zero to ten with erin waters

The Covid-19 pandemic left very few small businesses untouched, and Erin Waters’ business Ice Bodyworks was no exception. Ice Bodyworks is a petite bodywork studio. Basically, Erin does deep level massage for those with chronic pain or injuries as well as offers other types of services like cupping, crystal healing and more.

And this means her job relies a lot on touch – something that’s been a big no throughout the pandemic, especially in the early days.

Her business wasn’t considered essential during the statewide shutdown last summer, which means she went months without being able to work. She and her husband rented and lived part-time in Charlotte, which no longer became feasible. They moved full time to Murrells Inlet in South Carolina and played the waiting game so many small business owners experienced last year.

When things started to open up again, things were far from business as usual for Erin. She had to commute 4 hours to Charlotte in order to help her clients out of her studio space at hygge FIT, then rent a hotel room for 2-3 days. She had to reduce the number of clients she could take on since she wasn’t in Charlotte as frequently and because she had to factor in more time between clients to fully sanitize her studio.

She was frustrated. As a business owner she was struggling to make ends meet, to work with her clients and keep herself and her family safe. And through it all, she was seeing people she knew, loved and respected not take the virus seriously.

“I had to fire a lot of clients that had been clients for a long time that refused to take covid seriously,” she says. “I was at a point where, one, I owed it to my other clients, but two, I could give a fuck about a friendsgiving or your friendsgiving pictures when I live in a different state and I drive 4 hours to work.”

For our latest Zero to Ten episode, we sat down with Erin to talk about how she was able to survive as a small business through it all and hear her thoughts on the current state of the pandemic in North Carolina.

“If the only thing that changed in your life is the address of your keyboard at work, I need you to be quiet,” she says. “I just need you to be quiet or away from me. Because I get it. I saw you guys having your parties in South End. I saw you getting your paychecks. I saw all of it. And I need you to shut up. Stop telling other people what they need to do. Because we are doing the best that we can.”

Erin’s not one to mince words, and for that we love her. Listen to the full episode above or search for Zero to Ten wherever you like to listen to your podcasts.

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