MINI VIEWS #1 - LOVE, CAREER OR BOTH? WITH LAUREN NICOLE MAYES.
Updated: Feb 14
NAME: Lauren Marshall/Lauren-Nicole Mayes
SINGLE/DATING/RELATIONSHIP: Very Single.
LOVE, CAREER OR BOTH? I hope BOTH.
WHEN I THINK OF MY GOOD FRIEND LAUREN, I WANT TO MAKE SURE ALL MY FRAGILE POSSESSIONS ARE SECURELY LOCKED AWAY FOR SHE HAD ME ON EDGE WITH HER INNOCENTLY GRACELESS WAYS FROM THE FIRST TIME I LAID EYES ON HER GORGEOUS SEA BLUE EYES. LAUREN BETTER KNOWN AS ‘LOZZZ’ IN MY BOOK SAID IN A DRAWN OUT NORTHERN ACCENT CAME INTO MY LIFE IN 2014 SHE WAS CLUMSY THEN AND SHE’S STILL CLUMSY NOW BUT I WOULDN’T HAVE HER ANY OTHER WAY. WITH HER HANDS FULL OF LUGGAGE AND HER HAIR IN ROLLERS USUALLY SHE IS ALREADY PREPPED AND READY AND ON HER WAY TO STARDOM. LOZ WAS ALWAYS CAREER FOCUSED, SHE ALWAYS KNEW WHAT SHE WANTED TO DO, SHE JUST HAD TO FIGURE OUT HOW TO GET THERE. A STINT ON THE CRUISE SHIP WITH ME, SHAKING AND EARNING OUR DOLLAR AND EATING POTATO CROQUETTES WHILST DOING SO, ACTING WAS ALWAYS THE WAY LAUREN WANTED TO GO. ORIGINALLY FROM BLACKPOOL SHE PACKED HER BAGS AND MOVED HER WAY ON DOWN TO MANCHESTER IN 2017 WHERE SHE NOW RESIDES IN A LUSH APARTMENT WITH HER BEST FRIEND DRINKING PORNSTAR MARTINIS ON A WEEKEND. YOU MAY OF SPOTTED HER IN CORONATION STREET OF LATE AND THIS GIRL I'M SO PROUD TO CALL MY FRIEND OPENED HER RENDITION OF ‘ EGGS ‘ THE PLAY IN LONDON IN 2019 WHICH I WAS LUCKY ENOUGH TO GET A FRONT ROW SEAT TO. LAUREN WORKS AT BARRY'S BOOTCAMP FROM 5AM MOST MORNINGS, IS RUNNING TO CASTING CALLS SENT BY HER AGENT BY MIDDAY, WRITING HER OWN TOP SECRET SCRIPT LATE AFTERNOON, TEACHING THE NEXT GENERATION OF TALENT AND CHUCKING A BATH BOMB IN THE TUB READY TO CHILL OUT COME 9PM. SO I'M ASKING MYSELF AND I'M ASKING HER HOW THE HELL DOES A CAREER DRIVEN, SUPER FOCUSED HELLA CUTE WOMAN LIKE HERSELF FIND TIME FOR LOVE?
SASHA: LOZ, GIVE ME A RUNDOWN OF YOUR DAY TO DAY ROUTINE IN FULL DETAIL, I WANNA KNOW EVERYTHING
LOZ: So everyday varies as I don’t always go to work in the middle of the night so I will give you two versions. This version is the ZOMBIE DAY. So I get up at 5am, my clothes have been put out the night before to save myself scrambling around waking my flat mate up with my boisterous ways. I'm normally ready, no makeup on for 5.20 , jump in an Uber which is paid for by work(THANK GOD.) I start at Barrys Bootcamp at 5.30 as I normally open up if not it’s a 6.45 start, both sound horrific but I have got very used to this time of waking up. Barrys is a boutique gym for intense training, classes range from beginner to advanced speeds. I work on the desk signing people in, making shakes at the fuel bar for their post work out fix and most of the time , prancing around to musical theatre jams and playing with clients dogs. I normally try to do a class on shift, as I'm all for the endorphins and I honestly believe exercise has become my saving grace! I am not a preacher but it just makes me feel all round better, the anxiety before the class is not cute but when I'm hitting decent speeds on that treadmill, I feel elated. I try to do this 3⁄4 times a week but I don’t always succeed. I finish work at 2.30, I go and grab a coffee from PKB, my favourite coffee shop. If I'm prepped, I've got my food with me... I then jump on the tram, and head to teaching, three nights a week. I teach dance, singing and drama. My classes are normally Jazz, contemporary and Kicks, leaps and turns. I am very lucky as I teach some of who I believe to be are the next generation of talent. With kids getting into GSA, Arts Ed, and Urdang as we speak, I get to train them to embark on this brutal career of rejection but one that is so addictive and an industry that on a good day I feel lucky to be a part of. I train the kids to around 8.30/9. I head home and catch up with my flat mate, cook dinner. I try to listen to a podcast on my journeys to or from work and wind down with a bath and cup of tea as well as copious amounts of Hobnobs. If im not working at Barrys in the morning, I tend to write on my days off, or if im lucky enough to have got an audition that week, I head to Waterstones ( my secret spot) I love the cafe in there and work on script material, or work on my writing. If its not a Barrys class, I try to do hot yoga or pilates. Thats day to day life, give or take a few meals out and the odd glass of red ;)
SASHA: IS THERE ANYONE CURRENTLY ON THE SCENE WHO MAY HAVE A CHANCE OF FITTING IN TO YOUR DAY-TO DAY?
