Monthly Archives: November 2013

What I learnt this week: Items trapped in doors may cause delays…

I was looking back through my notes from this week and I decided I didn’t want to start at the start.  Otherwise it would just be me moaning about my life being drained by various situations.

Instead I will begin with the lesson I learnt.  So here we go…

There’s always something to complain about, always excuses as to why we can’t achieve our goals and always ways in which we all hold ourselves back.  BUT at the end of the day it’s all BULLSH*T.

We can get so consumed by just ‘doing things’ that we lose sight of what we really want.  It’s hard sometimes to find focus, it takes a strong plan.  And you need to work on it every day.  Not just ‘yeah someday I want to…..’  Therefore I’ve decided to stop the rubbish and make sh*t happen (to put it eloquently).

If anyone’s interested there’s a great book written by Jinny S Ditzler – ‘Your best year yet.’  Check it out if you want to plan your year ahead, to get the most out of it.

With that being said it was a good kick in the butt this week.  Finding balance in your work, social and  dream life is not easy but we can strive for it at least!  A quote my boss sent around this week cemented this weeks theme- ‘Good things come to those who work their arses off and never give up.’

Now back to what actually happened this week.  A new compliance manager started- Kamila.  I love her, she has balls.  She  won’t let us be pushed around anymore.  Woohoo.  Got my pay rise as well.  Work is on the up and up!

It’s also helpful that Lewis is there and we get to flirt, usually in the kitchen.  Where all good office  flirting happens.  I made soooooo many cups tea this week 🙂

Checked out a really cool food market near work with Steph and Lisa from the AV department.  I love discovering all the different food areas.  And  as there was real live sun that day, we sat in the park and gobbled our delicious purchases.

Unfortunately I haven’t slept much this week, due to lying on plastic sheets, listening to snoring and people coming into the room late at the hostel. On the plus I have met some really cool people from all over the world!

Thursday went to Grain Store near Kings Cross-station with Kelly.  Really nice food (I do more than just eat and drink, I swear). After dinner we headed to Ally Pally to see The National- great venue, which overlooks the city lights.

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Friday was the big one-work drinks.  Let’s just say, sh*t got a little crazy.  Didn’t get to sleep until 6am on Saturday morning!  We started at Be at One.  Two for one cocktail as usual.  Which escalated to shots, which escalated to dancing, which escalated to kissing a certain boy whom I work with.

Heading out with everyone was fun; especially with my compliance friend Camilla- that girl has not gotten drunk in a while, so after two drinks she was swinging from the chandeliers, almost literally!

Hung out with Lewis, Shelley and Kristian the following day.  At 3pm we made the worst smoothies I have ever tasted but since we were incredibly hung over we just didn’t care.  Then made the epic trip back from Watford to Earl’s court.  I was in bed at 6.30pm.  Slept for 12 hours.

Sunday I shifted again, this time to Kristen’s, near Manor House.  By the time I get to my place  I will have stayed in all corners of London.  But it’s almost time to unpack the suitcase for good. I can’t wait.

Funniest moment:

  • I tried to explain to a guy at the chemist that I wanted to buy a pair of thongs (to wear in the shower at the hostel).  I offered ‘you know, they’re rubber, you wear them on your feet, like sandals.’  After miming walking around with them on my feet he eventually replied ‘oh Flip-flops.’ Apparently thongs are G-strings here and flip flops are thongs.  That’s why he looked at me so weirdly -why would anyone put thongs on their feet?

Highs:

  • Singing Blood Buzz Ohio at The National gig
  • A kiss
  • Finishing the latest draft for my TV pilot and sending it to my writing group for feedback

Lows:

  • Packing up again
  • Having to wear thongs/flip flops in the shower
  • The cold…is coming

What I did that scared me:

  • Stood in front of the yellow line.  Wasn’t really by choice but the tube station was so crowed.  As I tried to push back I realised I was stuck as the train approached.  It was kind of exhilarating in a small way.  Next stop skydiving; I’m sure there is not that much of a difference, right?

What I learnt:

  • You have to stop making excuses and JUST DO IT!

