Never be a victim of life; be its conqueror

11392929_10155597264175487_488535004244395178_nNaballah, a 25 year old Muslim stylist, fashion and travel blogger, designer and UWI graduate, is a multitalented young woman.  She grew up in Chaguanas, Trinidad and  is currently working on launching her own Hijab collection. Her accomplishments have earned her a committed following online as well as feature interviews on the BBC (links below). Commenting on how she was able to achieve all that she has, she said, “I mastered my art and was able to take it forward and create my own platform in the form of my blog and YouTube channel and now my own Hijab line; cultivating a niche for others to learn and simultaneously be inspired. This in turn has drawn the attention of many individuals and organizations, many of whom have invested time and money into my work which consequently brings many benefits for me including financial gain, visibility and publicity.”
However, as many others have experienced before, her journey was not always easy, “On many occasions I’ve been turned away from opportunities because of my faith and wearing my Hijab. Hijab is an extension of my spirit and I felt like every time I was turned away from joining a team whether in a corporate setting or, say, sports, it made me feel as though I couldn’t get anything done wearing my Hijab. Establishing a Muslim identity was difficult especially when you feel obliged to neglect your spiritual dimension in the quest for materialism and sensual pleasures. This leads to struggle with issues like low self-esteem, particularly given the negative media attention surrounding my identity and faith community. When you suffer from low self esteem you usually try to mask it with an outward pretense of extroversion.” Despite the challenges she has faced as a Hijabi woman, she was able to rise above and move ahead by acknowledging her self worth and believing in herself.
In the future, Nabs hopes to have her own business; a branded line of Hijabs and scarves called ‘Chijabs’. She also hopes to continue her travelling, blogging and launch her own website. Asked what advice she’d give to others, she says, “My advice to anyone facing the same discouragement I faced would be to know that discouragement is not the absence of adequacy but the absence of courage. Many times we are discouraged because we feel as though we are incapable of doing something when the reality is that we can but we lack the courage to do it.
Never say that you can’t do something with your Hijab on or that something seems impossible, or that something can’t be done, or that Hijab limits what you can achieve. No matter how discouraging or harrowing it may be; human beings are limited only by what we allow ourselves to be limited by: our own minds. We are each the masters of our own reality; when we become self-aware to this: absolutely anything in the world is possible. Master yourself, and become king of the world around you. Let no odds, doubt, fear, or ANY mental virus prevent you from accomplishing your dreams. Never be a victim of life; be its conqueror.”
BBC Interview (colourful hijabs):  http://www.bbc.co.uk/programmes/p02rzn1f
BBC Interview 2: http://www.bbc.co.uk/programmes/p02rmj93

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