the Samaritans Radar app

First off I should add a trigger warning, this post will contain some discussion about suicide and mental health issues I’ve experienced directly – I’m going to be blunt and open about some stuff, and if you could find that uncomfortable or a trigger in some way, please don’t read on.

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Project BBTA

Project BBTA

Forgive me blog for I have slipped, it’s been many months since my last post.

I did start a draft on 100 happy days, but felt no urge to complete it.

Lots of this year has sucked, there have been some awesome moments but on the whole… very sucky. It’s time to change that.

Just after I finished 100 happy days I got sick. The arthritis came back in a big bad, I’m struggling to move, kinda way (I won’t bore you with the back story but it stems from food poisoning some years ago – see Reiters posts).

For a couple of weeks my feet and knee were so swollen I could barely stand and had to work from home.


BTW This isn’t a “oh poor me, give me sympathy” post I just need to write it down as part of my process for moving on.

When the symptoms have flared up before it’s only lasted a week, steroids, boom back to normal. Not this time.

Mentally it was hard but it was some of the stupid things that really got to me: my feet were swelled to the point i couldn’t fit in any of my shoes without severe pain… I had to buy special wide fit old person shoes. Nooooo!

I found the uncertainty challenging. At times feeling like maybe this was it, this was how my life would be now, pain.

Some plans had to change, I wasn’t able to train for Land’s End to John O’Groats and took the soul destroying decision to postpone (I WILL do it next year).

But after months of tests, drugs by the bucket load I’m coming out the other side. I owe a great debt to the team at the RNLI who were so supportive, especially Emily and Nathan.

So, what is project BBTA?

This is the fight back. Time to Bring Back The Awesome!

Now I’m mostly better, my feet and index fingers being the only bits really affected, it’s time to take it up a notch.

There are a few small changes to my life like the medication I’m on means I can’t drink.

I’ve got a list of new things I’m going to try as part of BBTA (post to follow).

I’m also going to make more time to say thanks. Where I encounter people being awesome, I’ll write to their head office to spread the awesome.

Bring it.

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Bar camp NFP 14 – Failure Swapshop notes

Another year, another bar camp… another glorious session of sharing failure.

Thanks so much to everyone who attended the Bar camp NFP Failure Swapshop <– if you don’t know what one is, take a look here.

Lessons learned this year:

  • Be prepared
  • look before you leap
  • trust yourself
  • double check the important stuff
  • say no
  • ask “Why?” more
  • think about consequences
  • don’t assume
  • who owns it?
  • what is the real problem
  • collaboration is key
  • look at the big picture
  • don’t proof read your own stuff
  • Think how a picture looks out of context
  • Share your plans

FAIL — I didn’t take a photo, if you took one and you’re happy for me to use it, please tweet it at me!

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Instagram – #100HappyDays – Day 30

Instagram – #100HappyDays – Day 30

At the start of the year I saw a few people tweeting and posting about #100HappyDays, I was dismissive at first thinking it was a social one-upsmanship thing. After seeing a few more people, I took a look at the 100HappyDays site:

We live in times when super-busy schedules have become something to boast about. While the speed of life increases, there is less and less time to enjoy the moment that you are in. The ability to appreciate the moment, the environment and yourself in it, is the base for the bridge towards long term happiness of any human being.

I’ll be really honest, last year had some tough and sucky moments. Some great stuff too but on balance was more of a year to relegate to history… or at least that’s what I found myself saying. Was it? Or was that how I’d framed it… hmmm?

So I decided I’d take part in #100HappyDays using instagram. I chose instagram as I don’t have a large network on there so it would be public but not somewhere I’d be spamming many people daily.

30 days in, what have I taken photos of? 


3 of Lego (1 was about the Lego movie, which is AWESOME)

3 of Custard (my cat) and a friends dog – awww animals!

2 of gadgets – no surprises there

7 of food – fitting the stereotype instagrammer but I hadn’t expected that

5 of scenery

2 of friends

and a few other assorted things


What have I learnt from it?

It’s been good. Sometimes at the end of a tough day, I found myself making time to think about what had been good that day, what had made me happy. That has to be a good thing.

There were less people/events/activities in it than I might have thought. Partly I suppose this is due to the time of year, although since retiring from DJing I think I have been missing something. I’m going to make more of a conscious effort to do stuff, not watch TV or read tech news in my spare time. Get out, see people, learn a language, hack stuff…

That has to be a good outcome. Roll on day 100 – who knows, I may carry on longer…

If you’re also doing #100HappyDays I’d love to know how you’re finding it – link me to your stream of pictures/posts please!

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