Do Something

At the start of a new week, let's take a moment to think of the days ahead.

We have no idea what will come, or how the days will pan out for us.  

But even if we can't determine what will happen to us, there is one thing we can control ... and that's our own behaviour. 

I love this thought for a Monday ... and I don't know about you, but I think it's a great way to start the week.

Let's not spend our days feeling angry, or bitter, jealous, or sad about things we can't control.  Let's not dwell on the things we don't have or the opportunities that have not come our way.

Instead, let's do things that we're proud of. Let's be kind to each other. Let's reach out a helping hand to another. Let's find the positive in all things, where possible. Let's be grateful for what we have rather than being resentful that we have not been given things that we think are owed us, or that we see others enjoying.

Reaching out to others, being that 'friend' and going out of our way to make a difference in our world - maybe that's what we need to aspire to this week.

A positive mindset won't just help others, it will have an impact on our own wellbeing and that has to be something to be thankful for! 

Have a great week everyone!


Monday Future Self

Always be ...

Just a quick thought for this Tuesday!

Apart from anything else, this picture features Winnie the Pooh ... one of my favourites. .. a poet and a leader and just full of fun. And his friend Tigger, full of energy and optimism ... What a pair!

May we always be like Pooh and Tigger and have good friends around us.

And may we always be all of these things!

Happy Tuesday everyone!


Tuesday Acrostic

And .... breathe

If you know a bit about me, you'll know that I love to swim in the sea.

I find it so relaxing, and so good for my mental health. The exercise, of course, is great but it's also such a calming experience, as you feel the water on your skin, the breeze on your face and, if you're lucky, the warmth of the sun on your skin.

In the summer time I do swim as often as possible, and it's been a joy this week to get in a few dips ... in between the hours at the computer ... working as a freelance writer and also concentrating a lot on researching and writing a new book.

Ouaisne Bay Sept 2021We have lots of beautiful beaches and bays here in Jersey in the Channel Islands - some rocky coves, and some beautiful stretches of glorious sandy beaches. 

One of my favourites for relaxing and swimming is Ouaisne Bay in the south west of the island's at one end of a very popular tourist beach - St Brelade's Bay - but usually much quieter.

This week I managed to get a dip there ... and it was glorious. A great opportunity to ... just breathe really.

The sound of waves gently crashing on the shoreline can take me to a different place and can really help with my anxiety and stress levels. I find the sound of the sea so soothing and so good for 'de-stressing' my life.

So today, I just want to share some of those sounds with you and hope they will help you to.

Filmed at Ouaisne Bay this week.

Have a great weekend and ... stay chilled!







Be Different!

Yesterday in this daily blog I was talking about the amazing children's author, Roald Dahl - it was his birthday yesterday, which is now celebrated as Roald Dah Day.

Hope you enjoyed it!

But I wanted to continue thinking about this amazing writer ... he was a real 'one off', a man with a huge imagination. Someone who was just true to himself. 

He never learned to type, he did all his writing in an old shed  with sharpened pencils. He invented a medical device to help his son when he suffered a head injury and the family could find nothing to help him. He made up his own language - or at least a language for his BFG (Big Friendly Giant) ... Gobblefunk!

And, of course, he wrote all those wonderful stories and much more ... see yesterday's blog if you want to read all about him!

Roald Dahl was unique!

Now, we can't all be world famous authors, or indeed hugely famous for anything.

But we can be different!

We all have things which make us stand out from the crowd, it's just sometimes we desperately try to fit in to other people's moulds and forget just to be ourselves! Instead of standing out and being proud of our differences, we squash them or hide them away. 

For most of my adult life I've been a little 'different' to others, but I did spend years being tempted to 'fit in'  - sometimes I DID do that, wore what people thought I should wear, looked like they thought I should look ... and that was just for starters...

But no longer! Now I am accepting my uniqueness and  I'm looking always for the things that make ME  different. And if people don't like it, they can lump it. I'm not going completely weird, but I am trying to be true to myself a lot more. And I'm finding it rather liberating!

So today ... I just want to encourage us all to embrace ... well ... ourselves!

We never know what we might uncover and how much fun we might have or where life might take us when we truly just become more 'real', more as we should be.

Have a great day everyone!

Be yourself

An Eskimo Proverb

For this Sunday I'm sharing a thought from Eskimo or Inuit spirituality. 

It's not something I know much about except that it appears to be a fairly simple philosophy ...  but I love this thought.

The more I read this to myself, and out loud, the more I realise that although the words seem simplistic, it's meaning is profound and actually gets deeper the more I reflect on it.

If we're honest with ourselves, we don't need much in life, really, to be happy. Just warmth and light ... and peace in our relationships, hearts and minds.

We might think we need to surround ourselves with 'stuff' and to have all the latest gismos and on trend items in our homes, our wardrobes and in our garages or driveways ... but actually that is all materialistic and can be lost at any moment.

So, today, may we learn to be content with the simple things in life, the gifts that we have been given and the people who love us.

Have a great day everyone!

