W h a t – L o n d o n – h a s – t a u g h t – m e

 

London has been a huge learning curve for me. Whether it be location change, social group change or just general personal change, it’s been huge fun and rather interesting to learn about another culture… even if it is only a short train ride away from my old home.

So what have I learnt? Well, in true Georgie style, I made a lovely list for you people.

 

  1. Got time to kill, walk to your next destination.
  2. Buy a pair of trainers, you’ll care less about looking ‘work cool’ pretty quick when you get those lovely blisters or slip down an escalator.
  3. Read the tube ads, they are actually a huge loop hole into London life.
  4. Get onto the tube and MOVE THE F*CK DOWN THE ISLE, please.
  5. Take that seat that the lovely man just offered you, it’s a freaking rare occasion your bum will get now a days.
  6. Get a book, tube time is valuable and so is a little education too.
  7. Get a rucksack (but for pete’s sake, take it off in the tube!) again, this ‘cool look’ can still happen with a funky ‘hip’ rucksack – leading onto
  8. Visit all the markets, it’s one of London’s priceless treasures. Whether that be the flower market, food market, vintage market or second hand market… the list is endless, the people are charming and the purchases are well worth it.
  9. It may look like everyone is out all the time but don’t feel bad if all you want to do is sit at home with your housemates. London outside is cool but just chilling with your homies is just as sweet.
  10. Find the right housemates. Don’t be afraid of Spareroom.com. I mean, unless you are the lucky sh*t that can rent on their own or own already then embrace the ability to shop around for flatmates and rooms.
  11. Take the headphones off, enjoy the sounds. You’ll start to notice a lot more about your local community.
  12. Look up. London has some rather quirky heights. Whether it be the Cow on Camden Lock balcony, the Barn Owl in Clapham Station or the recent art installation… if anything it’s highly amusing.
  13. Learn the history. See a funny building, see a funny looking shop… Google it. Seriously, you’ll be surprised the things London has got up to over the many, many years. You can also then impress a significant other with your wealth of city knowledge 😉
  14. Finally, though I could go on and on and to be honest I am still learning (as always), take you’r time. This place is not small and it’s always changing so just go with the flow. Oh and pass on the juicy finds too please!

W a n t i n g – t o – s t o p – t i m e

I think we all wish we could stop time once in a while. Whether that be because we want to savour a moment or because we just simply need time to think about the right decision.

It has become apparent to me that recently, I wish I could stop time everyday. Not necessarily relative to the above reasons either. More because I feel I need time to catch up on what has just gone past, just to process it. The ideal situation I always tell myself is that, ‘if I just took a good long break I could figure out exactly what I want to do.’ The only problem is, I don’t do breaks… or stopping for that fact. But who does recently? If only we had the super powers to really stop time (clearly I have been watching too many marvel films…) but on a more serious note, why has our world sped up so much. I can’t even sit at home without feeling like I am missing out on an opportunity to further my career, meet new people, catch up with old friends or experience a new event/memory. And because of this, nothing can ever get done.

I always get an impulse to write when I think it can be relative to other peoples lives. I guess maybe, in some way, I hope I can help someone. Allow them to twig with something or even just to calm them, that they aren’t alone in this crazy world! And to be really honest I am not sure really where this post is going, just that I realised this issue… we can’t stop time. And I know, that’s obvious Georgie but it’s something we want to do, so how can we get round this fact. You can’t just stop and take a break, bills need to be paid, careers need to be made so more bills can be paid and life can progress… So how does one find the ability to calm the mind and sort through everything? Or am I really on my own in this one and no one else has a million and one things racing through their head daily? From what I have seen, I highly doubt this!

So lovely people, I think it’s time we realise we should be allowed to stop time (unfortunately not literally) but in our own minds.

So yeah… if you work out why and how, pass me on the magic please!

V U L N E R A B I L I T Y

No one is perfect, although it’s hard not to want to be all the time! Everybody feels vulnerable once in a while but sometimes it can be all too consuming. Sometimes vulnerability takes over someones personality and changes who they are and who other people think they are. No one should ever be allowed to feel vulnerable.

