The Magic

This is my first adult attempt at poetry, something I loved as a child. Please be gentle in your critique of it.



I love that we are all connected, I love that sense of one

That nature reconnects us all when everything is done

The gentle swaying of the trees reminds me of my soul

That we were once from earth it seems a fairly simple role


Our only job whilst being here is learning what we need

The earth, the sun and water join to blossom with the seed

No need to stray too far but most forget the magic script

And suffer from a disconnect as from our plan we’re ripped


We struggle with our role it seems and lose the sense of flow

And make life so much harder, inside we always know

The things we need to focus on get lost within the mix

And conflict becomes the norm for us, we lose the will to fix


If only we would trust in life and allow the love to flow

It’s not our job to plan it all as nature always knows

If only we would trust ourselves and show up to witness now

The world would be a better place and full of fizz and pow


Our lives are meant to play with love & ease and fun

But we forget our childhood magic and seek to push and run

We need to slow ourselves right down and take the time to play

And when we finally get it right the magic saves the day


I love that we are all connected, I love that sense of one

That nature reconnects us all when everything is done

The gentle swaying of the trees reminds me of my soul

That we were once from earth it seems a fairly simple role

Enjoy The Moment

I haven’t been writing much during the last couple of lockdown’s, I’ve been struggling with my mental health but haven’t really shared that fact much as I’ve been too afraid of coming across as “a whinger”. Part of that has been because I feel guilty for feeling this way. I have so much in my life compared to others. But that doesn’t make it any easier sometimes to stay in a happy frame of mind.

Lots of people waste energy comparing their lives to others and bemoaning the fact that their life isn’t as good. But having material possessions or wealth doesn’t automatically guarantee happiness. And focusing on what you don’t have automatically puts your brain into a state of feeling your lack. That doesn’t lend itself to attracting what you desire but rather it tends to actually attract more of what you don’t want.

Having had a coaching session yesterday I can now see that I had been doing something similar but in reverse. Instead of focusing on my lack of “things” I had been focusing on my lack of joy and beating myself up because I didn’t deserve to be unhappy when I compared my life to others. I am financially secure, I have a comfortable home and a holiday lodge by the sea. But  instead of taking the time to enjoy those things and appreciate what I have I have been focusing on my negative emotions.

Today I woke up to sunshine, after a very disturbed nights sleep (painsomnia is a frequent visitor in my life) Usually I would have used that as an excuse to have a couch potato day and spent most of the day watching Netflix and worrying about what I needed to do, whilst not actually getting anything done.

But today I took the opportunity to spend an hour on my swing seat. I wrote a poem (see end of this blog post) and wrote my first blog entry since October.  Rather than being an indulgence on my part it’s actually energised me and I now feel ready to tackle some of the things I could have done yesterday. I’ve put myself in a positive frame of mind and that’s attracting more positivity to my life. 

I’d like to offer you a challenge on the back of my discovery. If you’re struggling today please take 15-30 mins and do something positive. Some suggestions would be to take a walk in nature (can be round your garden), watch an uplifting video clip on YouTube or maybe just read a chapter of a book you’ve been meaning to get to. Even if you have a jam packed schedule I suspect just doing that one small thing will kick start your energy levels and allow you to do more in the day than you would have achieved if you hadn’t carved out your positivity slot. 

So have a great day everyone and make time for yourself in your busy lives.

 Here’s the poem I wrote:- 

Rocking gently on my swing

Breeze blows through, a whiff of spring

The sun is gentle, it warms my soul

Taking time for this will keep me whole

We can forget to slow and note

Just what we have, this gets my vote

Always rushing on to next job due

Just stop a while, enjoy the view

Birds gentle chorus lulls and soothes

Something inside stirs and moves

I’ve been so stuck, overwhelmed with fear

But something’s shifted, my peace is near

Do it Now revisited

I wrote a blog post back on 5th March this year that talked about living your life now and not putting things off or saving “stuff” up for a “rainy day” At that time the word Lockdown wasn’t part of our daily lives and, with hindsight, it was a very timely post.

Little did I know that only a couple of weeks later lots of activities which we took for granted (hugs with family and friends, family get togethers, big wedding celebrations, going to the cinema) would be taken away from us when the pandemic struck.

