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Episode 16: Finding Contentment with Sallie Hoefer

Updated: Jan 19, 2022

This week on Outside by Design we talk to the brilliant Sallie Hoefer from Camber Outdoors. Sallie gets deep about positive self-talk, representing diverse outdoor participants, and the problem of substance abuse in the outdoor industry. Enjoy the show and comment below to let us know what you think!

​Follow Sallie @sillysalliez



Episode Transcript

Lisa: Hey everybody. Welcome to Outside by Design. I'm your host Lisa Slagle and today is an interesting episode because we get into addiction in the outdoor industry and how everything gets celebrated with a beer whether it's a summit, or a bike ride, or going fishing. It's a beer and then it's another beer and then it's another beer and then so many beers and that's where it starts. So it's an interesting episode stay tuned for that.

But first, I just want to wish everybody a happy Outdoor Retailer. I'm in Denver right now with our operations manager Jessica Parker and we are just laying it out there. And tomorrow I am heading down to Telluride for a Project 16x. I'm going to the Entrepreneurship Summit where we talk about building businesses focused on both profit and purpose. So I think it's going to be pretty rad and of course, I love Telluride and love roaming around my homeland of Colorado. Even though I live in Montana now, I think my heart will always be in western Colorado. So it's going to be good. I'm excited and you know, just trying to keep my head on straight through the Outdoor Retailer craziness, powering through it for sure. I hope you are too. I hope everybody's having a good show.

So let's kick it off with this episode. I'm talking to Sallie Hoefer, she is amazing. Sallie is just one of the smartest people I know. She's the partnership manager at Camber Outdoors. Sallie is like one of my favorite people, she is smart and funny and she can do handstands anywhere and she's so so amazing at mountain biking… you should totally ride with Sallie if you ever get the chance. And Sallie never just shoots the shit, she’s always deep and meaningful. And today is no different.

This episode is a little bit longer because I thought it had a lot of depth and an interesting topic that we don't really talk about very much in the outdoor industry covering addiction and change and bettering yourself and... I just thought it was interesting. So this one is a little longer and breaks our format of nine-minute chairlift laps, but that's okay. It's worth breaking the format over Really good takeaways and I hope you enjoy it as much as I always adore talking to Sallie.

Lisa: Hey Sallie, thanks so much for being here on the podcast today.

Sallie: Thanks Lisa. I'm excited to talk with you today.

Lisa: Where are you recording from? That's always the first question.

Sallie: Sure. I am recording from Carbondale, Colorado and my living room with my pupper Zion here and a piece of cheesecake.

Lisa: That sounds amazing.

Sallie: Yeah. Yeah. I feel really fortunate to be able to work for Camber Outdoors remotely and I recently moved here just a few months ago. So working from home is definitely awesome and a little bit of a transition too.

Lisa: Yeah. So you are the partnership manager at Camber Outdoors, right?

Sallie: I am. Yeah, working mostly on Partnerships. But then also on our database, I manage our database, I manage our fundraisers and our Camber Exchange program as well.

Lisa: You do all the things.

Sallie: Well, working for a nonprofit you kind of have to wear more than one hat which is exciting because you always get to work on new things and build your skill set and stuff.

Lisa: And it’s amazing that you worked for Camber out of Boulder, right, for like 2 years or something?

Sallie: Yeah, so it's based in Boulder, Colorado, and then my partner got a job in Carbondale. So I approached them and asked them what they would think I work remotely and they were super cool about it. I think it matches the ethos of our organization, being flexible with people and their lifestyle and so yeah, I just it's pretty amazing to work from home and still be able to go to Boulder. I go to Boulder about six times a year, actually maybe more than that. I'll be heading down tomorrow for a Camber exchange with People for Bikes.

Lisa: That's awesome. So before I got employees and I started and I was just freelance graphic designing my face off. I would work from home and I loved it and then, you know getting employees meant I had to have a place for them to work like an office and I remember that being a really big transition for me to like put pants on. You know, and like put contacts in instead of glasses and like look moderately presentable. I remember that transition was rough. So I'm curious. Are you loving it? Is it the opposite, where you're like, this is the best ever to work from home?

