Showing posts with label Relationship. Show all posts
Showing posts with label Relationship. Show all posts


I'm currently in my mid twenty's, living what's supposed to be the best point of my life, that is, without the global pandemic glaring in the background. I definitely did not anticipate that in 2020 and the series of events that followed.

When I was much younger, I used to think that by the time I hit my twenty's, I would have most things in life figured out. Spoiler alert, I still don't. But having said that, I do acknowledge that I've grown up a lot over the years thanks to the many hit and miss things that I learned along the way.

Still, if there was a way that I could have some things turned out differently in the past and present, I would. It might not change myself or what is to happen entirely, but I could at least be more prepared.

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Here is a string of advice from myself and friends we wished our younger selves had years ago.











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This post isn't entirely about past regrets nor is it supposed to be. We've grown past those moments and moving on. 

I've told this to a good friend, these advice isn't for us really but to those who find themselves in our shoes like where we used to be but didn't have someone to chip in advice they didn't know they needed.

I hope you like today's post. I'd like to thank all the contributors of this post for sharing your precious advice. I learned so much while curating this post. I hope I can do similar post projects like this soon!

What about you? What advice you wish you had or would like to let someone else know?
 

5 Games that Coloured My Childhood

25 March 2021

Taking a nostalgic walk down memory lane

Ever since I can remember, there wasn't a day that passed by that I wasn't elbow-deep in a game I played from the day before or I had spontaneously made up at that moment. TV was a great source for fun too but cartoon showtime was limited and so like it or not, I'm sure many of us kids back then had to take the matter into our own hands on what to do with ourselves. 

A very large chunk of my childhood was mostly in the UK although I can still recall the many other games I had while I was living in the quiet neighbourhood of Gombak, Selangor. I list down some of the games that had a big impression on me till today and ones that I vividly remember myself playing for hours with my siblings, friends and next door neighbours' kids.

1. Time Travelling Balcony

When we used to live in our cosy apartment, we had a balcony that was linked to our main living room area and separated by a glass sliding door. When my parents were busy working, we'd play that we were zapping through time in our time-travelling machine in the balcony. Each time the door slide shut, we'd pick a time in the past to travel to. Once we stepped outside again, the living room would became a mad bustling Egyptian market, a swamp with camouflaging blood-hungry dinosaurs or even a present day country.

2. Carboot Sale

On Saturdays and some Sundays where we lived in the UK, there would be "carboot sales" where regular people would gather in a large empty field to set up booths or just open up their car bonnets to sell off items they don't need from home anymore. I don't think we missed those special days to buy things that were mostly still very brand new and at a good bargain. We used to buy tons of books for just 10-20p each, they were so cheap! There were toys, kids clothes, furniture, etc.

As kids, we had a carboot sale game at home too! "Selling" our unwanted stuff between us siblings was fun. We mostly resorted to bartering or swapping our things instead of using our weekly pocket money. That's a very important currency to buy what we wanted on the actual carboot sale day. We still played this game years later after we returned to Malaysia although now that we're adults, we just swap our stuff and that's fine with us.

3. "Driving" in Our Backyard

Our little house in the UK had a tiny backyard. My sisters and I would take out our secondhand tricycles and bikes, books, toys and even sometimes set up our house tent when we were in the mood to play for hours outside. My favourite game was to pretend our bikes and tricycles were real cars and the uneven concrete ground was the road for us to "drive" on. One of us would be chosen to be the highway patrol police and take care of the traffic that went on in our backyard.

Couldn't find a photo of us chilling around. So here's something else!
We'd set up a small school in one corner of our backyard, a shop in another whilst a slightly bigger chunk of space near the red brick walls was our makeshift house.

4. Hand Puppet Shows and Singing Concerts


My parents, especially my mum take a special pride in our puppet shows and mini performance concerts at home. The latter was actually an activity our school did at least twice or thrice a year, and it only makes sense that we made it into a game at home too. 


My mum videotaped our shows with our old camcorder (this was way before smartphones existed and Nokia phones were kings), especially when we had friends staying for sleepovers. We would start off with singing performances by everyone; individual, duets or even a group of us, and then we'd transition to puppet shows with our puppets and soft toys that each had a name we fondly gave them. 

I can't remember where we keep those videos but I'll share some pics that we do have!

5. Outdoor House

In the summer and early autumn, our parents would help bring out our folded playhouse from the store and we'd set it up in our backyard. Usually, we would be outside in the sun all day until we were called inside for lunch and dinner. 



