A love letter to the women in my life

For a while I thought I didn’t need you. I’m sorry for those years when I believed girls weren’t funny or interesting or smart or anything I now believe to be completely false. I wish I could take back those teenage years where I declared myself a guys girl and hung out exclusively with boys because men are great, but life isn’t complete without a lady tribe.

I’ve had my ups and downs and my teenage years were challenging, to put it lightly. But, I feel like life has rewarded me bucket loads in my 20’s with women who inspire me and keep me strong every single day. My family is nearly completely dominated by feisty women who I once saw as domineering and now see as awesome and hilarious people with very unashamedly vibrant personalities. Thank you for teaching me that I don’t always have to do it on my own and that sarcasm truly is the highest form of wit.

To my friends, from all walks of life, thank you for pushing me to see life from different angles. For encouraging me to stay passionate about my opinions, to get absolutely blotto drunk and not apologise for it and to get my bits out and be proud of it. Seriously, you ladies make me believe that soulmates aren’t just reserved for romantic connections and I’ve found a handful of you who have changed my life forever.

Friends Women empowering

To the girl bosses who I have had the pleasure of working with and aspire to be like one day. Thank you, from the bottom of my heart, for believing in me and creating a space where I can become a mini boss. You inspire me every day to work harder and truly believe that I can one day be as bad ass as you.

To the inspirational women I gawk at on Instagram. I scroll your feeds, leaving likes a plenty and watch your stories in awe of how you achieve so much. From yogis, to vegans, to feminists and writers, I want to be like you when I grow up. You push me to realise you are never too young to start and no dream is too big to achieve.

Women are incredible beings. Seriously, have you ever been in a room full of forward thinking ladies? Maybe it’s the surge of hormones practically bursting out of the windows or the strength in the face of opposition, but when we unite, we are one hell of a powerful force. And this isn’t just because our periods sync up making us one big, hormonal army! I am guilty, as is every woman ever, of saying things I shouldn’t. I’ve called a woman a slag or judged another for a choice they’ve made and I’m here to say that that shit is not on and I promise to never do it again. We should be supporting and loving eachother, not trying to drag one another down. And that includes every single one of you. Women with disabilities, women of colour, women of all sexual preferences and women who identify themselves as such, nobody gets left behind. So give someone a compliment, support female businesses, look out for one another because when we are together, there is no stopping us. I love each and every one of you and I’m so proud of everything that you are.

Who is your most inspiring woman?

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Don’t live your life on regrets

As a yogi – apologies for the wanky word – I know how important it is to live in the present, yet I often find myself looking backwards, even if only to see how far I’ve come.

I was tidying my room (you’ve never seen so much dust in your life, I swear) and because I’m easily distracted, I came across a scrapbook my sister gifted to me when I was 18 and started to flick through. Tragic old selfies aside, it gave me a whole mix of feelings. Some were pride at how many things I had done and achieved in my little life but then I turned a page and felt an overwhelming sense of regret about what I saw.

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Regret is a terrifying word to me. I hate the thought of having something that I cannot change, eat me up inside to the point of regret and it’s something that I’ve worked hard to avoid. Sure, there are many things I have done in my life that I’m not particularly happy about, most often involving alcohol and men but I think to regret those experiences is a mistake. I’m a big fan of the phrase ‘Everything happens for a reason’ and every time I find myself thinking ‘Urgh, I wish I hadn’t done that’ I make myself think what it’s taught me.

“Everything happens for a reason..”

Perhaps it teaches you what you don’t want in life or maybe it put you down a path that you wouldn’t have taken otherwise and made you the person you are today. I think a positive can always be drawn from these experiences, even if it’s just that you would never do that again, it’s still a lesson! The scrapbook page in question, had potential careers that I wanted to do at the age of 18 and listed on it was law and journalism, two futures I was deciding between to apply to University and in the end, I chose neither. In fact, I scrapped University altogether and although I am so happy I did, there is always that pang of ‘What if?’.

What if I had have studied Law? I would be well on the way to becoming a Barrister. Or Journalism, I may have even scored a full time job at a magazine by now. But would I be happy? Maybe, but maybe not. I’m not saying I’m at an optimal stage in my life, I’m still a struggling Actress trying to make something of my life but I truly believe where we all are right now, is exactly where we are meant to be. And nothing kills your happiness faster than dwelling on what if’s. If you truly want to change your path, do it! But if not, don’t let regret destroy where you are right now.

