Life Lately / I Finished a Book and I Liked It

As much as I would like to brag about my long list of completed web series and movies or the tons of dishes I made during this lockdown, none of those can compare to the pride and joy that finishing a book brings, at least for me.

You see, I’m a book hoarder. I’ve been to numerous book bazaars since I started earning my own money. I even went out at 3:30 in the morning once to get to the Big Bad Wolf bazaar here in Cebu. Sadly, I also have a habit of reading only a couple of chapters before moving on to the next book that pique my interest, mostly mood-dependent. It is either that or I have the attention span of a toddler. This is why I couldn’t help but dance to the first of many victories (fingers crossed) in my 2020 book challenge.

Being a fan of Mark Manson‘s writing, I’ve also come to learn one or two of his reading habits, which motivated me to finally pick up my phone (yes, I am also an e-book hoarder) and finish at least one book that I started.

He shared a tip on how to remember stuff you read. The secret is not everyone can do so, not even him which is understandable as he reads A LOOOOOOT of books, but he makes sure that he remembers what the book is all about; and when he wants to refresh his memory, he simply goes back to re-read the specific chapters.

I also read somewhere that it is okay to read a couple of books alternately, especially when you want to take a break from the first one. This tip might have been from Mark too, but I’m not completely sure (see?). All I know is that I couldn’t agree more, because it’s what I do with TV series sometimes. And personally, it works for me!

Upon reaching the very last word of this first ever pandemic book, first thing I did was to immediately log it on my Goodreads “READ” list. Book is Bo Sanchez “How To Find Your One True Love”, which I found to be helpful in love and life alike. His tips registered to me as life hacks too as most of them can be very useful in making general life decisions and not only in matters of the heart.

I am also proud to say that I actually bought this e-book along with other FEAST BOOKS (mostly about career and finance) during their website sale a few weeks back. These are probably the only electronic books I bought apart from the ones I got from this e-book seller on Instagram, @thepinkreaderph about 5-6 years ago.

While I am on the topic, I’s also want to thank Amielle for sharing her hack on how to find free e-books online. Thanks to you, my reader is overflowing with books that I can’t help but gush over and hope to read this year!

So along with my goal to increase my daily fluid intake, to work out at least 3x a week, write more blog entries and commit to my night time regimen, I am also committing to read at least 10 more books before the year ends! I’ll still be reading a lot of short form writing such as my forever favorite, MEDIUM articles and Mark Manson MFM newsletters, but I am motivated than ever to finish more books this year! Hope you do too!

Inspiration & Creativity

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Where do you usually get your inspiration from?

If someone cornered you and suddenly put you on the spot today and asked you this, what would your answer be?

Would you say, from God? from the greatest people that ever lived? from your family? from those geniuses that brought forth innovation and changes to the world?

or perhaps from a song that touched your deepest core (it’s redundant, isn’t it?)? or maybe from a great work of art, a movie that leaves you on the edge of your seat, a moving speech, a blog article?

While all of those are true and would probably be my answers too to that jerk who would be responsible for my sudden death due to a ruptured aneurysm triggered by him popping out of nowhere and cornering me just to ask this question (ang wild ng imagination!), I would like to say that well, God is first and foremost where I get my inspiration from, because after all, everything I mentioned right after Him came from Him. But that’s a given.

Also a given is my family, friends, loved ones or those people who go out of their way to help other people by all means, including their jobs, their creative work, their passion etc.

But had you asked me today, well, right before I wrote this entry, to be specific, I would probably say from the writers on MEDIUM. If you don’t have an account on this site yet, I suggest you make one. It will change your life forever.

Well, I might have exaggerated that last statement more than I should have. Though, I still have to say, signing up on Medium has got to be one of those precious “end-of-life-as-I-know-it” moments of my existence (not an exaggeration).

It’s not much different from Buzzfeed or Thought Catalog, except that I learn loads from Medium in terms of real life lessons supported by studies and research and experience, more thought provoking insights which don’t just circle around break ups and moving on, and perhaps more inspiration to get you moving or to put into action whatever you just read because you know that apart from your emotions, your thoughts have also been fired up! In fact, they even have articles that share the top sites where you can sign up for free online courses, articles that give tips on how to write more effectively and even articles that suggest great apps for productivity!

