Mary Lou Kweselait comes from a family of entrepreneurs, so it’s no surprise that she’s making a living by being her own boss. Mary Lou currently works with an energy company to help businesses lower their electric expenses. A Jersey native, Mary Lou was in her early 20s when she embarked on her first business venture.
“My first business was when I lived in Florida back in the early 80s,” said Mary Lou. “I bought a hot dog cart and successfully had this business for about two years before moving back to New Jersey.”
Mary Lou has owned several other businesses, some with partners and others on her own. She has been involved in sales most of her life. She spent the first half of her business career in the restaurant industry, which is where Mary Lou’s heart is. More recently, she spent 10 years in the advertising industry. Mary Lou has a plethora of business experience under her belt and shows no signs of slowing down. As exciting and diverse a journey this has been thus far, there have also been some challenges as she seeks to find her passion.
“There are certainly challenges involved with owning your own business. It has been tough for me, and more difficult when working with a partner,” said Mary Lou. “The sales end of things has always affected me emotionally. I seem to feel great when I’m making sales and down when sales are low. Not the best way to live life. I’m working on it.”
Mary Lou’s rewards come from having the independence to create her own schedule and work as hard as she chooses. She likes that she is able to support herself. She also says her motivation comes from her desire to help others, and is inspired by watching businesses grow.
It’s important to Mary Lou to take care of herself physically, mentally, emotionally, and spiritually in order to find balance in her life. Like many others, Mary Lou does fear she won’t ever work at her passion—it’s a continuous pursuit for her.
1. What have you accepted in your life that took time?
I’ve accepted that I chose to be a single parent. It was difficult, but I’m glad to have made that decision. Being a parent is the most difficult thing I have done in my life and the most rewarding. I’ve also accepted the fact that I’m human and make mistakes often.
2. What do you appreciate the most in your life?
I appreciate that I have a God who takes care of me each and every day. I know that all my needs are taken care of; maybe not always my wants, but I am always OK.
3. What is one of your most rewarding achievements in life?
Owning two homes as a single woman, and many times working in a typically male industry.
4. What is your not-so-perfect way?
I tend to be very hard on myself. I need to work at being gentle to me every single day. I like things to be perfect but have had to accept my humanness.
5. How would you complete the phrase “I Love My…”?
I Love My…daughter, my family, Scion XB, my home, my community, my ability to network well, my body, and my life!
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