Sallie: I love it. I am kind of a ragamuffin just you know in general so brushing teeth and putting clothes on is sometimes difficult but... you know, sometimes the teeth don't get brushed until 5 p.m. But that's okay. I've never had a cavity. So, you know as I'm just using what nature gave me.

And I love working from home with my dog every day. He's 11 now. So this is the first time I've been able to spend every day with him and yeah... for eight years since I've gotten him, so that's pretty awesome. But it does take some effort to you know, go out and sometimes I really try to make an effort to work at a coffee shop for a few hours in the day. Just so I'm around other humans and so I can use my voice. And it's a good it's a good transition overall.

Lisa: Yeah, that's awesome. Do you have a great playlist?

Sallie: Oh, I have a couple so I have one called Bitch, Please. And that is a compilation of Rihanna, Beyonce, Sia, Nicki Minaj and a couple Arcade Fire sounds mixed in there. Then I've also been listening to a lot of tropical house music. If you're ever, you know, trying to get pumped up to work and also feel like really positive and have your vibrations really high listen to Tropical house. I'm telling you, the pitches. There's like high-pitched tones. There's fun like, words that go along with it. It's all like pretty positive and clean, good clean fun.

Lisa: Oh, wow.

Sallie: Yeah, and then I also have a mix that is it has some Buddhist chanting and some really like spa-like Buddhist zen music for when I'm feeling a little stressed out.

Lisa: That's hilarious that you have such diversity in your musical choices.

Sallie: Yeah, and that doesn't even include any of the jam. But but yeah some Phish thrown in there too sometimes on Friday afternoon, maybe Yep, get your creative juices flowing.

Lisa: Yes. Yes. So for your information who listens to this podcast, it's a lot of marketing managers and brand managers and people who work in editorial. And a lot of very creative people. And I am under very strong belief that everyone is creative. So, how do you think that you’re creative?

Sallie: Well, I had to get a little creative thinking about how I was creative, but I actually think I'm really creative too. It might not be really apparent in my job title as partnership manager at Camber Outdoors, but I think everybody has to use a certain amount of creativity when working in non-profit. You don't necessarily have the right tools and all the resources you need to get things done in a way that you typically would for a brand or a bigger company. So you got to get creative and kind of hustle and figure out ways to get things done with, you know, maybe not all the right tools. I tell Alanis Morissette that she better figure out how to make that spoon and knife.

Lisa: [laughs] Of course you do.

Sallie: So, me managing our database... I have a political science degree. I am not a technical or data driven person. You know, my background isn’t, I don't have an education in that. But I've built a skill set over the years and so now I get to work with our developer directly and really build out our database the way that we think it will work best for organization. So I use a lot of creativity there. With our partnerships, we have partners that are as small as like a one-woman business all the way up to huge companies like REI and Patagonia. So all of our partnerships have to look a little bit different and I think really figuring out the best way to partner with an organization depending on their size and what they're capable of and their reach and audience and that all takes a lot of creativity as well.

When I first started at Camber a couple years ago we didn't yet have a structure for partnerships with nonprofits and women-owned businesses. So at that point they were paying the base level for for membership. And we saw that the transactional partnership wasn't really as mutually beneficial as we wanted them to be for both parties. And so we figured out a way to create partnerships with women-owned businesses where they're not necessarily paying that upfront fee and we're really tapping into our audience and network and content stuff like that. And we do the same with nonprofits as well. So it's really fun to to build out that programming. I did it with my my manager Amy Luther and that's been really fun to build out and figure out different ways to work with organizations, companies, like Wheelie Creative to Shredly to nonprofits that are all situated in the outdoor industry and conservation or other types of spaces.

Lisa: Yeah, I think you have great intuition.

Sallie: Thank you. I have been working on my intuition.

Lisa: Oh, I think you're really good at and you find these connections that don't exist yet and you're like, hey what if this happened or what if you tried this and I'm always like “oh wow. Good one.”

Sallie: Yeah, I mean I always like to I love connecting people. I love connecting people in different parts of my life. Like if I know someone personally and they're doing something awesome and I meet someone else professionally I love to make those connections and make it so they can benefit off of each other and benefit off of the relationship. I just always like to stay curious and ask a lot of questions and not always fit everything into the specific guidelines. Like let's think outside the box a little bit. How could this actually create something that we want that we don't yet have and what would that look like and how do we get there?

