From her first job at age 14 to owning a business at age 40, Lorena Orahood has a family-oriented view of financial success
As Lola member, Lorena Orahood has continued her journey in life, she has learned so much about the importance of saving and investing for the future while cherishing times with loved ones in the present. After moving to the United States from Brazil in 2000, she has successfully started a business in an industry she loves: beauty. When she’s not at work, you can find Lorena with friends and family for a nice gathering or outdoors.
Location: Marietta, GA
Age: 40 years
What I do: Co-owner of Art of Wax
Briefly describe who you are, what you do for work and for fun
My name is Lorena. I’m originally from Goiania, Brazil and moved to the United States (Marietta,GA) in the year 2000. Like many other immigrants, I came to this country for better opportunities. I have been married for 15 years to my husband Dave, and I am the mother of a 6-year-old girl, Emilia. I run a small business in Atlanta. I am the co-owner of Art of Wax with my business partner Waleska. I’m also hands-on with our clientele. I’m passionate about my career. I enjoy interacting with people, hearing their stories and building relationships with clients. When I’m not at work, I really enjoy our family time. I’m always looking for fun activities, hiking, biking, traveling, etc. I love to get together with family and friends.
How did you land upon your professional path? Who or what inspired you into taking this path?
I always had a passion for the beauty industry and I thought about using my skills and taking them to a professional level. My husband Dave was very supportive of me. I enrolled in an Esthetician school to get my license and started to work right away. After working for a small shop in the Highlands, I had an opportunity to start my own business.
What do you do (for work or fun) to align with your values?
Family values are very important to me. We have a small group of coworkers that I also consider my “work family”. When I’m not at work, I really enjoy our family time. I’m always looking for fun activities, hiking, biking, traveling, etc. I love to get together with family and friends.
How do you define success for yourself? What ideas of success do you reject?
Success for me is being able to look around and see my accomplishments. From having the courage to come to this country where I couldn’t speak the language, to now having built a solid financial foundation and overall life for myself and my family. Having lots of money doesn’t mean you are going to be happy and successful.
What is your relationship with money? How does money make you feel?
I’m very thankful for having the opportunity to get to where I am today. Of course, money is necessary to be comfortable and has definitely allowed me to afford things in life that I enjoy; However, money is not everything… I always try to balance work and home life. I want to be able to enjoy my time with the ones I love.
What lessons were you taught about money growing up (saving, investing, debt, earning, etc.)?
Growing up in Brazil, my parents always worked hard but never made enough money for our family to be in a comfortable position. They did the best they could. I started working at the young age of 14 to afford basic things like clothing, food, etc. and so did my siblings. We always helped out at home. I learned from my mom to always save if you can (even though we didn’t have much). While we always worked hard, the opportunities just weren’t there in my home country. I didn’t learn much about investing, all I knew was to work hard and “save if I can.”
How have you overcome any early beliefs or patterns around money?
I see that making money at a “job” is different than actually wanting a career and a better life.
How does money play into how you make big decisions about your life and career?
I always want to consider the family’s future, such as our retirement plans, and investing for our child’s future. The future is always more important than the now – however, it’s also important to have fun, I just make sure I always try to make responsible choices.
Do you approach money in your business and your personal finances in the same or different ways?
Mainly, I think the same way. I’m conservative with money from both a professional and personal aspect. If I’m having to make any money decisions with my business, I always take into consideration how it will affect both my business and personal finances in the long run.
Is there anything else you’d like to share that may give us a better understanding of your personal money story?
Not to be cliche, but I have to say that we all write our own stories. It might take a while to achieve what you want in life but nothing is impossible. It is never too late to learn anything you want to learn.