I’ve spent a lot of time thinking about what led me to start Outwardist…
I’ve always been a fan of looking outward – beyond the mainstream narrative. I like exploring the different ways people do things across the world, fresh ideas and different ways of thinking.
We can learn so much from each other. In fact, if we don’t look outward, beyond the mainstream ‘view’, we may never see that there could be fantastic new possibilities for how we can live. Life is still out there waiting for us to grab it with both hands and enjoy it!
That’s why, especially right now, I want to encourage new ideas for how we move forward. We are a wonderfully diverse species with so much to share with each other.
It feels like I’ve experienced a fair slice of the ups and downs of life – love, loss, divorce, employed, self-employed, losing a previous partner to suicide, watching my parents die at the same time, battles, scars and victories too. I don’t regret any of it. I’m grateful for all the tough challenges in my own life – because of what I’ve learned through them.
They’ve made my life abundantly rich and they’ve made me who I am. They have forced me to live each day more authentically. More me.
The world needs each one of us to be ‘us’ – not someone we think the world wants us to be.
The tough times have also led me to do things I would never otherwise have achieved. In the process I’ve learned that Davids can win against Goliaths, and that if you don’t give up, you can win. Right now I think that’s super important: the future may seem dark for many, but together we can find ways forward – new and better ways than we’ve been following to date.
I speak German and French – and English is my first language. I love languages, not just because they’re fun to learn and good for the brain, but because you gain so many insights into the people who speak them – how they think and the cultures they embody.
I also speak reasonable Spanish and I’m learning Danish, albeit slowly! (I now live in Denmark.)
My professional career has included marketing for an engineering multi-national, copywriting, English language teaching, public speaking and setting up a groundbreaking online information resource about care funding.
I ran a business networking group in the UK for several years, I’m part of a number of global online networks, I’ve built a strong network of friends and contacts across the world, and I understand the value of a supportive community.
We all need each other. We need to understand each other. We won’t find solutions to our biggest problems if we allow divisive narratives to prevail. Conversation is vital: it can change everything.
Not being one to follow the expected path in life, in 2014 I decided to pare my life down to the basics and travel full time (while still working online). I’d always travelled a lot, but I wanted to be nomadic, so I gave away pretty much all my stuff to people who needed it, rented out my house and spent the next four years working from 11 different countries across three continents.
I learned how to live with just a backpack, which taught me just how little we really need day to day. I got to know wonderful and fascinating people who have enriched my life immeasurably. I learned more about the world – and of course about myself. I also did (and still do) a lot of cat sitting – it’s a wonderful way to travel. We can learn so much from animals.
Uncovering the stories about places we wouldn’t normally reach and people we wouldn’t ordinarily meet opens our minds to exciting new possibilities.
In fact, Outwardist originally started as a way of encouraging people to explore more of the world – to go places we wouldn’t normally go and meet people we wouldn’t normally meet. With the current situation in the world, though, I wanted to adapt the overall focus, but keep the deeper thread of learning from each other.
When I’m not working…
You’ll find me taking close-up pictures of insects and flowers, to marvel at the incredible detail all around us. I love cats, wilderness, forests, mountains, big skies and making vegan food.