Pursue Your Passion Until Your Passion Pays Your Bills: Ayana Iman

The goal of theysayash.com has always been to inspire people, whether it be through personal style and fashion, travel, stories on beauty, or reflections on life. A few months ago, I decided that I wanted to start a project focused on people who are pursuing or living their passions and making a living off it or hope to do so one day. So I wrote down a plan and left it alone for about two months. Why did I wait so long to start? Fear. I was afraid that it would fail. However, after thinking about this project nearly everyday for months, I decided it was time to stop living in fear and start exercising faith. Therefore, I'm finally pleased to announce the beginning of the Pursue Your Passions Until Your Passions Pay Your Bills interview segment today by introducing you to my friend and transformational blogger Ayana Iman. I hope to bring you these interviews at least once a month so stay tuned!

Ayana Iman exudes light and positivity, and if you have ever interacted with her in person or on social media, you know what I'm talking about. If not, allow me to introduce you to her:

Who are you and where are you from?
My name is Ayana Iman, and I'm a speaker, mother, student, and aspiring transformation coach. I am a native of Trenton, NJ.

What is your purpose?
My purpose is to serve light. I am here to shed light on those who are in the dark through gratitude. My work involves helping others to see the light within them. This light is metaphorical of course, but involves owning your power and becoming the best version of yourself.
How does your purpose align with your passion?
My purpose of shedding light aligns with my passion of travel, which would allow me to help people around the world discover new truths and create a life of abundance. 
How did you discover your passion?
I discovered my passion of travel at a very young age. I love seeing new places and learning new things about the area/culture. I remember at 13-years-old taking the train into New York City alone, while reading a book (probably, Harry Potter), and looking out the window with the smile. It's the adventure I find irresistible.
Do you have any mentors who have helped you on your path? How did you find them and what advice would you give to someone seeking a mentor?
Yes, I do! Mentors are the source of guidance and positive reinforcements. While I've had many mentors, I feel like I've always attracted the right people, at the right time, on the basis of my needs. Mostly, because I actively sought them out, or put myself in the places to be seen and get help. My advice: Be open to learn from everyone, from young children to your elders. There is always a lesson you can learn from others and their experiences, as well as your own. Mentors can be both intentional, and unintentional.
How do you use your passion for good?
I use my passion of travel and shedding light to inspire the masses to believe in their authentic power. This is the power that is not gained by taking it from someone else, or being a tyrant, but when it is cultivated from within to empower you to go the distance. 
What motivates you to persevere when obstacles arise?
Creating an attitude of gratitude has helped me overcome some of the darkest moments in my life. Gratitude being the ultimate thanks, allows me to assess a situation see the good and push forward. It's not always an easy task, but its necessary for growth.
Have you ever felt like giving up or lost focus of your passions? If so, how did you get re-centered?
Yes, more times than not, however I understand that emotions are fleeting; they come and go as swiftly as the wind. I refocus my energy by detaching from the situation for a few hours/days/weeks and just get present where I am. Then I write down what the issue is and how I can resolve the feeling/situation. I ask for guidance where needed, and pray daily. There's no one-size-fits-all prescription for re-centering, just what works for that occasion. You must be fluid, not stagnant. 
What is the most valuable lesson you have learned while pursuing your path?
I've learned to be intent on success. When you set an intention, you have mentally accepted the end result as true. With this intention, brings action, and every move is reflective of that goal. 
What advice would you give to a young person who wants to pursue a career path similar to yours?
The career path doesn't come without a story. In order to truly help people you must be willing, patient, and transparent. Understand that you're not for everyone, but someone will be helped by your message. This message must be consistent, and aligned with your reality. You can't accept foolishness, and denounce it at the same time. Be the candle that ignites others flames. 

What legacy would you like to leave?
The legacy I would like to leave is the one I'm creating now. It's beautiful, bright, and awe-inspiring. The legacy of a woman empowering the masses, teaching others to accept and be unapologetic about their power, and to set no limits on their success. Every product I put out to be reflective of light and to continue to help others when I pass on. 
I want my story to be remembered for bravery, kindness, and laughter. I hope it always brings a smile to people's faces. 

Ayana's social media:
Instagram: @ayanaiman

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