The pressure to introduce Elizabeth Day, when her infamous introductions to her guests on her brilliant and award-winning podcast ‘How to Fail’ are so incredibly warm and expansively generous, is daunting. Whilst she describes the facts as ‘podcaster and author,’ her skill set, and job description is much further reaching than that. From hosting Radio 4’s Open Book and Sky Arts Book Club Live, her four published novels and books on failure ‘How to Fail’ and ‘Failosophy’, her weekly column in You Magazine and the many commissions she receives to write (award-winning journalism), host, present and comment make her a broadcaster in the truest sense.
Bookish and clever, and undeniably beautiful, she also has that rare gift of communication and empathy, somehow with her super-human accomplishments and intimidatingly gorgeous looks, she still manages to be relatable. Perhaps it is because she can speak with authority on a range of topics from Tudor History, to the Real Housewives oeuvre with equal enthusiasm that makes her so charming. With all her undeniable success, her specialist subject has ironically become failure. She explains ‘I actually think that when we fail, we learn so much more than when everything is going right and that the vulnerability of failure and embracing that is what connects us with our fellow human beings’
In these challenging times, we spoke to wise Elizabeth about her coping tactics for staying sane, nurturing herself (hint: it involves lots of sleep and watching TV) and she insightfully pointed out that ‘wellness is about finding out what works for you rather than believing that someone else will give you the keys to feeling better about yourself’. With the mental health crisis raging alongside the global pandemic, we would perhaps all do well to remind ourselves that ‘people need to be a lot kinder to themselves and treat themselves as they would treat their best friend’
She also speaks compellingly about the psychology of clothes, and the lure to buy clothes (obviously on THE OUTNET!) that give you back your sense of self, that cocoon and comfort you, but that are also beautiful investments and make you feel hopeful for the future. From the weekend legging worn to relax in or practice yoga, to the cozy knit dresses and chunky jumpers to work from home in, to the trousers suits that she is favoring for her appearances on screen (‘I suddenly realized why men had been wearing them for so many centuries because they’re such practical and empowering clothes, and pockets!’). Clothes provide us with an identity and armor that directly impact our state of mind, our confidence, and sense of hope for the future.