As some of you may know it is International Day for the Elimination of Racial Discrimination . This inspired me to write this blog about diversity in the equestrian world.
When I tell people I enjoy going horse riding some are very surprised not just by the fact I ride and have a disability but also because of the colour of my skin. People sometimes tell me “ I didn’t realise people of your ethnicity took part in this sport”.
They get even more confused when they see me with my family. I am Indian but at 3 months old I was adopted by a English couple who lived in India. They then had a biological daughter so people get confused when I say “and this is my younger sister”. Over the years I’ve had people stare at me when I’m out with my family in public. Sometimes I forget that I’m a different ethnicity from my family to me it’s my normal!
The equestrian world is really lacking in diversity . I think a big aspect of why this is the cause is because of how low the awareness in this sport. People in the past have said and made comments that they thought this sport is not a sport for some like me which really isn’t the case.
We need more role models in the sport. We need someone who is relatable to people. If people see someone from the same background or similar they feel they can relate to that person. To help show how this sport isn’t just for one type of person we need to change perceptions.
I believe Riding for the Disabled challenges perceptions constantly because when I talk to people about the fact I ride with the RDA many people haven’t actually heard of this amazing charity. So I love telling them how special, valuable and life changing it is!
When people see someone like me. They can see that I can ride. I want to help encourage others to give this sport a try despite society’s labels and their are others like me taking part in the sport. This helps to break down the barriers this sport has.
One person breaking down these barriers now is Reece McCook, founder of online campaign Ride Out Racism.
Everyone should feel that it is possible for them to join and achieve great things in this sport. We need to inspire each other to join and participate in this sport and in our community. You never know who could be the top riders of our future let’s break down these barriers together, this sport is for everyone!
So with all this lockdown stuff my mood has been a bit of a up and down rollercoaster ride. Over the years, I’ve developed my “mental health toolkit.” When I notice things are going down hill here are some things that give me great comfort.
I enjoy going for walks with my dog Mango especially in the nice weather. With lockdown I have found that I’m on the screen for a much long time. However if I was at college I would be doing dance classes and moving around a lot more. I find taking Mango on walks helps me not only get exercise and fresh air but helps with clearing my head and staying grounded. Lockdown has really made me realise how doing exercise really does help me to lift my mood back up when I’m feeling low. Going on walks helps me cope with my anxiety I find if I’m not doing much exercise my worries can build up more causing me to worry and not wanting to do much.
Just Watching The Telly
When I’m feeling low I can find comfort in watching something. As much as I love watching new shows theirs nothing better than rewatching shows that you love. When I feel low I find my concentration levels are a bit all over the place and I can’t focus. When this happens I find it hard to read a book. Which is why watching a TV show I’ve watched before is so good. It’s like I can finally rest and let go giving my head time to breathe. Like self care and love for my head. Some of the TV shows I love watching repeatedly are:
Once Upon A Time
When my head feels all over the place one thing I like to do is write down and make a list of things I need to or want to do and achieve in the day. Writing it down helps me visual see what my head is trying to tell me at one hundred miles an hour.
When I’m feeling low self care is very important sometimes you don’t feel like doing lots of things. Here are some quick, simple and kind things you could do on a down day that don’t take very long.
Put some of your favourite lipstick or lipgloss on
Make yourself a nice hot drink for example a cup of tea or hot chocolate
But some of your favourite body butter/ lotion on
Put on some nice jewellery for example a pair of small shiny earrings .
When people say look forward it isn’t always about making your career plan for the next 5 years it can also be about daily, weekly things to look forward to. I try not to be hard on myself and but pressure on anything as things can change last minute! However having something positive to look forward to can really help me to try and stay in a more positive headspace. For example setting a day up to meet up with friends on FaceTime or House Party, Doing extra activities such a drama with my drama club on zoom, to buying something nice to eat that I can look forward to eating later in the week like a cheesecake.
After months of doing studying online due to Lockdown. The thought of returning to education which isn’t on a screen may feel a little daunting. Here are some of my top tips on how to make this transitioning a little bit smoother .
