30 things to do before you’re 30

You guessed it, the big 3 0 is approaching and honestly, I couldn’t be more excited!!! I know that doesn’t tend to be the usual reaction to hitting this particular milestone, but I have a theory that proves it’s the best year ever!

You care less about what people think;

Me and my grandma regularly have chats about that fact that although her body is ageing, she still feels as though she’s in her mid-twenties. Her thoughts are the same, she still swears at the tv when watching Love Island, she treats herself to new things then hides it from my aunties and pretends she’s had them for ages. She’s hilarious, and she’s content in herself. As you age, you care less about the trivial things and what people think, and focus more on the here and now.

You’re much better off now;

It’s so easy to underestimate how much you can physically learn and grow from life experience in that decade between 20 and 30! I could never have predicted the past 10 years of my life, and I imagine the same applies for the next 10 years. During your 20s you’re still finding your feet, many are still studying, and lots have no idea what they’re doing. As we approach 30, there seems to be less of the scrambling panic, and more clarity of which direction you’re heading

Your friends are real;

This one is so important, and I was one of those super naive people who thought I could be friends with every person forever – hate to break it to you, but this is NOT the case. As you grow and develop, the cracks will show and those weak friendships find it too difficult to handle the turbulence. By the time you’ve hit 30, you know what you need in a friend and what they need from you. You’ll escape your caterpillar cocoon and your solid friendships will lift you up like a butterfly 🦋

In light of my impending age, I decided to put together a bucket list of things that I’ve done that have made the biggest difference to my life in the past 10 years. I hope this list inspires you to tick some of these things off – or if you’re feeling brave go for the full list! There’s still some things I’m yet to do, I’ve got 5 months, let’s see if I can do it! Here we go….

1. Skydive

I’m terrified of roller coasters! I absolutely hate that feeling in my stomach 🙈 so naturally skydiving was never top of my list. However, a bit of peer pressure and yolo attitude and did it! I’d never ever repeat it – willingly stepping off a moving plane once is enough for me thanks. But wow, it’s a magical experience

 

2. Visit the at least one Wonder of the World

It’s so easy to live in the here and now and forget that we live a matter of miles away some of the most incredible wonders in the entire universe. Seeing them in person makes you believe the unbelievable

3. Spend a day in a museum by yourself

I did this recently and I vouched to make this a regular occurrence. When your mind has no distractions, it can imagine the most wonderful things. It’s surprising how long you’ll stare at something when your mind connects with it.

4. Take a solo trip

I’ve taken many trips by myself, but I realised that I’ve always had a purpose for them. Usually I would meet my friends over there, or be working abroad. I’ve decided that I need to visit somewhere on my own with the sole purpose of visiting. Let’s see if I can manage it before I’m 30

5. Have a girl’s trip

(Or a lads trip) Going away with a group of friends is a story that you would be crazy to miss! It’s chaos, unity and comedy all rolled into one. You think you know your friends now? Go on a trip with them and make memories that you can only talk about with each other 🤣

6. Go on a Tinder date

I’m afraid of online dating (maybe even all types of dating!) I just can’t handle the cringe 🙈 However, I’ve listened to far too many hilarious tinder date stories, and even had two friends marry their tinder dates – so I’m definitely missing something here. Whether I get a marriage or a story, it has to happen

7. Work abroad

I’ve done this a few times, the first time being when I was 18! I packed my bags and booked a one-way ticket to Greece where I had my first professional dance job. It taught me a lot about independence, and how to interact with all different personality types. Plus I made a lot of memories and friends that I still visit all these years later

8. Live away from your home town

Most people experience this through university as it’s a great opportunity to move to a new city and try out independence whilst working towards your big goals. I’d actually already lived away from home before I went to uni but it was truly a life-changing experience living my day to day life in a new place. You learn a lot about yourself and you’re forced to grow. You don’t have to study to live in a different city, why not spend a year living in London or Newcastle or Birmingham to experience something new and figure out where you’d like to settle down and why.

9. Try Floating mediation

This is awesome!! It’s also known as a Sensory Deprivation Tank because it blocks your senses – You’re in the dark, you wear earplugs, you float in body-temperature water so that you can’t tell where the water ends and your body begins, the lid in closed so you get used to the subtle salty smell – this ultimately allows you to completely relax. The experience keeps you in that strange phase between being asleep and waking up which I think feels really magical.

10. Book a mystery holiday

When I was younger my mum used to collect vouchers in the newspaper and we’d end up paying next to nothing for a family weekend in a UK seaside town. The catch was that you didn’t find out where you would be going until you had paid for it. SURPRISE! I know this probably fills lots of people with anxiety and dread, but I really would recommend it! You get to experience a place that you may never have visited otherwise. I did this recently with a European break and found out that I’m going to Venice in November! Other ways you can do this is through flight comparison sites, there’s usually an option that says “Can’t decide where?” then it gives you a list of all the locations that are cheap to fly to from your nearest airport. Alternatively, you can do it the old-school way, close your eyes and stick a pin in a map.

11. Ask your grandparents about their childhood

I know that I am extremely fortunate to still have three of my grandparents in my life, and many of you know that my grandma is my best friend. We cook together (well, she cooks and I eat it), we watch Jeremy Kyle (and she talks all the way through it) and we talk and talk and talk. Somehow, she always brings everything back to some story from years ago and talks about a life that doesn’t even seem real to me now. I used to roll my eyes when she’d go off topic and wonder what this had to do with what we were talking about at the time. As I’ve got older, I’ve become more and more fascinated with her childhood and I’ve learned so much just by listening. It doesn’t have to be your grandparent, but if you have somebody in your life that has lived three times as much life as you, I’d encourage you to listen to them. It could be a neighbour, or a family member, somebody you look after. Anybody, but it could change the way that you not only see them, but the way you see the world and the value of life itself.

12. Write a journal

I wrote a diary as a form of therapy when I was a teenager. Everything that happened each day went into my daily journal – all of my interactions, feelings, plans and thoughts filled book after book of my teenage years. Reflecting on your day is important as it helps you gain clarity, and when you look back you can see how much you have grown. When I started to feel more in control of my emotions, I stopped journaling, however I think that now is the best time to write. Time for some stationary shopping I think 😊

13. Read the Harry Potter books (again)

If you have never read any of the Harry Potter books – where have you been for the past 20 years!? Even if you don’t see yourself as a reader, or if you’re not a fantasy person, or if it’s just not your thing – I would encourage you to just read one of these books! They are some of the most imaginative, descriptive and beautifully written books I’ve ever had the pleasure of reading. So much so, that they really help to bring out your own creativity. Give it a try, and if you’ve already read them, read them again – it will be like reading a brand new story as you’ll pick on things that you missed the first time.

14. Be a tourist in your home town

I don’t think anybody does this because it’s so awkward! But the one thing that made me realise I need to be a tourist of my home city was when my friend came over to visit from America. She was absolutely obsessed with Leicester city centre. It was hilarious to me, but she was fascinated by the old buildings and the tiny side streets, she kept taking photos and asking questions about Leicester that I had no idea how to answer. Through her eyes, I saw the beauty of my city and once I got over the initial awkwardness of it, I took the most incredible photos that didn’t even look like they’d been taken in the Leicester that I knew.

15. Go to one of the world’s biggest parties

I love a party so it will probably come as no surprise that I have jumped on planes to travel to some of the world’s best parties. The Moon Party in Thailand, Rio Carnival in Brazil and Mardi Gras in New Orleans! These experiences each deserve a blog of their own because I had the best time experiencing them. I still have many more that are on the list, so think about where you would like to go and add it to your bucket list.

16. Write a letter to your future self

If you want to experience something extremely powerful, you need to try this! Write a letter for a date in five years time, or in 10 years time to yourself describing what your perfect day would look like. Describe your day from start to finish, including where you wake up, who you spend your time with, what you do with your day, how you feel – include as much detail as possible. You’ll learn a lot about what you want for yourself and you can start taking the steps to get there from now.

