Happy New Year Everyone!
I thought it might be nice to answer some new year questions to reflect on 2020 so here we go! What went well this year? Making the transition to online teaching. This was new territory for me but I fully branched out and tried all sort of new things like teaching on Skype and zoom, writing a course on Udemy and building a following on my YouTube channels. What did not go well? Gigging… understandably… What do I want to do differently?
Now this is a big, ongoing challenge for me but I want to work on my knee-jerk reaction to problems. I’m not the best person in a crisis, I’m not even particularly good at calling for help so working on how I react to difficulties is something I’d like to work on. When did I feel my most exhausted and drained? Probably that run up to Christmas… I just felt I had no time to make videos, tab and teach and my online world was taking over my life, leaving no time for anything else… time management is also one of my goals! What have I learned? Tonnes!
Mostly a lot about my back and what it needs in order to heal (I am still suffering from Sciatica but no where near as much as I was, Vlog 2 coming up on my Roseanna Ball YouTube channel in the next few weeks) and in general I’ve learnt that self care is so much more than just moisturising your legs once a month… So there you go, just a short but sweet reflection on where I am and where I’m going! Health and Happiness for 2021 and love to you and yours x Rose
I would never consider myself a political person before Covid, frankly I always felt like I knew too little to have much of an opinion, but lately I have felt a need to share my thoughts. Why? Well I guess I'm angry, like a lot of people, and sadly I suppose that's where it starts.
I don't want to rabbit on and on but I do want to document my opinion of how the Government is treating the Arts. I can assure you I've worked in other sectors and I'm not oblivious to the hierarchal needs of society - obviously certain industries have to come first in order for our nation to survive - but I am frustrated with this Government's complete lack of respect for certain sectors.
For me their behaviour mirrors a bully in a school playground making you do something humiliating just so you can have your belongings back. That is exactly how I felt when I saw that Live Venues have to praise the Government on all of their social media platforms in order to receive funding. There are several hashtags I've seen but definitely #hereforculture is one they are using more and more. So if you see any typically anti-establishment folk suddenly being in praise of the Government you now know why!
I have also seen a great disparity in venues who receive funding. Those in the most need - larger, been shut for months, in my opinion serve the community the most - seem to have received a great deal less in grants than their peers which I find rather suspicious.
Finally I shall briefly talk about that insulting advert featuring Fatima the ballerina. I will say that the prime ministers official spokes person did say the ad was 'inappropriate' however if you felt that way when you saw it why on earth would you ever let it see the light of day? Why is it all over the internet? Surely in that conference where ministers and graphic designers sat down and discussed possible images and designs for the retrain campaign the PM or his representative would have raised their hand to say, "we can't use that, it's inappropriate." The slogan is good, I'm with them there but how dare they? What do they think we've all been doing for the last 7 months? I can tell you now I have attended webinars to train up on social media, I have expanded into online tutoring, I have expanded heavily into youtube... I have not been stagnant, I have not been on JSA and I have stayed afloat. I am incredibly lucky, not everyone was able to but I worked incredibly hard and made myself ill with anxiety and sciatica because of it.
These are unprecedented times but a little respect goes a long way.
I'll stop there - I can already hear your sigh of relief haha! If you got this far thank you and also my apologies, I needed to vent on a platform that didn't have a word limit!
Thank you for hearing me, thank you immensely for your support and thank you for everything you do.
Take extra special care of yourselves
*Well we are living in a video world and I am a video girl*
Okay so the syllables aren't quite right but as I sat down to write this entry that was the first thing that sprang to mind. We truly are living online at the moment and my only means of reaching my audience, friends and family is through video. Video may have killed the radio star but it saved the musician!
I truly am thanking my lucky stars for the fact that I can still perform - facebook Live, may even dabble with youtube live soon - I can still teach - Skype, facebook messenger, zoom - and I can still share my music with you all - thank you youtube. It's been a tumultuous time, a real rollercoaster of emotions. One minute I'm feeling like I'm getting somewhere, advancing in technology and its understanding (buying a USB hub was a highlight) and the next I feel left behind (trying to program drums on logic pro). However in this time of extreme trial-by-fire learning there have been some giant leaps forward. My whole office space has been transformed and I know my entire practice will never be the same again.