However I have to admit to having put off something which I knew would make me very happy for literally years. My “happy place” has always been the seaside. I don’t know if it’s because I lost my mum when she died, aged 45, and I have lots of happy memories of our caravan holidays, at Dawlish Warren, before we lost her. But whatever the reason I can always guarantee feeling better after some time at the coast. Since my husband retired we have made a point of going out for the day, once a week, and enjoying visiting the beautiful places we have access to down here in Devon. I’m never happier than when those outings end up by the sea.

There’s just something about the smell of seaweed, the cries of the seagulls and the sound of the waves breaking on the shoreline that evokes a sense of calm and peace in me. I’ve always dreamed of living by the sea and love seeing those beach houses on American films where the balcony has steps leading directly down onto the beach. However up until now I’ve never done anything about making my dream a reality and that’s something I wish I’d done earlier.

When I had my mental health breakdown and left my previous employment I took my employers to an Employment Tribunal and won some compensation from them. My husband wanted to save it for that “rainy day” so it sat in a bank account waiting for a day that maybe will never come. I now wish we’d used it to buy a little caravan by the sea so that I had somewhere to visit and spend more time in my happy place. However, twelve years later, I’ve finally done something about making that dream a reality.

My mother in law died last year and we inherited a nice little sum of money from her estate. Four weeks ago we used most of that money to buy a beautiful lodge, by the sea, at Shaldon, only 45 minutes drive from our current home in Tiverton. It’s much more luxurious than anything we could previously have afforded and we are so grateful to be in a position to afford it. I now spend 4-5 days a week here and am currently writing this post looking out over a stormy ocean view.

It’s a lovely spot with a view all the way down the jurassic coastline (on a clear day) and I can feel myself relaxing every time I turn off the dual-carriageway and head across the heather-clad moorland towards Teignmouth. As I drive over the crest of the hill I see the sea spread out before me. I sigh and say a silent thank you that I now have this little spot of heaven in my life.

I’m looking forward to getting back to doing more writing and am already re-energised and ready to do some more work on several of my current writing projects. First on the list is my book of guided imagery meditation scripts and I hope to be getting that published before summer 2021.

But the main reason I’m posting about this is to send out a reminder to anyone reading this. Take action and do something today to make some of your dreams a reality. Start off with some of the small ones (maybe enquiring about those art classes, using your “best” china now or lighting those yankee candles you’ve been saving for ????)

My mum didn’t know she only had 45 years on the planet. She spent most of her time doing things for everyone else and putting her needs last, don’t let that be you. She died before she had a chance to make some of her dreams a reality and that makes me sad.

This particularly applies to women. Often they’re so busy being mum, wife, sister, caregiver, worker….. they forget to carve out time for themselves. That’s not selfish, you have to look after yourself in order to be able to look after everyone else in your life.

And don’t wait to tell someone you love them, give someone a hug or just ring that friend to make a date for meeting for coffee. Live every day as if it’s your last. None of us know just how many days we have to live so make every day the best it can be. That way you’ll live a life with fewer regrets.

And if you’d like some musical inspiration to get you started then check out this amazing video:- https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=tm8ZzOt_1bs

Learn from yesterday. Live for today. Hope for tomorrow. The important thing is not to stop questioning. Albert Einstein

Choices – Be Grateful

Yesterday I posted a video of a poem I wrote for the weekend. It got me thinking about the whole topic of choices and here’s my thoughts.

If you’d like to hear the poem then head over to any of these social media platforms :- https://www.facebook.com/suzi.french1   https://www.instagram.com/suzi_magic https://www.linkedin.com/in/suzimagic

Almost every human being (if not all) has life challenges. It’s what we do with those choices that shape the way our life pans out. When I think back 12 years to my mental health breakdown I know that, at the time, I felt my life was pretty much over. I didn’t know how to carry on without being able to be a nurse and help people. One of my core values has always been to make a difference.

