Since January we’ve been running two Live a Good Story groups, for people who are wanting to progress their stories, and turn their ambitions and ideas into a reality. With Brighton Festival now well and truly upon us, it’s been so positive to see some of the group expressing their creativity and progressing their journeys by being involved, or performing in their own shows. And with so much good stuff going on, we thought it’d be a great opportunity to introduce some of the Live a Good Story group and share a bit of what they’re up to.
First up is Nick, who’s been working on his Brighton Bricks project. Brighton Bricks have their first ever Lego show on this Saturday 13th, so if you’re a Lego fan, do go and check it out. As part of the event Brighton Bricks are also giving the opportunity for people to donate old or new Lego to Brighton charity Rise, for children living at their refuge for survivors of domestic abuse.
Here is Nick’s journey of setting up Brighton Bricks, with some sage advice sprinkled in, in his own words.
SYS: What is your story up to now and what are you're up to at the moment?
N: For the last few years I have been busy on social media as my alter ego Bright Green Penguin, and that is how I discovered Share Your Story....
SYS: Hang on, for the uninitiated, who is Bright Green Penguin?
N: Well this was my way of championing and connecting people, especially under the three 3 Cs - charity, creativity and community. So I tweeted about what great things people did, and tried to connect people where I can, hoping to raise awareness. I saw what Share Your Story was doing, and thought it was such a great idea but working in London I was never able to get to an event. I enjoyed being the Penguin, but I always felt a bit passive doing this, and wanted to do something more active, something which helps people. The issue I had was I didn't know what to do. So when I saw the Live A Good Story course, it really inspired me, as it meant sharing my ideas with other people, rather than just being a Twitter profile picture. That is what I wanted, to be in a group, the idea of attending monthly sessions - all things which would encourage me to take Bright Green Penguin to the next level.
SYS: And has the it been helpful? Where has this Brighton Bricks stuff come from?
N: The great thing about doing the course, is the fact it has helped me THINK, I know we think all the time, but really think about what I want to do, and how I can get there. My bigggest obstacle was Bright Green Penguin felt too wide spread, didn't have a niche, a hook I could develop, and being in the group, doing the excercises made me think. It made me consider what I really want to do, and in the background I had a Lego group for adults called Brighton Bricks, which has been going for the last 18 months or so, and just meeting monthly, but really developing. Then I realised I could use my ideas for Bright Green Penguin for the Lego group. The group didn't have to be just about building bricks on our own, but could mean building bricks for the community. And more and more I have been thinking I have been working out how I could develop Brighton Bricks.
SYS: And where do you hope Brighton Bricks will be in a few years?
N: My long term ambition for Brighton Bricks is for it to become something I could make a living out of. I want it to be something which involves the community, like the way our Lego show at Dice Saloon also has a charity donation element, where people can donate their old or new Lego to Rise, a local charity who deal with victims of domestic abuse. This Lego will go to their refuge, so the children have something to play with. I have ideas of doing workshops with local community groups, having team building events, having more and more exhibitions, having the bricks both be an opportunity and encouragement for people to play and be creative, as well as helping out with mental health issues, like how I find building Lego really helps with my anxiety.
SYS: Any advice for people who have an idea but unsure where to start?
N: The more I am thinking about Brighton Bricks, the more know I think of new ideas, and for me one of the struggles was having too many ideas. So what I do know, is brain storm and list lots of ideas, but then pick one, work on it, see if it has legs, set myself deadlines, speak to people, make it real (want to do an event - put date in the diary etc), as well as making sure I breakdown these ideas into small chunks so I know I can complete the tasks. I still enjoy Bright Green Penguin, but this course has made me realise, things can connect, and also you shouldn't feel bad for picking something which feels easy and fun, which is why I never thought too much about Brighton Bricks. It felt too much fun, and work should be hard!?
Cheers Nick – and good luck for the event!
For more information about the Live a Good Story group, and how to join future groups, head over to the Live a Good Story page.