Marissa

Hussain

01.

What is your professional title, purpose or passion?

I’m a personal trainer/fitness instructor passionate about delivering fitness and wellbeing to help people embrace, celebrate and care for the body they’re in. I’m on the verge of launching an online membership ‘studio’ which gives people access to a unique mix of workouts, mindset resources and recipes to help nourish the mind & body, cultivating self love and acceptance!

03.

What did you want to do when you were a child and what changed?

My lifetime dream was to be a dancer/actress on the West End (hence the passion for movement!). I was lucky enough to train at a drama school in London and spend some time working in the industry as a dancer/actress. I still have occasional auditions and am still half attached to that career path, but I’ve recently begun to realise that launching this fitness business is where my heart is really at and focusing on both at the same time is pretty impossible. I trained as a PT originally as a side hustle to pay the bills, but I’m ambitious and this career path gives me a lot more control over my success, whilst the performing industry is pretty much a luck’s game! Though I resisted it for a while because of feelings I’d ‘failed’ my dream, I feel like now I’ve found my calling! Being able to spread the joy of movement and create an inclusive environment for all bodies feels like everything that was missing from the performing industry - I don’t think I’m cut out for the harshness of that world!

05.

What's the best career advice you've ever been given?

‘Comfort is the enemy of progress (I think it’s a P.T Barnum quote!)’. I’m a very practical and ‘safe’ person, so have to keep this in mind CONSTANTLY, other wise the fear of not succeeding overwhelms me and I stay in my cushty comfort zone! I don’t think there’s anything wrong with comfort if you’re content where you are, but if you want to push for something more, I think making yourself uncomfortable is the key! This time last year, after being given this advice, I finally quit a job that I hated but was financially very comfortable. My growth since then though has been ten fold because, having no real safety net, I’ve been far more driven to innovate, create and trust myself! It’s been weird how things have really fallen into place since then but I truly believe it’s because I took that initial leap and put the faith in myself!

07.

What is the best thing about your current working environment?

I LOVE working from home! I honestly never want to go back! I am VERY lucky to be living in a lovely flat with a garden in this time and I am just so grateful for this space. It’s allowed me to carry on doing what I love throughout lockdown and to be able to soak up as much sun as possible when it’s out (I’m such a sun baby!!). Being in control of my time instead of always running around chasing things has been a massive shift and I feel so much more empowered! Definitely hoping to keep this going post-lockdown!

09.

Where do you see yourself in five years' time?

This has changed SO much over the last few months and I honestly have no idea where this new path is going to take me! I would love to have built an audience and gained some more influence in the space of fitness/self-love, hopefully have the online membership running successfully with a community of like-minded people all supporting each other! I want to continue learning and growing in my field as I’d love to write a book someday! I’m curious to see whether the dancing and acting makes a comeback but I’m going to let the universe decide!

13.

What drives you?

People. I thrive off human connection and know that I find the most fulfilment when I feel like I’ve helped someone! That’s why I wanted to create an online platform that can reach as many people as possible - I hate to feel like there are people missing out and I’m so excited to build a community of people that can all support each other!

15.

Any final comments?

I hope anyone reading this, with any doubts about launching their own project, finds the courage and faith to just go for it! Though I’m still new to my journey, I think that initial step is the hardest but the most important! And to anyone who wants an accessible dose of joyful fitness and self love, check out mpwrldn.com and come join the gang! Thanks guys xx

02.

What does a normal day look like for you?

The new normal looks quite different to the old one but I’m fully embracing being able to train clients online and work from home (I don’t ever want to have to get on the tube again….!) Now I have a chilled morning, usually waking up at around 8 (absolute luxury!!), and maybe this is naughty but I spend the first half an hour in bed going through my Instagram engagements! I’ve tried the whole no phone as soon as you wake up thing but my mind is so active first thing that I feel it works to get one little task out the way! I then get showered and dressed and make a smoothie (berries, oats, nutella and nut milk ALWAYS!). I’m trying now to get into the habit of some meditation here, but I can’t say I’m that consistent! I then start work at 10 - either coaching clients on Zoom or working on my website/business (I’m so close to launching and there’s so much to do!!). I’m trying to set boundaries now too and finish work at 6pm latest so I can spend time cooking, chilling and going for walks in the evening sunshine!!   I’ve never had such a balanced routine in my life and if lockdown hadn’t happened I would still be burning myself out, so I’m super grateful for that!

04.

What have you achieved that you feel most proud of?

Letting go of the career I dreamed of and came so close to reaching, and admitting to myself that I’m better suited on the path I am now. This has been a very recent realisation and one I’m not sure I’ve even fully come to terms with. But I’m proud for even starting to overcome the feelings of failure that come with ‘giving up’ on a dream, and pursuing something that I know feels more ‘me’. I don’t think we should wait to achieve ‘success’ to feel proud! Celebrating the little wins each day is so important and keeps motivation.

06.

Tell us about a a woman who inspires you

This might be a cliché but seriously, my mum! Though she’s quite the opposite of me in terms of ambition, she has managed to find complete contentment with who/where she is right now, after overcoming some pretty big personal trauma. She has helped me understand what happiness truly means and reminds me every day that the mind is always your most powerful tool. The way she’s managed to train her mindset to gain confidence and peace within herself is incredible and I only hope to be able to do the same! She’s a massive inspiration for my brand and also it’s number 1 fan!

08.

What was your biggest failure?

This is really tricky because as I said before, ‘giving up’ on my dreams of being on a West End stage really did feel like a failure. Everything we were taught at college was that the only alternative to ‘making it’ was failing. But I think I’ve started to understand that’s simply not true. And failure really is just a mindset - if we instead see ‘failures’ as opportunities to grow - as stepping stones along a different path that’s meant for us- they become a lot easier to deal with!

10.

What do you like most about yourself?

I’m proud of my ability to follow through on an ambition. I’m very passionate, and when I have an idea that I truly believe in I am a relentless worker! That’s definitely helped me get this far so I’m hoping it will pay off for this next chapter too!

12.

How can we make the world more inclusive and accepting?

Again, I think education - starting from an early age - has to be the key. The entire systems that our society has been built on are corrupt and broken so we have to rebuild them from the very bottom - which is going to be down to the younger generations. It’s a lot of responsibility but I think it’s a very hopeful prospect! To do this, I think representation is SO important. Marginalised groups need to be validated through the media we consume, so they can feel seen and accepted, and that message can spread into the behaviour of others. It’s up to brands to be as representative and diverse as possible in their marketing and messaging but it’s also up to us as consumers to put that pressure on. We each have to take responsibility for our own thoughts and actions towards both others and ourselves - dismantling our unconscious biases and replacing them with more love - and then making sure that carries through to every aspect of our lives.

14.

What skills have been key to your journey so far?

As I said - determination and commitment to an idea is possibly the biggest - I think everything else comes when you have faith in yourself. That said, I think listening and being receptive to others is important, as is organisation and energy management (ie. not burning out on things that aren’t really going to serve you in the long run) - I struggle with this!! I’m still very green to the whole entrepreneurial life but very keen to keep learning, which I think is the key!

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