However I was pouring from an empty cup. I’d known for quite some time that my frequent 12hr days, early morning waking and stressing over deadlines in my trade union work was  a sure sign that I wasn’t coping very well. I went to my GP for help and was told the only thing on offer was medication as I wasn’t (at that point) in a bad enough way to be able to access any of Devon’s scarce resources. I took the medication but that seemed to me to be equivalent to putting a sticking plaster over a gaping wound.

It wasn’t enough and slowly but surely my descent into a very dark place continued apace. Within 6 months I had no choice but to go off sick. I ended up never being able to go back to the job I had once loved so much and life had to take a new direction. I was diagnosed with Obsessive Compulsive Disorder (OCD), anxiety & depression.

Because I was now deemed ill enough to warrant other help I finally was offered Cognitive Behaviourial Therapy and a support group with a Clinical Psychologist. These therapies enabled me to start the long road back to recovering my mental health.

Now at this time I had choices. 1) I could have chosen to adopt the “victim mode” and whinged and griped about my circumstances. 2) I could have spent lots of time stuck in blame mode and bemoaning the fact that I’d faced disability discrimination when trying to facilitate a return to my old job. 3) I could have held onto my anger against my old boss for refusing to see that I had been let down by a faulty employment system………….

But I chose instead to 1) I decided to retrain in several other skills to maximise my employment opportunities (I vowed never again to be someone’s employee) 2) I took my old employers to an employment tribunal and sued them successfully for constructive dismissal and disability discrimination (Friends who still work for my ex employer, tell me that most of the things I stated as being reasons for exacerbating my workplace stress, have now been looked at and new systems have been put in place to prevent what happened to me happening again – result!!!) 3) As a mainly pacifist person I was horrified at the amount of anger I had towards my ex boss. I genuinely worried that, if I met them locally, I might go up and punch them. For anyone who knows me well you will know that that was well out of character. So I chose to go and see a life coach (http://www.nikichalkley.com) and she helped me to get rid of that anger using one of my favourite life coaching tools logosynthesis. It wasn’t serving me to hold onto it and I was very glad to let it go (channeling my inner Elsa even though she hadn’t yet appeared on the scene at that time) Fast forward 12 years and I now see that experience as the best thing that ever happened to me. I am much happier and have a much more balanced life as a result. If I’d made different choices that may not have been the case.

Now I know some of you will be reading this and saying to yourself it’s easier said than done, but there’s always a positive spin you can put on something. I’m writing this having not had a very good nights sleep. I could choose to worry about what that will do to my day. Instead I decided to see it as a bonus allowing me to get this blog post written early. Then, if I want to, I can always indulge in an afternoon nap later on in the day. Once you start looking for the positive more of it tends to come into your life. Say you were thinking of buying a red car, amazingly you’d find that suddenly you’re noticing red cars everywhere you go. There’s a phrase that sums this up perfectly. “Where focus goes energy flows” so please focus on the positive in your life so that you can attract more.

I wish you all a happy Sunday and hope that today brings lots of positivity your way. If it doesn’t hang on in there and try and find at least one thing you can be grateful for.

Love and pixie dust to all

Suzi x

PS If you’d like a copy of my first poetry book then get yours here:- https://www.amazon.co.uk/dp/B07XC8KLC5


Pace yourself

Something I’ve always struggled with is pacing myself. I have a terrible habit of going 100 miles an hour at something and then wondering why I crash and burn. I should know better as I have had years of dealing with chronic pain from my back problems and have had a lot of input from health service providers about the importance of pacing.

The trouble is, when you have a good day pain-wise, it’s tempting to forge ahead and do all the things you’ve had to put aside on your bad days because you really don’t know how long the good day will last. I’m not alone in this and it’s something that a lot of people struggle with.

I’ve recently had another timely reminder of it. In my last blog post I shared with you the amazing safer adaptive boxing classes I have discovered during lockdown. They really have been a lifeline for me and my physical and mental health have markedly improved since starting them. The other benefit has been a reduction in my pain levels. So I jumped on board and, as of Saturday this week, had done daily 1hr sessions for 12 days.

