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Plan A, Plan B, Plan XYZ and beyond

2020 has been a year of dashed plans. Whether it’s GCSEs, A-levels, weddings, book launches, celebrations of all sorts. It’s been an uphill struggle, exhausting for everyone, hard to protect our mental health and wellbeing. I’m someone who likes to plan ahead but these days I feel I can’t. I seem to lurch from week to week, just keeping my head above water and sometimes feeling I’m not. We’ve all had to be nimble, flexible, accepting. And I’m not terribly good at those things!

However, as we approach the twilight of this difficult year, I’m trying to keep on track by focusing on the main things ahead. Or at least those parts of my plans that are relevant to you: parents, teachers, PSHE departments, school librarians, event organisers and teenagers themselves. Anyone concerned about young people’s mental health and wellbeing. This list is as much for my benefit as yours!

Calls to action in red!

Now till end December

  • Finishing first draft of 10 WAYS TO BUILD A BRILLIANT BRAIN – almost there but it’s a tricky one as there’s too much to say. It’s for a slightly younger age group than usual, I’d say 9-13.
  • Three online events – one international education conference, one for parents at a school in Hampshire and one in Bucharest. I’m getting the hang of online events. There are pros and cons, the main pros being able to drink my own coffee and being able to mute myself if I have a coughing fit.
  • Planning promotional activities for The Awesome Power of Sleeplet me know if you have ideas!
    • I might do a public online event on teenage sleep.  Let me know if you think I should. I won’t if no one asks…
  • Working on how to promote my Teaching Materials for schools – brilliant and unique resources especially designed to address topics about teenage mental health and wellbeing and perfect for PSHE departments, tutor group activities and school assemblies. I’ve had lovely feedback so far but I find it hard to find the time to market them. I’ve recently taken on freelance help with this – *waves to Caroline*.


  • THE AWESOME POWER OF SLEEP is published by Walker Books. Look out for giveaways and various freebies! Subscribe to my site if you don’t want to miss any offers.
  • The online event on teenage sleep, if there’s demand.
  • Editing 10 WAYS BBB and BE RESILIENT – must make sure I don’t get muddled… Mind you, resilience is one of the ways to build a brilliant brain.


  • I hope to offer a public online event on Understanding and Supporting Teenage Brains, for parents and any adults interested – limited numbers so make sure you subscribe to the site so as not to miss out! Do you think I should do this?
  • Deadlines for 10 WAYS and RESILIENT loom.

March onwards

  • Will I have time to get started on a big new idea? Or will I be bogged down in STUFF? Fingers crossed there’s no stuff!

Meanwhile, this weekend?

I’m going nowhere near my desk! Housework, a bath, a trip to a paint shop, gardening, baking bread.  The Teenage Brain Woman has to look after her own mental health and wellbeing!

Apologies for blog silence this month. It’s been a tricky one but I’m not alone in that. I’m still here, trying to improve teenage mental health and wellbeing. I will be back before Christmas with news of the possible online event on sleep (if you want it!) and with advice for families and young people on how to have the brain-healthiest holiday period possible. A break is going to be both extra necessary and extra difficult in many ways. I’m here to help!



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2 Responses

  1. I enjoy your blogs and admire your energy and honesty. I am interested in understanding and supporting teenage brains, since you ask. I work with both ends of the spectrum- with young people bravely tackling on-line learning and with older people equally bravely facing the difficulties of old age (often 90+). I’m fascinated by the whole life experience and how people make choices. Your work is inspirational in an approachable way. Enjoy your weekend off and thank you for all you do and share.

    1. Thanks, Anna! That’s a lovely, supportive message and I appreciate it.

      I had a very positive response when I mentioned an online event on Twitter so it’s definitely something I’d like to do. I have a freelance business assistant now so I’m going to ask her to look into the ins and outs and work out whether I have time.

      Have a good weekend yourself! Important for us all to look after ourselves.

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