A New Routine
Many students all over the country will have to start doing COVID tests in school and colleges. As someone with anxiety I know that timetable changes to my day can set me off to feel extremely anxious and I may have panic attacks. To help you overcome this you could maybe write out your time table in a more visual way using lots of different colours and pictures. Or you could have a little notebook full of little affirmations you can look at whilst your waiting to do your test. Many schools and colleges have created videos to show students what the new process will be like. If they haven’t shown you don’t be afraid to ask your teacher as they may have other resources available for you to you which you might find useful.
This next tip might seem a bit silly but when you get up ready for the day make sure you have breakfast this could be some toast, a fruit smoothie or some cereal. If your stuck on what to have I recommend looking at Pinterest they have some really yummy, healthy, breakfast ideas to help kick start your day.
Did you know:
1. Eating breakfast can help you with your memory for the day and your attention span will be a lot better compared to days we’re you don’t have breakfast
2. Eating breakfast can help you have a more positive outlook on your day.
3. People who eat breakfast regularly are less likely to become obese. Their is still a lot of research going into why this may be. One idea is that eating breakfast helps to prevent large fluctuations in your blood glucose levels, helping you control your appetite.
Things To Have In Your Bag
Recently I was talking to one of my friends about returning to education and how they felt about it. They were feeling very worried and scared because their OCD has worsened through the pandemic and they are becoming more and more scared to touch anything or go out.
To help with returning to education they suggested always make sure you have a little bottle of hand sanitiser with you. As well as this they also have stress balls and fidget spinners with them to help them to control intrusive thoughts.
Another tip I have that may seem obvious is talk to someone. You never know you could be helping them too. They might feel the same and it’s nice to feel your not alone. You could speak to a family member, friend, teacher anymore who makes you feel safe.
Be Kind To Yourself
My final tip is remember to be kind to yourself. The transitioning from working from home on our screens to being back having to get ready to the day ahead , catching the bus so your not late for school. Our whole routine is changing. Make sure you do little things just for yourself and give yourself the attention you give to others. This could be watching your favourite TV show, reading a book, having a nice bubble bath. Give yourself breaks enjoy the outside. You could sit in the garden or go on a short walk with your dog. Ground yourself be in the moment. It doesn’t matter what you’re meant to do or shouldn’t have done. Just enjoy the here and now nothing else matters.
I hope some of this helped and I wish you all the very best of luck with going back to school. Sending all positive vibes. If you need any more support I have listed a couple of websites that you may find helpful.
I am so excited to announce that I am now starting a whole new series on my YouTube Channel reading stories for children. I have decided to call it Bryony Goes Bananas With Bedtime Stories
As some of you may know I grew up with books and they are still a massive part of my life now.
This series will be available on my defeatingdisability YouTube Channel from tomorrow!
I came up with the idea to create this as over the past few months I have spoken to children and parents about how they can make the reading experience better for their children as they need more help with reading due to their disabilities. Many Parents told me that their kids wanted to read stories just like their friends could but they found this really hard and found it embarrassing to tell friends their parents still have to read for them.
So this is when I came up with the idea to create Bryony Goes Bananas With Bedtime Stories. In each video I will be reading a Children’s storybook with pictures so that you can follow along to and we can read together. In each video their will also be main words that come up to help children to communicate and learn words.
I am so excited to be starting this and to be growing into new areas to help children discover the enjoy that books give.
The books I will be reading may also be good to watch and listen if you are learning English too as an example.
My first ever episode for this series on my YouTube Channel will be up before 6pm tomorrow. The first book to kick off this amazing series is one of my all time favourites, The Gruffalo by Julia Donaldson.
If you’ve got the book I’d love for you to read along with me.
2020 was the year of change for everyone around the world. From students doing lessons online to having meetings on zoom calls and probably spending more time in lounge wear than we thought we would. The pandemic flipped our daily routines upside down and everything we thought we knew out the window.
I would say I like to have a routine as much as possible as this helps me to manage my anxiety better. The unknown can cause me to feel a lot more anxious, have more seizures and me feel scared of doing daily activities compared to before the pandemic. I might have taken simple tasks for granted for example being able to walk around college to get to class.
