24 Years

Nearly three weeks ago on the 3rd of April of this year (2017) I turned 24 years old! Where has the years gone. Who would have thought I would be celebrating my 24th birthday on a cruise ship in the Caribbean! It was only two years ago I was panicking about what I was going to do with my life. Plus in a big chunk of 6 years in life I couldn’t even imagine how I would make it to 24, I couldn’t see that far into the future. I believe I have only started living my life how I want in the past year and a half.

I used to regret the years I was gripped with an eating disorder and anxiety, I felt like i had wasted my life; the crucial years of my life enjoying my teenager and adolescence years where everyone figured themselves out, lived a journey of ups and downs together and was able to handle it. Now a realise the only thing I regret is hurting my body and others I love around me. That part of my life will always be with me as it was my only comfort in my life at that time…it will always be there trying to take control again of my life but I have grown inner strength to finally live my life happy. Nothing is going to change how I live my life now as I have worked too hard…my body doesn’t deserve it. Now 24 in the past year from 23 years old I have found myself again and what my real reason is for living on this earth as me…as Hayley Vincent.


How did I celebrate? 

Back home I really don’t get excited for my birthday. It was just another year I had struggled through to get to an older age……this added more panic, stress, hate, loathe and failure as my life wasn’t planning out like I imagined as a little girl. However, now I see my birthday as another year for opportunity, growth, risk, recovery, love and excitement. I celebrate another year of being free and grateful (hence the tattoo I have…to remind me everyday of how far I have come). Another year of being happy for who I am and whatever weight I am. 


For my 24th I celebrated on a cruise ship with my extended second family. Living and working on a smaller cruise ship you really end up like family. I celebrated my 24th in Labadee, Haiti….despite visiting there multiple times in this contract and my previous contract I decided to embrace the beauty of the island. Normally I wouldn’t get off in this place as it is all commercialised for the cruise guests (it is part of the island used for the ship), however it is still another island that is beautiful, different culture, different people, amazing scenery….you cannot complain or be ungrateful. However it was a long working day with no time to really celebrate. I ended running an extra activity for the guests on the island and only had a maximum of 3 hours off before I headed back to work. Well them three hours free ended up making my birthday the most special and getting over an enormous fear. I did TWO zip lines!! One of them was 500ft above!!! I didn’t know I was doing it as if I had known I probably would have backed out. It was such a special and memorable day for me. Having someone surprise with this was such a shock….in my head I think I don’t deserve this and if i had known I would have said “no don’t plan this”. It is weird how I got over such a fear with ease, this means to me my anxiety had reduced and I am truly living a free life…I now feel safe in this life and life isn’t against me. 




Even though I was exhausted and just wanted to sleep that night, everyone in the team and other people from other departments encouraged me to celebrate at midnight for my birthday. I didn’t even think about this I was just going to sleep as we had an early morning of work again the next day. At this moment I was so happy…..being around people if I have’t known long were making my birthday special. The sports team as normal had a little get together in one of the cabins. I really don’t think about the presents I may receive on my birthday, I would rather just have the people most meaningful to me around me at that time. The team all acted like it wasn’t my birthday and saying they hadn’t got me anything….normal gullible me I believed them but I didn’t care one bit. As long as we were together is all that mattered to me. Suddenly, I had a wrapped present in front of me…a pillow saying ‘blondes have more fun’ that was a gift from the sports team…again I could have cried with happiness. This quote sums me up so well…..I am blonde and now in my new life I have more fun than anymore 🙂


I even got surprised with a cake!!! I will be honest I nearly cried with happiness AGAIN as I didn’t have a clue!!! At midnight everyone sang happy birthday and there was a cake arranged by a certain someone. That moment will be memorable for life. I was with people who I hardly really knew, from all over the world and they were there wanting to celebrate my birthday…..a very special moment filled with gratefulness and true happiness. You learn people aren’t as judgmental as you think, the world is a community and full of acceptance.

This 24th year my goal is to take risks more with my emotions. This means I need to learn to embrace and show different emotions to people. I think I am protecting myself but really I am hiding myself from others. Showing your emotions is a leaning experience that may result in you getting hurt or full of happiness…but you have to take the risk in life.


The next day we was in San Juan, Puerto Rico! My favourite port of the trip!!! Due to rotation of the schedules I didn’t have much time off in port but this worked out the best as I had the evening off where there was an all crew party which I decided to class as my birthday party!!! What a night! Drinking alcohol would normally make me more anxious, I would hate it and feel so self- conscious meaning I drink more and more. With so many people around I felt like I could be 100% myself, I danced the night away and enjoyed my life with people I love.

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It was an amazing birthday and I want to thank everyone who made it special for me. The next day we was in St Maarten and I had a nice chilled day full of sunshine, good company and time spent swimming in the sea. Despite everyone feeling slightly fragile from the night before some of the sports team and I dressed up like normal human beings to go for a meal that evening…making this a THREE DAY CELEBRATION!



