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Hold It In Your Hearts

It's not been a good week for the world. In fact I'm not entirely sure the world has had a truly good week in years, but this week in particular has hit that fact home for many of us.

Between the politics, the results that didn't go our way, the terrifying headlines and the terrorists it's becoming harder and harder to believe the world is good, that we have evolved, that dictators, world wars and inequality will ever be a thing of the past. It's been hard to get out of bed. It's been hard to look at social media without crying. It's been hard, despite wanting to out of defiance to carry on.

The Manchester attack, feels closer and crueller than any other I've lived through, despite the fact that I was on a school trip in London on the day of 7/7. It feels rawer, more real.

I cried immediately and I've been holding back the tears ever since. I cried every time I saw a plea for a missing person and every time another name was pronounced dead. 

But I also cried every time I heard a story of heroism. Of the taxi driver offering free lifts, of the homeless man running in and holding a woman in his arms. I cried at pizzas being delivered to hospitals, at Sikhs showing solidarity at the vigil, at incredible poetry.

And I felt every tear roll down my face, soak into my chest and find a home in my heart.

Because it hasn't been a good week for the world, but the good is still there, and my biggest takeaway from this week is that I will hold every tear I've cried in my heart for as long as I can. So that the sad ones will be there when I hear of any attack happening anywhere, so that every act of terrorism feels as close to home as this one, so that I don't become immune to the cruelty of this world and so that with every heartbreaking headline, I remember the tears that came from the empathy and the good and the heroism that humanity has shown this week. 

Because that is what the world needs now, humanity and empathy and any gleam of hope that we can hold on to. Hold it all in your hearts, remember how much an attack on your doorstep hurts and feel it when it happens half away across the world and remember for every person who committed an act of evil this week there were a hundred that committed ones of love.

To everyone out there hurting this week, I am with you, but lets carry on loving this world and one another, as much as Ariana's fans love her x

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Hate Public Speaking? Me Too, but Here's How I Get Through It...

Hey everyone how are you?

This is a post I've been meaning to write for about a year, and one I know several of you have asked for.

Public speaking is something I'm both really good at, and also really really bad at. I know that doesn't necessarily make sense, so let me try to explain.

I've always been a pretty confident person. I can get up on stage and perform in front of 100s of people without a second thought. I like to think I'm outgoing, and good with new people, and I like to think I come across as someone that knows who she is. But like everyone I have my ghosts, my doubts, and my nerves.

In secondary school I fell out with the cool kids in the first year and I couldn't do or say anything without feeling like everyone's eyes were watching me, with that particular brand of teenage viscousness only teenage girls can wield. Suddenly I was torn, I wanted to carry on being me, answering questions in class, trying to make friends, but I knew I couldn't do it without being scrutinised. I'd put my hand up to answer a question, knowing I was right, but loosing my nerve half way through, and suddenly noticing my voice begin to shake. The boys in class picked up on this, and started to sing baba black sheep at me (because my voice sounded like a sheep) and this viscous circle continued.

Now before this turns into too much of a poor 13 year old me post, I should tell you that I didn't let this put me off(because I was a bit of a know it all in school and liked to be right) and that while my nerves made me vibrate more than a Nokia 3310, they never got to me on stage. And eventually we all grew up, and while I'm not really friends with anyone I went to school with anymore, I finished school happy.

And I thought I'd left my nerves behind me. In fact I went to uni pretty cocky about my public speaking skills. I studied English Literature and Theatre Studies, and in my first year, one week I was on stage performing without so much as a quiver of nerves, in front of 50 people a night, and the next I was doing a 5 minute presentation about Angela Carter to a group of 15 people in my Literature class, and I shook so much, to this day I can't really remember what I said.

It became pretty clear that I needed to find some way of taking the confidence I have when performing it and applying it to all public speaking situations. 

So, I'm not naturally good at public speaking, but I have come up with a number of tools that *most* of the time, at least make it look like I am, and hopefully they can help you too.

Is it really embarrassing to try?

Happy Wednesday folks how are you?

I'm currently on lunch and I'm trying to distract myself from checking my phone every 2 minutes, and well, it's not really working, and this post probably won't get finished until midnight but, hey I can try.

Why the phone twitching you ask?
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