All of us are where we are today partly because of our own efforts and partly because of the advice, guidance, influence and inspiration provided by others. At Voyage we have the good fortune of connecting with so many of the city’s hidden gems – from entrepreneurs and creatives to athletes, researchers and more. We asked them a simple, but important question: what is the best advice, personal or professional, that you’ve ever received?
Isla Cervelli – Actress, artist, Writer, Brand Ambassador, influencer, young entrepreneur
“That it’s important to do your best everyday of your life. As long as you are trying that’s already a success.
To never give up, to maintain strong and be persistent, and to help others, because when you are willing to help and you give, good things comes to you. The law of attraction.”
Melissa Rolland, M.S.
I was in my undergraduate years at Arkansas State University. Campus is located just 19 miles from where I lived my entire life. I had always been close to my family as they were all I had in that small Arkansas town. As with all families, sometimes things got rough. Family members faced hardships and struggled. I had two part time jobs throughout college so I could take care of myself, with little to spare to help my family members. I remember having a conversation with a mentor about the situation. How I would give what little money I had to family in order to ensure they had what they needed. My mentor told me that I needed to live comfortably so I could succeed where I was and give back to them in the future. She told me that I could care about them without carrying stress for them. She explained to me that caring and carrying are two different things and carrying does not help anyone. They are still where they are and I am still where I am. She said just care. Do what you need to do, and just care for them. That perspective changed my entire outlook on things and from then on I have grown so much professionally and personally and can do so much more for my family then I would have been able to if I had not completed my degrees and started my career.
Antonio Bassett – Certified Strength & Conditioning Coach, Sports Performance & Lifestyle Coach; Local Male Model
“I would say the best advice I have been given thus far in life is something my mother would tell me which is ‘Never put faith in man, always put faith in the Lord because man may let you down.’ This is something that can be used in both the personal and professional aspect.” Living by the scripture Hebrews 11:1 – Now faith is being sure of what we hope for and certain of what we do not see. In life we get caught up in trying to keep up with one another and allowing people to dictate our journey. If one has a goal or passion they want to pursue, although at times it may look unreachable, as long as one believes deep down in our heart and put forth the effort everyday that goal or passion can be achieved and accomplished.
Lash Touch Studio – Experts For Lashes -Simply Enhance Your Beauty
The best advice I’ve received was “Working as a beauty service provider, customer satisfaction is always #1 priority and should believe in doing the “right thing” with 100% honesty and transparency. Work hard, put maximum effort, and have a good attitude. Most importantly never give up, cherish moments to step back, look a different approach and plan for a better tomorrow”
Rebecca Hirshman – wreath maker and owner Mama Bear Custom Wreaths, Stay At Home Mom
“Tough times don’t last; tough people do”. This has kept me going through personal and business related difficulties. It helps remind myself that whatever challenges I may be facing, those challenges will in the end make me stronger. Things don’t always work out for the best or how we want them to, but in the end we are stronger and hopefully wiser.
Kate Gunderson-Mechanical/Aerospace Engineer
The best advice I ever received was something my dad said to my while I was struggling with imposter syndrome in grad school. I said to him, “I don’t know why people think I’m so smart, I have to work so hard to get this stuff.” He turned and looked at me and said “Being smart and working hard are the same thing.” Since then I’ve never felt ashamed of the amount of effort I’ve had to put in to succeed. Work hard and no dream will ever be out of reach.
Shazma Sonia – Boy Mom. Strategic Sourcing by profession, lifestyle and fashion blogger by passion
“Courageous leaders never back out of talking about hard things”. This one is near and dear to me because communication is at my very core. I’m a firm believer that everything can be talked over despite the fact that some people would rather not talk out their issues and feel uncomfortable because they see it as “confrontation”. For many years I was led to believe that because I would try to address the root cause of an issue by suggesting to have discussions that I was being confrontational and just needed to “let it go” and be like “everyone else”. Brenee Brown was one of my favorite speakers at the conference and here’s her advice that is so dear to me: “fitting in and belonging are not the same thing, and in fact, fitting in gets in the way of belonging. Fitting in is about assessing a situation and becoming who you need to be to be accepted. Belonging on the other hand doesn’t require us to change who we are; it requires us to be who we are.”
In order to reach our limitless potential we need to be courageous, resilient and allow ourselves to be vulnerable.
Jaime Ybarra – Food Blogger spotlighting bars and restaurants owned locally exclusively in Houston and surrounding areas
“Whatever you decide to do, make sure it makes you happy.”
Ludim Mendoza – Owner and self-taught baker of Ludim Macaron Pastries
Do something you love to do, it makes the sacrifice and hard work worthwhile.
Facebook: Ludim Macaron
Spacey Casey – Aspiring Astronaut and Campaign Coordinator at Visit Houston
“Don’t let your dreams be left as dreams. I am not a dream. I am space.” This advice was conveyed to me via a dream one night.
Melissa Cadavid – Graphic & Web Designer, Networking Pro, and Dancer for The Colombian Folkloric Ballet
Be open-minded with opportunities that approach your path. Always dream big, stay positive and believe strongly that you will accomplish beyond your goals. Stay consistent and you’ll achieve.
Taylor Fryer with Austin’s WRX at TX2K
“Everything happens for a reason” it’s more of a saying but can definitely be taken as advice and can be remembered and applied to any situation in life because everything does happen for a reason
Alicia (cam) Campbell – Artist
The best advice I’ve ever received was, “find something you’re good at and stick with it”. It took years for me to take a hobby I’ve had since my Barbie doll days, find the art in it and take it serious. I’m an artistic person, I have all kinds of creative hobbies and different outlets, however, when it comes to a “career” I find it challenging to just stick to one thing. I find satisfaction in being apart of making a person feel confident in who they are because of a style I did, especially when they could have gone to someone different. There’s a million stylist and artists in Houston but I want my clients to know that the appreciation is mutual with me. I learn so much from them, the different styles, hair textures, products and experience they give. My goal is to always gain as much knowledge as possible with every encounter I have so that I can pass that information along and have those teachings be passed down as well. One other thing I’ve come to value is consistency, consistency is key and I’m excited to grow my business and maintain a constant flow of experience and knowledge.
Stephanie Coleman – Steph Nan Bakes Sweets Creator & Regulatory Specialist
I would say the best advice I received came from my parents, “Do the best you can”. There’s also a Maya Angelou quote “Do the best you can, until you know better. Then when you know better, DO better.” In everything I do I give 100%, I’m still in my second year so I’m learning and growing through experience. Working a full-time job and seeing my sweets business grow has been a huge challenge and example of “doing the best I can”.
Happy Hana Cakes run by Hana Ahmed – Baker
Best advice I received was to be confident and believe in myself, which is what helped me in launching my Instagram page!
Lauren Newsome – Registered Nurse, Baker, and Food Photographer
The best piece of advice I’ve received is to always be a student because there is always something to learn. Be open, honest, and grateful. Creativity is inspired by our experiences.