Do you have regrets? Or are you a live in the moment kind of person? Let me know your tips!

Making friends as an adult is weird

Trying to make friends as an adult is a minefield. Gone are the days when we ran up to someone and said ‘Hey, want to be my friend?’. Now there’s politics and social niceties that have to come first. And what about breaking up with a friend? Now that is one awkward conversation. But not all relationships have to be that way.

As a child, asking someone to be your friend is considered normal. Sweet, even. And it’s just so darn easy. Your weekends are filled with playdates and sleepovers and you see your best friend every single day at school. Then adulthood bulldozes it’s way in to your life and every day turns in to once a month – if you’re lucky! In fact, most of the time, those school friends become distant memories as your life moves on and you grow apart. Which is terribly sad, correct? Well, not always.

Friendship goals

I’ve never been one to have millions of friends. In school, I had friends who would literally have ditched me in seconds for anyone slightly cooler – which, let’s face it, was everyone! It wasn’t until recently that I actually found my own little girl gang and we went away on holidays and had drunken friend dates in little cafes. I also have guy friends whom I share acting related interests, other friends who would jump at the chance to do a downward dog with me (get your mind out of the gutter, I’m talking about yoga classes) and even friends I only ever see in professional settings. And they are all important. However, they may not all be forever.

As an adult, you will go through many friend stages. Some of you, will have people you will know all your lives but that doesn’t mean their friendship is the most important or even the most healthy. I had friends from school who were incredibly toxic. We would only see each other to go out drinking and they were the type who would only ever applaud my downfalls. And yet, at that point, they were my oldest friends. And they were still important because they taught me exactly what I didn’t want my life to be.

It’s the same with relationships. I’ve recently come in to the thinking that perhaps the idea that we are supposed to only love and be with one person for our entire lives, might be a bit unrealistic. I have had some incredible men in my life who served a purpose at that point and I got to wondering why none of those relationships lasted, especially when we got on so well. But I don’t think that’s the point. I think those relationships were there for me to learn something and we met for a reason but it was never meant to last longer than it did. For example, my first boyfriend taught me romance, love and innocence. A guy I dated made me realise that I wasn’t ready for a relationship. And most recently, S pushed me to have confidence in my passions. Yet not one of them, was meant to last a lifetime.

It’s the same with friendships. We are all on this roller coaster of a ride called life and sometimes we pop in and out of other peoples journeys to help us or to give them a push when they have come off track. The only way these relationships turn sour is when we hold on to them for longer than we were intended. Just because something ended, doesn’t mean it was wrong or should be thought upon negatively. And finally, if you meet someone who you really vibe with, send them a message and meet up with them. Sure, it’s nerve wracking and weird but they may just be the little push you’ve been looking for!

I would love to hear what you think about this in the comments below! Do you feel the same or perhaps completely disagree with me?

The pressure to be a people person

People like people. The best people in life get on with other people. They’re people persons. Charming and schmoozing their way in to job interviews, parties and meeting the parents. Meeting new people is a breeze, in fact, they like it. They embrace the small talk until they make firm friends with everyone they meet. They are the best society has the offer. The people who have it all. And I’m afraid to admit, I’m not one of them.

Reading alone, people person, thoughts

I love my family and friends. Hell, sometimes I even like having a natter with a stranger. But you know what I love even more? Being alone. Sitting at my desk typing this is heaven to me. Spending an evening having quality time with me is the dream and I even prefer driving all by myself, with nothing but a bit of ‘Kisstory’ to keep me company. This seems to clash horribly with the fact that, for some benign reason, people seem to like spending time with me. I’m not a complete hermit. I’ll happily spend the day with my sisters, or a morning in bed with my boyfriend and actually – shock horror – enjoy it. I can even spend 5 days straight in work with a group of people and love the experience. But then I have to carve in an evening or better, an entire day, where I get to delve in to my work with not a human in sight.

Is this just me? Because I feel like everyone around me is so great at being a people person. For me, small talk just sends a shiver up my back and I feel awkward as ass when I meet new people. And I feel like a failure. Actually, society makes me feel like a failure. Why wouldn’t I want to spend time with people? Why do I get quite grumpy if I’m made to spend all day with my customer service costume on. Perhaps it’s because I don’t feel I can be myself around others. Or I feel like there is a certain level of professionalism or character I’m expected to be, so it feels like a day long performance.