Lisa: I think that's a very very valuable skill set.

Sallie: It's kind of a it's like a soft skill that is not necessarily definable. I mean, I guess it is definable, but I haven't... it's only been over the last couple of years that I've really realized this quality in myself and it's been pretty cool to build to build upon.

Lisa: Yeah. So now let's kick it over to some commercials.

Ad Break: Do you feel like you have nothing in common with traditional ad agencies? Do you count time in powder days and desert trips? Do you own or work for a company that's heavily involved in the outdoor industry? And mostly, do you like measurable results that you can understand delivered by people who understand you? Hey, congratulations. You just found your brand's favorite adventure partner. That's right, I'm talking about those nerds over at Wheelie: like a bike doing a wheelie. It's named that because it helps your business level up. Also when I was 22, I thought Wheelie Creative was a really good pun for really creative. But anyway, Wheelie Creative is a creative agency for people who thrive outside. check them out. But you might be asking yourself. Hey Lisa, isn't that your company? Yes. Yes it is my company, but I'm paying my employees to edit this podcast. So you get to hear a commercial about it. Marketing made fun.

Lisa: So tell us a little bit about yourself and kind of the background of how you got to where you are living in Carbondale. Where'd you come from originally? And how did you get there?

Sallie: Sure. I am from the suburbs of Chicago. I grew up there till I was 18 and then went to the University of Kansas. I studied political science there and graduated by the skin of my teeth, is that the saying skin of your teeth? I think so. It's weird. It's a weird one. I know doesn't make sense. But it was rough. I had different priorities back then but took five years to graduate and then I went home for a month and my moms like okay, let's go get a suit. And so she went out and bought me a really nice suit, and I still felt really lost. I'm like, I have no idea what I want to do. I was applying to like manufacturing companies in Chicago. I had this political science degree. I always wanted to do something where I was helping people but the tools that I walked away from school with didn't really set me up with like what I actually wanted to do next.

So throughout College I had a ton of friends that went to school in Fort Collins. So I went back and forth to Colorado a handful of times and always went snowboarding and I decided well, I saw Vail Resorts was in Chicago doing these like mass interviews. So I'm like cool. I'm just going to move to the mountains and be a ski bum because I thought that was probably the best plan of action at this point. And the plan was to stay a season, as is everyone's, and I worked for Vail Resorts first season at the kids ski school and decided in the summer I didn't want to leave. So I got a job at a restaurant at a really cool small resort in Vail and started waiting tables and did that then for three years?

At that same time I was also volunteering with an organization called SOS Outreach Society and they get underserved youth on snowboards and then they teach him a bunch of life lessons and teach him how to give back to their community. So there's five core values: its courage, discipline, integrity, wisdom, and compassion. And I worked with the same group of girls for three years and we talked about each of those core values every time we met and snowboarded together, and that was pretty awesome. I think that was the first time I volunteered with an organization and that was situated in the outdoor space. So by the time my three and a half years was up at Vail I was like, you know, I don't know. I know I don't want to be a bartender for any longer. I know that I love helping people and I know that I really love being outside. So what do I do?

I started applying to a ton of different places on the Front Range, a ton of different outdoor industry, but I never got like a call back from anybody or interview from anyone, but luckily I had this regular at my bar. We had a bunch of regulars at the bar at that time because I'd been there for so long and one of them was the finance director for the International Mountain Bicycling Association and earlier that day he's like, well, I see you're only working part-time now like what's going on and I told him I'm looking for a way out of here. I need to start my career. Basically, I need to put my big girl pants on and start doing something that's more career-oriented. And you know. Sometimes bartending is a career for people so I don't want to diss that either but it just wasn't for me.