My husband, Alan, was mumbling on about the need to rest muscles but I am very bad at listening to what he says (I’m working on that). Day 11 I finished the session, but barely, as my “brain fog” from my Fibromyalgia was starting to kick in. Punch combinations that I had previously mastered were causing me difficulties and my classic overthinking habit appeared. Everything felt “sludgy” and hard and that wasn’t as much fun. I knew I needed to rest but I enjoy the classes so much I chose to pitch up for more on Friday morning.

During that class I asked the coach, Luiz, about the importance of rest and she confirmed what I already knew to be sensible and suggested at least one rest day over the weekend. I took Saturday off and on Sunday I did a session 45 minute on my own but slowed the moves right down and concentrated on core conditioning instead of cardio and fat burn. (amazingly enough boxing still gave me 30mins of fat burn even doing it like that, it really is an amazing form of exercise compared to things I’ve tried in the past)

I’m currently writing my second poetry book which will also be a guide to leading a happy and healthy life and the importance of rest and recovery will feature in that book. I know this stuff so why is it that I don’t follow my own advice? 
I know I’m not alone in this as lots of my friends and colleagues are in the wellness arena. They, like me, tell me that they are very good at helping others but sometimes forget to take their own advice.

It’s a lesson we can all learn from and one I think lockdown is teaching a lot of people. Lots of people are starting to realise that life doesn’t have to be lived at such a fast pace. It’s OK to take time to rest and relax and do you know what? It actually makes you more efficient when you get back to whatever it was you were doing. 

I rejoined the live classes yesterday and decided to do the whole class at a much slower pace. I still enjoyed it and was amazed to find that I’d still spent the majority of the session in fat burn mode and lost just as many calories as doing it full speed. I need to learn from this and realise I don’t have to be perfect. I simply have to do the best I can and build in time for rest and recovery.

In these challenging times please recognise when you’re tired and worn down (can be physical or mental) and take time out to replenish your energy. 
Stay magical dear souls 🧚‍♀‍

Photo by Derek Liang on Unsplash

Seconds Out Round 2

I have been really struggling as the lockdown continues and saw a return of my depression symptoms, so much so that I had to go back on medication again. At the same time my chronic pain got worse and the treatment I had just before lockdown did nothing at all to ease it. For the last few weeks I struggled to get out of bed before mid afternoon and couldn’t get motivated to do much of anything. Until last week I was wasting the days away watching TV, surfing social media and playing games on my phone.

My consultant had reminded me about the importance of exercise in controlling the pain and, without my weekly wheelchair tennis sessions, I was doing absolutely nothing. My physio referral won’t happen until after lockdown now, so I went online and downloaded some recommended back exercises to do at home. I had a week where I did those every day but, gradually, they just made the pain worse and so I had to stop again. I had resigned myself to living a half life until the pandemic had resolved but then I was offered a lifeline by an adaptive boxing coach (Luiz Faye – see picture) who is running seated boxing fitness classes online, every weekday.

Anyone who knows me will know that it’s not really in my nature to go around punching people. My friends were surprised when I started to do Tae Kwon Do, a few years ago, when I was still able to. But I absolutely loved it, although I never really enjoyed the sparring part. I was always much happier doing patterns, solo moves and pad work. I was a bit nervous about trying boxing because, again, I didn’t really want to punch actual people. However Luiz reassured me that plenty of people enjoyed the sport by just doing the training, combinations and pad work and there was no requirement to hit anyone, phew!!!

I did my first session on Friday and absolutely loved it. It was held in the morning and that was the first day since lockdown that I have had a happy and productive day. The exercise is really working as an excellent antidepressant for me, so much so that I’m going to wean myself off the medication again. I’m going to taper down my pain meds as well as it’s really helping my pain too. I am so glad I found it and can already feel my fitness improving along with my core muscles and stamina.

Luiz is an excellent coach and stresses the importance of pacing ourselves, there’s no pressure to do too much and the other students are an interesting and fun group. She is patient and very clear about what to expect and I find myself wanting to check out a real boxing gym once lockdown is over. Something that I never expected to want to do. It’s a shame she lives up in Yorkshire but the World Boxing Council is hoping to set up groups around the country once they have worked out the relevant protocols and the online classes are going to continue. This is something I will definitely be keeping in my life going forward.

