Anxious About Life After Lockdown

Lockdown is easing in the UK and things are slowly going back to normal…well the “new normal”. People are outside in the sun, on beaches, having picnics in the park with their friends and family. Some are social distancing and some are not. Of course, it’s normal to feel angry at those who aren’t following the rules and I’ve had a lot of those angry feelings during these past four months.

All over my social media, I see people enjoying their time outside, not a care in the world. I think to myself, how are people doing it? Have they forgotten that we have been in lockdown for most of this year? How can they just go back to normal?

Mental illness thrives in isolation.

I have been really sticking to the rules of this lockdown. I barely went outside. Four months in lockdown, no work, no social contact other than with my own household – it’s bound to get comfortable. It’s certainly comfortable for my anxiety. Mental illness thrives in isolation.

What is making me upset at the moment is readjusting to life outside of lockdown. I haven’t been on public transport in four months, I haven’t been in an Uber in four months. I haven’t been shopping (something I love to do) for four months and I haven’t even worked for four months. I haven’t even stepped outside of the house by myself, without a household member. My anxiety is all over the place at the moment due to the thought of doing those things again.

It’s easy for some. I know lots of people who haven’t really followed the government guidelines so readjusting to life outside of lockdown is no problem for them.

But for those of us who have stuck to the rules but also have concerns about lockdown being lifted, it’s very tough to suddenly start seeing people again and being social. I’ve been safe at home all this time and now after a long time, we are allowed to do normal stuff again.

I’m scared and worried about the new normal and how we all need to change the way we behave in public.

It’s scary for me. The thought of going outside, by myself, even to the park is making me feel anxious. I’m scared of the virus, I’m scared of a second spike. I hate that it’s something that is out of my control. I’m scared and worried about the new normal and how we all need to change the way we behave in public. Change is terrifying.

So spare of thought for those of us who are struggling with the thought of lockdown being lifted. For those of us who haven’t been working for four months, for those who have lost their jobs and back on the job hunt again – it’s going to take a bit longer for us to get used to all this.

I recognise that I need to do this at my own pace and that’s okay.

Don’t rush your friend who might not be feeling up to going to that BBQ or that family member who might not be ready to go into a different family household. For me, I think I’ll be okay if I start slowly, avoiding big crowds at first such as on public transport. I need to start easing myself in slowly by taking a walk locally. I recognise that I need to do this at my own pace and that’s okay.

Things have dramatically changed for everyone in the world and it has affected some more than others but that’s okay. Listen to them, don’t minimise their feelings and let them do things at their own pace. It’s going to be okay. After all, we are all in this together, right?

How did I get into the BBC?

Many people are interested in how I got to where I am today, career wise, so it is about time I reveal all. Especially because it is now exactly one year that I have been holding down a job at the BBC – so it seems rather relevant to be writing this now (as I have been thinking about writing something on this for months!).

CKeOkiXWoAAyyKQ

I don’t even know where to start to be honest. Many people ask me, how on earth did I manage to get into the BBC so very quickly at a very young age. Fresh out of university at the age of 21 and I get my first ever paid job on BBC Radio 4’s Today programme, which was literally a dream come true – considering the Today programme was one of my dream programme’s to work for.

But, lets rewind back to university. I was an undergraduate at City University London from 2011 – 2014. Being on a media/journalism based course, we were encouraged to take on as many work experience placements in the media as we can. Now, back in 2013, I wrote a piece on ‘Is work experience worth it?’ and ‘How to find work experience placements and internships’ – so do have a read.

Half way through my first year, I luckily got accepted on a month work experience at BBC Radio 4. Since then, I made contacts and shadowed BBC Radio’s 1, 2 and 6 Music. Bearing in mind, my passion back then was radio.

I kept seeking for more work experience. I didn’t mind if it was unpaid – I just wanted to get as much experience as I can so that it can benefit me after I leave university. Month after month, I emailed radio stations and production companies asking for work experience. Long story short, that same year, I did work experience at Absolute Radio, Whistledown Productions for BBC Radio, Channel 4 and LBC. Not just that, I also got involved with the media team at uni. I took part in student radio and also became one of the editors of the university magazine.

During uni, I also had my own radio show at London’s youth station Roundhouse Radio, from the Roundhouse venue itself. The station matched me with a professional mentor to help me with my university to career transition (bearing in mind this was now my final year at uni) and luckily my mentor was from the Today programme – which I was honestly over the moon about. Big shout out to Steven (you know who you are, I wouldn’t be where I am today without his help!!).

Whilst being in the midst of writing my dissertation, I was also preparing for life after university. I was so terrified of being unemployed. I hear a lot of stories about people graduating and then failing to find a job. I was rather lucky to have a mentor, who did help me with my CV and covering letters and also recommended people I should speak to and most importantly reassured me that I have enough experience to get a job and not to worry.