Reading a lot of bloggers I admire, it seems I’m not the only one who struggles with social interaction. However, for me, it doesn’t seem to bother me as much as most. Sure, sometimes I feel less than because I can’t easily have a room of strangers in the palm of my hand but mostly, I don’t really care. Perhaps it’s that gift of age kicking in that I just couldn’t care less what others think of me, but I’m genuinely happy with who I am. And I’ve realised that maybe this is the better way to be. I know if I managed to create friendships wherever I went, I’d get absolutely nothing done and as a bonus to that, I’m actually one of those few people who enjoys spending time with themselves. Although it does feel a bit sad typing that!

Moral of the story: Be happy and content with who you are and don’t feel bad if that person turns out to be different from what society deems the ‘perfect person’. You’re the one who has to spend the most time with yourself anyway!

The mirror is being a bitch

Today is a very exciting day because it is my first collab with Aly’s Journals. To celebrate her reaching 700 followers, she is doing a big collaboration with bloggers and companies and because I love everything her blog stands for, I sent over one of my poems that has been sitting waiting for an opportunity to be seen. 

Pressure, beauty, make up, bare faced

It’s called ‘The Mirror is Being a Bitch’ and you can check it out over on her blog. I wrote it because I was tired of the pressures women have from society. Every magazine I flick through has articles on how to be slimmer, which ridiculously expensive product is promising to make you pretty this month and playing on all our insecurities to make a bit of cash. I see my beautiful friends, sisters, Mum, glare in to the mirror, squeezing bits of flesh or desperately plucking and concealing anything that is deemed less than perfect. Yet all I see is perfection in them. My Sister, with boundless energy for her daughter and time for all of us. My Mum, whom I find hilarious and strong and vulnerable all at once. My friend, with her fire red hair, and long limbs, yet she still paints over her freckles and lines her eyes to hide from the world. They are all incredible women to me and I am angry at society for telling them that they are less than. And then I look at my Niece, who innocently puts on a tiara and dresses in one of my sparkly tops and has no shame in shouting that she looks stunning. It breaks my heart because she truly believes she is funny and smart and yet I know given the chance, the world will try to break her spirit. Which is why I want us all to be four again. To look in the mirror and see through the eyes of our younger selves, and love what we see, exactly as we are. You can read the poem here, please let me know what you think!

You can also follow Alys on Twitter trust me, she’s lovely!

What happens when the spark disappears?

I believe everything happens for a reason. People come in to our lives to teach us or inspire us or set alight a fire you never knew was there, but that doesn’t mean they will stay forever. And that’s okay.

I’ve lived my life based on the extremes in life. I like to see people at their very best and even their very worst. I like to experience what people love with an absolute passion but also despise. I thrive off of those intense feelings and what it feels like to be someone else. Probably why I ended up being an Actor but it’s also shaped other areas of my life. One being relationships.

sparks

I search for sparks. In fact, I collect them. That tingly feeling down your spine when you meet someone for the first time or the butterflies that crop up on your first date. I believe a kiss should be electric, like John Tucker and Kate when her secret wire gets wet and starts letting off shocks. Those are the unforgettable moments in life and I don’t think we should compromise. What happens when that disappears though?

You know how it is, you’ve been in a relationship for years and suddenly the kisses aren’t as exciting anymore, a hand hold doesn’t make your heart flutter and sleeping next to each other is just that. And I know, time moves on into a deeper kind of love and attraction and that’s a life changing experience all by itself. In fact we often get in to trouble by craving the ‘spark’ so much and cheat on the person we love for that one night of intoxicating firsts. But how long is that spark supposed to last?

“What are sparks when compared to a relationship of a lifetime but what is a relationship of a lifetime without sparks?”

I’ve started seeing someone, in fact, he’s now my boyfriend and at first, I was obsessed. We both were, soaking up every word the other said and spending our days apart texting each other non stop. A month in, and I felt like the spark was gone. Everything started to irritate me and the days upon days we spent together started to feel like suffocation. Me being me, I bulldozed in ready to cut it off. He’s an amazing guy, perfect for me, but I was terrified to never feel that burning fire ever again and after all, what is a relationship without sparks?

