top of page

Episode 109: Permission to Dream with Justine Mulliez of Just A Wild Thought

This week we're joined by Justine Mulliez, life and small business coach and founder of Just A Wild Thought. Justine shares her coaching style, her journey to a career change, the struggles she often sees creatives face, and her entrepreneurial hunger. This is a jam-packed episode about leveling up yourself!

Follow Justine:

Follow us: @wheeliecreative

Don't forget to subscribe wherever you listen so you don't miss our new episodes every Thursday (and the occasional minisode). Please leave us an iTunes review to let us know what you think about the show!


Episode Transcript

Iris: Hello, welcome to another episode of Outside by Design. Thank you so much for joining us today for the show. This is Iris, I'm on the creative team here at WHEELIE and I am so excited today to introduce our guest. Her name is Justine Mulliez. She is a life and small business coach, particularly coaching creators in the outdoor industry and helping them get over limiting beliefs and live authentically and boldly in their business.

Justine is a fascinating person. She used to work in active sports in Europe planning events. And she talked about her process where she realized that wasn't the right place for her and becoming a coach. She shares about leadership, her style of coaching, how our individual realities influence our choices and the voices in the back of our heads that try to keep us from doing what we want to do.

This is a really motivating episode, a wonderful representation of someone talking about level one, leveling up yourself, and I can't wait for you to listen.

Lisa: Cool, Justine. Thank you so much for being here today.

Justine: Thank you so much for having me. I'm stoked.

Lisa: The first question we ask every single guest to kind of set the scene is where are you and what are you looking at?

Justine: Yes, I am in my office, in my house in Bend, Oregon. I'm facing my wall and I have like post-its of my entire business plan up on there. So that's what I'm looking at, with like my split board gear. Trying to look organized. Yeah. I really should have cleaned my office before this call to like, say something a bit better than that.

Lisa: Life's pretty messy. Business is messy. And I guess, you know, podcasts can be pretty messy too, though.

Justine: Yeah, totally. And you know, to be fair, I could... I could have lied. Maybe I should have lied.

Lisa: That's true. It's true. My dog, um, just had stitches recently and he has, he has a huge cone on his head. Sometimes he tries to scratch it. So we might, we might hear that. But he's sleeping right now, so.

Justine: Oh, I hope he's all right.

Lisa: He got hit by a ski.

Justine: No. Oh, sharp edges. Those skis have.

Lisa: Yeah. Curious though, you and I have never met and you are on our podcast because someone nominated you. Did you ever find out who nominated you?

Justine: Yeah, so I was nominated by photographer and artist, Katie Cooney. She's based in the Tetons does amazing work out there. And I guess some of the stuff that we've done in working in the community had inspired her to nominate me, which is amazing. I'm super, super stoked.

Lisa: Yeah, I love Katie. We got to get her on the podcast.

Justine: Yes, please. I think she'd be such a... such a great person to have on, especially in terms of talking about freelancing, going out on your own, and balancing the creative piece with the business piece, I think should be such a great person to have.

Lisa: Awesome. I'm curious, I've been on your website. I've been really enjoying your website and all the content writing on your website. But just, yeah, in your words, what is your story?

Justine: Yeah. So I am a certified professional co-active coach and I do life and small business coaching. I was a freelancer for about seven years. I worked in the events and media production side of the action sports industry. I was based in Europe for seven years. And found my way to coaching mostly because I had what Brene Brown would call, you know, a spiritual awakening or a breakdown. [laughs] I just wasn't loving, you know, life. Like a lot of people were like, “Oh my God, you have the dream job. You're on all these big skiing and snowboarding events in Europe and X games and all of this.” And I just kind of looked at my life and was like, wow, like, yeah, I should be happy. And yet I'm not. And I don't really get why.

So I decided to reach out to a coach. And within three sessions, I knew, you know, why I was leaving my job. And I knew that coaching was what I had been looking for. And so now I coach freelancers and small business owners and creatives, especially in the outdoors industry, kind of maneuver that whole challenge of, you know, being a creative who runs a business.

