” 

Heather Zeitzwolfe: “Yeah. Maybe part of it is also thinking if I can build something better than my family can flourish as well from your success. Take us back to that point where you're like, ‘I'm going to start doing photography. I don't have a degree in this, but I have a passion for it’. I know that you moved and everything. Tell us about what happened.”

Arastasia Rolian: “Well, I had originally started doing photography before I went full-time in the business. I first learned about it being a career option during my senior internship to graduate high school. Everyone had to do essentially like a three month internship, and then you're supposed to write a paper about it.

And of course I'm over here, like ‘photography!’. Like this is my passion. I'm going to find someone to work with throughout the years, I kind of worked side hustles through her. Understood it could be a career. But it wasn't until, like I said, I was miserable in that marketing office job that I said, ‘No, we're going to go all in’. 

Leading up to that, I think I put a lot of focus into how unhappy I was and how much potential I had within my self to do something bigger in life. So I kind of started thinking of it as more of a reality. And I started kind of putting money aside. I had just a tiny bit of equipment, but I made sure to take good care of that equipment.

And then once I hit that breaking point of, ‘I cannot do this a minute longer, I've got to go embrace a passionate life and open my own business’, that was when I said, ‘I've got a couple thousand dollars in my savings. I'm going to move 800 miles away from home. And I'm going to force myself to do this’. 

I have no excuses at that point. I mean, what are you going to do the miles away and give up? No. So I kind of forced myself.” 

Heather Zeitzwolfe: “Okay. Well, and you had a little bit of a safety net, I mean a few thousand dollars of a safety net, but it's still, it's kind of a scary thing you go to in this place that you haven't lived before. How did you start getting clients?

Like, did you have to do a lot of hustling around it? How did you do it?”

Arastasia Rolian: “I took advantage of the fact that I love people. So I did a lot of networking. And sometimes it was networking in a way that allowed me to photograph someone for free, but knowing that that could kind of snowball into clients. So the town I moved to was very community-based that they really supported local musicians and local businesses.

And so I would take my camera everywhere with me. And if there was a local band at the wine bar down the street on Friday, night I was there photographing the band and I was photographing the people, watching the band, and then I would pass out cards to people and say, ‘You want to see these photos head over to my website or to my Facebook page and you could see them’.

 And through a lot of networking, and I guess probably a little bit of hustling, because at this point it's not like I'm making money from these opportunities. But through that, I just started making more connections. And then this person said, ‘Hey, would you be interested in photographing me for this?’.

And I just built up that client base and that referral system as well.” 

Heather Zeitzwolfe: “Wow. Okay. So you were just kind of going out there and showing people your talents and then the business cards and all of that. You mentioned Facebook. So how far back was this? Was this like before Instagram was sort of a thing?”

Arastasia Rolian: “Yeah, Instagram was present, but it definitely wasn't the social media place like it is now. 

Instagram was kind of people are using it, but there wasn't stories. There wasn't reels. Facebook was the main bucket at that point in time. I would always upload to my Facebook. I would create an album. I would tell people to go to it and I'd ask them to tag themselves in their friends.

I would tag the businesses. I would share it to the businesses page and I really just allowed this community aspect of networking with people and other businesses to help me put my name out there and let people know, ‘Hey, I'm here, I'm a photographer. Hire me’.”

Heather Zeitzwolfe: “Now people start to see you. You start to get some traction. This is your first business. How did you know even how to price? Did you go out there and look at like, what other people were doing? Like, how did you put together offers, tell us how you did it.”

Arastasia Rolian: “So I'm shaking my head and I'm cringing.”

Heather Zeitzwolfe: “Well, we have to start from somewhere, you know, and, and this is a tough thing for people to do."

Arastasia Rolian: “It really is. And also being young. Also being a young female and also being a young female with a lot of financial trauma from her childhood. I was absolutely probably undercharging, but I still know I was never the lowest. I always made sure I was not the budget photographer, because I didn't want to be that.

