Posted on Jun 20, 2019
Haute Hijab Staff
How many of you interact with our social media specialist Mona Mostafa on a daily basis? From her Instalives to her curating your beautiful photos on @hhspottedclub to her filming escapades on our vlog and her correspondence with you on Facebook and in our other social media channels - Mona is a familiar face of the Haute Hijab team! But did you know that before joining HH, she worked in the healthcare field with individuals with mental health diagnoses? Or, that she is a fan of Disney movies?
Get to know more about Mona as she answers 15 fun (and a few deep) questions in our ongoing summer team-focused series - "15 Things You May Not Know About ... "
Mona on her recent trip to South Africa in our Viscose in Olive.
1. What is your favorite thing to do in your free time?
I love alone time where I can reflect on my day or sit back - relax on my couch with a nice comfort meal or have time to catch up on my favorite shows with my husband. Or, I like to watch a Disney movie, which my husband usually excuses himself from! 😂
2. What are your hobbies? What are your dream hobbies?
I enjoy art, photography and creating beautiful content, which is why I love what I do, alhamdullilah.
3, What is something you hate doing?
Hmmm ... hate is a very strong word, and I can’t necessarily think of anything I dislike that much to say I hate it.
4. If you could eat something on an endless loop, what would it be?
Probably lasagna and a kale salad on the side, the one from Costco with the poppyseed dressing! 😂 I would say regular pasta all day everyday, but then I wouldn’t get any protein, haha! I always like to have a balanced meal.
5. What feeds your soul/when are you at your happiest/best?
Mona and her best friend, Sarah.
Doing photoshoots with my best friend, Sarah. I love picking a location with her and then dressing up and taking creative shots. I really enjoy the photo editing process afterwards too - I guess that comes from my love for creating content.
6. Who do you look up to the most and why? (living or dead)
My mom, because she taught me a lot of life lessons that I apply to my life on a daily basis, like putting myself in other people’s shoes before judging a situation and being kind to others regardless of how they treat you. Alhamdullilah for all that she has taught me.
7. What is something, if you could go back and change in your life, that you would?
I believe everything that happens in life is for a reason, and that every event teaches you something that shapes and molds you into the person you are. I believe that you should be thankful for your past and experiences, repentful for your sins, and make the most of those experiences in your future, insha’Allah.
8. What is your biggest challenge in life?
Not having enough time in the day. I wish I had more time to commute to and from work and still have enough time to do everything I need to do when I get home AND have time to spend with my family, like I used to. Unfortunately now, by the time I get home it’s 7 or 8 p.m., and then I only have about two hours to catch up on household chores and spend time with my husband.
9. What is something about you that people would be surprised to know?
I’m a complete and total germaphobe. I don’t share food or drinks with anyone and REALLY DISLIKE it when people sneeze or cough without covering their mouths.
10. What is that big dream thing you want to accomplish in life? Or if not one thing, a few things?
I’ve always wanted to find my niche. I’ve done very rewarding things in my career - working with individuals diagnosed with mental illnesses and helping them find work and go to school, which I wouldn’t take back for the world, alhamdullilah. That had a big part in shaping me into the person I am today and taught me great work ethic. But that being said, I still felt like that wasn’t meant to be my calling for the rest of my life. Something was always missing, but I couldn’t put my finger on it for so many years, which I think is a feeling people often feel.
So, I tapped into my interests of content creation, photography and marketing, and I knew I had to do something with all those things if I could. That’s when I found social media marketing, which I absolutely LOVE, alhamdullilah, because it combines my love for understanding people and what they're interested in with my passion for content creating.
11. For the Muslims at Haute Hijab - what is your favorite or not-so-favorite thing about working at a Muslim-owned company?
My absolute favorite thing about working for a Muslim company without a doubt is being able to go to Jummah (Friday) prayers without question. At my last job, it was very difficult for me to leave for an entire hour, because I had to meet with clients constantly and meet a certain amount of face-to-face time with them per day. We would always take working lunches to make sure everyone scheduled could be seen for the day.
Now, I can go to Jummah, and no one questions me if I took too long there because the khutbah was too long or because it took me too long to get back with traffic or otherwise. Alhamdullilah, I’m so grateful that we have two bosses who not only understand it, but attend with us. I also love that I could take a break at any time to pray, and that there’s a designated prayer area for me to do that.
12. What does a typical Friday night look like for you?
After a long week I usually like to wind-down and relax Friday night to prepare for a usually busy weekend ahead with friends or family. But from time to time, we do make late night plans with friends after work for dinner or game night!
13. What’s the strangest or most fun family tradition you have?
Mona, her cousins and family friends celebrating the first day of Ramadan.
About eight years ago, my cousins and I started an annual “Cousins Iftar” that we plan every Ramadan. I love when we all get together from Connecticut, Central and South Jersey, because we all have very unique and dynamic personalities, and it’s a lot of fun, alhamdullilah! It truly isn’t the same if someone is missing.
14. Cat person or dog person (or some other kind of animal)?
So, I used to be a die-hard cat person, but my cat passed away about a year and a half ago, and I haven’t been able to look at cats the same way again. I get scared to get attached to one, and have to relive the experience all over again. I would say by far, my favorite animals are horses! They’re such beautiful and majestic animals, masha’Allah, and I love how gorgeous they look in photos!
15. If you were to create a slogan for your life, what would it be and why?
Two things! If you have something nice to say to someone, say it! You never know how it could make their day or boost their self-esteem! :) I always say this because we don’t know what internal struggles everyone goes through, and how they may feel about themselves inside. Even if you don’t know, it will never hurt to give someone a compliment. It can only help! :)
Another quote I love that I often repeat: “We take photos as a return ticket to a moment otherwise gone.”
What people may not know about me is that I have a terrible long-term memory, and I take photos at almost every event and gathering to remember beautiful and fun moments with friends and family. I spend a lot of time looking through old photos, especially on special occasions, birthdays and anniversaries, and enjoy cherishing those memories.