I was incredibly fortunate the other week to receive an invitation from Channel 5 to come to London and meet with Paul Osbourne – the new Creative Director of the forthcoming Celebrity Big Brother series, as well as returning Executive Editor Tamsin Dodgson.
I’ve been lucky enough over the past couple of years to also receive invites to attend the live launch shows and tour the house with Rylan. But I’ve always politely turned them down. Usually I would use the fact that where the house is located in Borehamwood is too great of a distance to travel to from here in deepest Wiltshire and get out if it. But the honest truth is that I didn’t want to go as I didn’t think my anxiety would allow me to see it through.
But this time something kind of snapped inside me. I’m a huge fan of both the regular Big Brother series and the celebrity spin off, and so for me to turn down any opportunity to get involved with the show I love so much takes quite some doing. So this time, rather than instantly dismiss the invite and reply with a polite “Thanks but no thanks” I did the exact opposite and accepted the invitation.
So now, this coming Monday i’ll be travelling up to the famous Elstree Studios to meet with both Paul & Tamsin and a group of other Big Brother fans to discuss the upcoming series. I’ve got my train fares booked, (And rebooked due to a last minute change of location) and I’m definitely going to go. Even though it’s a good 3 hours plus each way from here to there I’m definitely going. No honestly, I really am. And I’ll tell you why.
For far too long I’ve always tended to avoid situations that take me out of my comfort zone. I’m a very introverted person who likes what he likes and doesn’t generally embrace the unknown – preferring to stick with the same old comfortable things and not take any risks. But I can’t keep living my life like that because all the time that I am I’m missing out on everything. Life and opportunities are just passing me by and it has to stop.
Of course I’m worried about Monday. I’m worried about the fact that I’m going to have to undertake such a huge journey via a number of trains because I won’t have the comfort and safety of my car. I’m worried that I’m going to have to cross London in order to get there because let’s face it, being in London after being here where everything is so stripped back and quiet is a bit of a head fuck. I’m worried about meeting people as well, even though everyone I’ve spoken to on Twitter who are also going are lovely and friendly, because I might not know what to say or I’ll end up saying the wrong thing or I’ll feel really awkward.
It would be so easy to just not go and not challenge myself but it’s something that I need to do in order to prove my stupid mental illness wrong. And I know full well that once I’ve done it, once I’ve been to the meeting and I’m on the train home to Wiltshire, I’ll be so damn proud of myself and it’ll be another big fat “up yours” to my anxiety.