Entrepreneurship, kindness and positive vibes.
This week Thread Tales is in conversation with Meme Naij, Montessori teacher, positivity activist and female entrepreneur.
Meme wears our Hand Woven Selvedge Stripe Wrap - Camel
The Thread Tales community is made up of a diverse group of incredibly inspiring women, be them customers, friends, partners or family. If we were conscious of that before, working on our recent Artemisia project with the National Gallery (page 36 of our Thread Tales Magazine, Issue 1) has made us even more aware of how strong, empowered and inspiring the women around us are.
One of them is Meme, customer and friend, early year Montessori teacher, positivity activist and female entrepreneur. We see so much of Artemisia’s strong will and confidence in her.
In the interview below we share some of Meme’s contagious positivity and self-belief.
What's the biggest challenge you have faced/still face as a female entrepreneur?
The biggest challenge has got to be negativity from fellow female entrepreneurs. Because I am such a girls’ girl, I am constantly rooting for other women, so when I experience negativity from a female or hear about someone close to me experiencing any form of negativity from a female, it hurts my heart. I wish women could all just get along, support each other and understand the power we have in togetherness, but it is not so. I am still hopeful and to be fair, women are celebrating each other a lot more these days than they did in the past so there is hope.
How do you face obstacles and remain resilient when things get hard?
I am naturally an optimistic and positive person, but I am also very spiritual, so when things get hard, I go back to the drawing board. I call it a “reset”.
I go off social media, take a break from the business of life. I pray and meditate. When I do this, I come out energised, inspired, with new perspective and a positive attitude.
Do you have a female community you can rely on? If so, what difference did/does it make in your journey?
I have 5 very close friends who are my go-to people. They know everything that goes on in my life. They help me stay humble, motivated and keep me accountable. I also have amazing family and friends that I trust and can go to for different things. They are honest, they believe in me and want the best for me. I owe a lot to these amazing women in my life. When you have good people around you, life is easier.
What's the best piece of advice you have ever received?
To “do it afraid”. When I have an idea or a plan that terrifies me, I remember this advice and I do it no matter how afraid I am. After it's done, doing the next terrifying thing becomes much easier. I always wonder why I was so scared in the first place.
What advice would you give other inspiring female entrepreneurs?
To do it afraid.
When you think about your experience, what are you grateful for?
For my amazing female community. I couldn’t go this journey without them.
Tell us about a woman who inspires you? Who is she and why?
My mum. She inspired me in the way that she remains calm even when it seems like the world is ending. I admire that about her. She is always calm. I have actually never ever seen her panic. Her calmness helps me stay calm so when I am freaking out, I call her.
You mention kindness and being a positive source of energy on your channels. What does it mean to you? How did you come to this realisation about yourself? How does it translate in your daily life, from your social circles to your job to your personal life?
I have always been an extra nice person. I like to see people happy. I live to encourage people, to put a smile on their face. As long as they are happy, I am happy. When I was younger, I thought everyone was like that, but I quickly realised that not everyone is happy-go-lucky and, if anything, my happiness was a problem for them. I have tried to tone it down for the people who can’t stand me, but these days I am learning to be myself and love me the way I am. So, I just live my life realising that not everyone will like me and that’s ok. Being nice doesn’t mean being liked. Just be yourself and those who are for you will be for you and those who dislike you, will keep their distance and that’s ok too.
Choose a Thread Tales piece for these women: a) yourself, b) your muse, c) a fellow female entrepreneur. who needs a confidence boost and tell us why you chose that.
The Thread Tales piece I would choose for myself will be the white jumper dress I wore in the photoshoot - It is so my style. I'd pair it with some brown boots and I’m good to go.
We are feeling energised and bubbling with confidence after our chat with Meme, and we hope you are feeling the benefits of her radiant positivity.
Do you have someone who inspires you? Tell us about her and what piece you would choose for her, for a chance to be featured on our social media channels!