Tag Archives: business woman

Ambitious Women; Let’s hear from Jackie

18 Jul

Name | Jackie Taiwo

Tell us a random fact about yourself | I taught myself to play the piano when I was 12 and was pretty good for a few years, but I haven’t touched a piano in over a decade now.

What is your current occupation? | I work full time building my new business, Melariche (www.melariche.com), an online makeup & skincare catering to women of colour. On any given day, I may be working on web design, marketing & sales strategy, brand curation, operations management, social media…the list goes on and on. We launch in August, so everything is super busy, but it’s so fulfilling to work on a project that you’re passionate about and believe in.


Would you class yourself as an ambitious woman?| Most definitely. I’m always in pursuit of a goal I’ve set for myself whether that be in my personal life or career related. What’s interesting though is how I have been able to jump onto new opportunities without looking back. I studied engineering college, but decided to work in corporate finance after graduation. After working a few years, I then decided to pursue a joint law-business graduate degree (thinking I would move into business role within the entertainment industry), and by second year of grad school decided I just had to leave the country and was hired by an international law-firm willing to relocate me after graduation. I was able to transition at each stage because I did not believe my path was limited by my current experience at that time. And I think having ambition is being able to see a vision for yourself beyond what society or your environment says you should do.

Have you always been ambitious? If not what was the turning point for you? | I think my ambition was engrained in me early by mother, who passed away in 2002. My mother was born in the deep south in the height of Jim Crow (quite literally born on the land her grandparents were enslaved on), but she was not someone who let her circumstance limit her vision. At 19, single and pregnant, she moved to the New York by herself to give her family more opportunity. She worked hard, got married and was able to buy a home with ten years. Fast forward to 1981, five kids later, a single mother now, she decided to get her bachelor’s in nursing while pregnant with me and graduated with a degree from one of the best nursing programs in New York. I watched her step up in the community whenever it was needed. Our local HeadStart program needed a bus driver to take local kids (including myself) to the school. With six kids, a full-time job, she made to time to volunteer to drive that bus. I can name countless instances where she was first in line to help those in need. Like so many black women, she all did this without seeking recognition and was not incredibly vocal about her achievements. I doubt she would have even called herself ‘ambitious.’ She did what she thought was necessary to provide for herself, her family and her community. But her ability to see & create opportunity has had a big impact on me. She did not let her struggles define her and that’s a powerful mindset. In my toughest times, I think this type of ambition has been so powerful in motivating me to push on.

Jackie 2.jpg

What is your biggest achievement to date? | My 4-year-old daughter has to be my biggest achievement. She’s beautiful, super smart and headstrong. Outside of that, I would say quitting my job as a corporate lawyer after 5 years. Yes, quitting was a huge achievement for me. I was so unhappy and not living in my purpose but I was incredibly afraid to quit. Overcoming that fear was huge feat and I’m so proud that I was able to do it. Fear can really cloud your ambition, so letting that go was a major step for me and has allowed me to progress to where I am today – one month away from launching Melariche!

What is your long term vision for yourself? | My vision is massive. I want to grow Melariche into a ‘Sephora for women of colour’ and really shake up the beauty industry which has ignored women with darker skin for far too long. I want to eventually build Melariche stores all around world. Our tagline is ‘Celebrate Your Beauty’ because our brand represents beauty in all colours and sizes. Women are constantly told that they need to a look a certain way in order to be beautiful or to be successful. I want to challenge that notion by encouraging women to look however they want, wear whatever makeup they want, do their hair however they want, and that’s okay and beautiful because it’s YOU and you have been and will always be enough. Live life on your own terms and break the mould!

It’s also incredibly important to give back and I’d like to start a program that empowers vulnerable women to see possibility beyond their immediate struggle and pass on the mindset that my mother gave to me.

What have you sacrificed or willing to sacrifice to achieve your vision? | I’ve given up a lot of my time. I work on Melariche in every free moment because there is always something to do. The to-do list never ends. This unfortunately means I struggle to be present when I’m with my daughter and husband, and at times I’m afraid I won’t feel the effects of this until years later. But my husband is incredibly supportive and every day I block out time that is just for me and my daughter (working on putting the phone down!).