17. Read “Your Best Year Yet”

This is an annual activity that I’d recommend to everybody, but especially for a big milestone year like 30 – I can’t tell you how important this exercise book is. It will help you to decide what you want out of your year before it even happens. It will prompt you to think and plan and ultimately ensure that each year is better than the last.

 

18. Do that one thing you’ve always wanted to do

We all have that one thing that we want to do, whether it’s applying for a new course, changing career, starting your own business, reaching out to somebody you’ve not spoken to for years. It could be anything! I know it’s sitting at the back of your mind and occasionally causes you to think “what if?” For now, those two words are harmless, however, life is extremely short and later on down the line, this could lead to regret. Do it! Whatever it is, just go for it. I tried out for an NFL cheerleading squad and I made the team! That was my “what if?” – and now that I know the outcome, I don’t have that niggling feeling.

19. Find out your ancestry

This is something I really want to do, I think it’s so important to have an understanding of where you came from. Almost instantly people will notice that I have green eyes and although I know that my Bajan grandad had light eyes and light skin like I do, I would like to know why. There’s a story there somewhere and I plan to find out what it is

20. Take a personality test

We all have different personality types, and whilst we think that we know ourselves very well, many of us go through life not knowing what personality type we are, therefore not understanding what we need more of or what we need to avoid. A YouTuber that I follow recently did a personality test and watching her video inspired me to want to do it. She said that everything made so much more sense after.

21. Get a pet

It’s so funny that I’m saying this, as most people at the age of 30 probably already have a pet, or even a child! But for those who don’t, get one. Even if it’s a hamster or goldfish, having somebody to look after helps you to be consistent and you will definitely get to know your soppy side

22. Make a photo album

In an era of Facebook, Snapchat and Instagram, nobody prints photos anymore! I’ll probably sound ancient when I say this, but I remember my first girls trip (to Magaluf at 18 years old) we had a disposable camera each and they’re some of the funniest photos I’ve ever seen. I made this into a photo album (physically, not on Facebook) and I’ve made lots of albums since then. I’d recommend it, especially for any significant trips and experiences that you’ve had.

23. Learn a new skill

We get older, and sometimes we think that we know it all. Sorry to break it to you, but that is far from the truth – you could have studied Scientology for 45 years and you’d still have the brain capacity to learn a lot more. Whether it’s playing an instrument, learning a language, baking, gardening or astronomy, stimulating your brain will keep you mentally younger for longer

24. Physically challenge yourself

This is a great way to turn 30 in style! I’m not one of those people who like pain, even the thigh burn after a gym sesh is not for me. However, challenging yourself physically and putting your body through something that you didn’t know you could do will give you an incredible sense of achievement and your body a kick up the backside. I have climbed the beautiful Mount Fuji, completed the Tough Mudder Half and cycled from Leicester to Paris (400miles) in four days. Doing these things has played a huge part in getting me through a gym session or even a tough day at work. I can say to myself “Well, at least this isn’t as hard as cycling to Paris!” Challenge yourself, you won’t regret it.

25. Cleanse your body

I know that your 20s are for living life to the fullest, but years of partying, eating junk food, being around smoke, alcohol and pollution can cause toxins to build up inside your body. These toxins can cause all sorts of subtle reactions to your body, including tiredness, weight gain, skin breakouts, the list goes on. You wouldn’t buy a car and expect it to survive forever without being serviced and looked after – the same with your body. A cleanse can work wonders for clearing out the toxin build up and give you the boost you need.

26. Do some public speaking

Most of us would prefer for the ground to swallow us whole than to speak in front of a room full of people. It’s an introvert’s worse nightmare! I love to speak, but publicly? Nah thanks! I talk way too fast, stumble over my words, pronounce everything wrong and lose my train of thought. However, they’re exactly the things that make us human and relatable. I recommend you try it, you never know how your words might make someone’s day.

27. Volunteer for charity

This is the generation of giving; it’s becoming increasingly popular for us to give back – it’s is a huge part of millennial culture! Do something to raise money for a cause that’s important to you – not only does it feel great to do, but you’ll be helping the cause directly with their mission. Side note – don’t be afraid to get your hands dirty. That makes it more fun!

28. Scuba dive

Ok this is something that I never thought I’d be saying – mainly because I can’t swim and I’m terrified of water that is any deeper than 1.5 metres. However, I was lucky enough to scuba dive in the Great Barrier Reef and it was an experience I’ll never forget. Everything is in slow motion down there and it reminds you that no matter how big you think the world is, it’s twice as big down there! (And I only saw a teeny tiny bit)

29. Go on an African safari

This is still yet to be ticked off my list, but I’ll be visiting Kruger National Park in November this year, so squeezing it in just before I’m 30. I’ve never met a person who didn’t find their safari experience life changing, and I can’t wait to see it too! I just wish David Attenborough was coming with me….

30. Go to a Disney theme park

It surprises me any time I meet an adult who has never been to a Disney theme park! I think a lot of people think they’ve missed the boat by the time they get older, and I can’t tell you how untrue that is. I enjoy Disney parks more and more the older I get. It’s a sweet escape from reality, the attention to detail is insane and you cannot HELP but fully immerse yourself into the theme. I’d highly recommend you visit it, I know adults who have cried when they visited! Feel free to take a child with you if you’re not sure it’s your thing 😏

I’m not saying that you shouldn’t enter your 30s without completing this extensive list, but these are the things that I believe have helped me to grow the most, as well as some things I know it will only get harder to tick off as I get older. Life is supposed to be a wonderful adventure, so I believe it’s important to experience new things when you have the opportunity.

Have a think about what you might like to do before you hit your next milestone and enter your next chapter in style 😊

Lots of love, Sherilyn

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The most interesting foodie hotspots abroad

If you’ve ever had a conversation with me for more than 5 minutes, it would probably become very apparent that my passion for food is high up on my list. I love food, and I’m not ashamed to admit that I have planned entire holidays around cultured food experiences. It still surprises me that there are people in this world who eat purely to stay alive – not for pleasure. That may sound extremely naïve of me, however if you’re a foodie, then you may also have difficulty understanding the same thing.

In my opinion, food is the one thing that we all have in common – love it or hate it, we all must eat to stay alive. So my question is, why doesn’t everybody make it as pleasurable an experience as possible? I thought of a few reasons why this may be the case;

  • Food can be a sensitive subject – the big reason is that not everybody can get their hands on food as easily as the rest of us can. Sometimes it’s extremely difficult for westernised people, with our 24 hour supermarkets and convenience cooking to fully understand how lucky we are. And when we are reminded that not everybody can enjoy food the way that we can, we may feel an underlying sense of guilt and helplessness.
  • Additionally, we all have different ways of coping with stress and our mental health – food can play a huge part in our emotional experience, whether it’s overeating or undereating, we can very easily look to food as a way to take the edge off of whatever we might be going through.
  • With plant based diets becoming increasingly popular, a strong divide in personal food choices has created a cultural shift. I believe there is now hesitation and reluctance for people to truly enjoy meat or dairy publicly out of fear of offending others.

Don’t worry, we’re not about to get into a huge debate about who should eat what and how to make food a positive experience for everyone. Preferences and choices are different for everybody. However, as a “self-certified foodie”, I wanted to pick out of few of my favourite dining experiences that I’ve had around the world and hopefully prove the point that food is not only about the taste, it’s so much more than that – it’s all about the experience.

