Friday, September 13, 2013


Radio 4 Woman's Hour is a constant source of information, inspiration and Naga chilli-hot well done Team Murray, and the recent discussion about whether dyeing grey hair is a feminist issue was absorbing! 

On a personal note, my hair has ticked most colour boxes over the last 3 decades of my 'style evolution' and even though the cut has been fairly consistent, the colour and shading combinations would put Laga Gaga to shame! Until recently that is! Budget wise, the supergrass nature of my hair has always meant numerous trips to the salon and even though one of the largest expense categories in my accounts has always been my hair, it is not simply a financial re-evaluation that is changing my cosmetological behaviour! I actually like how my hair is greying. Did I say that out loud?  Will I now be tying a piece of leather to my glasses to prevent losing them? 

When silver streaks appeared, I immediately hit the colour charts but a few positive comments from an assortment of passers-by, airline stewards and friends gave me confidence to embrace the change, especially when they genuinely thought I had highlights! However, not all comments have been positive and the negative ones have usually favoured and promoted the cultural ideal of image and staying young, a point substantiated by a guest on Woman's Hour. "We are culturally conditioned to hang onto youth rather than go boldly grey" and therefore, to reveal the silver can be seen as a weakness, a giving in, a betrayal to the 'forever young crowd' and sadly, in some industries, an exit door or a barrier to promotion. (For women, that is.)

Is embracing the grey a feminist decision? Firstly, going grey is not merely a female issue - men face it too but without the same amount of pressure and stigma attached. Secondly, it's about choice...and surely feminism is about the freedom to choose rather than being driven by fear to conform. Whether I am a feminist or not...embracing my grey continues to be a complex matter of peaceful negotiation within ...and right now, my colour choice does not diminish me, sideline me or mean I have 'let myself go'. Quite the opposite, like so many others around me, I am attempting to face and navigate the creative nuances of ageing with courage!

So let's applaud and support one another through life's transitions rather than label, stigmatize or judge superficially. After all, isn't grey the new black...?

Friday, August 23, 2013


During a recent trip to Trondheim, Norway, I was dazzled by this view. Mesmerised by the calm beauty, I was daily teased and tempted to embrace it and risk the enabling of MY life-speed to be altered and re-configured.

The duty of days and diary commitments, the panic of ideas half-done and aspirations unrealised, the often enriching and at times challenging activity of living and giving creates a pace which is hard to suspend...even for a moment. 

Slow down? Think? Not think? Enjoy? Rest? For how long? What else could I be doing? These were the questions that scrambled my mind as if entertaining strangers...but soon I realised the unfamiliar pattern of stillness should not be a distant and rarely visited option but rather, an absolute necessity. Why? Well, within the stillness is not an absence but a presence. We are able to refresh the touch and awareness of our creator, soak in the wonder of such a designer and find opportunity to deepen our sense of habitation and purpose.  I now want more, not less, moments of intentional reflection and meditation - so maybe my life speed has already become slightly re-configured! My scarcity of space does have a solution, and that solution is me!

post feature from

Saturday, May 11, 2013


Always loved this song...

It was co-written with a couple of friends for my Personal Worship 3 CD...and I think it captures the essence of the beauty and melody of God...

it LIFTS my eyes....


Monday, May 06, 2013


In a recent skype conversation with a friend, I mentioned my desire to do something worthwhile with my life...she laughed....silence.....and then with a twist of the ironic she responded.."of course, because you have never done that!" We switched topics.

This exchange took a few moments but the echo of her words unravelled many thoughts and emotions, events and encounters...and believe me, after almost 30 years of touring, travelling, performing and speaking, I had a lot of memories to draw upon! My overwhelming furiotic head narrative finally eased into a relatively calm and collected epiphany - I actually never allow myself to be happy about my achievements because they are never enough! So what lies beneath the never enough? What fears or fallacies occupy these depths? And.... have I allowed identity thieves to sit on the sofas of my inner chambers and rob me of any justifiable (and indeed God-given) sense of value?

Brene Brown quotes global activist Lynne Twist from her book 'The Soul of Money',
"Before we even sit up in bed, before our feet touch the floor, we're already inadequate, already behind, already losing, already lacking something....this internal condition of scarcity, this mind-set of scarcity, lives at the very heart of our jealousies, our greed, our prejudice and our arguments."

