Guest Blog: Turn Lights On Newbie

May 26th, 2016

Hello there, my name is Gwyneth, I am the Community Engager here at Turn Lights On and I am responsible for some of the videos you may have seen, tweets you may have retweeted and lots more!

I am new to TLO, both as an employee and understanding the concept. So I thought I would share with you all my journey through the past 2 months of learning what “turning someone’s lights on” is.

Two months ago when I received the call from George telling me that she wanted me on the team, my emotional state and outlook on the world was very different. At the time I was in the process of deciding whether or not to end the company I had co-founded, run, and devoted my entire life to for the last 18 months. It was not an easy decision, it definitely wasn’t a happy one, and it had dragged on for many months. “You’re going to work for a happiness company? You’re the most miserable person I know!” was the resounding reaction I had from my friends, who had already dubbed me ‘Sadness’ from the film Inside Out. Going into the role, I felt a little bit like a fraud, how can I help others be happy when I am struggling with it so much myself?

For most of my life I had considered myself a positive person, but often circumstance means that happiness is difficult to come by, and one of the most important things I have learnt from coming to work at Turn Lights On is that it is okay not to be happy all the time. In fact sometimes the pressure to be so, can be the thing that is holding you back.

I also learnt that turning someone’s lights on is something I have already been doing. One of my favourite parts of moving house is the few hours you spend on the phone to energy companies, internet providers and the council tax people. Having had a few friends that have had to endure the world of call centres, I know that often it’s not an enjoyable job so I have always made an effort to try and be the most enjoyable phone call that person has that day…or in other words, I tried to turn their lights on!

But it’s also been about learning to recognise when my lights are turned on too, and realising that you don’t really have to look that far for happiness, it can be as easy as laughing with the lady in the Chewbacca mask or watching the office plot plant grow because you have watered it every day. It’s about being conscious of that and feeling those emotions, happy, sad or anywhere in-between.

Over the past few days I have had my lights turned on by the happiness playlist & general fabulousness of the Early Bird Bakery in Cardiff, which is the sunniest happiest bakery I’ve ever set foot in, the wonderful old man who smiled at me on Tuesday morning and made my walk to work even more enjoyable and countless happy dogs that I have run into and been able to stroke. So I want to end with a big thank you to Early Bird, to that old man, and to all those dogs. But I also want to say a big thank you to my lovely colleagues for turning my lights on every single day! And you lot? Go out and make someone’s day because they might just make yours too!

Lots of love, and hope to meet you all soon,

Gwyneth x



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