Lisa: What, if you don't mind me asking, what... I get the case of the shoulds all the time. So I'm curious sort of how did that play out for you? And when you were saying “I should be happy,” kind of what, what was your journey like?

Justine: Yeah. I mean, I have always been a very hungry person. And I kind of take it back to, you know, I was raised by a very feminine French mother who had a very specific idea of what girls should be like. And then a father who I think secretly wished I had been a boy. And I found myself ping-ponging between those two expectations and I went really hard into kind of this masculine energy of like achieving. And I was always really passionate about the snowboarding industry. And I knew that if I was going to work in the snowboarding industry, I wanted to be the best or be known for something.

And so I was like, okay, I'm going to work for the X Games. And, and then I'm going to be an entrepreneur like my dad. And I didn't know that, I didn't realize that that was my driving force. I kind of just thought that like, that's just what I wanted. And then I kind of, you know, woke up after a few years being like, Oh, there was a lot of ups and downs that come with freelancing. Maybe that's not the best fit for me. You know, I'm in a male dominated industry and I'm having to kind of show up in this way that doesn't let me have any softness. And I don't know if that's who I want to be.” And I kind of came to terms with like, some of the values I really wanted to honor, like impact and connection and generosity - I wasn't really getting to do that in the sphere of marketing or the sphere of events that I was in. And it was kind of just like this long, winding road, only to realize like, yeah, this is, you know, a lot of people's dream job. And it was mine at age 22 and at age 28, it's not any longer. And like, how do I shed that skin? How do I get rid of those expectations that I had set for myself?

Lisa: I know what you are talking about.

Justine: [laughs] I bet you do. Yeah. I mean, you guys building WHEELIE the way that you have in this industry. Like I, yeah, I hear that.

Lisa: Absolutely. And yeah, I started this agency when I was 22 and I'm 33 now and definitely not the same person. And I don't connect with a lot of the really, really powerful brand that has been created. It's something that's just also very different from me as a person. And being able to separate myself from my business has been a really important process. So I certainly identify with that. And also like working in the snowboard industry specifically is kind of like a prove it or lose it type of scenario, which can't always be sustainable.

Justine: Yeah. And I really found myself... I think there was an article in Outside Magazine a few years ago that was talking about a female raft guide who had this realization that she was actually worse than the men in her own industry, because she was a gatekeeper. And I think it kind of hit me at one point as I was bringing, you know, interns in and I was growing quite a bit. So I was bringing in other contractors under me. And I realized, like, am I potentially making it... not worse for other women, but like, what is my responsibility as a woman in this industry? Am I making it a safe place to bring women in, to help them navigate, you know, this industry? And I was, you know, living in France, especially, like the harassment situation is a bit different. The culture is incredibly macho. And yeah, I really had to think about, what is my role here and how am I helping shape this industry as well, so that it is more welcoming for other women.

Lisa: So, did it all happen for you in like a giant moment where you were like, “fuck this, I'm out”. Or was it this slow process where like something just felt wrong or kind of, what did that actual decision making process look like for you?

Justine: Yeah, I'd say it was pretty gradual. I think there comes a point when you realize that things just aren't changing. And I think that was one of the first walls I hit like, “Oh, wait a minute.” You know, I've been at this for five years and I'm still fighting for scraps and, and I've turned into the person that demands to be heard at the table.

And, you know, I'm reacting in a way that when someone steals my idea, I just can't keep quiet anymore. And it just kind of started taking a toll. And then I'd say the catalyst was probably a few different things happened at the same time, my relationship fell apart. I moved to a different- I moved to Austria. I just kept... it's like one of those things where you find yourself making just the same mistakes constantly. And I think I woke up one day being like, “what is the lesson I need to learn? What haven't I learned yet to get out of here, like what is, what is happening?” And so it was, it was kind of a mixture of like gradual, and then this catalyst that came to a head where I was like, “Oh, something has to change because it's not going to change for me.”

And I was almost in a golden handcuffs situation where I'd finally established a reputation. I was becoming a go-to person for a lot of folks. I, you know, I was finally relishing in the quote unquote success that I'd built for myself. And then I had to very consciously decide to leave. And I think that was probably the hardest part was like, coming to terms with, “Hey, yes, I have built this little empire for myself and it's still okay to walk away from it.”

