Fortune Favours The Bold: How The Film “Bohemian Rhapsody”​ Changed My Life

Fortune Favours The Bold: How The Film “Bohemian Rhapsody”​ Changed My Life

One year ago today I saw the film “Bohemian Rhapsody” at the cinema for the first time and at the risk of sounding cliched it changed my life.

I’m sure many of you know how much of a fan I am of Queen and especially Freddie Mercury; I was inconsolable when he died on 24 November 1991. I grew up with Queen, Freddie and their music from the moment I was born and when Freddie died so young at the age of 45 it hit me hard.

I’d heard that a biopic about Queen and Freddie was going to be released, and after some false starts over the last ten years or so it eventually hit the cinema screens. I was hooked. One line in the film hit me and resonated with me like nothing else.

Fortune favours the bold.

There are any other life lessons to be found in Bohemian Rhapsody, and I’ve written about these here in this blog – https://cybergeekgirl.co.uk/5-life-lessons-from-the-queen-…/. Seeing Bohemian Rhapsody for the first time on this day 1 year ago something clicked in me and I knew that I had to go for the things I want and for the work I love doing.

Fast forward a year, and I am a triple award-winning cyber security consultant and professional. I’ve won SC Awards Europe’s “Outstanding Contribution to Cyber Security” award, the UK Cyber Security Awards “Cyber Security Professional” category and Women in Cyber Awards USA “Supporter of Women in Cyber Security category. I am undertaking a contract delivering security awareness to staff for a leading firm of solicitors in the UK. I run a thriving cyber security community through the UK Cyber Security Association. I am an author, blogger and keynote speaker at conferences and events. I am part of a thriving infosec and cyber security community. I’m writing a book entitled “The Rise of the Cyber Women”. I’ve made amazing friends and learnt so much in a year. And I heard last week that I am one of SC Magazine’s Top 50 Women of Influence in Cyber Security. I am very proud of all of it.

All I’ve done, the only change I’ve made, is to be clear about what I want, gone for it and asked for things that I know will help me along the way. I’ve been bold, forthright and confident, even if I don’t feel as if I am confident. I suffer from Impostor Syndrome, but I try to overcome it as best I can!

This is only the beginning. I have so much more that I want to do and so much more that I want to accomplish. But I will never forget that Queen and especially Freddie showed me the way. They opened the door by including the line “fortune favours the bold” in “Bohemian Rhapsody”. The rest was up to me. And it still is up to me. I am the only one in charge of my own destiny. I am the one who is responsible for my actions, my achievements and my failures – no-one else.

I’ve seen “Bohemian Rhapsody” so many times since a year ago today that I’ve lost count, and I look forward to watching it many, many more times.

Thank you Freddie for always being with me, even if you are no longer on this earth. And thank you Brian May, Roger Taylor and John Deacon for keeping Queen alive and keeping Freddie’s memory alive. I can’t thank you all enough!

Altogether now – aaayyyyy……ohhhh forever. I still love you Freddie and Queen, and I always will xx

#FortuneFavoursTheBold
#BohemianRhapsody
#Queen
#FreddieMercury
#QueenForever
#FreddieForever
#AlwaysReadyForFreddie

7 Day Non-Fiction Book Challenge: Day 7

7 Day Non-Fiction Book Challenge: Day 7

Today is the final day of my 7-day challenge to post a non-fiction book that has inspired me and helped me to do better is here, and the last book I’m sharing is “Smarketing” by Tim Hughes, Adam Gray and Hugo Whicher.

This one resonated me a lot because throughout my career I’ve often encountered animosity from sales teams as a marketer. The sales department and the marketing department were often seen as two separate entities, and never the twain shall meet, but in actual fact I’ve often thought that sales and marketing should be blended closely together for maximum business success.

It appears I am not the only one to think this. Whereas in the past the sales and marketing departments have been two separate entities in a business with different leaders, different budgets and different organisational structures, a new shift is happening today “Smarketing” brings together both sales and marketing into one entity, which is in part fuelled by the digital revolution.

The book talks about why companies should blend these two departments into one single, streamlined “smarketing” department which will result in sales people becoming better marketers, and marketers becoming better sales people. This in turn leads to bigger, better business growth all round.

I love the clearly defined implementation strategies in the book that can be applied by any business, regardless of size or sector, and “Smarketing” to me is an invaluable resource for any marketing or sales professional looking to drive growth and succeed in the new era of marketing.

What books have inspired you the most?

#7DayNonFictionBookChallenge
#SelfHelp
#NonFiction
#LivingMyBestLife

7 Day Non-Fiction Book Challenge: Day 6

7 Day Non-Fiction Book Challenge: Day 6

It is day 6 of my 7-day challenge to post a non-fiction book that has inspired me and helped me to do better is here, and today I’m sharing “The Power of Karma” by Mary T Browne.

First of all, I should say that because of everything that has happened to me and all the hurt, betrayals and bullying I have endured over the last few years I am a big believer in karma, and I fully believe that those who bullied me, betrayed me and hurt me will get their comeuppance for their actions one day. In a couple of instances that has already been the case, and I’ve been very lucky that I’ve been able to step back and watch while karma did its work, so this book was one that had been on my “read” list for some time.

The book focuses on karma – the ancient law of cosmic cause and effect. It says that any actions in past lifetimes can determine what happens to you in the present, and what goes around comes around. The good news is that you have the power to control your destiny, no matter what the state is of your past karma.