So he was like, okay, give me a resume. We're hiring a membership coordinator a IMBA and I sent him my resume that night and got a call back. Like two days later. Had an interview a week later and got out of jail and moved to Boulder Colorado within five weeks. So it was awesome. My job as a bartender got me a job my first job in the outdoor industry. It's perfect. Yeah, and it shows, you know, I didn't have the experience of the outdoor industry before that. I really played up my role as a mentor for the nonprofit organization that I volunteered for and showed them my passion that way. And then I used the skills from bartending to translate over to membership services as well because as a bartender, you have a ton of interpersonal skills in that sales background. Then while I was at that the resort, I also was on like a Leed certification committee to make our Resort a green Resort and stuff like that. So I really played up those those things that didn't maybe seem like a big deal and made them made them pretty big deal on my resume and it worked.

From there. I was at IMBA as the membership coordinator for maybe a year and then I moved into chapter services. So at the time this was I think 2011 and was growing its chapter program very rapidly. So the chapter program was where we took grassroots mountain bike clubs from around the country and paired them up with the International Mountain Biking Association, so we created a partnership. A lot of times we were the 501c3 that they used and I was the liaison between the local bike club and the National Organization and then after five years at IMBA, I was ready to grow and move on again and I applied for a job at Camber Outdoors.

And it was not a role that I would necessarily think to apply for originally because it was a coordinator position and at that point I had moved on past coordinator, but they had never hired for the role and they were looking to grow the organization. And so I took it on and kind of, I guess, I took a step down but now I feel like it's catapulted me even higher than I was before. So here I am today at Camber Outdoors and now being able to work remotely and yeah... working in Carbondale as their Partnerships manager.

Lisa: That's a really fun life story.

Sallie: Yeah, it is. There's a lot of fun in between, lots of bike riding some other fun outdoor activities. Challenges, highs and lows along the way.

Lisa: Do you still have that suit that your mom bought you?

Sallie: So I do, it's a nice suit. I can't remember where it's from. But when I moved to Vail my parents were not stoked. They're like, we just paid for this education. You're going to be a ski bum. What are you going to do with that suit we bought you. So I left the plane, arrived in Colorado and forgot the suit on the plane. Luckily they like called me over the loudspeaker and I got it back somehow. I think that yeah, I'm not sure but the suit wasn't meant to be honestly. I don't think I've ever worn it in full. Maybe to a job interview.

Lisa: You should wear it next time we hang out.

Sallie: Only if we can do karaoke.

Lisa: That’s a really good plan. Yeah, I have a suit jacket with shoulder pads in it that I sometimes like to wear when I need to be intimidating.

Sallie: Well, maybe at Outdoor Retailer. I'll put some shoulder pads in it and wear it. I think I think that would be. That would speak volumes of me.

Lisa: Yeah, it would be effective.

Sallie: Mmmhmm.

Lisa: Isn't it funny though how in the outdoor industry if you show up dressed like that. People are like, oh this is this is not working. Like you're not supposed to be here.

Sallie: Totally and that was something I struggled with. So when I first applied to IMBA I did wear a suit. I think I just wore the skirt and a tank top or something because it was super hot. But I felt really uncomfortable in that outfit because I knew the company culture wasn't like that at all and my I would call my dad, like, Dad I have this interview. He's like you need to wear a suit and I'm like, no, it doesn't match. You don't get it and he's like no you should really just wear this suit and so I compromised and wore, you know, half of the suit, but I still think it always pays off to be a little nicer than your supposed to.

Lisa: Absolutely, and now you get to wear whatever you want from your house and you help elevate women in the outdoor industry.

Sallie: I do I get to wear pajama pants and purple tank tops all day if I want to and that's fine.

Lisa: That's wonderful.

Sallie: It is really wonderful and also even being at the office at Camber The culture of the organization is such that we value outdoor time and flexibility. I mean, we definitely are like more entrepreneurial minded where you got to get your work done, work hard because we're a small nimble team. But but if you do that and your Lululemon pants or whatever, you know your workout clothes that's totally fine with everybody there.

Lisa: Yeah, I think that's a fantastic asset or you know, ethos.

Sallie: Yeah got to fit in all end somehow.

Lisa: Yeah. You and I have had a few different conversations throughout life about work-life balance and all the different things that we do to try to achieve that. What are you working on right now for your work-life balance?

