Category Archives: Thoughts


Evolve 353… how do I love thee? Let me count the ways!


Hello, I write to you cannily with aching abs and even more aching buttocks, for I have joined the church of exercise-mad, squat jumping, active wear encased Londoners. The gym behind my lifestyle change is very aptly called Evolve and it’s the best gym you could wish to be a member of.


Since Evolve is on my road, I spent months walking past and peeking in through the window like a snooping neighbour, wondering if I could brave a class full of lean, sweaty bodies. It looked so hard-core! The members were a mixture of ages, mostly women with some attractive men shouting at them. It seemed premium and niche, lacking the usual crowd of half-arsed people you find in commercial gyms, wearing ill suited, cheap trainers from Sports Direct and a full face of make-up. Evolve is very much a purist gym; it has classes, but 100% not Les Mills classes and it has PT sessions, but not like “so what would you like to work on today, Deborah?” sessions.


Prior to joining, I was unlucky to have the worst case of glandular fever my doctor had ever seen, which resulted in the rare secondary complication of hepatitis. Bleugh. I felt absolutely horrible for months and you can read about it in detail here. Eating and resting made me feel better so I got a little… fluffy, shall we say. Basically my body started to resemble the beginnings of a collapsed trifle with muscle atrophy and undulating wobbliness. This was followed by many all-nighters working at a brutal advertising agency, still feeling so unwell. Like all sensible people, when life gets too much, I threw another challenge into the mix and got myself back into dancing. To my surprise, I successfully (but rather painfully) auditioned for a TV role alongside superstar dancer and now good friend, Zec Luhana. Sadly, after an exposure to bullying and constant bitchiness in my dance company, a lifestyle shake-up was in order.

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British Vogue has finally ripped up the rule book. Thank you Edward Enninful.



Edward Enninful is shaking things up.

From a pure make-up standpoint this cover is industry gold. It is the encouragement and celebration of FASHION make-up that Vogue covers of late have been missing. Pat McGrath is the artist responsible for this 1970’s meets Studio 54 look, a bold, colourful move away from the commercial no-make-up covers. Thank you Pat McGrath, for invigorating my industry. A make-up dominant cover is a breath of fresh air for what was becoming a very safe, samey commercial outfit. Vogue is first and foremost about fashion so this cover looks and feels much more on par with Vogue Italia, the undisputed coolest of Vogue magazines. Rather interestingly, Enninful was a contributing editor to Italian Vogue in the 1990’s. Hopefully this can only bode well.

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My dog died on Wednesday. I don’t know what to do.


Gracie died just before 2pm on Wednesday 1st November.  I am broken, in physical pain.

At the time, I was sat oblivious to this earth-shattering news, on my own in Gatwick Airport having a much needed cappuccino and catching up via Whatsapp, with my old friend Ash.  With financial reckless abandon, I tapped my card on the barrier to get the Gatwick Express home, happy to be back in London and after 10 days in LA. I’d spent my final days enjoying shopping and solo cycling adventures. I felt free and strong with the wind in my IDGAF hair, like flames encircling my burrito-bloated face. After a 22 mile cycle ride along the coastline, I inhaled cali-mex food to replenish my stores and slept like a log. Life was really great.

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20 things I learnt in 2016.



2016… It was like that scene in Jackass The Movie, where Steve O gets strapped inside a portaloo (or porta potty for my American readers), attached to two bungee cords, before shooting up into the air.  This horribly confined environment filling up with faeces, going all over the place. It was mad, nonsensical and utterly masochistic.  The sort of horror you don’t like, but can’t help watching, can’t stop watching. Much like a pussy-grabbing celebrity businessman becoming the next president of America, 52% of voting Brits making the politically disenfranchised choice to leave the EU, lots of well-loved creative people dying and ISIS doing more terrible things.  Shit.  Flew.  Everywhere.  Thankfully, the messy portaloo has landed on the ground and a fresh, unsoiled year is upon us.  Many of us are still alive and will most likely be ok.  With a sense of grit and camaraderie, we must crack on.

In my own little world, not too removed from the wider world, shit primarily centred around my family, friends, health, career, hobbies, interests and lovers (same for you huh?).  I learnt an awful lot of stuff and have to write it all down so I don’t forget.  This is becoming an annual post – read about 2015 here. In a nutshell: I got really unwell in April, recovered by the end of summer and re-prioritised. I developed a positive relationship with my body after watching it get better, and therefore liked my curves after 26 years, now feeding them regular servings of broccoli and Joe Wicks’ protein pancakes.  I danced a lot and set myself free from many invisible pressures.  This cleared room for more positive forces, inspiring growth, happiness and overall enjoyment of my life this past year.  There must be a crystal pendant I could wear to represent my developments as a deep and pensive human being, but alas I’m yet to find one.  Here is a definitive, but not complete list, of 20 things I learnt in 2016:

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The writing fear.

