Guiding Girls into Positive Body Image


If you were ever a Girl Guide, what sort of experiences did you have? I remember cold ground sheets, even colder showers, banana with chocolate pieces warmed by campfire embers, being woken up by sheep peeping into the tent and lots of belly laughs – usually on the coach back, from sheer relief that I had survived the experience!

What I wasn’t aware of was, myself. Or my hair, make up or the shape of my body. Perhaps I grew up in a less pressurised time, or maybe I hadn’t grown into that level of self-consciousness yet, but I certainly don’t recall being concerned about what I looked like. (Hard to believe, if you know me now!)

Guiding: A unique chance for girls to be free of body fascism

Guiding: A unique chance for girls to be free of body fascism

Photo above belongs to Calgary Girl Guides, click here if you would like to make a donation: http://www.calgarygirlguides.com/donations.html

On the Girl Guides website, their aim is to develop:

  • self-confidence, self-esteem
  • sound values
  • ability to cope with change
  • appreciation of others
  • leadership skills
  • healthy lifestyles
  • international understanding
Conversation Between Friends loves confidence

Conversation Between Friends loves confidence

The photo above belongs to Girl Guiding: You can find out more about their campaigns here: http://www.girlguiding.org.uk/campaigns/be_body_confident.aspx

Conversation Between Friends loves confidence and was interested to read that the GG has recently launched a badge called “Free being me” as part of a campaign to address girls’ confidence  – or lack of – in their appearance. A good idea but I felt tinged with sadness reading about it. Would the cubs and boy scouts ever require a similar badge? Being a young woman is a time of exploration, learning, fun and freedom. I wish more girls could grip these ideas as they transform from girls to young women.  All mothers of daughters should encourage their girls to give guiding a go. Actually, if the badge encourages a change in perception, and creates a more positive body images – it’s a great idea.

 

Suzy Rigg

 

 

 

Bullying: It’s not about you!


It’s already gone viral, but it’s a perfect and heart-felt piece of advice for anyone whose been at the raw end of bullying behaviour. And we’ve all been there right?

Conversation Between Friends thoughts about bullying? We don’t approve, not one bit.

 

Smile – you are a perfect version of you!

 

Spring Nail Colour


I love Spring as much as the next girl, all fluffy pink and white blossom, the need to take only a cardigan with you when you go to the shops. But I draw the line at slushy nail colour; you can overdo the pastel thing. I love this opulent plum that I’m currently wearing, it offsets peach chiffon perfectly….and sends out the subtle message that I might look soft and feminine but I mean business ;)

Conversation Between Friends loves Spring Nail Colour

Conversation Between Friends loves Spring Nail Colour

© Suzy Rigg 2014

PResenting…Suzy Rigg


Welcome or welcome back! I would like to go back to basics with some quick fire facts about who I am and what makes me tick… tick,  BOOM! I’m a Communications Expert – more than 13 years’ experience (I know, I look so *young* laughing). I worked as an account manager in pharmaceutical advertising before making the shift to my spiritual home, PR and communications. I do: Copywriting * Copy Editing/proofing * Social Media Marketing * Blogging  * Communications strategy * Script/speech writing, TV and film production for news or feature items or corporate shorts.

What sort of PR work have I done?

Press office (press release writing, toolkits, media briefings etc.) *Crisis/reputation management *Media Relations *Press Briefings *Campaign planning, launch, implementation, measurement *Event management.

I’ve worked in private and public sector and not for profit sectors in the UK with CEOs, senior government officials, trade organisations, celebrities, policy-makers  – I’ve learned that discretion is a highly PRIZED after commodity! I’ve worked with….Discretion, remember? And, as in many creative careers, the line between work and private life can become blurred, I believe in having fun, whilst doing business :)

Conversation Between Friends like charity fundraisers

Conversation Between Friends like charity fundraisers

Suzy Anna R

Sutton Trust Report: Is your parenting good enough?


A recent report by the Sutton Trust, states that 40 per cent of children will be at risk of behaving badly and having lower literacy levels as a result of “failing to bond with their parents.”

The Sutton Trust has neatly put into a research report what many parents know or fear. Unskilled parenting can result in children who are less able to learn and develop in those crucial primary years. Yikes. It’s a huge responsibility bringing another life into the world, especially if your aim is to enable your child to be happy, and make a positive contribution in society. Sure genetics play a part, but the larger part, the most VISIBLE part, is nurture – that’s what you input into your child’s life and daily experience. Your children are at greater risk if you are a young/er parent as you may just not have acquired the skills required for effective parenting. So, in this conversation between friends, what did I learn?

