The Good Trade's Founder AmyAnn Cadwell

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In case you haven’t noticed, i love a good newsletter. (Ahem.)

So when I stumbled upon The Good Trade, a bite-sized daily newsletter with curated conscious content, I was gleeful. The gorgeous email hit my inbox every morning, and I was struck by the thoughtful, stylish content that still felt weighty — these weren’t just typical puff pieces on eye-roll worthy topics like, “Six Floral Dresses For Spring That Won’t Break The Bank.” No, The Good Trade was full of dimensionality: some fashion, a little wellness, some conscious entrepreneur content, and even some beauty stories.

Of course, The Good Trade’s well-rounded brand, voice, and vision stems directly from it’s founder, AmyAnn Cadwell. Cadwell founded The Good Trade as a side-hustle, and it blossomed so quickly that it’s become a full-time job with a full staff. Yes, she’s a savvy entrepreneur, but I also admire Cadwell because she clearly has her priorities straight. It’s so challenging to be a boss, a CEO, and the founder of a company at the same time — especially if you’ve never done it before. The overwhelm effect is real, and it’s easy to lose the forest for the trees and forget what’s really important in life. (Hey, here to tell you that it’s definitely not KPIs or click-through rates. Just saying.)

AmyAnn has not only managed to gracefully step into the role of female founder, but has also taken it upon herself to support other founders as an angel investor. It kinda feels like we’ve got the next conscious Gwyneth Paltrow on our hands, ya know? Keep scrolling to learn more about AmyAnn, her journey to entrepreneurship, and how we can be more conscious in every aspect of our lives.


about Amyann

First, the basics: Sun, Moon, and Rising sign?

Sun: Taurus
Moon: Virgo
Rising : Gemini

Enneagram?

Type 3 “The Achiever”, Wing Type 2 “The Helper”

What did you want to be when you were a little kid?

A Supreme Court justice or Olympic swimmer.

As a child, what were you really good at? How does that fit into your life now?

The first of four children, I was a bit of a natural leader. As a young girl, I was self-assured, competent, energetic and warm-hearted. Life is full of setbacks and heartaches, but I try to nurture a childlike openness to possibility.

What would 10-year-old AmyAnn think of 2019 AmyAnn?

LIttle-me would be pretty thrilled to hear I live in California and have TWO dogs. 😉


on being a female founder of a conscious company

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You started The Good Trade to provide a resource for women to become more conscious consumers. It's brilliant because so often shopping sustainably really becomes a luxury that only people with the time to research conscious companies and the money to pay a little more for sustainable goods can engage in. Can you tell us more about why accessibility is so important to what you do at The Good Trade?

Accessibility and inclusivity are the only way a movement towards sustainability will gain the necessary traction for widespread change. We are constantly looking for ways to bring more people into the conversation.

What was the real tipping point moment that made you realize you needed to go all-in on The Good Trade?

There were a few tipping points that converged at one time—but most compelling to me was the level of interest from our audience to learn more about living mindfully. We reached a place where the conversation demanded my full attention and the work of a talented team.

One of the toughest parts of running a business isn't the actual work — it's hiring and leading a team. How have you stepped into that role in the last few years as The Good Trade has grown?

Growing a team has been one of the most natural and rewarding aspects of The Good Trade’s evolution. I’ve learned quickly that every person needs a different management style, so I have hired at a pace I feel comfortable growing alongside. I respect the time and attention it takes to build lasting relationships with each member of our team and cherish the diversity of personalities and strengths represented.

You're a sustainability expert, a female founder, and an angel investor. I'm guessing that you think a lot about the type of legacy you want to leave behind. What does legacy mean to you? Do you think about it every day?

Personally, I get a bit tripped up thinking about long-term legacy. I prefer to measure myself more concretely by years, months, days and moments. I am constantly asking myself, can I create something beautiful today? I make it my intention to create something meaningful for myself, my family, my team, our readers, our clients, or other female leaders and business owners in whatever small or large ways I can.

In the same vein, sometimes being a renegade can feel isolating. You're fighting so hard for change — for the environment, for female founders, for dreamers — that it's natural to question whether one person's actions can make a difference. Do you ever question the impact of your work, and what do you do to reframe your thinking when you find yourself in doubt?

As entrepreneurs, we need trusted friends and colleagues to take some of the pressure and share in the excitement of building a young company, especially a purpose-driven one. I continually feel the need for support and believe wholeheartedly that no leader should ever journey alone.


well-being and self-care

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How does it feel when you know you're doing too much? What do you do to get yourself back into alignment?

I have very specific physical symptoms that I watch closely as indicators of my overall wellbeing. I also pay careful attention to mental and emotional factors, like racing thoughts, fatigue, worry, and overwhelm. When I notice I feel unbalanced, I immediately create room in my schedule to sleep, to read (fiction, for me!) and practice yoga or get outside.

I’ve also found that I need to do the same for grief, which shows up in my life at such wildly unexpected and inconvenient times. But when griefs demand my attention, I make time for it with tenderness and sincerity.

What's the best part of your day?

Sitting down for dinner with my husband is a wonderful moment of my day. We like to cook together in the evenings, and although we often talk about our work over dinner, we are always screen-free and it’s the only time of my day that I cannot be reached. It’s a really peaceful and cherished time for me.

A huge aspect of promoting conscious consumerism is cultivating mindfulness. Which mindfulness tools or practices do you rely on?

I start each day with 5 minutes of yoga, 5 minutes of gratitude journaling and 5 minutes of snuggling with my pups. It is a super simple routine, but it really helps me to feel grounded into a new day.

And admittedly, sometimes we can even go a little ham on mindfulness! When do you catch yourself overthinking?

In yoga, ha! The achiever in me is always trying to push my practice to the next level, yet what I really need is the permission to be at rest with myself, just as I am, in any given moment.


accessibility and transparency in all things

Like sustainability, wellness is often something that's reserved for a certain privileged part of the population. How could we make wellness more accessible to more people?

The co-opting of the wellness movement by commercial interests infuriates me. I may be in the minority, but literally never once has spending money on expensive beauty or wellness treatments made me feel like a whole person. These messages are just another way to make women feel inadequate.

Wellness is accessible to all of us because it begins with wholeness of spirit. Wonderful relationships, a dynamic spiritual life, purpose; these are the things that lead to true wellness and wholeness in our lives.

A tenant of conscious consumerism is transparency — it's so important to know what brands stand for. How does transparency translate into the business of The Good Trade?

Transparency is meaningful when a company has strong, resilient values that can be clearly demonstrated through that company’s work or product. Perhaps our most cherished value at The Good Trade is a deep love and commitment to our reader, we are constantly asking how we can better serve her with inspiring content and it informs everything we do.

Where do you wish there was more transparency in the conscious consumerism space? In the wellness space?

I am most impressed by companies that share their values publicly and back those values with transparent reporting. For larger corporations, it is important to me to know their C-suite compensation, tax rate and commitments to gender equality and diversity. I am constantly searching for brands that not only do good—but are good.

What advice would you give yourself five years ago?

Trust your instincts, be kind to yourself, and lean into the things you love.

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