🇺🇸America is a country that has my heart when it comes to the best greasy roadside cafes, homecooked southern food as well as glamourous restaurants with a view and a chance of spotting celebs. For that reason, I’m going to start with The Big Easy, The Birthplace of Jazz, The Voodoo Capital of the World, Paris of the South, The Home of Mardi Gras, N’awlins – or to translate, New Orleans. A mixing pot of southern charm, a disturbing past and natural disaster survival. This really was a place that I knew would be one of my favourite cities before I’d even booked a flight there.

I arrived, armed with a list of things to do and dishes to try and boy did that city deliver!!

Coops Place – The Taster Plate 😋

Coops Place

If you would like to experience the authentic taste of New Orleans all on one plate, I cannot recommend this dingy, hole in the wall enough. The chalkboards on the wall list everything from gator-on-a-stick, to real southern fried chicken, to the city’s famous dish – red beans and rice. To make it easier for you to decide, the taster plate has it all, and compresses what would be 6 individual meals into one incredible dining experience. Wash it down with an ice cold beer and you have passed your New Orleans initiation

My other personal favourites;

Crawfish boil

Homemade gumbo

Courtesy of the wonderful Brian Webber

Café Du Monde’s sweet AF beignets

🇯🇵 Japan has been on my bucket list ever since I used to trade shiny Pokemon cards in the primary school playground. I am proud to say that it is one of my favourite places on earth and I do not say that lightly. Landing in Tokyo felt like a dream and so did the rest of my visit for the next 10 days. Everybody is so polite!! There, you will find the most eccentric outfits, incredible nature and some really unusual experiences.

Let’s take Maid Café’s for example; many tourists flock from near and far to visit these cafes that are so secretive, you are unable to take photos of anything other than your plate of food. (They are very strict about this.) We queued on a cramped staircase for almost an hour with a combination of tourists and locals. The queue was worth the wait as my curiosity to visit revealed that these maid cafés were even more incredible than I could have expected.

To cut to the chase, my Maid Café experience consisted of all the maids singing a Japanese welcome song as we were walked to our table, our waitress (maid) calling me Princess Sherilyn all the way through the meal, she turned the pages of the menu for us, we were summoned on stage for a photograph where we were made to pick out bunny costumes and props, and our food and desert was presented and decorated in the most hilarious and adorable way.

My other personal favourites;

Robot Restaurant

Nakano Broadway Ice Cream

🇹🇷 My friend lives in Istanbul and she has told me time and time again that I would absolutely love it there. It just so happened that dates just didn’t seem to line up for the longest time and I’ve only just visited her there for the first time this year! My only regret is that I hadn’t visited sooner! It’s an incredible city to visit, full of culture, full of food and full of beauty. Honestly, I don’t even know where to start, because there was so much good food, but I’ll start right at the beginning with my very first Turkish meal – breakfast.

My friend, Yaprak, asked me what I would like for breakfast, I said “you choose” and she reeled off a 5-minute-long list to the waiter (who didn’t write it down). He just nodded repeatedly then disappeared. 15 minutes later, I was in foodie heaven!

My other personal favourites

Anything in the Grand Bazaar

The Wet Burger

🇦🇺 I spent a year backpacking around Australia and I knew that there were 3 things I definitely had to do during my visit; dive the great barrier reef, learn to surf and try the local Aussie delicacies. What I didn’t realise until arriving in Australia is that kangaroo meatballs are just casually stocked in supermarkets next to the chicken and beef. It really surprised me! If my non-foodies made it this far into the blog, they’re probably thinking that meat is meat and why should I be surprised that a particular animal is eaten there and not back home – honestly, I don’t know. I suppose it’s just local human conditioning. But I found it super weird. Although I knew that when I got a bit more settled I would do as the Romans do and give it a try.

That “try” came when me and some friends took a road trip up to the Cape Tribulation.

We stumbled across a little café called Masons, and it was like stepping onto an old movie set. A beaten down roadside café in the middle of the rainforest – what more could we ask for? On the menu featured the infamous “Roadkill Burger” This was basically a mixed burger that contained a combination of all different meats minced together and then BBQ’d on a grill. My only concern looking back is that I don’t think I ever got a clear answer about whether it really was roadkill or not. We all gave it a try, along with the mini sliders which featured the Aussie classic delicacies; Kangaroo, Crocodile and Emu. Surprisingly good, although it probably wouldn’t be my first choice on the menu.

My other personal favourites

The Queen Victoria Night Market

The Tramcar Restaurant

I guess the point I’m trying to make with this (super long) blog post is that food not only fuels our bodies, but it fuels our lives. Some of my most memorable life experiences have happened over a meal 😊 I want to inspire you not to limit your food experiences and to try new things when given the opportunity. I’m a strong believer that anything can be enjoyed in moderation, so use those taste buds and start your foodie adventure

Thanks for reading,

Sherilyn xx

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Smile because it happened…

Nostalgia is a strange emotion, yet it’s almost overlooked in the world of feelings.

The issue with nostalgia is that it hits us constantly as we work through each chapter of our lives – kind of like the recurring sequels of Bring It On. It just keeps coming back.

There’s a two-sided coin with loss and renewal and almost always there’s a delay in our acceptance in this. On one hand we are happy to move on from one chapter and approach our new adventure or new situation; but at the same time, the positive memories from the previous experience follow us around like a confused cloud. Sprinkling happy memories at the times that we are struggling with our new path. I’m not sure if you have experienced this, but it’s so unusual.

I’ll take you back a few years to when I lived in a damp and mouldy house in London with three of my closest friends. I don’t think I’ve ever experienced tiredness like it, I had four jobs that would all start one after the other! First thing in the morning I’d be spraying perfume in a huge department store, by the afternoon I’d be folding clothes in the dingy basement of a retail shop on Oxford Street, then I’d run across the West End to tear tickets in one of the theatres and finally end the day serving cocktails in a swanky bar in Chelsea. Disclaimer – this was not everyday thank goodness, most days I just did two jobs. Just 😬 Anyway, some people may call this crazy, but I thought this was the norm. I knew that if I wanted to live in London and still have some form of epic social life, I had to work my socks off. It actually didn’t occur to me at the time that I could learn skills that would allow me to out-earn all four jobs and just do one 🤦🏽‍♀️ But that’s a different story.

The house that we lived in saved us some serious money because it was dirt cheap. However, this was mainly because the mould problem was out of control – our walls would actually be dripping with water and the number of shoes we all threw away because they’d get covered in fur was ridiculous. We all were constantly sick and run down and anyone that would come to visit, would leave coughing and spluttering! Additionally, one day one of the girls got home before we did, and realised that the house had been broken into – the entire house was tipped upside down, our personal belongings had been thrown around. They went through everything. We were all extremely scared and completely devastated. The interesting thing about that night is that we grabbed all of our quilts and pillows and every weapon we could from the kitchen and we all slept in one room together. We chatted for hours and huddled close, we were grateful that none of us were home taking a nap while the intruder came in, we giggled about the fact that we had absolutely nothing of value in the entire house and we bonded and showed each other that it was ok to be scared, as long as we had each other.

Moments like this don’t happen everyday. And although we’ve all moved on to muchhhhh better paths, it’s hard at times to not miss the minimal responsibilities that we had, the cheapest rent in the world, the spontaneous nature of life, lying around streaming reality tv and eating endless takeaways without gaining weight! When I look back I rarely remember the tough times, just the great moments – that’s how nostalgia works, and it can confuse the hell out of you.

The same thing happens with past relationships or friendships, jobs and experiences. They say that everything in life is either a lesson or a blessing; So when a chapter ends, smile because you were fortunate to experience it. And take the time to understand why it was part of your story. There’s always a reason, no matter how difficult it is to see at first. The fact that you’re even feeling nostalgia shows that you are progressing and moving forward, so my advice is to just keep going 💖

Is life just trial and error?

