Yesterday marked my mother’s birthday. Though she passed away a few years ago, her influence on my life and business remains profound. She never had the chance to meet my daughter, who is now almost three months old. This thought makes her absence more touching.

My mother was one of the hardest working people I’ve ever known. She juggled three jobs while managing her own small business. This relentless work ethic was her way of providing for us. Being an only child, I often wished for more time with her, but our relationship was complicated. We rarely had moments to enjoy each other’s company.

Despite the challenges, my mother imparted invaluable lessons that shaped my business approach. Here are a few key lessons I learned from her:

Relentless Work Ethic

My mother taught me the importance of hard work. Watching her manage multiple jobs showed me that dedication and perseverance are essential for success. In my business, I apply this lesson by being committed and persistent, even when faced with obstacles.

Entrepreneurial Spirit

Alongside her jobs, my mother ran her own small ventures. This entrepreneurial spirit inspired me to pursue my business dreams. She showed me that creating something valuable from scratch with passion and effort is possible.


My mother was incredibly resourceful, making the most out of what little we had. This taught me to be creative and innovative in problem-solving. In business, this means finding solutions even when resources are limited.

Balance and Sacrifice

While my mother’s dedication was admirable, it also highlighted the need for balance. I strive to achieve a better work-life balance to ensure I have time for my family, especially my daughter. This balance allows me to be present for the important moments my mother and I often missed.


Life was not easy for my mother, but she never gave up. Her resilience in adversity has been a cornerstone of my business philosophy. I learned to view setbacks as opportunities to grow and improve.

My mother was also a smoker, and her addiction brought severe consequences. She battled cancer and living on the other side of the world; I couldn’t say goodbye to her. When I finally arrived to see her, she was already in a coma. This devastating experience underscored the importance of being present and cherishing every moment with loved ones.

These lessons from my mother have been the foundation of my business practices. Her legacy lives on through the principles she instilled in me, guiding me as I navigate the complexities of entrepreneurship.

As I reflect on her birthday and the impact she had on my life, I am filled with gratitude. Her teachings not only shaped my business but also influenced how I aim to raise my daughter. I hope to pass on these lessons, ensuring that my mother’s spirit and wisdom continue to inspire future generations.

In memory of my mother, I strive to honour her through my work, living by the values she embodied and instilled in me.

What lessons have you learned from your loved ones that have shaped your personal or professional life?


Rodrigo Branco Matsumoto.

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