I really want to share my life story with you, I get quite a lot of questions and since launching my book, landing lead roles in the cinemas in the Uae, speaking on stages this year, a few people ask me questions and want to know a bit more about how it all started, the good the bad and the ugly!
Sometimes we can compare our lives to others and not really understand them as a person or what they went through to get to who they are.
This year I’m really proud of the release of my film Wasalna Well B’adna in the cinemas in the UAE and to have also been busy filming 2 more films that will be released in cinemas UAE later this year, as well as the launch of my book “Words That Will Make You Believe In Yourself” that came #1 on Amazon. Also with the launch of my academy, You Can Believe In Yourself websites that provides online workshops and masterminds using positive psychology and step by step process that help people follow their dreams, is really taking off and I’m so happy to be able to give back. 10% of all membership fees are going towards providing for teachers in Kenya.
A lot of people ask me, why did I move to Dubai and why is the. message of believing in yourself so important to me?
The opportunity to move to Dubai came in December 2014, a this time, this was my only opportunity, I really didn’t have a clue what I wanted to do with my life, so I decided to take a chance – flights and apartment was included and a week later or so, I packed my bags , the company sent me the flight ticket and I took the chance. I had never moved away from home before and always been a home bird so I didn’t think I would last long, I planned to stay for maximum 3 months, to gain some experience and to learn more about life about myself and then move back to the UK. At this point, I know I couldn’t do anything if I didn’t believe in myself or have the confidence to do it, so I had to take myself out of my comfort zone.
All I really wanted to know was what my life purpose was, because I really had this huge passion, desire and curiosity for life, but I had no self belief or confidence which clouded my mind and vision of who I was and what was possible for me.
At this point, I really didn’t know a lot about the world or really understood how people worked so you could say I have been through a lot of life lessons in a short period of time.
I originally thought I was moving to Dubai for an IT job, but when I landed it didn’t quite work out like that. (Life lesson #1 double check your contract before you sign your life away!) and I ended up working as a waitress in a restaurant. But I believe there are no mistakes in life and I am very grateful this experience happened, I needed it! At the time, I was SO shy, so having to speak to people from all around the world each day, deal with reservations, bookings, approach people, was so uncomfortable for me. And because this was not what I moved here for, it kept me in Dubai because I was so determined not to quit and move home. Also, the long 13 hour days 6x a week really set me up and have give me a strong stamina for all my future work and projects.
How did I get into Acting?
All through my child hood and early teens, performing and stage was just my life and was apart of who I was, I never saw my life be any different.
My Mum and Dad always taught me how important school and education was, so I really took it serious and thought all my interests and passions were not normal and I was actually bullied for them so I felt embarassed. I really didn’t enjoy school at all. I was told how important it was to go to University and I remember being advised to take academic subjects rather than music, art and drama which was what I wanted to choose, so I didn’t choose these as I thought that maybe I wasn’t good enough to pursue a career in the arts anymore, even from a young age, I always took my life very precious so I really absorbed and didn’t question any guidance I received.
So at this point was when my dreams and doubts started to happen because I wasn’t doing what I loved to do at all anymore and I was struggling which made me feel like a failure even more. I managed to just pass my A-Levels and then I went to Uni a year later than my friends because I had no idea what to do. I then enrolled in Uni last minute and decided to do IT. I thought maybe this was my life purpose because I actually set up Pretty-Secrets.Net when I was 13 and managed to earn a lot of income from Google Ads. But I slowly started to realize the IT industry wasn’t for me, but I was determined not to quit and just managed to pass with a 2:1 degree, literally scraped it (I really can’t come round and fix your computer). This time of my life was a really dark place for me and during this time I was also in an abusive relationship for 4 years which also damaged my confidence and I really just wanted to hide away from the world.
During Uni, to earn extra money I started working at Hollyoaks the TV show as it was right by my house. I never thought about acting or anything at this time and I was only an extra and I used to hide away from the camera, I didn’t want to be seen it was just really convenient and quite good money at the time. I never thought it was possible for me to go to an acting school as I thought I was too old and that opportunity has passed, but when I was doing Hollyoaks, people were talking about open auditions for David Johnson Drama School but they were saying about how tough it was and that so many people left after 2 weeks. At the time, it just so happened I was reading “The Psychology of Winning” by Denis Waitley, who said to write down a list of all the things you loved to do as a child and to start doing them. As I was really depressed and stuck in a rut, I thought I would just try something new and step out of my hole and audition for David Johnson Drama. I got into the School, and these acting classes actually really saved me during this time, I didn’t go with the hope of being an actress, I was learning so much about myself, about life and about film and it really was my escapism.
I went for 2 years and I didn’t miss a class, partly because I was too scared not to. Actually if you did miss a class, David Johnson would kick you out the school! I remember David shouting at me infront of everyone that my only problem was that I didn’t believe in myself. That day was a life changer for me, I remember traveling home after a long 17 hour day so frustrated and upset and Uni was like torture too. I didn’t believe in myself and I didn’t know how to. I remember this was one of the lowest points in my life and scariest, but that was the day I decided to change forever.
I remember writing down, I have NO choice but to believe in myself, its either believe in myself or stay the same forever and I actually hated where my life was at that time and once I started to expand my mind and become absorbed with learning and knowledge, it made me see so clearly that you really cannot have a positive life surrounded by negative minds who put you down. Do you know how harder that makes your life!?