Eskimo Proverb

Wellbeing Wednesday

How are you feeling today?

Is this a Wellbeing Wednesday for you?

I'm reminded that for a few years when I was the presenter of the BBC Radio Jersey Afternoon Show, an hour every Wednesday was devoted to subjects related to our  health and wellbeing. It was a really interesting hour, with different subjects and guests talking about all sorts of issues.

We covered physical as well as mental health, and explored alternative medicines and measures that people employ to keep themselves well. I learned a lot.

When you are working on a daily show, I soon discovered that to sustain the programme day in and day out, I needed some sort of  'structure'.

Planning ahead is vital. It can be unbelievably exhausting if you arrive at work every day with no idea about what is going to happen and how you're are going to fill your programme. If every day of the working week is a struggle to fill space, it's just so stressful! Andin the long term, that's certainly not good for your wellbeing! Putting a little plan together can actually keep you well!

It's also depressing if you keep getting knock-backs and disappointments, but the truth is ... ringing possible guests and contributors at say 10am asking them to chat to you live on the radio at for example, 3pm, can result in constant refusals. Believe it or not people have lives and work, and not everyone can just drop everything to have a chat with a radio host, not unless they have an urgent need to do so.

Yes I'm aware that lots of media people think the world revolves around us ... why WOULDN'T everybody just pause their lives to be on the radio in half an hour's time? But the truth is, life is not like that! We have to work around others. 

Yes, there's always flexibility, of course, because it might be something happens that day that you need to respond to during the show. But mostly you can plan most of your guests and subjects in advance and work around them if you need to.

The trick when you're working on a long running production - and I have worked for many years not just in radio but in (live and recorded) television so I think I know what I'm talking about - is to have a plan and even a 'schedule'!

You can look ahead and see if one day in particular is an important date or anniversary  in the calendar ... you could book guests to reflect that. You can source guests who might have an event planned, and you can think of ideas for what we call 'stranding' - subjects which pop up regularly which you can plan in advance, featuring issues you think might interest your listeners. These can be pre-planned.

This 'stranding' also means that people tuning in to your show may feel that they have an 'appointment to listen' if they want to. They know that a subject may be coming up at a certain time, on a specific day of the week. If you're running a 'series' you may want to run it around the same time every week so that people know to listen in!

I know what you're saying ... 'well you can always play another song or run some sort of survey or competition where it's mostly YOU chatting'?

Yes, that's true, but BBC local radio in the UK is supposed to be predominantly 'talk' and based in the community, featuring local conversations which interest local people. Well that was the original intention and aim anyway. The BBC is not a' commercial' station or set of stations which rely on mostly music. 

Anyway, although I loved playing music on the radio, when I was presenting I'd much rather chat to someone else who is far more interesting than me rather than just wittering on into the microphone about myself, the things I've been up to, the people I've met, the places I've visited or are connected to and the things I'm interested in. Giving a little of yourself is important, but not too much I always think!

We can all  be rather self-centred, it's true, and we would often rather talk about ourselves than let others speak. Maybe many of us would rather push our own ideas than listen to the other person. If you're at a party, how often do you find yourself chatting about what YOU are up to, or YOUR opinions on a matter, rather than being quiet and letting others talk and finding out about what they are doing? It's all part of the skill of  'Active Listening' which I was blogging about last week.

And as I said at the top, apart from anything else, when you talk to different people, you learn SO much! 

And I believe it's never too late to learn!

It takes a lot of work to put together an interesting radio programme every day, especially when you're working either alone and producing your own show or working with a very small team. Researching subjects so you can ask sensible questions is important, I think.

Some presenters don't do that. They go into an interview rather unprepared, relying on stuff they 'think' they already know,  and so often it can become more about pushing their own thoughts on the issue. It's more about THEM than the subject and the person they are talking to! 

Wellbeing Wednesday acrosticAnyway, back to Wellbeing Wednesday on the radio!

This acrostic reminded me of it and today I share it with you ... and hope you will be inspired.

Wellbeing Wednesday on the radio wasn't MY idea, rather it came from a fabulous young producer who I was working with at the time - Emma-Jayne - and she did most of the legwork on the series, booking guests, compiling those all important notes, introducing me to some of the wonderful people in Jersey who are part of the 'wellbeing' community. 

Of course, lots of people choose to concentrate on this issue in the middle of the week ... which for many is also called 'Wellness Wednesday' ...  so it was a great fit.

It was a lovely time for me, working with EmJay ... what a privilege to share office and studio space and ideas with someone so fabulous!!! We bounced off each other and it was glorious!

The Afternoon Show as originally envisaged (1-4pm) is now no more ... the schedules have changed, different people are in place. Actually the focus of BBC local radio is changing in some respects although I hope the 'localness' will never be entirely lost.

But I will always remember Wellbeing Wednesday with fondness and in fact the idea did gain another life, because until the COVID19 pandemic hit us, every Wednesday a group of  local wellbeing practitioners were setting up stall in Jersey's main town of St Helier, sharing their expertise and experience.  All under the 'Wellbeing Wednesday' banner!

