Does their “helpful guidance” really want what’s best for you?

They looked at me with disdain and told me I would never make it in the fashion industry, that being a fashion designer wasn’t a “real” job. I should pick a career with substance, and what makes me think I would be any different to everyone else out there?
Because I AM ME. Because I will never give up. Because this is what I love. Because I will be RESILIENT. I learnt very quickly to spring back like a rubber band, from all directions. I got the looks, the eye rolls, and the snickers. I was told what I should and shouldn’t do if I wanted to be a success, and break into the industry.

They said my brand would be,” too different”, I needed to, “keep it mainstream”, and it went on and on. Basically I was having people trying to crush my dream before it had even begun. Giving me all the reasons why it wouldn’t work. Yet in my heart I had my vision and I knew what I wanted my brand to be. I think people assumed because I loved fashion and dressing up, and had a mop of blonde hair, that somehow building and running my own business was unachievable.
These are the times you must take that one word and turn into it, you’ve got to grow a tad of thick skin lovelies. I literally lived by the word, resilience! I must say, I never quite understood why people would pop out of the woodwork giving me their “helpful advice”, and what I noticed was it was never positive, inspiring, or uplifting. I would think to myself, why wouldn’t you want someone to be happy and succeed at something they truly loved?

One of the driving forces of wanting to start my own brand was because I was so passionate about helping women, wanting them to look and feel beautiful inside and out. Especially as a mother (been there, done that twice), when at times it feels hard to juggle it all and have time for yourself, to look after you. Looking back, I know just how important that is. This was my purpose, this is what I wanted to do with my life. I wanted to design clothes that gave women confidence, made them feel special. To guide them from all walks of life on how to dress for their own body, no matter what the size or shape.

Should I really be taking on board other’s opinions of what they think I should be doing? What are they doing in their own life to give them the right to question mine.  Are they trying to forge a path to do what they love? I understand that not everyone will say, “Yes, I am going to do this!”, but if you don’t, should you stop someone from chasing their dream. NO and yip that’s in capitals! Every human being has their own loves, thoughts, ideas, aspirations and things that make them excited to hop out of bed in the morning.

We are all unique, every one of us, so of course we may take other paths, have an inspiration to jump on the freeway without a destination, while others will stroll through the park and be able to just appreciate their surroundings, having no desire to change them. Do you get what I mean?

I walked away from a secure corporate career, leaving behind the “safeness”, and heading into the unknown, wondering if this was just some crazy notion of mine or some phase I was going through. Of course in those times, we will have moments sneaking in of self doubt and fear. I have now learnt over the years to believe in my gut, that it always has my back, and to trust it. If I hadn’t tried what I wanted to do in life, to put myself out there, and give it a go. I would never have known what I can or can’t do, and what I’m capable of.

By exploring and trying different things is how we learn, how we really figure out the truth of what we want, and also what we don’t want. There is nothing wrong with that, and there is everything right about it! Some people believe that we don’t need to love what we do, that a job is just a job. It’s a way of bringing in income so you can live and survive. Yet many of us spend more time at our jobs than with our loved ones, so we have the right to be happy there too.

When you feel you have something to offer this world, when you are driven to make a difference in some way, no matter how big or small, by doing what you are good at and enjoy. Never take that for granted, it’s a gift. You don’t have to take it all on at once, even just the decision to allow yourself to gather more information, to make a list of baby steps. As the saying goes, don’t look at the whole staircase, just put your foot on one step at a time.

The people that questioned my success of being a business owner, didn’t know at the time, if I hadn’t been resilient, how quickly their words would have made me want to give up, and second guess everything I was doing. If I had listened to them, where would I be now? They would have gone and lived their lives how they wanted to, yet I would still be standing there having lost the vision of mine. You and only you have the power to choose your own path, don’t hand that over to a “passer by”. You put that crown on your head and wear it with pride and determination.

I’m here to get in your face and tell you to chase your dreams, follow your heart, live your purpose and your passion! All the people that broke the silence to bring me down, are now the ones that are silent. From building my “baby”, Lilika Designs (named after my mother), literally from the ground up in a bedroom of my home, amazing opportunities came to me, including showcasing my brand around the globe. Then going on to become an author with my first book, “Passion, Fashion & Heart”, and sharing my personal journey with the world.

Have faith and trust in YOU. Nobody else can be you, you’ve got a take on things, a different perspective, and a way of delivering that nobody else has. So whatever rocks your boat lovely people, you dig those oars in and you keep on paddling until you get there, because you will! Take others words that don’t serve you and let them fuel your wonderful fire and passion for what you want to do.
I am now living a life I love, a beautiful life, doing what I adore everyday and the word resilience that I carried with me on my journey I still hold onto tightly today. So take it now and see where it leads you. You’ve so got this!

With love Christina x

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