LOZ: There is no one on the scene at the moment. If I am completely honest, the person I am today is unrecognisable from the girl I was two years ago , in terms of love. ...I was very quick to behave in destructive ways, going to the wrong places and searching for validation that was a clear cover up from the self love I was lacking. After a bit of a melt down two years ago, left me feeling anxious and questioning who I was as a person, I decided to write down all the things I am truly grateful for, what stresses me out and what id like to change. As cliche as it sounds, writing things down just puts everything into perspective for me. I started to really focus on my wants and needs , and as time has gone on, self love has become a part of my daily practice. It's not wanky stuff, and I don’t stand in the mirror telling myself ‘I LOVE ME’ , I mean each to their own but for me, its working out, buying myself that coffee/cake if I want it, creatively doing what I love, telling stories that I feel compelled to tell and spending time with people who are like minded. My friends and if that means someone I'm dating is on the same wave length as me, then brilliant. If I met the right person I would definitely try and fit them into my busy schedule and if it came to it, re juggle a few free lance things to make more time for them but for now, that hasn’t happened.
SASHA: IF THE ANSWER TO ABOVE IS NO, ARE YOU CURRENTLY INTERESTED IN A POTENTIAL LOVE INTEREST?
LOZ: I am interested and keen for love. I have always loved love. I cry every time I watch The holiday and I think being in love is one of the best feelings in the world but I would say that I don’t always make myself the most open to it. I put my career and my family before everyone and everything and LOVE does come last to me at this point in my life. However I get love from so many other people in my life, myself, my best friends and my family which I am so lucky to have. A relationship is not just a man , it is your girlfriends, it is the relationship you have with your father , sister , mother. I get so much from them relationships , sometimes more than a man will ever be able to give me. I think I have realised I spent some of my younger years accepting behaviour that is disrespectful and toxic and I have vowed I will never do that again so instead I have replaced that with all the other wonderful people I now have in my life. I have always been career driven , some would say obsessed but I do think I would not of had the opportunities I have had these last two years if I had not focused on my play, Eggs and building relationships in the industry with people who I look up too and admire. The time I have spent on myself and writing has paid off. I haven’t made them decisions to achieve an end goal , I did it because that's what I enjoy doing.
SASHA: YOU ARE SO TALENTED, AS YOU KNOW IM YOUR THIRD PROUD PARENT, WHAT IS IT LIKE BEING AN ACTRESS LIVING IN MANCHESTER?
LOZ: I love being an actress and I love Manchester. It has taken me a while to realise I am not just an actress though, I am Lauren , an auntie, a dance teacher, a writer and a shake maker by day. Sometimes , in the past , I had valued my worth by how often I was acting, if I carried on doing this, I would of ended up a very sad person. You have to be happy for the small reasons and acting or not acting , I can find happiness in the day to day things in life ie CAKE! Manchester has changed the acting game for me, I love London but I needed time out, it became over bearing and I was working to survive. Manchester has given me a better quality of life and I can therefore spend more time focusing on my acting. I am sure that is not the case for everyone but it has worked for me. I feel so lucky that I get to act. I love people, I love telling stories that I am emotionally connected too and I cant see myself ever not doing this.
SASHA: WHAT ARE YOUR VIEWS ON WOMEN PUTTING THEIR CAREERS BEFORE SETTLING DOWN?
LOZ: My opinions have changed over the years , I think you have to do what is right for you. For me , no amount of money would make me stop putting my career before settling down. If a man said you can have four million, but you can never work again , or create your own ideas then I would hand on heart say NO. I like the graft and I like the hustle and that's part of the love for me. I think that is the reason I am the way I am. I am not ready to settle down and I think maybe that's why I haven’t found love. I like to be on the go, I cant sit still and I don’t want to be tied down to one place or an idea. Some women's purpose in life is to become a mother, and I have huge respect for that. It is a full time job but I am not at that stage in my life. I do believe one day , I will slow down but not right now!
SASHA: DO YOU FIND IT IS EASY/HARD THESE DAYS TO MEET SOMEONE NEW, WHAT IS THE/YOUR PROCEDURE OF FINDING SOMEONE / GOING ON A DATE ETC.