Lisa: That's super interesting. How did you... yeah, how did you decide that walking away was going to open up more opportunities or like, I guess what was your hope when you walked away?

Justine: I think - I don't - you know, one of the ways that I kind of pictured was like, you know, when you're doing the monkey bars, you have to let go of one thing as you're grabbing the other. And once I found coaching, because I was working with a coach you know, I was like, I don't need a therapist at this very second on this particular matter, but I need to work with somebody who gives me the space to explore that and who can create a container where there are no expectations.

And I felt so transformed. It sounds really corny, but I felt so changed in the very short amount of time I'd been working with my coach. I worked with her for three sessions up until that point. And it just like... I felt like I had shed so much of the baggage, so much of the expectation, so much of the heaviness that it wasn't even a question of hope. It was just like the fog had lifted. And I realized like, “Oh, I don't want to climb that mountain anymore. And I know exactly what mountain I want to climb and I'm actually already on the right path.” So it was almost like just this intuitive sense of knowing that I don't know if I've... I hadn't felt that in a really long time.

So it just felt like it wasn't even a question of hope. It was just like, duh. It was, it was a “duh” moment, like an internal knowing, this is exactly how we're going to move forward.

Lisa: Nice. Some of that intuition that is a value. Yeah. So now you're a coach. What are some themes that you see in your work, specifically in the outdoor industry or if you're working with other like-minded similar humans, kind of, what are some themes that our listeners will probably identify with as well?

Justine: Yeah. I mean, partly why it's so easy for me to stay close to home in the outdoors industry is because I love working with people who are adventurous, who are creative, who are ballsy, who are vulnerable, who are looking for connection, who want to be connected to people and nature and their passion. Like there's just so much vitality and a liveliness that comes with people that are in and out of this industry, mostly because we're drawn to a lot of similar themes. And the other piece is really like the willingness to grow. I think a lot of us, you know, associate growth with some of our outdoor pursuits and some of our love and our passion for the natural world and the sports that we do and the way that we express ourselves. So I'd say for me, that feels like the very common thread, is like, just that adventurous spirit and how it shows up and manifests for people.

But in terms of the themes that I work with with a lot of my clients, like, man, imposter syndrome, obviously one of the big ones. Giving yourself permission to even dream, giving yourself permission to want something. You know, dealing with the ins and outs of, you know, trial and error and success and failure. Or the relationship to our craft and our creativity and needing to rely on it. Like the business side of it, how intimidating it can be for folks like, you know, wanting to leave a full-time job to break out on their own.

I mean, I'd say the biggest portions of the work that I do with clients is like really perspective and mindset and choice and figuring out how to honor yourself in who you show up as in the day to day and then also in what you do. So yeah, I feel like those are very common themes.

And then obviously you get to the nitty gritty. How do I find clients? How do I make a living? How do I balance the different parts of my life? And that, which I feel like you all probably do quite a bit of in terms of working with, you know, your VPs of marketing, and I'm thinking about your, like your leveling up, you know, part one is focusing on you.

Lisa: Mhmm. Yeah. One really interesting commonality that we see across the outdoor industry specifically is that... it's full of amazing human beings that get promoted and maybe don't have access to leadership training. And that's a very, very common story. So I think our audience will be really interested in any types of like, leadership tips that you're willing to share or ways that people can kind of bring... I don't know, maybe that outdoor mindset into their business selves or… yeah. Kind of, what comes up for you when you think about that?

Justine: Yeah. I mean, that's a great point and gosh, don't we know too many people who wake up one day in leadership being like, I don't even know myself. How did I get here? But, it kind of makes me think of… so in the co-active training model, which is the model that I was trained under, we have a tool called allies. So it's really developing various parts of yourself that show up naturally and really being intentional about it.

