My Reverse Bucket List 2018

I was delighted to be tagged to write this blog post, by the ever inspiring This Stuff Is Golden  A ‘Reverse Bucket List’ is basically just that, instead of listing what we would like to achieve, we reflect on what we have already accomplished and highlights of the year. Here is my little list below:

I have been truly humbled to sing beautiful music in some amazing historical buildings this year, St Mary’s Church Bedfont is definitely one of them. Built in the 13th Century, I look forward to singing at their restoration concert next year!

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Thrilled to feature in the advertising campaign for Homemade Vegan Baby Food brand Pasons Pots, had so much fun filming these promo shots taken by Aidan Martin.

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OK, so not actually happened yet, but will have in two days from me publishing this blog post, so had to mention it, as I’m absolutely in awe of the vital work of The Dogs Trust and very much looking forward to singing at their Christmas Fair In The Barn.

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I was thrilled to be invited to chat on the Liam Davis Show, at Shoreditch Radio earlier this year, to chat about my performing and writing work, had an absolute ball and such a wonderful team!

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Talking of teams..I had the absolute pleasure to work with a team for three months this year, who I can truthfully say are now family! Their thoughtful leaving gifts made me cry ❤

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It’s OK Not To Have A Plan

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We can so often be consumed with wanting results, answers and most of all life changes, that we lose sight of a process. A process of enjoyment. I suppose, without sounding too clichéd, maybe a journey. This is a journey of discovery and often the best ones are unplanned.

Sometimes, being totally clueless isn’t a bad thing, in fact it means you are pretty much free to do whatever you want, in the spur of the moment. If you are indecisive about something and have no idea what you should do, then see it as an opportunity. Rather than having it mapped out in front of you, the answer is whatever you want it to be.

Searching for answers can be exhausting, wanting to know why we are in a certain position, can just be soul destroying. Embracing what we have right now and what we can do to make it the best life possible, that we owe ourselves, can be enlightening. Making a brand new fresh start can be daunting, but it doesn’t have to follow a rhythm, that’s the beauty of it, it’s well and truly fresh. That’s exciting, the possibilities really are endless.

Remember, that path is all your own, unique and awesome, because it’s all you.

Have a lovely day and be kind ❤

“Treat” Yourself Every Day

Why do we use the word treat to talk about something we enjoy? It’s almost implying that it’s forbidden or only allowed on certain occasions. If you fancy a hot chocolate or a cappuccino, have one, unless of course you have an allergy or medical condition affected by it. If you want to see that new show midweek, go and see it.

Being kind to ourselves is so important, restrictions of what we enjoy is not going to make us happy, in fact it does the opposite. Guilty pleasures implies just that, that you are guilty of something. Even if a certain band are widely considered the cheesiest to have ever existed, if you enjoy their music, then that’s your choice. We are all individuals with different thoughts and tastes, so lets celebrate that.

Sometimes, by forbidding something, it makes us want it a whole lot MORE. The saying “Want what you can’t have” is always relevant. Perhaps it is just human nature, but something being off limits, makes it that so much more enticing.

I am going to have a slice of Banana bread and a cup of tea now ❤

 

 

Love Your Work-Be Happy

Let’s be honest, who doesn’t want to be happy and do a job they love? Is this realistic? ABSOLUTELY.

We have to work hard, to achieve our dreams and to be able to live the life we want, especially in the Arts. If we want something, we have to focus ourselves on that goal, to make it happen.

Knowing what doesn’t set our soul on fire, is wonderful motivation, to make us want to have that spark set alight inside ourselves. Keeping that thought in the back of your mind, helps you to keep on reaching for your dreams.

Visualising that job you know will make you happy, is a brilliant start, but writing a list of all the reasons it will, is a great incentive. Having a list, to keep reminding you of what you are working towards, really works!

Have a beautiful day and be kind ❤️

Looking Forward To Autumn Already?