It takes a lot of commitment and imagination to keep the mood to play going, and it's no surprise that sometimes one of us would accidentally dose of inside the playhouse among the cushions and soft toys inside (it was crucial to make the house as homey and real as possible). For snacks, we'd have homemade ice lollies and cheese sticks, or whatever we had from the kitchen.


Now that you've read my childhood games, tell me all about yours! I would love to read about them in the comment section! 

What Happened to Our Hobbies?

11 March 2021

Image by Karolina Grabowska from Pixabay 
Yes, what has happened to my hobbies in the past few years? It’s something I question myself a lot now that I’m living in what it seems to be, a major year for having to be indoors almost 24/7 and making miracles out of my work and online classes from the four walls of my room.

When I think of hobbies, I’d imagine my childhood when I felt like I had all the time in the world after school hours or the holidays, and the weekends. I would think of my 10-year old self sneaking to the living room to catch up on cartoons at 6AM on Saturdays, then getting breakfast and reading books all day. If my siblings were up for it, we’d play imaginary games where we travelled through time and pretended we were sellers and “bartering” our possessions with each other (our pocket money was too precious to actually be used for transaction). 

As I grew a little older, reading, sketching random people’s portraits and the occasional blogging gradually became my go-to pastime. It could last for hours or maybe just a couple of minutes in a day. But whatever they really were for me, I always felt recharged and fulfilled afterwards. That was my safe space to be my complete self.

Feeling Guilty About Dropping Old Hobbies

Image by Juraj Varga from Pixabay 
To be honest, who doesn’t miss the hobbies we enjoyed back then? I do. I still feel the occasional guilt of not pursuing them further. Perhaps, my amateur sketches could have been harnessed to another level or I could have considered another area in arts instead. However, there was a time and place for them and I’ve now grown out of most of them (save for reading). 

In replacement to the ones I left behind as fond memories, I’ve discovered new ones to do in my spare time. 

πŸ’» Playing Online Games

I rediscovered my interest in gaming now that I have a decent laptop to play on, which also lets me meet new friends. I’m currently playing Black Desert Online (BDO) almost exclusively although I may branch out to other games some time soon. I’ve tried Genshin Impact on my phone and I’m really looking forward to getting back into the game this weekend! I found out that I’m not a fan of horror games although I still have a blast watching streamers or my friends play.

πŸ’„Testing Makeup Looks

When it comes to something related directly to myself, I really love trying out new makeup looks. I’m a hardcore fan of eyeshadows in particular because different eye looks can change your entire appearance or even better, bring out the best of your face. My current challenge is to find looks that go with spectacles simply because I wear one all the time. I focus on eye looks because the rims of the glasses sometimes hide “the art” beneath and not me (nor anybody else) can appreciate it.  

✍️Writing Story Prompts and Poetry

I used to write many stories and even the occasional comics rather obsessively when I was a kid. It was about creating my own world with characters I like and don’t like, and writing out how their beginnings and endings were to be. I left that little hobby for many years until I wrote two novels of my own at 15 or 16 and I’m slowly testing the waters at writing contemporary fiction. I’m not a great writer but it’s a personal project I love to do and share with others. Who knows, I might share some of my writings here too!

And poetry? Frankly speaking, I used to not like it. I didn’t have the faintest idea how people can relate to poetry and speak poetry because it has so many underlying connotations you would have to intellectually unearth. However, when I grew older and my love for reading developed with me, I realised if my spoken words can’t articulate how I feel about the things going around me, then poetry could do just that. Poetry is beautiful.

πŸ§• Blogging

I’ve been blogging since 2013 or perhaps even earlier than that starting with Myspace and then Blogger when the hype for this platform was over the roof. I remember that I used to blog about my visits to the dentist and getting my braces fixed, how my school week went, my pets (9 fish in an aquarium, 2 betta fish in individuals bowls, 2 birds, 2 hamsters), some peek of my sketches and paintings, vacations trips, my experience being sick in the middle of a school week (could hog the sofa and watch TV all day despite feeling drowsy from the meds), and so much more. 

The only difference about this hobby from back then and now is that I include better informational content when I can and I can take on product reviews. Honestly, the 15-year old me would have never imagined a small hobby like this could be so versatile.

And what about you? What are your thoughts on your hobbies?

If you like, you can visit and read this brief article When Did We Lose Interest In Hobbies if you've had thoughts about if our hobbies should generate us income or source of livelihood (when you don't want them to).

Thank you so much for reading! I look forward to reading your thoughts!

[Relationship Series] Coming to Terms with Myself

16 December 2020


10 Things that Make Me Happy at Home

19 September 2020


❤️ Love Poems For Her

4 September 2020

 

πŸ’”[Relationship Series] Can We Forgive and Forget?

2 April 2020


😒[Relationship Series] Does Insecurity Kills the Cat?

