Friends in the Frame - Jenny
‘I’ve lived my life to the max. I don’t regret anything. I’ve done anything I’ve ever possibly had the energy for.’
Jenny is a delight to be around. She wants to enjoy herself, and bring joy to others. And this isn’t about being frivolous – pleasure is a serious business for her, a conscious philosophy: ‘If I’m having fun then all the other things in life slot into place.’
Putting this philosophy into practice always starts with people. She values her connections with family and friends highly. As a friend, I can testify to her warmth, sensitivity and kindness. She loves hosting and entertaining, which – as a bonus – allows her to indulge her great love of food and cooking.
‘Living life to the max’ is also about using her body and engaging her senses. ‘I’m a pretty energetic person. I’m given to extremes.’ She loves dancing: ‘It brings me into a more fun sense of myself.’ While being in nature – walking or mountain hiking – gives her a sense of ‘meditative peace’.
Jenny’s passionate philosophy is, by her own admission, a response to earlier emotional struggles, which she’s proud to have overcome: ‘It’s been the hardest thing I’ve had to do, but the most rewarding.’ As a result she’s become very much her own woman: ‘I spent so much time trying to be normal – it was exhausting. So now I try to draw on the energy of knowing that I’m different.’ This courage to be different is reflected in her heroines – strong, independent women like Lady Gaga (who shares the dance floor with Jenny in her portrait!).
Jenny quotes a significant line from her favourite film Mongol (about Genghis Khan): ‘Never scold a weak cub: he may become a brutal tiger.’ It speaks of how she has faced head-on the challenges of her mind: ‘You may start on the weaker side of certain things in life, but these can end up being your most powerful strengths.’ I see and feel Jenny’s strength.
How I know Jenny
I met Jen on a totally bonkers retreat at a wacky place called Osho Leela (Google it – you’ll see what I mean). I remember seeing Jenny sign in, just after I had arrived, and I instantly got a sense of her playfulness, wit and intelligence (and that’s just in the way she was filling out a form!). We had several long chats on that retreat, and realised we were kindred spirits in our shared love of creativity, laughter and spiritual-seeking. I find Jen’s determination and strong independence of mind an ongoing inspiration.