Nicole Prust on Trying New Things as We Come out of Lockdown

July 1st, 2020

Have you ever dreamt of doing something, but have felt afraid to take that first step? Perhaps you are filled with sudden feelings of doubt or maybe you feel worried about what others may think. This is exactly how Samuel feels as he dreams about life outside The Lazy Lagoon! He has had plenty of time to think about all the things he’d do if he had the courage however, even when he gets to the edge of his safe bubble he is filled with uncertainty.

 Sometimes, we find the courage within ourselves to break free of our comfort zones, and other times, we need a little help! The Dinglewot for me, is a symbol of all the people who have given me the confidence and encouragement to do something that I wasn’t brave enough to do on my own. That one gentle push can instil in you, the bravery that can send you on a lifetime of adventures, as Samuel experiences in this story!

When I wrote this book, I really related to Samuel. Even as an adult, it can be tempting to remain in your comfort zone at times, surrounded by things familiar to you. During this time in our lives where so many of us huddled together in (as Samuel would say) our ‘little brown huts’, we have had the gift of time to perhaps think about all the things we have dreamt of doing but have never done. Like The Lazy Lagoon, our world stood still and the fast paced buzz of our everyday lives slowed right down. As we began to emerge from this lockdown, I made a promise to myself to try my best to find the courage to move past the self-doubt and insecurities that have prevented me from doing things in the past. The time is now and there really is no time like the present!

Perhaps we all have an inner Samuel, but I think we all have an inner Dinglewot too! As a primary school teacher, I feel so privileged to be in a position where I can encourage children to push past their worries and fears and try new things. During this pandemic, teachers around the world have come together in the most extraordinary and inspiring way to support their students, even though it has meant that this encouragement usually experienced face to face has come from a distance.

Perhaps you will try something new and think, “you know what, that’s definitely not for me!” But there might be other times where you think, “Why did I not try this sooner?” Maybe you might be the one who encourages someone to step outside their comfort zone!

The Sloth and the Dinglewot is my first children’s book. It is a light-hearted story with a deeper message and I hope, from the bottom of my heart, that it brings a smile to those who read it!

As we navigate this new world together, don’t be afraid to try something new! For, in the wise words of the Dinglewot, “maybe you’ll like it or maybe you won’t, but if you don’t try it then how will you know?”

When Samuel the Sloth feels brave enough to leave his cosy hut, he meets the mysterious Dinglewot. Together they discover incredible places, and Samuel will learn that overcoming fears and doubts means more adventures, friendships and happiness.

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