I loved the first-hand accounts from those who had transformed their lives by changing their karma, allowing them to find greater health, love security and balance in their lives. Ultimately, changing your karma can help you grow spiritually and make positive “deposits” in your karmic bank account.

This book is one that will continue to be on my reading list to remind me that no matter how badly people have treated me I have the power to change my karma, and my response to them.

What books have inspired you the most?

#7DayNonFictionBookChallenge
#SelfHelp
#NonFiction
#LivingMyBestLife

7 Day Non-Fiction Book Challenge: Day 5

7 Day Non-Fiction Book Challenge: Day 5

Day 5 of my 7-day challenge to post a non-fiction book that has inspired me and helped me to do better is here, and today I’m sharing “The War of Art” by Steven Pressfield.

This book is one that I could read over and over again. For as long as I can remember I had a voice inside my head that said I wasn’t good enough to write a book, or write for publication, or stand up and speak in public. I had the ideas, I had the inclination, but the voice in my head would drown out my creative side and tell me that I wasn’t good enough.

Whether we want to dream up a business venture, write a novel or paint a masterpiece, the voice in our head is what will make or break us even starting this. “The War of Art” helped me to recognise and overcome the obstacles that were in my head and holding me back. I was able to put together a strong plan to drown out the voices in m head and help me achieve the creative things I’d always wanted to achieve.

Since I read this book and applied the techniques in it to my own life I have written a book, been published in magazines and spoke in public at events as a keynote speaker and panellist. I can’t thank this book enough for helping me to break those inner creative blocks and do what I had always dreamed of doing – writing and speaking.

What books have inspired you the most?

#7DayNonFictionBookChallenge
#SelfHelp
#NonFiction
#LivingMyBestLife

7 Day Non-Fiction Book Challenge: Day 4

7 Day Non-Fiction Book Challenge: Day 4

Gosh, day 4 of my challenge to share a non-fiction book for 7 days that has inspired me and helped me to do better is here already! Today’s book is “The Power of Now” by Eckhart Tolle.

This book was recommended to me by my good friend John James, who is the author of “From The Darkness.” This book is about his experiences of domestic abuse, and is a harrowing read. John has managed to survive all that has happened to him and turned his experiences into something good by raising awareness of male domestic abuse.

“The Power of Now” focuses on helping us to live in a more mindful way, to surrender to the present moment and create a world in our heads where problems do not exist. Only when we fully do this can we embrace our true selves and discover that we are already complete an perfect.

Living in the moment is hard to achieve by most of us, but “The Power of Now” helps us to open ourselves up to transforming ourselves and finding peace and joy in the moment.

What books have inspired you the most?

#7DayNonFictionBookChallenge
#SelfHelp
#NonFiction
#LivingMyBestLife

Breaking The Silence: I Am An #EmptyArmedMother

Breaking The Silence: I Am An #EmptyArmedMother

As well as it being Cyber Security Awareness month, which is a huge deal in my work industry, October is also Pregnancy and Infant Loss Awareness month.

I am sharing this picture of myself holding my much loved and much wanted son Francesco “Frankie” Enrico Ventura. He was born sleeping when I was 33 weeks pregnant; he never opened his eyes, nor did he take a breath in this world.

After having 10, yes 10, early miscarriages all around the 5-6 week mark and losing my Frankie when he was born sleeping, I am one of the “1 in 4” who loses a baby through miscarriage, stillbirth or neo-natal death. It is a shocking statistic, and one of the things I do aside from my work in cyber security is to raise as much awareness of baby loss as possible to help break the silence and taboo around this subject.

I may not be a mother in the “traditional” sense, but I am still a mother, albeit an empty armed one. And being an empty armed mother brings its own challenges. The time I would have spent with my Frankie has to be filled somehow, and I now spend my time forging ahead in a career in cyber security. I always have in the back of my mind that the life I have now is the life I wasn’t meant to have. Today I should be the mother of a son who has not long starting school and is approaching his 6th birthday. But it is life I have got, so I am making the best of it and trying to achieve as much as I can.

Such is the dedication to my work these days that I’ve even won awards for what I do, and what I do has become, as Freddie Mercury says in the film Bohemian Rhapsody, a distraction from the in-between moments.

There is a scene in Bohemian Rhapsody where Freddie meets his future partner Jim Hutton for the first time. All his friends have just left a party he held at his house and Freddie says to Jim, “They’re not my friends, not really. They’re distractions”. Jim asks, “From what?” and Freddie replies “The in between moments I suppose. I find them intolerable. All of the darkness you thought you’d left behind comes creeping back in.”

That is EXACTLY how I feel today. And why I choose to put so much into my work. If I stop the in-between moments happen and I go back to that dark place where I was when Frankie was born sleeping. I know that he wouldn’t want me to be in that dark place, so I try very hard through my work in cyber security to stay out of it.

Whatever I do now work and career wise is for my Frankie, in the hope I can make him proud of me. I want him to look at me from up there, see me winning the awards I have won, see me being the best version of myself and see me making huge strides and headway into the cyber security industry as the CEO & Founder of the UK Cyber Security Association and as an author, blogger, thought leader and keynote speaker in the cyber security industry and say to everyone he’s up there with, “that’s my Mommy.” THIS is why I do what I do, and why my work means so much to me now. It helps me avoid and get through the “in between” moments. I know such wonderful and lovely people in the Infosec community (with one or two exceptions) and I’m grateful for all of you.

If any of you would like to read more about my awareness raising work in this area, please visit my blog www.frankieslegacy.co.uk.