Ted Talks – The Power of Vulnerability – Brene Brown

Brene Brown is a research professor at the University of Houston Graduate College, she has spent 16 years studying vulnerability, connection, courage, empathy and shame.

Brene has spent many years looking at the idea of connection; she has asked a lot of people about connection and she found that when she asked about it people would talk to her about disconnection. When she asked people about love they would talk about heart break. After speaking to numerous people, she realised that there was a common theme of Shame.

There was a great fear of disconnection. In order to have connection we have to have vulnerability and often the fear of vulnerability would lead to the disconnection.

Those who have connection had a greater sense of worthiness and a strong sense of worthiness. These people had embraced their vulnerabilities as they believed it made then beautiful and they though it was a necessary part of connection. They all had in common courage, compassion and connection as a result of authenticity.

The one thing that keeps us out of connection is that feeling of being unworthy of it. We often numb our vulnerabilities, and this ends up numbing our joy and happiness and then we become miserable and then when we come to look for purpose and meaning we find ourselves feeling vulnerable. It becomes a viscous circle of events that many struggle to break away from

We have to realise that we are all imperfect and we all have vulnerabilities and the way to embrace connections is through sharing these vulnerabilities and becoming our true authentic selves. We have to believe we are enough. When we release this, we are kinder to others and ourselves.

I really enjoyed this Ted Talk with Brene Brown as it was very interesting but always very funny. There was a light-hearted approach to this talk but also it covered a serious topic. I would like to listen to more of the talks that she has given in the future.


Take Back Tuesday – Exeter

Just before Christmas I visited Exeter for the day, I have never been to Exeter before, but my friend was born there and always said how nice it was, so I had always wanted to see what all the fuss was about.

The first thing that we did was going shopping – they have a massive amount of shops including my favourite Urban Outfitters so that instantly won me round. There are lots of mainstream shops but also a lot of independent ones so there is a good mix of shops available to look in. there was loads of café, bars and restaurants to go in all around the city.

The German Market was also on when we were there which made me like it even more as there was a great Christmassy feel to it. The city did not seem busy for a city if that makes sense which is why I think I enjoyed it so much. There is a lot to do but not the overwhelming business that puts you off cities, so it was very enjoyable.

We walked alongside Exeter Quayside and look in the cute little shops along the waterfront. I could only imagine how nice it must be down there in the summer.

The city is very vibrant and has a lot going on and if I had my choice again, I would definitely look at going there if I could as it seem like the perfect place for students.

I would highly recommend a trip to Exeter if you get the chance.

December 1st

Yayy it’s the first day that we are actually allowed to get excited about Christmas!!
Every year during November I enjoy looking for advent calendars to see which new ones have come out this year. This year I bought my boyfriend the Reese’s peanut butter cup advent calendar as this is his favourite chocolate. We never used to be about to get this advent calendar in the UK so as soon as I see it I have to buy it just in case they are not for sale in all shops. I have got a Thornton’s advent calendar this year which I am really excited about.
When I was younger we used to have one of those advent calendars that my parents would fill up with little chocolate treats/ lollipops. As there was three children in my family this was really good because it meant we didn’t have to share one advent calendar where only one of us got a chocolate each day.
Even my dog has an advent calendar and she seems to know that she has one because last year I remember each day at a certain time she would know that it was her turn to have her advent treat.
Today I am going to go and do some Christmas shopping for my family members. I have actually already brought quite a lot of my presents this year already which I am really happy about as I am never usually this organised. Although I am struggling to think of present ideas for my mom as she is always the one that I struggle the most to think of gift ideas for. I enjoy going Christmas shopping but usually I go quite early so that I can be done before it starts to get really busy.
Hope you are all enjoying the first day of December 😊

University Advice

A lot of people are currently preparing to start University – many may have already moved into their halls and are in the midst of Freshers Week. I was in this same position in 2010 and I had the best time at University and thought I would write a blog to share experiences and to help you make the most of your university experience.
1 – Make Lots of Friends
My best piece of advice would be to make lots of friends. You will meet a lot of different people during your first few weeks of University who are all in the same position as you they are in. They are in a new place and don’t really know anybody else. Everyone is looking to make new friends so make the most of it and interact with a lot of new people. A lot of the time your first friends will be those who you share you flat with and you will begin to create a safety bond where you can go on nights out with them and feel safe because you already know these people even if it’s only been for a day or two. Making friends with housemates is great but it is important to remember that just because these were you initial friends it doesn’t mean you cant make other friend who you relate to more elsewhere. You may make friends on your course or from an event or night out. In my friendship group I had a mixture of flatmates and course friends a lot of who I am still in contact with now.
2- Take Part in Freshers Week 
Freshers week is a great place to meet new friends and get used to your new living environment before starting your degree. You will meet a lot of new people and they will show you around the campus and city you will be living in. There will be lots of events and they will show you what the university has to offer. You can sign up for different sports and groups that are available. Usually there is a lot of freebies too… especially free pizza.
3. Take Advantage of Student Offers
There are a lot of places that will give discounts to students so make the most of it. Take advantage of the freebies and discounts as there are a lot available and you won’t be able to enjoy these once you have finished your studies.
4. Work Hard But Enjoy It
This may seem silly but as much as you are able to enjoy yourself at university you have to remember to prioritise your studies as this is the reason you came to University. Some of my most memorable nights out are from University but I had to make sure that I set aside a certain amount of time each day to do my university work or to prepare for lectures. I had to ensure that essays and assignments were completed on time. Of course I still spent a lot of time watching box sets and getting to know my friends but there still needs to be time for working.
5. Enjoy Yourself
At some point during the time you are at University there will be times where the work load takes over and you feel like you can’t have any time for yourself because you have so much work to do. A lot of the time I would work better after I took a couple of hours away from my computer and relaxed and did something fun. Sometimes having a little break and running off some steam helped me have a new perspective and would actually help me to work better and stop me from having writer’s block.
University was one of the best times of my life and I would say enjoy it as much as you can. Ensure your work is completed but have fun doing it. When you finish University and start your working life you will miss University so make the most of your experience and make many friends and lots of memories. Have fun!