What advice can you give to other ambitious women that want to pursue their dreams but are afraid to do so? | Optimism. Remove the word “can’t” from your vocabulary. The power of being positive cannot be understated. Talk about your vision confidently – even if you don’t have the resources – focus on what you can accomplish and make a growth plan and believe in it.

Also, I think it’s important to pause and set aside a few days to literally write down your 3-year or 5-year plan, whether it’s for your business or career.  Write down what you want to achieve and be as detailed as possible about how you’re going to achieve it – force yourself to be realistic, take note on your strengths and include a plan to work on your weaknesses. Have someone you trust read it and to help determine if the plan you’ve set out will actually get you the results you seek. Also, write down contingencies for each stage, knowing that even if you execute your plan perfectly, sh*t happens beyond your control requiring you to pivot. But when that time comes you’ll be prepared because you know there’s a plan B.


Want to hear more from Jackie?

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Website: www.melariche.com


Are you ambitious? business minded? or pursuing  your passion?

Want to be apart of this series? Express your interest by emailing quietlyambitious@hotmail.com or messaging here  



My reality of failing

18 May

If you’re a fan of motivational speakers such as Tony Robins and Les Brown you’ll be familiar with their mantra on the importance of failing. These speakers amongst many others always stress that to be successful you must fail; because failure is a way to learn. I’ve heard it many times and I thought I believed it, I really did…but I soon realised I was lieing to myself.

Let’s talk honestly about failing. It’s a horrible feeling. Possibly one of the worst. It can create insecurity and doubt in the mind. It can make you question your actions and stop you from pursuing your dreams in an instant.The subtle reminder of past failures can become quite tormenting. It suggests to you each time that you’re inadequate, you’re the reason why you haven’t made it and you’re ultimately the FAILURE. But for those that are ambitious you need to accept that failure is inevitable! It’s something you HAVE to deal with. Working towards your goals means a lot of trials and errors along the way! But your drive and determination is what will keep you going despite the guarantee of failure.

Personally, I don’t fail well. I’ve grown up with a ‘little miss perfect’ complex. I never really stepped foot out of line at school and I minimised risks wherever possible throughout life. I thought that staying within my comfort zone meant that I would avoid failure. I went through school doing minimal work and came out with OK grades. Setting my standards low was a way to protect myself…because if I ever did fail I could justify it with the fact that I didn’t try my hardest so it didn’t matter.

But this post has come about because I recently experienced a few obstacles, setbacks and barriers. I still don’t like to fail and even though I push myself each day I’ll be honest, the thought of failing haunts me each time.

I’m currently building a business in financial education and along the way I’ve hit a few hurdles, barriers and road blocks! (to say the least) which has discouraged me on so many levels. Paperwork and admin are an essential part of every business and it must be done correctly to ensure accuracy. I was met with a task where I had to complete some paperwork in a short space of time. I wasn’t completely familiar with the processes and I felt a bit overwhelmed about having to complete it quickly. I got it wrong; a few times and I made errors. I wanted to quit. I contemplated giving up and justifying to myself that this business venture wasn’t for me. But I could see a trend and I told myself I can’t give up this time round. So I stuck at it and completed the paperwork. I put in 100%!

So it’s important that if when you fail you realise that it’s all apart of the process. If the journey to the top was easy…a lot more people would be up there. So remember to keep your mental state in check. Be honest with yourself. Give 100% and don’t make excuses! If you’re met with failure, acknowledge it and keep it moving!

[As always, I write these posts as motivation to myself. I’m still learning. I’m still developing but hopefully along my journey I can help you all too!]

How do you cope with failure? Leave a comment below or drop me an email

“Let your dreams guide you”

Nat x

Ambitious women; Let’s hear from Annika

16 Nov

Name| Annika Spalding

Tell us a random fact about yourself| I’m an outgoing introvert. So, at first glance you’ll assume I’m shy and timid, but within a few minutes of talking to me it will be quite the opposite.

What is your current occupation? | Mother, writer and university student.

Would you class yourself as an ambitious woman? | YES!