You can feel alone and be lonely or you can be alone and feel empowered. Learning to cope with your own self is the first steps to being truely happy. And don’t get me wrong, its a long process and some people learn better than others but that’s the journey off life.

So, the reason for the link… I love the beach. I love it even more I now know I can take a board out and not look like a totally idiot. But something occurred to me recently when spending some time on there. It seems to be one of the rare places where you are totally alone in your situation. Yes, you may have some else joining you but at that time, their is no judgement. Who or what is there to judge about people walking, swimming, surfing on a beach? Who or what is there really to judge about people in the world (but that’s another topic to cover). Back to the beach, you are in your own space there, just being there.  For us humans now a days with our automated lives that can never stop to take a break whether it be technology or social need, the beach is that stopping place. The beach is that place were the sea meets the land and the view is ever expanding that all you can do is take a breath and be you.

So back to the meaning. I decided to do a bit of filming one day, more just to play about with the new gadget (Canon XC10 4k) but after looking at the footage and having the best day out in the fresh air by my new love, the sea (sorry Jodie, your acting was great but the sea was better) I saw an opportunity to create a short to promote the message…

Learn to trust yourself, to be yourself and to enjoy yourself.

Being alone is not scary, it’s not bad, it should be empowering.

It seems like the classic line, the typical blog post, the therapy round up but really, that is all we need to move forward in our futures. So ladies and gentleman, please take a moment to watch this little short and hopefully, it will 1. make you want to go to the beach and 2. encourage you to take a breath and see clearly how awesome the road ahead can be, alone or with others by your side.

To watch

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W h y – A r t ?

It’s been 5 years of ups and downs and finally I have officially become a university Alumni, well I did about 6 months ago…

It’s fair to say ones life has chopped and changed quite dramatically over the years but then whose hasn’t!? We have so many opportunities now open to us that it has become both a blessing and a hindrance. We are able to try such a variety of options that it gives us the chance to truly find our thing. However, it also means we can become so fixated on trying so much that we stress over having too many options. We then end up falling into traps, settling for what comes easiest or what we think we should be doing. Can I hear you saying, ‘story of my life,’ does this all sound rather familiar?

This made me reflect back on the decision made 5 years ago; to go to university and become a Paramedic (this concept is so foreign to me now, I can’t even explain why it was even an option) or to take my place at art college doing an Art Foundation year. If you have read past this is my life (typical blog) posts, then you know the story and that this is well and truely one full circle. The circle of life.. how cliche of me!

Born to be covered in paint and spending my free time walking up hills to get the perfect shot.

Ok, so enough about my story, let’s talk about why art is so flipping fantastic shall we?

Are you a gallery visitor? What makes you want to go? Pay the money… travel the distance… see something you could have googled…

Well, it’s different for everyone (another reason why art is so brilliant) it’s so subjective. You have to look at art with emotion. That’s why some people understand it and others don’t, their emotion is tuned to that area of specification and detail. It’s like the subconscious, art in itself is the subconscious and it takes having that kind of wondering mind to be able to depict the meaning and enjoy the message.

You see a painting, it has a white background and two large black dots on it. Ok, I know it’s a bit of a crass way to explain it but it’s a very common description from those less enthused by the art world. So anyways, back to the point. What comes into your head when you look at a painting like this?

Now here is where we differentiate and were you arty people really shine…

So for me… It’s about the concept. What was the artist going through at that time? What material was used? How many times was it repainted? Where was it painted? Is each dot painted with the same colour, brush stroke, pressure? Oh and the list goes on….

It’s not a bad thing not to have this reaction… I mean, it is just two dots and you can still enjoy the visual. But if you do have those questions, embrace it! Art IS art because it can easily answers all these questions and with thus create the visual and evoke a powerful emotion along side it. Whether you are watching, listening or participating in art, you are all experiencing your own, unique type of connection to it. It’s a crazy world this art world but I couldn’t ask for a better destination to call home.

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T h e – S k y

This new thing about taking photos of the sky. Why? Well it’s simple really, isn’t it just stunning! I like to take photos of the sky because I believe it’s shows the importance of keeping your head up. I have written many times about this before but since becoming a commuter I sadly see it even more. GET OFF YOUR PHONES!! (past post)

The sky is one of those images, creations, beauties that people just full stop don’t appriciate. That sky is our covering, it’s what our lives surround around and depend on.

