Originally from Wirral, I decided on doing ‘the education thing’ and at 18, moved to Staffordshire to study Product Design. Further down the line, my career focused on the strategy of marketing products rather than designing them and I made my base in Manchester.
I was swept into an exhilarating 15 year whirlwind of hard graft, continuous deadlines and glamorous opportunities. I was in the ‘business bubble’ and had some fantastic, yet challenging times.
Outside of the bubble, seeking pleasures like travel, sport and craft kept me sane. I travelled as soon as I had the funds. The sport morphed into outdoor adventure. And upcycling has been a passion since the year dot, there’s always a project on the go.
When I met Dave with the same thirst for life, we’d squeeze happy times around work, into evenings, weekends and all the holidays we could find. We mountain biked, kayaked, coasteered and body boarded in Wales, trekked through the Sahara, star gazed in Morocco and explored cave houses and the property market in Andalucia.
It took dedication not to fall into the ‘Friday night at the pub’ trap and lazy time on the sofa, and it was SO worth it.
Several times, work and general life as an adult has taken control of our energy levels, mental state and the motivation to eat and move well. Yet stubbornness has saved the day, and we’ve brought ourselves back on track.
We continue to snowboard through Europe and recently backpacked a few thousand miles around Thailand. Locally, we camp, walk, attempt to surf (!) and kayak to beautiful coves. To feed my creative side, I seek one-off workshops to learn new skills, events with inspiring activities and take in all I can about living well.
Work-wise, I realised marketing to ‘plump the bottom line’ left me passionless and that I came alive when supporting socially-driven organisations. I considered how my skills could align with my ethics and provide more meaning in the community.
This is not a ‘look at what we’ve done’ and I’m certainly not a glowing example of expertise in any of the above. It’s more an insight to our mindset and what we feel is important to give us drive and contentment in life. Our work harmonises with our lifestyle and it’s the time out that enables us to keep things sweet. We’re not rich financially, yet we feel we’ve struck gold.
I have seen (and experienced) endless people suffer from ‘not enough time’ syndrome. The pace of modern life, employer expectations, family commitments and financial constraints can dampen our zest for life. We develop habits based on convenience and over time, tell ourselves that the life we live is what has been dealt to us.
Is this true?
Is it really too late?
How do others fit in their ‘happy time’?
As we all know, it’s usually quite the opposite. That person has a constant smile on their face, works full time, juggles three kids, a partner and two dogs, cares for relatives and friends in need, eats well, keeps fit AND has several hobbies. We admire them.
Perhaps you aspire to do just one or two of these things and wonder what their secret is.
There is no magic potion.
Now living on the Pembrokeshire coast, our playground is on the doorstep and we love it. Dave and I co-manage our digital solutions business and like many, strive to find the perfect balance of work and play.
Things don’t always go to plan in our world…yet what I know from experience, is that fresh air, adventure, getting creative, learning new skills, resting your mind, laughing, eating real food and playing more is by far, the best medicine you can take.
And so Life Seeker was born along with the mission; to inspire residents and visitors of West Wales to take time out to play smart and live well.
As far as I’m aware, we only get one run…LET’S DO IT.