Getting a cannabis business off the ground is no easy task. I love what I do, and I’m genuinely happiest when I’m at work: by the cannabis plants, talking to the growers, my marketing team, or at the Eco Cannabis (ecocannabis.net) retail location on Telegraph Avenue hearing how cannabis is helping customers find relief and healing. When I’m not at work, I’m at home with my wife, 3 young boys and our dog, Ralphie - who are an amazing source of light and joy to me. So, I’m not the man with the most spare time on my hands, but when I want to unplug, or get rejuvenated solo, I turn to one of the following:
A Stroll Around Oakland’s Telegraph Avenue and Lake Merritt
Our retail location is on the historic street of Telegraph Avenue (in Oakland), and whenever I get the chance, I take a walk around the block. I often run into Moe, the owner of Telegraph Wine and Spirits next door, who is the second-generation owner of the shop that his father started. The neighborhood has changed so much over the decades. It’s incredible to hear the stories from the leaders in the community who witnessed it all. We also often run into Izzy, the owner of Super Burrito on Telegraph Avenue. He’s another one who’s been around for decades and together as business owners in Oakland, we are part of this vanguard time in history, given the Bay Area’s tech boom, appetite for innovation and the sheer global interest in this place we call home. It’s a great feeling to be a part of it.
Lake Merritt is a beautiful body of water, not far from my shop, with a sidewalk that wraps around the lake. It’s a respite of nature in the center of all the action. A quick stroll by the water resets my perspective.
This is my go-to place for a business lunch or dinner. It has great views of the water and great service. Some of my most successful partnerships were fostered there. I’m a bit of a creature of habit, and I’ve been going to this restaurant for years. Now that I’m a cannabis entrepreneur, I’ve taken this place with me to the next stage of my professional life: when I’m not taking investor meetings at Eco Cannabis retail, I’m meeting potential partners here. I prefer to do business at a restaurant like Scott’s because it’s a good atmosphere to commence and build budding relationships. The cannabis space is so new that there is constantly interest at the investor-level from unexpected pathways. I would not be surprised if someone got in touch with me after reading this digital issue!
Any Live Sporting Event
I was captain of the Men’s Water Polo Team at Cal, so my interest in athleticism and strategy is a lifelong interest. I’m a fan of almost any live sports, but I’m particularly big fan of the Warriors, 49ers (Raiders were in LA when I was growing up) and the A’s. The East Bay stadiums have so much history in the building and structures. It’s inspiring to be with fans and players in a place where sportsmanship comes to life.
I meditate for 20 minutes every day. It’s such a game-changer. There is so much that can go off-kilter in a day, and this daily practice is a time to cultivate calm, strength and vision. I lean on this foundation as I move through the day while I’m putting out fires, juggling balls and spinning plates to lead my company and team forward for the next big win.
I recently had hip surgery, and in my recovery have loved the daily practice of stretching. It’s been so transformational that I’m instituting a morning stretching time for my entire team. More than getting circulation going, it’s a time to spark kinesthetic energy.
Each day as a cannabis entrepreneur is a different bag, and these are some of the activities that come to mind when I think about what helps me to be my best self. ecocannabis.net