Anu Paavola is founder of Jivita Ayurveda, London’s only combined Ayurveda spa and retail space, where the core elements of diet, lifestyle, detox and treatments are combined for customer’s health, beauty and wellbeing.
Attracting both seasoned Ayurveda therapy followers and customers curious about alternative therapies and approaches to wellbeing, Anu has successfully managed the challenge of running a new business alongside motherhood for the past three years, securing a phenomenal reputation for the sheer focus on customer experience and ensuring a personally tailored experience for everyone that visits.
Tell us a bit about yourself, background and what you do currently
I am an ayurvedic practitioner, running an organic ayurvedic day spa with a retail area with organic food and beauty products. I come from Finland and have lived in London for 10 years. I am a single mum with a three-year-old daughter who is exactly the age of my business called Jivita Ayurveda.
I am good with my clients but how to make a business run was an adventure, a challenge that has proved to be very rewarding.
Why did you start your business?
I started practicing five years ago by renting a room and receiving clients. After two years an opportunity opened to take over the lease of a place, which allowed me to bring under one roof everything that ayurveda has to offer: consultations, treatments, food and beauty
What appealed to you about setting up your own business?
To raise awareness of ayurveda, an ancient system of healing through synchronising with the cycles of nature. It has tremendous power and it is pretty easy as well. I am on a mission to get people back to understand how to be in sync with the nature.
What has been your biggest challenge?
My biggest challenge so far has been how to run a company. It was totally new to me and somehow I set it out almost on my own without any experience. I am good with my clients but how to make a business run was an adventure, a challenge that has proved to be very rewarding.
What’s been your greatest achievement personally?
To have a child at the same time of setting up a business, and to go through a break up in the process.
If you weren’t doing what you do, what would you be doing?
I would probably have moved to the Mediterranean. It was my plan for a long time.
Who has been your biggest inspiration?
Dr John Douillard, an ayurvedic doctor from Colorado. He is doing a great job getting the message of ayurveda around.
What does the future hold for you?
I want to see the business growing and move more into management. I love the hands on treatments and consultations but also feel the need to get more into the business side of things, learn something new.