P.S if you are wondering about the title it’s what’s written on the door of the train.  When I saw it, I laughed.  To me it was sign from the universe.  ‘You get stuck in the bullshit and you become trapped.’  But maybe that’s just me reading way too much into things…

What I learnt this week: Sparks :)

Mondayitis.  That’s all I can say about Monday.  On the way home I did stop at the local Mexican restaurant and devoured what I think could have been the worlds biggest burrito.  It was very amusing when I first walked in as they offered me two for one cocktails.  But since it was Monday I didn’t fancy sitting there by myself with two cocktails.  That would have been a slightly alcoholic move.

Whilst I was eating my dinner I messaged Shelley from work.  Funnily enough a message came back, saying that it wasn’t her.  The business card she had given me was old.  Turns out I had messaged Lewis.  Who just so happens to be the cute guy working in the AV department.  Ahhh, don’t you just love when the universe hands you a happy mistake!  I haven’t talked to him much but we had a few flirty messages back and forth.

Tuesday was much of the same at work.  Checked out a house in North Acton.  It was in the middle of nowhere, but cheap as rent!!!  Then met Clara for  dinner at Penang, a beautiful Malaysian restaurant in Sheppard’s Bush.  We chatted about our writing plans and life in general.  It’s wonderful to have made some great friends already.

Clara amd me

It was Guy Fawkes this week, so there were fire works every night.  And there were the also  sparks at work 😉  I chatted to Lewis.  He’s actually only 22 but seems older.  He has a good sense of humor, a little off beat like me.

Joined a writers group on Thursday.  We planned to meet every two weeks, to keep each other on track with our projects, analyse scripts, watch films and aim for competitions.   After being at work all day, it was inspiring to work towards what I actually want in my career.

Friday night was great.  Kristen and I met Nadelle and Ash for dinner.  We went to West End to see Dirty Dancing.  The show was a bit OTT, but fun all the same.  I will never get tired of hearing ‘Time of my life.’

Which brings me to my lesson for the week.  Making a stand.  Dirty Dancing cemented this weeks theme- “You have to stand up for yourself no matter who is in your way.”  It’s true.

I had to learn to ask for what I want.  So when I chatted to my boss and he told me  I’m doing a great job.  I asked for a raise.  He was a little dicey on it but I explained it was too hard to support myself with my current wage. It was tough because in London the job market is not great atm but  you just have to back yourself and see what pays off. 

Saturday was hectic, rushing around buying new shoes and getting ready for Kelly’s 30th.  Oh what a night.  First we were at the Cadogan for drinks and nibbles.  It was lovely to get all dressed up.  Then headed to Whisky Mist.  Man, I haven’t been somewhere like that for a while.

It was an intense night club; they had chicks dancing in their underwear!  I thought it was hilarious, because they acted so serious and stuck up.  I was like ‘Um, you are dancing in your underwear, girl!’  A lot of rich pretentious types.  But we had our fun and boogied the night away.

Sunday I relocated to the the Balmy Badger, whilst I waited for my room in North Acton to be available.  Soon I will have my own space.

Sunday night caught up with a friend of friends- Al who writes for the BBC.  It was great, wandering around Oxford Circus, sharing our writing and life stories.

What I did this week that scared me:

  • Went up to a group of guys at Whisky Mist and joined their conversation

Funniest moment:

  • Accidentally texting Lewis

Highs:

  • Kelly’s Birthday
  • Night River run to Battersea Park
  • New shoes.  Man, I love new shoes!

Lows:

  • Being very hung-over Sunday morning
  • Ground hog feeling at work
  • Moving again

What I learnt this week:

  • Sometimes you have to make a stand!

 

 

 

 

What I learnt this week: Women are not from Venus, men are not from Mars!

We are all from earth.  And essentially we all want the same thing.  To find our place and feel validated.  More on this weeks lesson soon.  But first…

It was a pretty chilled week.  Getting my head around my job.  Embracing the whole fitting in with the office peeps, which is always nice.  You know the point when you can joke really inappropriately and  get away with it.  Yep, that’s fitting in right there.

Even went out with one of the work girls (Shelley) on the Friday night.  We enjoyed half-priced cocktails at Be at One.  The best type of cocktails!  She must have thought I was ok, because she invited me to her friends Halloween party, after our bar session.  We drank ‘blood’ punch, which was really just a very strong mix of juice and vodka.