LOZ: I think its easy to meet someone, I don’t think its easy to meet someone who is on your level.I think everyone could have a relationship if they wanted to, but not with the right person. I am not looking for perfect but I am looking for someone I can communicate with and that is hard to find. I want to meet someone the old fashioned way, I don’t use online dating purely because I cant be arsed chatting haha or having small talk. I like dating , but that's not to say I am a serial dater. I feel like I have a good gut instinct , and it has never let me down. I haven’t been on many dates where someone is on my wave length therefore it normally ends after 2 dates and I'm home for 9pm reads to watch love island. I am not looking for anything in particular but I am not willing to put up with a lack of respect, or games and lifestyle is a massive thing for me. Some people love to party, great but I love a candle , a brunch, a gym class and the odd wild night out dancing on the tables so someone has to fit in with that too and creatively they have to be open minded and excited to start new ideas. Until that is the case, I am happy being single.
SASHA: DO YOU HAVE CERTAIN BARRIERS/ RULES ABOUT WHAT A POTENTIAL OTHER HALF WOULD THINK ABOUT HOW CAREER FOCUSED YOU ARE?
LOZ: Unconsciously, I probably do. I don’t think everyone gets it but then it isn’t for everyone to ‘get’. Sometimes , I don’t bring up the acting malarkey because the first thing people ask is ‘ what have you done’? As if that determines how good of an actress you are. Unless your in the industry you will never get it, they wont fully understand the struggles, the rejections and the graft. To try and explain that to someone is hard and I think I have put up some sort of barrier of ever letting anyone see that sensitive part or me, or the vulnerable part that the industry allows me to feel. People are baffled sometimes by all my ideas and thoughts and what I want to do and what I need to do and that can put up some sort of barrier where I am not ready to share that part of myself.
SASHA: IN TODAY'S SOCIETY, WOMEN KICKING ASS IN THEIR CAREERS IS SO CURRENT AND OBVIOUSLY WE WANT IT TO KEEP THIS WAY, WHAT ARE YOUR KICK ASS CAREER MOTTO'S YOU GO BY?
LOZ: I honestly believe and live by, you have to do the work and love the work. I am genuinely a positive and optimistic person. I live by ‘ if you don’t do it, someone will’. If you don’t go and tell that story, 9 times out of 10 , someone else will. Be smart , do your research, have a reason and don’t do something because someone else is as that's not a reason to motivate you. Comparison is the thief of all joy and everyone's journey is different. I have tunnel vision about my end goals and I wont stop till I get there. I don’t think you can be too ambitious, people like to say that as they are not confident in dedicating time to the things they want the most in life. That's not to say , do shit for the sake of it. Be picky about what you invest your time in. Do you really want to do that? That Is a question I always ask myself. Try and be focused and enjoy all the bumps and the rocky patches. I am curious , I think life is about questioning things and being intrigued by people and events. I don’t want to live a simple life, I want to feel.
SASHA: WHAT DO YOU LOOK FOR IN ANOTHER PERSON?
LOZ: Humour. A laugh , a cackle most of the time. Someone who is open minded and who doesn’t stereotype. A good listener and someone who can communicate. If things aren’t going right, lets sort it out. Transparency is key and I like someone who can be held accountable. A nice back is also lovely haha!
SASHA: NAME THREE THINGS YOU THINK ARE IMPORTANT AND THAT A RELATIONSHIP SHOULD HAVE BETWEEN TWO PEOPLE
LOZ: COMMUNICATION, TRUST AND BELIEF IN THE OTHER PERSON. I HOPE YOU BIG UP YOUR PARTNER!
SASHA: DO YOU FEEL A CERTAIN PRESSURE AT THE AGE WE BOTH ARE THAT WE SHOULD BE AT A CERTAIN STAGE IN OUR LIVES AS OTHERS?
LOZ: I never felt that pressure and I don’t however I feel like people want that relationship for me. The first thing my friends ask me is ‘There anyone on the scene?’ No. There isn’t but I am writing a film, do you want to hear about that? Probably not because society doesn’t talk about women writing films but they do want to see a young girl find her happy ever after. People want for me what I don’t even want myself. I couldn’t be happier and more content right now, and I don’t say that lightly but that's because I am exactly where I need to be right now. I haven’t got an Oscar and I'm not on Netflix, but that's not the stage I'm at right now. I think people are consumed by what society wants for us and not what the individual wants for themselves. When I do start too feel any sort of pressure, I try to take a step back from the situation and evaluate, Are they my feelings or am I allowing other peoples opinions to effect me?
SASHA: DO YOU HAVE ANY REGRETS OF ANYTHING YOU HAVE DONE CAREER WISE TO GET WHERE YOU ARE TODAY?
LOZ: No. I always knew I did not want to be a dancer on the ships but I don’t regret it. I had the time of my life and more croquettes than I can keep count of. That year taught me everything it needed to and it made it clear to me what I wanted and needed to do. Not getting the agent I wanted at college and then three years later , I am signed to them. 2014 wasn't the right time for me but 2017 was. I moved back to Blackpool and wanted to get back to the city but life did not want that for me then an awful toxic relationship threw me to Manchester putting on my own play which I had no clue how to do, a year later I'm in London showcasing it, 4 MONTHS later I'm in two ITV programmes. I wanted all these things to happen as soon as I graduated but I am SO HAPPY that it didn't. I wasn’t ready , not in my acting but as a person. I know my identity and my place and what I want and what I don’t want. Sometimes its just not your time and that's cool.