Mental Health and Wellbeing
I am a founder of 5 purpose-led businesses, winner of the EY Entrepreneur of the Year award, the Queen's Award for Innovation, Lloyds Business awards and most recently invited to join the Society of Leadership Fellows at Windsor Castle, in recognition of my first business Livity, benefitting the lives of young people since 2001, proving the business and social benefits of a purpose-led business that is financially sustainable.
Now, I'm founder of Pjoys inspired by experiencing first hand what it's like to burn out and sink into anxiety and depression.
At the time I was told it was awkward when I talked about my mental health, which was crushing and silencing. But as I began to recover and started feeling brave enough to talk about my experience I realised that if we 'own our awkward' and talk about our feelings it can lead to the warmest and powerful conversations, as well as recovery more quickly. By being honest about who I am I've found my new purpose and passion for this chapter of my life - to make mental health an everyday conversation.
During my recovery, there was a moment when I think I might have reached that special place in the mind where brilliance meets madness, when the pyjamas I often found myself unable to get out of became my inspiration. I wondered, "Could we take the symbolism of 'the PJ day', both good and bad, to help make mental health an everyday conversation?"
We're making the most kind and sustainable PJs, designed by artists, using the PJ as a canvas to create something joyful. Our PJs, packaging, platform and people are the Trojan Horse to deliver messages of hope and help, shine a spotlight and raise money for mental health organisations.
I'm now an Ambassador for MHFA England.