By Isobel Van Dyke
oppy Jamie is the mindfulness expert trying to alleviate our anxiety. Her podcast, app and now book, Happy Not Perfect, aims to help to ‘Upgrade Your Mind, Challenge Your Thoughts, and Free Yourself from Anxiety’. Below, she spoke to The Stack about the tricks and techniques that kept her own stress-levels to a minimum whilst running a business.
She let us in on a secret: non-negotiables. Getting to know yourself in order to unlock your non-negotiables and never dwindling from them.
“That was my mistake: thinking that life could wait, it can’t. We are human beings, not human doings”
What does it mean to be your ‘truest self’?
“To be in alignment with your soul. That sounds quite wishy washy and fluffy, but actually the more I have learnt and researched and explored the neuroscience of mental health, the more that the science is in harmony with what used to be understood in a spiritual realm.
When we are doing things that truly bring us joy, our nervous system sings. We are not only our happiest self but our healthiest self too.”
“What you need to make sure of is that your happiness is not attached to or dependent on something happening in the future”
How do we access our truest self?
“You have to take the time to understand yourself to realise what brings you joy. There is a difference between what we think will bring us joy and what actually does. We have to understand the difference between desire and true, soul needs.
There are jobs that naturally elevate our talent, and then there are also jobs that don’t play to our skillset. More access to and understanding of self allows us to thrive at work, without trying to understand ourselves, we are vulnerable to more stress.”
What advice would you give to entrepreneurs reading this who might be feeling anxious about the future of their businesses?
“You have to be constantly connected to self. You have to know when to push down on the accelerator, and when to put the breaks on. But also, life is a dance. Those late nights are inevitable, but you have to remember to compensate for them on the weekend. Our needs are a constant learning process.
Some stress can be a very good thing. Sometimes being uncomfortable at work means it’s your growth stage, you’re more tired because you’re carving out new pathways for yourself.
Investing in workshops such as Access To Self, or coaching, or any sort of personal development is truly the best sort of investment you can make. You’ve got to learn your own language.”
“Investing in workshops such as Access To Self, or coaching, or any sort of personal development is truly the best sort of investment you can make”
What things do you do to compensate for the late nights?
“Dance classes. Dance classes are so much more rejuvenating to me than having a night out, thinking that I’ll just have another glass of wine and it will temporarily make me feel a bit better - dance classes allow more long-term benefits and joy.
What’s so important is understanding your non-negotiables. We cannot expect to work like machines because we are not machines, we have to know our own needs. Everyone’s needs are different, for me, it’s making sure that I start my day at 9am - over 8am - because having that extra hour in the morning to do things for me doesn’t reduce my productivity, and more time doesn’t necessarily mean more work. I’m more interested in what makes me create better quality work.
“More time doesn’t necessarily mean more work. I’m more interested in what makes me create better quality work”
What are your own non-negotiables?
“My own non-negotiables are sleep, dancing, and exercise. I know that an under-slept Poppy is a person much more likely to be irrational. A non-exercised Poppy is much more prone to emotions.
What you need to make sure of is that your happiness is not attached to or dependent on something happening in the future. Stop saying things like ‘when I raise money’, or if you set up a business, don’t let life wait. Your happiness should not be dependent on ‘when I get my first employee, or when I get a boyfriend, etc’, you have to remember to live in the now.
That was my mistake: thinking that life could wait, it can’t. We are human beings, not human doings. We all need practices in our day that take us back to being a human being.”
Wellness expert and creator of the Happy Not Perfect podcast, Poppy Jamie wants to remind us that we are human beings, not human doings
By Isobel Van Dyke
The ‘Pure O’ or ‘purely obsessional’ type of OCD is characterised by distressing, intrusive thoughts and mental rituals to cope with them. Rae Elliman shares her experience of living with – and learning to manage – these hidden compulsions