In conversation: The Power of Storytelling With Founder of Anyonegirl, Yasmine Ganley.

May 3, 2023

Yasmine Ganley caught our attention as she seems to be doing it all! She is the founder of online platform, publisher, mother, and brand consultant to just name a few of the many hats she wears. We were curious to hear how she supports her nervous system in times of stress and where she gathers inspiration for her beautiful writings. 

You seem to have a lot going on, can you please share with us what you do exactly? I have a few on-going roles at the moment, I am the editor-in-chief of ISLAND magazine, and, publisher of anyonebooks (the most recent book is a recipe book / not a recipe book by Marjory Sweet), I also consult / do marketing and storytelling for brands such as, nodi, Tessuti, sans [ceuticals], and Anaak, and I take photos sometimes too. I am also curating the Architecture and Design Film Festival programme this year with Rialto cinemas. 

What does a typical day look like for you?
There's a slim window of time between taking my kids to and from kindergarten and school when I get to work! So I tend to book my in-person meetings / shoots during this time. I mostly always do a little emailing in the evening, too, once my kids are in bed. I like having breakfast and dinner together at the table, just us chatting and being with each other. After dinner there is new energy, dancing, playing, a walk to our cul-de-sac, and then it's bath time, which is the slowest part of the day: lights are dim and stories are told in bed. 

Where do you find inspiration for writing?
It either comes at a time when I get space to let my thoughts wander, I'll fall into a place that has something interesting for me to consider and mould. I like to think a lot about my teenage years as they hold that loaded quality that has cringe-energy or something too tender. Or it is completely random, like on a postcard that has been mailed to me, a combination of words that I overhear. Or perhaps it is a few things put together in that mash-y way that only you can do in your own head with images and feelings that are truly your own, like you're seeing them afresh and from afar. I take a lot of voice recordings in the car. (A kind of torture to listen back on). This auto-pilot time spent driving seems good for me in terms of working things out. 
Can you elaborate on the power of storytelling?
Stories are great because they're as much about the writer as they are about the subject, and in turn, the story will also reflect the reader. You will read and absorb the parts you need. 
What are your favourite local plants of New Zealand?
I love Kawakawa - it is glossy-green, heart-shaped, and has a vibrant stack of health benefits to its name. I also love our native hibiscus, Puarangi, so delicate, it's the only thing that can be baby-yellow and get away with it. 

How do you support your nervous system?
Great question. I wish I could do more! I think about this often, as I have been on a long health journey since having my first baby. I was diagnosed with hyperthyroidism, and six years later I'm told I actually have the autoimmune disorder, graves. My naturopath was talking about which mushrooms would be good to include, and I had the realisation that, when buying mushrooms in the past, I had always gone for the blends that supported focus and energy - words that my system did not want or need at all! I thought, shit I am not listening to my body. But it is good to learn. Some soothing things I do for myself are yoga everyday (I love the way it feels internally - strength to the ground and energy up), we grow vegetables, fruit and herbs in our garden (which I am more obsessed with to as years go by), I love reading great writing (and I love underlining all the brilliant sentences and combinations of words so I can come back to them later), and I have started to carve out time just for me, a few hours in the week to spend in a way that nourishes me, maybe a massage, maybe a visit to the library, maybe climbing up a hill. It's funny how taking time away from work can be so beneficial to the job at hand. 

How do you incorporate scent into your daily life?
I love wearing essential oils. My sister makes me personalised blends which are delicious - clary sage, I could lick it off my wrist, inhaling that in the morning is healing. I love incense in the afternoon, mostly on the weekends when the vibe is good. We have this cherry daphne plant underneath our deck that lets off an intoxicating scent at dusk, just as the day gets cool - my partner and I stand at the door doing these long sniffs and talk about how great the smell is. 


Are there any ways in which you are giving back to the planet? We compost, of course, we look after our garden and feed the soil. We teach our kids the strange and beautiful attributes of nature. 

Your philosophy to share with our community. 
Be curious. Be kind. Go outside. 


MORNING RITUAL: Porridge and honey with my kids 


CURRENTLY READING/ WATCHING/ LISTENING: Masha Tupitsyn, Time Tells / listening: Sylvie, Sylvie 

ONE THING YOU ARE MOVING TOWARDS/ AWAY FROM: Towards: enjoyment Away from: too fast

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