Multi-hyphenate vlogger Janina Vela shows us how you can achieve your dreams while you’re still a student in college
Vlogger and social advocate Janina Vela is a force to be reckoned with. At only 23 years old, this Filipino YouTuber, socio-political content creator, speaker, and advocate has accomplished more than a lot of people who are older than her. With a successful YouTube channel boasting over 700 thousand subscribers, as well as a thriving business, Janina is proving that age is just a number when it comes to achieving your dreams. And in a world where young women are often underestimated and undervalued, Janina is breaking down barriers and showing us all what it truly means to be a boss.
It may be a lot to juggle for many, but she does it with grace and ease. In an exclusive interview with MEGAStyle where Janina was wearing the shade Whisper from YOU Beauty’s Rouge Matte Lipstick line, Janina shares her thoughts on how she manages to do it all.
When asked about what it’s like being a working student while pursuing a career in entertainment and spearheading advocacies, Janina replied, “I get this question a lot, and people always ask me, ‘How do you do it?’ And I never know how to reply because it just feels like breathing to me and not because I can’t live without it now, but because I have reached a point in my life where I know I’m exactly where I’m meant to be.”
Her response speaks to the importance of finding purpose and meaning in one’s pursuits. When we are passionate about what we do, it doesn’t feel like work. We are energized by the work we do and feel fulfilled by our accomplishments. Janina is driven by her desire to make a positive impact on the world through her content, social work, and volunteerism.
Janina went on to say, “And when I stop [striving] to be someone I’m not meant to be in this current season of my life, I can thrive in who I’m meant to be right now. And so, breaking it down, being a student, I can breathe in the knowledge, breathe in my education, breathe in the insights from my peers, from my authorities. I can breathe in the love, the empathy, the kindness from the Filipinos that I serve, from other advocates that I cross paths with. And then I can breathe out that same love, empathy, and kindness in my content, in my social work, in my volunteerism.”
Janina’s mindset highlights the importance of balance. She understands that she cannot give to others if she is not taking care of herself first. By taking the time to breathe in knowledge, insights, and love, she is able to give back to others through her work. It’s a cycle of giving and receiving that keeps her motivated and inspired.
We also wondered if there were moments when she considered taking a break from school to focus on her work, and Janina admits that she did at one point. She was so focused on content creation that she didn’t see the value of education. However, she soon realized that education is not just about academic achievement, but it also contributes to her character development.
She said, “Everything changed when I really saw the value of education. I saw the value of the discipline of education. I saw the value of being stuck to focus on working on my weaknesses, to be stuck working with people I don’t want to work with. But to be forced to grow as a human being is something that school just creates an environment for, and there’s truly no other.”
While it may seem counterintuitive, Janina also shared that taking breaks throughout the workday helps in boosting her productivity, creativity, and overall wellbeing. By allowing herself to step away from her work and recharge, she can return to all her tasks with renewed energy and focus. Whether it’s a short walk outside, a meditation session, or a quick chat with a colleague, there are many ways to take a break that can be both enjoyable and beneficial.
Janina’s response sheds light on the importance of education beyond the classroom. It’s not just about memorizing facts and figures, but it’s also about learning how to interact with others, how to work on weaknesses, and how to grow as a person—all while making sure she takes a break every now and then.
Finally, we were also curious to find out how one can stay grounded while working as a student, and Janina talked about the importance of surrounding herself with people who treat her as Janina first and not just as a working student. She explained, “I think it begins with knowing that before I’m a working student, I am just Janina. And that means identifying with who I am more than what I do, and surrounding myself with people who treat me like that.”
Janina’s journey to becoming a successful young woman has been a testament to the power of hard work, dedication, and perseverance. Through her experiences, she has demonstrated that success is not always easy, but it is always possible. She has shown that with a clear vision, strong work ethic, and unwavering commitment, anyone can achieve their dreams and make a positive impact on the world.
Perhaps the most inspiring aspect of Janina’s story is her passion for using her art as a means of connecting with others and spreading messages of love, hope, and positivity. In a world that can often be dark and challenging, Janina’s artwork serves as a beacon of light, reminding us of the beauty and goodness that exists in the world.
Let Janina’s story serve as a source of inspiration and motivation. Remember that success is not a destination, but a journey, and that the most important thing is to stay true to yourself and your passions, no matter what obstacles may arise.
Photography KIERAN PUNAY
Creative Direction NICOLE ALMERO
Art Direction BRIE VENTURA, assisted by MOIRA MANILAO
Fashion Direction and Styling MIKA REYES assisted by FRAN BELTRAN
Beauty Direction MARA GO
Makeup BELLE LOPEZ
Hair LORENZ AUTOR
Sittings Editor PEACHES GARCIA
Producers MEGA DIGITAL (CARYLL CABUHAT, JEMIMA CRUZ, CHLARINE GIANAN, MARA GO, and MIKA REYES)
Video Production AUDREY SISON
Videography JR RAMIREZ
Shoot Coordination KZ FRANCISCO