The big event this week was Kelly’s 30th birthday.  We went out for dinner to Ten Greek street, in Soho. Tapas, wine and the most delicious chocolate soufflé I’ve ever eaten.  Chatted about reaching the age of 30- feels like we are finally women now.

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Also smashed out a few jogs around Regents Park.  It was awesome running through the park in the sun on Saturday, dodging the gigantic ducks.  Seriously you don’t want to look at them the wrong way!

Headed back to stay at Chelsea.  Kelly and Simon were in France for the weekend.  So more time on my own.  Eating in, watching DVD’s, house hunting, writing, washing, getting ready for the week ahead.  It was my first weekend off from social activities, which was much needed.  Brain and liver are now revived.

Back to what learnt this week.  I’ve spent countless hours thinking that guys really aren’t from this world.  This was the first week of my life where I realised we are all human and need to feel wanted.

The first clue was a stat in the paper, which read-  ‘33% of guys want to be in a relationship.’  I just didn’t think that was true!   The next hint was also from a paper, article entitled- ‘Men are softies.’  The discovery fully developed when I joined online dating on a drunken whim.

I was overwhelmed by the response- guys wanted to meet up, chat, and wink at me.  It was so intense that I realised maybe this was not what I wanted after all and deleted my subscription.

I really thought I wanted a relationship but it turns out it was nice just to know offers were there, should I want to pursue them.  In the words of the Rolling Stones ‘you can’t always get what you want but if you try sometime you just might get what you need.’

It was funny realising that guys really aren’t from another planet.  There’s an interesting dynamic in men and women these days.  The women I’ve recently met, are a little older but are not settling down.    They’re pursing what they want in life and enjoying themselves.  They’re not hitting 30 and getting all crazy about having to settle down and start popping out babies!

However the main point I learnt this week is that it doesn’t matter who you are, we are all humans.  And whilst I do like to be alone, I also like to be with people and feel loved.  We all need LOVE.  Be it from our family, friends, or a special someone.   It’s part of the human condition.

Funniest moment:

  • One of the guys at work threw a soft football at my head as I was walking out to greet a candidate.  Who he didn’t see.  It got me right in the head just as the woman walked in.  It was probably more embarrassing than funny though.

Highs

  • Finally understanding men ( well starting to at least)
  • Dinner with Kelly in Soho, we realised we are finally women!
  • Spending time alone, which is sooo important.  Just keep the conversations to yourself at a minimum.

Lows

  • Drinking too much on Friday night!
  • Working crazy busy hours
  • Eating chips and lollies for dinner one night

The thing I did which scared me:

  • Joined online dating

What I learnt:

  • Everyone needs a little love 🙂

What I learnt this week: New buddies!

Started my 9 to 5 this week.  What a bloody drag! My life was completely sucked away from me- Monday, Tuesday and Wednesday.  I was also writing after work, trying to prepare for the London Screenwriters Festival.  I though my brain was going to implode.  Not sure I’m not cut  for full time work.  I don’t like the real world!

Lucky the job involves working with a bunch of really cool people!  And I started the same day as another Aussie chick- Kristen.  A new friend for me 🙂

Shifted to Linda’s (St John’s Wood) on Wednesday night. She kindly let me have her place whilst she heads to the USA.  Amazing!  What was even more amazing was that she lives right near Regents Park.  Which was 20 minutes from the writing festival, where I spent the next four days/nights.

Went to a pitching seminar on Thursday.  Run by an very saavy American lady- Pilar. Learnt how to sell my ‘brilliant’ idea.  The seminar was at a university so it was like the first day of school- I got to make new friends!  I met the lovely Clara, Andrew the entertaining Irishman and the enigmatic Tony, from Leeds.  If we were still at school, we would have definitely been the ‘cool group!’

After the seminar finished, I had a choice.  I had 2 hours in which I could work or spend time with my new friends.  The old me would have worked, which would have been valid.  But I heard Pilar’s departing comment resonate in my head, ‘make relationships.’  So I chose to spend the time with my new friends.  We headed for food- discovered Chipotles. OMG, best Mexican ever!