The sky sees everything and everyone is able to see it. Remember that movie line saying, ‘look up at the moon and know that I will be looking at that moon too, wherever we may be’ try and ignore the rather soppy side but it is all very true. The sky is a stunning spectacle. Whether it be summer clear blue or misty moody winter, it’s an master piece.

So, whilst you walk to work, stand waiting for a train or queuing at the coffee cart, just take a look up, breath and realise where you are. Take time to enjoy the personal moments and the beauty of what we have around us. It’s simple, you don’t need a mindfulness podcast or meditation music in your ear you just need you.

You may say the sky is the just all the same to you but it’s everyone’s…

We share it

We can’t change it

and it will never not be there.

B e i n g . A v e r a g e .

Not quite top of the class but good enough to just be settled somewhere in the middle…

Yep, that is being your bog standard average person.

‘A good all rounder’, if I earn’t a pound for the amount of times I have been called this throughout my life, I would be one very rich women!

Is it a bad thing though?

‘Inspired by the fear of being average… ‘ my go to quote. However, should you really worry about this? Why Has average been given such a negative connotation…

I have learn’t and have been/still am, on a long road to realise you just have to embrace it. To be fair, I am still realising what is ahead for the future but accepting that being average is actually quite beneficial.

So this is how it is…

You went through school trying everything and anything but never quite found your niche. You then hit senior school and started excelling in a few things but was never fully recognised as the star play. Then university and you tried new things, found loves, found hates but again just paddled along with no big break through… well, I can tell you now, you did it perfectly.

I once nearly packed everything in and decided I would follow one path and one path only. It was either music, art or sport. But my indecisive brain saved me (on this occasion) and I have to say, I am very grateful. Being the top player in one activity is obviously a huge achievement, don’t get me wrong, I am not taking away any credit to those that are absolute geniuses at what they do. However, I also think we put too much pressure on ourselves to find that one thing we can do early in our lives. We have so much to learn and realise as we grow up that we surely cant pick something straight off from the young ages of prep school or 6th form. We have the world out there for us to experiment, grow and learn. Simply enough its what ‘growing up’ is all about. Just, for the some reason, society has tried to quicken up the process too much. People should not be disheartened or judged because they try new things and change their minds. I’m preaching to the choir here (like most my posts) as I am still reminding myself of this most days. But it is so true… what’s wrong with being average.

Embrace wanting to learn and try new things and then embrace being on par with all those new things you can do. As humans we have many capabilities and we are here to be of use. Don’t waste this opportunity to go out there and get stuck in and experience as much as possible. Firstly, you’ll be helping others and yourself build the society around us and secondly, I have to admit, it is a great selling point for your CV!

 

C O M P L E T E D (Video)

It’s been a while since I actually finished the Fan Dance 2016 and so I am way over due a finale post about it but here goes…

I am going to cheat a bit though and the main part of this post is the vlog (see very bottom).

(They had a professional photographer but as someone kindly pointed out, it still didn’t help me look sexy!)

On the 3rd July i took part in the Fan Dance race, I drove up the day before and stayed in a delightful lodgings that I found on Air BnB, huge thanks for their hospitality and amazing accommodation! I decided to drive back the day of the event which wasn’t actually that bad but if you get the chance to stay another night I would hugely recommend it, the views are stunning and well, you will defineitly benefit from another days recovery! I however, decided working the next day would be fine, the blisters on my feet did not…

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Tip 1: Get there early, you can then sit, eat, repack, watch the sunrise and take deep breaths… lots of deep breaths!

 

Tip 2: Just got for it… ignore again pain or the other people walking or resting, just pump those arms, move those feet and get back to base camp asap, there is food there! I hardly ate on the race, I had a bit of chocolate but it was more the fuelling before and after that was essential for me. When I finished I actually nearly fainted due to the shock of not moving for the first time in 4 hours so I would recommend just walking it off and eating a very high sugar snack at the same time, my go to? ‘Shrimps & Bananas’ coupled with ‘Dolly Mix’ 🙂

The Result: 2nd Female Place, 4hrs 20mins

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The aftermath…

Tip 3: The pain comes quite a few hours, even days later when your body starts to come out of shock! Make sure you go up with someone and try not to drive back on the same day/eat eat eat!