So for example, as you were pointing out, like, can we bring more of the spirit of who you are out in nature into our business? And that's actually something that I do a lot of with my clients, you know? For me, it's, you're working with a leader who maybe feels a little disconnected from their team, who's not a great communicator. Well, what about the part of them that's a really good trip planner. You know, what about the part of them who is a really good risk assessor and a great backcountry ski partner who can examine risk and bring people into the conversation and create this space of openness and communication and, you know, really get into the nitty gritty of how people are doing and feeling and, and making, you know, being conscious of the group dynamic. That's a incredible ally. That's an incredible part of yourself to have. And can you not simply choose to bring that into your leadership style? And you know, if you're like, man, we're not getting where we need to get to. It's like, okay, well, what about my back country partner self? Like how would they interact and utilize this space to create a container for better communication for understanding what our outcomes are for knowing how we're going to get there. If that makes sense.

Lisa: I think that's amazing. And I keep hearing you say the term co-active coach. What, what is a co-active coach?

Justine: Yeah. So co-active is just a coaching training, like a philosophy. It's kind of, I think it's one of the oldest in the quote unquote coaching profession, a lot of the founders are also part of the International Coaching Federation. So it's really just like a training philosophy and coaching school. But the co-active model is really based on the “co” which is all about collaboration and the being, and then the “active” which is really about the doing and really the co-creation of the being and the doing in a person. And really honoring both.

‘Cause I think we tend to live in a society that's very doing-oriented, you know, we measure accomplishments by the actions taken. And it's really also about leaning into the being like who you are as a person and how you show up in the world. So that's kind of like the way that the framework ties in the whole person, as opposed to just focusing on one piece of it.

Lisa: Yeah. Oh, I love that. That is amazing.

Justine: Yeah. When I switched into coaching, my coach was a Co-active Training Institute coach, and it just like never occurred to me to look for anything else. I was just like, no, this is, this is my language. These are my people. Yeah, I really thoroughly enjoyed the model and certification and seeing that applied because a lot of our clients, especially driven, hungry individuals starting businesses, we tend to forget who we are as people, which is the biggest reason why a lot of us are starting these businesses. Like, if we forget the original vision, which is enabling us to live our lives, as we are, as authentic human beings, then we kind of just get stuck in the same trap as everybody else, just like in the slog.

Lisa: Mhmm. Yeah. I recently picked up a book that I'm obsessed with right now and it's called Proposals for the Feminine Economy.

Justine: Ooh. I need to write that one down.

Lisa: Yeah, it's blowing my mind. But in it, it kind of talks about how capitalism, like we sacrifice our bodies for capitalism. And that sort of stuck with me because like, COVID, it's like, okay, well, if someone asks me for a meeting at a coffee shop and I know it's an important client or something, do I agree to it? Even though I know that with COVID, I don't want to go to a coffee shop right now. You know, and so kind of like, where do we sacrifice who we are with our bodies in business? And I find that to be a fascinating thing to kind of like mull over and kick around as I navigate my business. Has that come up for you before?

Justine: I mean, I think that's so interesting. It's like something’s in the universe. I've been thinking a lot about that in terms of a lot of, you know, outdoor work jobs are very physical. They're physically demanding. And I've worked with a few folks whose injuries have brought their work to a screeching halt, they’re outdoor instructors or facilitators.

And it just makes me think of like, what sacrifices do we also need to make to be a part of the outdoor industry? You know, physically, what does that look like? And then it kind of brings me into this other thing that I've been thinking about a lot, which is like the exploitiveness of freelance work at times and contract work at times. And like, what is our responsibility to the people that we bring on in terms of not being an exploitive business owner? So yeah, I'm right there with you and kind of like thinking, like, what are the sacrifices both, you know, or physically, emotionally, intellect- I don't know what are the sacrifices that we have to make to function as people with income?

Lisa: Right? And kind of like identifying... I think capitalism is a spectrum kind of where you land on it as a business owner and how you choose to run your business and how you show up is an idea that I've been kind of playing with a lot lately. And I think it is interesting for the outdoor industry specifically because there are so many parallels to the sports that we love.

