Tiffany Jade Benn is one of the lucky ones. Living in New York during the 9/11 attack on the US, Tiffany was lucky to walk away unscathed; and although there were times she thought she may not make it out, she says “it was one of the most terrifying moments of my life, but I wouldn’t change a thing”.
“I’m lucky to be alive so I no longer take a single thing for granted. My biggest struggle has been learning how to change my mindset after being in a life and death situation. I was literally terrified of everything. Deep down I knew I had to face up to my fear and get on with it”
Tiffany attributes her resilience and strength to her parents, “I remember as a child being the youngest, everyone did everything for me. Then one day I said to my dad, ‘I can’t do it dad’ and he said ‘Well, your brother can do it so WHY CAN’T YOU!” In that moment I decided I had to take life into my own hands and accept that people aren’t always going to do stuff for me”.
While Tiffany admits she now has a ‘what’s the worse that can happen’ attitude to life, she acknowledges it wasn’t always the case and that confronting her own mortality during the attacks on 9/11 left her with a profound sense of gratefulness for life.
“It took September 11, a few horrible relationships, and a redundancy to bring it out, but I just refused to give up”.
In 2015, after 15 years as a money broker, Tiffany decided to launch her own online home and decor business – HART : LDN. Despite everyone telling her “your crazy”, she thought ‘what’s the worse that could happen’ – something that she now sees as a motto (and the most valuable lesson) of her life.
Thank goodness for her persistence, because it paid off – she’s had some incredible success over the past couple of years – recognised as a finalist in the Startcon Best E-commerce Award and the Australian Small Business Champion Awards, and in 2016 winning Best of Houzz service.
Albeit her success, Tiffany is incredibly humble and continues to see herself as one of the lucky ones.
“I am learning to trust my instincts as I’ve always found them to be right; but I’d be lying if I didn’t say I still second guess myself.
If there’s anything I’ve learnt, it’s that I should say yes to everything that scares me because the more I do it and the more I am challenged, the more I grow and the more amazing things I get to experience”.
Tiffany is the creator and owner of HART : LDN Home Decor an online homewares store specialising in supporting Australian designers. Committed to giving back, Tiffany supports H.E.A.R.T 9/11 – a charity made up of NYPD & NYFD to rebuild the lives of victims of natural and manmade disasters worldwide; and The Freedom Hub – a charity dedicated to rehabilitating the victims of slavery and human trafficking within Australian borders.
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