My faith was shaking, which is not like me

Danielle A. Vincent
3 min readJan 11, 2022
Last year, I bought this lovely trailer as a respite from the challenges of 2020

Last year, I met my greatest enemy… and it turned out the enemy was me

Over the past 12 months, I have come to realize that nothing can harm us as much as ourselves. No external force can inflict the pain, sadness, and bewilderment that we inflict on ourselves — and I don’t think we know we’re doing it most of the time.

That was 2020.

I inflicted an unbelievable amount of pain on myself as I tried to navigate being the captain of a ship on the stormy seas of a pandemic, supply chain issues, advertising changes, privacy law updates, tax law updates, and more.

I felt very small.
I felt very alone.
The ocean felt very big.
The ocean felt very indifferent.

But the truth is this:

  • I was not small. My actions have impact.
    We employ 17 of the greatest people you’ll ever meet (and we make sure they have sick days and benefits so they can take care of themselves and their families).
    By insisting on aluminum bottles, 50,000 fewer pieces of virgin plastic entered the garbage last year.
    By paying our offsets, we offset 70 metric tons of CO₂
    Heck, in the worst of it, I started this newsletter as a personal life-raft in the storm, and many people have told me it is meaningful to them (thank you — I am so glad it is helpful).
  • I am not alone.
    The fact that you’re reading this is proof.
    Our team is so incredible. Several of the employees we have here today have been with us more than a year.
    Without them and without you, this business would not be possible.
    Side note: the customer satisfaction team got me a boot tote to carry my fancy boots in the stormy weather. Isn’t that one of the most considerate and caring and thoughtful things you’ve ever heard of?
  • The ocean’s size is irrelevant.
    I’m not going to say it’s not big, but, really, the size of it doesn’t matter. I am as big as others who have sailed these seas.
    And really, it’s not an ocean. It’s people. People just like me, sailing their own oceans.
  • The ocean is not indifferent.
    Every year, we get more Outlaws in our Outlaw gang.
    Not everyone will understand what we’re doing, and not everyone will care. But the important people do understand and do care.
    Over the weekend, several people messaged me offering more loans, since our Kiva loan reached capacity. (I can’t take it because of the law, but thank you!)

I share this with you because I think we are all feeling this these days. And I guess I want you to know that you’re not alone.

One of our customers wrote that her house was obliterated in the tornado that hit Kentucky. I can’t even imagine how disorienting that must be. My heart hurts. ♥️

Some events of the year prompted me to write about our Outlaw values. I would love for you to read what I feel like Outlaw stands for.

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Danielle A. Vincent

CEO of Outlaw — https://LiveOutlaw.com — award-winning entrepreneur, published author, and incurable optimist (the doctor says it’s terminal)