I remember being a miniature version of myself in primary school at the age of about 6 or 7 and talking in the playground to a group of friends (and frenemies) about what we would be when we grew up. We were doing it in a boastful way and were trying to out-do each other with the list accomplishments that we would have achieved by the age of 20. So funny now that I think about it, how much life I thought I’d have lived by age 20. It seemed so far away and at that young age I couldn’t see past the next week let alone the next decade.

What I find strange about adults is that when you’re quite young, many of them allow you to believe in what you want in your future. They tell you that you can be anything that you want to be “when you grow up”, they celebrate the little wins with you and presume you must be a genius when your brain starts getting things right. But somehow, and I don’t know exactly when, but it flips on it’s head a little bit. Very quickly throughout teenage years, your own self-doubt is validated by adults who agree with you and say that maybe those dreams are a little too ambitious after all. We look up to adults, which means that we value their opinion, and assume they must be right! The truth is, sometimes they are, and sometimes they’re not.

Now that we’re adults, can we honestly say that everything we’ve said in our adult life has been the absolute truth and we’re 100% certain that we’re always right??? 👀 nope……. So bless these poor children of the world who rely on us!!

Don’t worry, you don’t need to start freaking out about everything you’ve ever said – you just need to be aware that literally nobody knows what they’re doing in life. When I realised this, I felt so much better!! Honestly, everyone is just giving it a go and hoping for the best. Think about it, how many times have you been at work and not known how to deal with something? You probably made an “educated guess” and it worked out. Or it didn’t work out. But whichever it was determined how you dealt with that same situation when you faced it again. This is life, it always has been and it always will be. Trial and error. Unfortunately too many of us are so scared to make an “error” that we don’t ever “trial”

What I’ve noticed is that the people who get the furthest in life are the people who make mistake after mistake after mistake! And every time they fall flat on their face, or have people say that they’ll never be successful, or push through even when they don’t want to, they develop the strength that they need to get them closer to their end goal.

Are you allowing yourself to make mistakes and accept challenges? If you’re not, take the time to really think about what it is that you want, you are more than capable of achieving it. Just start making mistakes 😊

Lots of love

Sherilyn

Connecting the dots

I’m not sure about you, but I honestly didn’t know my reasons for wanting to travel at first – I just knew that I had an urge to see the world and discover something I’d never found in my everyday life!

Life is so weird, because when you’re in the thick of it, the dots don’t always connect and it’s only when you step away that you can see the real reasons for decisions that you’d made. Rewind a few years to my life before my travelling adventure, on the outside I may have appeared ok, but inside I was crumbling. Life, it seemed, had dealt me some pretty crappy cards and I was doing my best to keep my head above water. I didn’t feel as though I was progressing in life, I had zero self confidence, I let guys treat me terribly because it was the only way I could get their attention, money was constantly slipping through my fingers, I stayed in my room for days at a time eating nothing but crackers and I was on anti-depressants. The odd thing about this is that I kept it a secret – only the people I lived with at the time knew the extent of what I was going through. I was embarrassed, so I hid my struggles from the world.

Soon after that I made some changes in my life and realised that the easiest way to get through this was to keep it moving. I wanted to get as far away from this situation as possible, so when me and my best friend got into a conversation about travelling Australia, there was no question!

At the time, I didn’t know the difference that trip would make to my life, but over a year of experiencing my highest highs and my lowest lows I learned a lot about myself. I’m sure you’ve heard the phrase that things get worse before they get better – well, it’s true. Delving into my past memories wasn’t particularly the most joyous thing I’ve ever done, but it forced me to become mentally tough. My mindset transformed from “flight mode” to “fight mode”💪🏽

I’ve always known deep down that my purpose is to encourage people to truly love themselves, and inspire them to believe in their capabilities. But I realise now that’s impossible if you don’t love or believe in yourself first.

I can now honestly say that I truly love myself and believe that I can achieve anything I set my mind to. I’m not an alien – this does wobble at times, but overall I’m internally a completely different person to who I was a few years ago. I now pride myself in helping others to have their own experiences getting to know themselves and achieving things they may never have thought possible. Always remember that things aren’t always as they seem, so don’t ever compare your reality to how you perceive another persons reality.

Fighting an internal battle is the most destructive of all, but I know that you can win! I’ve been there and all of the most powerful people in the world have. It’s really your weaknesses that are your strengths! Take massive action right now to start transforming yourself from a metaphorical caterpillar into the butterfly you were born to be 🦋

~ Sherilyn ~

The 7 life lessons I learned from travelling

“What does travelling have to do with the ‘real world’ anyway?”

More than you could ever imagine!

I recently wrote 7 individual blogs posts that all intertwine in one large blog. After some great feedback I thought I’d put it all in one place…….

Travel Tip #1

✨The struggles of the journey become insignificant when you reach your destination✨

Very often, we get tired with the journey on the way to our destination and forget that if we stay the path, it will be worth it. I’ve been there plenty of times, and I’m sure at some point you’ve been there too – literally and metaphorically! I can assure you that I’m no skilled mountain climber (not even close) but on a trip to Japan with my best friend, we decided to climb Mount Fuji. It’s not a climb that requires training, but it isn’t exactly easy, particularly if you’d spent the previous few months indulging in life and eating your way around the planet (Guilty!)

So on the climb, my boots pinched my feet, it grew colder the higher we climbed, my thighs we in agony, the mountain was uneven and rocks would wobble and roll away, which made it extremely difficult to stay balanced. We stayed in a mountain hut overnight, and left out again at midnight to complete the climb – pitch black! We reached the next base and I realised that I’d left my phone in the hut, so clambered back down, in the dark towards oncoming crowds of people. I then got my phone, and climbed back up, with much less enthusiasm than I had started with, and looking ahead at the queue to get to the top I began to question whether it was going to be what I had hoped it would be. Isn’t it funny how we do that? We had already climbed so high, so I couldn’t understand how by climbing a little further it would make that much difference, but of course I had no intention of turning back, so on we trotted.

Two things happened as I made the final uphill step onto the mountain; the first was the sheer joy that we’d completed the climb, and still made it in time for sunset even with the phone dramas. The second thing was instant euphoria and emotion that rushed through every pore in my body! It was an incredible feeling, that caused my eyes to water and my heart to pound. The view was breathtaking! We were above the clouds, and the colour of the sky was vibrant and changing before my eyes. Usually you need to look up at the sky, by here I was looking straight ahead; I was IN the sky!

In life, we have unlimited moments like this. We can’t see if our journey is worth it until we reach the top. Had we given up whilst scrambling across the rocks, we would have saved our legs the pain, but missed out on something indescribable, and wouldn’t have had any idea on what we’d missed out on. How many opportunities have we missed because we found the first steps uncomfortable and difficult? There’s a mountain with your name on it, start climbing!

Travel Lesson #2

✨Be prepared to meet some of the best people in your life✨

This may actually come as a bit of a shock to many people, it did to me when I first figured it out. The thing is, sometimes our friendship circles don’t necessarily serve us as we grow and develop into the person we were supposed to be. Usually, as a child, teenager and young adult, our friendships develop from our geographical location or educational background. We’re friends with our neighbours, the friends we sat next to at school, the group of people at youth club, and these friends connect with our soul through commonality – we understand each other’s background, our upbringings are relatable and that will never change. It may be one of the strongest forms of friendships that exist. I honestly believed that this was the only type of friendship that I needed in my life; I was perfectly happy with friends and never felt the need to expand my circle.

Then I went travelling.

And at first, this mindset continued. But before long, staying in hostels, and sitting on long bus rides, you have no choice but to get forced into and around new people in such a close and invasive manner, that it isn’t long before you realise that friendship isn’t just the people that you share history with, it’s the people that share the same vision and future as you. I grew up in a council estate and moved around quite a bit, many of my friends had a similar upbringing. All of a sudden I was sharing my space and the same dreams as people who’s educational backgrounds couldn’t have been further from mine, and who lived in places in the uk and around the world that I’d never be able to place on a map. But that wasn’t important, what was important was that I experienced FAFS (friendship at first sight 😜) multiple times on a level so powerful that it frightened me that I may never have crossed paths with these friends had I not travelled.

