We were lucky to catch up with Prue Jeffries recently and have shared our conversation below.
Alright, Prue thanks for taking the time to share your stories and insights with us today. We’d love to hear the backstory behind a risk you’ve taken – whether big or small, walk us through what it was like and how it ultimately turned out.
Sometimes just living each day as your authentic self comes with risk and takes courage. Although I was a Professional Surfer – risk, taking is not something I am inclined towards. I am not driven by adrenaline seeking. I am a creative, open and curious person who likes to have the freedom to explore life. Risk can mean different things to different people, and in different contexts. I have never felt a need to push fear away or battle with it or even deny it. I feel fear is a healthy mechanism, and I have always worked to make fear my friend. Acknowledging fear makes someone courageous. Personal growth develops when we dialogue with our fears. What I learned as a Professional Surfer was how to put fear aside, how to regulate myself in the face of it. Or go through the eye of the needle of fear when situations called me to take risks. Most of these risks were around whether my life was in danger in the ocean. Other times it was around social anxiety and having crowds watch me perform. The pressures and lack of confidence in performing and the ramifications of it in my career.
Risk taking – without the need for adrenaline seeking behaviors or just flippant behaviors is an art form. How does one take a risk being fully present with the situation or risk at hand? To take a risk, one has to be comfortable letting go at some level of control. The need to control life around you – creates a lot of fear. Of course, there are times when control is needed. But just that bigger sense of control. Can you plan and intend success, but also live with failure? (if the risk of failure is not life threatening) Can you get back up the next day and learn from a failure – so you can make it a success? Has it made you stronger and wiser?
We had the good fortune of connecting with Prue Jeffries and we’ve shared our conversation below.
Hi Prue, what inspires you?
Inspiration and meaning are interwoven for me. Life – Nature is a gift and I am inspired by this. From my beginnings I have been deeply, even painfully aware of the need to lead a life of meaning. So how do I know something is meaningful for me? Do I feel moved by it? Is the movement of my heart leading me? Do I feel this visceral and cellular humming? These guide me, with a sense of knowing myself, of developing a good relationship with myself, doing my best with the working of self-reflection, and making adjustments when I sense I need to do so in areas. What are my strengths, weaknesses, my tendencies? What can I do well enough? What am I excited to learn or work on, or improve? Where will I need help and support? Can I see myself doing this for many years? Does this improve other people’s lives? Does it call on me to keep evolving and growing? These are personal needs that are important I have interwoven in my life in some way, in a holistic sense. So far this has been by working as a practitioner and educator in the overall field of Health and Wellness.
I am a deeply experiential being, and enjoy working long hours – when I am inspired and fueled by passion and love for what I do. This of course loops back into meaning. I have interests that are sustainable and life-long. I am constantly learning through those interests, always engaged in an education and refinement process. That’s one of many decades now. I am fortunate that this is what I call my “job”. It is artisanal in many ways. It’s being an artisan of life, and supporting in some way other peoples life expressions.
I arrived at a point in my life where my interests and capacities started to converge and crystallize. Nature and sharing nature based practices are foundational. The seeds were planted generations ago. The roots started developing early in my life – and now one could say I am unfolding my personal Arbor Vitae or “Tree of Life”. We all have one, in the larger forest of life. How is each of us unfolding our Arbor Vitae? It’s the curriculum of life. Inspiration is the nectar supporting mine – perhaps others “`life project” also. How do we grow into the very best versions of ourselves? Inspiration, and the places I find it, which means I do look for it each day, somewhere, helps me to have the courage and conviction to stay committed to what life calls forth from me. Even in times of doubt, or despair or upset that I may encounter.
Today we’d like to introduce you to Prue Jeffries.
Alright, so thank you so much for sharing your story and insight with our readers. To kick things off, can you tell us a bit about how you got started?
Water, nature, creativity, wellbeing and travel have been my greatest passions in life. I have been fortunate to be able to combine them all in various ways. In my high school years, I delved deep into poetry, metaphysics, and philosophy. I was happiest in the library reading David Bohm or an Auden poem and looking at an atlas. Reading Krishnamurti at 14 had a significant impact on me. At the same time I was immersed in art and photography, and playing many sports, but one – surfing started to take all my focus. I needed several outlets to balance the artistic, athletic, mental and spiritual dimensions of myself. I found surfing satisfied the artistic, the athletic and the spiritual through communing with nature and the ocean