One thing I mustn’t forget is getting my CV professionally done. Trust me, it is so worth it. I have never been so proud of my CV until I got it done by a rather amazing company so I do highly recommend it.

My mentor recommended I speak to someone at the Today programme so I sent my CV and a covering letter in an email. I got a reply back saying to come and have a chat with them and I was offered a two week trial period – which was basically shadowing someone for two weeks and then see where I go from there. I trained and after two weeks, I got myself a two month contract with the Today programme as a Broadcast Assistant, mainly handling Today’s website and social media. Of course, waking up at 4am every morning was incredibly difficult but I really didn’t mind, considering I was being made to wake up to work on a programme that I love.

Screen Shot 2015-09-08 at 20.41.48After the Today programme, I went straight onto work for BBC News Online, for the Digital Video team (which I still do) and became a Broadcast Journalist (my current title). Then lots of other opportunities came up as I approached some of my favourite programmes including The Andrew Marr Show and Daily & Sunday Politics (current programmes I work for). As my background is within online, I look after their website and social media presence.

One of my highlights of working for the BBC is playing a huge role for BBC’s coverage of the 2015 General Election. During the campaign leading up to polling day, I covered a lot for BBC Politics (online) and worked closely with the Daily Politics debates. I was a Results Inputter on results night/day, inputting the results which went straight on-air.

At work, I have met the most amazing people/colleagues. I met rather big people including Prime Minister David Cameron and lots of others. Never thought things like that would happen to me.

This is not a 9-5 job. Some days I am up at 4am for a 6am start. Sometimes I start around 2pm and finish at midnight. Sometimes I am even working overnight. It is not easy and it is not structured, but I honestly wouldn’t change it for the world.

Without knowing the right people and getting as much experience as I could beforehand, I wouldn’t have been able to get those jobs. Contacts is key in this industry. You will get rejected. I was rejected many time before I got into the BBC but I persevered. I never gave up because this was my dream. This is my dream. I am determined to do more, experience more, learn more – so this is the beginning of an amazing journey. 
Screen Shot 2015-09-08 at 20.49.40

Big Brother UK 2014 : My thoughts?

big-brother-eye

I say this every year – whenever summer comes around, I am quite literally hooked to Big Brother and every year, it gets better. 

This year, we have some rather unusual housemates. Actually, every year they seem to put in unusual housemates.

Screen Shot 2014-07-08 at 13.06.50

Tamara, Pauline, Toya and Matthew have been evicted. Out of all of them, I liked Matthew and I don’t think he deserved to go. Tamara was boring, Pauline was a game player and Toya was just too loud and she thought she was the best – so they deserved to go.

I think I will start with my favourites at the moment. I absolutely love Ashleigh. She is the only one who actually stands up to Helen. I loved the week when the girls had the power and Ashleigh basically became the boss. You cannot win with the public – if you don’t do anything, you are boring and hated but if you actually speak your mind, you are still hated. Well, I think Ashleigh is brilliant and I really don’t want her to go on Friday as she is up for eviction.

My next favourite is Chris. I think he is a decent laid-back guy. I also loved him when he had the power and he made all the right decisions and knew exactly what Pauline was doing when all the other housemates where oblivious to it. 

Now, the controversial housemate is of course Helen. I don’t think her pass to the final (given by Pauline on the second day) is well deserved at all. If she didn’t have that pass to the final, she will be long gone. I think she has deep personal issues that she has not dealt with and this is why she is very angry and always looking to start arguments with people. The big argument that she had was with Danielle and Matthew. I thought she said the most horrendous things to them. To be honest, I think she has had her fair share of arguments with each and every housemate now – expect for Ash, who is her best friend in the house.

Everyone is scared of Helen and afraid to stand up to her but Ashleigh is doing that – and apparently, some of the public don’t like that. Everyone else knows that getting into an argument with Helen will end in a nasty way so they always try to avoid it. I don’t know what Big Brother is playing at to be honest because she already received two formal warnings about her bullying in the house and Big Brother said if she does it again, she could be kicked out of the house. However, she has been vile towards a lot more housemates after she has had those warnings and yet Big Brother is not doing anything about it. Having said that, the house will be very dull and boring without Helen so I guess she is making the show rather watchable. 

Onto Kim and Steven now. I don’t know what is going on but I reckon Steven is only going to get hurt because Kim doesn’t really seem to be that interested in him. That could be because she cannot show her emotions rather obviously but she said she is in a relationship outside of the house – so I don’t know what she is doing with Steven. They already talked about moving in together after they get out, having been together for two weeks? Something is not right. I reckon it is more ‘showmance’ than romance with those two – but we’ll see. 

Winston? I don’t know what is his game to be honest. For the first week, he was ‘dating’ Tamara and now that she has been evicted, he is making a move on Danielle – which many of the public and housemates were surprised by. Danielle is very set in her ways and is very sensible but I don’t know – people can surprise you. I do think Danielle is going to feel lost if Ashleigh gets evicted. 