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believe that everybody who steps into your life is either a lesson or a blessing – and I was fortunate enough to experience so many blessings from the people I met. (Don’t get me wrong, I had my fair share of lessons too!) But the experience taught me that what we think is our circle, our life or our future is just our perception because we don’t know any different. It’s so much bigger than we could ever imagine if we just take the time to speak to and connect with people who maybe we wouldn’t think to usually.

We’re social creatures and need all kinds of relationships to thrive, so never limit yourself to what you’ve always known 😊 Get out there and find those missing peas to your pod!

Travel Lesson #3

✨It’s ridiculously easy to take things for granted✨

As much as we try our best to be grateful, I hate to say it, but we are really awful at maintaining that gratitude. We want something so bad, for so long, and when we finally get it, the value of it in our head diminishes. This happens ALL THE TIME! And the scary thing is that it happens so subtly that most of us don’t even notice! We feel as though we’ve just arrived at a place of ungratefulness, and once we’re there, it can be tricky to get it back.

This happened to me while I was in New Zealand on an extreme scale. And I had absolutely no idea until afterwards! I’m not sure if you’ve ever been to New Zealand, but the only way I can describe it is like the movie Avatar (maybe a slight exaggeration) but very close to a fantasy world. Particularly the South Island 😍 Plush greenery and turquoise lakes that look so incredible that your brain just can’t understand the beauty of what you’re looking at. Brightly coloured sunsets that showcased almost every colour of the rainbow and thousands of stars in the sky at night, caves inhabited by glow worms looked like the entire underground caves are decorated with fairy lights. Landscapes of rolling hills as far as your eyes can see, snow-capped mountains surrounded by glaciers, cliffs and mountains with waterfalls bursting through them. I now can completely relate to those cartoons where the character rubs their eyes with their fists and lean a little closer just to see if it’s real. New Zealand is just on another level!

When I arrived, I was constantly so overwhelmed with happiness and disbelief, that I would look out of the window of the bus for hours and hours on end as we travelled across the entire country. I never wanted to stop seeing what I was seeing, I even found it difficult to sleep because I didn’t want to miss anything! I literally felt like I was constantly on the verge of happy tears. Basically, an absolute hot mess – in a good way.

I don’t know when I stopped noticing the views, it happened so gradually that it wasn’t even detectable. I just know that over time the bus became more and more uncomfortable, the stop-off photo opportunities became more inconvenient, the cold breeze began to irritate me and I craved hostel bars more than I craved scenic walks through rainforests and jumping into waterfalls. Somehow I’d forgotten to be grateful, and the beauty that surrounded me became my “new-normal”.

This happens in all aspects of our lives; our new shiny career may seem too good to be true to start off with but soon we can’t stand the long days and increasing pressure of targets, we meet a guy and an explosive romance can soon dwindle into a pathetic flickering candle, we move into our dream house but then then the reality of paying the bills and fixing it up soon brush the novelty of our achievement away.

Thankfully, the beauty of NZ was so “in your face” that it demanded me to be grateful and I couldn’t ignore it if I tried. But just think if I had become ungrateful, it would be a metaphor for how many of us go through life. Ignoring all of the things that made us fall head over heels in the first place.

I learned that if I started my day with gratitude and ended it the same, I could never forget to be grateful.

Travel lesson #4

✨You might just discover a bad-ass braver version of yourself✨

I’m always that person in the group who insists on holding the bags while everybody else is getting strapped into a rollercoaster and getting catapulted around a shuddering steel track. I didn’t admit it for ages because I wanted to seem like I could handle anything, but the truth is, I really just don’t like rollercoasters! I can’t handle the anxiety that builds whilst in the queue and I can’t say I’m exactly a fan of plummeting towards the ground at speed, and let’s not even go there with that feeling in your stomach!

No thank you!

Anyway, because I don’t like them, I’ve always found it so bizarre that there’s an entire theme park industry full of rides that are specifically designed to scare the living s*#% out of you. How is this FUN!?!! What is wrong with people?

I’m sure you’ve guessed it, but I’m not afraid to admit that I’m a rollercoaster wimp! And I eventually came to terms with that, as did did everybody else. So naturally I became the “bag lady,” and discovered a new-found passion for scoffing donuts down my throat whilst my friends got twirled around in the sky like spinning-tops. (Best hobby ever by the way.)

I liked it in this happy medium of my safety zone. Occasionally I’d get on a ride, which always shocked the living daylights out of everybody – myself included! I even cried on Disney’s Tower of Terror ride in Orlando three years ago! 🙈

Moving on…….I’ve spoken to a few people about this, so I know it’s not just me, but once you touch down in a new environment, it seems that a braver version of yourself appears! It’s almost like your level of courage raises to be in alignment with where you’ve always wanted it to be. This is where you can do the things that you usually wouldn’t dream of doing – and on top of that, you’re surrounded by other people who are experiencing the same thing, so they help validate it!

We convince ourself that this is a once in a lifetime experience, we’ll never get this opportunity again and we sign up for something crazy! It could be jumping into a waterfall, bungee jumping, diving with sharks – anything! For me, it was skydiving with my best friend. She experienced this enhanced level of courage I’m talking about, and it rubbed off on me, and before I knew it, I was booking tickets. It was ridiculously out of character!

The experience itself is something I’d never repeat (it can be one of those once in a lifetime things👀) however, the things I told myself to convince my brain that it was a good idea have been repeated over and over again ever since. So let’s think about this, if we can muster up the mental strength to convince ourselves it’s a good idea to jump out of a plane with 90 seconds of free falling before any sign of a parachute, do you think that we could maybe tell ourselves it’s a good idea to wake up a bit earlier and go for a run? And if you can keep it together when the hatch opens on a moving plane and your instructor tells you to literally step off into the sky, do you think that maybe you can put together a PowerPoint presentation and speak in front of a room of people?

I thought so!

So here’s what I’ve done, I’ve borrowed that artificial courage when I’ve been faced with something that terrifies me. I speak my brain’s language, and remind it that I’m in no physical danger and if I can put my body through a skydive, I sure as hell can make it through a spinning class, or do a live video, or smash it in an audition, or even go on a date! (The scariest of them all 😜)!

The bottom line is that we are all so much more courageous than we could ever imagine. It sometimes takes these extreme situations to test what we’re capable of!

Ask yourself, if you could always be the bravest version of yourself, who would you be?

Travel Lesson #5

✨You don’t need a lot to be truly happy✨

We live in a world that evolves so quickly that the planet, quite literally, can’t keep up. I can’t even imagine how advanced we’ll be by the time we get a few generations down the line. It always poses the question “how did we used to cope without all this stuff?” The stuff that we use everyday, the device that you’re holding as you read this blog, all of it seems so necessary.

When we think about what we’d like to achieve in life, I’d be surprised if it didn’t include some materialistic items; In the world we call home, material goods are how we measure wealth, security and stability. It’s the modern-day currency. But I’m sure we’d all agree that it’s not enough. However, do we really know what we need to be happy?

I know myself very well – I’m the most social of butterflies and I’m happiest when I’m around people, laughing, connecting, sharing stories, getting to know people and more laughing. I thought I did plenty of this at home, and I do! But our everyday life is overflowing with distractions and that’s how we live, so that’s all we really know. We’ve adapted and evolved to this lifestyle of juggling a million different things and spending our time trying to find ‘balance’ but never achieving it.

