There aren’t many 22 year old CEO’s out there, but Nicole Gibson is a pretty special human. After suffering from anorexia and depression, she founded the Rogue and Rouge Foundation to help young people overcome their own body image and self esteem issues. Here, she shares her journey.
“Don’t compete against other girls, support and love them.”
I always had an intense feeling of purpose. I knew I was here to change the world.
From a young age, this energy burned in me like a fire – but it often caused me to feel misunderstood. As I grew up I realised the world doesn’t always support your dreams and passions – it tells you they’re impossible. Anxiety and depression became a part of my everyday reality.
I left mainstream school at 14
I got accepted into an excellence academy for theatre, but I thought I had to be perfect to be deserving of my dream – which lead me down the dark road of anorexia.
If you fixate on your body, you neglect your mind and spirit
Your body is only one aspect of you. One of the hardest-hitting things someone said to me during my struggle was: “you are not your illness.” It’s difficult to ignore something that has such a strong influence over you, making you feel like it’s controlling your thoughts – but it’s not who you truly are. You’re a powerful, incredible person.
Recovering from anorexia, I faced my worse demons
I saw these flaws in our mental health system. On my 18th birthday I founded the Rogue & Rouge Foundation to tackle mental health in a different way. My mission is to equip young people with the skills to overcome adversity and support each other through their challenges.
We’re the rebels of mental health
We believe every person has the ability to breakthrough their conditions and limitations to thrive and chase their dreams. We run lots of programs, all inspired by the 100 000 young people across Australia we worked with during our National Tour “Champions for Change” in 2013.
Do it all for your dream (whatever it may be)
Find your passion. Nothing is scarier that the first step – so leap! Everyone will tell you something is impossible, but you don’t need their validation. This is all a playground and it’s up to you to navigate your own game.
My best friends are my battery charger when I’m feeling flat
Girls are an incredible support to one another, and that energy is so important in life. Don’t compete against other girls, support and love them.
If I ruled the world…
I’d break down all the nations and show people we are all in this together. And I’d buy my own island so that I could go surfing every day.
Supre and Headspace have partnered to stop bullying
Find out more here.