Sometimes inspiration comes from the most unlikely of sources.

Recently Collins McNicholas hosted an online event during which we spoke with numerous people to advise them on their CV, offer them job seeking tips, and give them insight into the current market. The point of this was to help people to be proactive and motivate them to work on their CV and take time to think about what they want to do next in their career.

During one of my calls though, it was I that was helped rather than helping. The lady on the other end of the phone had been laid off as a result of COVID-19, yet she was so courageous and positive. By the end of our conversation, she gave me some advice, and I wanted to share it with you as it has really helped me. We all need inspiration these days, and the following framework has given me some.

It’s as simple as ABCBACE’.

Inspiration from the BACE Framework


Take care of your body. Get out for a walk, have a soothing bath, do your nails, put on your favourite shirt, or whatever it takes for you and your body to feel good. Sometimes it is as simple as washing your hair and using conditioner!

After watching a lot of videos on the benefits of coconut oil for your hair, I decided to buy some and try it out. Unfortunately, I either left it in too long or did not research enough because I was left with hair that feels like straw and dyed bedsheets. Whoops!


Complete a task throughout your day that has been niggling at you for a while. No matter how small the task, a sense of achievement is important for a positive mindset.

I cleaned out the spice press – not that I have ever used spices – so it’s a mystery to me how they got there. What is ‘’Garam Masala’, anyone?


Call someone, call anyone you have not spoken to in a while. This amazing lady had not spoken to anyone in a whole week and was looking forward to this call simply to chat with another person. We talked about her previous work placements and laughed about some interview horror stories. A simple conversation can mean a lot to someone. It just shows how important it is to think of others in this crisis.

I tried this the following day with one of my elderly neighbours. However, it backfired pretty spectacularly when she kept repeating ‘no, I do not need a new washing machine!’. My response of ‘no it’s Roisin!’ was met with a sudden click and she hung up. But hey it is the thought that counts, right?


Do something you enjoy doing! What is your passion? What have you always wanted to try? What do you never have the time to do because you used to commute to and from Dublin every day?

I have taken up ballet classes on YouTube, and I paint the occasional catastrophe. They are all disastrous and sort of muddy, but Picasso had to start somewhere, right? Who knows, maybe someday, my hidden talent will be revealed, and I will make millions. Yes perhaps. Moving on 😊

Inspiration: Roisin's masterpiece
Inspiration found - Painting by Roisin

I hope you all enjoyed my weekend of (mostly unsuccessful) experiments; I know I did! It kept me busy, and I laughed a lot telling my mum the story about our neighbour, the ballet and the coconut oil.

Most importantly, I did it all while ticking off my BACE tasks. It ensured a productive week and gave me goals to focus on. I now track my BACE tasks on my schnauzer calendar each week. It can be different tasks and activities for everyone, each to their own. Personally, I wanted something to focus on and enjoy after work hours – hence the ballet and painting. This was my form of meditation, and all joking aside, I loved it.

I do hope you are all keeping safe and that you know you are not alone in this. We all suffer in different ways, and we are all in this together. I hope my antics put a smile on your face, and I just wanted to say thanks to this wonderful woman I met at our online event for putting a smile on mine. I thought I was helping you, but instead, you helped me.


Roisin Donnellan

Recruitment Consultant

Collins McNicholas Recruitment & HR Services Group