Meet Sana - Founder of Jet Black Social Club, Traveler, Chef, Dancer, Entrepreneur, Partner
Growing up as a first generation South Asian female was HARD. My parents tried pushing a culture I've never known as my own onto me by teaching me how to be the perfect house wife & mother some day. And I didn't quite fit in with my American friends because I was never allowed to go to the mall or hang out with friends after school.
So I created my own little world on the internet and became whoever I wanted to be. I built a community at a young age of people who were also lonely at home looking for friends. But alas, we all had to grow up, go to college & get jobs.
I got the corporate job, got married, had a condo in Brooklyn, A 4-series BMW and everything I was "supposed to have". But, I was absolutely miserable. So I quit my 6 figure job, sold everything and packed a bag with a 1-way ticket to Mexico. We traveled from country to country for a whole year before coming back to NYC in October 2019.
That's when I learned I didn't have to live a life that fit for others. I could create my own life and live exactly the way I want. It's okay not to want kids and it's okay not to want a corporate career either.
I was empowered by so many amazing people that I met along the journey and knew I had to create a community in NYC. To celebrate this amazing melting pot of a city. It's the only place in the world where we can experience so many different cultures in one place.
So I built Jet Black Social Club, a place for New Yorkers to meet the real people & explore the real culture of NYC.
"What is something you are actively going through?"
I recently started doing inner child work through my mental health journey and it's been extremely hard & eye opening to see how much built up trauma I have. Even though it can be mentally and physically draining to remember all the details, I always thoroughly enjoy coming out the other end and having more control over my emotions & life.
I'm actively creating healthy boundaries for myself and being very intentional about who has access to me and my energy. As I build my company, I realize how important it is to keep my energy for my community. The people who need it more than the people who don't.
I've also been journaling everyday for 10 minutes to see if there is any insecurity that I've been holding on to and it's been amazing for my confidence!
"What about your story challenges the status quo or other people's expectations of you?"
I've always been a rebel. I question the way things are all the time. Why do I have to buy a house? Why do I have to have kids? Why can't I do things that make me a happier person? Why do I have to wake up at 5am to be a good CEO?
I believe society norms exist due to fear. I believe people live certain lives due to safety, security & comfort. But I love being uncomfortable. I love talking to people from different backgrounds so I can build empathy and become a more well-rounded person.
At home, I always questioned my parents why I have to get married & have kids. At work, I always questioned my manager why I couldn't be more creative in my role? With my friends, I always ask why complain about your life when you can take control of it and make it better?
So many people want you to have imposter syndrome to hold you down. I refuse to let anything anchor me. That's why journaling and doing the confidence work is so important. If you're confident in who you are and thoroughly enjoy the person that you are, nothing can hold you down!
"Who motivates you most?"
My future self motivates me. I don't ever want to reach the highest version of myself. I want that higher version to keep growing with me so I can continue to be motivated by this version no matter where I get to in life.
It's more important to love the place you're in now & enjoy this moment first. Then want more. Otherwise, you'll never be happy. So I make sure to stay motivated by being ambitious but balancing that with enjoying the process too!
Inspired by Sana's story? Connect with her at:
- Instagram: @SanaAkhand
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