interview: Rhiannon Adler on running a slow, gentle + profitable business

One of my key values is community: I love connecting with other small business owners and get inspired by how they run their businesses and live their lives. In this interview series I’m asking lovely small business owners to share how they run a slow, gentle and profitable business. In this post, Rhiannon Adler shares her journey to living a slow and gentle life, and the steps she’s taken to creating a slow, gentle and profitable business. Enjoy!

Rhiannon Adler on slow, gentle and profitable business.

Rhiannon Adler is a creative wellbeing practitioner, and aligned business and website guide.

She collaborates with creative souls and change-makers to build big-hearted businesses, websites and wellbeing projects that feel like home.

She’s also co-director of the Dept. of Kindness, nurturing self-kindness through creativity to make the world a kinder place.

Find out more about Rhiannon on her website.

What does living a slow and gentle life, and having a slow, gentle and profitable business look like to you? What does a day look like for you?

Slow and gentle for me is very much about allowing space for rest in all aspects of my life. It’s about being mindful and aware in my everyday and responding in the moment to what I need.

We only have this one life, and I choose to step away from the frenzy to ‘do more’, ‘be more’ and ‘achieve more’. Instead, I try to enjoy the journey, and live at a pace that allows me to really connect with the world around me. This often means appreciating the small things which can so easily be overlooked, but which fill my life with meaning.


I choose to step away from the frenzy to ‘do more’, ‘be more’ and ‘achieve more’.


Because of this, my days are never the same. I try to have morning and evening routines so I sleep well, but otherwise my days can look completely different.

Generally, I try to allow myself an hour in the morning to wake up and have a check-in. I ask myself how I’m feeling that day, if there’s anything I need to get done for clients, and see what I have the inclination, inspiration, or energy for that day. I have a pretty good understanding of what activities best suit my energy and mind at different times, and so I lean into that.

In practice, I create when I feel creative, I rest when I need to, and sometimes I down tools and go have a coffee with a friend – because those fill-up moments are just as important as the productivity.

Fundamentally, I believe slow, gentle and profitable comes down to understanding yourself, and having the courage to do things in your own way.

Even the words slow, gentle and profitable will mean different things to each of us. What’s slow to me may not be slow to you. What’s profitable to me may not be profitable to you.

Personally, I don’t seek endless wealth or financial profit. I think about what I truly want from my life, and I have a clear idea of how much money I need to sustain that. I think profit also comes in more ways than just money. I’ve gained connections, experiences, and friendships in place of financial rewards at times, and they have been just as profitable, allowing me to grow and flourish in unexpected ways.


Fundamentally, I believe slow, gentle and profitable comes down to understanding yourself, and having the courage to do things in your own way.


What inspired you to live this way? Which choices and changes did you make, or have to make? 

I was diagnosed with ME when I was 21, and it forced me to slow down – quite literally.

If I push myself rather than rest when I need to, it can result in a major relapse. For years it felt like a burden and something I was fighting to overcome, but in more recent years I see it as a gift which has put me on the fast track to gaining a deep understanding of myself and what I truly want from life.

At first I tried to fit myself into a more traditional path in life, which is so hard to do when you live with a chronic illness. Several years ago though I suffered a severe relapse, was made redundant from my job and fell into a depression. Hitting that low really kick-started me on a journey to re-evaluate what I wanted from life.


Learning to let go of long-ingrained thoughts, beliefs and patterns of behaviour has been one of the hardest – but most fulfilling – things I’ve ever set my mind to.


Instead of trying to fit myself into the life I thought I should have, I began to look at other ways of doing things. I started to fit work around me, and prioritised rest and my own wellbeing over achievement. I’m still on that journey, and I think I always will be.

To this day one of my biggest challenges is to allow myself to slow down, even stop, and rest, when I think I ‘should’ be productive… even though I now run my own business and have complete control over when I work. Learning to let go of long-ingrained thoughts, beliefs and patterns of behaviour has been one of the hardest – but most fulfilling – things I’ve ever set my mind to.

What three tips would you suggest for readers who also want to create a slow, gentle and profitable business? 

Look within, not outwards. There are many people who claim to have the best or right way of doing things, but the only person who has the answers to what is right for you… is you.

Eat the elephant one bite at a time. Starting something new or making significant changes takes time, so go easy on yourself. Every step is worth celebrating, and many small steps add up to the bigger steps.

Practice what you preach. When you live what you talk about, it speaks volumes and builds trust. That being said, we’re all human, so don’t expect yourself to be a perfect living embodiment of whatever that is. It’s ok to share your struggles and imperfections too.


Starting something new or making significant changes takes time, so go easy on yourself.


Thank you Rhiannon, for sharing this peek into how you are running a slow, gentle and profitable business. So much of this resonates with me: especially of having to (and/or wanting to) create a life away from the ‘norm’, in tune with our own rhythms and energy.

Find out more about Rhiannon and the work she does as a creative wellbeing practitioner and aligned business and website guide on her website.

If you’d like to answer these questions on slow, gentle and profitable business, do get in touch with me. More interviews on how to run a slow, gentle and profitable small business are coming soon! Sign up for my newsletter below so you never miss one.

And, if you want to create that slow, gentle and profitable business that truly nourishes you, discover how we can work together here.

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