How this Girl Boss became a serial entrepreneur - Zanna Van Dijk Q&A

September 12, 2017

who is zanna van dijk
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Hello Hello you lovely TRIBE. I'm really excited about today's Girl Boss Q&A because this Girl Boss is absolutely killing it at business, life & brunches. I met Zanna through New Horizon Escapes and have been lucky enough to work alongside her 3 times now, so it was only a matter of time before this Blog came to life. Zanna is a MEGA BOSS BABE who is not only killing it on Instagram, but is killing it as an Adidas ambassador and when it comes to brunching. Let's hear it from the awesome Zanna Van Dijk.
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how zanna van disk became big on instagram
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Q - So Zanna, please tell us more about what you do for a living? 
Now I know there are many things to list & we want to hear it all. So go ahead and list every single thing that Zanna Van Dijk does nowadays.
Alrighty then! I am a fitness/travel/wellness blogger. A co-founder of #GirlGains. A co-founder of London Brunch Guide. An author. An adidas global ambassador. A personal trainer. An event host and speaker. An eco-warrior. And a few other bits!
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Q - Have you always been into fitness & did you ever see yourself ending up where you are today?
No, I certainly haven't. I studied for four years to be a speech and language therapist. Fitness was just a passion on the side which I picked up at university, a passion which ended up turning into a career!
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Q - What's your general message to your followers/tribe?
I have a few key messages:
> Find your balance when it comes to fitness and food, moderation not deprivation.
> Self-love. Look after yourself from a place of self-love.
> Be mindful. Take time to be self-aware, reflective and develop a meditation practice is possible.
> Consider the planet. Every choice you make with your diet and lifestyle has an implication for Earth.
> Educate yourself. Never stop learning. 
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Girl Gains
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Q - I know that when it comes to business, you've had about 100 different projects and you probably have 100 lined up in the near future but very briefly, tell us about your most exciting projects to date.
I would say my book was a highlight of my career. It is my pride and joy. I also love being a part of the adidas family and feel honoured to have been signed as their first Uk global ambassador. I am also super passionate about #girlgains as well as my Living Consciously Crew facebook group and community.
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Q - So let's talk social media. How did you build a solid 174k tribe on Instagram? Are there any little secrets we should know about?
Time and consistency. I have been doing this for almost 5 years now! I have no secrets. Just work hard, focus on your content quality, ensure you have a strong message and stick with it! 
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Zanna Van Dijk
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Q - What's your favourite social media platform and why?
Instagram is my favourite. It used to be snapchat. Now, the combination of traditional photo posts with instagram stories means you get a great insight into somebodies life. 
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Q - How does a new bee become the next Zanna Van Dijk?
While I know it's not good to just try & be someone else, it's ok to be inspired by someone and want to make a positive impact on the world. How do you suggest people do that?
I think the main thing is to find your message. Find your passion. Define your brand, your message and your ethos. Stick with that, and then find a way of expressing this which is accessible to the mainstream audience. You need to appeal to a wide selection of people to grow so really sit back and consider your strategy for this. It varies between every single individual. 
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Zanna Van Dijk
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Q - There are literally about 100 questions I want to ask, but I have to keep it to 20. So the next question will be - what's it like working with Adidas & how did you land a contract with them?
It is amazing working with such a global brand. Admittedly it's also a challenge as they are just so huge that it takes time for things to come to fruition. But when they do... it is frickin awesome.
In terms of working together; I actually approached them on email over two years ago asking for a meeting. I then did some free shoots with them to try and build a relationship. From there I started doing paid jobs and developing a closer relationship with the brand. Until eventually 18 months later they offered me a contract. It was a logical next step for us.
People often think they came to me. Nope, I went to them and I worked at it.
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Zanna Van Dijk
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Q - Is there a book number 2 on the cards? 
Not at the moment. I would love to do another one in the future but right now I just need to nail down exactly what I would want it to be. I feel like my brand is transitioning at the moment so once it settles, I will consider book two!