Turning 24 I didn’t even imagine where I would be in life. It is weird as I don’t know what I want to do in life right now, but I am not panicking about it. I am enjoying travelling, visiting new countries and  enjoying meeting new people and living life as me. Meeting so many people in the same boat..literally…has put me at ease. Whatever I want to do in the future will come…..I am no longer planning. I know I am a perfectionist but I have learnt life isn’t about failure to meet your goals…..it is about embracing the small goals you have.

Speak Soon xx

‘Live Free…Live a Journey’

Happy New Year 2017

Happy New Year Everyone! I hope everyone had a great night with family and friends reflecting on the year of 2016!

I have always had a love/hate relationship with New Year…yes it is a great way to set yourself goals, have a fresh start, everyone is in the same boat and positive motivation is everywhere. However, I used to hate the pressure that comes with a New year, the pressure from the media/social media, the pressure you put on yourself to change and the unrealistic goals set once that clock hits midnight. This is why a lot of people feel like they have “failed” as soon as they fall off the bandwagon which could be as early as January and totally give up during February …….but this is totally NONSENSE…YOU HAVEN’T FAILED!!!!!!! No way have you failed…you are just living!!! There is no need to punish yourself as you can have your ‘new start’ and get right back on the bandwagon whatever time and day it is in the year….it is all about your choices to get the balance right.

My resolutions? Well I have decided not to make one big goal for the year. I am going to set myself small goals throughout the year of 2017. I just want to maintain living a positive lifestyle, I want to keep learning and making changes to better my personal life and career. By setting myself small goals throughout the year I am more likely to successfully complete them as I have a bad habit of starting things and not finishing them. To help with this I am going to continue reading motivational content and mindfulness books to ensure positive changes are continuously being made by learning more about self-worth and being mindful in daily tasks. Some examples include  Light is the New Black by Rebecca Campbell and 52 Small changes for the Mind by Brett Blumenthal. To help with this it is important to track my progress so I did purchase The Happiness Planner (The Happiness Planner) last year and surprise, surprise I got to February and didn’t continue. This year I will begin to use it but I am not going to put any pressure on myself to complete everyday as it begins to become a chore rather than ‘me time’ plus there are a lot of different sections that need to be completed and it can take time. I need to want to do it and enjoy it.

A long with this and what I am actually committing to everyday (can I stress….for the next 5 YEARS!) is my small Q&A book (Q&A) . I think it is the perfect size, nice and compact to keep with me when travelling around and basically it is a question given to you everyday. The same ones each day for the next 5 years. I find this really interesting to see how my answers change across the 5 years and how my outlook on such things change over time, plus it is very simple with not much thinking needed!!! It is an easy task out of your day to complete and gives you some time to just sit and think about one simple topic. Also, it is important I have a notebook around to just jot down anything I want, from ideas, how I feel, lists, inspiration etc.


Despite scrolling through my newsfeed on my social media and finding out it hasn’t been a good year for many people makes me sad. I have had one of the best years of my life in 2016 and hoping 2017 is even better. However, I know 2016 has been a year of great losses, political crisis, wars and distress etc. which is all heart-breaking. This is why with all the negativity happening in the world it is important to maintain a positive mind and look after your self-worth.

How did I celebrate New Years Eve 2016?

Obviously with my family! I have never been the person to go out on New Years Eve…it doesn’t appeal to me at all going out to over-priced places, everyone being too drunk to function, long lines, expensive taxis etc etc. I think it would be good if it was more like a private function with family and friends but to be honest I enjoy staying in. This is because for a good 5+ years I was working in a pub environment on NYE ,which was good as at least it had some atmosphere and I would always come out with some decent tips, but I was always so glad to get straight to bed after that brutal shift!

So on NYE my parents and I decided to go on a long walk. The weather was perfect…..it is surprisingly not that cold in England for this time of year. It was a crisp, frosty, dry day with no wind or rain in sight. We ended up walking in total of 10 miles! With a pit stop in the middle for some snacks and a drink at Worsley Old Hall which I LOVE as they had music playing, everyone was dressed down and relaxed but most of all they allow dogs inside! I was in my element. It was relaxing to walk through my home town appreciating the beauty and nature around and just chatting with the parents.



Once it got to the evening it was nice to just relax. My parents, my nan and I sat around the table having a Chinese (which I haven’t had enjoyably for years) and drinks, but most of all we just appreciated each others company. Once it reached midnight my parents and I stood outside the house and watched the fireworks going off from other peoples houses then not long after we all went to bed. Haha! Not the most eventful NYE but it was perfect!

I wish everyone a happy, healthy and positive year of 2017.

Speak Soon x

Live Free…Live a Journey