cassandra le, owner of a lifestyle + travel blog quirky pineapple, is a brand stylist and storyteller for the creative, fierce soul.
Ahead, Cassandra shares her story and her tips to building an empire while working full-time....
Hey girl, hey! Raise your hand if you’re working your tail off at your full-time job. . ..Now, raise your hand if you’re also working your tail, and more off, building your own business. . . As a millennial woman, an indecisive and a full on creative soul, who would I be if I didn’t have a “side hustle” that I was working on while also having a steadier income coming in. By day, I work for a large international development company. By night, I work on building my creative online empire helping women entrepreneurs and small business owners hone in on their voice and develop strong communities. I also run a growing lifestyle and travel blog that focuses on thoughtful travel, women empowerment, and international love.
You could say I’ve got a lot on my plate.
If you’re here, I’m sure your plate looks a little something like mine. There are days where I feel extremely overwhelmed with my day job and then frustrated with my side hustle. There are moments where I think I should just call it quits and stick to one thing. But, there’s something that pulls at me every time I open up my laptop and start typing away at new blog posts and creating content. If there’s a pull in you somewhere deep down in the pit of your stomach, I’m no mojo spewing expert, but I am a big believer in listening to your intuition and following your gut; don’t give it up just yet!
As a first generation Vietnamese American, born of immigrant parents, the term “side hustle” never existed in my vocabulary. The words that did exist were: hard work, patience, success, and entrepreneurship. When my parents first came to the United States, they worked extremely hard to get through school and then worked hard to build a thriving business. Entrepreneurship runs in my blood, so when I decided to try and build my online business and blog into something more, I was on a mission. In fact, I told my parents at the wise age of 13 that one day my blog would pay me, and I’ve been on a mission ever since then to make that into a reality!
While the rest of my friends and coworkers meet for happy hour and head out into the city, most of my evenings and weekends are spent with my favorite business partner; my MacBook! It definitely gets lonely sometimes and really tiring, but as soon as I step into my house, I’m opening my laptop and chugging away at writing or working on one small aspect of my business.
For all of you side hustling, determined, and driven fierce divas out there, this is for you! The ones that come home from a long day at the office and stay up late working on their business, I see you and I totally commend you. Here are a few of my favorite tips that keep me grounded and not giving up when I get tired:
Burnout is real. Take a break if necessary.
For me, that meant I took an entire month off of blogging because I felt SO tired of creating content and not seeing results. After my month break, I came back refocused and re-energized to tackle my goals. Taking a break doesn’t mean you’ve given up or that you’ve stopped working on your dream.
Comparison is the thief of joy.
This one seems SO obvious, but is something that will eat away at you if you let it! We have our own journeys, voices, and way of doing things - which means all of our adventures in business will look different. Find inspiration in others work, but never compare theirs to yours.
Work on things one step at a time.
I am the type of person that feels overwhelmed if I realize I have a lot I need to do. This drives my anxiety up the wall! Take things one step at a time, prioritize what’s important in your business, and start working on the smaller tasks first. I dedicate a day to working on the backend of my business and making tweaks if necessary.
Slow growth is not bad.
I’m sure we can all agree that sometimes it feels like our day jobs are holding us back from our business to fully thrive. My day job provides me with a steady income to invest back into my business and blog. It allows me to set things up right and build the foundation I want first, before jumping into being a full-time creative. Slow growth allows me to do all of this!
Network online and IRL.
Building a community or finding one that you can connect with, learn from, grow with, and be inspired by helps make building our businesses with a full-time job a little bit easier.
I will leave y’all with my mantra that I love telling others, and myself because this is the fire that keeps me going:
“You are a strong, independent, and fierce diva! You better WERK!”
Cassandra is a brand stylist and storyteller for the creative, fierce soul. You can usually find her frolicking through cobble-stoned streets, scouting out the best street food, or blogging at The Quirky Pineapple. She believes that there is a fierce diva in everyone and is on a mission to make sure others harness their confidence!
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