If the answer to the above title is yes, then guess what? Me too! There is something so beautiful about the transition from Summer to Autumn, especially in terms of nature. Golden coloured crunchy leaves, seem to symbolise the change in season, but there is also an air of new opportunities, as well as the chance to wind down the year. In fact, you can make Autumn what ever you want it to be for you.

Here are some of my favourite things to get me in the Autumnal mood:

Hot Chocolate (with a Marshmallow on top)

A large mug of hot chocolate with a marshmallow floating on top…Need I say more?

Strictly Come Dancing

This has become an annual event, that signifies Autumn. The anticipation of seeing which well known figure will be on the show and be partnered with which pro, is pretty exciting, even if you aren’t a dancer yourself. Sitting on the sofa or in bed, watching the show, is the perfect way to spend a chilly evening.

Jaunts In The Crunchy Leaves

That sound. The crisp, crunch of leaves as you walk on them, is a beautiful sound. Being around nature, can really help you relax and unwind. Taking time out of our general busy and sometimes stressful lives, can work wonders.

Chiller (Chilling Thriller) Book

I LOVE to read, there is nothing that compares to curling up with a good book or audio book. A good book can be read just about anywhere and transport you to a different world. During the Autumn and Winter especially, I enjoy a chilling thriller, such as ones by Susan Hill. Definitely check out your local library, there are so many books in them, just waiting for you to read!

Cake

A cup of tea and a slice of cake…This is dreamy right?

Here are also some Autumnal cake alternatives to satisfy your sweet tooth, that are perfect for snacking (the 3 D’s).

Dried fruit eg banana chips and apricots

Dates

Dark Chocolate

Have a beautiful day and be kind 💜

Create Your Own Path

How many times, have we been in a position, where we are waiting for the green-light for a creative project? Wait, wait, wait and wait some more, in fact, it can feel most of our life is waiting for the magic to happen. Not just in our lives as artists, but all aspects of our World.

We might not like to admit it, but we expect the extraordinary to come to us, that sprinkle of unicorn glitter. We need to be realising, as wonderful fate can be, we need to make things happen ourselves.

Make things happen? You are probably wondering what that means. Well that is completely up to you. We are all different and have individual goals, so what we want to acheive, will be completely different to anothers ambition. This is what is so wonderful about individuality.

Doing things your own way, will utimately let you be in control of your career and means you are being pro-active, thinking outside of the box. I can not advocate thinking outside of the box enough, especially in the Arts!

Ultimately, learning to rely on yourself and your intuition is vital, as we only have ourselves in all situations, so we need to learn to listen to our intuition and do what makes us happy. Being happy is what we should aspire to feel, which meams being kind to ourselves, as well as others.

Have a beautiful day and be kind. 💜

Being A Creative Isn’t A Sprint

How often do we read a new social media post, that makes us question our worth, as an artist, due to it’s content? A lot. We see what others are seemingly working on, which always appears to be much more than us, instead of realising it’s quality, rather than quantity, that should be our main aim (easier said than done).

We are our own boss as creatives and we might not always feel like it, but we are also our own product. We are the only ones, that can build our own career path in the Arts. Of course, collaboration is vital, but we need to focus on ourselves and what works for us. Perhaps, learning lines for one show, worked well with one method, but for another, you need a totally different approach.

We shouldn’t be hard on ourselves and our progress, as every project is different. One new play might flow and another might be bursts of inspiration, followed by sitting eating snacks and watching a box set. Be true to yourself, this is you unwinding and having some Me Time.

Why is Me Time so important? It gives us time to obtain whatever we need, be it time to think, or to rejuvenate. This time is vital as a human being, as well as a creative. Giving ourselves space to unwind and remember what makes you tick, is what we all need.

Have a beautiful day and be kind 💜

Nominations Open For The 2018 International Achievement Recognition Awards

Nominations for the UK’s fifth International Achievement Recognition Awards (IARAs) are now open to the public until Monday, 11 June 2018.

Renowned for celebrating outstanding talent, pioneering initiatives and hard work within theatre, music, TV, film and fashion, the IARAs continue to champion diversity, inclusion and equality in the competitive world of arts and entertainment.