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Q - You're a huge foodie person & constantly blog & vlog about it. Do you see yourself owning a cafe one day?
That is the dream! Maybe like 5-10 years down the line. A vegetarian brunch cafe which has epic coffee and blends it's own nut butter... thats the goal!!! I even have a name for it in my head!
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Zanna Van Dijk
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Q - You're always so full of ideas, where do you find them?
I often get my ideas from questions. I get asked on a daily basis about recommendations, tips and tricks. This sparks ideas in my head. I often think "that doesn't exist... so why don't I do that?". Then its a case of working your arse off to try and make it happen!
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Q - Lately you've been doing a lot of mindfulness and meditation. Tell us more about what that means for you & why it has changed your life?
I have actually been meditating for over a year, I just never spoke about it as I felt that it wasn't relevant to my brand. However, I recently made the conscious decision to discuss it more openly and I am so glad I did. Mindfulness and mediation allow me to live every day to the fullest and to achieve a greater feeling of fulfilment. Plus, it helps me to reduce stress and reconnect with myself, ultimately helping me to become a better human. A more kind and compassionate one I hope!
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Zanna Van Dijk
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Q - Do you do regular monthly events & if so, where can we hear about them?
I always announce my events on my instagram! Just turn on my post notifications to hear them first!
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Q - What projects have you got in the pipeline? I know that mostly you can't really disclose any future projects, but perhaps there's something that you can let us in on? 
One thing I can disclose is that as well as hosting some amazing New Horizon Escapes retreats next year I will also be organising one of my own in the UK! Which I am super excited about. But damn, organising a retreat is stressful hey!?
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Zanna Van Dijk
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Q - What drives you to be successful? 
I think I still have a long way to go until I call myself successful. I have so many goals yet to achieve! But thank you. I guess it is that fact that I have a "why". I am doing this for reasons greater than myself. I am doing it to empower and uplift others, to educate them about balanced lifestyles, and spread awareness about supporting our planet. That's the ultimate motivation.
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Q - You've become very involved with the whole Ecological issue lately & you have a Facebook page called Living Consciously Crew. What are the top things you're currently trying to improve in personal life for a more ethical living?
I am changing so many areas of my life, sometimes it feels overwhelming! The key changes I am spreading awareness of though are:
> Ocean plastic. Reduction of our plastic consumption is absolutely necessary to save the oceans.
> Sustainable eating. We need to reduce our animal product consumption significantly to be able to feed our ever-growing population into the future.
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Zanna Van Dijk
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Q - How do you stay sane when things are pretty insane? Is meditation the answer to everything or are there other things you like doing to switch off & forget about the world?
I definitely find meditation helps me massively, as well as just taking time out for self-care. This could be as simple as cooking myself a wholesome meal or just lying in the bath with a book. I try to spend more time in silence. Away from technology. That gives me headspace I require. 
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Q - Do you think there's still an opportunity for new bees to become successful bloggers? Isn't it just a little too saturated?
There is always more room at the top. Always. You just need to have a clearly defined brand, a strong message and the ability to spread this in an easy to digest way. Work hard, network your arse off and success will come!
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Zanna Van Dijk
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Q - What advice do you have for someone wanting to work & grow within the wellness industry?
The above! Work hard & never give up. Networking is absolutely key. I am a serial networker. I am always trying to make new connections. Events are key. Talk to people. It never ever hurts to be kind and open to anyone you meet, as you never know who they are or how you could help/support one another. 
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Q - Let's say I want to have my own business, but I really have no idea to even start. Where should I be looking & how should I make it happen for myself?
I think a key thing I did was get a mentor. I have had a couple in my time, and they have been absolutely invaluable to my business. Never ever be afraid to ask for advice or assistance. Look to those you admire and ask for a few minutes of their time. They can share with you absolutely awesome nuggets of knowledge.
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Zanna Van Dijk


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