At 34 years of age, with just three months to go before my second child was due to be born, I quit my job without a backup plan. I quit because I was unhappy. Simple as that. Being miserable no longer felt like an inevitable outcome of being a responsible adult: I became convinced there was another way.
The pauses between the conversations. The transitions from one place to another. Scientists tell us that matter is mostly space. In the same way our diaries, even the most intense ones, are actually full of gaps. They may be micro-moments but taken together they add up to huge amounts of empty potential
It's been found that those of us working in an office environment - regardless of the industry sector - spend up to 75% of our working hours sitting at a desk answering emails. If this is the case, how are any of us expected to be creative and what can we do to get out of this rut and tap into our natural creativity?
Life post-overdose had a different intensity to it - I couldn't run from my struggle anymore. I couldn't keep stuff shoved down and carry on regardless. I couldn't neglect my needs because saving myself after overdosing (I called the ambulance) was cementing a promise to myself - I was going to do this.
The UK creative industries are worth £84.1 billion a year to the UK economy*; an incredible contribution and an area in which the UK shines on a global stage. Our creative exports span across film, music, gaming and publishing (to name but a few), continuously breaking new ground and contributing to the cultural landscape of countries across the world.
Paco Peña (born 1 June 1942) is regarded as one of the world's foremost traditional flamenco players. I interviewed him about his forthcoming production PATRIAS at Sadler's Wells which was premiered at the Edinburgh Festival and will start at Sadler's Wells on July 2th. Patrias is a Spanish word meaning 'homelands'.
Next week is pivotal for the future of artistic diversity in the UK. On 4 July Parliament will debate whether the EBacc should include expressive arts subjects, with the result having potentially huge ramifications for who the arts are 'for' in Britain - are they for everyone to practice and appreciate, or are they the preserve of a wealthy and culturally homogenous elite?
We need this in every business, every home, and every school, to shape a more active, purposeful and engaged society. And we're only going to need it more as the world changes - as robotisation advances, and as we approach the limits of our material culture and its insufficient answers to the challenges of both physical and mental wellbeing.
It's interesting. I don't think I would have made the Gratitude Garden app if I hadn't gone through a difficult time in my career. If life had turned out as I planned, I suspect I would have followed a more traditional route of working for someone else (rather than for myself). I doubt I would ever have had the courage to set something up.
Rob attributes the happiness in his life to his relationship with Gill, his wife of 24 years. They met when Rob was in a psychiatric hospital in Northampton. A whole food cooperative - Daily Bread - employed patients from the hospital, and staff to support them as a way of aiding their recovery. Gill was a member, and Rob was one of the patients she supported.
With technology changing continuously, we will need to lean on the insight of younger talent more and more to ensure that campaigns remain innovative and borderless in the future. Supporting fledgling talent early on in their careers and nurturing their potential, will be the foundation of creating seamless and relevant campaigns in the future.