Founded in 2014 by Helen Imuaphe, the awards programme provides a fair playing field for all, acknowledging role models and rising stars who have excelled within their creative industries irrespective of race, age or gender.

Imuaphe commented, “Every year the IARAs go from strength-to-strength and I am proud of our new generation of leaders who are embracing the awards. Our aim is to propel the UK’s pipeline of talent to new heights and continue to motivate and inspire the next generation.

‘The IARAs are inclusive at every level, and for the very first year we are offering apprentice schemes to students and graduates seeking experience in stage and event management. They will be able to assist IARAs production team in the planning of this year’s awards ceremony and gain an industry recognised qualification upon completion.

‘Following the huge success of the awards last year I am looking forward to expanding our operation for 2018 and encourage anyone who knows a great arts and entertainment talent to nominate.”

Upon nomination closure on Monday, 11 June 2018 the candidates who receive the most votes will comprise the awards shortlist. Public voting will resume on Tuesday, 10 July 2018 for approximately one month until Monday, 13 August 2018, at which stage the votes will be counted and the winners announced at the awards’ gala dinner and prize giving on Saturday, 22 September 2018 at the Hilton London Canary Wharf Hotel.

For further information on the nomination process, to book tickets and to find out more about the IARAs please visit www.iara-awards.org.

Quirks That Make Us, Simply, Human

Let’s be honest, the things that make us only human, the quirks, are not always seen by ourselves as positives. Although, in fact, they can be what make life a little more interesting and a bit more fun. We need to try and embrace these quirks, here are just a few of them…

Humour

We all have diffetent kinds of humour and triggers that will give us the giggles. Whether it be wicked, naughty, dark or dry, (the list goes on), we all should celebrate what causes us to laugh and makes us happy, as well as those around us.

Falling Over In Public

This is when we really have to just laugh at ourselves and really take it in our stride (unless you are injured of course!). At the very least, we have perhaps brought a smile to someone, with our acrobatic display!

Eye Make-Up

One eye is going to qualify for the Turner Prize and the other, is never going to make it (no pun intended). I am referring the age old mystery, of why you apply make-up to one eye, just the way you want it, but the other eye never completely manages to be emulated. The answer to the mystery is that… I have to reveal there is no answer, you can never clone one eye’s look precisely, indivuality is an awesome thing!

First Date Nerves

You have managed to get a date with THE person of your dreams…THEN you get so nervous, you talk so much and you dont manage to eat anything, even though you love Italian food! We have all had this happen. Butterflies are natural and the adrenalin can cause us to chat a lot, but that’s a good thing, chatting is always good to put you at ease.

Have a beautiful day and be kind. 💜

Small Changes Can Make A Big Difference To Your Happiness

When you aren’t happy, you know you’re not, others know it too, but still it’s so easy to brush it under the carpet.

Things will get better..No they don’t

It will pass, just give it time..This won’t happen

This feeling of discontent has happened before...So that means try to prevent it happening again

Ultimately we all want to be happy and making small changes to our lives, can make all the difference. These small changes below are positive ones, which will contribute to us, at the very least, feeling enlightened and a little more joyful.

Distance yourself from negativity

Doing exactly those four words will make a huge difference! If someone or something is a constant huge grey cloud, a toxic energy, then know when to distance yourself for your own good. Being kind to yourself, is so very important.

Making Time For YOU

When you have a career in the Arts, like myself, you are fundamentally a freelancer. This means you seem to be on auto-pilot, thinking constantly about the next gig or project. Take time to relax when you are feeling the pressure-whether it be listening to music or reading a chapter of the book you keep meaning to pick up…

Which leads me on to..READING

Printed copy or Audio book, I can’t recommend this enough. From personal experience, there is nothing more relaxing and takes you to a clearer mind frame, than a good book. Relaxing means you are not in a state of stress or exhaustion and can make decisions, in a more positive happier state.

Hope these small changes, can lead to a big change and a happier you. Have a beautiful day and be kind ❤️