In today’s Q&A with a New Canaan business navigating the COVID-19 emergency, we hear from town resident Julie Pryor, founder of Pryority Wellness on Grove Street. Here’s our exchange.
New Canaanite: What has the past week been like for you and Pryority?
Julie Pryor: We are in a wait-and-see position. We are a wellness and preventative holistic care business; and although we were being diligent in taking all precautions necessary we made the decision to temporarily close Pryority on Sunday, March 15th. Our primary concern is the health and wellness of our clients, practitioners and community. Because of the nature of our business, we have always maintained strict cleaning procedures, from regular hand-washing, to sanitizing surfaces, to washing massage sheets in our own washer and dryer. Over the past few weeks, we had increased the frequency of our sanitary practices.
What changes are you seeing in customer/client behavior?
I think the reality of our situation is setting in, so it fluctuates between stress and anxiety to acceptance and seeing the silver lining in all of this. It’s an unnerving time for us all but now that we’re in it, can we make it a time to simplify, get real and grounded, focus on family and friends and neighbors? I think our clients and community are doing a great job of this.
How are you accommodating them differently, if at all?
We are continuing to offer tips and ideas for how to stay well and relaxed in mind, body and spirit on our social media platforms and also in our emails.Our Instagram and Facebook are @pryoritywellness. People can sign up for our newsletter on our website. Our partners at Grounded Meditation are offering Facebook Live Sound Bath meditation at 6:30 pm this evening. It’s a beautiful thing, so relaxing and soothing.
What are your thoughts for the near future? What is your concern level regarding your business’ ability to navigate this time?
We are keeping abreast of the situation. My practitioners and I are working toward planning for the future and learning together how to navigate the situation when our brick-and-mortar center is closed. We hope this is an opportunity for growth as a team and as individuals. Also, we’re concerned about our clients who rely on us for hands on healing as a part of their regular routines. This all happened so quickly; we’re learning together.
What’s your long-term view of this situation as a business owner?
Our clients, our community, our world—we’re experiencing something unprecedented. I’m concerned for people’s health—in terms of the virus, but also the stress and anxiety that come with it. Finding new ways to serve our client base is Pryority’s focus.
What is your message to clients?
We have not forgotten you and we will miss you! All of you are very much in our thoughts as we navigate this unique time separately, but together. Continue to follow us on social media and on our mailing list. Let’s all try to stay as positive as we can. We cannot wait to celebrate everyone’s health very soon—in person. Please consider buying gift cards from all your favorite local businesses, which can be used when this situation is behind us. (Ours can be found on our website.)