We talked it through and since, I can tell you, the fire is well and truly burning. I had had a long, tiring week, was also hormonal and I acted irrationally (shocker). There is, however, the niggling voice inside me that asks what I will do when it happens again. Because it will. Relationships aren’t all roses and dates and that little bubble that makes you feel untouchable. They are also arguments over who is taking up the most room in bed. They are long days at work and money struggles. But they also support, a best friend, inside jokes and trust. And you can’t honestly compare a relationship and connection of a lifetime to the fleeting sparks of your first date.

 

Can we have it all?

Carrie Bradshaw is easily my least favourite character on Sex and the City, however, sometimes she raises good questions. Like: can us women, have it all? The car, the house, the kids, the relationship, the banging social life and an incredible job (preferably an unrealistic job as a writer who has one column a week and yet still affords designer labels and an apartment in New York). And the answer? Yes, of course we can, but maybe not in the way we think.

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My view is, something has to give. I read one of those inspirational quotes that told you to replace ‘I don’t have time’ with ‘it’s not a priority’ and see how it changes your perspective. And honestly, it’s pretty monumental in helping you to see what you really value most in life. For example, my friends wanted to meet up recently and I am currently swamped under a lot of work so I text back to say that I couldn’t right now. Then when I changed it in my head to ‘that’s just not a priority for me at the moment’ I realised how much my view had shifted. It’s not that I don’t love my friends, it’s that other things are more of a focus, and that’s okay.

My point is, you can have it all, but by all I mean the things you value most. Perhaps being a stay at home Mum is your priority right now and if that makes you happy and you have the means to support yourself, great! On the flip side, perhaps ‘all’ means a flat in London with a high powered career, but it may mean sacrificing starting a family, even if it is for right now. For me, right now I want to build my career and be successful in multiple areas, but it means that sometimes I miss family get togethers or I can’t grab a cocktail with my friends all the time.

It all boils down to, like always, what you really want. Not that Instagram models that look so picturesque or your school friend on Facebook, but what ‘having it all’ means to you. Comparison is a dangerous thing and no one wants to live a life that looks great on screen but that leaves you feeling empty. And be aware, having it all isn’t always as easy as it seems. Balancing everything takes work and you won’t get it right every time. But if you stick to what is genuinely a priority and what needs to be sacrificed now and again, you’ll soon start nailing it. How’s that for you Ms Bradshaw?

What does ‘having it all’ mean to you?

23 things I’ve learned in 23 years

Has anyone ever heard of the saying that we change every 7 years? It’s something my Gramphy always spouts on about and it hit me recently how much I seem to have changed since turning 21 and what better way to summarise it than in a cheesy post for my birthday. Because are you even a blogger if you don’t do a nostalgic blog post for your birthday?

Crema, archway, scenery, from where I stand, 23rd birthday

1. Birthdays are less about fretting over how many Facebook birthday messages I get and having a ‘mental’ drunk night out and more about doing things I actually enjoy and seeing those I love.

2. Exercise isn’t about killing yourself in the gym to look good on that one week of the year you are in a bikini.

3. A follow on to that, yoga is incredible for your body and mind. I wish it didn’t take until my 20’s to realise this.

4. Relationships will happen when you least expect it. Oh and stop picking the dicks when you know it’s not going to last. Yes, even the one with abs that look like they were cut out of marble.

5. It’s okay to not like what other people like. You’re not in school anymore.

6. Likewise, it’s okay to shout about what you like. I’ll try now; I love sex (especially talking about it on my blog), I hate baths, I hate disney, I hate getting blackout drunk, I love yoga, I love researching about health, I could go on but we all get the point.

7. The birth control pill is actual poison.

8. I’m not ready to get married or have kids but it’s okay to feel a pang of FOMO when it seems like everyone else is doing this.

9. 9-5 office jobs are really not for me.

10. I actually have a lot of good ideas for freelance work/writing/business, I just need to have faith in myself.

11. Always wear a condom and never trust a guy who says he’s ‘been checked’. Not worth the trip to the STI clinic.

12. Don’t set in stone who you are. It’s okay to change and evolve, let it happen.

13. Romance is great but love isn’t all roses and wine and dinners. It’s mutual interests, shared values, a sense of humour and really good sex.