I do like doing things that aren’t planned as such but if I can plan it I feel more prepared and relaxed.
As plans changed daily with new lockdown rules. I had to learn to adapt and come up with coping strategies this was hard at times. To be honest it still is now after all of us living with the unknown for quite a few more months.
However from having to take each day as it comes I have learned more about being present being in the here and now. I have also been learning to embrace the little things that bring joy to me everyday . For example having cuddles with my cats or watching a film on Netflix with the family. Maybe without this whole lockdown COVID stuff I wouldn’t have seen or appreciated the small things that make me smile and help me to be positive on a daily basis.
Another thing 2020 taught me was to try and stop worrying about things that needed to be done with a longer time frame. For example I would want to get my college work handed in way before the deadline so I could tick it off my to do list. I like to do lists as it helps me to organise my thoughts. Once everything was done I could then go and do things I enjoy like messaging friends. I sometimes didn’t listen to my body and would fight it as I wanted to carry on but I was tired. Through the pandemic I have tried to not rush doing work as slow and steady wins the race. This has really helped me with my own self care as I am now able to feel comfortable and not guilt for taking a couple of breaks and I have then been able to do better work as a result and I feel calmer with knowing my due dates for assignments.
Due to the pandemic a lot of my after college activities have been online and through social media I have been able to find new projects and groups to get involved with which I may have not found if I didn’t have more time to look for new activities to do as my routine wouldn’t of had the time available. So 2020 definitely taught me about embracing new activities, trying new things and learning new skills.
All through last year was definitely a year no one could have predicted . We definitely saw more kindness and appreciation for one another from family, to friends and from strangers.
Happy New Year! May 2021 be the year of light , adventure and kindness 💜.
Well this year has definitely been different for all of us due to COVID 19. I haven’t been doing posts on here for a while as I am finding it a bit hard at the moment with anxiety due to COVID.
However I was thinking about all the things I have done and achieved despite COVID and one things for sure I wouldn’t have done them without support from everyone around me and you guys my little online defeatingdisability family. So Thank You!
So as we are nearing the end of this year…. eeek
I thought I would share with you guys some of my top highlights from this year. So in no particular order:
This year we welcomed two new kittens to our family. Kiwi a female tabby and Otis a male black kitty cat. We got them from one of our local cat rescue centres. These two were found in a cardboard box in a car park with two others. Otis can’t stop growing and Kiwi likes to play by her own rules. Our whippet called Mango is loving having two new friends.
Earlier this year I got myself an agent for acting . The agency I am with is iNCLUSIVE Talent. They represented disabled and able bodied actors You can checkout their website here: https://www.inclusivetalent.co.uk/bryony-moss
This year I also got some coloured headshots done. I loved working with Anna she is so friendly and made me feel so comfortable. I also loved the way she uses natural light. If you are looking to get new headshots done I would highly recommend her. You can checkout her website at: https://www.annahullphotography.com
This year I started doing private horse riding lessons and I am loving them. I recently got to be apart of doing a demonstration of a lesson for the local MP Joy Morrissey.
It’s that time of year again. September has arrived which only means one thing it’s the new academic year. You might be going into a new year at school or starting college or even going to university.
Even though I am 22 now I am starting my Level 3 Course in Performing Arts this year at college. Through the years of being in education I have developed my own top tips on how I like to get ready for the new academic year and I thought what better way to share them with you by writing a blog post all about it.
Cleaning out the junk and starting fresh
1. So my first tip is to have a clean out of any old work you may still have but don’t actually need. You may have a desk you use to work and the draw is just filled with rubbish. When sorting out my draw I like to create piles of things I need to keep, things I want to keep and things I can throw out. For example you may have a maths book you’ve finished but you want to keep it because it maybe handy for maths revision if you are doing maths again. Where as you don’t need to keep pens that don’t work anymore.
2. Next I like to go onto my laptop and get rid of anything I don’t need anymore related to my education. For example you may have folders you have created and your not doing that topic anymore and you won’t find those notes useful so it can go. Helping you to clear your mind and organise yourself for work that is now the new important.
