I had the pleasure of interviewing Galina Antonova! She is an actress, fashion editor and a creator of the successful “BrainsandBeauty” podcast! Galina also holds a B. A. in finance and one of the very few women Angel Investors who invest in early stage startups!
Thank you so much for doing this with us! Can you tell us the story of how you grew up and how you got to where you are now?
I grew up in Moscow, Russia in the 1990s, which at the time was very tough and challenging because of the collapse of the Soviet Union. My journey really began about 19 years ago when I first immigrated to the US. When I first moved to the US, I worked very hard; I had two jobs as a waitress and at the same time I was putting myself through college and getting my degree in finance. When I finally graduated with my degree in 2009, the global economy was in the recession so I was not able to find a job in my field and for two years I had to continue working as a waitress to make the ends meet, which was disappointing after all the hard work I put in to get my education. About eight years ago, I finally moved to Los Angeles, the city of dreamers, where I started to feel unapologetic about pursuing my own dreams. Again, I worked hard, stayed focused and disciplined and went for it. I signed up for acting classes and started to develop my social media presence. So over the years, I have added several movies to my resume on IMDB and this year in my new role as a Fashion Editor I made an effort to attend the Big Four Fashion Weeks 2020 in February in NY, London, Milan and Paris right before national lockdown. I also started my podcast “BrainsandBeauty” where I interview outstanding women and they get to share their story to inspire others. My story does not end there, I am also one of the very few women who invest in startups! I am an angel investor so I fully utilize my degree in Finance. At last, I am currently working on another big project which for now is a secret but I am very excited about it!
Was there a particular trigger point that made you emigrate to the US?
It’s ironic but I didn’t really want to immigrate to the USA, it was actually my mom’s idea, she brought me and my brother both to the USA 19 years ago. But when I got to the USA I felt free and limitless, I felt I could do anything, it’s hard to explain why. But ever since I came to the USA I never wanted to move back to Russia! The USA makes you feel like anything is possible and you can make all your dreams come true if you are willing to work for it!
What can you tell other people who want to immigrate to the USA and live the American Dream?
Prepare to work very hard and the reward will come! Focus on being the best at what you do, save money and invest in your long term future such as real estate and stock market. Make sure you constantly educate yourself and grow!
Was there anything you wish you did differently?
Sometimes I wish I moved to Los Angeles in my early 20’s to pursue my dreams in acting and modeling sooner. But I think everything worked out for the best, I am happy to be in both the investment and the entertainment industry.
Would you say you work more or less now after living in the USA for 19 years?
I would say, I work about the same amount but because I work for myself a lot of times it does not feel like work. Also, because I enjoy everything I do, it makes it much more pleasant, even if I do need to put in a 10- 12 hour day sometimes. So all these years of experience helped me to set up my life in a way that I have more control of what I do, when I do it and how I do it. Also, I am able to take vacation anytime on my own terms, that’s the beauty of being your own boss.
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