August 04, 2016


This week’s focus is on Hayley Southwood who is the Founder of Southwood Stores, a beautiful online lifestyle store.

Hayley took her first step into entrepreneurism following the sad loss of her Mum to cancer. In what she describes as a moment of madness, she bought an ice cream van and set up “Mrs Scoops and her Vintage Ice Cream Van”. She fully embraced social media to raise awareness and her business was featured in over 100 publications in 18 months.

Her next step was starting an inspirational blog Breathe Happiness with her friend Shaneen Rosewarne Cox and then eventually founding her website. Since it launched 3 years ago, she has recently moved into a beautiful new showroom. Hayley has also set up Southwood Social Hub to run training and events to offer inspiration and empowerment to other women in business.

We asked her a few questions about her life…

Describe yourself in 3 words? Driven, inspirational and a bit crazy.

What makes you happy? I feel happy when I see my boys making their own choices and being independent. I feel happy when I’m snuggled up on the sofa with my husband and my dog Sid.

Who and what inspires you? I am always inspired by strong women all over the world making a difference. Whether it is a difference to a community, the world or their own family.

How do you personally define success? To me it’s feeling proud of what you’ve achieved in life.

You are obviously very busy, how do you cope and manage to juggle it all? I think I juggle my busy work and personal life because I LOVE what I do. I have learnt to let go of guilt. We cannot be everything to everybody all of the time.

What’s been the best piece of advice you've received along the way? Not to see things going wrong as failures, seeing them as lessons. I do not believe in failing. I also think it’s really important to work with a business coach or mentor.

What’s been your biggest life lesson?
To like myself and to be proud of who I am. To understand that everyone has strengths and weaknesses. I have also learnt to surround myself with strong influential women who elevate me on so many levels.

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