3. Another thing I like to do is change my computer background at the start of every academic year. I enjoy going onto Pinterest and finding quotes that speak to me and will help me to stay motivated. Sometimes I’ll just have one quote and other times I like to make a collage of quotes for me to see.
4. To help me get to my most important and most used websites I use for college work I create bookmarks. I then like to go through my bookmarks to see if I need to add any new ones and also to get rid of ones I don’t need to make my web searching more efficient.
5.Lastly I like to go through my college email and get rid of all my emails from the following year so that I can start a fresh.
New Year Equals Haul Time
I don’t know about you but one of the things I love about a new academic year is getting a new bag and stationary.
1. I like to go through my pencil case and chuck out any pens and pencils that don’t work anymore. This helps me a lot later when I am working and taking notes quickly in class as I know all the pens in my pencil case work.
2. I really enjoy writing in different coloured pens and colour coding my work as well as making it nice to look at when reading. If you like doing this to I recommend getting yourself a pack of gel pens. You can buy gel pens for cheap prices at shops such as The Works and on Amazon.
3. If you are struggling to find a new bag that is still really cute and pretty but not to expensive I recommend buying a bag from Primark. I used to love going to Primark to find a new school bag. If you want to spend a bit more on a bag I highly recommend checking out TK Maxx.
4. If I’m in need of a new notebook that is really cute I love to checkout notebooks from Paperchase.
Goals, Goals, Goals
Like at the beginning of the new year we like making new year resolutions. I like to create my own education goals at the beginning of every academic year. It doesn’t matter how big or small they are. I just like doing them to help me see later on in the year how far I have come.
For example your goals could be:
1. To try a new dish you can buy from the cafeteria
2. To sit next to someone in your class you don’t know/ don’t know very well
3. To organise myself more so that I am not so late to class
4. To make sure I hand in my work on the given deadline
5. Set an alarm on my phone for when I need to get up so I’m not rushing and stressing about missing the bus
Create A New Routine
So with everything that’s been going on recently our daily routines have changed massively. To help me create and get into my new routine here are some things I do that you might feel helpful
1. I like to get myself a big whiteboard and section it into seven days. I then like to write the day of the week at the top. With the place and time I need to be somewhere. I like having this whiteboard on my bedroom wall because when I wake up I can clearly see what I’ve got planned for the day.
2. I also like to get myself a new diary that I can carry in with me in my bag. I find this useful as I can write down when things like assessments need to be done by, or when a trip is or if I need to come in an extra day for rehearsals. I also like to colour code my notes so that it is easy to understand if I am running late.
3. Before I leave the house every morning it is really important that I am awake and energised for the day ahead as I am an Performing Arts Student. This means I need to have breakfast before I leave. I will be doing a quick breakfast idea blog post soon.
4. It’s really important that you create some down time for yourself. Self care is just as important as doing coursework or revising for a test. You could watch some TV when you get back home or maybe you want to tryout a face mask you brought from Boots. You could go on a short walk to help your head from spinning with all the stuff you’ve had to do that day.
I will be doing a self care ideas blog post soon. So make sure you are following me so that you don’t miss it.
I hope some of these ideas helped you. Please let me know what other things you do to help get yourself ready for the new academic year.
So this year has been a rather strange year with all of the world living with the upside down news of COVID 19. All of our lifestyle has had to change in these uncertain times with us all living with the unknown. Not being able to see our loved ones and the people we care about. To having to wear masks when doing the quick weekly grocery shop.
So I thought I would share with you some small easy ideas on how you can make someone you love and care about feel that little bit more special at the moment.
Whilst in lockdown and not being able to meet up with friends. I have enjoyed having weekly get togethers on Zoom, FaceTime and House Party. If you are missing a relative or friend remember you can always call them up for a quick chat or send them a text . During this difficult period a lot of people don’t have anyone to talk to and can feel very isolated their are charities that you can volunteer for were you get to chat to people who don’t have anyone to talk to. Having a chat to anyone can brighten up their day in more ways than you could possibly think. Here is a link to a list of charities you could get involved with to help people in your local area feel less isolated.