Tip 4: Blisters If you need to pop them, use a needle (sterilised) and only make a small huge then cover with a sufficiently sized hydrocolloidal blister plaster and LEAVE IT! Don’t do what I did and rip it by accident and end up like the below…. (warning: not a pretty site!)

 

So the video….

Words cant really describe how epic this event was. Its just as much mental as it is physical and I cant believe the time I ended in. All I can really say for now is, I will be back there next year for sure, with the aim of beating my time, getting a lot more footage of the race itself and… bringing a load more people with me!

Apologies for the scrappiness of the video but hopefully you get the gist.

 

Tip 5: SIGN UP! Honestly, you wont regret it!

3 D A Y S .

Three years ago I climbed Kilimanjaro and in 3 days I will be taking another trip up a mountain (a little closer to home). I will be taking on the Fan Dance 2016, a 15 mile race up Pen Y Fan (the tallest mountain) in the Brecon Beacons. This is the original SAS selection route and I will be doing it with 25lbs of weight on my back. Not going to lie, I am absolutely sh*tting myself but at the same time I cant wait to feel the adrenaline of climbing up such a route. I singed up for this event after running the Surrey Half Marathon and I have to say, it was the first event I genuinely thought was right up my street. Why? Because it is totally authentic. It doesn’t glam up the process, it has no tricks and shortcuts and most importantly, it requires true mental strength. This event is not to be taken light heartedly and I know it will be one of the toughest things I have ever done, Kilimanjaro is nothing on this ,that is for sure (well, unless you get food poisoning on the summit, another story for another day!). My aim of course is to finish it, but it would be the best feeling to complete it in 5hours (the SAS selection time is 4hrs, 4hrs 15 with bad weather). I have trained as much as I could have with exams, and if I am honest I will probably be winging it most the way. Call me sad but I am genuinely just looking forward to sweating it out in a different location, in the open air and with some bloody good views. I plan to try and film as much as possible but at the same time I will be a nervous wreck so we shall see what happens.

See you on the other side!

B e i n g . y o u r . o w n . k i n d . o f . b e a u t i f u l

When you look in the mirror what do you see?

… Do you even look in a mirror?

… Do you even have a mirror?

I released recently that I don’t care for a mirror. Of course it will be used for make up situations but even then the process is focused and mainly a ‘get the job done’ kind of situation.

This got me thinking, is this a bad thing? Am I not looking in the mirror because I am too ashamed of the image looking back or is it that I just don’t want the trigger there to start judging myself or, is it simply, that I just need not care what I look like on the outside from another stance. As long as I feel happy with my set up from my side of things then nothing else matters right?

We all nit-pick at ourselves, it is human nature. Actually, on second thoughts, is it? I sit here now and I am questioning my reasoning because I don’t have anything to justify why we should question ourselves and our own beauty. We are all different, why is beauty assigned to a certain type? I think if I were to ask a group of people what they thought beauty was, sadly, we would all give a similar response. I would love to say that we would all say beauty is within and it’s about the inner person but really, in this commercial world full of things like social media, giving us an ‘all access’ pass into each others lives, we associate beauty with looks and how one comes across physically. Is that fair? Of course not. Why does it even matter? Shouldn’t one just be happy with themselves enough not to give a sh*t about what society thinks? Well, in this day an age that is bloomin’ hard and I take my hat of to those people that seem to be able to follow that way of thinking so easily.

So there is a lot of questions and doubts about this title. Be your own kind of beautiful… we try and we fail everyday to be what we want to be beacause sometimes that isn’t even what we want to be. I know, I am now being more than just confusing… it’s a very cryptic discussion but in this society do we even know what makes us feel beautiful anymore.

Beauty is…

What came into your head? Honestly for me, ‘Peace’ . I chase the idea of peacefulness every single day. I know it’s a long road but my #transformationtuesday post that has become all the craze right now, wouldn’t be a body selfie of my new muscular physique or my new flexibility as a yogi but instead it’s a mental progression on how my mind has learnt to be more calm and at peace with what it is doing with itself.

