JOEY HULIN / HORIZON INSPIRED
AS ONE CHAMPIONS drives at uncovering impactful projects; Peeling back the layers to reveal the amazing people striving forward, all the lessons learned along the way and whats up next. As a community we're all about uniting positive, ambitious and innovative characters.
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1. Tell us about you/your company/project.
Horizon Inspired was born from a passion to create a non-judgemental, relatable and inspirational space for people to connect with themselves; through meditation, one to one support, retreats or through articles or blogs. It’s about creating an environment for people to take off the mask, to really listen to themselves, to realise their own potential and to live their life authentically.
It all started 5 years ago when the little niggling feeling 'there must be more to life' became stronger for me than the false pressures I felt from society, those around me and I even put on myself about what I 'should' be doing. I found I was conforming to what seemed to make everyone else around me happy and had totally lost touch with myself. I quit my job and the life as I knew it to volunteered in Mexico and Costa Rica and came to meditation and yoga for the first time. Meditation simply teaches me to slow down, to connect with myself and be more mindful in everyday life; and that learning was a game changer.
Authenticity means, for me, a balance and aligning your life with what is true for you. It’s how you feel on the inside, not necessarily about what’s going on on the outside. It’s an acceptance that life and experience will always involve light and shade and to not let your thoughts, your ego, run the show.
I became curious and started to study, learn and practice. I’ve been running Horizon Inspired for a year and a half now and offer written inspiration through articles in magazines, blog sites and though my own blog. I offer one to one integrated coaching and meditation support and wellbeing retreats. I hope to offer support and inspiration that is real, down to earth and impactful. It’s for those who aren’t willing to settle, who might need support in coming home to themselves… and, where possible, it’s about offering wellbeing without the wankiness!
2. What is your deep reason for choosing the path you're taking? Your "why"?
I completed a questionnaire years ago when I was working and living in London, feeling totally miserable and desperately searching for my ‘why'. I took a screen-shot of a sentence the site produced and then forgot all about it because, at the time, it made no sense to me at all. Then in Spring last year, when I was looking for images for the first incarnation of the Horizon Inspired website, I stumbled across that screen-shot image. It said ‘Your imperative is to work directly with individuals to create environments and experiences to help them elevate their game’. I was literally stopped in my tracks - That is exactly what I am trying to achieve!
I believe that you are your own best teacher, you are the only one who can allow yourself to be happy and live a life fulfilled. There is so much pressure to do, be, have in todays society and it’s such a load of bullshit. We seems to be loosing connection with what is real, what life is all about and what is true for us. We only need to glance at stats on mental health, physical health or reflect on our own experiences to know this is very real. When you are happy, you help others feel happy. When you are calm, you help others to be calm. When you except who you are, you find yourself home. And although that is working progress for all of us, it’s about taking responsibility for ourselves.
When I completed the questionnaire those years ago, my answers produce quite accurately what I would now describe as my ‘why’, I was just so disconnected with myself, unable to really listen to myself then, that the sentence didn’t make sense to me. It was meditation, coaching, mindfulness, practice and experience that helped and is still helping me on this journey (there will always be so much more to learn). It is such a genuine pleasure now to be able to support others on their own. We sometimes just need to be given the permission to pause, the tools to listen to ourselves and the support to know and believe in our own worth.
3. What is the big dream, or legacy you're creating?
To support, inspire and encourage others to live authentically. To support those who have a niggling feeling there must be more to life, who need support to believe in themselves or who've lost touch with themselves somewhere along the way to really get to know, love and accept themselves exactly as they are.
The big dream is for the book I am currently writing to be published and to continue to offer one to one support and retreats all over the world.
4. What piece of advice would you give to your younger self?
Follow your bliss - any age and every day!
5. What companies/projects inspire you?
Authors Eckhart Tolle, Osho, Michael Neill, Jeff Foster, Julia Cameron. Genuinely, projects that are from the heart, honest, ethical and have positive social or individual impact.
Everyday people who are passionate about what they do, what they believe in and that help make a positive impact on this world inspire me. The couple, Liz and Bob, who own the ranch I volunteered at in Mexico after I quit my job those years ago, are a big inspiration for me. They built their business and home on pure hard work, incredible (incredible!) stories and love.
6. What does your industry/cornwall/location need to see more of?
For me, there are two things that I find clunky about this industry. On one end of the scale you have the misconception that ‘Wellbeing' is about sexy yoga pants, shiny wholesome white-teeth smiles and being #blessed ! A false promotion and facade of what true wellbeing/yoga/meditation/happiness is all about. Or the other end of the scale, some traditional approaches I find so unapproachable, non-inclusive, and preachy that their way is the way, and totally contradictory to the essence of the teaching.
I am so enthused to be surrounded by some amazing wellbeing businesses in Cornwall and to be part of a culture that promotes true health and wellbeing - with open doors and a respect for the fact we are all different and that’s perfectly ok. Wellbeing is 'being well', which might look very different for me to what it does for you. I don’t believe there is one ‘right way’ and it’s about using these ancient and modern tools to find a sense of wellbeing for and within yourself.
So I guess I’m saying, the wellbeing industry itself could ironically benefit from a little more authenticity and a little less judgement.
7. What’s the most exciting thing you’re working on now?
Writing regularly for Breathe Magazine is a real treat for me right now but the most exciting thing would have to be preparing for a retreat in Mexico in April. It's taking place on the off-grid, remote ranch where I worked and volunteered after I'd quit my job back those years back. I can’t tell you how exciting and powerful it is to be going back to the place where it all began. To be heading back there with a small group of retreat guests and to be supported by one of my favourite yoga teacher on the planet (a local teacher Aimee Stapleford) is a pretty epic thing - argh, I just can’t wait!!
8. What problem in the world do you see that you’re fixing?
The problem I believe to be a belief that fulfilment is found 'out there' in stuff, things, people, in the future. I hope to facilitate experiences and reminders to support others to remember the beauty and power in the present moment and within ourselves.
9. If you could go back, what's one thing you would have done differently?
Nothing - 'connecting the dots’ looking back (as Steve Jobs puts it in his commencement speech to Stanford University) helps me to truly understand that it all works out as it’s meant to, in the end... even when the lessons are horribly tough.
10. Who has been the most help to you along the way? And why?
This might sound cheesy but genuinely all the amazing people who I have worked with one to one, who have come on retreats or who gets in touch after reading a blog. I have so much love for each and every one of them and they have been the biggest help because they are why this whole thing exists and they decide which way it grows.
The retreats wouldn’t be able to take place without the amazing Yoga teachers, massage therapists, cooks, specialists, venue owners, support volunteers who’ve been part of the team. Holy shit they are such a dream team, it literally makes me pop with love thinking about them all!
After starting Horizon Inspired, an amazing amount of synchronistic meetings have happened. One person in particular is a lady called Maggie Kay. In the early stages I took some big risks and sold pretty much everything I owned, including my sofa. It wasn’t until the lovely lady was leaving my flat with her new sofa that she told me, very much in passing, what the sofa would be used for - her own meditations, workshops and retreats. Since that day Maggie has been a mentor, a coach and I trained as a coach through her. I’m so grateful for that sofa selling day!
And finally an old boss, Steven George. He was the director of a team I was in whilst working for a national charity in London. He was and is, hands down, the best leader I have ever worked with and he offered me quite possibly the best bit of advise in the early stages. I had sent him a long email laying out my plans and fears about not knowing where to start and if I could even do it anyway. He replied with just two simple words: ‘Start Somewhere’.