Take Bake Tuesday – Fraser Island

A few years ago when I was travelling in Australia I went one of their trips to Fraser Island. I went on my own and it was one of the last trips that I did before coming back to the UK. This was the first trip that I had done in Australia on my own and I was quite nervous because I did have to travel to a different part of Australia for the trip. Travelling around Australia is super easy though as there are loads of coach companies you can use.
The trip to Fraser island consisted of camping on the island with a group of people and driving around to different areas of the island using 4×4’s. I had seen pictures of the island and it looked amazing so I knew it was something I needed to do before I returned home. As I had gone on this trip on my own I was super nervous because I didn’t know anyone but I soon realised there was a lot of people in the same situation as me. We were split into groups of 8 and these were the people who you would be camping with and those who you would share the car with.
We went to the local supermarkets before we left to stock up of food for the next few days and then we set off to find Fraser island. We drove though the forests and along the beach. Our car did at one point get stuck in the sand but luckily we were able to get out. We visited Lake McKenzie, the champagne pools, Lake Wabby and Eli Creek. We also visited Indian Head where the views were amazing and we also stopped by the Maheno Shipwreck. We had BBQ’s on an evening and enjoyed watching the sun set and rise on the beach.
This was a once in a lifetime trip and It was truly an amazing experience and I thoroughly enjoyed every minute.


It’s Saturday!!

The sun is shining and it’s Saturday…. What a perfect combination.

After a busy week I have had a fairly slow start to the weekend but now I am up and ready to go and enjoy the sunshine. I think we are going to go and explore Worcester today. I have been to Worcester quite a few times before and I always have a good time there. There is quite a few shops to look round and a lovely walk by the river. It’s that sunny today I might even have to myself to an ice cream 🙂

Last night I was reunited with an old friend and I really enjoyed catching up and laughing at all the funny stories we have from when we were younger. It’s funny how no matter how long it’s been since we last saw each other it is always the same and feels like it is back to how it was when we were teenagers. We were laughing at how times had changed because usually we would have gone on a night out when she comes back but yesterday we just went on a nice walk…. We must be getting older! It’s always nice having old friends back in your life even if it’s only for a couple of hours.
I feel quite motivated today so when I get home tonight I think I am going to get back onto the job hunting and see what jobs pop up. I am still waiting for an interview to be scheduled but I can’t keep waiting around for it as there is never any guarantee that I would even get that job and I could miss out on another opportunity while I wait. I’ve got to keep trying and then something will eventually appear that I am really interested in.

Anyway I am off to enjoy the sunshine…. so make sure you enjoy it too!

Wednesday Day Dreaming…

Well we have reached Wednesday and it’s national hump day. I personally don’t mind Wednesdays as I know I only have two more work days until the weekend. For me Tuesday is worst day of the week because you psych yourself up on a Sunday night ready to handle Monday but by Tuesday you are well and truly back to work and it is ages away from the weekend. This week is already going past quickly so hopefully it will continue that way and it will be the weekend before we know it.
I am already looking forward to the weekend as one of my childhood friends is coming home and we are meeting up for a catch up. She lives a couple of hours away so we don’t see each other as often any more but when we do see each other it is just like old times. We usually catch up every couple of months and reminisce about old times and laugh at how ridiculous we looked when we were younger.
The weather is supposed to be warm again this weekend… it has been slightly warmer today and the rain from the weekend seems to of disappeared so fingers crossed!
I am hoping if the weather is nice I will be able to go adventuring somewhere different and go on a few nice chilled walks. Walks have turned in to my favourite thing lately… not only because they don’t cost anything so it helps me to save but also I am just really enjoying being outside. They help me to feel relaxed enough to be able to reassess certain areas of my life in order for me to be able to figure out the next logical step.
I am going to try to sneak in a decent walk tonight as after being in the office all day I feel like I need to get some fresh air. Maybe someone should invent outdoor offices and then I wouldn’t long to be outside all the time….although I would get very wet with the English weather. Maybe its best to keep the office in doors and I’ll just go on a few more walks.