SIDE HUSTLE STORIES – MARIAM HI

So, Who is Mariam Hi?

I’ve worked in higher education for the last 8 years, which wasn’t planned but I’ve really enjoyed it. I started at a new university this September after taking a 6 month career break- which was the best thing I’ve ever done! I used to be a meticulous planner, thinking life could be organised down to the minute. Once I let go of trying to control the impossible, I started enjoying the ride so much more. After a lot of soul searching, I feel like I have a good sense of who I am, what I want and am entirely unapologetic for being me. I hope you get a sense of that on my social media, I try not to let it be too polished as the gloss isn’t real.

How did you cross paths with Julie and Happy Side Hustle?

I honestly don’t remember how I came across Julie, I think I saw an advert for the challenge week and I thought I’d give it a go as it was free- so I had nothing to lose and everything to gain!

How did you feel when you found out about the challenge?

The challenge came at the exact time I was feeling a bit lost and directionless, so it stood out as hopefully being the golden ticket to get me back on track.

Why did you decide to join it?

I know there’d been challenge weeks before, and there’ve been challenges since. In my experience, the challenge made itself known at the exact time I needed it. I’d quit my full time job to work out the right path for myself and had just about got my head around not working full time but hadn’t quite developed the discipline for self employment. There was something in the marketing that made me feel joining the Happy Side Hustle Challenge week would help me find the balance between taking a career break while keeping the momentum of my own business.

What was your favourite part of the challenge?

Without question, the best part of the challenge was the community in the group. It’s the main reason I decided to join the Hive and why I’ve stayed since!

What was your biggest takeaway or a-ha moment from the challenge?

I’m so used to going from 0-100, that the challenge really helped me understand that my business is mine. There’s no timescales or expectations aside from the ones I set. As a lifelong people pleaser, this was probably the most liberating realisation and the permission I didn’t realise I’d been denying myself.

Who would benefit most from this challenge?

There’s so many facets of the challenge, which will benefit people in different ways. I’m my opinion, the ones who’ll benefit most are those who have an idea for a hustle or business and just isn’t sure how to move it forward or have a specific block and need a bit of help to overcome it.

Where can we find you?

My website is www.stardustinstitches.com or you can find me on FacebookInstagramTiktok (sometimes) and Etsy as Stardust in Stitches.

What is your next big goal?

I’ve got a few ranges in the pipeline and their release is my next big goal. Watch this space!

Are you in the ‘Start your Happy Side Hustle’ or ‘The Hive’?

The Hive! I love being a bee amongst other fantastic and inspirational women.

Did you have any experience running your own side hustle before? How did that go and what do you know now that you didn’t know then?

This is my first side hustle! I’ve been working in some capacity or other since I was in school, and when I wasn’t working I (or even at the same time) I was volunteering. I finally decided I wanted to do something just for myself.

What’s your biggest tip for someone who’s considering setting up a side hustle?

Research, research, research. Get rich quick schemes don’t exist and there’s a big leap between a hobby and running a business. Make sure you actually want to run a business, which involved putting a lot of work in and taking time to learn skills you won’t even realise you’ll need at the outset. It’s hugely rewarding if you’re willing to take the leap, but unbelievably frustrating if you’re expecting overnight success for just showing up.

What’s your favourite thing about being in The Hive / Start Your Happy Side Hustle?

Running your own business is so different from being employed where you have a specific job to do and a safety net when you need it. Being part of a community that understands how hard it can be to juggle ALL of the hats and keep each other supported and motivated has been transformative.

What’s your favourite thing about your new happy side hustle?

My favourite thing about Stardust in Stitches is that it’s mine and I get the privilege of sharing it with you!.

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