26 January 2020

Syazwani14Cats
Insecurity is a lot more common than we think. Between you and I, everybody in this world has some levels or aspects of insecurities they're clinging to. Perhaps for some of us, we're more anxious to break free from the many unanswered "what-ifs" questions we beat ourselves with. At some point of our lives I'm sure we've come to the realisation that our insecurities, whatever form they may be, are taking a toll on our lives and relationships, and it's actually exhausting to face it by yourself. In some instances, you might be so overwhelmed with these thoughts that you'd hurt the ones who you actually love as well.

Before we truly begin with the topic on insecurities in the context of human relationships, I'd like to just point out that I'm clearly not an expert in this sort of discussion. My own experience in battling my inner turmoils and talking it out with a few kind souls that I trust are enough to convince me that it's okay to talk about it in public. Let's face it, we've all come across the same problem a couple of times in our lives.

If you're not confident about yourself, then how do you expect to believe in someone who thinks the world of you?

I came across similar sayings like this in movies and even in conversation exchanges between friends. It strikes to me because it truly shows how insecurities can block a lot of good things into your life, including believing in yourself and others. I don't think a mere post can change my life for the better, but it could be a step to realising that I have a problem and that I can fix it... step by step.

What is insecurity?

According to Good Therapy, insecurities involves having a lack of confidence and self-worth that some people perceive about themselves in their lives. In some instances, being a little insecure isn't entirely a bad thing. Feeling a bit jealous or possessive that is expressed within a safe boundary is still considered healthy. However, the moment our insecurities lead to actions and make us grow more dependent on someone, it changes the game entirely.

When we're in a relationship with somebody without our self-worth, we give ourselves little choice but to depend on that very relationship to complete the missing pieces. When this isn't reciprocated, we break apart and that's how our relationship feel the side-effects of our insecurities.

Here are just some examples of instances that showcase insecurities by PsychCentral. Do you spot any that relate to you? To be honest, I feel slightly attacked with some (insert inner laugh-cry here):

  1. Pushing yourself to be extra nicer or giving to get someone's attention or support.
  2. More focused on pleasing others than fulfilling your own feelings and needs.
  3. Have a major fear of unwanted scenarios like rejection or abandonment.
  4. Can be easily overwhelmed with emotions and need the help of others to calm you down.
  5. Have trouble to express/open yourself up to others so you focus on their interests instead (can be overwhelming for that other person).
  6. Purposefully choose partners who you perceive as "distant" so that you need to work in getting their attention and ensure the relationship is intact. The downside? It pushes your belief that you're not good enough (you're working to make things work).

Sue me, I have insecurites. What do I do?

We've heard of this many times, but I'll put it out here to nail it to my head too: your relationship with YOURSELF is worth everything and that is why having awareness to form a better inner relationship with yourself is important. The success of your relationship with another person all comes down to how you view yourself in the first place, which will reflect your actions and behaviour with others. You may be a wonderful person to be with but your insecurities, if they're not pushed aside, can stop you from fully expressing who you are.

  1. If you critic yourself too hard, then change tactics. Channel that same energy to convince yourself otherwise. Remind yourself with reasons why you're an interesting person. There are people in your life who love to have you around. Tell yourself how your existence made a difference in someone else's life.
  2. Set realistic goals about changing yourself and drop your inner-perfectionist. You can't be a different person overnight. If you want to be better, you have to celebrate every little detail of you as you change. Even if you flopped a little, you're trying and that's always better than nothing at all.
  3. Keep your relationships with family and friends alive. You gain more strength in a relationship when you know you have a backup plan if things don't work out. Have steady, quality relationships with other people you trust that you can fall back to if things go wrong. There's more than one source of happiness in our lives.
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"Insecurity breeds insecurity" as Dr. Randi Gunther wrote in her article. This was used to describe an analogy or a consequence when our insecurities continue to be let loose even when our loved ones try to heal us. They would scrutinise their own worth in the relationship when nothing works or little of what they did actually made you feel better. There is so much that someone can do to help make us feel better. In the end, you need to realise that you have that upperhand to face yourself straight on and love yourself. 

😳[Relationship Series] I'm An Introvert

30 July 2019


Whether most are aware of this or not - I'm an introvert. I'm not sure if it's just me or this is something a lot of introverts face whenever we have to disclose what sort of person we are, but the reactions we get can sometimes be priceless. Some people who personally know me in real life think it's a far fetched notion and refuse to believe that I am one, while for others, it just makes sense. It's not that hard to picture me enjoying my time with small company, skipping small talks and chatting about something real and quietly excusing myself just to recharge my "social battery" with what a little bit of seclusion can offer.