If you know of any fellow wheelies who might be interested then please share and check out Luiz’s facebook group which has full details. https://www.facebook.com/groups/699514570786482

My take on the Corona Virus and a call for help

I’ve struggled with lots of things since the lockdown to slow the spread of the corona virus was enforced.

I miss going to the coast and smelling the seaside smells, listening to the waves roll in and crash on the shore and maybe, if it’s warm enough, having a bag of chips sitting outside (they never taste as good anywhere else and, I’m old enough to remember how they tasted even better when we were allowed to eat them out of newspaper, that’s something I miss at anytime)

I miss hugs with my daughter and friends and can’t wait to hug everyone as soon as we are allowed to do that.

I miss my face to face networking, although online networking has it’s advantages (how many of us are wearing pyjama bottoms whilst we chat away in our “business voices” hahaha?) I started my own group just before all of this and have had to move that online now (www.bit.ly/coffeeladies)

But I have gained some positives in my life too.

I am loving my new daily habit (most days anyway, I have had some dark moments when that’s not happened) of going for a walk outside. I’m so grateful that we live so close to the canal and really feel for anyone who is stuck in a flat with no green spaces nearby.

I am loving the sense of community that is starting to blossom amongst the fear and worry. I am part of a local initiative to help out anyone in my neighbourhood who can’t get out and am doing some shopping and collecting prescriptions for a few local people. I’ve also joined the NHS volunteer initiative which is similar but on a much larger scale (https://www.england.nhs.uk/2020/03/your-nhs-needs-you-nhs-call-for-volunteer-army) This isn’t operating fully yet as they have been overwhelmed by the numbers who have volunteered and they’ve had to pause new applications whilst they process the 750,000 people who lined up to help out (WOW!!!)

I’m loving how much decluttering I’m getting done. Something like this clearly shows us how unimportant “stuff” is and I’m working my way through getting rid of anything that doesn’t serve me anymore. That includes activities. I have spent a lot of time thinking about what I want keep in my business. I’m 60 in 2 months time and want to semi retire so I will be concentrating more on my writing going forward. I also want to do more meditation and will be running a local group when the restrictions have been lifted. I’m going to practice my skills by running a free online group every Monday during lockdown (www.bit.ly/suzimed) and then start the face to face version once we’re back to normal. Although I suspect our new normal will look very different, with all the new things we will take out of our current experiences.

I’ve been trying to get back to writing my novel recently. It’s all about a girl who discovers she’s half fairy on her 14th Birthday. I plan a whole series of these books which will follow her as she learns how to navigate her world now she knows about her magical heritage. The trouble is it’s really hard to write about magic, unicorns etc when all around you is news of illness, death and hardship. I’ve got stuck and desperately need some help to get going again.

I was thinking about this recently and have come up with an idea which might help. I’ve opened a facebook group and asked for people to help me out with ideas on where to take the story and what some of the plot twists might be. That way I hope it’ll kickstart my imagination again. It will also allow others to contribute to a book and feel some of their ideas have helped form the storylines. Please come and join if you’d like to contribute, I’ll be posting my first request for help over the weekend. (www.bit.ly/bookcoop)

To finish this post off I’d like to take the opportunity to thank all of the people who have carried on working selflessly during these tricky times. Let’s take a moment to appreciate all of the NHS workers (to include cleaners, porters etc.), teachers, private care workers, police, farmers, military, pharmacists, dustmen, shop assistants, postal workers, delivery drivers and anyone who else who are keeping the infrastructure going. We are very grateful for what you are doing.

Stay safe everyone and remember …..

Imaginary fears do as much damage to your happiness as real ones. Let your imagination take you to happy places, the feelings that will generate will carry you through the darkest of days.

Stay safe and see you on the other side

Photos by Robyn Budlender & Ella Jardim on Unsplash

Do it now!!!

Winter time is a tricky time for me as I’m fairly certain I suffer from SAD (Seasonal Affective Disorder). A friend (thanks James Blakeway) recommended taking Vitamin D and that has helped enormously. I also use a Daylight lamp and try and get outside for a walk on a regular basis.

