From Athlete to Entrepreneur With Laura Xiao of Henné Organics

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“Whether you want to or not, whether it’s positive or negative, all the big things in life, I have just not been able to predict any of them.”


Businesses are built by all kinds of people who bring all different strategies to the table. Laura Xiao’s journey started in the sports world and from there she grew into an entrepreneur who is now the Founder and CEO of Henné Organics. What did Laura take from her experience as an athlete to help her grow her brand? And how is she overcoming obstacles now? Find out on this episode.

Key Insights


Give It Time

Too often, entrepreneurs have an idea and they work on it for a brief period of time and then throw in the towel. Xiao never wanted to be that kind of person. Instead, she gave herself a two-year window to work on Henne and really understand the business and if it was viable. She decided she would ride all the highs and lows and at the end of two years, she’d know she had given it a fair shot.

What’s The Worst That Could Happen?

As an athlete, Xiao practiced mindful negative visualization, where she would go to all of the possible worst-case scenarios in her mind and try to think about what would happen if they came up. In doing this exercise, when challenges arose, she felt prepared for them. Xiao still uses this practice today as a business owner, and says that it is a useful tool to minimize fear and anxiety around your business. 

“You don’t have to let it take over you, but sometimes… if you’re really feeling anxious, [think], ‘Okay, what’s the worst thing that can happen. And what is this thing popping up in my head?’ You briefly visualize it and think, ‘Can I overcome this? Is it as horrible as I thought? Like, if this were to happen, how would I react?’ And if you realize that you actually can find a way to overcome it.”

About the Guest:

Laura Xiao is the Founder and CEO of Henné Organics. Founded in 2015, Henné’s vision was to introduce a splash of ecoluxury into the everyday. The company takes a modern and minimalistic approach that replaces standard lip care products with something extraordinary. Prior to Henné, Laura co-founded Stockholm Hardcode, which specializes in web development with an emphasis on customization

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Episode 216