Justine: Yeah. I mean, I have a friend she's a physical therapist and had to leave physical therapy simply because she could no longer climb or ski. She was worried that her physical… if she was to injure herself, that would be her livelihood. And so she had to figure out like that was really putting at odds, a job that she had done, that she had trained for for a long time, so that she could use her body only to realize that it actually stopped her from living the life that would also enable her to use her body. So it was a really interesting tension there.

Lisa: Oh, yeah. I always joke with our designers, if they crash their mountain bike, just like not their mouse hand. Like stick your mouse hand out.

Justine: [laughs] That's so valid. Oh my gosh. Oh man.

Lisa: So I'm curious how this coaching work has kind of changed your outlook on life.

Justine: Oh, I mean a hundred- like entirely. It's entirely changed everything for me. I think probably one of the strongest, one of the biggest breakthroughs that I had through, you know, my training, was the power of perspective. You know, we spend a three-day workshop solely focusing on perspective. And it's called balance coaching. And you're playing, you're basically playing with perspective. And for me, the reality that hit me was, “Oh, my reality is just a question of perspective, which is a concept that you understand, but when you're forced to play with totally different perspectives, influenced by like, one might be your favorite landscape, one might be a color, One might be a book. And then you approach a topic from that perspective, just seeing what decisions you're able to make from that point of view was for me, just like, totally just like shifted everything because it gave me agency in a way that I didn't feel like I had up until then. I just kind of thought, well, reality is reality. And now I'm more like, “Oh, well this reality gives me these choices. What other choices do I want to have? And therefore, what perspective do I need to have in order to have them?” If that makes sense.

Lisa: Definitely, definitely. How cool is that, that you kind of used play and nature as a catalyst for that shift?

Justine: Yeah, absolutely. I mean, and I bring a lot of nature into my coaching. I mean, it's a language that a lot of my clients and I speak. So, you know, we're, you know, we're talking about a problem from the point of view of a river. Like where are we in the river bed right now? Are we in the eddy? Are we in the flow? Like, are we on a rock? What does that river look like from the mountain? And you know, what choices do we have before the mountain and not the river? So that's, that's always so much fun to be able to use that language with clients, for sure.

Lisa: Mm. I love that. I love that. That's poetic. Question for you around social media. I read an article on your website about the use of social media. So yeah, if you want to share that for the listeners, our listeners about using Instagram as a tool for good, rather than something limiting.

Justine: Yeah. Yeah, totally. And this is something that's like... I mean, and I'm, I'm just so honored because my clients are just, the raddest people and the conversations and the inspiration that comes out of that. And this was a conversation that we had in one of my group coaching groups. It's a group of freelance or small business owners, all women, this one specifically. I run another one that's mixed, but. We got on the subject of what was getting in the way. And so what is an obstacle that we're all facing right now?

And what we noticed was just like, for most of the participants, it was social media. It was, “I can't do this idea for my business because it's not coherent on Instagram” or “I can't present this part of myself because it's not coherent.” And this word was just like coherent, coherent, coherent. And I was like, “you guys, like. Isn't Instagram supposed to be a tool? Isn't it just supposed to be a means to an end, a piece of the thing that allows us to communicate?” And instead it was running the show, it was like this teeny tiny.... it was almost just like realizing that we were talking about the cup of water instead of talking about the waterfall. And it just felt so backwards that we all just kind of forced ourselves to address it. And all of us challenged ourselves to post something that is not coherent, that is not, you know, “with” our messaging. That is not restrictive.

And I think it felt really liberating for all of us because it made us realize that, you know, the inner critics - or in our coaching model, what we call saboteurs - they live on social media. And it can be really daunting to keep exposing yourself and showing genuine vulnerability on a platform that actually is supposed to be a means to an end, simply a tool, not your entire business. So that was a really, and that's still something that I think about quite often, but that was definitely like an impactful moment for everybody to be like, wait, we run the show! Not this little thing on our phones and not that even the people who like it, or don't, we run the show. This is our business. This is our life.

Lisa: I heard you mentioned the word saboteurs, do you want to kind of expand on that because that's fun.

