Shehzeen did her Bachelors in Computer Science and worked in the corporate sector for about 6 years. She was a department head at a large multinational where she managed one corporate office and two manufacturing facilities. She was also part of the regional leadership team for her department. Shehzeen has been a lifestyle blogger for about 10 years now, she has voted the Best Blogger at the Masala Awards in the UAE and has had two exclusive product collections come out with two global brands over the last three years.
Describe yourself in three words
I’d say spiritual, assertive, patient.
Tell us about your Journey, why you left your corporate career and how you started blogging
I’ve been very fortunate to have had a really fantastic corporate career, with the most incredible experiences. I traveled a lot, learned a lot, built amazing relationships (my best friend and husband are both from work!). But I was at a point in my life where I wanted to do something that would allow me time to focus heavily on my personal development as well, not just professional. I’d been writing in one way or the other since my childhood, and so I just started blogging as a side-thing, while figuring other options out. But luckily it picked up on its own quite instantly and so here I am!
How did you came up with the name ‘The Desi Wonder Woman’
Interestingly, I named it that because initially, I was planning to write about desi women who were doing great things in life. But as the blog grew, it moved into a direction where I started doing more personal lifestyle, and I decided to stick with the name because my audience knew me by it.
What do you think has been the consistent factor which positioned you differently a highly cluttered world of blogging and led you to be where you are now?
I think just being clear that I want to write for what satisfies my own self and at my own pace. I think often people get caught up with writing or creating content for what others want to see or to beat the Instagram algorithm. Of course that works too, there’s no one formula, but I personally feel that it also dilutes your own aspirations, purpose and passions. I’ve always stuck to doing want I want to see in my life, and I do it at my own pace. And I think it’s helped me build an audience that appreciates that authenticity and chooses to stick around for that.
What will be your top three tips for women who want to start blogging
- Figure out what *you* want to write about and choose something that you can do sustainably for a long time
- Respect your audience by giving value to their opinions. Respect yourself by setting boundaries with them.
- Remember, slow growth is also growth. There’s no reason to not like it.
You have been an inspiration for everyone who wants to work from home, can you share your routine that keeps you motivated?
As cliched as it may sound, I treat my day as very sacred – privilege, access & health allow me certain opportunities and I want to honor them. I always try to remember this: how you live your day eventually becomes how you lived your life. I’m a morning person so I enjoy waking up early and set my day around it. Though I do think the key is not in waking up early but in setting a loose structure to your day – you can enjoy waking up later and still work from home well if you’ve created the right structure around it; it’s important to find what makes you feel your best. I always get ready for the day; just like I change into pajamas for a restful night, I believe in changing out of the clothes you slept in for a productive day. I always have a small list of things to do to guide me, I take proper chai and snack breaks to have something to look forward to, and I always shut down by the evening. I actively watchout for burnouts and I give as much importance to rest as my work.
- Which person has influenced you most in life
I would say my father. The things he said and did, teach me something new even till today, so many years after he’s passed. His spirit, strength, softness and capacity to love are my biggest inspirations in life.
How do you wind down when you’re not working
I think investing in personal relationships that matter to you, has to have as much importance in your day as your work. My husband and I always do mini check-ins with each other during work breaks. After work, we often cook together and chat about what our day was like. With dinner, we’ll catch a show together. Afterwards, I chat with my closest friends over WhatsApp, talk to my family. On weekends, I’ll spend time with my plants, do mini projects at home like a small DIY, go for walks, go out for food. And of course most importantly, sometimes just do nothing 🙂
If you compare the times when you started to today, do you think things have changed for women considerably in Pakistan
Absolutely. And it’s incredible how so many women have taken charge of the digital space and created a source of work, especially in a country where opportunities for women are still so limited. So many have created an income for themselves while sitting at home and I think just that is remarkable in itself. There are also more brands tuned in now, bigger chunks of their marketing budgets are dedicated to influencers, and they are now legitimately a part of most brands’ go-to-market strategies.
What would be your message for Pakistani women seeking Financial independence
Find what you’re good at and go for it. It could be something as simple as baking a cake, being good at making phone calls or working at a store. There is nothing taboo about any form of work, work in itself is noble. We have way too many personal limitations attached to everything in terms of whether this job is the ‘right status’ for me, or ‘what will someone else think’ or ‘can I do it’. Earning an income for yourself is incredible so go and find whatever you think you’re good at and give it a shot. Bake goodies for your friends, be someone’s personal assistant, work out of a corporate office – find an opportunity that sits well with you or create it for yourself. And then go for it.