Shabana Feroze is yet another admirable human being that belongs to the Bahraini book community. At Qamber Designs & Media, we consider Shabana a true modern Renaissance woman. Not only does she write, teach fitness, and run her own company, she also advocates for self-love through fashion, money-management, and more! Today Shabana was kind enough to chat with us about her journey in life and in writing her self-help book, Loving Yourself in Style.
NQD: You are the author of Loving Yourself in Style. Tell us what it entails and why it was important for you to write it.
Shabana: I strongly believe in the power of loving yourself. It changes your life. It certainly changed mine. I wanted everyone to know about this concept of falling in love with who you are, and how to start loving yourself when you might not even like yourself. I always found that small things like dressing up and taking pride in your appearance make you like yourself more, and pursuing your passions makes you love yourself. This leads you to become intrinsically happy.
I pull on my own experiences in LYIS and write about how I think women can love themselves more by making small changes in their lives. In LYIS I talk about topics like practical things you can do to follow your passion, having a positive body image (since I’m a fitness instructor and being happy with your body is such a big part of being happy as a person), fashion and style, emotions, money-management, and getting to the Authentic You.
NQD: How have your readers’ reactions been so far?
Shabana: I’m very happy to say that so far absolutely everyone who has read the book has loved it. They have found my writing easy to read and a lot of them have said it feels like a friend talking to them, which is exactly how I wanted it to come across as. Readers have said that the messages in the book were extremely helpful for bringing change to their mindset and their life. Some have said that what I wrote in the book is nothing new (it certainly isn’t.) A lot of people have talked about loving and finding yourself, but they still loved reading it from my perspective and that it’s a great reminder for them to put themselves first.
The book has even inspired a few female readers to start their own businesses and follow their dreams, which makes me immensely happy.
NQD: What’s been the most surprising aspect of being a self-published author?
Shabana: I really didn’t realize how easy it would be to get my book published by myself! I built it up in my head as something that would be very difficult and that I would have to go through a lot of red tapes. But it wasn’t! Qamber Designs and Media were my publishers, and Nada Qamber and I literally did everything by ourselves, even though it was all new to us. We made a huge dream come true for both of us.
NQD: What were your trepidations when it came to publishing your words?
Shabana: It’s definitely the Imposter Syndrome. I kept thinking, "Who do I think I am to tell anyone how to live their life?" I don’t have a degree in psychotherapy or psychology. I’m not 60 years old, I don’t have a ton of life experiences behind me that I can preach my wisdom.
It’s always the self-doubt that gets you. In the end, you have to just remember that you’re writing because you want to get your message out in the world, no matter what anyone thinks of it.
NQD: When you decided to self-publish, how did you know where to go, and what sources to follow to make that a reality?
Shabana: I really didn’t know anything. The universe just manifested whatever I wanted. I needed a publisher once I almost finished writing my manuscript. Over a cup of coffee with Nada, I casually asked her what her passion is, and she said she wants to start publishing books. I found my publisher and editor that way. That boosted my confidence and made me believe the universe will help me on my journey to make this dream come true, as cheesy as that sounds. Because I’m in advertising, I knew printers who could publish my book. I asked them how to go about the publishing bit, I got the ministry approval and ISBN number, and et voile, we published LYIS.
NQD: How has being a fitness instructor and the owner of an advertising agency contributed to who you are as an author?
Shabana: Everything that I do in life has contributed to who I am as an author, and being a fitness instructor and the founder of The Silver Kick Company are major parts of that. Both these roles require me to meet different people of different ages, from all walks of life. Both these roles have contributed to what I have learned about life and about who I am. And both these things are huge passions of mine. I love helping others get fitter and I love the world of advertising. They made me realize how important it is to find work that you love doing, and how that helps you grow as a person and be proud of yourself.
NQD: Do you see yourself writing more books? If so, what would you like to talk about in your future works?
Shabana: I am almost finished with the manuscript of my second book. I love writing about how women can become better, stronger, and happier versions of themselves. Maybe that will change in the future, but I do think I’ll be writing about how we can live life in a way that we’re happy and at peace with ourselves, no matter what’s happening in the outside world.
NQD: Who do you consider to be your inspirational muse for everything that you preach in your book, Loving Yourself in Style?
Shabana: I honestly don’t have one single inspirational muse. But it’s all the self-help authors I have read over the years that have helped me with my self-confidence and made me more comfortable with who I am as a person. It’s all the learning from those books that I applied to my life and adapted to my way of living, and that helped me shape the advice I give in the book.
NQD: Do you think the Bahraini book community, which comprises of not just readers and bloggers, but published authors, instapoets, designers, and the like, is a successful community? If so, how can it be even better?
Shabana: There are so many talented people here, but they’re not as successful as they could be. It could become much better if businesses like local bookshops actively supported and promoted the Bahraini author and book community.
About the Author
Shabana Feroze is a Bahraini entrepreneur, author, artist, anti-FGC activist, fitness coach, and influencer. She is the founder and managing director of award-winning creative agency The Silver Kick Company, located in Bahrain. Her book Loving Yourself in Style explores the freedom of expression through personal style, the struggle of growing up in a world of unachievable beauty standards and finding your authentic self. As an internationally certified fitness coach, Shabana teaches fitness classes in 5-star hotel gyms in her free time. Shabana is currently expanding her The Silver Kick Company into the field of tech, trying to bridge the gap between the arts and sciences for a kinder and sustainable corporate environment.