I just wasn't at a place to be the luxury photographer yet. So if anything, I think I kind of researched the market and I found this middle ground. Looking at hindsight, I probably should have done more analyzation of my cost of doing business, all of those aspects. But I was still profiting, I just wasn’t profiting in a way that I could, if we're being honest.”

Heather Zeitzwolfe: “Yeah. And this is something all entrepreneurs struggle with. And especially if you're following your passion, it's like these things come sometimes easy to us. And so we feel kind of guilty, 'like, oh, I got to charge somebody for this? I love to do it’.

But you know, you have to make money at the same time. So it is kind of that, that balance. And in the beginning, I imagine, would you, did you have like some imposter syndrome about the whole thin?”

Arastasia Rolian: “Oh, yeah. I had so much imposter syndrome, especially being the young one. And I came into this town, like I said, which was very close knit.

And there are these old timers that have been there for the last 40 years. And I walked in and I'm like, ‘Hey, I'm the photographer in town now’. And it was very intimidating and I would really kind of second guess myself and be like, ‘Are you allowed to charge this much?’.”

Heather Zeitzwolfe: “When you first started out, did you have role models and not just necessarily like people in your life, like a mentor, like, were you seeing other people out there in the industry that you were kind of trying to follow their path? Or were you just winging it?”

Arastasia Rolian: “A little bit of both. I was definitely a part of Facebook groups where I saw other very successful photographers.

And one of the groups I think was literally called Profitable Wedding Photographers. I was a part of these groups. And I was able to look at them as inspiration, not so much comparison, but inspiration of you can get to this point and you can make this much money. I just had to find that in myself both in a skilled way and in a self worth way.”

Heather Zeitzwolfe: “This is amazing to me. You went out there, you did all this stuff. And then what type of jobs started to come in? You mentioned weddings. I mean, that's where a lot of photographers start, weddings and maybe for business type stuff. What, what were you doing? And did it ever include video or were you concentrating just on photography?”

Arastasia Rolian: “It actually wasn't even weddings that came first. I ended up doing weddings because I found them to be most enjoyable and I wanted to be in that niche. When I first started, it was a lot of family, a lot of kids, a lot of events. I got hired from the town to photograph a lot of the events in the chamber of commerce. It was a very tight knit town.

So anytime they had a big charity event, I was getting hired to do those for the newspaper, but also the local website that gave everyone the ins and outs. So a lot of events and a lot of family and kids. And then that kind of snowballed into more and I would get referrals and then more referrals. And then I eventually stumbled into weddings by really linking up with a wedding planning company in town.

And so it was kind of that business to business networking and they really enjoyed my services and they gave me the majority of their referrals.”

Heather Zeitzwolfe: “Yeah. That is one of the key things is getting aligned with somebody that is working in the same industry as you, but not having the same offer, but you can use, I wouldn't say, use each other, but you can help each other out with that. 

So that's awesome. Then you went on to follow other passions in your life. Did the podcast come next or doing the murals or what was the next thing in your passion phase?”

Arastasia Rolian: “So next thing in my passion phase was painting. I had really loved painting and so I started offering paint classes, essentially like the paint and sip classes.

I would teach, people would learn, but they'd also have a creative night where they realized that, Hey, they could paint something if they like, but I just kind of helped guide them. That eventually grew into virtual paint parties during the pandemic. Cause I was like, oh, I can't be around people. Crap, I like people.

And then I started the. Four months after I started the podcast, I painted my first big wall mural.”

Heather Zeitzwolfe: “Wow, how did that come about? Were you just kind of asking people to do that?”

Arastasia Rolian: “Well it's funny, you’re going to learn that I love people and that just fuels my whole life so I am very, very open about my art.

I put it out there into the world. I mean, I share time-lapse videos. I share behind the scenes. I share finished paintings. I put them on Facebook, Instagram. I really let people know that I love art. And way back when in South Carolina, when I was still living there, I met another business owner. He owns restaurants. 

