Our Business Spotlight of the week is Encourage Play! Encourage play was started by Janine Halloran in 2013. Janine is a Licensed Mental Health Counselor with over 15 years of experience specializing in children and adolescents. Janine has written several books and has many resources that help children develop social skills through play. Her methods allow kids to develop desirable skills and redirect less desirable skills, all through playful activities. Given the current circumstances with many kids home and out of school we are sure parents can use some helpful resources. Continue to read our interview with Janine Halloran to learn more about her business.
What inspired you to start Encourage Play?
I’m a therapist who works mostly with children and teens. I would always be making up games, or creating activities to use during sessions, then sharing those with my colleagues. I decided to take my business online several years ago so I could reach more counselors and families.
What is your favorite part about your business?
My favorite part is that I mostly work from home, so I can be around to help my kids when they need support. I love the variety and flexibility of being a small business owner. Every day is different, and I feel like I’m always learning something new or finding a better way of doing things.
With many children out of school and at home right now, what resources would you like to promote that parents can take advantage of at this time?
I’ve written a few books that might come in handy.
The first is the Ultimate Playdate Guide, with play ideas for two kids – so it would be perfect for siblings stuck at home together. If you’re out of play ideas, this book might be able to get your creative juices flowing. It’s available as a digital book, so you don’t need to wait for it to come in the mail – you can download it!
If you’ve got kids who are struggling more with their emotions, I’ve also written the Coping Skills for Kids Workbook to help children figure out healthy and safe ways to cope with stress, anxiety, and anger. I also just launched the Coping Skills for Teens Workbook, designed for a tween/teen audience. Both of these books are available digitally as well, so you can download and use it right away!
What has been your biggest challenge that you have overcome as a business owner / entrepreneur? Any tips for other entrepreneurs?
I know how to be a therapist, but before I started a business, I didn’t know much about marketing, accounting, sales, email funnels, etc. I’ve had to learn a LOT along the way about the different aspects of running a business. Finding people to help you run parts of your business that aren’t your strong suit can make all the difference in the world.
Janine also has a sister business, Coping Skills for Kids which was started in 2015. You can find additional resources and products that help your child cope with their emotions such as stress, anxiety and anger. The work she is doing is great, make sure to like her on Facebook and visit her website. You will find many useful blog posts, be able to digitally purchase her books as well as access some free printable activities and resources.
We appreciate Janine taking the time to talk about her business with us, as always, we love to hear everyone’s business journey. We would like to throw on our accounting hat quickly and acknowledge Janine’s tip of finding people to help you run parts of your business that aren’t your strong suit. We absolutely agree with this. If you have a business, we understand in the beginning many people will try to do it all solo, but in reality a better use of your time and money will be to outsource and let people help you. You will see in the long term that your money is working smarter for you and allowing you to become more profitable. Learning when to invest in yourself and business will indeed get you far.
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Visit Encourage Play
Visit Coping Skills For Kids