Rewind to 2015 when I found myself smack-bang in the middle of one of Queensland’s largest farm regions, my city lifestyle seemed to be a distant memory, and very quickly I replaced my Melbourne-chic wardrobe for Wellington boots and oversized t-shirts. This was not a transition I took lightly 👀

There are endless things I could tell you about my 4 month break from “reality”, but one of the most precious of all is experiencing life with no (or very few) distractions. This left space to share incredible moments with people that in the real world we may have been too busy to have. We were pulled into a community that was held together primarily by relationships – not technology.

It made me notice and appreciate the little things, I mean super tiny things! We made whole events of cutting up old clothes, cooking as a whole group of 20 people, playing word association games for hours on end, talking about the most random of thoughts and still finding common connections. It’s like deep down, when you strip back all the layers, we all think exactly the same things!

Everybody had a part to play within our community and when any one person left, it was a ceremonious event. It taught me not to take relationships for granted, and reminded me that we all need people around us to grow and thrive in our lives.

We don’t need a lot in life to be truly happy, so try not to concentrate on all the “stuff”. The most important things in life, will always be based on our relationships with other people.

Travel Lesson #6

✨You can tolerate more than you even know✨

In life, we will be tested. This is inevitable in all areas of our life. But whilst travelling, I experienced tests that made me truly question whether or not it was worth it, and they started from day one!

I like my sleep, and I like being comfortable – and without these two things being checked off my little mental list, I find it extremely difficult to be a nice person. Please tell me I’m not alone in this, I can be super grumpy and snappy if I don’t get what I need!

Usually, I’m all about quality and experience over everything! However, when it comes to travel, I seemed to flip that on its head. I always preferred quantity over quality so I could have as many adventures as possible in my lifetime and not need to save for 25 years in between! So when I was searching through the internet at all hours of the night to find the cheapest flights, accommodation and transport it didn’t occur to me that maybe a 18 hour bus ride through desert-land or a rocky overnight boat ride with no working toilets would irritate me. When booking these things, I thought my future-self wouldn’t care about the inconvenience of it and could hold a pee in for 5 hours no problem because I’d just be so grateful that I was on my way to something amazing.

Wrong!

Note to self, we can’t predict the future! That all went out of the window and I was absolutely fuming at my past-self for thinking it was a good idea to book these forms of transport. But then something weird happened after a while of experiencing this. I’d get so fed up with the uncomfortable long journey or so fed up of some backpacking monster who would snore all night long, and I would be teetering on the edge of some sort of dramatic, explosive breakdown. And a little switch would go off in my head and change the direction of my emotion – usually to a state of humour.

I have never laughed so much at unfortunate events as I do now since going travelling. There’s countless moments I can remember it happening, like the time me and my friends slept in the stinkiest room in the world in a budget guest house in Thailand. The smell was so awful that the toilet would gargle in the night and the smell that was released instantly woke us all up. Another “hysterical” moment was chasing a flying cockroach around our flat until it flew straight into my backpack and was never found again even when we carefully emptied the contents (whilst screaming). And I can’t forget the time I was on a mountain bike in Bolivia on a tour and came face to face with a landslide, we had to carry our bikes down a partial cliff. Instantly my “nervous-laughter” kicked in and now whenever I think of it, I find it difficult not to smile (or burst out laughing in public 🤦🏽‍♀️).

The truth is, we can tolerate so much more than we even know! And yes, whilst situations that we find ourselves in may not be the best, you have to remember that pain and discomfort is temporary. This applies at the gym, with a difficult customer, when you’re having a bad day, when you’re stuck in traffic. Eventually it will be over. So what can you do? Not much, but try to make a mental note that this is one of those painful moments that just happens, brace yourself and try to see the funny side. Laughter will save you from a lot of pain.

Travel Lesson #7

✨You’ll miss the things that you wanted to get away from✨

British weather is so ridiculous that it’s an ongoing, worldwide joke. It’s all in good humour, and we take it on the chin, but sometimes it just isn’t funny 😫 One of the main reasons a lot of us book holidays is to escape our drizzly, grey weather and find the sun – (we know it’s out there somewhere). So we go in search of somewhere as close to the equator as we can and bask ourselves in those gorgeous rays of sunshine (smothered in spf30 of course!) That was what I wanted anyway, sunshine, blue sea, sand between my toes, eating al fresco without the worry of torrential rain wiping me out, being able to leave the house in the evenings without a jacket, waking up to sunshine, long evenings with bright sunsets – the lot!!

So off I go on this adventure, and it was incredible. Not being tied down to a “job for life”, travelling here there and everywhere on a whim, no plan, just living in the moment. And the weather! I can’t express in words how great it is to see long, summery days and live everyday like it‘s an adventure. I have a sneaky feeling that’s actually how we’re supposed live.

Being in a routine is a bit like a never ending treadmill, and occasionally we need to shake it up a bit. It doesn’t have to be any drastic, but any change in routine will make a huge difference.

I regularly asked myself, if it was possible to live this life of adventure while I was out of my home country, why couldn’t I do it whilst I was back home? That really got me thinking. Especially when Christmas came around and I spent it on a beach with a huge group of new friends, turquoise waves crashing into the sand a few metres away, we even built a sandman to help us get in the spirit. As much as I loved and appreciated this experience, there were no comfy Christmas socks or pigs in blankets in sight; no big festive build up, no Christmas songs or wintery surroundings that made you crave a hot chocolate with whipped cream! It was kind of just like every other day of my adventure. I never thought in a million years that I would miss our terrible weather, but on that day I did. I missed a lot of things. And it reminded me that sometimes you need to take things away and change your routine to help you remember how much you loved what you already had.

It’s helped me understand that you don’t need to be abroad to live a life of adventure. We all create our own adventure, but somehow when we find ourselves in a routine, we forget that we’re the ones in control and it feels like life is dragging you along.

Get back behind the steering while of your life, put your seatbelt on, pick your lane and enjoythe ride.

Why does it feel good to make a difference?

The world is such a big and beautiful place, sometimes I get all weird and can’t believe that I actually live on the planet, in the universe surrounded by all these other planets. Do you ever think about that? I catch myself sometimes and have to stop before I question my entire existence. As much as the world is beautiful, it’s inevitably full of tragedy and dark events that really overpower a lot of the incredible things the world has to offer. Because of that, there are so many extremes in our day to day lives that we now seem to have become accustom to. It’s unfortunate that the negativity, global attacks and culture wars are no longer a shock or surprise to us yas they are announced. It’s almost like the whole world are holding their breath, waiting for the next report.

So really, in a world like this, how do we as individuals really make a difference? How do we put a stop to the negativity and expand the positivity? The black eyed peas song “where is the love?” has been on replay in my head for longer than I can even remember. When that song was released, I never could have predicted how ‘the love’ that they refer to could diminish further than it had at that time.

The purpose of me writing this is not to insult you and attempt to educate you on what’s wrong with our world, nor to tell you how to fix it. I’m here to express my personal feelings on hope. We all know that when hope is lost, all is lost. That’s just the way it goes. Fortunately, I see a lot of hope, every single day. And it comes in all different forms. Much of it is unrelated to the worldwide trauma, which in itself is a blessing. There’s hope of better futures, there’s so many people coming together to raise awareness of incredible causes, there are people pushing themselves to their physical limits to inspire others to take action. Everybody is realising that they have a voice and something to contribute, and at this stage any small difference is worlds better then the latter.

It fills me with happiness to see all of the JustGiving stories and positive challenges people put themselves forward for. This current day and age is all about contribution, if you’re not thinking about what you can do to add a little positivity and hope to the world, you’re missing a trick! Not only have my little contributions made a difference to the causes I’ve been fortunate enough to work alongside, but the sense of fulfilment it gives is a feeling like no other. I’m sure a lot of you will agree. Yes, it feels unbelievable to challenge yourself and a group of friends to do something you might otherwise “give a miss” – but the real excitement comes from the build up and at the end when you’re totalling up what you’ve raised. This amount, of course, is a drop in the ocean compared to what’s needed. But that’s what making a difference is all about, lots of people doing a little bit each.

