CEO & Founder, the Generous & the Grateful
Roles in life and work:
I am a Mumma bear to two humans and one fur ball. My humans are Oliver, who is 9 and Hugo who is 7. They are happy, energetic and verbose children. Ralphy is my Groodle, he is 32kg of white curly love that thinks he is a lap dog. I have a very supportive and active in the home husband, Jamie. I am also a sister and daughter.
The thing that drives me most and captivates my mind every moment of the day is my new career with the Generous and Grateful (GG). Our mission is to quickly connect generous Australians donating essential household items with people fleeing danger; so that they may create a safe warm home, from which they can rebuild their lives and have a better future. Basically your furniture or fridge can help a survivor thrive.
What are you juggling right now in your life?
I really feel like there is not enough time for any of us gals!! Being with family you have schedules, expectations, repetition but also so much flux. But in my work life I am constantly working on new things, seeking change, exploring possibilities. I am so deeply involved with this vision and purpose that switching back to the ‘real world’ of school and kid clock, that’s the discomfort for me. All aspects of my life allow me to be deeply connected to humans and making the world a better place, whether that’s helping grow a funny, hilarious, little thoughtful human being myself or helping other people to thrive.
How do you separate work and personal time?
I used to think they had to be blocks and now I think of them as moments and really focus on being present.
There are things that must be done, and there are things that fill me up and give something beautiful to myself and others. I make sure that every morning I sit on my couch with my dog and rub his belly whilst I drink my first cup of tea before anyone is up. That fills us both us up.
My 7-year-old likes a snuggle when he wakes up. That is one of the purest beautiful times of parenting for me. But then there is washing and all that kind of stuff to do.
Even though GG captivates me all the time, it also gives me great flexibility, now our team has grown with so many incredible people, I can work remotely from anywhere. Last week something happened for a dear friend and I was able to jump on a flight. That is important to me, whilst they go through something I can stand by someone I care about and I will figure everything out, work a bit on the weekend and get back on track.
I like to suck as much as I can from the time that I have. My whole life is about pushing boundaries and appreciating everything of value I can from a moment or situation or a relationship. It is give and take, it’s not about needing things from others, but maximising.
What does your support network look like?
Do you mean my bra? as she lifts the girls in support….hee hee….
Most important I would say is that my husband has said – you know what, just go for it. I have not bought in income for two years as I create my own faux masters degree and that is fine because he sees that I am deeply connected to what I do. It’s a legacy for our whole family. So, whilst I am doing that, he is cooking dinner every single night and picking up some of the slack with our children. So as a team WE are contributing. It is rare and I am lucky to have his support.
It’s also about a delicious little group of girlfriends that I don’t need to be anything other than what I am at that moment. I can rock up either wearing my ugg boots or my favourite outfit and lipstick and I will still be welcomed in precisely the same way.
And saving the best till last, there is my partner in purpose, Davida my co-founder. I learn so much from her, and together our capabilities grow and ideas take flight. I really love working alongside her and exploring possibilities with her. Her wisdom, serenity and organisation are a great balance to my zaniness – is that a real word?
What kind of conversations do you have with your inner voice?
I’m now in my late 40s and have just learned to relax and have faith, not necessarily religious faith, but this basic idea that no matter what comes up, while I may not have deep knowledge or experience in everything, I am really resourceful and pretty good at nutting things out and giving them a go, seeing if things work, and if they don’t, I just try something else.
I am just trying to be the best that I can be, not holding myself to anyone else’s standards anymore, which I think many women finally get to at this point in their life. That’s one of the benefits of our mid age, just letting go of all the ‘shoulds’.
If I have a favourite word for the year, I also have a least favourite word, which is definitely ‘should’. Stuff should!! I am so sick of all the things we put on ourselves because we think somebody else requires it. I am trying to ban the word from my vocabulary and encouraging others to do so. Join me!
Do you have any time saving tips for the One P community?
Besides let go of should? Just look at your list if its related to your own values and the way you want to go through the world and the things you want to achieve then work on those first. There are of course some shoulds that make sense like Governance and pap smears, but if it’s for other people and not actually helping you be the best person you can, then you lose a lot of your to do list by getting rid of those items.
When it comes to wardrobe, I like the idea of minimalism, it sounds so nice, but I am absolutely the opposite. I actually love to play with different personas and how I look in different things. I have warehouse Carmen and meeting CEO’s Carmen, standing on a stage presenting Carmen, pitching for funds Carmen and hanging out with friends Carmen. All of them are still questioning fashion shoulds, I think about who I want to be rather than what is required of me, or what everyone else is doing.
What I love about One P is they are timeless classics that feel so great. I love to bring unusual accessories back from travel to accentuate classic garments to make them more me.
A little more about the Generous & the Grateful
Our mission is to connect generous everyday Australians donating essential household items with people fleeing danger; so that they may create a safe warm home, from which they can rebuild their lives and have a better future. We are a transitional support service, so we give upfront help in the form of quality basic essential household goods. They may not have a table to eat at, a fridge to store food in, nor a bed for their child to sleep in. We believe that with a warm safe home base, most anything is possible, and they may regain power in the direction of their life. We partner with caseworker agencies and other NGOs to fill a gap in the web of support services, all the while reducing landfill to boot.
If you would like to support the Generous & the Grateful, you can donate here