For International Women’s Day we decided to celebrate YOU: the women in our #OKREAL community. We asked you to send in your stories telling us what you’re proud of and why you’re an #OKREALwoman, and the responses blew us away. We’re so impressed that we’ve decided to feature a women from our community on @heyokreal each week. Thank you for being a part of this, and for leading by example. You truly inspire us.
Stockholm by way of Mexico
I’m an #OKREALwoman because I decided take a turn with my life. I was looking for a sense of fulfillment that wasn’t originally there.
Nine years ago, I co-founded Futura, a creative studio based in Mexico City. Futura is now one of the most highly acclaimed design studios in Mexico. During those years, we created jobs for more than 35 people in Mexico, working for international clients. I just sold my part of the company and moved to Sweden. Even though I had the best position you can reach as a graphic designer, and a very good life in Mexico, I had an opportunity to move with a work and residence permit to a very cold country, and I took it. Now I’m starting over, working on independent projects, trying to collaborate with talented women worldwide. I have learned that there are no barriers (or walls) when it comes to talent, and that women are great to team up with. We are always committed, responsible and hard workers. When you have a group of women that respect each other, there are no hierarchies, and that’s when the magic and the creativity really comes out.
New York City
By being the creator and curator of an online community for black women bloggers, I build connections, boost confidence and share content. If that’s not an #OKREALwoman, I don’t know what is!
I’m super proud of relocating to NYC from the suburbs of Maryland (hey, Prince George’s County) all by myself. I was absolutely terrified but overcame to chase my dreams and pursue my career.
I’m an #OKREALwoman because of my self-confidence and energy. When something pushes me down, I push back twice as hard. I know that nothing will get me down because I’m stronger than whatever problem I’m facing.
I’m proud of venturing out to Singapore on my own and finding my independence, for being self motivated and uncompromisingly ambitious during my college years, and I’m happy to say that my entrepreneur spirit still exists today. That said, I’m not above depending on others from time to time, because it allows me to appreciate the people around me. If I hadn’t taken a risk and stepped out of my safety net in America, I would have never grown to be a mature woman. I would have never met the people who hold such an important role in my life today. I would have not known what I’m capable of.
New York City
OKREAL = ladies with strength, courage, and that je ne sais quoi. Every day I strive to outdo myself in all three.
I’m the founder/CEO of MilkMade: an ice cream business with a Brooklyn shop and home-delivery service established 2009. Last year, in the middle of our busiest season, I had a stroke. (Yes, young, healthy ladies can have strokes too—strokes are actually increasing in young women). It totally took me away from my business and thrust me into a new job, CEO of my own health. I spent my summer navigating the healthcare world, being the detective of my own murder mystery. It opened my eyes to how difficult it is to be an active advocate for your own health. But moreso how necessary it is, whether enduring a saga like mine or just every day. I thankfully solved my mystery (and had an implant put into my heart!) and now am trying to educate people, especially women, about the importance of taking control of your healthcare.
I’m an #OKREALwoman because I recognize the value in having this support and owe it to all of the women that have helped me, to pay it forward.
I am proud that I have overcome the fear of speaking my truth. I used to keep my thoughts to myself, or say things that people wanted to hear, but that doesn’t help anyone. The greatest reward is that by being honest & vulnerable about myself, it creates an inviting space for those around me to speak their truth as well! At the core of the #OKREAL mission is the appreciation of having a community and the overflowing wisdom that comes with it. I wouldn’t have overcome my fear without the members of my community; and women in particular.
I’m an #OKREALwoman because I’m a hustler trying to curate my story, inspiring others in the process.
I recently opened up Kita Yoga in Hong Kong. I left New York (and my job in Finance) last October with a desire to create a beautiful space to practice, host gatherings and build a community in Hong Kong. To leave the certainty of a job and city I loved and move into a realm of ambiguity was definitely a challenge, but one that I was looking for, to be able to evolve as a person and to create something I am proud of. I landed in Hong Kong five months ago and Kita Yoga has now been open for two months—it is surreal (yet so fulfilling!) to see everything come together so fast. Through the process, I am growing, as I learn to become comfortable with not having all the answers.
WE LOVE YOU