One of the things that often go off plan in this season is my weight. I am a classic yo-yo dieter and use food to try (unsuccessfully) to manage my emotions. I have no idea why I still do this as I know it doesn’t help but I obviously still have an old script playing in my subconscious. As part of my new strategy for managing that, I have started to attend a slimming club to get weighed. I find that helps me enormously (I know that’s part of my “people pleasing” pysche and need to change that but it works so don’t judge me in this instance) Anyways part of the group activity involves us having a discussion about our feelings and attitudes towards food.

Last night we found ourselves discussing why we save some of our “stuff” for the future. Caroline, the group leader, talked about only wearing your Manolo Blahnic shoes (see Carrie in Sex & The City if you’re shoe person like me) on limited occasions and saving them for best. I have lots of Yankee Candles in my house and I light them up on a regular basis. However I know lots of people who choose to keep them intact and never burn them. We only get one life so we should be living it now and not saving stuff for later. Sorry to be a Debbie Downer but some of us won’t have a later. (My mum died when she was 45 at a time when she finally had some spare money to use on holidays etc but never got to experience that freedom) So light the candle, wear the Manolo’s (I have a pair that have only been worn once so I’m looking for some more opportunities to get them on) use your best china or do whatever it is you’ve been keeping pristine. have fun!!!

As part of last night’s group we also had to make 3 commitments. I committed to writing for at least half an hour on 5 out of 7 days a week, taking a 10 minute walk outside on 5 of 7 days and have totally forgotten the last one (should have taken a photo of them like Caroline suggested but thought my memory was OK, mistake!) So this blog post is my commitment to doing that and those two things will help me to lift my mood and see me through to spring.

Would love to hear from you what you will be doing differently as a result of reading this post. Post a comment or use the contact form on my website http://www.suzimagic.com

Photo by Eduardo C.G. on Unsplash

Choices affect the Magic

I watched “The Secret” (https://www.youtube.com/user/thesecret) a few years ago and since then have been reading a lot about the law of attraction. My favourite author on the subject is Genevieve Davis. If you’d like to check out her first book you can find it here :- https://amzn.to/2QegV3F . She talks about the common failure in manifesting things as being an inability to get yourself into what she calls “the receiving state”.

I find it really difficult to fully relax and let go and am married to someone who finds it even more difficult. That’s a challenge for me as I can get myself into “the receiving state” but I can struggle to remain there, especially if he’s busy concentrating on everything that might go wrong and focusing on negativity and lack. If anyone has any tips for remaining positive in the face of a “glass half empty” person then I’d love to hear what they are.

Something happened earlier this week that demonstrated this perfectly. We are on holiday in Tenerife and had booked to go on a half day coach trip to see the volcanic scenery around a now dormant volcano on the island. We went down and had an early breakfast and then met the coach outside the hotel . My anxiety levels always rise when we’re using public transport as I am a part time wheelchair user. I had managed to put aside my fears that my chair wouldn’t fit in the bus, the company would forget to save me a seat at the front (so I wouldn’t have to walk too far when I got on) or I wouldn’t be able to manage the steps up into the coach. I was in the receiving state and trusting the universe to look after me and feeling really good. The magic was flowing and I was looking forward to an adventure with conviction that all would be well.

Then my husband discovered he hadn’t got his mobile phone. We realised he must have left it somewhere in the hotel that morning as he’d had it with him at breakfast. He immediately went into negativity mode and was insisting that that would be the last time he saw the phone as someone would obviously have stolen it from wherever he had left it. We rang the phone to see if someone might answer but no-one did and then rang the hotel to tell them what had happened and ask them to keep a lookout for it. He wanted me to ring it every few minutes and keep ringing it in case we got an answer.

I was trying to remain calm during this and explained that there was nothing more we could do now. I tried to get him to focus on enjoying our trip and said dwelling on it wouldn’t change anything but he refused to get out of his angry mode. Negative energy was positively oozing out of him so I wasn’t surprised when the lady tour guide leaned over and asked if we could be a bit quieter as she was finding it hard to concentrate on her commentary, which she was giving in 3 separate languages. He did stop then and shortly after we heard from the hotel that they’d found the phone and would hold it at reception until we got back.

