Ep.77 Liberte Free to Be, 

 with inspiring wild swimmer and writer Sara Barnes



This weeks guest fills my instagram feed with so much daily inspiration her passion for wild swimming, writing and photography shines through her work as a self employed editor.

Sara Barnes is based in the beautiful and rural Lake District where she finds an endless source of inspiration. I find out why wild swimming in remote places has really stolen her heart. Sara is such an interesting an engaging woman and we had so much to talk about. 

I started wild swimming last year during lockdown and found it exhilarating and very calming.

Subjects covered-

  • Rural isolation and loneliness: "not only is it hard to meet a partner living in rural Cumbria, working from home and being a single parent, but you feel a total disconnect from the rest of the world. I want to be part of the conversation, part of the bigger picture." 
  • Lockdown life: "when we were locked down in March 2020 I thought, oh, now everyone else is like me and suddenly I didn't feel lonely anymore and became far more connected because my daughter was at home every day, everyone was in the same boat. I had the tools to survive and I thrived actually! It was a paradigm shift for me. Wild swimming and posting my swims with a story make me feel part of a community and I have made friends online and in real life that way."
  • Body confidence: "As a wild swimmer and an active Instagrammer (@bumblebarnes) I often post photos of me in my swimsuit, so I have had to learn to be objective about my body and admit maybe I look good. It's not about being big headed, more being confident and allowing that confidence to shine through. It's strange: I am comfortable with my body, I don't think I've got any major hang ups, to me nudity is natural (in appropriate situations!). But, as a naturally shy person, who hates having photos taken by anyone but my daughter when she gets me to model for her, presenting my body to social media has been a tough journey in itself."
  • Wild swimming - "how it makes me feel, what benefits I have derived from it - how it has released my creative spirit and ability, brought me through loneliness, loss of friendships and most recently grief of losing mum"
  • Becoming braver-. "Wild swimming makes me feel brave, alive and the best I can be and is the ultimate dichotomy: it brings out the child in me and the sensual woman. If I can be brave enough to walk naked into 3 degree water on my own I can be brave enough to face people who want to put me down, difficult situations or anything else I might need to deal with.

Sara also shares some great advice for those wanting to try wild swimming for the first time.
There's lots of helpful resources on the following websites https://www.outdoorswimmingsociety.com and https://www.wildswimming.co.uk/outdoor-swimming-society/. You can also search Facebook for any local wild swimming groups near you.

Go and say hello to Sara on instagram @bumblebarnes
You can also find out more about Sara https://bumbleworks.wordpress.com

I'll be back next week but in the meantime .....

Keeping being fabulous Rachel x 


Come and say hello over on Instagram @rachelperu1 , Twitter @rachel_peru and Facebook @stepoutofthebubble 
Have you joined the Time To Shine Facebook group yet?

(Music credited to Scott Holmes- By Big Adventure) 

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