This leaves Jale, Ash, Christopher, Marlon and Mark. I reckon it is time for Marlon to go. His behaviour is quite boring yet annoying at times.

The public love Mark. His strong scouse accent can be very irritating though. I do think he will be in the final.

I think Christopher is quite misunderstood. I think he tries to be very fair and honest as he can be yet he gets accused of things – for example, the Christmas task where he had to choose people who were on the good list and the naughty list. Helen took it very personally as she was picked to be on the naughty list (which resulted in argument last night) and I felt that it was very unfair for Christopher as he did what he had to do but Helen just wanted to pick a fight with him. 

I don’t know what to say about Ash. He doesn’t really do anything except for being Helen’s friend to be honest. I really want him to be evicted just to see what Helen does without him. 

Finally, Jale. She was most hated by the housemates during the first week and I only think this because of Pauline’s influence. Pauline did not like her from the very beginning and her power resulted in Jale being up for eviction every single week. I really like Jale. I think she is the most honest and genuine housemate out of all of them. 

Overall, I am absolutely loving this series. There are a lot of arguments because of Helen but I guess it would be boring without arguments. This series is based on ‘the power’ where one or a couple of housemates get the power to put housemates up for eviction. Along the way, Big Brother has provided some exciting twists, which makes it more interesting. 

Maybe it is too early to say who will win, but judging from the public’s response so far, I reckon Mark or Winston will win. Chris could even do it!  

Winter Essentials (2013)

It is December, which means it is Winter! After Autumn, Winter is my next favourite season because of the thought of being stuck at home, around the fire or heater,  just feeling rather cosy! I love it. I do not like snow though and apparently, Britain will have the worst Winter in 60 years during the next coming months. Snow, snow and more snow. I am not looking forward to that.

But fear not because every year, I have a few essentials (below) that I think we should all have this Winter so that it does not affect our mood as much. I don’t know about you, even though I love Winter, it does bring on a rather melancholic feeling. But, materialistic things does tend to make me happier! y (3)1. Winter Coat – After wearing my mac/trench coat all Autumn, when Winter comes along, I change to a wool coat, which will keep you warm in the harsh weather us Brits face when it comes to December/January. I still go for my usual skater style coat and I have been wearing a wool military style coat from ASOS like the one above for nearly over two years now because it is so good and is not even damaged one bit. I would suggest to invest in a rather expensive Winter coat, which will last you a very long time. Also, when you live in the UK, you always need a coat all year round to be honest. But, I do not change to a proper Winter coat (wool material) until the temperature drops to 5 degrees and below.

2. Gloves – We all need a pair of warm gloves during the Winter. I find that when I am out and the weather is so cold, my hands get so frozen that I cannot even use my phone. The one above is a Hello Kitty one but if you are a smartphone user, I would suggest you buy a pair of touchscreen gloves. Those are a lifesaver!

3. Cosy Slipper Boots – I love walking around the house with a pair of slippers and recently I saw these cosy looking boots in H&M and I had to buy it. They look like Uggs and I do not like Uggs but these are just to wear at home when it is so cold. They are very comfortable and very warm!

4. Hot Water Bottle – I am always always always cold and I always (I need to stop saying always) need a hot water bottle. I have the Hello Kitty one above. I have my own heater as well which I use to death but a hot water bottle is something that I use when I need to fall asleep. I feel so cold that I cannot even sleep so I usually make myself a hot water bottle before bed. Be careful though because from experience, using a hot water everyday is not good for your skin. Too much use can burn your skin!

5. Cosy Pyjamas – I don’t know about you but when I wear new pyjamas, I feel like a million dollars. Very weird I know. I recently bought new Hello Kitty pyjamas and they are the best thing ever. Along with pyjamas, I would suggest a nice cosy dressing gown. I live in dressing gowns and pyjamas to be honest – even in the summer because I am always cold! I am eyeing up a Hello Kitty dressing gown at the moment but if I spend my money on that, I am sure to get into trouble. I have too many already!

6. Cosy Slipper Socks – Like the boots, fluffy slipper socks are great for those colder months. Again, I live in fluffy socks at home because of me being so susceptible to the cold. They are the best.

7. Carmex – When it is really cold, your lips tend to get very dry and chapped and I find that putting on Carmex before my lipsticks prevents my lips from getting like that. Carry one around with you because it does the job!

8. Rimmel Kate Moss Liptick in 107 – This has been my favourite lipstick all Summer and Autumn and because it is such a dark red lipstick, it would definitely work well in the Winter. I love this lipstick as it is matte and just looks amazing on.