Ironically enough, he now lives in Ohio where I live, and he had seen that I do art by me putting it on Facebook. And he reached out and said, ‘I'm opening up a new restaurant in Ohio, I remembered you moved back to Ohio. Would you be interested in painting a mural on the wall?’. And I was like, ‘heck yes’. So it's funny connections, but it's also really putting myself out there, regardless of any fears I have.

I may not be the best artist. No, duh. Everyone's going to have someone better than them. And so it's just putting myself out there, letting people find the opportunity to hire me and not hiding away out of my own fears or my own opinions of myself.” 

Heather Zeitzwolfe: “Wow. Did you have formal training in painting? I mean, you're an amazing painter.”

Arastasia Rolian: “Nope. I just learned it by accident. I was told my senior year of high school that I wouldn't graduate because I didn't have an art credit. And I was like, ‘AWell, crap, we got this far, oh my gosh’. And so I took an art. It was like a basic art class, started painting. And I was like, ‘Hey, I really liked this’. And as the years went on, I just kept painting more and more. And the more you do, the better you get and you also learn what you like. 

And so I learned styles I like, and I learned what kind of mediums I like. I'm all self-taught. I just think I have almost trained myself because I would do something. And I'm like, ‘I don't like the way that looks’. So I try a different technique and I'm like, ‘Oh, I do look like that one though’.”

Heather Zeitzwolfe: “That is amazing. Well, you definitely have a born talent for painting because your paintings are amazing. So take me back to this moment where now you're going to do a mural in a restaurant. That's a big deal, because I've done some paintings years ago. I used to paint t-shirts and jackets and paint like objects, like furniture and stuff.

And you know, that's, these are small potato things. You're talking about a giant wall in a place where, restaurants, they spend thousands and thousands of dollars to fix this place up. How did you know, like what you were going to put up there? Did you make a mock up? Had you done a wall that size before?

Like, were you nervous?”

Arastasia Rolian: “I've never done any wall. Never done was a canvas like this big. So I went into it first of all, with kind of setting the tone with the business owner. I was like, ‘I do my best artwork when I don't have limitations. So if you would like me to stick to a certain theme, I can accommodate that, but all in all, I don't want to paint something exactly like a replica of what you want’. Right. 

I don't want to copy someone else's art, but I also want to be able to creatively do this that lets me be the most expression that I can. And so I told them, I was like, ‘I can give you a general idea, but are you opposed to me just being chaotic?’

That's what I call it. I'm like, ‘Can I just creatively paint chaos on your wall?’ And he's like, ‘What does that mean?’. I'm like, ‘Sorry, that means that my brain gets in the zone for hours. Do you trust me?’. And so he was like, ‘I do, I've seen your work. I know your style, go to town’. And so I sat and I stared at the wall for literally, I think it was probably like an hour and I stared and I stared and I'd like to like this with my finger, cause I was envisioning it and then I would start painting.

And so I essentially decided that I would incorporate his restaurant. So it's a breakfast and lunch place it's called the Cracked Egg. And I did flying pancakes and a big rooster. And then I also incorporate very passionate sides of me, which was like water and sunflowers. And I put like this inspiring quote on the wall that said, ‘Stay close to people who feel like sunshine’.

And it ended up being a really cool piece, but all in all, I went into it with setting expectations of do you have something in mind or can I just do my thing? And he said, ‘Do your thing’.”

Heather Zeitzwolfe: “Wow. So did it just kind of build upon itself, like where you're like, ‘Okay, I'm going to put a pancake here and then a waffle over there’, or were you sort of mapping it out as you went?

So that's just amazing to me. Cause like, I'm thinking about like, you're going to make a sign for a yard sale by putting in yard sale and you realize, 'oh my God, I don't have enough room for that E’. Like, you got to think about how the spacing is going to be. Did you kind of have to like step back and look like, how did you do this? This is amazing to me.”

Arastasia Rolian: “I started off with my big sun because I wanted to use that quote. I knew I liked that quote. And then with the big sun, that was the starter point. And then I said, I want to paint a rooster in that side. And then as I went on, I just kind of let it keep forming. And the only thing he did say he wanted was the Canton bridge, which in Ohio has the football hall of fame over it.

