There’s no rule that says you have to get everything right the first time you try. Some opportunities don’t feel like life-changers in the moment, and that’s okay, as long you remain open to the full-circle nature of business, like Katerina Papoutsaki from Greece. You can use fresh perspective and time off to make your second impression a lasting one.
Katerina’s inspirational story…
Katerina and her husband Thomas owned a small restaurant empire in Athens, Greece throughout the 90s and early 2000s. Their three kitchens afforded them a great home and allowed Katerina to be a stay-at-home mother to her young daughter Maria.
With her husband running a successful business of his own, Katerina had extra time on her hands and she took interest in Forever Living products after experiencing some weight loss with Clean and Lean, the predecessor to C9, in the mid-90s. For six years she dabbled part-time with being a Forever Business Owner (FBO), and she reached Manager within a few years. Even with her easy success, Katerina never really viewed Forever as a career option and didn’t look too deeply into the business side of the company.
Tragedy struck the Papoutsaki family in the year 2000, and hardship would follow closely behind. Thomas passed away unexpectedly, throwing Katerina’s world into chaos. Not only had they lost a beloved husband and father, but their provider as well. Katerina inherited all three restaurants, unfortunately inheriting substantial debt in the process. She was forced to close the doors on the family business and re-enter the workforce. Katerina worked seven days a week at jobs ranging from babysitting to ironing to part-time work at a retail store. Whatever she could do for her daughter Maria, she did.
Throughout these difficult years, Katerina rarely thought of that aloe vera business she used to entertain from time to time. The products were good, and she was a Manager, but she never really understood what that meant anyway. It never crossed her mind to go back to it – even after many calls from her sponsor, pleading with her to give Forever Living another shot.
In 2009, a member of Katerina’s old team received a promotion and there was an event in Athens to recognise the accomplishment. Not thinking anything of it other than making a nice gesture, Katerina attended the ceremony. Something about the vibe in the room struck her that day – the family feel, the values of hard work and giving back, and most importantly just how happy everyone seemed. The heart of Forever Living was on full display, and for the first time Katerina understood what the Forever business was all about.
She decided to jump back in the following February after nine whole years away. It wasn’t easy at the beginning. Her income took another hit and her friends and family called her crazy for giving up stability. Added to that was the economic crisis that was gripping all of Greece at the time. But Katerina saw the Forever forest and not just the trees.
With determination as her guide and the true meaning of Forever Living clear in her mind, Katerina quickly began winning back her life and providing Maria with all the things she had been deprived of for the previous nine years. This was no more perfectly illustrated than when Katerina gave her entire first bonus cheque to her daughter.
Katerina sees Forever Living as a second chance that was always waiting for her to take. She doesn’t regret the time she spent away from the business because it gave her valuable perspective and taught her to truly appreciate success. Now, Katerina is proud to be a living example of the change in lifestyle made possible through Forever.