The founder of GreenPush, Alya Annabi shares how she plans to inspire, educate, and engage the next generation of sustainability champions.
We love entrepreneurs and small business owners at Honeycombers, which is why we’ve created Launchpad, a comprehensive digital networking platform (with IRL benefits, too) that encourages connection, business support and community. It’s a privilege and pleasure to learn from so many talented and inspiring folks, so we’ve decided to share the love by interviewing some of the lovely Launchpad members. Looking for inspiration? Check out how the founder of GreenPush, Alya Annabi, gets it done like a boss.
Entrepreneurs we love: Alya Annabi
What is your backstory and why did you decide to launch your business?
I’ve been working hard to raise awareness about sustainability by making small sustainable changes in my own life and sharing my experiences with others. Since I embarked on my green journey, I’ve been taking action to spread knowledge and inspire more individuals to start their own journeys – from organising free workshops and holding sustainability talks to creating a neighbourhood chat group to reduce waste and increase sharing amongst neighbours.
Having worked on this issue for years, I’ve developed the expertise and experience needed to help businesses cultivate more sustainable actions. That’s why I founded GreenPush – to inspire, educate, and engage the next generation of sustainability champions. We are the push you need to make sustainable change.
What has been your biggest challenge so far and how did you overcome it?
My biggest challenge so far has been to choose a direction. As I’m a very ‘action-oriented’ person, when I created GreenPush, I was going all over the place. I wanted to do different things at the same time, all by myself, with no strategy or guidance – just the passion to raise sustainability awareness among people. I was definitely under-prepared.
In July, I joined the ‘We Got This’ sustainability incubator and had the opportunity to be mentored for six months. My mentor challenged me throughout the sessions with some tough questions and helped me choose a clear direction and keep my energy focused.
In October 2022, I took a step back by understanding the challenges companies face when it comes to implementing their sustainability strategy. After a few interviews, I noticed that the biggest challenges were the lack of sustainability education and knowledge, and changing employees’ mindsets and behaviours. That’s where it clicked.
Since I created communities and could see the behaviour change when people are put together and how they can influence each other, I decided to do the same with companies, by helping them create green communities to encourage sustainable behaviours and green actions across team members. I’m committed to the idea that small changes can make a big impact, especially when people are brought together. I’m forever grateful for my mentor as I have a clearer direction and finally feel like I’m climbing the right mountain (thank you again, Angelina!).
How do you stay motivated and energised?
I’m very fortunate to be working in a field where I have a real passion for what I do. As I’m a very extroverted person, I get energised when I interact with others. I’m always on the lookout to meet like-minded people, join communities (thank you, Launchpad!) and go to events. What helps me stay motivated is the feedback I get. Hearing someone say they’ve started composting or donating on OLIO always makes my day! This is what truly drives me: helping people take green steps in their everyday lives.
How do you keep stress levels low?
Good question! Since I spend most of my days in front of my computer, I often feel disconnected from nature. So whenever I can (usually during weekends), I put on my hiking shoes and spend the day in nature. By doing so, I get the opportunity to have a real digital detox by enjoying the sound of nature (like birds and waves) and landscapes. The nature surrounding us is what’s real and worth fighting for.
On a daily basis, I start my day with a 10-minute meditation which helps me breathe and let my ideas flow. I also cook most of my meals which helps me take a break and appreciate the food I am eating. Finally, listening to podcasts or reading books regularly is an activity that not only inspires me but helps me take some “me time” that’s truly valuable!
Favourite places to work?
I don’t need much (apart from my laptop and good WiFi!) but I would say a good chair, good coffee and, most importantly, natural light. My ultimate favourite place in Bali is PUCO Rooftop.
Can you share a work ‘mantra’ that you use?
My personal mantra is “where there’s a will, there’s a way”. I’ve always applied that mantra on so many different occasions, and it works pretty well. When you really want to do something, you can!
One thing you can keep talking about for hours?
I know that sustainability is a wide umbrella, but I can talk for hours about green living and all things linked to sustainability in general. Trust me, I’m really passionate.
Your go-to self-care activity?
When I get some “me-time” I like to make a DIY mask or scrub (using ingredients from my kitchen) and apply that on my hair or face. Love the feeling I get after a homemade treatment!
One piece of advice to your younger self?
Believe in yourself, keep faith that good things are coming your way and don’t forget to listen to your inner self. Life is a journey with so many surprises along the way, so grab every opportunity and keep doing the things you love and feel passionate about!
Get in touch with Alya Annabi online.
Launchpad is a comprehensive digital networking platform (with IRL benefits, too) that encourages connection, business support and community. It is designed to make the entrepreneurial journey not only easier, and more successful, but also a whole lot more fun. We offer almost daily activities for members to connect, along with weekly masterclasses, member networking roulette, small-business mentoring and media profiles on Honeycombers. Check it out and join us!