The only thing in terms of mapping out that I made sure to do was I let the wall transition into having enough space to put that bridge. So I let the water kind of like fade into it and let the sunset fade into it. But all in all, I started with one staple vision in mind, which was the sun and the quote.

And then I let the creative chaos take over.” 

Heather Zeitzwolfe: “You are really following your passion. So you're like, ‘I've got an idea. I'm the artist’ and you'll follow your own passion and your ideas. This is amazing. So after you do this one wall, did other people see it? And you could just other jobs from that, or did you have to kind of hustle around what was the next step?”

Arastasia Rolian: “No. So the next step was someone saw it on Facebook and this is why I always encourage people to put their stuff themselves out there and utilize social media in a creative way. Because a lot of people are fearful to put themselves on social media because they're scared someone's going to say they're not the best.

That doesn't matter. What matters is you and your opportunities. And so I put my wall out there and I kind of built some hype around it. I allowed people to see little tiny sneak peaks, but I didn't let them see the whole wall until the very end. And so I put it out there. I tagged the business and I said, ‘My first wall mural, this has been a dream of mine, my whole life and Wahlburgers in Downtown Cleveland’.

The general manager saw it online and she reached out to me and said, ‘We actually have this big wall on our back patio. It's an incredible spot. It's literally in the middle of downtown. You can see the buildings it's next to the casino, which is a massive touristy spot. Are you open to painting a mural on that wall for us? And if so, what does this look like for you?’. 

And I was like, ‘Absolutely!’. And now this one was outside. So I've never painted outdoor walls and it's also massive. So I'm up on like a giant ladder, which was much different than the restaurant one, but I said, absolutely. And then we began that process and they gave me a little bit of must have visions and I said, ‘Okay, I can meet those, are you all right with me being very creatively, expression it with the rest of the wall?’ and they said, ‘We've seen your other work. We trust you go for it’.”

Heather Zeitzwolfe: “Now you're outside. I would imagine there's a different type of paint that you have to use, and maybe you have to prime the wall and do all that. How did you know how to do all that with the, wall, you just figured it out? Watch a YouTube video?"

Arastasia Rolian: “I mean, no, I just use the same paint and then I sealed to the wall with an outdoor sealant that way sun or anything, it would be long lasting. And that was the only thing I was a little bit unaware of. What do I seal this wall with? 

And my boyfriend, he does like woodworking and all that stuff. And he's like, ‘Oh, Apollo, your thing, duh duh duh’ and I was like, ‘Sounds good’.” 

Heather Zeitzwolfe: “Wow. Okay. Now you've done this wall outside. I love this idea of like showing people just a little bit and having some curiosity around that. So you still, you've done a restaurant, you've done an outdoor wall. How do you know again, how to price these things and are they paying for the paint or do you have to work the pain into the price?

Like that seems like that'd be kind of tricky. You don't know how much paint you're going to use.”

Arastasia Rolian: “Right. So the good news is the paint I use isn't expensive, so that wasn't a big overhead for me. I wasn't using like outdoor fires, you know, all the gallons of expensive paint. That's like $40 a gallon. I was using paint that I was comfortable with and I was just making sure to seal it at the very end, I went into this with knowing that the cost of doing it was minimal.

It was mostly going to be my time. The very first one I had was the crack egg one. And he said, ‘Hey, this is my budget for this. I can pay you this much. Are you comfortable with that?’ And I want to say it was like $1,200. And to me, I was like, ‘Absolutely’ because I knew that murals was on my bucket list. But two, I knew I had to start somewhere, the fact alone that I was making any money from it.

I was like, ‘Heck yes’. I mean, like, literally I hate to admit this, but I probably would've done it for free because it really was like a dream of mine. I didn't realize it could eventually progress into a big part of my business. At this point in time, I was just like, oh my God, I've been doing this my whole life.

