Khaleejigirl (KG) Interviews Mashael Fakhro!
Meet the next Bahraini environmentalist who took her love for nature while she was abroad and now uses it for good use back in her home country! Check out the interview below for more!
KG: Please state your name.
A: My name is Mashael Fakhro.
KG: Can you give KhaleejiGirl more details to your occupation or what you’re trying to accomplish?
A: At heart, I'm an environmentalist with a love for natural and simple living. As I saw how that lifestyle was changing my life, I got into offering workshops, coaching and circles, one of them a women's circle exploring the sacredness of the human experience and the other a nature connection circle based on Bahrain's landscape and seasons.
KG: That’s very interesting Mashael! Why did you choose this as an occupation?
A: I chose these fields because when I first moved back to Bahrain from studying abroad I felt disconnected from nature, community and from my true self. With time, I found that I wanted to share all the practices I've been exploring with others and offer them spaces and support for their own exploration.
KG: Please describe the journey that led you towards being in your current occupation.
A: Though I have an environmental background academically, I explored a traditional work path afterwards. I later realized that I was doing some of that work out of an obligation to serve the environment, as opposed to inspiration to live a rich, rooted, colorful life. I was missing the experiences in nature that got me into the field in the first place, and wanted to be able to have that here and make it accessible to others. A turning point for me was doing a personality test and understanding what type of work I'm drawn to and why, and having a beautiful nature-filled trip complete with simple pleasures. I saw the benefits of that to my physical, mental, emotional and spiritual health and knew that for me, living this way was key to my wellbeing. Months later, the idea of creating a natural lifestyle website came to me and solidified with the help of a friend. From there each step led to the next, from circles, to workshops, to coaching.
KG: Was it an easy journey that led you here?
A: It was challenging to meet my own fears and expand my comfort zone, one step at a time, but the feeling of accomplishment and trying new things I wanted to do was very satisfying. I knew I was moving in the right direction, even if at times I wasn't able to describe my work and ideas to others. When I pursued coaching, it felt like a commitment to being true to myself, because I knew I couldn't help others if I wasn't. Now exploring who I am and what I desire is a way of life, and I feel more comfortable with the unknown because I feel rooted and deeply supported by my own daily routines and simple pleasures.
KG: Was there any person that inspired you or tried to discourage you from your current occupation?
A: I sought out a lot of support from others which helped along the way. During the most difficult phase of change, I was in an online women's circle and felt seen, supported and heard. I found support in coaches and a therapist, in wellbeing courses that offered me a sense of community, and of course with loved ones. Inspiration from people abroad that I felt were being true to themselves helped too, and I had to break through my own belief that being true to myself in this part of the world was more challenging. The more I found safe spaces and community spaces, from yoga to open mics, the more supported I felt, and I feel very grateful for it all.
KG: What advice do you have for a younger KhaleejiGirl who is considering following in your footsteps?
A: To honor their hearts. Just as we would want a beautiful child we see to be true to their heart, we deserve to live that way. By seeking experiences that connect us to ourselves, we slowly give ourselves permission to live that way. We realize some parts were not as scary as we thought, and there's a huge relief in having some of that inner work be behind us. When inner work gets hard, I tell myself 'I have nothing better to do with my time', knowing that it's one of the most valuable things I could be doing for myself and others. The more we surround ourselves by inspiration and experiences that uplift us, the more supported we feel along the way