I have always been a night owl. When I first discovered how liberating it was to be awake in my space when the world was sleeping, it made all the difference. It was the first time I realised that we are always made to feel so guilty about 'wasting time'. We are always made to feel as though daydreaming is reductive and as though we need to be producing something, fixing something, getting involved with something. It's a status thing and it's a lie. Staring at the stars for hours is sacred time. It is restorative. It is expansive. It is food. I realised that if I wanted that kind of time, I should take it.

Nostalgia can feel so painful. But these days I take it as a sign that I need to lie on my bedroom floor listening to old albums which were big in my life ten years ago and just melting into them. I allow the pictures to come to me and form like comic strips. I surrender to the takeover. There's something to consume from the ash of those inner worlds; it's not just about going back, it's about taking what you need in order to go forward. I believe that now, and it's because I suffered from insomnia in my teens and so realised that a lot of internal stuff can be worked out when you're not dealing with the pressure of doing something. The truth is that sitting still and letting it all pour out of you (and into you) is doing something.

Believe that you are entitled to be bold. Create the perfect moment rather than passively waiting for it.

Believe that you are entitled to vast, fulfilling, transcended moments. They are your birthright.

So many people talk about going to the other side of the world to 'find themselves' as though they are half-finished or they can't get any signal and need to strain to hear their own insights. There's a real desperate urgency behind that phraseology. It is another lie that we're encouraged to swallow.

When I was broke and scrambling around under the bed for lost coins, I had so much time to think. I had no job, no direction and no entry fee. I spent time creating self-portraits with the leftover paint. I became wealthy in another way - I was rich in hours. I was trawling through books I bought when I was financially secure but had no time to read them. They came alive in my hands. They breathed and warmed up as they fulfilled their intended purpose. Although I'm really busy these days, I believe that the mental and financial knife edge gave me something vital - the belief in my right to just be with myself.


us against whatever, babe

Use your stories to dose people with wisdom. Listen to the sound beyond the silence because it always has something important to say. Don't apologise for being human. Van Gogh once said, 'What is done in love is done well'. Start there. Really think about that and about how it relates to your life. Don't be scared of your own voice. Be bold - show people your art.

Hemingway once said, 'The only way to know if you can trust someone is to trust them.' In human connections, there are no half measures. If you have no trust left to give, only you can know when you are ready to heal. Once healed, you might come to know that you can give of yourself without ever diminishing in spirit because you are infinite. You might come to know that you are worth more than a life lived in shadow.

Surround yourself with your favourite colours, tastes and smells. Notice how even the smallest detail can completely change the energy in a room. Don't tell yourself that you're not permitted to seek pleasure, to seek solitude, to hold space for yourself, to break down, to build up, to get some air.. Bolster yourself. Believe in your rights, stand up for your needs and never underestimate the importance of refueling and rejuvenating. Your body can't run on empty; eventually it will break down. So will your soul. Both need food and both need rest. Give generously and they will reward you for it.

Warm your dreams by the fire.

Read it all here.