So that one kind of set the beginning tone. So then when I went into the next one, it was ‘All right, well, I got paid as much for this one. It was this amount of square footage and it took me this many days’ and I could kind of use that as the framework. And then the more I did, the more I learned what the value in it was that I wanted. My time and also the impacts of like, if this is for a business and it's a big advertising piece, that's a little bit different, doing someone's nursery in their home. 

So I just thought it with that base layer and built off of that, I didn't do a ton of market research because I really just wanted to do it. But I also made sure that I was never selling myself too short.

If someone was like, I'll give you 200 bucks, that would have been like, this is going to take me two days and I cannot do that.”

Heather Zeitzwolfe: “Yeah, yeah. Talking about doing nurseries. So how did that branch out? How did you go from painting, like restaurant, an outdoor wall, and now doing people's homes? Do people just find you on Facebook and be like, ‘I want you to paint my nursery.’?”

Arastasia Rolian: “Yeah. It was a little bit about mostly social media marketing. People would see that I was doing stuff and they would say,’Oh, could you do that in my home?’. Like absolutely. So wine too. I would also put my paintings out there that weren't on big walls. It still feels like a very floral kind of more nursery, girly type painting.

Someone would say, ‘I really like your flowers in this, do you think you could do it on my wall?’. I'd say, ‘Yes’. And then I also started working on my Google presence and I did finally get my first mural that was straight from Google. No connections.”

Heather Zeitzwolfe: “Wow. Was all of this local then, right? This was more like a local community type thing.”

Arastasia Rolian: “Yeah. This is all local. The wine who found me on Google was about an hour away from me. So we had no mutual connections, but everyone else was pretty much local, kind of saw what area I was in. And now I'm trying to book murals all across the US. Like I want to do one in Florida next to the ocean and tap into my mermaid heart.

And so I am like manifesting that, but I'm also putting it out there every time I complete a mural. I tell people, ‘This is what's next on my bucket list. If you know of anyone or if you are someone hit your girl up. I will do it’.”

Heather Zeitzwolfe: “Yeah. You're putting your passion out into the universe. I think that whole mermaid thing has got to happen.

That is so cool. All right. So now you've done this, then you start a podcast. So tell us about your podcast and who the audience is and how'd you get started with that?”

Arastasia Rolian: “So I started the podcast in 2021, like very beginning of the year. It was my new year's launch. I started hyping it up before that. And I'd always wanted to do the podcast.

It was another thing that was on my bucket list. And if you go in my old notebooks, you'll see, start a podcast with all this strategy. And I was like, that was like 2018. And I just kind of would suppress my passions, even though I knew I had them in me. And so basically by the time I got to 20, 21, I was like, screw it. You're being an apologetic. You're putting yourself out there. There's no more fear. There's no more imposter syndrome. There's no more perfectionism. You're doing the things. So I launched the podcast and my first episode was Overcoming Perfectionism. That is what the whole deterrent was. And as I continued doing the podcast, I kind of messily navigated it.

Cause I knew nothing about podcasting. I just knew I had a lot of passion in me, a story, and a lot of desire to inspire and help others. As it continued to grow it kind of niched into creative entrepreneurs. That is what the audience started to become. That is what the audience was most engaging with. And I realized that is the person I'm speaking to because I share a lot about my story.

And I'm a creative entrepreneur who decided to embrace her passions. And that is the people who are hearing my story and saying, ‘I want to do that. I also hate my job and I also have this love for digital art or makeup styling or photography. I really wish it wasn't a hobby though’.”

Heather Zeitzwolfe: “Okay. So it's actually more niche where it's people that want to break out of that nine to five and really start to follow their passions.

That sort of transition point, does that?”

Arastasia Rolian: “Yes. And the thing is right now, it's a little bit of both. It's one people who want to leave the nine to five and they've they're fed up, they just don't know how. It's also people who have already left the nine to five, but they don't understand how to keep this passion a long lasting business.