Being an introvert has its many perks but to be honest, it took a while for me to come around and  acknowledge that part about me. One reason for this is because back then, I honestly didn't like being one. There's actually nothing wrong with being an introvert but the world seems to have a different perspective on that. They label us as shy, lacking of confidence and quiet. "I wish you speak up more" and "You're a little bit quiet, aren't you?" are just some of the comments I think we all have heard of before.

My point here is, we're not seen as sociable creatures in contrast to those with a more bubbly personality that everybody thinks should be the way for everyone else. However, I think it's funny that such expectations are there for us because if everybody is talking all at once, who is actually listening and critically analysing what is being said? And if everybody is talking, it just makes it harder to give turns for others to participate and contribute. We advocate things like acceptance of diversity among people but imposing the idea that being different or at least in this case, an introvert, is defective goes against everything we stand for.

Being an introvert doesn't make you any less successful than others and I think where I stand now is a good proof of that. I don't know if anybody has noticed this but the gap duration between when this post was published and the previous one is pretty big. It has nothing to do with me being busy but I was actually having a pretty hard time to talk about this topic in the best way that I can. It's really personal and that's what made it so difficult because I'm not used to writing about MYSELF.

I recently came across this website by PURE LUCK and for all the introverts out there, it is a safe haven to read up about yourself and know how much you're worth it. I wish I can whip up a better post but I think this is the best that I can do (for now). Until next timeeee, thank you for reading!
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Photo credit above: Georgia de Lotz on Unsplash

🀷[Relationship Series] What If You're The Toxic One?

9 July 2019


In today’s post, I’d like to dive in a little deeper to a different topic that somewhat relates to what I was talking about in my previous post: [Relationship Series] Be Selfish: Build That Self-Love. Loving yourself unconditionally is and should always will be your top priority and because of that, accepting your flaws is one way to prove to yourself that you have what it takes to be a better you. 

You know how we’re always told to avoid toxicity and the people it possesses like there’s fire burning at our heels? It’s true, we should, we must. But then again, nobody can truly run far from being toxic. I’m not validating or supporting the people who make our lives miserable because believing that being toxic is simply a personality trait is nothing but a terribly weak excuse. What I do believe in though is that as a human being, we’re all made up of a ball of complexity with all the good and bad bits that make us who we are. We’re not entirely perfect but there’s never real pressure to be one. Who needs to be? 


We may be a good or bad person (or both), but whoever we are, I think just about anyone can fall into toxicity – this includes ourselves too and at some point of our lives, we have to admit that there could be times when we may be contributing to our own hardships. 



🌼 You're Not Alone...


Personally, I'm guilty of this problem and I also know that the people I keep close have spotted several of my toxic behaviours. So, just as it is difficult for you to read this, it’s hard for me to admit my flaws out in the open too. My purpose to write this post is so that I can raise some awareness that toxicity doesn’t always have to come from somebody else. Sometimes, we can hurt ourselves and others more than we think. To be less toxic means we’re working to become a better person, to be somebody we would like – drama and toxic free. 



🌼 It's Not The End. You're Actually Getting Better!


Having somebody else like me to say straight up to you that “You’re toxic” is a tough fact to swallow. Believe me, it’s hard for me to accept that I can sometimes be THE problem too. To remember those times when I overanalysed situations and think the worst of somebody else. To giving excuses for myself and my accountability for problems I thought had nothing to do with me. To the times when I rationalised that somebody else’s pain could never triumph over my own. 


The problem when you start realising you’re toxic is that the guilt can be terribly overwhelming. But it’s okay to feel those things because self-awareness doesn’t come easy. Being mature about yourself is to admit that you can be imperfect and knowing that there’s always a way to work on them. However, being toxic means deflecting that possibility. 

🌼 How Do I Spot Toxicity When I See It?


You don’t. Well, at least it’s not as obvious as you think it is. Just as Chelsy Ranard described in The Ladders, toxicity can mean how you make people feel and the kind of vibes you’re sending them. Some of the signs you may spot may include these:

πŸ’€ You tend to exercise control over others

πŸ’€ Blame others first for your problems
πŸ’€ It's not easy to let go of the things or people that hurt you
πŸ’€ You express love or admiration when you're after something
πŸ’€ It's hard to admit you can be wrong to someone
πŸ’€ Listening patiently to others is hard
πŸ’€ Many people have little to compliment about you and you make many enemies, etc.

How we can be toxic isn't only limited in romantic relationships. It can happen in family relationships, friendships, work relationships, etc. Even if we're completely toxic-free with our partner or friends, it might not be the same case with somebody else we know. Sometimes, we let ourselves get carried away with being toxic because we think we have little to lose.