If you’re sitting on the fence about what exactly to put yourself forward for, I’d recommend combining it with something you’ve always wanted to do, but (deep down) don’t quite believe you’ve got the willpower. I’ll tell you one thing, knowing that by completing what you set out to do will have a incredible impact on who you’re raising money for is enough to make you put one foot in front of the other in the moments want to give up.

I’ve been lucky enough to do a few things that I may never had done had a cause not been involved. The most challenging by far was cycling from Leicester to Paris in 4 days – with very minimal training. A word of advice? Train your butt off before you attempt this! I was in agony in more places than one for way longer than I thought possible for what felt like months after. I literally could not look at another bicycle (and I’m still pretty terrified of spinning classes). Actually, now that I think about it, I’m pretty sure I’ve only got onto an actual bicycle 3 times since the bike ride – and that was 3 years ago! Each of those four days was a struggle beyond belief. But something weird happened quite early into the ride, that developed over the next 4 days.

You might have experienced this feeling when you’ve faced your own challenges, and in this situation it happened to me on about the 4th hour of cycling. Prior to this, I had never before been on a bike in the rolling hills of England for four hours. Ever! My thighs were burning, my shins were in agony, my hands were cramping from grabbing onto the handlebars for dear life, my bum – let’s not even go there. It was just hideous! But I realised in that moment, that I’d gone further than I’d ever gone in my life, and there was absolutely no way that I was about to turn around and cycle my sore bottom back to Leicester. There were three reasons for this; a) I had made a commitment to my friend and her chosen charity, so I was not about to give up so easily, b) if I could cycle this far, surely I could push myself to keep going, c) I didn’t know the way home!

The moment I realised this, something shifted in my mind. The only thing I can compare it to is Iron Man putting his suit on and preparing for battle, it was game on! I could see the end result in my head, and I was going to get there (albeit internally kicking and screaming). Although this is a extreme version of the “battle suit” – I have used this mentality so many times since then to help me through difficult situations and didn’t even know it. My mentor refers to it as “rhino skin”. For example, if someone gets a toothpick and jabs it into your forearm, that is going to hurt! Instant pain and it may even draw blood and leave a scar. If you instead you poked the toothpick at a thicker part of your skin, like the bottom of your heel (you all know what I’m talking about!!) It’s going to hurt significantly less. If you used that same toothpick and prodded it into the skin of a rhino, it wouldn’t hurt a bit, in fact, the toothpick would splinter and snap. This is the mental “skin” that we develop when it gets to fight or flight mode. Yes, of course it can be used for extreme physical activity, but this can also be used and channeled in a way that helps us get past those mental blocks that we sometimes cause for ourselves.

I guess my point is that putting yourself in a position that feels uncomfortable is much easier if you know that as a result somebody else will get rewarded. It’s easy for us to give up on our dreams and convince ourselves that it wasn’t important to us any anyway. Let me tell you, it’s much more difficult to let somebody down who needs you. I believe that these acts of contribution work both ways, it’s an extremely positive act to the person or organisation on the receiving end, yet the to the person contributing, it’s a feeling that lasts a lifetime.

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Step out of your comfort zone

Imagine a life with no limits

I’ve been doing lots of thinking about this topic lately. The dictionary definition of limit is this; noun – “the final, utmost, or furthest boundary or point.” I’m sure we can all agree, that this description in itself is quite depressing, as to say that something is the final or furthest point is to imply that it’s impossible to go any further. 

The truth of the matter is that we naturally believe that everything has a limit, even though we are continually proved wrong. History has countless evidence of our miscalculations, but humans are prone to sticking to our close-minded beliefs until somebody actually stretches those limits and validates in true Mean Girls fashion that “The limit does not exist”


Just going to throw it back to my childhood for a minute. I was totally obsessed with the Guinness World Record Book, and used to awe over the unbelievable things that humans were capable of! I thought there was absolutely no way that anybody else would ever be able to match those records! The truth is, every time a new issue got printed, the old records would get exceeded every year. Once the limit was found, they continued to get pushed. 

One of my favourite quotes is “Just because something hasn’t been done before, doesn’t mean it cannot be done” The reason I love it so much is because it reminds me that everything that has ever been achieved, once hadn’t. Just take a moment to think about that, somebody has to achieve it first! Things don’t just happen, trust me, some serious work went into everything that was once “impossible” It’s easy to forget that and get caught up in your own mind-blocks. The best way to get out of this state, is to first understand why you’re doing it, and take the time to train your mind back into the right place. 


When we limit ourselves or procrastinate over things that are important to us, there’s usually a reason for it, but you usually have to peel back a few layers to figure it out. Everybody’s reasons for this self-sabotaging behaviour are different, but they’re normally connected to something from this list; 

– Fear of failure 

– Fear of success 

– Guilt 

– Self doubt 

There will most likely be a few others in the mix too, but when I coach people within my team, I find that these are the most common ones that pop up. And I don’t care what anyone says, these behaviours have at some point had an affect on our lives – maybe it’s even happening to you now! 

– Fear of failure; this is probably number one on most people’s lists – subconsciously. Nobody wants to put themselves out there and go against the grain, sticking out like a sore thumb, making countless sacrifices, to then end up back where they started. How embarrassing right? 

– Fear of success; this is the one that actually surprises most people, and it’s not fear of success itself, but fear of what comes along with it. People worry that they’ll change, they’ll lose friends, they won’t be able to handle the money or attention, people will dislike them and publicly drag their skeletons out of the closet, probably even constantly ask for handouts. Most people just think it’s much easier not to deal with all that stress, and subconsciously stop striving for their goals. 

– Guilt; usually to get to the top of your respective career, you’ll have to make some pretty difficult sacrifices. It might mean not seeing your friends as often as you’d like. Not having time to attend birthday parties and big events, missing out on quality time with family. You might feel guilty for being offered incredible opportunities or having a healthy bank account whilst other people in your life may be struggling. 

– Self-doubt; Many people just don’t believe that they’re made for it. They don’t believe in themselves or they use their past struggles to determine their future success. We also have the ability to talk ourselves out of anything, and any negativity or rejection can cause us to give up on our goals, because subconsciously we’re already looking for ways to prove that it wasn’t suited to us anyway. 

I’m not saying that this is everybody’s reasons for not being where they might want to be, but one or many of these points may have crossed your mind at some point when thinking about your ideal life with no limits. 

The bottom line is that nobody puts a cap on our capabilities other than ourselves. We have an incredible unlimited potential and unfortunately not enough of us reach it. The best way to work towards your goals is to work on knocking down these limitation-walls. Figure out what it is that scares you and why. And just so you know, none of the above points play out how they do in your head. We may be advanced beings, but predicting the future isn’t always our strong point…… 


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What is the deal with everybody suddenly going travelling? 

This may be a question that has popped into your head a few times over the more recent years. It feels like everybody is quitting their jobs, throwing a backpack on and embarking on a long international adventure. You could be one of the people who made that decision and are currently exploring somewhere that you’d only ever imagined, or you could be scrolling through your news feed (which now looks like a Lonely Planet brochure) wondering what the heck all the fuss is about! Either way, I’ll enlighten you the best that I can, I was and am both of those people, which I know sounds odd, but the Travel Cycle is something that never really ends when you jump on it. 

Pictures just don’t do our planet justice

So rewind about 7 years, my friend calls me up and says “Hey, I’m heading back out to Thailand to visit the family I stayed with when I volunteered in the school over there. I want to travel around a bit while I’m there too, would be great if you came with me.” I said something about there being no way I could afford to go to Thailand and quickly ended the call. Yes, I had travelled a lot by this point; as a dancer I’d been fortunate enough to work abroad in theme parks, holiday resorts and cruise ships around the world. But aside from work, my travelling had only really consisted of westernised places or alcohol-induced trips to Zante and Mallorca! Thailand was just out of the question! Right? The problem was, that I am such a “yes” person, that I couldn’t shake this idea of actually going!! Really, what was stopping me?! 


