I believe that it’s possible to go from feeling isolated, disconnected and directionless, to living a full, happy, meaningful and deeply connected life – even without a romantic relationship. But getting there takes commitment, openness and courage. Commitment to self- reflection and introspection. Openness to undoing old habits, and learning / practicing new skills. And courage to be vulnerable, and to keep persevering, even when it feels uncomfortable. How do I know? Because I’ve done it.
I’m Hannah, and I’ve spent many years leading high performing teams across the public and voluntary sectors, both here in the UK and internationally. Since 2017 I’ve run The Living Well Alone Project, providing information, advice and community for the growing global population of people who are embarking on solo living. Through the Project, I’ve learnt a lot about myself - and about the lives of other people who live alone and / or are single - including the importance that high quality friendships play in a happy, healthy solo life.
Today, as a UK based ‘clarity and connection coach,’ I help my clients find the confidence to build thriving, purposeful, successful solo lives, as well as building authentic, emotionally intimate, sustainable non-romantic relationships which serve them in this endeavour. In other words, deep friendships that stand the test of time. It’s wonderful seeing people I’ve worked with find fulfilment in their lives ‘as they are now’- but getting to a point where I could coach others to connection success wasn’t something that happened overnight.
As a teen and into my twenties, I was driven, but often felt uncomfortable in my own skin. I knew how to get ahead academically and later professionally, and I threw myself into my work – it was how I knew to get praise and positive attention.
But outside of work, I often felt exhausted, disconnected and alone. I had good people around me, but struggled to build balanced, healthy friendships, and often looked to others to set direction for me. Instead, I spent most of my energy on trying to ‘fit in’ – shutting down the parts of myself that I assumed other people wouldn’t like, and trying my hardest not to upset anyone with my opinions, wants or needs. I’d learnt, somewhere along the line, that it was my job to make other people feel okay, and I lacked the confidence to stand up for who I really was, or what I needed. Rather than asking for help when I needed it, I dealt with everything alone.
I was exhausted, and starting to ask ‘what’s the point?’ – of any of it.
I’ve worked with amazing people who are exactly where I was. People who are conscientious, thoughtful, resilient and kind – but struggling with the skills and confidence to chart their own course, or to create a circle of connections that are positive, giving and supportive. It’s easy to distract yourself with everyday ‘stuff’ – and maybe even to convince yourself that things are as good as they’re ever going to be. But what if deep down, you know they're not?
In the last few years I've been on a journey of stepping into my own power, putting myself in the driving seat of my own life. Inspired by the amazing Brene Brown, I’ve practiced vulnerability - learning how to show up authentically in a way that’s much more in keeping with my natural energy, and how to be there for other people without exhausting myself. It hasn’t been easy – I’ve had to let some people go who just weren’t good for me, and I've learnt the importance of setting and holding strong emotional boundaries. And I’ve grown in self-awareness too – taking more and more responsibility for my health and happiness.
I now go through every day completely secure in knowing that even though I don’t have a romantic relationship at the moment, I'm deeply cared for and loved. I have the kind of friends who would fly across the world for me (and I for them). Through ‘6 Weeks to Clarity and Connection' I’m on a mission to help other people experience what’s possible when they step confidently into a buzzing, vibrant, brilliant future.