The only reason I left the acting school was to move to Dubai. So when I moved to Dubai, of course I still wasn’t doing that I loved because I didn’t know what I could even do, I didn’t even know what I was good at anymore or what I even wanted. And after I got out of my comfort zone, I really loved working around people and being surrounded by so many different people and talking to people all day in the restaurant, I couldn’t think of anything worse than being locked up in an office. But I automatically looked for acting lessons again, to escape the reality I was in because I still felt stuck and frustrated and had all this fire in my belly and I just couldn’t see how my life would pan out.
All I was doing in my spare time, before work, during work, after work was studying none stop about how our minds work, how you believe in yourself and how you change your life. It actually become my passion and I would love sharing everything I was learning with all the people around me. Even during the 13 hour days not including the 1 hour travel, everyone used to say how positive I was, but it was my choice to be positive, because I was choosing what to focus on.
When I was asking around for advice on good acting classes in Dubai, customers and people who lived in the UAE, 100% of the people told me that there were no acting opportunities in Dubai and the acting schools are not good and if I wanted do stuff like that I should move to London or LA. But the thing was, I still didn’t know how and I came all this way to Dubai I didn’t want to leave with nothing to show for it. So I found some myself and attended anyway just because I love studying scripts and learning about life through the art.
I did my first ever performance a couple of months later in the Courtyard Playhouse and I performed a piece from Chicago. I felt SO alive. The feeling of performing on a stage live, was the best feeling and I hadn’t had this feeling since I was young. After the performance, so many writers and directors told me they loved my performance and I started to hear about so many different auditions and productions in Dubai.
I ended up getting signed to a talent agent and they started sending me to auditions. Something inside me just couldn’t let me miss any of them because I didn’t want to miss out on any opportunity. I didn’t get any paid acting work for 10 months and I didn’t really expect to either. Then things started to change and I ended up performing as the queen of hearts with CeLo Green and landing lead roles in Music Videos with artists such as Diana Haddad. I found it really amazing that I could get paid to do something I found really fun that didn’t feel like work in one day more than the whole month.
Through out this whole journey, I developed good habits each day, expanding my mind, practicing principles of self belief and used them before any circumstance I was in.
Although I had developed a lot, I still wasn’t where I wanted to be and I wanted to move home so many times but more and more opportunities kept coming up that I wanted to explore.
I was grateful to work with HSBC on their message to “Support Human Ambition” because this topic was something I was continuously spreading and sharing on my blog and Instagram Posts. It was my first experience of getting flew to a different country and really getting paid to do something I love and have an incredible experience. I was still working full time at the time doing Marking and Branding for a couple of brands, so either way I was enjoying both of my works. I was actually working none stop at this point as I was working in an office 6x a week and in the evenings and on my day off on the Saturday I was getting booked for shoots.
In February 2017, life took an unexpected twist, I hadn’t been home for a year because its such a long story, but I really missed home and my Mum and Dad, so I took a week off to visit. When I got home I found out my Dad had cancer, then all of a sudden within a few days of me being home, they told me he had 3 days to live. 3 f*king days. I couldn’t believe it. I cancelled my flight back to Dubai and stayed with him in the hospital. Each day was very scary because I was expecting it to happen at any given moment. He did end up living for another 7 weeks. I came back to Dubai because I had already been booked for a film that we were meant to shoot, I was going shoot that and come straight back but as I got back he passed away. This was such a huge life changer for me as It really made my question life and it made me more determined than ever to make something of my life whilst I still have the chance and even more so to make my Dad proud.
In June 2017, I attended an inspiring Entrepreneur event by someone called JT Foxx. Sometimes all we need is one person, one idea and one word to change our perspective. Seeing this man speak really changed something within me and seeing how many risks he has took in his life inspired me to do the same. I decided to stop doing anything that I didn’t want to do and I took a risk to work for myself and invest in his coaching. Since then I have been a full time entrepreneur and since I took the risk of living in uncertainty, life has rewarded me. I booked a 3 month contract touring the whole UAE, presenting in over 25 different schools a show teaching children how to eat healthy. Then I landed another role which enabled me to get to see even more of the beautiful UAE. It was a film about a British girl who comes to the UAE to stay with her husbands family, although they can’t really understand each other, they communicate through love and it really showcases that we can all love and welcome each other into our lives and family no matter what culture or religion you are. We are all the same. Since the film was in the Cinema, I have been scouted for more movies since and lived in Abu Dhabi for one month for another lead in an Action film. I really do love the UAE, I find it so inspiring and I learn so much and have made friends with people from all over the world and I am trying to learn different languages. Thats the beauty of the UAE, there are over 216 different nationalities here and the UAE makes everyone feel welcome.
It makes me so mad that I wasted so many years of my life not believing in myself and doubting my dreams and natural interests, life really doesn’t have to be torture and you can really make a living from doing something that you love. I really do know the pain of feeling like you don’t belong and being stuck within yourself and THAT is the reason why I am so passionate about teaching people the principles and research I have used in my own life to over come self belief and doubt. There is enough room for everyone to follow their dreams and we have all been put here for a reason. So whilst I have been on this journey of self discovery, I want to give everything that I know to anyone else who feels the same way as I do. Every single thing I do and have tried and tested is available on www.youcanbelieveinyourself.com. I am the same person as I always was, the only difference was that I learnt how to Believe in myself and opportunities started to come. Self Belief is the 1st step to anything and is something you can develop no matter how far away you drift. Life is so so precious do not waste a single moment thinking you can’t do something that you aren’t good enough. We do not get a second chance at life, risk it all to express everything that is in your heart.