🌼 Life Isn't Over Yet. You Can Turn Things The Right Way Around.

I'd like to remind us again that we're not perfect, nobody is. Realising that we're a toxic person doesn't mean that our fates are sealed to become one forever. We can change that and it starts from doing something about it. Toxic behaviours are learned but we can also remove them over time. We can start with stopping from gossiping, being less rude to have attention and respect, avoiding judging others and assuming without basis, quitting on acting out on our emotions and anger and reminding ourselves to start noticing the effects our actions and words have on others and how we react to that. 

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Toxicity can affect even the best of us. Breaking ourselves away from its chains cannot happen overnight because these things naturally take time. Remind yourself as you break one chain at a time that we can only be happier once we let go of the things that keep the best of life away. 


References:
1. The List 
2. Medium 
3. Mind Body Green 
4. The Ladders 

πŸ’–[Relationship Series] Be Selfish: Build That Self-Love

27 June 2019


Loving others comes easy but when it's about applying that same feeling to ourselves, it's complicated and sometimes we take ourselves for granted. Perhaps the feeling comes more easily when it's about overlooking whatever faults or imperfections others may have, but we can't be equally generous in forgiving ourselves. I think it comes from the urgency to be better, to be the best image of perfection we can be and because of that, anything less simply won't do.

I never thought there'd come a day I'll be writing on something like this. Not ever and for many good reasons with one in particular - I'm battling my own uninvited demons from time to time. With something like that going on, it's hard to convince myself that I can be THE person who gives people bits of advices on how they should handle theirs. Despite that, this may be a step for me to see myself in a better light and because so many of us are also similarly facing the same thing, perhaps we can talk about how to better ourselves in terms of giving the heart a break and some love. 

But do take note that this post isn't going to be a mindblowing post from me nor can I guarantee that it will it heal your hearts. I can only hope that it will help you to know that you're not alone. For you to be happier, it has to start from you and you should never be the person to give up on yourself. With that in mind, here are a few points for us to think about on our way to self-love and self-acceptance:

🌼 Perfection? Oh, we don't know her...         

One problem that we unconsciously do to ourselves is setting conditions to our self-love. To let yourself go and be happy, you need to first lose some weight, get those As, land that dream job you've always wanted and the list goes on. Of course, there's nothing wrong to have a list of goals you want to achieve someday, but it doesn't mean you can't appreciate the human being you are as of this moment. We also sometimes forget that not being able to achieve any of these things doesn't make us a failure either. Some things just take more time and a few more attempts to work before we can get them. At one point, you either get them or don't... or something better appears in its place.

I think personally, this is an advice that's the hardest for me to swallow and accept. This is simply because I've always been driven to be the best at whatever I do. Failing to meet the standards I've set for myself means I've lost and getting back up to try again would be impossible. And sometimes, I feel that I need to fulfil expectations of others when really, putting myself first and what matters to me the most should be the priority.

🌼 Sometimes, it's a matter of choice...

Image result for choices gif

Leah Davis in The Sweetest Way wrote:
When you’re making poor choices, choices that defy what you know in your heart to be right, you never will know self-love.
It's hard to love yourself when you don't make good choices in your life. We make it an impossible task to see what's there to love about ourselves when our choices don't define who we are. It's true, we don't have any control of what's to happen to us but we do have the power over ourselves and how we deal with different circumstances. Making choices we don't feel are right can lead to a never-ending cycle of guilt and frustration, and self-love may seem to be the last thing you think you're entitled to.

Occasionally I've been in that situation before where making the bad choices seem the easiest way out in dealing with my problems. Later I learnt that sometimes the good choices aren't easy to take up but when I do, I feel proud of myself. For once, I think I'm back on track at figuring out life.

🌼 Express how you feel...

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Although I'm still working on self-love, I've noticed that opening up my feelings to those who I trust makes things a little more bearable. It took a lot of advices and assurances to be drilled into my head that it's okay to unburden all those feelings to someone else who can share it with me. Saying "I'm fine" which mirrors the exact opposite of how I feel makes me feel more alone and it doesn't solve my problems either. Of course, it takes time for me to even disclose my feelings because I like to get a hold of myself first. Everybody has their own timeline and different methods work differently for each of us. This may be difficult for some people such as it is for me but opening up to others doesn't make you more vulnerable. I think its a step to honesty and embracing your feelings, both the good and bad. 

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When it comes to learning to love yourself and accepting the beautiful version that you are, it takes time and consistency not only on your part but the people around you too.
We need to be taught to love aspects of ourselves—again and again—by the people around us.