Is beauty just about looks? Hell no! I really hope that we have all learnt that beauty is not even half and half about looks and personality. Beauty is unique to the individual. You may have a different nose to the person next to you but your beauty is not that part of you, your beauty is in your voice, your words you write, your acts of kindness, your ability to stand up in a crowd and dance like know ones watch… Beauty is doing something because it makes you happy and not thinking about anyone else’s opinion on it.

So does a mirror really matter in this sense? I started this piece off wanting to talk about the physical beauty and well, I realised (like many posts) there is so much more to it. Learning to be more of you is the beauty in life. Being you is going out in what you want, to where you want and you’ll know it’s what you  want because you wont even question it. No one questions beauty because it is unique, it’s just there and people should love it and embrace it in all its forms.

Now to watch this video before you finish this piece.

Beauty is limitless to a person. I think everyone is beautiful… I honestly do. I am learning to find my beauty but that’s part of growing up and living.

 

W h o . a r e . w e . t o . j u d g e

Matthew 7:1-5
1 “Do not judge, or you too will be judged. 2 For in the same way you judge others, you will be judged, and with the measure you use, it will be measured to you. 3 “Why do you look at the speck of sawdust in your brother’s eye and pay no attention to the plank in your own eye? 4 How can you say to your brother, ‘Let me take the speck out of your eye,’ when all the time there is a plank in your own eye? 5 You hypocrite, first take the plank out of your own eye, and then you will see clearly to remove the speck from your brother’s eye.
 Luke 6:37-42
37 “Do not judge, and you will not be judged. Do not condemn, and you will not be condemned. Forgive, and you will be forgiven. 38 Give, and it will be given to you. A good measure, pressed down, shaken together and running over, will be poured into your lap. For with the measure you use, it will be measured to you.” 39 He also told them this parable: “Can the blind lead the blind? Will they not both fall into a pit? 40 The student is not above the teacher, but everyone who is fully trained will be like their teacher.

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We all do it.

We all just assume something about someone as soon as they walk in that door, you cant deny it, it’s in our human nature to assess every situation and read into it. But assessing and judging, these a two very different things and sadly later is what more of civilisation rely on.

In the past I have judged someone for being, ‘a bit crazy’ and you blame them for making the situation awkward, you assume they are just horrible, unfriendly and ‘not like you normal people’ but what is normal? I can now realise, just like most of us, they were struggling with something. We have all had those times when we go through something and we change, we hide away, we turn into a person we don’t like. I have been in that situation… I went on a weird path and I got judged and it was horrible. Everyone has a ‘funny’ period. Some people are lucky, they don’t get that phase. Or are they?

I am thankful for being able to understand what it is like to go through ‘stuff’ it has given me the ability to be able to understand what it is like for others to go through similar. It has given me a chance to understand why we shouldn’t judge people and how wrong we can be about someone. I would even go as far to say people on death row (Ok, so I have been watching a lot of documentaries on this recently) but we can’t even assume with them, we can’t put ourselves in their shoes, their lives, their mind so how can we even begin to make statements about why they did something and who they are. I know what mental health does to people, I would never have thought I could have been the person I was a few years ago but it happened and we cant do anything about it. The mind is a wonderful but also complex and partly inexplainable part of us.

We can judge someone yet we are hurt when others judge us…

I may work as a fitness consultant but what does that mean, that I have to wear sports gear all the time, talk about the gym all the time, always be on a diet, posting my exercises on Instagram? No, but sadly this is a stereotype people get judged against.

If you show too much of  ____ you are now put into this category. If you eat too much of  _____ , you are put into this category. If you acted like ______ you are clearly going through this… Get to know someone, only then can you ever start to even get marginally close to understanding and take an opinion on their lives. And even then, only make your opinion when asked. It’s their life so let them live it.

We now live in a world where we want to know everything and anything about peoples lives. We focus so much on other peoples we forget to take care of our own, we lose touch of what we actually feel as an individual and how we want our lives to go. You will find that people judge people yet they don’t know who they really are themselves.