Have you always been ambitious? If not what was the turning point for you? | I have always had ambitions, I can remember being really young and having big dreams like going to university, teaching and being a best-selling author. I have an optimistic outlook and love to try new things, but there was a point in my life where I was ruled by anxiety and low self-esteem. It didn’t completely stop me because I still achieved what I wanted to, but it certainly hindered me. A turning point for me was a couple of years after my mom had died and a job in the paper caught my eye. I was 20 and had worked my way up to being a manager in a bookies, but this job in a women’s organisation was one I had always wanted to do. Domestic violence was an area of interest and even though I didn’t have the employment experience for the role, I decided to go for it anyway. I started on my 21st birthday.

Another turning point was a little over two years ago, in the first year of singlehood and I was still consumed by anxiety and low self-worth. I decided to go to a spoken word event that I had seen on Facebook, something I’d never been to but was intrigued by. That one night changed everything. Being in the company of creative people was inspiring, and I began to take my writing even more seriously than I had before. After attending that event in July 2013, I opened up an incomplete word document that I’d been working on for some time and that month I finished my first book. After that, everything changed.

What is your biggest achievement to date? | This is a hard one, really. I measure my success by the quality of people and experiences I have in my life. I’m a mother so anything and everything to do with my children feels like a big achievement. Parenting isn’t easy, although it isn’t meant to be, but I embrace it regardless and do my best to be a good role model for my children. I’ve published a few books now, spoken at events and even been on the radio, but more recently I’ve started University. I’m really proud of that because I never thought I’d be able to. I mean, I’m 29 now so I’m not quite sharing the same experiences as some of the other students, but it’s amazing that I even get this opportunity to pursue a dream I’ve always had. I believe everything happens for a reason and if I had tried to go to university at 18, I would have failed because I had so much going on at that time.

books website

Photo Credit: Paul Stringer

What is your long term vision for yourself? | I just want to be happy – and I am. I am on this journey of self-love and self-development, and although I’m not entirely sure where I’ll end up, I know I will be happy. I’m conscious that my children are watching and learning first-hand from me what it means to be a woman in this world, so this motivates me to be authentic and focused on building a legacy for them. I want to continue to follow my passions and have creative freedom at every step I take. I’d like to be known for my personal self-love journey as well as my writing, because they go hand in hand and I like to inspire others.

What have you sacrificed or willing to sacrifice to achieve your vision? | If I’ve learned anything so far in life, it’s that people are temporary. Everything is temporary really, but some relationships with people aren’t meant to last forever. As you start to experience things and begin to better yourself, you soon realise who is holding you back and who is growing with you. Not everybody will be comfortable with your level of growth but a true friend wouldn’t hinder you. I used to worry too much about what other people thought and whether I fitted in, but I’ve since worked hard on my self-love and learned to validate myself. It’s all very well living to please others but what about you? Why not try and please yourself? I’m not a massively emotional person and I’ve learned not to take everything personal. I’ve lost and gained friends over the years, and I am grateful for all the lessons I’ve learned. Not everybody will contribute positively to your life and I’ve allowed some friendships to dwindle because I recognised that there had been a shift. I want to focus on my children, writing, university, promoting self-love and raising awareness of domestic violence and mental health; if anything or anyone compromises any of that, I’m just not interested.

What advice can you give to other young women that want to pursue their dreams but are afraid to do so? | Just do it. Time is the one thing we spend and can’t earn back. So why waste it procrastinating? Sometimes we’re just as scared of getting it right as we are of getting it wrong. I think it’s better to try and see how you get on, rather than always wondering “What if?”. Even if you fail, it’s not actually a loss because you then know what doesn’t work and can try something else. It’s all about perspective. So, don’t think about all the reasons why you can’t do it. Think about all the reasons why you should. It doesn’t have to all happen at once, you just have to start.

Annika’s Social Media | Website | Blog | Facebook | Twitter | Instagram

Ambitious women; Let’s hear from Jacque

2 Nov

Name| Jacque Amadi

Tell us a random fact about yourself | I’m currently learning Korean, and I plan on visiting next year!

What is your current occupation? | Currently I do a lot of stuff, ha! I own a digital marketing boutique, but I also am an infopreneur, and an online shop owner.

Would you class yourself as an ambitious woman? | For sure! I think it’s possible to design your life to align with your vision, and everything I do is to reach my ultimate goal of being able to uplift and employ young women like myself.