My youtube channels will also never been the same, every week I get more and more subscribers to my Rhythm Ro Music Tutor hub - this continues to amaze me - and even my long neglected Roseanna Ball channel has been given a new lease of life. It's become part of my weekly routine to try and get a new video up on both and I'm really enjoying making my 'wildlife music videos' (check out the playlist on the Roseanna Ball channel). Indeed it will be weird to stop... will I stop? Right at the beginning of this when I was only four videos in Ben asked how long I was going to do them for. I have no idea is the answer, as long as they're needed? And not just by me, I've really enjoyed reading comments like, 'this brightened my day.' That's what it's all about.
I feel like we're nearing the end of lockdown in my small little community and that brings with it lots of questions, chiefly what is normal now? I look forward to finding out!
Take care everybody and I hope to see you all again soon x
It has been a long week of it, and not just for me but for a lot of people. Lots of us small business owners are taking a deep breath before we plunge back into seeing people face to face next week; I think we've all had our reservations. It's meant I've been printing a lot - no more sharing sheets and screens - and I've been measuring and anti-bac wiping a lot too. I even tried my hand at a DIY mask (which nearly suffocated me...oh well!). But all of this I can take, this self employed life is a life I chose and am proud of and it's taken a lot of work. YouTube's cute little congratulatory email kind of verified that for me this week when I hit 500 subscribers on my tutoring channel - an aim Ben has had in mind for me for a while but it still felt a bit like Christmas when the email came in. It's strange to put a number on it, 500 youtubers appreciate what I do and that's a nice feeling and enough motivation for those days, that have been coming a lot this week, where I'm struggling to stay focused.
Well the complaint that arose 3 weeks ago, that I thought was fatigue, has progressed and tried to claim my right leg for its own. On Friday, after one online lesson, I was in too much pain to continue sitting to lesson plan. A conversation with Ben later I realised I'd talked myself into calling the Dr - oh the guilt that came with that - but they were kind and understanding and got me straight in that afternoon to check I wasn't going fully numb.
Fast forward a day or two and I guess I've had to learn some hard truths. I can't continue to use my desk the way I have and I can't be sat at it for hours and hours planning. Sounds so obvious I know but for some reason -maybe the workaholic in me - I just didn't understand why I was in so much pain until I was teaching and my leg went numb. Woops. So I've done my research and ordered a lumbar support, monitor raisers and a foot rest to try and get myself at the correct position for desk work and I have discovered the joys of an exercise ball. It was just sat gathering dust and now it is propelling me forward into recovery. I love it. I am going to attempt to make it a regular part of my working week in-between lessons and tasks.
What a week it has been! A week of highs and lows and ultimately discovery.
I hope you guys are taking care of yourselves in this desk life, video-call time. Support yourself and be kind to your body x
Love you all
Breathe in...breathe out. Forward fold, halfway lift, breathe in, feel the stretch in the back body and breathe out. I think Yoga with Adriene is keeping a lot us sane in this difficult time, I learnt so much from her 30 day yoga challenge in January but now I feel she's even more vital to keeping my mental focus, and fitness, in check. So! I hope you join me in taking a slow, deep breath......and letting it all go :-)
Okay folks so we're not going to dwell on Covid-19, we're not going to worry about it, we're going to improvise, adapt and overcome - as my good friend says. Last week was particularly challenging and yes, at times, quite frightening. I was facing the unknown and losing work so fast it felt like someone was pulling the rug out from beneath me but then the sun came out, my camera AND the internet got fixed and suddenly there were options.
I took to instagram - realised I'd been using it wrong haha - and I learnt from my peers. There are so many musicians and tutors adapting to the situation and learning how to teach and survive through skype, I could not be more grateful to the developers of that life saving app! So here we are after a very sunny weekend of soaking up rays and inspiration and I have now taught two lessons online and am feeling hopeful that my business will survive. I feel creative and full of ideas on how to move forward and will absolutely be posting more videos to my long neglected Roseanna Ball youtube channel. I shared a video on there on Saturday of me covering Jim Reeves' Welcome to my world which seems to be raising the morale of my local community and I am so incredibly grateful for the donation I recieved through my paypal.me link on the video in appreciation. I don't make any money through youtube and it takes a lot of time to produce videos so this made my day! I update my Rhythm Ro Music Tutor channel regularly so I think I'll be adding the link as standard to all future videos. Improvise, adapt, overcome. Thank you Phil, thank you Jo.
I have learned a lot, I think we all have, and for an introvert (no really) I've truly learnt the value of conversation and company. I used to be terrified of picking up the phone - Ben says it's an actual phobia - but now I'm excited if I get a video call from a friend. This crisis has forced us all into new territory and although change is often uncomfortable it is often necessary and ultimately we endure and learn from it.
We can get through this, I love you all x
Stay healthy and I shall see you all again soon!