Five years ago, Saiyyidah Zaidi was living her dream, residing in London and making around $170,000 a year working for the government as a program director, managing upwards of 50 employees and a budget of $750 million.
Since a child, Saiyyidah dreamed of becoming an educated and accomplished hijab-wearing Muslim woman executive. She achieved that goal…and then realized it wasn’t what she really wanted. Between the corporate politics, the, increasingly long work days that kept her away from her family and the constant budgets cuts and threat of unemployment lurking around the corner, the 42 year old decided it was time for a change.
She and her two children lived off their savings for the next six months as she figured out her next steps. She realized her strongest skills were here ability to teach and coach upcoming managers and after months of research and training through online classes, she began coaching others one-on-one and set up a blog, Millionaire Muslimah, where she offers free content, as well as a 12-step guide for women (Muslim women in particular) looking to start their own business.
The 12-week system costs about $2,000 and is one of the biggest factors in Saiyyidah expecting to bring in close to $1 million in revenue by the end of this year. And she has big plans for that money – she plans to use it to fund 10,000 micro-loans to women in developing countries over the next five years.
She and her family currently live in Cairo, Egypt and plan to move to Malaysia in the next few years. With her new found independence and control over her life, Saiyyidah still adamantly claims that the biggest reward she’s gained from this experience is finding more time to spend with her husband, son and daughter.
This article originally appeared on Business Insider.