Sallie: Wow. Well over the past couple of years I've had a pretty big shift in what I've been doing personally to feel even and grounded. I shared with you before but I quit drinking alcohol in October of 2016. So it's almost two years and that has made such a huge impact on my life and how I balance work. How to show up at work, how I show up in my personal life. And so I've really been on this, I guess, it's a spiritual journey and really figuring out who I am and tapping into into more of my creative side too, it's amazing how many things I do now that I just didn't have time to do before. I feel like because I just had different priorities at the time. So mountain biking is a priority of mine. And I love that but I've also slowed down a bit and really focused a lot on yoga over the last year and doing a lot of work internally.

Have you seen the Ali Wong stand up?

Lisa: On Netflix? Yes.

Sallie: So the part where she's talking about like everything you do in your 20s and you're like, what did I do? How did I do this? And then you turn 30 and you're like and you're in this like... I don't remember the last decade of my life. What did I do? How did I become this? And then you spend your 30s like going to self-help retreats and yoga retreats and like reading all these books on being your complete self and and diving into like your shadow side. I don't know all this stuff. If you watch Ali Wong and see that stand-up part, you'll see exactly how I feel right now. I'm 34 almost so definitely going through like some type of midlife crisis. I guess quarter Life, Third life crisis? Third life. Let's call it third life. Yeah.

Lisa: Yeah. Yeah, that's really interesting because I think I am going through that. I’m in my 30s, as well as most of my friends, and just kind of getting to know yourself as an adult.

Sallie: Mmm-hmm.

Lisa: It's a really interesting thing.

Sallie: Yeah, it's amazing. I don't know I mean... and we don't have to talk about this for a long but I am super passionate about substance use disorders and mental illness and you know, we don't talk about that a lot and our industries. I feel like in the outdoor industry because it's such a light-hearted industry. Everyone's having fun. We're all getting rad and being stoked and being outdoors and and we are really fortunate to be able to have these jobs where we can mix our passion and our lifestyle, but I think there still is a culture where it's you know acceptable to abuse alcohol and get fucked up and and it doesn't react to everybody's bodies the same and recognizing that and your self is super important. And just acknowledging that like, I know there is so much mental illness in our industry too and just, I don't know, being aware of that and talking about it. Especially like we all do these Outdoor Sports to feel better too, you know, it's kind of like a medication for us it helps us feel more grounded and level-headed and so. I don't know just acknowledging that other side of our industry and where we still struggle to is important. I think.

Lisa: Yeah, I agree and I think as well like so many people have had head injuries and concussions in our industry and and that like CTE is a real thing and you know, all the side effects that are so long-lasting on concussion is also something that doesn't get talked about too much but I think is really important.

Sallie: Yeah, it's huge. I mean all the the mental health side of that whole thing is like because you can't see it, because people can't see your injury. Our industries are so focused on like physical, the physical body, you know, and a lot of these injuries or illnesses are things that you can't see from the outside. So. People assume it's just all good, maybe, when it's not.

Lisa: Totally. It is interesting though how much emphasis goes, and I mean obviously I'm in branding and marketing and like how important Instagram is and looking, you know having the right amount of messiness and the right amount of you know van life happening and it's all very much based on appearances. I find that to be pretty interesting from the brand side. And I'm sure you do too in your work at Camber as well. Like what do you guys think about Instagram? And what do you think about Instagram as a person and and how much emphasis is put on to the like what it looks like to be in the outdoors?

Sallie: Yeah. I mean I feel like right now a lot. Well, there a lot of exciting things going on right now. With Instagram in the past and the way that brands market their products in the past was typically and traditionally a white men and I see that we as people are questioning that now and saying hey like. Why is this only from the white male’s perspective? Let's get the perspective of a woman or a woman of color or someone from the lgbtq community. And I know you understand that too with your wheelhouse workshops. But yeah, I think it all depends also on who you follow on your social feeds. I am super conscious of who I follow and why I follow them so I make sure that I'm following people that make me feel good, that inspire me, that lift me up. People that I can see are doing amazing work and if they don't I unfollow them because I just want to control my feed. It's like if you're in front of something all day and you spend a lot of time like in front of social media or you know on our computers the stimulus that are coming at you, they have an effect on you. So if you're seeing things that are negatively impacting you it's going to impact your thoughts and then your actions and then you know, what you do day to day. So I think it's super important to curate your own feeds for your own mental health, but then I mean there's just all that really exciting work going on with Diversify Outdoors... that coalition inspires me and all the people who run social media feeds are part of that coalition are also really inspiring and I love to see what they're doing to raise awareness of the lgbtq community in the outdoors, people of color in the outdoors, women in the outdoors, people with physical disabilities in the outdoors. And then also the effect and the impact that the outdoors can have people with mental illness as well. So yeah, I think there is like a dark side of social but I think there's also really really positive and bright side too.

