Updated: Jan 13
I'm writing a book for gen-z (available now!) filled with advice from successful people around the world, here's a sneak peek of one of the interviews I did with language expert and entrepreneur, Faiza Muhamad.
If you missed cooking school founder, Vanessa's story, you can find it here: She Couldn't Even Afford Water, So She Did This.
October 2018, Bali, Indonesia
Language Expert & Founder, Makna Wacana
Faiza and I met at a female entrepreneurship event in Bali. The event was miraculously communicated in both English and Indonesian. Faiza was the one translating from one language to the other. After every few sentences, she would step in to translate. I was so impressed by her patience and skill to complete such a task. She was a life saver; without Faiza at that event, I wouldn’t have understood 80% of the content.
I was super excited that we could talk about what success means to her and what advice she would give her teenage self. Faiza has an interesting story, as she was raised partly in Indonesia and partly in Holland, before finally settling in Bali. She was exposed to many different languages as a young age and stresses how beneficial it is for Indonesian people to learn English in order to build a better life for themselves.
Maeve: How do you define success?
Faiza: For me, success is doing what you love and loving what you do. You do it wholeheartedly and you feel that sense of fulfillment by the end of every task. You're growing as a person from your experiences and from your interactions. Success is when you're happy with who you are, with whom you’re becoming, and with what you’re doing.
Maeve: What is something you wish you could go back and tell yourself when you were a teenager?
Faiza: I would tell the younger version of myself that the things that I focused on obsessively are just a part of being a teen, most of them don’t really matter.
You don’t have to be good at everything. You don’t need to beat yourself up. If you’re bad at something, then maybe it’s just not part of your gift and you should focus on what you can do well. Be more productive and stop beating yourself up over something you’re not great at.
Be the truest version of you. You don’t have to fit in, because if you don’t, there’s probably a good reason for that. This is a colorful world full of different people; you don’t always have to fit in. It’s totally fine and it’s not an issue.