MODERN PRIORITIES: KATHRYN PARSONS OF DECODED
It's never been as empowering to be a woman – but it's also never been as complicated. The modern, connected woman carries with her plenty of expectations. In this blog series, we take a peek into the digital habits and modern priorities of some of the power women we admire. They show us it's possible to do it all, live well and inspire others everyday.
Kathryn Parsons is the CEO of Decoded, a business driven to propel a new generation of individuals around the world to thrive in the tech world through coaching and education. She is a self-proclaimed entrepreneur, educator, feminist, as well as a campaigner for code and a digital economy– but that doesn't mean she doesn't know when to switch off.
What does your morning ritual look like?
My ideal morning includes waking up to sunshine and an expansive view. Sunshine can't always be guaranteed, but views are very important to me. A beautiful view reminds me to think about the art of what is possible, how we are mere specks of dust in the universe, and what I am going to do that day to put something positive into the world and other people's lives. We try to ensure we teach in beautiful spaces ideally with panoramic views at Decoded. We promise Digital Enlightenment through transformational education experiences. The potential to create, transform people and learn something new thrills me every single morning. I like to meditate and focus on this for at least 15 minutes, dance to some 80s tunes and have a bath when I wake up. I won't look at my phone for at least an hour.
What apps or tools do you use to help you be on your A-game?
I love Benedict Evans' blog on technology for a brilliant summary of stats, stories and news from the heart of Silicon Valley; Tim Ferris' podcast on life-hacking for inspiring and practical tips on mastery, learning and optimal performance from some of the world's best business people and academics; and Product Hunt to be inspired by the creativity possible within the world of tech.
Top tip for preparing for a busy day ahead?
Make sure to put aside two hours on a Sunday evening to switch off.
What are your big audacious life goals?
Make sure your time is focused on making it happen. Plan your week: it's your life.
How do you make time to switch off from technology?
Decoded's whole business is focused on demystifying technology, so we get pretty deep when it comes to tech. We delve into the worlds of code, data, hacking, VR, AI and beyond. It's essential that we take time to remove ourselves by confiscating phones, switching off email, going on a hike in the woods. We believe that we need to be in control of technology, not vice versa.
How has social media helped you in your career?
I'm light touch, but think it's magical. We started Decoded with a credit card loan, a £27 marketing budget and a ton of belief. Our work has touched hundreds of thousands of people thanks to our amazing alumni, word of mouth, and the power of social media.
Do you feel like you portray who you really are online?
No! But then again I'm not sure I know who I really am anyway, so I'm fine with that.
What does 'digital balance' mean to you?
It means realising technology is addictive and resisting falling down the rabbit hole. Being mindful in real and virtual life. Feeding your mind with positive and productive ideas, images and knowledge from the people you spend time with in real life to people you follow on Twitter.