Nutribuddy was not something that was created overnight. It was a project that took years of planning, coming up with ideas and a lot of creativity. But why did I want to set-up Nutribuddy in the first place?
To delve into why I wanted to create Nutribuddy, we’d have to go back quite a few years to when I was fresh out of school and in my first term at University.
I Quit University to Set Up Nutribuddy
It was late 2013. I was a 19-year-old student in my first year of University who was coming home for Christmas with a big, crazy idea. It wasn’t just an idea, I’d actually made a decision and it hadn’t been easy. I was going to quit University and set up a business.
I told my parents on Christmas day after they’d had a glass or two of wine. They always take news better once they’ve had a glass. Plus they were surrounded by family, laughing away in the festive spirit. Still, I don’t think anything could have quite prepared them for my news. Naturally, they were slightly disappointed. What parent wants to see their child drop out of University? But they didn’t argue with me. They knew I’d made up my mind.
It wasn’t that I didn’t like my University. In all honesty, I don’t think I was cut out for the entire education system, like so many people. School runs a ‘one size fits all’ scheme and if you don’t fit, you’re left to feel stupid and strange, a ‘misfit’ perhaps. That’s how I felt. I hated school. I wasn’t popular, I wasn’t academic and I wasn’t understood by any of my teachers.
I went to University to study creative writing. At this point I had no idea what I wanted to do but the idea of ‘go to university and get a job’ was drilled into my mind all the way through school so that’s what I was doing. I had no interest in pretty much any subject at school so just went with what I was passionate about for my course and that was creative writing. I love creating and writing so it sounded perfect really.
However, I started questioning things when on the first day of my course, our tutor told the seminar “it is very unlikely that any of you will ever get published.” My first thought was, well, what is the point then? University is not something you just do for fun – it’s 3 dedicated years of your life plus a huge student loan. I also detest the whole learning environment. It comes as no surprise then that 3 months later I quit. This was not my future.
It was a combination of factors that lead up to this moment. Not only was education not working out for me, I often found myself daydreaming and coming up with new ideas. It suddenly hit me one day that the best way to peruse my own creativity was to set up my own business and I had just the business in mind.
My Struggle with Breakfast On-The-Go
Having limited time for breakfast is an issue I am familiar with. Whilst in school and at university, I always found myself having limited time in the mornings to get food and most of the time, I didn’t really feel like eating at all. The thought of too much food in the morning would make me queasy. As unhealthy as it sounds, I’d often settle with a small pain au chocolat or even a chocolate chip cookie to keep me going all morning. It sucked but I didn’t know what else to have that was both quick and tasty. Things reached an all-time low in Uni when I purchased a giant container of mini-croissants that would live in my Uni-room. Every morning I’d have one but after a while they started to go stale. But with only a few minutes till lectures started, I had to put up with it. Not only was it unpleasant, I doubt they were giving me much nutrition either.
Of course, there were products out there that claimed to solve the problem – meal replacement shakes. However, when I looked at the ingredients list I was horrified by the extensive list of chemicals which I didn’t understand. They were riddled with artificial sweeteners, thickeners, bulking agents, anti-caking agents and so on. I don’t know about you, but I am not keen on consuming a concoction of chemicals that I have no idea what are for. On the odd occasion where I did try one, I hated the taste. They tasted as chemically as they sounded. I decided I’d rather stick to stale croissants than have one of those every morning.
But then a thought came to me. Why should I put up with this? Plus, I highly doubted that I was the only person struggling to find something quick, edible and healthy in the morning. I’ve always been creative and so an idea started to form in my mind. Why not create a genuinely healthy brand that focuses on helping people who don’t have much time to eat? This was the business idea I quit University to pursue.
I didn’t know it back then but this was the very birth of Nutribuddy.