Columnist Al Jenning is going to make some changes...

They say that Madonna is the queen of reinvention. She’s been a dance-floor cowgirl, an ABBA-inspired disco diva, an erotic sex kitten, a rebel heart, and most recently, Madame X.

In a career spanning four decades, one thing that Madonna has never been uninspiring. She is the queen of reinvention, so if Madonna can do it, then why can’t I?

Sometimes you’ve got to make some changes; because as Real Housewife of O.C., Heather “Pretentious-Pants” Dubrow says; “If everybody around you is telling your dead, it’s probably time to lie down”.

I’ve been frank about the problems that I’ve had with my confidence and body image over the last ten years, and as the sun goes down on another glorious weekend in God’s own country, I’ve decided that I’ve got the make the changes I need, to get to where I want to be in my life. There is always going to be times in your life when you’re going to want, or need, to reinvent yourself. People go through significant changes in their lives. Be it moving on from an old relationship, moving to a new house, losing a loved one or moving jobs.

I’m moving on from an old relationship – myself.

When something terrible happens in your life, you’ve got three choices. You can let it define you, let it destroy you or you can let it strengthen you. As far as I’m concerned, reinvention is all about making changes to your life to make you happy – you’re not doing it for anybody else. If you are, then maybe you should take a second to wonder why.

I know why I want to change. I’ve got a stage in my life where I want more for myself. I want to be more assertive and have more confidence. I want to be able to walk into a room and own it because for so long I’ve been the booby prize that nobody wants. To reinvent yourself, you need to have an idea of who you want to be. You can get inspiration from anyone, be it a friend or family member who you look up to. Cast members of the Real Housewives inspire me. I want to have the assertive, quick tongue of Bethenny Frankel, and be able to call out the bullshit like Lisa Rinna. Have the confidence of the Gina Liano. These are qualities that I want to have, and while they may not be the role-models people have in mind, the traits that make them influential individuals.

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I need to make changes in my life. The first thing I’m going to do is pack in the cigarettes. They are one of my significant fixes in my life. Every time I get stressed or need to escape from something for a few minutes, I reach for the fags. They are my crux. The number of times throughout the week I say; “right, this is my last packet”, then twenty minutes later, I’m down the local off licence asking for twenty John Player Special. I’ve tried all sorts to quit. I’ve been attempting the vape, the patches, and the gum and they don’t seem to be doing the trick. I’ve decided I’m going to try some hypnotherapy and see if that helps me. I’m always open to trying new things; maybe this will be the thing that finally helps.

I’m making a more conscious effort to eat healthier, and I’m going to start working out harder in the gym to get some more weight off. I’ve always had an unhealthy relationship with food, and again, that’s something that I need to take a real hard look at, because If I’m not eating right, then how the hell am I going to get the weight off in the gym. The COVID lockdown played a massive toll on my mental health, and I fell back into some particularly bad habits. It’s time for me to snap the fuck out of it and sort my shit out. If I feel better about myself, then that will shine through.

I hope that if I make these changes and improvements to my life, then it will eventually spill into my love life, and I may find that perfect relationship that I’ve been yearning for, for so long.

The thing about reinvention is that some people think it’s about tossing out the old new and starting entirely anew, like a blank canvas. I don’t believe that is 100 per cent accurate. To me, the power of reinvention lies within the knowledge of everything that you’ve been through—using that to leverage a new persona. You don’t need to start from scratch – there’s another version of you already there. You just need to find a way to tap into it.

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