I’m so sorry for being a bad writer. I get ‘the fear’ you see… fear that the fizzy ideas in my head, that take the form of hundreds of notes in my phone, and inky scribbles in my moleskin notebooks, are not good enough. I have some wonderful posts on this blog, If I do say so myself – pieces of writing I am really proud of: a favourite being Note to future dating self. I worry that the next piece of writing will not come so easily, or read so emotively.

As I write, I learn more about who I am. The art of writing down my thoughts, calcifies them, ascertains and rounds up the heartfelt, the angry, the stories, the beauty product loves, and the completely silly. These ideas stare back at me, stark words on a glaring screen – ordered and clear, articulating the furore of information firing through my prefrontal cortex, and firing through my soul.

Creativity is a very intangible thing; more often than not, I work in fits and bursts of excitement and sentences that form so fluidly like a sploshing choppy river, racing through my mind, and out of my fingers onto the keyboard. Other times, I have hot, effervescing ideas shut down by frozen, still, fear. I worry these ideas will not materialise as I hoped, not be well written enough, interesting enough and without the time to shape and edit these faceless ideas… my fear grows.

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My experience of Glandular Fever and Hepatitis.


Glandular Fever is a truly horrid virus. It crept up on me one day, as silently as a warship sliding onto dark water. I’ve watched my attempt at explaining how I felt in the video below, but I’m not sure it quite does justice.

Currently, I am sat in my favourite Parsons Green coffee haunt, Hally’s – I write a lot in here, whilst slurping on matcha lattes. I’ve had a week of feeling good, telling everyone how amazing I feel, and that I’m totes better, that’s IT, no more Glandular Fucking Fever. Then, last night I had to go to bed at 9pm with a scratchy throat. I woke up 12 hours later feeling like my deep sleep never happened, utterly drained, sore and sensitive. Inside myself, I am just the same person, with the same unrelenting sense of humour and complete disregard for rules or being told off. My body doesn’t feel the same though; it feels like it belongs to an 85-year-old woman – soft and aching, scared to exercise, unable to dance, do cartwheels or jump around. In another life, the one before Glandular Fever, I went to boot camp circuit classes, learnt Beyoncé dance routines, and loved that fantastic feeling after smashing a hard gym session. I can’t do any of that right now, and it’s really getting me down. After breakfast today, I had a lie down, a shower, a lie down, lots of supplements, lunch, a lie down and some deep motivational thoughts have propelled me to started writing at 3.30pm.

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Posh people fighting on the tube and swarms of Krill.


Tensions were running high in Parsons Green this morning. The tube station platform was packed deep in Celine handbags, Russel & Bromley Shoes, a steadily rising mumble of politely clipped moans, with lots of busy thumbs on Whatsapp, sharing the news with colleagues in central London, that the Upminster trains were running a delayed service. Finally the train doors whooshed open to a reveal a dense carriage of commuters. I propelled myself forward into the mass of tangled bodies. My headphones have gone missing this week, so instead of listening to The Beibs, I have been observing people, and as a result, have become a lot more aware of my surroundings. It’s been quite nice, I highly recommend a week without headphones.

My first general observation is how West London people are very well put together, albeit in a rather samey, boring and predictable kind of way. East London people are much the same – you can identify a Dalston resident by their grubby-chic style. I could close my eyes and describe to you the uniform of apparel, draped over every Hugo and Tamara trotting past the Sloane Pony in Parsons Green: on the men, cable knit jumpers over stiff-collard shirts, brogues and quilted jackets. On the women, THAT Reiss wool coat, a Pom Pom Poodle hat pulled over fluffy, if a bit crispy looking hair and ruddily applied bronzer, you know, from a cracked Bobbi Brown compact that lives at the bottom of an oversized, overpriced handbag.

My second observation is how RUDE some people are, to the point of complete and utter obnoxiousness. Thankfully, obnoxious people never offend me, as long as they smell pleasant and don’t touch me. It’s the constantly nice, slightly drippy people you need to watch out for; you will never truly know what they are thinking. There people are most often the ones who do crazy things when drunk. You totes know what I mean.

This morning became quite the hilarious occasion as one uppity, flustered woman decided to shout at a poor man (he probably wasn’t poor) who was helplessly wedged in-between someones armpit and a green pole.

“OH MOVE DOWN WILL YOU!!” she bellowed.