It wasn’t long before I imagined myself donning an oversized backpack and drinking snake blood like Leonardo Di Caprio in The Beach. I returned my friends call and we booked flights. That trip completely changed my life! We did Thailand on the teeniest budget ever. We caught overnight buses, slept in cockroach-invested huts, caught the worst case of Thai-Tummy known to mankind, got stranded in the middle of nowhere with empty bank accounts…….but WOW was it an incredible trip!! 

The face you make when you’re about to embark on your travels

There’s something about travelling that’s very different to going on holiday or doing a season abroad. It forces you out of any form of comfort zone and somehow changes you. If I come across someone who’s travelled, we tend to share a knowing look with each other, (I may be imagining this) but it’s almost like we acknowledge that each of us has been through some kind of deep inner journey and fast-tracked the development of our open mind. Over the years, I’ve been lucky enough to explore South America, Australia, Japan, New Zealand, and in each of these places that are sprinkled across the planet, it has become apparent that almost everyone I’ve come across is looking for the same thing – I know this is as cheesy as anything, but I believe they were looking for themselves. (If you ignore the cheese for just a second) what I’m trying to say is that they want the freedom, space and opportunity to get to know themselves on a deeper level than may be possible with all the distractions that we have in our day-to-day lives at home. Travelling is one of the few things that allows you to do that so intensely. 

Well this was a different kind of December

We have been brought up in a generation where travelling is part of the norm, it’s accessible to everyone, it’s affordable if you look in the right places, you can book an entire years trip before you’ve even had a chance to think about it. The go-to therapy for breakups, redundancies, and the “what am I doing with my life?” phase. Forget Prince Charming and knights in shining armour; in modern day fairytales all Cinderella needs is a plane ticket!! 


I can’t speak for everybody, only myself and many of the people I met whilst travelling, but it really has shaped my life for the better. And I know that my future will be completely different now than it would have been if I hadn’t travelled. For me, it was more important to travel to as many places as I could on a budget than to go to one luxury place, so I learned to understand the term “roughing it” – and although at times it was difficult, hot, sweaty and uncompromising; I started to learn how to be patient and create fun and laughter in the most dire of conditions. Believe me, if you don’t, you’d go stir crazy! So my creativity and tolerance definitely improved!! Gratitude began to show an appearance in my life, which was like hitting a gold mine!! I had always secretly been a glass-half-empty kind of person, which is awful to admit (no one wants to be that girl) but wow, living in the middle of nowhere where everything is trying to kill you helps you to understand gratitude on a different level. 

When personal space goes out the window


The main problem I face now, is how do I stop?! I don’t believe the travel bug ever dies, so really the only option I have is to feed it. Where to next???? 

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Confessions of a single girl on Valentines Day

This is one of my favourite topics ever!! Every year this day rolls around that celebrates love ❤️ All kinds of love!! Parents, friends, siblings, cousins, distant relatives, children; but the one type of love that tends to dominate your news feed, the media, the card shops, the adverts is spouse-love. It’s almostttt like the other types of love get pushed to the side and are inferior when it comes to good old V Day. I know what you’re thinking, what about the rest of us? The other half of the population who are yet to find the love of our life?! But fear not my friends, we all have plenty to celebrate; let me break it down.

First of all, I’m going to be very open with you. I don’t think many people know this about me, as it’s not exactly something I shout from the rooftops, but this year 2017, marks 10 years of life as a single woman. I know a few eyebrows may have raised and questions rush to the front of your mouth, ready to ask that one familiar question, “Why?” And I’m not quite sure of the answer, if I knew, I’d tell you. But I guess it’s a combination of things which makes it hard to put my finger on. Don’t get me wrong I have dated plenty in the past 10 years, but I am yet to meet somebody to call my boyfriend, and I am still yet to understand what it feels like to fall in love. What I do find slightly amusing is people’s “upfront-ness” when it comes to questioning me about my life as a singleton. Without meaning to, they tend to get into interrogation mode. If anybody has had this experience, attempting to explain why you’re single is a really uncomfortable thing to do. Let’s flip it around a second, I’m sure that if I asked somebody why they have continuously gone from failed relationship to failed relationship, it would not go down well!

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Over the years, I have gone through so many phases and emotions in relation to my love life (or lack of) and I can honestly finally say, hand on heart, that I am 100% fulfilled as a single woman. Isn’t that bizarre, it only took 10 years! 😂

Here’s a mini break down of how the past 10 years went!

Years 1-2 – FREEDOM!!! Not ready for a relationship, I want to travel the world and live a spontaneous and fun life!!

Years 3-4 – Ok great! I’m settled a bit now, moving to London and back in the dating pool.

Years 4-5 – Getting irritated now, my heart is on my sleeve, met multiple “The One’s” but they keep disappearing and finding the loves of THEIR lives! Am I Cupid?!

Years 5-6 – I am SO ready to settle down!! My dreams no longer matter, if I meet him I’ll drop everything!!! Cannot stand looking at couples, where art thou Romeo?!

Year 7 – Love life rock-bottom!! Downward spiral. Surrounded by couples, engagements and romantic gestures. Really though, what if I never experience falling in love?

Years 8-9 – Hold on a minute?!!! This is so not me!! Shezza get your S&@£ together!! Dreams back on track, confidence grown, new plans for new adventures! Explore this beautiful planet. Fell head over heels in love – with myself!!

Year 10 – Wow wow wow!!! The happiest I’ve ever been. My goal is to inspire and motivate the world!! Teach others to love themselves the way that we each deserve. Challenge myself everyday. Put myself first.
What a crazy little timeline. I’m not sure if you have been through similar internal battles, but hopefully seeing mine makes you realise that this is part of life; and going through tough times will (I promise) ultimately make you stronger. If I’d have met somebody before now, particularly in years 5-6, my life would be nowhere near where it is today!! Can you imagine!?! The most epic things I have done in my life to date have occurred in the past few years, and my old-self was willing to sacrifice all that for somebody that I clearly wasn’t ready for!! Eh? Humans are so ridiculous sometimes (or maybe just me) we think we know what we want, but have no friggin idea! Eternally grateful for the universe 🙌🏽
So let’s go back to the date in question, Valentine’s Day! I saw lots of passive aggressive posts saying “why should we pick a particular day to show we love each other?!” Well hellooooooo who’d pass up on the chance to get showered with affection and a lovely hand written card from your love?! You may be one of the minority who get flowers and cards everyday from your man, and if that’s the case, don’t ruin it for the rest of them!! Accept your gifts and 🤐!! Technically, if we’re going to get all opinionated on the matter, when it comes to celebrating your birthday, we should apply the same rules. Your life should be celebrated everyday, right?! 😜

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For a single person, there’s an awkward air that surrounds the day. People ask “What are you doing for Valentine’s Day?!” I don’t know what they’re expecting me to say. This year however, I did almost accidentally make plans for the big day!! I recently started dating this guy, he would never read this, so I don’t mind saying. I’m not sure I’m truly invested as I always completely forget to text him back and return his calls!! But we said we’d “Get some food in the week”. The only day we both could do was Tuesday, and me not realising the date was THE date, said yes. Then it clicked, and I couldn’t do it. I had to reschedule!! I could visualise the awkwardness in HD, and it wasn’t happening.

Overall the day is as we know, just another day. But a great opportunity to share the love, and scroll through my news feed collecting mental notes of the extravagant gifts I shall be expecting from my boy in future. Kidding!!! (I go on Pinterest for that!) I hope that all of you, whether in a relationship, single or “it’s complicated” had a great day!

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Love Sherilyn xx

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