According to Brown, worrying about scarcity or 'never enough', is "our culture's version of post-traumatic stress" and its an epidemic! "Never good enough, never perfect enough, never thin enough, never safe enough"...the list goes on...and thrives in a culture where everyone is "hyperaware of lack." She continues, "The opposite of scarcity its very core is vulnerability and worthiness."

Already challenged and only a few pages in. My head keeps telling me I know all this, but my heart is  disagreeing...another case of dualism in design...'s not about bigging things up in order to feel more than enough; it's not about pimping up versions of the truth and glazing them with a glossy finish; it's not even about multiplying facebook followers by enhancing your digital persona.... BUT it is about cultivating a place of worthiness and having the courage to own our vulnerabilities...

The recently planet-earth departed writer and contemplative Brennan Manning often spoke about 'belovedness' and below is my most favourite quote of his. There seems to be a tie up...and maybe this never enough will be bravely faced and conquered month by month as I actively cultivate worthiness - because of my belovedness and not because of any achievements...

Saturday, May 04, 2013


Brenè Brown flew into my media world like a hi-speed hurricane and 2 TED Talks later, I was blown away. Her rational and heartfelt thoughts about her journey into vulnerability was illuminating and challenging, as she laced her evolving epiphany with heaped spoonfuls of humour as well as citrus-sharp insight and mouth-watering self-awareness. To be honest, it was bitter-sweet!

To recap for those who have never heard of Brene or TED.

She is a research professor, speaker and author and has spent the last decade studying vulnerability, courage, worthiness and shame. TED is devoted to ideas worth spreading and brings people together from the 3 worlds of Technology, Entertainment and Design. Talks and performances from inspired speakers can be found at and they really are...inspiring!

Brenè Brown and TED collided in 2010 at TEDx Houston when she gave a talk on 'The Power Of Vulnerability', which went viral, and 'Daring Greatly' is an expansive version of those 20 minutes. Of course....get the book, watch the TED talk. In no way am I writing book study notes, but I will  regularly provide mini-lunches of personal and probably, random, very soon, taste and see.... and if you delve into 'Daring Greatly for yourself, I guarantee a banquet!

I will outro this intro with her book-buzzing quote from USA President Theodore Roosevelt's speech 'Citizenship in a Republic'.

"It is not the critic who counts; not the man who points out how the strong man stumbles, or where the doer of deeds could have done them better. 

The credit belongs to the man who is actually in the arena, whose face is marred by dust and sweat and blood; who strives valiantly, who errs, who comes short again and again, because there is no effort without error and shortcoming; 

who at the best knows in the end the triumph of high achievement, and who at the worst, if he fails, at least fails daring greatly."

Saturday, January 21, 2012


One of the things you notice first is the amount of bikes..everywhere...flying past you, behind you, in front of fact there are few rules of the road's a case of "If there is a space, drive into it"....which makes for an interesting journey!
The main bikes are ROYAL ENFIELD.. first built and designed in England but now owned by India...and new models are coming out all the time. Their website is announcing a Thunderbird 500 coming soon, a Classic Chrome, a Desert Storm...the list goes on...

All these bikes add to the frenzy of the many people...about 1.22 billion, making it the 2nd most populous country in the world. India represents almost 17.31% of the world's population, which means one out of six people on this planet live in India and by 2050 it's expected to be top with 1.7 billion. Even more interesting is that over 50% of the current population are under 25 years!!

These statistics are challenging for a country so rapidly changing with the influx of technology and consumerism but also in a country full of stark contrasts...from bollywood splendour to slum tragedy and from media momentum to poverty traps...and yet each person is unique and equally loved by their designer - God.

Each day my head and my heart is spinning...

Friday, January 20, 2012


Have had a day of preparing for the next lot of with the music track - 9 students - for the next 4 days and then the Arts Gathering...more on that later...but today a coffee miracle happened. I can cope without a lot of my usual things here...and I love Indian food...BUT I have been craving good coffee...and so today a Norwegian friend of mine answered my plea and brought with him some good ole Starbucks...

Big delights can come in small packages...