If necessity is the source of invention, so too is it often the reason for just cracking on and doing something, usually something that has been put off or actively avoided for a while. I am guilty of this, I can procrastinate and swerve and delay until the proverbial cows come home and after that until they are milked and set back in to the meadow.

Often it is my fear of doing it wrong that generates the delay and all too often it is a voice in my head, sometimes triggered by a voice heard outside of my head, that tells me I can’t or I shouldn’t or I won’t be very good.

One such arena that bears witness to my avoidance at an epic level is DIY and decorating. Many moons ago I did diddle off and leave a dining room wall a third painted and the job to someone else to finish because I got bored and this has turned in to, “Well, you see, Alison, you don’t do DIY.” Well, fasten my tool belt and hand me a power drill because I now do do DIY.

I unscrewed and moved a shelf just yesterday as it needed doing and no one else was doing it anytime soon. Shelf is now in its’ new position, with books on it and it hasn’t gone wonky or fallen off over night, so unless it is the shelf-master of delayed action, I am assuming in situ it will stay and a good DIY job I have done.

I was recently approached about a new writing project in a field and a genre I had never thought to write and my initial thought was, “Oh, I’m not sure I can.” I agonised about whether I would do a good job and whether I would do the brilliant project idea, justice. But after urging from close friends and my children, I said yes.

It is now well underway and feed-back is great and I love it. I am immeasurably proud and it is turning in to something that I am beyond giddy to be involved with.

With ‘back to school’ upon us and that feeling in September forever associated with change, next steps and new challenges, it got me thinking about all the children set to start St. Cyres and Stanwell, primary schools, Universities, colleges and the like and how many times we are all guilty of telling ourselves that we can’t, we shouldn’t and if we do, we won’t be any good.

This is my appeal to all students, be they tiny tots taking first steps in to Reception, tweenagers embarking on ‘big school’ or those with a bit more experience, but often no fewer anxieties heading to further and higher education - go for it, try it; take advantage of the chance to learn and the opportunities it opens up.

Life is short and it is certainly too short to listen to voices that limit you or put you down.