“I thought I would never work again”

Kim Palmer, the app creator with a background in consumer marketing, took what she learned from hypnotherapy to create a brand that helps women.

The idea for the Clementine app came to Kim Palmer while she was working in a stressful corporate environment. She started having panic attacks and, after discovering hypnotherapy, decided to build an app that would help other women who suffer with anxiety and low selfesteem. It now reaches over 60,000 women and is gearing up for expansion.

I’ve spent my career working in consumer marketing roles for mostly big brands. Some of these environments have been a little aggressive and male-centric, and the roles were quite stressful. I found that I could never work at work and, even when I did, I would bang on about it all weekend and evening. I was a very ambitious workaholic.

About five years ago, I had a bit of a breakdown. I was pregnant and had developed unhealthy behaviours – working like crazy and not drinking or eating properly. I went to a meeting where I was to do a presentation. Normally, this wouldn’t faze me, but I started feeling nervous and my heart was racing. I knew something was wrong, because I got verbal diarrhoea. Luckily, one of my colleagues got me out of there.

That experience traumatised me and I started to pull back from presenting. Of course, the more you avoid something, the worse it gets. I tried to sweep it under the carpet, but then I began to develop social anxiety and panic attacks. Eventually, my maternity leave started and I was able to escape that environment. I honestly thought I would never work again.

To get myself back to work, I started doing hypnotherapy and felt a little better. However, my employer sold the business while I was on maternity leave, so I found a new job… and had a panic attack in front of my new CEO in my second week.

She was amazing about it and incredibly supportive. She made working in that environment a safe place for me, and I slowly got myself back and began ‘unwinding’ those negative behaviours. At the same time, I started working with a life coach and realised that I didn’t want to be climbing the corporate ladder. What I really wanted was to run my own business.

I decided to immerse myself in the problems that I had the skills to potentially solve. At the same time, I was listening to therapy on my phone and found this incredibly helpful. I started to talk to other women, and it seemed they all had the same issues around low self-esteem and stress, and feeling like they just weren’t winning at life.

I wanted to provide pocket cognitive hypnotherapy via an app with a community to back it up. The goal would be to help women sleep better, feel more confident, stress less and accept their bodies. The concept for Clementine was born.

I decided to keep my ‘day job’ – in fact, I’m still there – and work every night on the business. The app took around six months to build and one of my colleagues joined me as a partner on this journey. She now owns 15% of the business.

Almost two years later, over 97% of the tens of thousands of women who use the app engage with it every day. We have a loyal community, a 4.7 app-store rating and a strong vision of where we want to be. There are 76 million women in the UK and USA who are in our target range, and we know almost all of them are affected in some way. We want to help them and build a brand they care about.

This interview was carried out by SIM7’s Simeon de la Torre and first appeared in easyJet Traveller magazine. To read the latest issue (and the entire back catalogue of magazines), visit: https://ink-global.com/our-clients/portfolio/easyjet-traveller/