INSPIRING OUTDOOR CONNECTIONS

MEET: OUR FOUNDER EUNIQUE DEEANN (GET PROFILED)

, 2018, January 21 /

#SOMESTORIESINSPIRE

IMAGE CREDIT: ALISHA OCHOA

MEET OUR FOUNDER: EUNIQUE DEEANN

STATS //

IMAGE CREDIT: MICHAEL WEYBRET

Q:

Age / Location / Passion

A:

33 /Leucadia, CA /Writing, Yoga, hiking, camping, road trips +  cooking

Q:

Also stoked about?

A:

Trail running, bouldering, surfing, free diving, sailing and anything that gets me outside.

Q:

Favorite place to get outside?

A:

Quick escape: Beacon’s Beach, Sunset Cliffs or Elfin Forest

Quick Road trips: Joshua Tree, Idyllwild  + Baja (new fav)

I also have enjoyed Red Rock outside Vegas, Southern Utah, Oaxaca, Costa Rica and most recently Jackson, WY.

Q:

Go to Gear?

A:

Reef Safe Sunscreen (I’m really into Avasol for every day and SurfDurt+ Raw Elements for active, Brooks Running shoes, a good pair of yoga pants (currently, Amari has one of my favorites), a headlamp, notebook + pen and my camera (currently: a Canon 5D)

 

GET PROFILED Q + A //

Q:

What’s your story?

A:

I grew up in Midland, a smaller town in west Texas. My parents divorced when I was 7 which gave me two families. Each was extremely different and shaped so much of the roots of who I am today. I spent most of my childhood with 3 of my brothers who bullied me into toughing up + taught me the importance of family, friendship, and having each other’s back. My parents worked a lot, were strict and had a lot of rules, but there was never a shortage of knowing that it came from love. We went to church every week, ate meals together on Sundays + camped and fished in the summers. Both my dad and stepmom gave a lot of opinions and guidance to what they felt was the best, but they also gave us room to spread our wings and learn life on our own and have always been there when we needed them. My mom + stepdad had a farm in North Texas that I stayed at during the summers and holidays where I learned to care for animals and what it’s like to get to know the land. My mom was spiritual and taught me a lot of things about relationships with nature. I enjoyed my times here and always found a lot of peace and connection to the earth and the power it holds.

Looking back, there’s a lot of my childhood that I’ve archived, but it’s pretty incredible when a conversation happens that sparks a certain memory. I know that my love, passion + connection to the outdoors comes from these simple moments. Playing football in an open field + catching fish with my brothers, hopping hay bails and caring for the barn in the summers.

I started taking road trips with my childhood best friend anywhere that we could get to + back before my curfew as soon as we could drive. I met up with her in Dallas to finish college + we moved together to Miami a few years later, just because. I transitioned from a career in Health + Fitness to Brand Marketing. I’ve worked the past 12 years building beverage + consumer brands into a lifestyle. A couple years back, I started focusing on a few of my personal hobbies and passions and that’s where and how Stranded on Land came to life.

Q:

What’s something coming up this year that you’re stoked about?

A:

I’m not super big into planning but this year I’m working on committing to a few. I’ve already taken two trips that I’ve had on the list since last year and have hopes to take a road trip up to Alaska and make it out of the country. I have SE Asia on the radar. I started exploring sharing my personal creative writing last fall + am looking forward to continuing this project + diving into a few other creative collaborations through Stranded this year. It’s something I’ve wanted to do for years and am pretty excited, and admittedly I’ve been a little nervous to take the leap and make it happen.

Q:

Who inspires you?

A:

I’m inspired by everyday people. I work in the field and travel often so I meet a lot of new people every single day. I’ve learned to quickly connect to people pretty deeply which has awarded me tons of great stories and experiences. Every day, I meet someone who’s doing something interesting and seeing the spark that they get when they realize you’re actually interested in listening to what they’re excited about amps me up. You don’t have to do big things to be inspiring. All you have to do is be true to what you’re passionate about + follow that and you’ll impact the people who get the opportunity to see and experience the results. It’s pretty incredible. I can’t tell you the number of times that one small conversation or moment with someone has left a lasting impression on me or even changed the way I am living. I seek these moments every chance I get.

Q:

What is Stranded on Land

A:

Stranded on Land is a platform rooted in exploring to create experiences that inspire. We tell stories, collaborate on experiences and curate guides + content to inspire getting outside the grind + exploring more. I’m passionate about conscious living, giving back + educating  + inspiring people to do the same and have been creating an outlet for others who can relate to this. It’s not about a lifestyle or an escape from your every day, but about making the things you’re most passionate about a part of your day-to-day. For me, it’s in the outdoors, travel, art + culture, living responsibly and consciously + supporting others finding the space and courage to do the same. I found this outside + in transit, so that’s what I talk about most.