9. Estee Lauder Double Wear Foundation (in Ecru) – In my Double Wear Light review, I said that the full coverage one is great for Winter and I have started using it again after months of using Double Wear Light and I must say, I have fallen in love with this foundation again. It is so perfect for Winter because it is such a full coverage foundation. It just works well on my skin in the Winter. So, if you wear foundation – a good full coverage one is what you need for the Winter.

10. MAC Bronzing Powder (Matte Bronze) – When it is Winter, your skin will become rather dull, so if you want to get a bit of colour into your skin, I would suggest using a bronzer. I have been loving contouring recently and this bronzer by MAC does the job perfectly. I do not like shimmers in my bronzers so I bought the matte one. Most of these are rather dark but very blendable.  I would suggest using the Real Techniques Blush Brush to contour really well. Also, because the bronzer is by MAC, it is quite expensive at £20 so if you want a cheaper alternative drugstore one, I would suggest the Sleek Face Contour Kit. I have the one in the Light shade and it is only £6.49 and does the job well!

 

My Perfect Autumn Outfit

y (16)

Autumn is my favourite season, especially because I think Autumn fashion is amazing. Everything you see above is my perfect Autumn outfit and yes, they are all black and black is favourite colour to wear in the colder months. In Autumn, smart is the way to go for me.

A long-sleeve Drop-Waist Dress is a new style of dress I introduced to my wardrobe recently. I love the fit of this kind of dress and for some reason, it feels like something that I should wear in the Autumn. These dresses are quite popular at the moment.

I would pair this dress with a pair of leather look leggings or trousers. I chose leather just to give it more edgier look.

I usually wear a nice shawl over my dresses, so with this outfit, I would wear a nice black shawl over it.

In Autumn, I cannot live without a nice structured Mac or a Trench coat because it is quite light which is perfect for Autumn as it is not that cold; not cold enough for a wool coat anyway.  I recently purchased this Mac above from Miss Selfridge and I absolutely love it. Very flattering and it looks like a dress which is a bonus.

For footwear, I would wear my usual suede Wallabees. I just think it goes well with this outfit.

And finally, because I would usually wear this outfit to university, I would team it with a structured smart satchel, large enough to fit in my work. This one above is the  Office City Bag from Zara, which is not in stock at the moment due to the fact that it is old season now I think. However, they do have a similar one out at the moment but with zips and more larger. You can find it here. I absolutely love structured business/office bags like this.

And there we have it. My idea of a perfect Autumn outfit.

Big Brother 2013 (UK) – My Opinion On The Current Housemates

Image

I LOVE Big Brother and it seems to take up my whole summer every year. I think since it has moved to Channel 5, it has improved tremendously. The housemates that are left are a random bunch and here is what I think of them.

Image

Hazel

She is the most hated housemate at the moment to the public. I think she should be the next housemate to be evicted. Since the whole Daley scenario, she just angers me and I think the Daley situation really did ruin her reputation as a housemate and to the public. She should have been evicted long ago. Why is she still there?

Image

Jack and Joe

 These two are honestly starting to get on my nerves now. I thought they were nice boys at first and to be honest, because they are twins and are rather comedic, they were quite popular with the public but these past few weeks, they just seem too arrogant I suppose, which is not going to help them win the show at all.

Image

Callum

What can I say about Callum? He is SO creepy it is ridiculous. I really do not think he is himself in the house. He is acting rather fake. The “Mr Nice-Guy” act definitely gave away his game plan and because the others have picked up on it, he has totally changed into a different person and has become quite bitchy and evil. He does like Charlie regardless of what he says and he is incredibly jealous of Dexter.

Image

Sam

 There is nothing to be said for Sam. I really do not think he brings anything to the house. He just seems plain boring and frankly he needs to go.

Image

Sophie

She is a lovely person but I am afraid again, she also does not bring anything to the house and I feel like she needs to go.

Image

Dexter

 A very controversial housemate indeed. You cannot deny the fact that Dexter is quite an entertaining housemate and without him, the house will be quite dull. I have no idea if his feelings towards Charlie are genuine but there is a part of me that thinks he is a genuine person. Under that hard shell of his, he is a nice person and I do feel like  he is not taken seriously by the other housemates. But who knows? That could be part of his game plan and his attempt to annoy Callum. I want him to stay in and get to the final.

Image

Charlie

I think she is really secretly enjoying having two guys quite literally falling at her feet but the whole Charlie-Dexter-Callum thing is really getting boring now. That whole situation has made her one of the popular housemates. I actually think she likes Callum but also she has a soft spot for Dexter but to be honest, I really do not think anything will happen with either of them and that so-called love-triangle needs to end once and for all.

Image

Gina

I have saved the best till last. I LOVE love love Gina! She has dramatically changed the public’s perception of her since she went into the safe house with Dexter. She is the only genuine housemate there. I did not like her at first because of what happened on the first night with Sallie but she really has won me over and I love her. Gina to win!