Lisa: I do too. What what's your advice to like someone who is a brand manager or a marketing manager? Who, you know, they're tasked with this kind of heavy responsibility of putting out photos all the time and content all the time. What would you tell a brand manager or marketing manager to kind of help diversify the outdoors and really truly make it everyone's outdoors.

Sallie: Well, I'd say first of all, so I won't name any one in particular but I look at some people's feeds who I love but I'm just like, come on. There's five men on there and one woman and they're all white. And guess what, you're missing a half of the country, more than half of the country when you're only marketing it to this group of people. And if people can't see themselves in your ad, they're not going to be compelled to buy the product or to look into the product more or to like your feed or to start following your feed.

So I think just showing as many different kinds of people that can relate to your product as possible is so key. One of the things that we focus on at Camber Outdoors is... one of the pieces of data that we really focus on is the idea that a perceived barrier to advancement of women is that we don't have role models to look up to. And so the more women we can see being CEOs being VPs being in that c-suite level the more will. And that we can do it too and we can see our self in that role as well.

So to Brand managers and marketing people out there. It's the right thing to do to show a diverse group of people in your branding but more than that: It's really good business because there's only so many white males out there. There's a huge population of all different kinds of people that you can reach if you just broaden your horizons a little bit. Cast your net wider is what I would say.

Lisa: That’s a really great way to put it - cast your net wider.

Sallie: Yeah, you can catch more fish.

Lisa: Yeah, that's cool. We put a lot of work in into photography and making sure that we try to have a very realistic setting that's just like a little bit sloppy and a little natural and then also trying to like make sure that any ambassadors our athletes so we feature are totally natural human beings and not just living up to one prototype of an outdoors woman or outdoorsman. But it can be really hard to find, you know, different diversity in a mountain town and I think that it's just a vicious cycle and we're all kind of working toward making it a better reality.

Sallie: Yeah. I completely agree. It's definitely super challenging to find maybe a woman of color to model and an athlete so that you're using an actual athlete in the product branding. Or a model even. But I would say that, check out the organizations that reach communities of color and reach out to them and don't ask them for anything but maybe involve them in the conversation, involve them and you know be curious. Ask questions, ask their perspective and how they think you can tap into a community, a different community. There are a lot of really innovative and young, amazing individuals out there doing really cool things that might look different from people you've seen on the cover of a magazine in the past. So just, yeah, get creative and and keep looking further.

Also, you know, redefine what outdoors is. To a lot of communities getting outdoors might be hanging out at the park with their family. It doesn't necessarily have to be this core community and having that in exclusive and core community can be really intimidating to people too. So think about how you can open up your brand and make it feel more welcoming to everybody.

Lisa: That is where your creativity shines.

Sallie: Oh, thanks.

Lisa: Right there. Yeah I think that way of thinking is just so important.

Sallie: Thank you Lisa. Yeah. I mean, there's so many, and I am not an expert on this at all, but. There's so many different cultures melding into this country and we all want the same thing and that's to be happy and prosperous. And I mean maybe not everybody wants to be in nature, but the science shows that you're happier when you spend more time outside. So yeah, if we could just make it more inclusive to everybody and the products will do better. The products will sell more. The industries will be healthier. It will just be better for everybody.

Lisa: I love that perspective that we are all just seeking the same thing which is happiness.

Sallie: Yeah or contentment. I guess happiness like... What is happy? You know, I guess contentment. Peace. I think Americans are so obsessed with being happy. Like you can't be happy without feeling sad and feeling all these other things like so yeah, I can go down another rabbit hole with that one. But we surely don't have to.

Lisa: And now time for another commercial break.