They're still kind of in that hobby mindset because they don't understand the business side of things. And they're also still struggling with all those mental health or self-worth issues of imposter syndrome and fear of making money. It's a little bit of both right now. There's two people I'm talking to, but all in all, they have the same goal and it's to have a happier life where their careers are involved in something they're passionate about.”

Heather Zeitzwolfe: “Was that the catalyst now that you help people, you do coaching with around finding your passion? Explain what is that exactly.”

Arastasia Rolian: “Yeah. So I offer coachings for creative entrepreneurs and I've had some people who aren't, they're still passionate about doing something to care about.

The all-in-all majority passionate entrepreneurs, and I help them by analyzing their brand, analyzing their goals. I give them accountability because that's another thing that people struggle with is. That accountability to not give up and that accountability to keep pushing forward, even when it gets difficult.

And I was that resilient, young 20 year old, but that's because I was so desperate to make sure I made this life. I am here now to give these people that little push under their butt with a to-do list of do X, Y, Z, and you're going to grow so much. So we do a lot of social media marketing, but we also do a lot of branding, analyzing that.

And then we'll also look at their cost of doing business and I'll just give it to them straight. You're not profiting at this point. This is going to be a hobby the rest of your life, or you're going to burn out and you're going to end up having to give up this dream of yours as a business. We work through the tangible stuff, but we also will end every single business training with some mental health work and mindset work.

And I'll ask them, ‘What’s deterring you the most right now?’. And I'll give them some encouragement and some affirmations and some ways to handle that because I know firsthand how much that can keep you from chasing your dreams or embracing them fully.” 

Heather Zeitzwolfe: “And you have a lot of followers on Instagram, the people that are listening to the podcast and that you're coaching, do they skew more in your age group?

What is the niche that we're talking about?”

Arastasia Rolian: “At this point in time? It's mostly twenties to late thirties. I've had some people who are in their forties to fifties, kind of become very attached to the podcast. And that's because like you were saying, at 50 years old, you finally were like, ‘I want to open a business’.

And one thing I try and really instill in them is that it's never too late. You can always move forward. You don't have to focus on the fact that, ‘Well, I'm 52 years old, my time is done’. No way, heck like make the best of whatever life you have. No matter what age it is. 

So majority 20 to late thirties, but I do have some that are kind of getting into that age group, but, and I love that because I'm like you deserve passion in life.”

Heather Zeitzwolfe: “Exactly. Yeah. People, when they get older, they feel like, ‘Oh, that's done and over with’. I love listening to the voices of younger people, because it's a different perspective. Growing older, you have a lot of wisdom, but you also have sort of attitude about things like, ‘Eh, you know, I can't do this’. You get jaded.”

Arastasia Rolian: “And you create like false realities in your brain of, ‘No, this is the way it is’. But in reality, your reality could be what you want it to be.” 

Heather Zeitzwolfe: “Exactly younger people, they have this idea of more possibilities. Like the world is out there and we can really learn from younger people. I love your podcast. It doesn't matter your age, I think you can listen to the podcast.”

Arastasia Rolian: “Yeah. I don't really focus on age.

That's why I never say things like I help young entrepreneurs. Cause I don't think it's about that. I think it’s individuals who want to embrace the passion in life and make it something for their life. I don't know about the number.”

Heather Zeitzwolfe: “Yeah, age is just a, it's just a number, right? You're a very compassionate person.

So it didn't surprise me to find out that you're also a vegan. When did you become vegan?”

Arastasia Rolian: “So I was 14 when I became vegetarian, I was really young. It was, and I actually tried to become a vegetarian when I was like seven. We lived on a farm randomly, don’t ask, I don't know how we ended up there cause we live in Cleveland now. But we lived on a farm and I had a literal meltdown screaming match with my dad.

And he was like, ‘You eat what's put in front of you’. And I was like, no I won’t, I saw you take that pig to the butcher shop’. And so my dad didn’t let me. And then when him and my mom divorced, I was 14 and I was like, ‘Mom, I'm not eating meat’. She was like, ‘I don't really care, do what you want. Just make your own dinner’.