Have you always been ambitious? If not what was the turning point for you? | I’ve always been driven to succeed, although there was a short period in college where I wasn’t very motivated to do much of anything. As a former straight A student, college was a huge change and I did give up. I didn’t drop out, but mentally I just didn’t want to be there. However I found my calling in entrepreneurship when I started making and selling bow ties on Tumblr (random, I know) and my passion was renewed! I ended up opening up an online vintage shop and things only went up from there.


What is your biggest achievement to date? | My biggest achievement? I left my full time job a few months ago, and just recently I finally started making as much on my own as I did there. That’s huge for me!

What is your long term vision for yourself? | Being able to employ other women of color. I don’t care what I’m doing, as long as I’m able to hire those who aren’t always given a fair chance.

What have you sacrificed or willing to sacrifice to achieve your vision? | I’ve sacrificed money for sure! But now, I’m willing to sacrifice time.

What advice can you give to other young women that want to pursue their dreams but are afraid to do so? Remember that life is short. This is morbid but you never know what will happen tomorrow…so do what you can while you’re still here!

Jacque’s Social MediaWebsite | Twitter | Facebook | Instagram

Ambitious women; Let’s hear from Leah

9 Oct

Name Leah Binham

Tell us a random fact about yourself I was born 4 weeks premature and weighed the same as two bags of sugar and to top it off my head was massive (still is haha).

What is your current occupation? I am a Visual Merchandiser for home, fashion & beauty and I am also a Lifestyle blogger. For anyone who doesn’t know what a Visual Merchandiser is, I basically implement windows and in-store schemes from the painting, floor covering (glorified decorator/cleaner) to styling, positioning and branding. I also deal with POS such as banners, ticketing, and window graphics which are used for brand events and sales. I coordinate and put in place the launch of beauty/perfume window display promotions on a fortnightly basis.


Would you class yourself as an ambitious woman? YESSIR I do I do I do  oooooooooo haha… no doubt about

Have you always been ambitious? If not what was the turning point for you? I have always wanted to succeed in everything I do and I have ALWAYS gone for what I want no stopping me.  I wanted to move to London I did it, I wanted to be a Visual Merchandiser I did it and I always wanted to go to New York I DID IT ALL. I don’t believe in talking about things all day long just get your behind up and go do it.

What is your biggest achievement to date? My biggest achievement has been losing nearly 5 Stone, changing my lifestyle, becoming vegan and taking hold of my own happiness.

What is your long term vision for yourself? My long term vision is to maintain HAPPINESS 100%, live a simplistic lifestyle and buy bananas by the box every week. I also want to take over the healthy food scene with my brand Cakes & ish. Cakes & ish is a plant based food brand which uses no wheat, dairy, eggs or refined sugars. My biggest aim is to show people that they can have the foods they want but just in a healthier and much more beneficial way. So keep a look out for my funky, cool and quirky food spot one day!


Display table at the Cakes & Ish taster evening in September

What have you sacrificed or willing to sacrifice to achieve your vision? If I am really honest I would say that in trying to achieve my vision over the past 2 years or so my social life has been pretty non-existent. I had always wanted to go to New York so back in September 2014 I saved every penny I could for 4 months, all I did was work, gym and home. So interacting with other people was very minimal but it was necessary to do the things I wanted to achieve personally. My vision never ends at one exact point, my vision is the type of life I want to live so I will do everything I can to make it happen and keep it happening.

What advice can you give to other young women that want to pursue their dreams but are afraid to do so? If there is something you want instead of listing why you can’t possibly get it find out how to get, then work out how to keep hold of it. We waste a lot of precious time telling ourselves that we CAN’T when that whole time you could be doing what you said you couldn’t. Be yourself, trust yourself, arm yourself with knowledge and become the master of your craft. Remember only we can achieve our goals, dreams and ambitions because it all comes from within.

**Leah is a new friend of mine but since we started speaking we instantly clicked. Since then we speak practically everyday. I love her personality and positive vibes. Her vegan brand is going to do so well! I know it. Check out her awesome blog too for all things vegan and healthy. Make sure you show her some love!**


Me and her friend helping out at her recent event

Leah’s Instagram 



Ambitious women; Let’s hear from Chika !

28 Aug

Name: Chika Woodward

Tell us a random fact about yourself: I can speak Fijian. I lived in Wayasewa Island in Fiji when I was 17.