Conversation Between Friends: Mothers

 

I had my first child in my twenties and my second in my thirties and I can honestly say that my input and understanding of child-rearing was much deeper with my second. It’s not helpful to make younger parents feel bad about themselves, however as everyone knows, raising kids is the hardest, as well as the most rewarding job in the world.

Here are some of the things that I learned between child one and child two:

1. Your child places you at the centre of their universe (whether you like it or not). They will copy you and observe everything you do! Try to set a good example for this mini-you.

2. Try to listen to them *in the now*. Stop watching TV, cooking the dinner for a minute or two and give them your full attention. “Later” is a concept that younger children really have trouble grasping. It’s important that your child learns that you are often busy and can’t always ‘drop everything’ but try every third time they interrupt or demand your attention – to give it, fully.

3. Young children, like most people, love eye contact and smiles when they are telling you something. You might feel bored, stressed, unhappy (believe me there were times when I could hardly communicate I was so stressed out about money worries or things going on at work), but practice looking directly at them when they tell you something and smile at them encouragingly. It will help both of you to bond.

4. Reading to your child is, in my opinion, one of the best ways to bond with them. They love the sound of your voice, remember they knew your voice before they saw your face, so this is hugely comforting for them and on the plus side, you will be helping them to became more literate. Good news is that any reading improves literacy, so Beano Annuals are in!

5. Physical contact is natural when your babies are small, but sometimes, when you get to the terrible twos, trouble-some threes and ferocious fours you really don’t feel like hugging them sometimes. But hugs can say more than words, especially if you have lost your temper or been too tired to string a sentence together. A gentle hug at the end of the day can say; I’m here for you, I’m sorry, I care, I love you and so much more.

Remember parenting didn’t come with a handbook so you will make mistakes. Annoyingly each child is different so what works for one, won’t necessarily work for another. But don’t lose hope, keep trying to communicate with your child in whatever way works best for both of you -  give your best, as it’s the best you can do.

 

© Suzy Rigg 2014

Sport Relief 2014


Whilst Davina, David and George were lapping up well-deserved applause on live television, let’s give the chaps and chapesses at schools across the country a round of applause too, as they have been playing their part in raising money.

Budding entrepreneur sells his produce at school

Budding entrepreneur sells his produce at school

If you are a chocolate fan, take a look at his website: www.connors-chocolatier.co.uk

Whatever your views of the charitable sector providing life-giving support to communities where other sources of sustainable living appear to have failed; charitable giving provides a valuable life lesson for young people to think about being part of a wider local and global community. In some cases, it could even open up a dialogue to discuss the softer political issues, like wealth and inequality in an informative way before politics with a big ‘P’ becomes a feature in their lives.

So huge kudos to these young men: “Well Done!”

'Usain Bolt' happy after completing a sponsored mile

‘Usain Bolt’ happy after completing a sponsored mile

© Suzy Rigg

2012 in review


The WordPress.com stats helper monkeys prepared a 2012 annual report for this blog.

Here’s an excerpt:

4,329 films were submitted to the 2012 Cannes Film Festival. This blog had 25,000 views in 2012. If each view were a film, this blog would power 6 Film Festivals

Click here to see the complete report.

100 years young: An Elder Speaks


It has taken me a while to load this video. Firstly I cringe when I hear myself speak.

Secondly, I remember how much I miss my granddad for his wise words and wicked sense of humour.

He had a knack of delivering an important message, with a twinkle in his eye whilst making a gentle, humourous dig.

It’s not easy being a parent and although we all use excuses about time, money, ‘society’ other people’s children… his message is startlingly clear and up-to-minute.

Parents need to parent.  Simple! How we behave, speak to other adults, speak to our children, their teachers, our parents, our children’s friends.  This early modelling cannot and should not be underestimated in terms of the massive impact we have on our children’s development. Massive.

The demands on our time are relentless:  jobs, other children, elderly parents,  husbands, ex-wives, yoga classes, the weekly shop but those little people who live with us, look like us and love us (most of the time) require consistent attention and interaction.

I know, no one said it was easy. But this reminder from a man who lived to see his children, grandchildren and great-grandchildren grow up and thrive, carries some potent words and reminders for us all :)

Suzy Rigg

Interview techniques


Skimming through my Twitter feed, I spotted a post entitled ‘How to act in an interview’ which sounded helpful enough but something jarred with me – aha – it was the word ‘act’.  As a career girl of some years (!) I have sucked up quite a few interview hours myself and thought I ought to do you the favour of passing this on, because (sorry to boast) I have a fairly good hit rate!

