Interview: Alyssa Meza
Can you start by telling readers a little about yourself?
My name is Alyssa, I was born and raised in Stockton, California by a single badass mom. Because of her, I learned how to be independent, how to fight for what I believe in and how to dream big. I have an amazing step dad who in my eyes is my real father. He taught me how to use a hammer, how to change an outlet and has given me such a great example of what a real father does for his children. I have an older sister, Brittany, who is so content with who she is that it always makes me a bit jealous. She's a fighter and overcomes every obstacle life throws her way. I also, I have a younger sister named Rylee. Ever since she was one year old I knew she had a heart of gold. Always putting others first and doing her best to make us laugh. She's the coolest 13- year-old around—much cooler than I ever was. You probably didn't need to know all of this about my family, but I need you to understand that without these people, Humble Pie [my bakery] wouldn't exist. (That goes for my two best friends and sweetest grandmas as well.)
My career really began with the time I spent at Invisible Children. I actually dropped out of college to accept an internship with them and it was the best decision I've ever made. I'm not saying drop out of college by any means, I'm just saying that I dropped out of college because I found a cause worth dedicating my life to. Fighting for children to stop being abducted and to come home meant more to me than a degree. After IC I moved to LA and began working at The Giving Keys. This was probably one of the greatest seasons of my life. Once again I found a cause worth fighting for and loved every second of it. Eventually I moved to Nashville and felt God telling me it was time to pursue a personal dream of mine: Enter Humble Pie Bakery.
Right now you are making a career for yourself running a small baked goods company, correct? Was it always your plan to open your own company?
I don't know if it was ever in my plan, but it was definitely always a dream. I think moving to Nashville and meeting so many kickass women entrepreneurs really gave my dream the push it needed to become reality. I knew I wanted to serve people. Whether it was in non-profit work or literally serving them baked goods, I just knew I wanted to make people happy.
What is something you’ve learned from your job?
Start-ups are no joke. You are literally the baker, social media manager, brand director, accountant, EVERYTHING. I'm also really cheap so I try not to outsource anything (ie. Website and logo design) so I taught myself how to do a lot. But I'm really happy I did because I feel like I'm growing in so many ways.
We are never really done growing up. What do you hope to do in the future?
I really hope to turn Humble Pie into a give back company. I'd love to be able to donate a portion of the proceeds to food banks. That's the ultimate dream. And maybe have a few locations. I Wouldn't mind going to Chicago or Seattle either.
If you could give your younger self a piece of advice what would it be?
Stop envying what everyone else has. I grew up surrounded by people with money or a "normal" family. It was really hard for me to be content. But trust me. Once you stop living to reach other people's potentials, yours is worth so much more.
What gets you out of bed in the morning?
The thought of being ordinary. I don't know when it happened, but knowing I have the opportunity everyday to live an extraordinary life makes me fight even harder.
Do you have advice for girls growing up today?
Be kind. I know it sounds like such an easy thing to do, but sometimes it really isn't. But everyone deserves to be treated with kindness and respect. After all, you have no idea what anyone has been through. Maybe your kindness is what they need to start their "Humble Pie."
Do you have any female figures that you look up to?
Every single woman in my life. Seriously. My grandmas, my mom, my sisters and my two best friends. Each of them has fought their own battles with such grace and dignity. I'm so impressed by all of them and really do aspire to be like each of them.
Why do you think it is important to tell our stories?
I think everyone is looking for inspiration or for that push to pursue their own dreams. Hearing another person's story can really change the game. It can turn dreams into reality but better than that, it can teach you so much about your life too.
What is something in life that you are most proud of?
Humble Pie is probably something I'm most proud of. I mean it's my baby. I'm really not sure where I'd be without it in this season of my life. It has helped me discover how capable I truly am and that the hard work is really worth it. Not to mention only getting three hours of sleep some nights. Either way, I wouldn't trade it for the world.
A few favorites:
Book: Daring Greatly by Brené Brown.
Band/Song/Music Genre: Oh this is a tough one. I really like the depressing stuff. The songs about love and how amazing yet tortured it is. I guess right now my go to artist is Daughter.
Quote: Stop. Breathe. And enjoy the moment.
What is your life motto?
God never gives you more than you can handle. So fight like it.