What is your current occupation? Owner/operator of Monpe Japanese catering service and a teacher of Japanese language and drum kit.

Would you class yourself as an ambitious woman? I am very ambitious to some extent. I would be even more so if I wasn’t married.

Have you always been ambitious? If not what was the turning point for you? Yes, I always had some sort of idea and plan. I would usually have to act on it straight away. Even if I was in school, if there was something I had to do, I would skip school and go and do it.

One time I got on the train to go to school and ended up in the middle of Tokyo. The journey took 2 ½ hours and a £60 train fare just to visit this place I wanted to see. I went places like Harajuku for amazing crepes, visited funky clothes shops etc. and then went to see a man who I was seeing at that time. Then I went home at night like I had just come home from school!

I’m not sure if that’s ambition or me being a selfish woman! Ha!

What is your biggest achievement to date? It’s difficult to say which is the biggest. I moved from Japan when I was 20. I had 2 children. Started teaching and carried on studying.

I had the opportunity to go on a free trip to Paris to compete in the EuroMusic Contest in 2014. Going to Paris was such a great thing to happen to my band. We came #1 in England for this online voting EuroMusic contest (please note: completely different from Eurovision!). This contest was organised by a French lady called Romy and her team. She managed to succeed in crowd funding to make it happen. (Check Euro Music contest 2014 for more info). Basically, they paid for all 10 finalists from Europe and flew us to Paris to stay in an amazing country house. We were fed well and played in an amazing venue! Unfortunately we didn’t win but if we did, we could’ve gone to Greece to record our music in an award winning studio with a swimming pool! It annoyed me that the band from Germany won because they didn’t even look happy! I would’ve been kissing, hugging and thanking everyone in the world if I had won!

I also have my own catering company. These are all big achievements in my life.

What is your long term vision for yourself? I’d love to have my cooking range in shops for people to buy and cook Japanese food at home.  At the moment, I’m working on the packaging and once I’m happy with it, I’ll start knocking on doors! Not many people cook Japanese at home in this country so my mission is to spread Japanese home cooking to Britain. It will be nice to see my cooking sauces in people’s kitchen.

What have you sacrificed or willing to sacrifice to achieve your vision? There are so many things I would have done differently if I weren’t married. I got married when I was 20 and had my first child at 21. I love the fact that I am still 37 and my children are old enough to cook meals for me! But I can’t be selfish now and put myself first. I tend to choose things that I can do while taking care of them. Things I learnt as I got older is that there’s always a solution to a problem. If I had to work but I needed to take my children somewhere, I would find the best way to do both.

Planning is the key! No need to give up what you want to do because you have children, you just need to be more flexible and organised. There’s always a solution.

What advice can you give to other young women that want to pursue their dreams but are afraid to do so? It is normal to be scared if you are starting something new or making a huge change in your life. I am lucky that I don’t panic or worry about things. But I know a lot of people do worry. You start thinking about obstacles and the tasks then it becomes too much to handle. As a result, you become too scared to act on it. If you are that sort of person, preparation helps MASSIVELY! Read everything, do research and ask people who are already in the position you want to be in. Have a trial. For example, if you want to be a journalist, find someone who is working in that area and shadow them or volunteer to find out what it is like and gain new experience and skills.

If your dream seems too big, just take it one step at the time. Writing a plan helps. Get a large paper, put your goal at the top and write everything you need to do to reach that goal. Cross out things you manage to do. You can then see clearly when you’re making progress towards your goal.

I am happy when I’m doing something I enjoy. At the end of the day it’s not all about money, is it?

Ambitious women; Let’s hear from Sarah

26 Jun

Name: Sarah Abdullah                                                  

Tell us a random fact about yourself: They call me crazy but I don’t care

What is your current occupation? Network marketer business owner

Would you class yourself as an ambitious woman? Yes

Have you always been ambitious? If not what was the turning point for you?

I have always been an ambitious from an early age yet what I found was that I was walking the wrong direction from being a 9-5 job role straight after university. I tried many businesses while being in the 9-5 after university but what I struggled with was finding the right idea which would make me financially independent to fulfil my big dreams. Once I was introduced into network marketing it then allowed me to find a business which provided ‘financial freedom’ having both a combination of time and money which I found incredible.

