Skip to main content

No results found

Curiosities, Perspectives

Great British Eccentrics

divider
Screen Shot 2021 04 01 at 13.13.09 nxcgnz

So, it feels like this might be it, a re-emergence of the world, bleary eyed, full of sourdough, and some of us have slightly more to love than when we retreated into our bubbles last March. During this time, we have navigated our way to finding things out about ourselves that we had long since forgotten or hidden. We have cycled through differing degrees of struggle over the last year and although we have been encouraged to find community, we have been conditioned to segregate and be individualistic.

My vertical thought for this Best of British month is if there’s one thing our fine land is good at, it’s that we are quietly proud to lead the world in eccentrics.

Eccentric doesn’t necessarily mean weird, it’s actually derived from Latin and simply means ‘away from the centre’. So why embrace our inner eccentricity and how could that even help us going forward?

Even if you aren’t the 1 in 5,000 true eccentrics you can still embrace your eccentric tendencies. For example, I don’t eat anything flavoured pink… think about it and it makes sense, I have a fondness for Garfield, and have spent the last 12 months in furry socks.

Psychiatrist David Weeks, in their work ‘Eccentrics: A Study of Sanity and Strangeness’, noticed that eccentrics tend to be healthier and significantly happier along with being diverse yet having commonality of characteristics. There can be safety found in non-conformity and the abundance of creativity, accompanied by the curious and innate ability to be playful with ideas and concepts. With eccentricity comes benefits such as being less likely to visit a doctor, more likely to live a longer happy life, and a suggestion of a better functioning immune system. Weeks found that eccentrics tend to be optimistic people with a highly developed feeling of difference, a streak of idealism, mischievous sense of humour, and drive to make the world a better place. 

With this ability to think, look and feel outside the box, to throw jelly at a wall and see if it sticks, to push the envelope of ideas and conventions, eccentrics could hold the key to everyone’s happiness.

There will always be people who expect you to toe the line. Well, by choosing to embrace your own inner eccentric you could be doing everyone a favour by leading us away from conformity towards acceptance of individuality. So, who could we aspire to and use as mentors for our inner eccentricity? Look at Grayson Perry and their wife Philippa Perry who happens to be a psychotherapist.

What do you have about you, that you may have discovered during lockdown, that you can embrace and love? Those quirks, those things that make you, you.

Be away from the centre. Be happy. Be eccentric.

RECOMMENDED

Screen Shot 2022 02 15 at 10.05.17
Tue 1 Mar 2022

Gen Z Frenzy

Polite Passivity: The Root of Bad Feminism

Having recently engaged in far too long a chat with a man who prefaced our conversation with, ‘we probably won’t get along, because you seem like a leftie feminist’, afterwards I pondered: ‘why did I bother to carry on talking to him?’  

Screen Shot 2021 12 02 at 13.33.30
Tue 4 Jan 2022

Gen Z Frenzy

Clicking Snooze On 2022

Whether intentionally or not, Christmas, New Year, and that weird bit in between, have adopted the same energy as that of the end of a really long day. I think we can all agree too, that 2021 gave off big Monday vibes. By that rule, January should hereby be referred to as the 6am of the year, and in my opinion it’s a right-off.

m3VYoeVQ
Tue 4 Jan 2022

James Haskell

Unreconstructed Male

Former rugby union player, author, music producer, podcast personality and 2019 Jungle contestant, James Haskell is clearly a man with fingers in many pies. I got in touch to discuss his second book Ruck Me, I’ve Written Another Book, but couldn’t resist touching on a few clearly controversial topics… 

shutterstock 792696541 wgofsx
Thu 19 Aug 2021

Oxford University students take on the highest peak in Africa

to support local charity’s 20th anniversary

Four Oxford University students will be climbing Kilimanjaro, the highest peak in Africa and the world's tallest freestanding mountain, in celebration of the Nasio Trust's 20th Anniversary.