He’d had a choice and chosen lack which probably would have manifested a lost phone if he’d been on his own. However I like to think my focus on how friendly the hotel staff and guests were and how helpful, everybody had been up until that point, swayed the universe to give it back in this instance.

We always have choices and our choices affect how the law of attraction works in our lives. Choose well and the magic will flow.

My next little book of poetry is going to be dedicated to this subject with sections about manifesting, meditation and trusting rather than controlling. Watch out for information about when it might be published.

I’ll sign off now as the sunshine awaits.

Today’s featured image is my view as I was writing this.

My support family

Last night I joined a group of people, most of which I hadn’t met before, for a curry (a food I absolutely don’t enjoy!!!) Why did I do it you may ask? Well I have been a member of a networking organisation for well over a year now and have met friends, customers and new team members for my business through it.

4 Networking is not like a lot of the traditional networking organisations where you are pressured into passing on referrals and helping people do business with people they don’t even know. It’s all about building real relationships with individuals and getting to know, like and trust them before you go on to do business with them. To be honest most of the people I work with have become personal friends.

When you are in business as a sole trader it can be a very lonely place to be. Joining this organisation has meant I have support and lots of people who I can bounce ideas off. It seems to attract people who are my sort of people and I genuinely look forward to going to the meetings.

My first introduction to 4N was when I went to a lunch group over in Chard, Somerset (sadly this group has since folded). I was met at the door by the lovely Kirtsy Grimes from http://www.weloveourlocals.co.uk  Kirsty was wearing a cat dress, cat ears, cat paws and even a tail. I instantly knew that this was the right fit for me as I absolutely adore cats and also anyone who has the nerve to dress up like this inspires me to do funky things too. The meeting was held at http://www.ferneanimalsanctuary.org and there I was introduced to the magic that is 4N. I joined up and can’t imagine being without the support of everyone I have met at all the meetings since.

Brad Burton, the founder of the organisation, also runs a private members group, on facebook, which gives you tasks to help you further develop your business. Last night’s curry meet up was a chance to meet some of the people from that private group so I went along to discover the two dimensional people I had gotten to know online were actually real life flesh and blood people too. It was great fun. In the featured image you can just see the top of my headband at the end of the table behind Alison’s (lady with long black hair) head.

Yesterday’s experience inspired me to write today’s poem so here it is for you to enjoy.


How to explain what 4N is

It’s Brad’s magical network, it’s just the Biz

So who is Brad I hear you say

Well he used to be a drug dealer, back in the day


But then he had life’s shit in his face

He turned around and left his place

To go down south and start again

He left behind that grief and pain


He didn’t know a soul down there

So went to network and lost his hair

The groups he joined were formal and stuffy

So he formed his own, they’re a bit more fluffy


Instead of sharing boring facts

You get to know some personal stats

The meetings are half business, half fun

If you don’t like the person, just cut and run


That way you meet your own little tribe

Get customers, referrals and a lovely vibe

It takes some time to build rapport

So carry on and you’ll get more


4N rocks, it’s like having support

When you work on your own it’s your home port

So don’t go it alone, come along and join in

You’ll go away with business and a big grin


If you’d like to find a local 4N group near you then message me at suzifrench9@gmail.com and I can book you into a meeting to check it out

It’s Here

Well at last my book is out there. http://www.amazon.com/author/suzifrench

I cried when the first copy arrived and I held it in my hands for the first time. I wrote it in the hope that it would help fellow OCD, anxiety and depression sufferers that there was life after mental illness.

If you’d asked me 11 years ago whether I thought I’d ever be well enough and happy enough to write and self publish a book about my experiences I would have laughed in your face. Back then it felt like my life was over and I’d never be happy again.

Fast forward 11 years and here I am happy, fulfilled and enjoying my life. I am self employed with a couple of other businesses besides my writing and everything I do is done with the intention of making a difference to people’s lives.

My first amazon review was a complete stranger and she said it was helpful and she wished it were longer so I’ve already achieved my goal of helping people with mental health issues. I hope it will be helpful to those that care for sufferers too and give them a little insight into how strange our experiences can be.

Life is good just now and I am already thinking about making a whole series of poetry books which deal with improving the quality of people’s lives.