I have been good most of my life. Always looking to please others. Be liked. I struggled at school, but did OK. And have had a pretty successful career, well, more like three actually! As someone once said, I could be a case study for ‘what colour is your parachute’.
I have worked in corporate human resources.. As a registered nurse in Accident and Emergency and medicine. Now I am a climate justice campaigner, permaculture designer and aspiring social innovator. In my day job I challenge and inspire leaders of companies, large and small, to deliver a just transition to a net zero, resilient world where people and nature thrive. I love to ride my bike, wild swim, practice yoga and am learning to paint. I have my grandma’s old treadle sewing machine that I am building up the confidence to use. I am a voracious bookworm. An obsessive planner, who never quite gets it right. I love people. I love my garden and everyone who lives there. Most of the time, I love life.
I am also nuerodiverse. Which is hard in a straight world. I was diagnosed with ADHD a year or so ago in my 40’s - pretty typical for women. Because we present differently. Chatty. Easily distracted. Day-dreamers. Emotional. Not disruptive like many boys with the same wiring. And as time goes on, you develop work arounds. Strategies. A game face. Cover up that you feel chaotic. Disorganised. Struggle to connect with other people. A bit of a weirdo. Way too much. Or too little. You never know until you cross the line. And impulsive. But high functioning. Successful, despite the odds. Which is exhausting.
Diagnosis helps. Now I see my challenges are because the world isn’t designed for people like me. As Dr Ed Haliwell says, we have Ferrari brains with bicycle brakes! We go all out. Have big vision. Are super productive, but quickly wear ourselves out. Easily distracted and hyper focused. Move between highs and the lows. Rarely in the middle. Are impulsive, often to our detriment. As I was once told, I’m too fast, too creative and too productive for others to keep up. So, it’s lonely and I am never sure if I’m getting things right.
But I also have an amazing imaginative life. Enjoy my own company. Am quick witted. Can see the bigger picture. How to join the dots to bring my visions to life. I am hugely empathic. Have a strong sense of fairness. Become outraged at all I perceive as wrong with the world. And am driven to make positive change. I just struggle to follow through. Break things down into small steps. Pick one thing and focus. And that is often because I want to do it all and I want to do it now. Like a kid in a sweetshop!
So I’m learning to like my real self. Realising I don’t have to contort to fit in with society’s norms. Acknowledging that maybe it’s time that the world flexed a little to help me and others like me flourish. I can’t make that happen, but I can focus on getting things right for me. My perspectives, dreams, ambitions are not wrong. They don’t need to be squashed to make other people feel comfortable. To paraphrase Glennon Doyle - the most important thing is to not disappoint myself to get approval from others.
So here I am again. Website v. god knows what. Building a writing habit. Musing on what living well on the edge of environmental and social collapse looks like. Cultivating a vision of what it means to be a grownup in the 21st Century. Doing my best to live that truth. Becoming braver in what I say. I will share my trials, tribulation, ponderings and successes here. I aim to be regular, but I have ADHD, so forgive me if I am a little inconsistent:)