Escape the City: Weekend 1

Inspired by my initial weekend at the Escape The City startup school, and “encouraged” by our erstwhile guides to learn in public, here are my random reflections on starting this journey….

Reflection 1: to succeed you need to go outside your comfort zone. So in that spirit, here is a video of me doing a highly unprepared 60 second pitch…

Subreflection a) to quote my husband, my moving foot is “weirdly mesmeric”. I should probably learn to keep it still. My hands, ditto.

Subreflection b) I have lost my Northern accent completely

Subreflection c) I sound like I know something about what I’m talking about :-)

Subreflection d) I badly need a haircut and to decide if I’m embracing the grombre movement or just keeping on with the hairdye

Subreflection e) If you are tall, never let someone take a video from a lower level than you (I’m looking at you Jonny)

Subreflection f) None of this matters as much as having got this video done and being brave enough to share it

Reflection 2: some things are easier than you think if you give yourself permission, and people can be much kinder than you expect. My evidence for this would be the ease with which I found a stranger to hug and how lovely he was —he majored in entrepreneurship so I missed a trick and could have interviewed him and aced another challenge, but hey ho, next time.

Reflection 3: committing to yourself is hard, but worthwhile. I have been lucky enough to go on various leadership and management courses, am in the middle of a brilliant MBA programme, and I have lost count of the times I have promised mysellf I will carve out time for reflection, I will learn from failures and change my behaviour, etc. All easy to say, but to date I have never done them, or at least not consistently. Already, today, I am acting. This … blog? journal? inane rambling?… is a bit of reflection time. The whiteboard to organize my schedule is on order from Amazon. I have done yoga (for the first time in what seems like weeks). I haven’t had an afternoon nap. And it all feels great.

Reflection 5: understanding your energy sources (and energy sinks) is POWERFUL. I have been buzzing all day today, and it’s because there was so much creativity, energy, passion and quirkiness in the room this weekend. I had lost sight of the fact that I left the corporate world because I couldn’t find this, but also I hadn’t recognized how important it was to me and my personal happiness. So, Tribe, hold me to account and make sure I get to know and value you all, as I plan to do.

That’s enough now Nancy. Shut up.