Justine: Yeah, totally. So saboteurs comes from the word in French saboter, which is somebody who used to use their clogs to try to like stop the industrial revolution in the fields in France at the time. So that's where the word comes from. But a saboteur is someone that sabotages us. And so very similarly to how, like, people like Julia Cameron in The Artist's Way talk about saboteurs or Steven Pressfield talks about them as the resistance. It's the part of us that does not want us to succeed, but is trying to keep us small, trying to keep us safe, trying to keep us, for the most part, like unfulfilled. Not because they're evil, but because they're trying to protect us.

And so there's a few different ways of interacting with saboteurs and they show up differently. You know, some people who are procrastinators, maybe one of their saboteurs is the avoider. And like, “Oh, we're just not going to worry about it until we're forced to.” Or maybe for someone it's the overachiever. It's, “I'm not even going to try if I don't know if I can succeed.” So it's, it's some of these like inner critics or underlying beliefs that we have that tend to stop us from taking a risk or stepping forward.

You know, in sports or in the outdoors, it might be the voice that's trying to dissuade you from dropping into something that's scary. Or actually the other voice that tells you that you're going to be seen as a wimp if you don't drop into something that's scary. So it's kind of the dialogue that a lot of us have with our inner critics, really. So that's kind of, that's the long version of what saboteurs are.

Lisa: Mhmm. And how did those show up in the workplace for people?

Justine: Oh man.

Lisa: Or creatives, we have a lot of creatives that listen to this podcast. So how does, how does that show up in the creative workplace especially?

Justine: I mean, woof. Like, for me, it's... I do not know a creative who does not rumble with their saboteurs whether it's forcing yourself to start and procrastinating, for example. So the avoider again is basically finding anything else to do besides the work. Or maybe it's the restless saboteur, so the part of you that can't focus on anything at a given time. So you just keep getting scattered because you don't actually want to dive in and be focused on what you're doing.

The overachiever is a big one. It's the part of us that will not start a painting or a project or a design simply because we don't know how it's gonna work out. I mean, woof. And this is what I love about creatives. It’'s the bravery that we have to engage with every day to create, and the permission that we have to give ourselves to potentially not have our ideas pan out and simply just getting to do the work anyway.

So, man, that's yeah. Creatives, like it's a rumble, it's a daily rumble. I mean, how is it for you as a designer? Do you find that you interact regularly with the part of you that might be like, “Ooh, we're scared.”

Lisa: Oh, yeah. I mean, I don't get to design very much anymore, but I am, you know, I have, I have all those things that you've mentioned pretty much every day. So, just classic, classic creators over here, but.

Justine: Right.

Lisa: Yeah, absolutely. And, and also recognizing that as a... recognizing those things existing in our team dynamics is really important and kind of acknowledging those things. And, um, befriending them, I think is important. But yeah, it's definitely an ongoing journey. I believe.

Justine: Yeah. And then in the business piece, I'd say the hardest part is pitching clients. It's putting your work out there. It's the part of ourselves that not only has to create that on that blank piece of paper, but that has to say, “Hey, I created something. What do you think?” So it's the repeated exposure that brings about constant saboteurs in terms of justifying, like, giving a rate, like my work is worth, this, pay me this much, please. Or even pitching a new client saying, “Hey, I would like to do work for you. This is what I'm capable of.” And having the potential of being rejected. I mean, I for me, I feel like that's the key part of, you know, creatives or small businesses or freelancers is like, it's just the, the repeated exposure, both in the creative process and then in the business process that I'm just, I'm in awe of my clients who, who do this day in and day out because they're called to do it.

Lisa: Absolutely. Yeah. How, how do you… do you like running your own business? Is that liberating for you? Or how does, how does that go?

Justine: Oh, man, I'm realizing more and more that I don't know if I ever really had a choice. I'm just... in terms of values, you know, for me, freedom, independence and choice are probably my top three. And I don't think I realized it until pretty recently, you know. In my head, I, you know, I've worked in an agency before I've worked for a brand before. I've also worked in partnerships with other coaches, and I'm just like, the minute someone has, you know, a grasp of my time just like drives me nuts. So I love allocating time to my clients, but the minute someone's like, “Oh yeah, like, send me over your calendar. And I'll book things in there.” I'm like, “Ooh, no, you don't, like, that's mine.” So I'm realizing now more than ever, that for me as a business owner was kind of the only way that I was ever going to be able to live, where I wanted to live and do what I wanted to do.