14. Being blood related doesn’t excuse shitty behaviour and family isn’t always the one you were born into.

15. Success doesn’t happen over night and nothing ruins your 20’s more than thinking you should have it all figured out by now.

16. Live life by your own rules. Just because someones idea of happiness means a mortgage, kids and marriage, doesn’t mean yours is any less happy in comparison.

17. If a guy is strictly religious, it’s probably not gonna work out. Ditto if he lives in another Country and his family don’t speak English. I mean, so a friend has told me….

18. Every year you become more sure of yourself. Someone may be older or more experienced than you, but it doesn’t mean they’re right. Question everything and always keep your own integrity.

19. The world isn’t going to end if you step outside the house without makeup on.

20. Age may be just a number, but don’t waste life thinking you will have time later. Later may never come and now is as good a time as any,

21. It’s never too early to look after yourself. I’m talking sun protection, eye cream, 3 litres of water, eating lots of plants and exercising before you even reach your 20’s. This body is your temple and if you burn it down, you can’t just buy another one.

22. Dream big. Always.

23. And finally, do what makes you happy. Stop doubting yourself and just light up that little world of yours. No one else will.

Now I just have to take my own advice…What things have you learned this year?

Have we ruined sex?

Have we – yes, me, you and our other 20-40 something friends – ruined sex? Sex back in the day was seen as a sacred act. It wasn’t even long ago that sex before marriage was an absolute no go whereas now we have premarital sex on the first date or even with some sweaty person we picked up in a club. Now, personally, I am a passionate defender of a persons choice to casual sex, as long as it is safe and consensual, but I have been challenged in my views by a fair few people recently, mostly the defenders of sex being an intimate and romantic experience.

sex-gesund

I decided to look at the function of sex. Sure I have had sex that was loving, looking in to each others eyes and holding one another after. I have had kinky sex that was a lot of fun and sex that just ended in tears when I fell off the bed (story for another day perhaps!). I have also had sex that was purely to fill a need, wham, bam, thank you maam, I can have a great nights sleep now. But not any one of those deserves more respect or idealisation that any of the others.

And I refuse to agree that our generation has ruined sex in any way. As we are always told by old people with a glint in their eye, they were the ones who invented sex. We aren’t doing anything new, we are just a bit more liberal about it and actually *shock horror* talk about it rather than brushing it under the carpet. And just a side note, sex is great, I promise you ruining it is not our intention, give the whips a try Grandma!

Romantic sex in a relationship can be a beautiful thing. In fact, I love relationship sex because it means it is trusting and can often be on another level to casual sex. But that doesn’t mean that sex outside of a relationship, or marriage even, has to mean that it is worse or any less intimate. Nor does it mean that sex in relationships is boring or unimaginative. The key here is the person(s) you are have having sex with and your personal choice. 

And that’s what it boils down to, doesn’t it? Your choice. In the guidelines of safe, trusting and consensual, you can spice it up and down as you damn well please. Chain your partner to the bed, invite someone else along, dress up as dogs or have a 5 minute perfunctory bonk in the dark if that floats your boat. Do your thing and don’t let society tell you that you are doing it wrong because sex is as unique and personal as we as humans are.

I’d love to hear your thoughts on it! Leave me a comment down below.

The future is female and we’re coming in tribes

I won’t be polite when a man whistles at me

Or tells me my tits look nice

I’m not afraid to be rude when my ass is grabbed at

and  I wasn’t ‘asking for it’

by wearing a skirt and dancing in a club,

By drinking alcohol

or by generally being a human fucking woman.

I am a woman who likes sex, and sports

but I refuse to be told I’m not like the rest

Because the rest are strong

Not strong for a woman, but strong like an ocean

The rest are brave

Not brave like a man, but brave like a warrior

The rest fight for equality every day

To be seen and heard as a person with a voice

Not a microphone with boobs

Not someone who is smart for a woman

That is not a compliment.

I am fed up of fighting to be heard

of being the assistant, the receptionist, the nurse

of aspiring to marriage and 2.5 kids

of always being behind the man

to celebrate their privileged success.

My sister is funny,

My mum fixes the car

My Nan saws up wood

These are the stories I want to hear

Not of a man who once was great

Or a man we all secretly hate

A woman who fights demons

breaks barriers and builds bridges

every single day

and doesn’t need an award or a title to know she is great.

Don’t be a dick, realise

The future is female and we’re coming in tribes.