It all started as a passion project and outlet for me to be able to share some of my personal experiences. It’s grown organically into a place that feels like home for me. And something that other people have found a connection to it too, which is pretty rad. It’s been beautiful to meet people doing cool things + having the opportunity to collaborate with them. Share their stories and hear how they overcome challenges and push past their own fears. To provide an outlet for other creatives who aren’t quite sure exactly what they want to do or how they want to do it but that know they want to be involved in something bigger.  And to be building a community of people curious about the things we’re sharing, it’s humbling and liberating. Admittedly, I’m quite flighty and often get bored after I accomplish something to a certain level, but Stranded has so many layers + possibilities that I’m still as excited about it as the first day I started.

Q:

Why is what you’re doing important?

A:

I think the most important thing you can do in a lifetime is to find your truth and then live it fully once you do. Not all of us have the luxury to quit life and take a year to travel and detach from everyday responsibilities. But all of us do have the option to take a few to get outside the grind. It doesn’t have to be extravagant or lengthy or costly all the time. It’s a matter of making the space to reconnect with what’s really important to you. That’s how this began. Being unhappy takes as much work, sometimes more than being happy, so why not direct your efforts toward what you’re really here to fulfill.

There are so many people living similar lives but completely differently. And so many people who’ve figured out ways to succeed on their own terms, on the weekends or in their free time. One conversation can transform someone else’s way of living. One experience can shift their perspective and ultimately change the world they live in as a result. I’m not saving lives, preventing disasters or curing diseases. But I’m striving to make the most positive impact on the people’s lives I touch and hopefully Stranded on Land is growing a community of people who are doing the same.

IMAGE CREDIT: ABE RAMIREZ

Q:

When you’re not doing all things Stranded, what are you up to?

A:

I spend time daily writing, reading and working really hard to stay find balance. I really enjoy cooking for friends, playing with plants and just getting in my car and driving for a while. I equally enjoy stomping through the city streets as I do caking my sneakers with dirt and getting pummeled by waves.

Q:

How have you balanced having your own brand, a full-time job  + making time to get outside the grind?

A:

I’m by nature anxious, a perfectionist + a workaholic, so I’m constantly having to check myself on making sure to make time for me, friends + family and to just fully sink in moments and enjoying them. I wake up early and go to bed late a lot of nights. I schedule at least one day a week to do something that is unpaid, unplanned and un-demanded by other people.  Some weeks, I’m only able to take a few hours, others days at a time. But being able to make this part my weekly routine has afforded me not only the opportunity to feel more grounded and well rounded as a human but also has provided me the rewards to see and do a lot of things that a lot of people living similar lifestyles to me are not.

I spend a lot of time day-to-day with people and do a lot of juggling managing time, expectations  + tasks. Whenever I have the opportunity to, I like to just get away by myself for a few, wherever and however that happens and enjoy doing something unplanned. It’s the best way that I’ve discovered not only what’s most important to me, but to really see how big and small everything in the world is.

I think what I’ve learned to do is say yes more, no matter how tired, stressed or unexcited about any particular thing I am initially, I almost always find happiness 5 minutes in. And if not, it always makes for a good story in the end.

EUNIQUEDEEANN_STRANDEDONLAND6
IMAGE CREDIT: KATE NEVÉ
IMAGE CREDIT: GABACCIA

 Q:

What piece of advice do you have for someone who is curious about the outdoors but hasn’t taken the plunge?

A:

Start small and do something that you can do on your own. It’s easiest to make the excuse that you can’t do something because you don’t have anyone to do it with. I did that for many years. And then one day, I just said fuck it and started doing things by myself. I started small with beach runs and morning shore swims. Road trips to places that were close enough to go to and back on the same day.

I learned that if you want to do something, you have to put yourself in the environment. You might find a surfing buddy in a nightclub, but most likely you’ll find them at a local shop, on the beach or out in the water. You have to get over the fear of being uncomfortable. Truthfully, the discomfort you feel from not being good at something, we’ve all been there and we all know what it feels like. I’ve learned to be uncomfortable all the time, I just put myself out there and feel really awkward for a few by admitting that I suck at something but want to try. People more times than you would think are stoked to share with you something that they’ve found happiness in.

I’m no expert + definitely am not the bravest person. But I challenge my fears daily and every time I do, it’s proven that one thing I felt terrified about isn’t as scary as I thought. The internet + social media are great resources for information and has given me lots of ideas of places to check out. I read people’s advice, ask lots of questions + take extra caution if I’m going out on my own or with someone I don’t know very well. Rent or borrow gear. Buy it used or on sale. You don’t have to have the best or tackle the biggest to start. You just have to do something to overcome that initial initiation and go from there.