So, you know, I wanted to work for the X Games and partly the reason why I was a contractor and not full-time is I did not want to live in Bristol, Connecticut. I just couldn't get myself to do it. So in terms of choices, it was like, well, I can either be my own boss and learn how to do the client thing, or I learn how to be a good employee and learn how to do the employee thing.

And I was like, I think I'd rather learn how to do the client thing. That sounds way more fun and freeing and hard, for sure, because you need to be able to know when you're going to eat next, but it just felt like... it felt like a less painful learning experience than having to learn how to be a good employee. If that makes sense.

Lisa: It does. Yeah. Yeah. I think, I mean, I think to a degree, as cheesy as that sounds, I think entrepreneurship chooses you and it's not necessarily something you choose. You’re just kind of built for it.

Justine: Yeah. And I mean, I think I definitely had an advantage. You know, my father has been an entrepreneur his whole business life. I think I was probably more exposed to it than a lot of other folks. So I definitely have that luck in that privilege for sure, in terms of like, you can't be what you can't see. And, you know, I witnessed my father being super fulfilled, even in the day-to-day crap or even when things were going badly, it was still like a hunger within him to like, make this thing work. And I think I kind of inherited that as like, “Oh, I'm going to make this thing work. I just need to figure out how.” But I kind of agree with you. Some people, you know, COVID’s a really great example. Some people became entrepreneurs by necessity. And some people, you know, three years into freelancing realize that they absolutely hate it and not the hustle for finding clients is just not worthwhile. And that's okay too.

Lisa: Mmhmm. Well, is there anything that I have not asked you that you'd like to share with our audience?

Justine: No, I think for me, it's just, I really hope that people... I just want people to recognize like how amazing they are. As corny as that sounds. I'm just like to be A) in the outdoors industry, which is an industry very few people outside of it understand. To also then have the double whammy of being an entrepreneur or a creative or a freelancer. I just feel like there is so much unknown and so much isolation that can come from that, that I'm just... for me, courage is a word that I feel just like encompasses the people that we get to work with in this industry. And it makes me really excited.

And also growth, you know, like there's a reckoning taking place in this industry, just like there is everywhere else. And it gives me so much faith and hope to, to see people genuinely try and being willing to get out of their comfort zone to address some of this. And, yeah, it just makes me so excited to be a part of this community for sure.

Lisa: Mmm. That is beautiful. Beautiful. Where, where can people follow you online?

Justine: Yeah. Now that I've learned how to get Instagram to not dictate my business and rather than the other way around, a good place to kind of follow my train of thought or the inspiration that I get from my clients is @justawildthought, or on my website. I'm not super great at promoting myself online, but I'd say those are two great places to kind of stay tuned and see what's happening and also get some wisdom from my clients because I'm just trying to be the vessel all the time.

Lisa: Awesome. Well, we will put, we'll put links to that in the show notes and, yeah, thank you again for being here. That was fun.

Justine: Cool. Thank you so much. And thank you guys so much for all the work that you do. I've been creeping on wheelie since living in Europe and desperately wishing that I had women's-driven in like agency like you guys out there. So I'm not, I'm not at all exaggerating when I say like, I've been following you guys for a while and I've just been really so impressed with the culture that you bring about and what you've created, Lisa, especially. And for me, it's an example of what can exist in this industry if we, if we deliberately and intentionally create it for ourselves. So thank you as well for kind of being a pioneer in that way.

Lisa: Oh, thanks so much.

Iris: Thank you so much for joining us on the show Justine, we loved getting to know you and I know our audience did too.

If you enjoy the show, please subscribe in your podcast app and leave us a review if you haven't already, that really helps us reach more people. You can follow us on Instagram @wheeliecreative, and you can find episode transcripts and more information at Thank you so much for being here and we'll see you next week.

4 views0 comments


bottom of page