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Lisa: I really like, I always like my conversations with you because it seems like you spend just a lot of time thinking things through and thinking about like big, big, big concepts.

Sallie: Yeah. I'm an empath. I'm an empath are you? I feel things really intensely. And so that's a really good thing. It's also sometimes not an amazing thing, but overall I'd say it's a really good thing. But yeah, it's big. Fake it till you make it.

Lisa: Yeah, that's that's my that's always been my motto.

Sallie: Totally. The other day. I was talking to someone and she was like, oh she was a new photographer actually, but also she was asking me how much she thinks that she should charge for a website redesign. And she was undercharging so much. I'm like you have to value yourself. You have to teach people how to treat you, first of all, and if you don't value yourself monetarily then they're not going to value you either. So hike that price up by like 50%, okay? And she was like, well, I just thought since I'm new I feel like I don't really know what I'm doing and I'm like, well, that's a thing. That's a thing that many women feel, many men feel it too. But. I know many women feel imposter syndrome. We all feel it and it's just human nature I think and it's you know, there's probably some cultural aspects to it too. And and how we see ourselves as women, but just yeah really fake it till you make it.

Lisa: Yeah, it's funny. Because I'm going through a very interesting transition. Would you like to hear about it?

Sallie: I would love to.

Lisa: Okay it's interesting because I started the company all by myself off of like an old old laptop and you know, I didn't have any financial backing whatsoever. Never have, I put myself through college and I have never had like an abundance in so many ways. And then now the company is kicking ass like all this hard work and it's you know nine years into it. It's finally paying off. We're killing it and I have this newfound like success and financial success and like I'm no longer faking it till I make it and I kind of wrestle a little bit with like, um, I don't know how successful I am. You know, I have a little bit of a hard time accepting that within myself in this newer phase where I'm like, holy shit. I did it, you know.

Sallie: Mmm, so do you feel any guilt?

Lisa: I don't feel guilt but I'm sort of just like, oh, well, that's not like... I almost feel like holy shit. I can buy a couch.

Sallie: Yeah, yeah a new couch.

Lisa: I've lived in my house for three years and I'm sitting on a lawn chair right now in my own living room. Like I'm like, I'm just gonna go out and I'm going to buy a couch because I can. Like just to have abundance is mind-blowing to me and you know, I'm not an ostentatious person and it's like something I'm not used to.

Sallie: Yeah, I think once you achieve your goal continuing to build upon that and build bigger better and greater goals too. Like you made it. So what's next like... it better be big.

Lisa: Yeah exactly because I just I can't be complacent and just be like, we're doing it. We did it.

Sallie: Yeah.

Lisa: But it is interesting though. I always like get kind of uncomfortable when people are like, oh you're so successful or like they label me that and I'm always like mmm. Well, not really I ate four day old cold pizza for breakfast.

Sallie: But instead you just say, thank you.

Lisa: Yep. Exactly.

Sallie: And what's that balance between, you know, continuing to evolve and get better and better and better and accepting where you are at your moment and time and knowing that you're perfectly perfect just where you are at the same time.

Lisa: Yeah!

Sallie: That's always such a hard balance.

Lisa: Yeah, have you ever encountered different, you know jumps in mindset or lifestyle where you're like, whoa, how am I going to adjust to this?

Sallie: Yeah. I mean, I think the biggest one was quitting drinking for me. I so nothing you couldn't tell on the outside that I had a quote, “drinking problem.” None of my friends would be like, oh, she's an alcoholic or anything like that. But on the inside I was I was suffering and I had a pretty low... I thought really low of myself. I would have really negative self-talk. And I knew that. And I had just started at Camber Outdoors a couple months before that and I saw I was finally being surrounded by all these amazing women like really high-level successful women and the first Camber Exchange that I managed, we had a speaker. She's a VP at SmartWool. Her name's Anne Wiper and she talked about a lot of struggles that she experienced with her family and how to balance that with her work and being a VP at SmartWool. And it was around substance abuse and I saw her talking about it openly as a VP-level woman in the outdoor industry and it inspired me so much.