Another thing I have learned is people don’t change easily… it takes only themselves and the power of their own persuasion and mental strength to make themselves change. You can be there to support them, but nothing you do with really make that change happen unless they are ready. Let them be.

This could be talked about for days, even as I sit writing this I have more and more ideas and theories coming  into mind but. It’s simple, learn who you are before you even start to justify who someone else is. By the time that happens you will be old enough and wise enough not to bother wasting your time giving a sh*t about what someone else should or shouldn’t be doing with their life (remember they wont change unless they want to)… that’s growing up, that’s finding yourself that, is what REAL life is about.

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T h e . L a s t . M o n t h . i n . P i c t u r e s

Ok so manly the last month in food photos but hey ho 🙂

T h e . F a n . D a n c e

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I may have just had my second mid life crisis (its clearly becoming a thing for me now) but I have signed up to do one hell of a challenge, I might even go to say it’s the toughest challenge I have gone through yet….

So, some of you may or may not know I recently completed my first half marathon, and no, I haven’t just singed up for the full hog, that isn’t quite my thing. But, I did absolutely love running the half and surprisingly found it rather comfortable to complete. From this and from what I have written about recently on this page I have seen that my training style has started to really come through and I now understand what it is I want to complete and work towards. I think it is safe to say I have found my training balance and my niche.

So drum roll please (even though it’s kind of a give away in the title)…….

On July 3rd 2016 I will be taking part in the Fan Dance, a 15mile race up Pen Y Fan, the highest mountain in the Brecon Beacons. I will be taking part in the weight bearing race which means I will be carrying 25kg of weight in a Bergen (army rucksack) on my back… can’t make it too easy can I!

I will be training in the weeks leading up to the event and will be documenting my progress through film, photography and this page. If you have been following my blog already, you may have guessed, I am a very hands on media orientated person. My idea is that I will be able to capture this journey through using the various medias platforms as a way of experimentation using each one. I also want to show others that they can do the same and to take on challenges, however hard, frighting or questionable!

Another key part of this journey is that I will be raising money along the way. I have a charity I hold very close to me, Mind. Mind are an amazing charity that help support and provide for people with mental health issues. I think this type of event  relates so well within this area and will not only be a great way to raise money for them but also to raise awareness, something just as important! I want to use this opportunity to help spread awareness for mental health, being a suffer myself with anxiety and depression I want to show the importance of mental strength. I strongly believe that physical strength is only possible through the power of mental strength. Everyone is unique and we all have different ways of coping but I want to show that the mind can be pushed to do many things and it’s all down to you as an individual to change it. I am a huge goal setter and I love to challenge myself so this is an ideal way I can push myself the little bit more to see how far I can go.

It is funny to think a few years ago I wanted to set myself the challenge of being a bikini competitor… I can honestly say I feel 200% more comfortable and happier with the event and physical state I now need to work towards. It takes time, so much time to get a balance and I hope that my snippets and musings have shown that it isn’t plain sailing and attitudes change and mould. So, if you have that nigg in the back of your mind thinking, ‘there is something missing’, ‘I wish I could do that’, then fish it out, read into it, go explore it and then take the plunge. No regrets ey!

…. I will let you know how that gets on after a few weeks of weighted hill runs 😉

Below I have just typed out a few info bits into my general ideas for the next few weeks. I would love you say I have come up with all this on my own but I am no expert (you will hear me say that a lot just to warn you because this is a HUGE learning curve for me). My friend and hugely impressive PT/Athlete Gareth Davies has been a HUGE help with it all. If you want to watch his journey from this January on Pen Y Fan, his video is here.

IMG_9173T R A I N I N G

Each week:

1x 5-7 mile run

2x 10-12mile weighted walks

Gym: prowler work, body weighted circuits

F O O D

Pretty simple, eat to fuel whilst still concentrating on my introduction of food from my elimination diet I have spoken about before.

F O O T A G E 

I will be Vlogging both as a diary and with my training. I will also be writing out any musings or situations that appear along the way and of course, I will be enjoying Instagraming all my lovely views and sweaty selfies on my walks and runs.

Please feel free to ask me any questions or give me any and I mean ANY advice!

See you on the the side!