So, pens at the ready?

Conversation Between Friends talks about job interviews

1. DO NOT ACT.

Unless you are going for a drama audition and for tips on that you need to research elsewhere.. try Mark Summers Casting  But assuming you are going for a corporate position, say in an agency, corporate business,  finance sector, retail etc, it is not about playing a part, it is about being yourself. This is so important and I will explain why. Most jobs, in whatever sector you are interested in, are time-consuming, energy absorbing, exacting, demanding and occasionally enjoyable. Most people usually spend more time with their work colleagues than they do with their families. Read that last sentence again!  So, if you have acted yourself into a financial role, demonstrating your aptitude for figures and your love of spreadsheets in order to get a job and that isn’t really you ~ you are going to hate your job and probably struggle at it. OR, if you have borrowed your fashionista friend’s Vivienne Westwood shirt to wow the interviewers at an up-and-coming retail chain, when your usual style is more quiet and laid back, again, it will jar with your personality, eventually draining you. Be true yourself, and truthful to your interviewers: it’s a win/win (Bit of management speak there, who spotted it?)

2. DO YOUR HOMEWORK

Research research research. Find out as much about the company as you can before you step foot into the premises. Even if you are interviewed in a pub (yes, I was for a publishing job and I’ve never worked so hard for a glass of wine!), you need to demonstrate that you understand the company, what they stand for (mission statement) what they believe (Values) and how they intend to achieve their business goals (Vision Statement). Smaller, boutique companies don;t always have that information on their website, but you can still get a feel for the company from the website itself, their Twitter feed, go into their stores and ask staff about the company (a bit of secret shopping is always fun). You may find in doing the research that the companies values are different to your own.  For example if you are a vegan, or passionate about  small furry animals, you may wish to look into a company that does animal testing. Find out, inform yourself, it will give you confidence and help the real you to shine through.

3. ASK QUESTIONS

Like any healthy and dynamic conversation, the interview process should be a two-way (or however many people are interviewing you) street. It shows intelligence and initiative to ask a question or two yourself, either about the role or the company or anything else related to your fulfilling the position. This shows you are really listening and thinking, two excellent skills in a potential employee!

4. THE COMPETITIVE EDGE

The job market is competitive, but let’s not lose sight of the fact there has always  been competition for the jammiest jobs. The ones with perks like foreign travel, interviewing celebrities, free tickets and passes to gigs, shows, discounted clothes..you get the idea. Suffice to say, if a position is interesting, exciting, challenging with good perks, you will be slugging it out with the job market’s  finest. A lot of employers now ask for a presentation of some description to test skills, confidence, application of knowledge, creativity, problem solving, the works. This is where you can let your personality shine, and if you put energy and time into this, this preparation will come across as professionalism and confidence on interview day.

These are just some of my edited highlights, of course there is a lot more to consider including getting to the interview in plenty of time, knowing how to calm yourself when your heart is hammering in your chest, but I wanted to keep it simple and so should you.

Here’s my executive interview summary: ‘Prepare to be your best self.’

Best of luck :)

© Suzy Rigg

Body Brushing


Nothing complicated here.

Just a simple solution if you are feeling a bit tired, sluggish, run down or feel a cold coming on, or all of the above.

Body Brushing

Body brushing is a DIY health treatment that you can do at home with simple tools: long handled brush (loofah) and possibly a smaller brush with small massage like nodules. The brush is used to sweep along your body from feet up the legs, from hands upwards to the top of the arms. You can do a body brush treatment yourself, but it’s always easier if there is someone else that can brush your back. It’s important to do the whole body to get the full benefits from the treatment.

The only ‘technical’ thing to remember is to brush firmly but gently and all strokes must be towards the direction of the heart or the lymph nodes.

Have a look at this diagram if you are unsure:

There are a host of benefits:

  • Improved circulation
  • Improved elimination of toxins
  • Helps to slough away dead cells
  • Leaves you feeling refreshed and invigorated

It’s a great treatment that can be done for little cost at home, saving your pennies for the important luxuries. Add you own in here!

According to the Bank of England and the CEO of Sainsbury’s the economic squeeze is going to be around for a little while yet, so I plan to post some more simple health treatments you can do at home that won’t break the bank.

© Suzy Rigg