And I was like, I cannot keep doing this. So one morning I woke up and told my boyfriend that I needed to get help. He had no idea that I was going through this suffering so deeply inside. And so I actually joined this like holistic healing class, it was like a six-week course online. It was amazing. It was all about changing the way you speak to yourself every single day. So every morning they would send you an e-mail and and it was a mantra that you're supposed to repeat about yourself every day and they were all different types of things. But really it's like reprogram your brain to speak positively about yourself and the impacts that that can have are unbelievable. So I basically... and I'm not there. It's not like I’m ever going to reach this goal, but retraining my mind to love myself instead of like talking shit to myself. Really that has shaped how I show up at my work and my personal life. I've been able to stay so much more focused on everything. I recently have gotten out of debt. I bought two bikes in the last two years. So yeah, I think your question was on how I've reframed the way I think about things right?

Lisa: Yeah, and just when you've had to like kind of meet new expectations for yourself and create new expectations for yourself.

Sallie: Oh my gosh, it's unbelievable. And then the way you think about yourself. I just have grown so much over the last two years. I taught myself how to do so many different things. I've stepped up to the plate in so many ways. I feel like at work even where... before I never felt like I was doing a poor job. I just wasn't living up to my fullest potential and now I'm able to do that. And I don't necessarily think I'm unable to do something because of the skills I have. I know that I can do anything I want to do. So. Yeah, I think changing that mindset is super powerful.

Lisa: That’s incredible and you are really just an explosion of joy and you know, I absolutely love when I show up to an event and you're there and I'm like, yes! I think you bring a lot of light and love and empathy into the whole industry.

Sallie: Thank you. Yeah, I feel like I do too.

Lisa: Yeah, and it's exciting. It's just such a such a wonderful thing and handstands - you bring handstands too.

Sallie: Oh, my handsome game is pretty strong right now. I recently got four pound ankle weights and I am working on my press-ups.

Lisa: Wow.

Sallie: So next time I see you my legs are going to levitate off of the ground.

Lisa: I can't wait. Cool. Well, you've given everybody a lot of good links to different things.

Sallie: Oh good.

Lisa: I'd like to include your playlists if they're on Spotify.

Sallie: Okay, so I have Tidal because Beyoncé is on Tidal, her new album. Oh, but I do also have Spotify I can create something for you. Okay?

Lisa: That'd be great. Yeah with some tropical house music.

Sallie: Yeah, we can do tropical house. We won't be able to do the new Beyonce album because it's only on Tidal because Jay-Z owns Tidal, but I can make it work. I can make something that will be comperable.

Lisa: Awesome. Well, thank you so much for all your words and awesomeness and it's been a it's been a wonderful podcast.

Sallie: Thank you. I've had an amazing time talking to you Lisa. You're one of my favorite people.

Lisa: You're one of my favorite people. I can't wait to see you again.

Sallie: No, you're the best.

Lisa: Man, I love talking to Sallie. I could talk to Sallie forever. But you should follow her because she's an interesting cool person. On Instagram she is @sillysalliez and pretty appropriately her bio says “free your mind and your ass will follow.” Highly entertaining and of course follow her @CamberOutdoors as well because Camber is an amazing organization that helps Elevate women from the backcountry to the boardroom. They've been tremendously helpful in my business and helping us make connections and partnerships and if you're a woman owned business hit them up for sure and they will get you connected with the right people.

Alright, thank you so much for listening to Outside by Design where we talk about the business side of creativity. Next week I have a good one. Next week is Aisha Weinhold and she is the founder and executive director of No Man's Land Film Festival and just an energetic awesome human being so here's a quick sneak peek, and we'll see you next week.

Aisha: We have to stop calling out when we are diversifying our media because I feel like like so often... I don't know like like there was like the Patagonia post and they featured. I forget if it was Mikhail, I think it was but bouldering in Bishop and it was more or less like one of the first people of color they ever included in their branding and in just any media they were putting out. And they didn't say anything about it, which I thought was really, really cool and they just treated it as another photo. Versus like I've definitely seen other brands that are like, “we celebrate women” like “look, look at us doing it.” And I think that ultimately that undermines this entire mission of diversifying the outdoors and diversifying media because it's still... it's not normalized if you have to call it out, you know what I mean?

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