So, yeah. And then the older I got, the more I just realized that dairy wasn't even something in my diet, it would make me really sick. And it's not even like, I really cared for it. And I kind of transitioned into, I think I'll go full vegan rather than just being vegetarian, but the heart was there. I was like a passionate little kid that was going to fight everybody if they made me eat that piggy, which I did fight them.”

Heather Zeitzwolfe: “Well, I think a lot of kids would actually become vegetarian or vegan if their parents would have allowed them because a child can see the atrocity, like go to a grocery store and you pass by the meat aisle, like people don't put the two and two together. But children, they look at books and they see like pictures of cows, cow goes moo, interacting with that kind of stuff.

If a kid knew that that was what was in the supermarket, I think that they would want to go vegetarian because I feel like children have more compassion in their heart. So that's very cool. I'm so glad that you were able to fight that, stand up for your rights and become a vegetarian and then a vegan. That's so cool.”

Arastasia Rolian: “Yeah, it's funny. The first time I went to my dad's, after my parents divorced, he like went to serve us dinner, and I was like, ‘I don't eat that’ this little banter seven year old came out of me at 14. And he's like, ‘What do you mean?’ And I was like, ‘I don't have to anymore’. And he's like, ‘oh my God, I'm done with you’. It was like my like power move.” 

Heather Zeitzwolfe: “You following your passion, is there anything new that's on the horizon for you? Or are you sticking with what you're doing or is there some new, exciting thing that you're going to try?” 

Arastasia Rolian: “No, I am trying to actually be more targeted and clear. Because I'm a very passionate person and I also have ADHD.

I can go squirrel and off-course, and that's kind of been something that I've realized if I was more focused throughout my business, I probably could have grown quicker. And in ways I wanted to. So my goal right now is to get to an additional 10 murals within the next year. I've painted 11 so far. So I would like to do another 10.

And I really just want to put a lot of focus into the podcast doing murals as a creative freedom. That's like more of my heart. It's not going to be the big money maker in the business, but it will be a little bucket of the business. And then I'm growing the photography business to allow other creatives to have passions under my brand.

So that's been something new where I've brought on a wedding coordinator because she likes to plan. And even though she's not a photographer, I've really built up this brand of air stage photography here. I'm just trying to stick to what I'm already passionate about right now, but grow it bigger and allow myself to really embrace it, not only for me, but other people inside of it.”

Heather Zeitzwolfe: “Well, you're such an inspiration. That is so awesome. So tell people how they can find you where you are on the internet and tell them again the name of your podcast.” 

Arastasia Rolian: “Yes. Okay. So my podcast is Passion and Potential. You can find it on Spotify, Apple, really anything that you listen to. 

You can go to my website, Or if you just go over to my Instagram, I have everything there it's @Arastasia. Let me spell it, I know it's complicated: A R A S T A S I A. And yeah Instagram is where I’m primarily at, but I do still share to Facebook, still present there.

I have my Facebook group for the podcast. But really, if you need to find anything, you can go to Instagram and my little link in the bio will direct you in everywhere you need to go.”

Heather Zeitzwolfe: “For the Facebook group, is that something that's open to any creative entrepreneur that wants to join?”

Arastasia Rolian: “Yeah. It's for anyone who wants to embrace their passion.

So you don't even have to quite be an entrepreneur yet, but if you feel like you need some inspiration to embrace your passions and to get over some of those limiting beliefs around it. But also, if you are a creative entrepreneur, it's very beneficial because I do a lot of Facebook lives where I'll give tips, I'll do challenges, I share marketing dares. 

I also do Marketing Monday and I'll dare people to do something on social media. So it's a really good spot to learn a lot. But if you're also someone who just wants to be inspired, I share a lot of motivational and inspirational quotes and little pick me up.” 

Heather Zeitzwolfe: “Oh, that's so great. Arastasia, thank you so much for being on the podcast today!”

Arastasia Rolian: “Thank you for having me, Heather. It was wonderful!”