Here at LIVELY, we’re constantly surrounded by swoon-worthy women that are killin’ it in their businesses. We're launching #WomenCrushWednesday to celebrate the boss babes who provide us with a constant flow of inspiration, support, and endless girl-crushes.
Up next, Founder + Editor of Deep Fried Fit, Mai Lyn Ngo
Where is your hometown?
Born and raised in Dallas, TX.
What inspired Deep Fried Fit?
I started Deep Fried Fit 5 years ago. At the time, I was craving a creative outlet. I took a job right after college that just paid the bills, but wasn’t fulfilling. I always loved telling stories and I created the blog as a way to get back into writing. I’ve always loved being active and playing sports as much as I was a huge foodie. Fried chicken was my favorite food and thus, by combining my two favorite things, Deep Fried Fit was born.
What advice would you give on taking risks?
Do it. We are all capable of so much more if we just put ourselves out there. In life, love, work — I never want to regret not taking a chance and just seeing where I end up. It’s definitely scary as hell, but so far so good.
Where do you find your motivation?
Personally, I’m motivated by my need to better myself. I’m my own best project and I love working on myself and seeking ways to grow mentally, physically, and spiritually.
How do you fuel your confidence?
By knowing my value and what I can bring to the table. It definitely took some time for me to learn that I have a lot to offer, because I’ve been busting my butt working on my craft for so long. So I’m confident in my work. In myself, I’ve learned to love myself and try to focus on what I have instead of what I don’t. It’s still something I work on daily.
What was the key to gaining success with your blog?
Being honest and transparent about my opinions and putting the trust of my readers first. I’ve said no more often to brands than I have said yes. If I’m taking on a project, it has to be something I’m truly excited about, otherwise it’s just work. That excitement translates into whatever I am creating. I also want to be a person companies enjoy working with — so I make sure I put 110% in everything I do. I pride myself in delivering my best work. Companies will remember you for being easy to work with and your quality of work. That can turn into lasting working relationships. Networking and relationship building is also key! You never want to burn a bridge.
What’s the best advice you’ve received from a mentor?
If you don’t ask, the answer is always going to be no. Starting off, it’s really scary to ask for anything! Whether it’s to be compensated for a social media campaign or to have a company sponsor an event, or simply asking for a meeting with someone you admire — you just never know! More often than not, the answer is usually a yes.
When do you feel most empowered?
I feel most empowered when I’m grabbing a coffee (or cocktail) with a friend or fellow entrepreneur and we’re just chatting about our ideas, struggles, accomplishments, etc. Finding a community where there are others that I can relate to makes this whole girl boss journey a little less lonely. We all experience the same ups and downs in different ways.
How have you overcome failure in the past?
I take it as a lesson and keep moving forward. I’m constantly making mistakes and failing but that’s just part of the process. There’s no handbook on how to become a successful business owner or blogger. You just have to learn as you go. Everyone makes mistakes, so don’t let it keep you from making progress.
What advice would you give on finding healthy work-life balance?
Learn to say no and say it often. Setting firm boundaries around your time will protect you from getting burned out and keep you more balanced when trying to juggle work, family, friends, and other aspects of your life.
Where is your favorite place to relax in Dallas?
The Katy Trail. I take walks often, put on a playlist (usually it’s one song on repeat) and just zone out. Also, the AT&T Performing Arts Center (Winspear Opera House). I love everything in the Arts District and find myself walking through it just to admire the architecture.
3 fave LIVELY pieces?
Geo lace bralette, Mesh trim bralette in lush life, any of the active/swimwear.