The steamed-up carriage of raised arms and squashed shoulders was sleepy, until this moment. There was quite clearly no room to move anywhere. The subject of her outburst responded in the most unexpected way:

“Shut up you complete moron!”

His floppy quiff bouncing on each syllable. Smiles broke across the faces of every man and woman in the steamy carriage. A sparing explosion between one Hooray Henry, and a frazzled middle-aged woman, who probably had issues with her nanny that week… was about to kick off. In Parsons Green people are FAR too civilised for this kind of thing to get ugly, so with exchanged glances and pulled out earphones… the entire carriage tuned in.

“Excuse, me! What did you just call me?!”

“I said you are fucking a moron! There is obviously no fucking room to move down!!”

At this point, an older floppy-haired man, who was clearly a lot more zen about the situation, merrily exclaimed:

“It’s just the morning people!!”

Chuckles from the entire carriage. Eye contact was made between people, on a tube train, in London.

Whilst observing this drama, I lost my balance, possibly because I can barely reach the Distract Line rails, and consequently face-planted into a tall man’s shoulder, my lipstick leaving a perfect kiss print in pastel pink (MAC Cream Cup), on his black wool coat. I blushed and realised the man behind me had spotted this, we shared a cheeky smile. The lucky man with my lipstick print was intensely watching a David Attenborough documentary on his iPad, all about the Blue Whale, eating a swarm of Krill. The Blue Whale who was so full, he almost came to a standstill while digesting many thousands of Krill. I felt like one of those Krill, and the near stationary District Line tube train carriage was the Blue Whale, at Earls Court.

After eventually leaving the Blue Whale, I arrived at work in a lifted mood, entertained by my journey. It reminded me that little moments of such unexpected entertainment, only happen when you lose your headphones and observe your surroundings… Shouty posh twats, lipstick stains and swarms of Krill.

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Oprah – there are no mistakes.

“Stop the crazy chatter in your head that tells you all the time that you are not good enough.”

“Your being here is such a miraculous thing… your real job is to honour that, and the sooner you figure that out – ‘oh wow, I’m one of the lucky ones, I got to be here’. So how do you continue to prepare yourself? To live at the highest, truest, expression of yourself.





20 things I learnt in 2015.


the beginning of last year!

the beginning of last year!


  1. Happiness is the best beauty product of all.
  2. Nine times out of ten, you are not having a full on nervous breakdown, you just need a cup of tea and a hug. You’d be amazed how easily you can confuse the two. Invest in some good tea and find some good huggers.
  3. To quote master life coach, neurolinguistic programmer and clinical hypnotherapist Jacqueline Hurst, former heroin addict, anorexic and now champion at living a mindful life – “Without the right mindset or the right thoughts, you won’t change how you look or feel. Thoughts generate feelings, feelings generate actions and actions generate your outcome – for instance, negative thoughts always create negative feelings. When people become conscious and aware, and choose to have good thoughts, life really does change.” Jacqueline taught herself how to heal, and build an amazing life after addiction. She is one of the most wonderful people I have had the pleasure of going for coffee with.
  4. There is literally nothing wrong with carbohydrates.
  5. When in doubt, I have started advising myself as I would advise a friend who I dearly love. One of Jacqueline’s top tips.
  6. A combination of exercise, aromatherapy, friends and writing it down can fix almost any dilemma.
  7. The older I get, the softer I get, emotionally.
  8. The older I get, the harder I get, mentally.
  9. The older I get, the more I appreciate my family and want to spend time with them.
  10. The more time I spend living in London, the more I realise it is not the centre of the world; I appreciate other places in the UK a lot more for being squashed underneath someone’s armpit on the tube, daily.
  11. Unless you have dependants (this is aimed at young peeps like me), you don’t owe it to anyone to live a certain way. Do more of what makes you happy.
  12. Cellulite is cute, I appreciate cellulite. I don’t let ANYONE tell me that the dimples on on the backs of my legs are not cute.
  13. Instagram, and social media in general for that matter is not a reflection of real life. It is a heavily edited highlights reel of pictures. Do not take any of it seriously.
  14. The people who make you feel most like yourself should be kept close and treated very well.
  15. The people who make you feel anxious or sad, need to be ditched. 
  16. Very few people have it all figured out.
  17. We are all so different – each of of us have completely different ways of thinking, motivations, beliefs and requirements to live a happy, fulfilled life.
  18. Love is often best expressed by just showing up.
  19. Sleeping with my phone far as away from my bed as possible, with my outfit laid out for the following morning, are the single two most effective things I can do to maximise my energy levels and productivity the next day.
  20. Mindfulness, mindfulness, mindfulness.