G

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B e i n g . w h o . y o u . a r e

With social media being the fore front of our world right now, I believe it is important to address, well touch on the issue. There is not enough time in the world to properly discuss these two (now very popular/toxic) words but I would like to at least cover a few areas that I find personally quite important.

Firstly, I believe social media should not be a way or a tool to define who we are but I also don’t think it should be looked at in complete disgust. Relating to my pervious post (‘Get off your phone’) it has been both detrimental and hugely successful for the world and I aim to give both a positive and negative view point on my reasons. Don’t worry this wont be a rant, as such…

Who are we? That is not for our Facebook, Twitter, Youtube or Instagram account to determine.

What are we doing with our lives? That is not for our Facebook, Twitter, Youtube or Instagram account to determine. 

Am I happy? That is not for our Facebook, Twitter, Youtube or Instagram account to determine. 

Am I sad? That is not for our Facebook, Twitter, Youtube or Instagram account to determine. 

There are so many articles and talks now that debate the use of social media and its effects on our society. I do not wish to compete with these I just simply like to write about stuff I have an opinion on and enjoy discovering more about.

So social media, here is my rendition…

I have Facebook, I have Twitter, I have Instagram and you know what, I even have a youtube account. Now, I know there are plenty more social media sites popping up all over the place (Vine, Snapchat, Yik Yak etc.) but for now I will focus on these main 4.

I was born the same time Facebook was, heck I was a ‘Bebo’ and ‘My Space’ kid which, I am shocked to admit still exist (in parts). However I digress. Isn’t it crazy to look back and see how far it has all come? I guess it depends on your age but if I am honest, I am so glad I wasn’t born any later. I look at the younger generation today and I feel sorry for them. Their lives are consumed from the word go, they are now surrounded with gadgets and social networking outlets it is more of a mission to stay out of it than in it. You can walk out onto the street and see a 5 year old playing with an ipad! Parents make accounts for their baby’s and owners even have accounts for their pets (and I thought one account was time consuming enough!)

My social media? Like I said I have a fair few accounts, my Facebook has been deactivated before and I have to admit, it was a huge relief…

I would also like to point out, this post is not me boasting about how in touch with myself I am, that I don’t need social media and I am the angel of it all. Gosh no, I fall into traps with it all just as much as the next person but like I said too, I love writing about things that occupy my mind and I guess I just want to share my experiences and views on it all.

… I have Facebook for one reason and one reason only, to interact with my university projects. If I didn’t have a few groups linking me to my peers and our assignments I am working on for final year then I honestly would had kept it deactivated. I look at social media as a career door. I think it is a wonderful tool for business and aspiring creatives to sell themselves but it does have its dark corridors. I am not really a ‘scroller’ of social media, I just tend to post and see what happens. I worry that this ‘scrolling generation’ is beginning to lose themselves in the motion. A while ago I took a step back, I started looking at it from more of a business eye and ever since then I haven’t really used it in any other way. Yes I have twitter and I will probably use this more for personal use once I graduate but I feel people misinterpret twitter. I believe it is an ingenious creation of realtime promotion and communication. It is a spiders web of conversion between the world and all its nooks and crannies. You can tap into anything from simply just hash-tagging one simple phrase or linking your location. But I also feel that Twitter, due to the conversational structure and speed of delivery, has led to many people thinking they are able to say what they want, when then want, to whoever they want. This now unfortunately brings the conversation to that darker side, a side of cyber bullying and mental health issues (I know, sorry to bring the tone down but these issues becoming rapidly widespread and far to common for my liking).

What I think people need to ask themselves before they react to someone/thing online, or even just decide to post something out there for the whole world to see (well, depending on which site and privacy settings you use, but you get me!) is, ‘would I say this to your face?’ Now honestly guys, would you really say it to their face? I guess maybe that’s why I am pretty quite when it comes to my online interaction, as a person I second guess myself, so I guess it has helped me step back from the social media web and be a bit more careful with posting. I admit, we do get carried away in the heat of the moment but that’s the problem. Social media is so fast paced and guarded, we feel all safe and cosy sitting in are pj’s on our sofa in our house having the phone, tablet or computer screen between us and that something or someone on the other side. Thinking becomes less needed and impulse takes over. All this leads very sadly to cyber bullying, a topic that has only recently been brought out into the open from the film CyberBully to active campaigns and awareness in schools, it has finally started to get noticed. I luckily have never experienced this type of bullying but I can honestly say I think it could be one of the worst and it has to be publicised more.

