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  • Writer's pictureSylvie Barr

What a week it's been... Reflections on talent, authenticity and self discovery


3 portraits: George Alagiah, Margot Robbie in Barbie the movie, Sinead O'Connor

As I got home last Monday after getting antibiotics to clear a chest infection, I heard of the passing of George Alagiah.


Two days later, I read in the evening that Sinead O’Connor had gone too.


Then 2 days after that, I took my daughter to watch Barbie, the Movie.


As my body was dealing with the infection and the impact of the antibiotics (I honestly can’t remember the last time I had taken some), I’ve spent the past few days in a weird bubble, like someone had pressed ‘pause’ on my own life’s movie.


This time of year is usually joyous and vibrant, light and unburdened.

Instead, the weather was unsettled, our neighbourhood eerily quiet, with very little noise from the children who normally play in the cul-de-sac behind our house.


Meanwhile the Mediterranean was caught in the wild fires and the heat storms, and we watched the scenes of holidaymakers and local people fleeing the furnace.


As I rested at home, I reflected on the two figures who had passed away.

Both my contemporaries (Sinead was only 6 months older than me), they had punctuated my life with their presence - one arguably more so in my youth, as I had lost track of her journey - the other as the regular, friendly face of the evening news for a number of years.


Although very different in origin, character and upbringing, Sinead and George had in my view something in common. They both had strong beliefs, and a deep sense of wanting to make a difference. Yes Sinead had to battle many demons, yet, like George, she wanted to make her existence count. They both wanted to shed a light on things that mattered to them, they wanted to give a voice to those who had been forgotten, or worse, who had been suppressed and hidden.


Reading their obituaries, it’s clear that they were both warm, generous, loving individuals, whose presence was genuinely felt by those around them.

They were both incredibly talented in their respective fields.


And that’s why I think the world will be greyer without them around us.


Now what’s Barbie got to do with it all?

To be honest, I took Fe to the cinema last Friday for a bit of escapism, for a girlie moment with my daughter after a very meh 😕 few days. I needed some pink and not to think!


Well, that didn’t quite go to plan I’m afraid…

I’m not gonna be a spoiler, as some of you may have planned to go and watch it in the next few days.

Let’s just say that the film is like a pink mille-feuille: it has many layers to it, and some of these layers link back to George and Sinead.


I’d love to know what you think of the film once you’ve seen it, as I would love to know who’s inspired you as you grew up, and who you admire now and why.

So if you have a moment, do get in touch and let’s carry on the conversation!


And if you or someone you know need help with discovering their authentic self and embracing their innate talents, you can book a discovery call here.

Sometimes a sounding board, or a fresh pair of eyes, is all we need to see a clearer path…



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