Q:

How do you stay constantly inspired and motivated?

A:

I spend as much time alone as I do with other people. I am fueled by socializing. Listening to people’s stories, sharing experiences and absorbing their advice. But I make time to put this into action. I limit my absorption of things that I can’t control + try to spend my time and energy on things that I can. I’m also learning to take a break from things so that I can get a different perspective. I think that’s really important.

IMAGE CREDIT: POLARIZED STUDIOS
IMAGE CREDIT: SCOTT KITCHEN
IMAGE CREDIT: KATE NEVÉ

Q:

Who or what first inspired you to incorporate writing + the outdoors in your life?

A:

A few years back I dated a guy who lived on a sailboat. This was one of the best years of my life. He gently pushed me to do things that I would have never tried before and taught me a lot about nature, the outdoors + how the things that I would get worked up over or freak out about weren’t that big of a deal. I learned to try things that made me uncomfortable and trust that everything would be okay. I spent a lot of time on the sailboat and started writing about the things that I experienced here, which was how Stranded on Land came to life and where my writing began to transform from solely emotionally driven to storytelling.

Q:

What is the key to taking on the responsibility to inspire others through online + offline experiences?

A:

For me- honesty, positivity and staying committed to the vision + mission and not being steered by wherever bandwagons are rolling. I’m most inspired by perseverance, passion and finding the beauty in even the darkest places. I know that there are others out there who feel the same + they’re my people.

It’s easy to complain or to talk about all the shit stirring in the world. But, it’s not easy when you’re feeling this deep in your heart to keep true to the bigger picture. Knowing that everything comes in ebbs and flows and that there are plenty of people talking about the struggles of the world reminds me, that’s not what I’m here to do. I admire and respect those people, their missions and support a lot of the work being done in my own time + ways. But my place and purpose is to help people find inspiration, motivation, and courage to do the things they’re curious and excited about.

Q:

What is Eunique up to five years from today?

A:

I rarely know what Eunique is up to 5 days from now. I have some things I’d like to accomplish in my lifetime, live mostly one day at a time. I’m excited about wherever this journey takes me.

Q:

You are all about expressing yourself through writing. Can you talk a bit more about what you write about the most, what you definitely will not catch yourself writing about, and what your goals are as a writer?

A:

I write a lot about love, in various forms. Through poetry, through my personal journal posts on the site and even through the reviews + guides. I feel deeply and think people are afraid to express this so this is something I spend a lot of time on. You will likely never catch me writing in anger, fear or about mainstream topics that are trending. I just don’t relate and think that it all gets lost in the chaos of emotions that are stirring in a moment. Long-term, I’m hoping to write a couple books and dig a bit deeper to elevate the stories told.

Q:

Tell us one Instagram account that you’re crazy about + why?

A:

There are so many! I love beautiful photos, I love raw storytelling and I love funny, original content. I follow a lot of friends who are chasing dreams, artists and brands who are making efforts to do good in the world.  Digital media is curated, but for me, that’s okay, because I can find my own ups and downs. I use Instagram mainly for inspiration and as a reminder that there are communities of people who are following their passions, daily.

Q:

We hear you are a great camp cook. What’s your favorite thing to cook while camping out?

A:

Aspiring. It’s one of my life goals to be able to craft delicious, healthy meals outdoors. I am just getting started experimenting and exploring and hoping to dive more into it in the upcoming months. Tacos are always a go to. Breakfast, lunch and dinner and you can use the same ingredients to make pizza, quesadillas or scrambles.

I want to try some bigger feats like soups, whole fish, and cast iron cooking. I’m interested in figuring out how to make healthier, quick meals outdoors + on the road – using the same ingredients to make a variety of meals and sharing this with those curious how to do it also.

Thanks for sharing your story with us. Keep exploring + inspiring. 

 

xx,

Stranded on Land

 

A’s + Images provided compliments of Eunique Deeann. Edited by Gabaccia.

KEEP UP WITH E IN REAL TIME. FOLLOW HER ON INSTAGRAM AT @EUNIQUEDEEANN

 

 

FOLLOW US ON INSTAGRAM AT @STRANDEDONLAND + TAG #SOMESTORIESINSPIRE
TO JOIN US IN INSPIRING TRAVEL + THE OUTDOORS AS PART OF THE ROUTINE.

About Gabaccia

Conscious entrepreneur, brand guru, blogger, web designer, creator, poet, director, lover, organizer, dancer, hero, prankster, muse, performer, rockstar, minimalist.

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