WYL: Tell us a bit about yourself!
AL: My name is Ashley, and I am cat, macaroon and swimwear fanatic. Basically, I indulge in macaroons a lot, I love cats and I make swimwear for a living. I just moved back to Canada after living in the UK for 8 months, where I was working for an awesome marketing agency. At 21, I am still figuring out life but trying to make it fun in the meantime.
WYL: What is your connection to mental illness?
AL: I have had anxiety all my life, which ties in directly with my (from time to time) poor health. I suffer from a bowel disease, which has a stigma itself. I tend to overthink, and planning a trip, which may seem like fun to some people, is a stressful task for me. Making sure I always have an escape route is essential when you can find yourself in pain at any given moment. Stress also affects me on a daily basis (which I know many entrepreneurs can relate to), and this not only affects my mental health but translates into how my body deals with things and can sometimes trigger what us *bowel diseased* people call ‘flare ups’ - where I don’t leave my house for days at a time. People in my life have adapted to my behaviour when it comes to this, and I am happy to have such understanding people in my life.
WYL: What does your Self Care Sunday look like?
AL: Self Care Sunday is a must. Since launching my own business and taking on freelance projects, most weeks I have to force myself to take a day off and just unplug from the world. They are so important, because I know if you’re anything like me you can find yourself completely drained. My typical self care day consists of (making) my cat cuddle me, lots of tea, and watching Grey’s Anatomy.
WYL: Who inspires you?
AL: There are a lot of people who inspire me, but those who inspire me the most are those with multiple dimensions to them. They are people who reinvent themselves, who see things creatively, and take risks with the big picture in mind. Some of these people are Sophia Amoruso, Rupi Kaur, and my girls Kayley Reed and Allie Beckwith.
WYL: Why is mental health awareness important to you?
AL: Mental health is important to me because I know it matters. Knowing first-hand how important it is to take care of yourself, and watching other friends and family struggle; I know it’s important to face these issues head on. Life is meant to be lived, and people are meant to be accepted, regardless of what they struggle with on a daily basis.
1. Cats or dogs?
I love my dog, but cats are aliens so I choose cats.
2. Fav place in the world?
3. Fav food?
4. Go to clothing item?
A plain white tee