7 March 2021|Latest Posts, Meet the Successful Founder
I grew up in the Middle East until I was 12; before attending boarding school in Ireland. Following this I studied Psychology and delved further into this field with an MSc in Organisational and Social Psychology in London. Just as I was starting my Masters I had a really inspiring trip to L.A. and also what followed shortly after was a health-scare that ultimately led to me starting L.A. PACIFIC (as I wanted white teeth but no longer was willing to sacrifice my oral health which is connected to our overall health). After a short stint as a lettings agent I joined Deloitte’s consulting graduate programme entering the fast-paced world of technology, strategy and innovation.
Through a number of different experiences, I was led to become a yoga teacher and I did a 6-month secondment with a disruptive fintech start-up. This was my last job before founding L.A. PACIFIC.
What would you love to share to encourage other women to start their own business?
Entrepreneurship has made my face every niggling crumb of self-doubt in my body. If I didn’t have experiences that called on me to use my intuition to then I wouldn’t have this relationship with self-trust that I do now. I think the power of female intuition is infinite…when we trust it! It’s also taught me how little in control I am; I had to realise that actually there were so many things that brought me exactly to where I am now that actually while I’m participating, I’m not the only thing at play here. I see creativity as when you have so much love for something that it manifests into something physical. When I am working on L.A. PACIFC, I have a guiding vision and practice my work as an act of love… Like I am pouring love into what I do.
Entrepreneurship brings so many experiences that can bring you to your knees but also to heights that I never could have dreamed of and trickles into all areas of life. For anyone thinking about stepping into this world get ready to embrace the unknown – the ultimate symbol for the archetype of the feminine. When it’s in flow (and you’ll feel that) take the leap and get ready to learn the depths of yourself.
What are your top tips for entrepreneurial success?
1Redefine your definition of failure. I mean that literally, write down your definition of failure and then what experiences you believe led you to that belief. When I did this I realised that failure led me to my greatest learnings that guided me to my next step with a deeper understanding of myself.
Remember that your value is not connected to what you do or don’t do; what’s “successful” or “unsuccessful” it’s connected to you simply being alive. This understanding is what gives me the space to be creative to make mistakes and more importantly to offer myself rest.
Next up REST. We are in a paradigm that rewards prioritising work over self-care when actually our bodies are inherently designed to need rest. The best clear example of this is with exercise where it’s proven that overtraining and not taking rest days leaves your body fatigued and can cause muscle loss.
Engage with the unfamiliar. Remove tunnel vision, laser focus and open yourself to expansion. In my career, I have taken singing lessons, attended public speaking group “Toast Masters”, salsa dancing and became a yoga teacher. Creativity can come from joining seemingly disparate things. Did you know Kelis Rogers is also a chef.
Ask for help! Our minds might lead us to think we have to do everything by ourselves and that asking for help is weakness…As soon as I dropped this false belief I realised that “Oh actually someone in the history of life has already gone through this”, I can learn from others experiences and I’m not alone.
Who are the 5 women who inspire you the most?
My Mum– the first entrepreneur I met and single-mother to my three siblings and I. She trained as a nurse and became an entrepreneur shortly a couple of years after she had my older brother. She realised that there was no nursery that met her expectations for what she wanted for her child and decided to setup her own!
Maya Angelou – her first job was as a streetcar conductor in San Francisco…she then ventured into singing, dancing, acting, composing, directing (Hollywood’s first female black director), but became most famous as a writer, editor, essayist, playwright, and poet. What you’re doing now doesn’t define what you will be doing.
Marcia Kilgore – serial entrepreneur you might know her creations such as Bliss Spa, which she sold to LVMH in 1999, and other startups such as Soap & Glory, FitFlop, Soaper Duper and most recently Beauty Pie. She taught me that entrepreneurship isn’t one defining moment you can do it again, and again and again.
Arlan Hamilton – in 2014 only 6% of partners in VC firms were women (Source: Babson College’s Diana Report). This didn’t stop Arlan from founding Backstage Capital, a venture capital firm that exclusively invests in companies founded by women, people of colour and LGBTQ entrepreneur.
Princess: A True Story of Life Behind the Veil in Saudi Arabia – I’m not sure what her real name is as I learned about her through a book she wrote with her confidante. A princess with a story that taught me that my freedom cannot be taken for granted and highlighted where I was keeping myself a prisoner through my own mind.
What is your favourite saying/inspirational quote?
Brene Brown – “Wholehearted living is about engaging in our lives from a place of worthiness. It means cultivating the courage, compassion, and connection to wake up in the morning and think, No matter what gets done and how much is left undone, I am enough.”
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