You could make a meal for a neighbour and leave it on their doorstep. Or you could add your neighbours grocery list to your online delivery order if they find it hard to get out and about and don’t have people around them to help. You could give donations of food to your local food bank.
Message on a Pebble
If the love doing anything crafty, you could have a go at painting messages or drawings onto pebbles and stones. You may find some from your garden or maybe you have some pebbles you can paint from a trip to a beach. You could then put them around your local park for people to find whilst they walk their dog. Little words of encouragement can go along way.
Donate to Charity
In this hard time charities need our help more than ever to help the lives of others in the community. Their are lots of charities out their that you could donate to. For example Riding for the Disabled Association, Cancer Research, Action for Children and The Theatre Shed to name a few.
I would love to know all the kind things people have done for you. And what you have done for others over this period. Please leave your comments in the comment box below.
Hannah from Luxury Blush created her very own lockdown tag. When I found out about this I was so excited. I knew I needed to take part! This tag has 11 questions and is just a bit of fun and sure to put a smile on your face.
1. Come On, Own Up…. Did You Stock Pile Anything?
I didn’t stock pile anything so it was a bit of a shock to see loads of empty shelves around. We found it very hard to find flour but now we’ve finally got some!
2. Have You Discovered A New Hobby?
One thing that I have done in lockdown is finally getting tropical fish. I now have two tanks. I have enjoyed creating the interior of the tank, finding out fish facts and of course getting them. Having fish is much more of a hobby than I originally thought from learning about plants, community fish, temperature to name a few.I now do really feel like part of the fish tank community. I don’t know if you could say this was a hobby. But during lockdown I am enjoying making and painting my own rabbit hutch.
3. Where Is The First Place You Will Go Once Restrictions Are 100% Lifted?
I can’t wait to see my friends and finally getting back into the saddle for my Saturday morning ride. I can’t wait to see the amazing horses and ponies, instructors and volunteers because boy have I missed it!
4. Lounge Wear Or Normal Clothes For A Of Isolation?
I would say most of the time I wear my normal clothes as this helps me with having a routine I feel comfortable with. Also I feel that it helps me set up my mind for the day ahead.
5. Have You Been Wearing Makeup Whilst Staying At Home?
Before lockdown I wasn’t wearing makeup everyday. However during lockdown I have enjoyed reading skin care books and trying out new looks. I have found that lockdown has given me the time to let my skin breathe helping me with my complexion.
6. How Many Zoom Quizzes Have You Done? And Importantly, Did You Enjoy Them?
I’ve done a couple of quizzes and I really enjoyed them it was really nice to be able to chat with friends and have a laugh. I’m awful at quizzes.
7. Did You Give Into The Hype And Bake Your Own Banana Bread?
This is something I haven’t done but my mum has been very busy making delicious birthday cakes and treats.
8. Were You Still Ordering Takeaways? If You Did, What Was Your First One?
I don’t really eat many takeaways even before lockdown. However I recently enjoyed stealing a little bit of my sisters Chinese takeaway meal .
9. Has Your Blog / Instagram Content Had To Change Since Lockdown?
I wouldn’t say my content has changed loads on my channels. However being in lockdown has given me lots of opportunities to write guest blog posts for other organisations. Lockdown has also shown me that when everything is 100% ok again that I would love to do more modelling shoots and post these photos on my social media platforms. I want to also work with other creatives from modelling to acting to things I don’t even know about yet!
10. Are You Waiting Until The Hairdressers Re-Open Or Have You Cut / Dyed Your Own Hair?
Right now my hair is a the length I would like however when the hairdressers re-opens I will go and probably have a small trim. Personally I can’t wait till the beauty parlour opens up again so that I can get my eyebrows threaded and waxed!
11. Who Have You Missed Seeing The Most?
This questions hard I’ve missed so many people so this answer maybe quite long. I have missed seeing and meeting up with my close friends. I have missed not going to The Theatre Shed and seeing my Shed family in person. I have missed seeing everyone and the horses and ponies at South Bucks RDA. I have missed working on the farm with friends. And finally I have missed not being able to perform on stage with college friends.
Thank you to all you amazing key workers out there and Thank You for reading. Stay Safe💜