Something else I touched on was mental health. This is where the wonderful world of Instagram comes in… Now, this is the tricky one because it has had so much press recently and not at all good. But again, I think there is both sides to the argument and it is taking a new road and platform in the world of social media. I am a fond user of Instagram but again, I am no ‘scroller’. I don’t spend time looking at my newsfeed or searching hashtags I just like to take a photo, add a ‘cheeky filter’ and upload it onto a database or ‘portfolio’ as I like to think of it but I have seen how people can easily fall into the trap. Creatives have seen the better side of Instagram and are now creating opportunities for people to develop careers from their posts. If you are interested to find out more about this new direction please follow this link, this is a company taking social media in the best direction. But, like i said Instagram has its bad press. If I was to ask what words came to their head when they hear me say the word Instagram what would there immediate thoughts be, I can bet you it will be along the lines of, ‘photo’ (obviously!), ‘fitness’, ‘food’, ‘fitspo’, ‘cooking’. Instagram has become a show reel. A show reel that people absorb themselves in, where they wish and long for the same life, item, style, taste, money (the evil tactic of social media right there). This, is the dark side to Instagram and all the above really. Unfortunately it is hard to pick up on this as Instagram is there to make photos look good, exceptional even. This is were it is key to have your inner self sorted before you go and do your scrolling. If I’m having a bad day, the worst possible thing I could do is go look up that hot looking fitness model on Instagram or that food author that has such a ‘care free life’ cooking all day. For some people it could help motivate them but for most it can trigger hidden issues with self image and become a downward spiral into never thinking life is good enough. Luckily a few people have piped up and the reality of what life is really about is showing. I love Instagram, I post on it regularly but I have always said to my friend that if she ever thinks I start posting or writing (on here) about a life that isn’t mine, one that I look to have jazzed up for no reason, that she slap me and tell me to sort my sh*t out. As of yet, I am slap free 🙂

I guess it comes with age and maturity (I laugh, I know I am not that mature, you will see from the photos below) that your idea and understanding of social media evolves and I guess I have learnt to see the light hearted side of it. I have never been one to post selfies and write long status updates, that’s just not me but I don’t care if others do, that’s them. I guess this post was to urge for normality and real life to shine through (where it be long or short posts, photos or no photos). I love the camera, but I love being behind it more than anything. I wish I was as photogenic as some people but that’s life so I will stick to what I am good at, posing with numerous food objects and pulling what I like to call the ‘blow fish face’. People have come to analyze life too much. Like I said before, social media should not run peoples lives, it should not define someone and it should certainly not determine how happy or sad you are.

Be careful what you post people, there is a whole world out there that is able to react. We are only one person, one in a trillion (billion… squillion….) with a unique brain of thoughts and feelings. Be you, be happy and learn to step back and live the real life.

Now for my very sparse but shameless selfies. My example that I am me in life as in social media. And clearly never a poser…. haha yeah

but the quote rings true, the privilege of life, is being who YOU are.

E X P L O R I N G

I am absolutely loving exploring the home country right now! Below are some images from a visit to the coastal region of Newquay in Dorset and then onto a more close by destination of Windsor. And there is more to come… in the next few weeks I will be hitting up the Lake District and Southampton along with visiting some new museums and basically just enjoying learning about what we have around us.

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C O L L E C T I O N

I don’t know what it is but it makes me extremely happy when I find little cards like this. I now have a rather extensive collection and it will only keep getting bigger. I think one thing I love about them is the simplicity and the ability to have such creativity in just one, very small, canvas.

Words are very powerful things and more so when illustrated. I engage, and I guess I believe more of what something is saying if it is illustrated well. Of course, some are just a bit of fun but that is what I also like, that a small card like this can make a person let out a little giggle in the shop as they read it. I don’t know what I plan to do with my collection but for now I will just embrace the happy and satisfied feeling I get from sourcing the goodens and taking them home for my home decor.

It’s the little things and simple life I guess…

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