Headed back to the university as the screenwriting festival was about to open officially.  Had a drink, got our accreditation and chilled.  It was so nice to talk about dorky writer stuff.

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(I had to be creative with a pic this week, as I didn’t have a photo to add.  So I’ve decided if my new friends were cartoons this is who we’d be: Tony- Tiger, Clara- Piglet, Andrew- Eeyore and Me-Winnie)

The next few days were so inspiring, learning about the industry, meeting new people and amplifying my passion for writing.  The highlights were:

  • Making new friends, who were excited by all types of writing
  • Listening to chats from industry professionals, who offered handy hints.  The most influential session was ‘negotiating’
  • Learning how to create interesting characters, original films, writing to make an impact and the list goes on

The last session I went to on a whim.  I was exhausted, hungry and basically wanted to just curl up in a ball, and sleep for ten years.  But Clara, Andrew and me all trooped off.  With a feeling that we needed to finish this thing.  And I’m so glad we did. We walked into the session not really knowing what to expect.

This what we got- a film maker named Lance, who has been around for while but almost gave up on filmmaking as he was dreary of never getting where he wanted to be.  He decided to take matters into his own hand and produced a beautiful film based on a very personal experience.  As he shared his process with us, it was clear how passionate he was about being a filmmaker.

As he relived the story of his wonderful friend who’d had an incredibly tough upbringing, then died very young, my eyes started to well. He said after she died, he lost his dad that same week.  He was grief stricken and needed time to refocus.  Through a twist of fate he travelled to Greece, in search of some perspective.

During his chat, I felt in my heart where I needed to go.  This weekend had made it clear to me what I wanted to say as a writer.  And the direction I would need to head in order to achieve my goals. Basically there is no easy way-  you can’t go around, you have to go through the hard work.  If you want it bad enough, you will work to make it happen.

After the session with Lance, we had the closing ceremony of the festival.  We then headed to have a drink with everyone.  It was a great way to say good-bye to the people we met and talk about our writing plans.  I also ran into a girl Allie, who I worked with on a short film in Melbourne, years earlier.  That was the the third person I’d bumped into from my past, in one month of being in London. Weird but I love it.

This week I learnt how important relationships of all sorts are.  It was a reoccurring line I kept hearing- ‘make relationships.’

A lot of people, are scared of the word ‘network.’  But networking is just about talking to people and having something to say for yourself.  I can definitely do that.  If there’s one thing I’m good at, it’s talking.  But it’s not just about talking.  You have to listen and connect with the other person as well.  Basically don’t be a dick, know what you are selling and just be yourself.

It was really clear when you met people who just wanted to sell themselves. You could have told them there was a elephant with rabies about to stomp on them and they would have just kept talking at you.

That was why it was so great to meet a bunch of people who are supportive, talented and also care about what you’re doing.  Those are the people you want to connect with.

There was a session on negotiating where a lovely lady called Linda, who’s actually in the corporate world taught us about networking.  She explained there are four different types of people (four different colours).  We worked out who we were and then looked at a person we don’t get along with in life.  It became clear they were either exactly the same personality or the complete opposite.

To work on this relationship we would need to compromise, and understand their strengths/weaknesses.   Eg I am a red person- I trust my gut, am emotional, I find it easy to be open and love making friends.  Whereas the person I struggle to get along with is a blue person- analytical, strategic, logical.  Learning to understand this was brilliant because I now get how they tick and can learn how to build a better relationship.

Thinking about all I had experienced this week  I walked home in the rain.  I was truly happy.  I had made new relationships of all types- friends, industry professionals, lecturers and teachers.  I felt the rain on my skin and I smiled as I walked on.

What I did that scared me:

  • Pitching my film to a Hollywood big wig in an Elevator- 45 seconds to sell your idea!  Woah!

Funniest moment:

  • Watching a band with Andrew and Clara on Saturday night.  We sat, eating, enjoying a well deserved glass of wine and joined in singing the songs we knew.  And tried to sing the ones we didn’t…

Highs

  • Making new friends, who love what I love 🙂
  • Developing my writing goals
  • Eating Chipotle’s twice!

Lows

  • Boring Office work
  • The writer’s festival ending
  • No sleep, me zombie

What I learnt:

  • Making good relationships is very important.  DO IT!