And who knows, that idea might continue yet? I haven't given up on it entirely ... 

Maybe .... Watch this Space!

Meanwhile, if you have a moment,  I invite you to read the attached message. Perhaps read it a few times and feel inspired and motivated.

Have a Well Day everyone!



Mental Freedom

This week I was so happy to spend time with a dear friend who I haven't seen for quite a few years. 

Because of the COVID 19 pandemic, travel has been hard if not impossible, but it was fab that my friend and her family were in Jersey for a short holiday.

We spent a day together and chatted and chatted and chatted. It was great. 

We got talking about how we've changed over the years and I admitted that the older I get, the less I seem to care about what other people think about me.

When you're younger, what other people think seems so important. You want to be liked, so you try to fit in with what you believe or are told others want from you. We often define ourselves by what we think others want, we change ourselves when people make comments, we live a life we think will be acceptable to those around us. We sometimes stifle our own wants and needs and even our personality to 'fit in'.

What you wear, how you dress, what you weigh, the things you have around you - you find yourself squeezing yourself into other peoples' moulds.  Do they have a better job, live in a better house, have better holidays - what is 'better' anyway?

Constantly comparing yourself to another person can be exhausting. But now I'm getting older all that seems less important.

Yes, I know we all have to live in community and it's important that we are aware of other people's needs and the laws of life which keep our society safe and healthy. We can't live a completely 'selfish' life where we don't take anyone else into consideration.  

But so what if people think I'm a bit mad? So what if they don't like the car I drive, or the fact that I don't have all the latest clothes or tech devices? Who cares what they think of what I do for a living? So what if people don't like what I wear or how my hair looks, or if I'm a bit squidgy around the edges and not thin as a rake?

So what?

It's MY life ... and I'm beginning to be more comfortable in my own skin. 

Mental FreedomsSo when I found this online I just thought it was worth sharing.

When we're not constantly comparing ourselves to others it's a bit of a relief.

The pressure is off, and we can just start to enjoy who we are, what we have NOW and to appreciate every moment.

I'm only human so occasionally there's still a niggle inside when someone says something which is a bit upsetting, or looks sideways at me as if to say 'she's wearing WHAT?' ...

But I'm learning to release it and even ignore it, and remind myself that, at the end of the day, my life is my own and other people aren't happy with that ... who cares?

Keep smiling, keep believing in and being true to yourself, appreciate what you have and just relax and enjoy every moment of life!

Have a great day!

Song on the Summer Breeze

Happy Sunday!

For those of us who are Christians today is, of course, known as 'the Sabbath' ... a day traditionally set aside as a day of rest, a special day.

These days, however, Sunday for many is a working day. So not much rest being had.

I've never had a problem working on a Sunday because in my line of work - journalism and broadcasting - it was a necessity. And many people in many professions also have no option but to work Sundays, including doctors, nurses, carers and other health professionals.

If you like your Sunday newspaper then someone has to work in the shop to sell it, and if you enjoy a Sunday lunch out at a restaurant, then those who cook and serve your meal will, of course, be working the Sabbath. Our actions and decisions impact on the ability of others to set one day aside for rest.

For many years when I was working for at BBC Radio Jersey, I presented the Sunday morning Breakfast Show, which is still focused on all things spiritual in the island. And during that time I learnt that the 'sabbath' can be interpreted in various ways.

Although many would say Sunday should be kept special, because it's a day for church and spiritual things, I think that the main point is that us humans DO take at least one day to rest from the turmoil and 'busyness' of life.  Whatever day that might be. We can't keep working day in and day out without a break. Because we WILL break after a while.

And as for meeting God on Sundays, well of course, we can meet God any day ... every day actually ... and at any time. Although on the sabbath maybe we take more time to feel the presence of the Almighty, we can do that anytime.

Whether or not you are a person of faith, today I share these words with you which I think we can speak, or pray, whatever the time of day, whatever the day of the week.

I hope by the time you lay your head on your pillow to sleep tonight, your heart will feel lighter, your mind will be clearer, your bones will feel strong and your heart will feel like singing.

Be blessed!

Song on the Summer Breeze


Like a Butterfly

What makes you happy?

Maybe it's just the simple things in life ... like family, spending time in the garden, or perhaps walks in the countryside or on the beach? Things that don't cost anything but make you feel really happy, deep down inside?

Or are you someone who chases happiness and tries all sorts to MAKE yourself happy? Buying stuff, going places and seeing things that others say are wonderful? Acquiring possessions which you think you need?

I'm a bit of both, I think, and I'm guessing most of us are the same.

But when I saw this thought online it stopped me in my tracks.

Sometimes I try SO hard to find happiness that it evades me. Or when the thing I've yearned for actually happens, it's not as wonderful as I had anticipated, and that's just disappointing. Worse still, I miss it because I'm too busy chasing other dreams and wishes.

What if we stopped trying and just let happiness come to us? Turn our attention to other things or maybe concentrate on helping make others happy, and forget about our own needs, and then just see what happens.

It's a thought isn't it?

Like a butterfuly