I recently went on a canoe camping trip on Lake George in the Adirondacks of New York. We watched the sunset over the lake, the moon rise over the mountains, and sat by the camp fire telling stories and grilling local goodies. T’was a blissful night indeed and I fell asleep with my heart full, feeling alive and inspired.
At dawn, nature called and I wandered into the woods away from my sleeping amigos. I dug a hole and pushed my pants down to my ankles. Suddenly I heard some twigs snap in the bushes behind me. I looked over in alarm to find that one of my amigos had followed me…my yellow lab, Paris! She wagged her tail, grinning happily, then proceeded to spin around in a circle a few times, pop a squat right next to me and proceed with her morning business. I rose my eyebrows and thought “why not?”
As we squatted in the woods together, I felt an odd kind of companionship. I’ve squatted in a variety of places, but doing so alongside my pooch was a first. Though we'd taken morning walks together in the woods for years, I'd certainly never joined her at the ground level.
Paris seemed to be noticing the novelty of the moment as well. Her droopy and caring brown eyes observed me curiously and excitedly. She appeared to be saying, “Finally, she's squatting!” Followed by a wag and, “Doesn’t it feel great to squat and let go?” Paris seemed to be cheering me on, chanting “Isn’t life great?”
“Yup.” I giggled, surprised at this unexpected moment. As I watched her instinctively cover her trace with leaves I thought, my dog is simple yet tremendously wise. While Paris was just doing what felt natural she was also offering me a whole new twist on my yoga teacher’s mantra: let that shit go.
Apologies for any grossness factor here, the point that I’m trying to make is that the heart filling inspiration of the evening sunset/campfire/moon rise with amigos, followed by this profoundly simple, yet beautifully natural and uninhibited moment with my pup triggered an ah-ha moment of clarity for me.
Since that trip, I’ve felt a wholehearted desire to embrace what feels natural. What exactly does this mean? For me, it means tuning into my instincts while also going with the natural flow of things. In other words, setting my intention while also embracing the greater unknown--whatever strange or the unusual people, places, experiences and things that I may encounter along the way.That night of camping showed me that life is indeed SO good and I want to stay on that track. I’m living naturally, blazing my own trail, tuning into what makes me come alive.
Thus, my morning business (beyond squatting in the woods) has led me to fuse together to parts of my natural instinct — to be wild AND to be an entrepreneur. To be a “wildpreneur.”
I've been playing with this term for a while but I'm finally ready to shout it from the mountain tops! I've been a wildpreneur for over a decade, but I see now that something had been holding me back from truly owning it. Was I waiting for approval? Afraid of putting a new idea out there and being rejected? Fear of not being perfect? Whatever it was, I’m totally over it! Who cares what everyone else thinks? Squatting with my pup finally allowed me to let go of the status quo.
Now that I’ve finally fully embraced the concept of life as a wildpreneur, I’m stoked!! I'm eager to grow the movement of wildpreneurs. Goodbye 9 – 5, hello flip flops and freedom! Clearly, being an entrepreneur no longer means wearing a business suit to an office. By the way, all of my friends sitting around the campfire with me that night are wildpreneurs as well (they're all living life on their own terms, living wild in whatever way that means for them). Anyone can blaze their own trails, and design our lives without holding back any of the wildness.
So...what do you think? What does natural look like to you? Are you following your instincts? Do you have a wild idea that is simmering inside you? Is it a business idea? Are you holding back? Are you doing what makes you come alive?
Just as many of us don’t chat openly about morning toilet duties, many of us also keep our wild ideas to ourselves. Even those who’ve already embarked on a journey as a wildpreneur may still be holding back. I’m here to reassure you that it’s okay to be different, unconventional, outside the box, whatever you want to call it. In fact, blazing your own trail and being true to yourself is awesome!! As Paris pointed out, "doesn't it feel good to let go?" It's time to let go of what's holding you back and unleash your wild side.
Let’s do it! Wildpreneurship can be as natural and simple as squatting in the woods and I’m here to be your guide. A few quick pointers, a dash of inspiration, plenty of support and you'll be on your way! I’m currently working hard on wildpreneurs.com and I’m eager to be a bizarrely simple, beautifully uninhibited and wonderfully supportive resource for you. Wherever you’re at in your journey—whether your wild idea is still percolating or you’ve been pursuing free-spirited business for decades—you’ve got amigos here.