I have also learnt how  to grow as a person through massive personal development, my mindset, desires and whys is very strong, I know the goals that I want to achieve in the next 5 years due to by business. Personal development has changed my whole life around. Not only is my business going well but my relationships with family and friends have become stronger and healthier too due to understanding the psychology of the way people think, behave and act.

What is your biggest achievement to date?

All my learning has been developed from the businesses I’ve started and had to take massive action and make scarifies most young 20 year olds would not do. The most rewarding achievement to this date is  now is teaching business partners everything I know. Teaching others and helping others succeed is very rewarding.

What is your long term vision for yourself?

My long term vision to to accomplish all my why’s and give back to my family, I am very blessed and humbled that my family have been there for me from day one and provided me with everything that I have. I never came from a rich background but my family have always got my back when I have been in trouble!

3-5years time I will be financially free willing all goes to plan. With the wealth I generate I will be investing in properties minimum 2 a year which will include a family business that I will be franchising globally.

I have had much inspiration from multi billionaires and multi millionaires that I have read into and they have inspired me to give back! I would want to eventually in the next 10 years own my own charity helping those in 3rd world countries. Theres a huge world out there and there is nothing better than to help those who are unfortunate as they need help and I am willing to make sure I give back! Generosity comes first in my books and always will but it is better to be generous to people in need to those who aren’t.

What have you sacrificed or willing to sacrifice to achieve your vision?

I am willing to sacrifice absolutely everything and I have already scarified everything.

I have sacrificed working full time to focus and achieve my goals. I was always a person who had a job and always was always spending money as I enjoyed to. Since leaving full time work financially it has been a challenge for me as no business takes off at the start so I had to learn how to budget my finances which meant seriously no over spending! My inner circle of friends that know me very well have always known me to be a socialite but since this business I have stopped:

  • going out every weekend,
  • stopped eating out to nice restaurants,
  • stopped going to the gym 5 times a week,
  • stopped spending on holidays,
  • I gave up my shopping addiction,
  • stopped wasting time with negative people.

If I was going to pursue the journey I wanted I would need to change everything so my,  environment is no longer negative people which includes negative friends, I stopped wasting my money on nights out every weekend, I stop falling into gossip and rubbish TV dramas and sitcoms and I no longer listen to the news.

Now my circle of friends is held in one hand and these are people I aspire to and what to be like. They always say be friends with people that inspire you and dream bigger than you and I am proud to say I have this circle now. I have business meetings everyday, trainings 4 times a week, attend business events twice a week and read everyday while travelling and at home 30mins /2hours a day on average. Home cooked meals and packed lunch is my normal routine now, I gave up the luxuries of going to bars and clubbing in west end london.

All the changes and sacrifices I made was so worth it! I am so much happier as I have the freedom to do as I please. For months of struggle my dreams are starting to pay off from this month :). You fail your way to the top, hard work will then make your successful but you will fail so many times within your journey before success is rewarded at the to the key is to persist until you have won!

What advice can you give to other young women that want to pursue their dreams but are afraid to do so?

Always have a why don’t make your why about yourself make it about someone else and something so passionate that when you think about it you will cry. If you why doesn’t make you cry then it is not strong enough and you will quit! Passion and a burning desire is what makes peoples dreams come true so your why  is very important! Write it down and look twice a day when you wake up and when you sleep at night!

NEVER LISTEN TO PEOPLES LIMITED THINKING AND BELIEF SYSTEM! Why listen to peoples opinions their opinions don’t make you money and don’t make your ambitions come to light! Be around people who believe in you!

Always write down your goals, the goals you want to achieve , write the date, write the money you want to earn and what you will do with that money. Yes a date is included but never dishearten yourself if the goal is not met by that date as success should not have a time limit make sure you keep working until that goal is achieved.

Persist persist and persist Thomas J Edison failed more that 10,000 times when creating the light bulb remember the greatest ideas come for continuous persistence!

Always educate yourself to books like: rich dad poor dad (Robert Kiyosaki) , Think and Grow Rich (Napoleon Hill), Magic of Thinking Big (David J Schwartz) and the list goes on.

Remember ‘FEAR’ and ‘DOUBT’ is what stops people from achieving their dreams, don’t let those thoughts stop you from achieving your passion.