One more thing I like about Medium is it made me want to read more and not just more, but more substantial articles, which in turn made me want to write more, hence this uber long blog post.

I’m not saying that the other similar sites don’t offer such articles and don’t have such creative geniuses, because a lot would probably disagree, but I really want to stress on the fact that I get way more of these from Medium. Anyway, before this turns into a promotional entry, which it isn’t, I’d like to share 2 articles I read today that really inspired me to:

  1. Go after what I really want, and
  2. Become more introspective and self-aware to delve into what sparks creativity right within ourselves/myself

I won’t go far in explaining what the articles are about (although by the looks of it, I think I already have). You can read them yourselves. The first one being, “Give Yourself Something to Pursue” by Thomas Oppong. Judging by the title itself, you can already assume that it is a motivational/inspirational article, and a good one at that. Oppong authored lots of similarly moving articles which is why I’ve subscribed to his Postanly newsletter and followed him on Medium. He’s one of the best writers I’ve discovered, and I’m glad I did because his works are hands downs, my absolute pick-me-ups especially in troublesome, inspiration-less days.

And did I say that there’s an option for you to highlight words, statements or even paragraphs that you feel like saving, to read for later or to go back to in the future? Because there is. I did highlight quite a lot on this article alone because dayuummm, like what I said on the comment section, I really think that everything is “highlightable”. It’s either that good, or I’m just too emotional.

The other article I was talking about earlier (which is one of the recommended articles at the end of Oppong’s) is Jory MacKay‘s “Is solitude the secret to unlocking our creativity?. It is quite a lot to take in, a lot of Pyschological stuff, which made it more interesting, if you’re into that.

It mainly discussed how the creative process works inside our brains and how creativity is produced/stimulated through certain periods of……ten-nen-ten-nen-nen…, you guessed it right and it wasn’t even given away in the title earlier,”SOLITUDE“!! It also pointed out a lot of supporting discoveries by creativity researchers (which I think is a really great job btw), one of which I really liked, Graham Wallas‘ take on the creativity process that involved 4 steps: Preparation, INCUBATION (period of solitude), Illumination (the Eureka moment, which wouldn’t be possible if there wasn’t an Incubation period), and Verification.

I also liked the fact that creative thinkers were concluded to be BOTH “more primitive and more cultured, more destructive and more constructive, occasionally crazier yet adamantly saner, than the average person”. Ang gulo diba? Those are a lot of extremes!

Creative thinkers/geniuses were also concluded to have “an openness to one’s inner life; a preference for ambiguity and complexity; an unusually high tolerance for disorder and disarray”. We have Frank X. Barron to thank for coming up with these conclusions.

I find it quite comforting to know that there is an explanation for my tolerance for disorder. You see, I’ve always believed that artists are messy, so I’ve often pictured their desks to be chaotic, but nonetheless still very conducive to creativity. This is one reason why I appreciated this article very much. I mean, just look at my workplace below:

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There there! I told you it’s a lot to take in, but isn’t it worth the read? Anyway, if you noticed, I emphasized INCUBATION above. If I got it right, it is the most crucial step in the creative process, hence the title of MacKay’s article.

Wallas said that this is when the you let the unconscious take over the creative process. You let go and let the brain be. Isn’t God the greatest for creating our brain in such a powerful way that it can work without you having to give it commands? So basically, this period of rest, solitude, letting go or whatever you may want to call it, is significant because as MacKay pointed out, “letting go of your consciousness lets the deeper parts of your mind come in and make connections.”

Therefore, it is important for us to practice controlling our unconscious mind because this is how our brains develop or formulate the world’s greatest ideas. This is how the brain builds up to that certain point where the imaginary bulb lights up in our brains, and makes you cry out, EUREEEEEKA!!!!

There you go! That was my reaction paper for one of the most thought-provoking and another for one of the most moving articles I’ve read. Rume-reaction paper talaga! Gutom lang to!

So Imma go have my lunch now and maybe practice meditating so I can set out into the world to pursue my dream! Boy, these articles sure make a big and deep impact on my crazy brain!

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The Sunday Currently, Volume 8

I’ts Sunday again! I’m not too excited to go back to work for another 5 days but I’m glad I get to spend another day with my family (God included). I’m always looking forward to happy days like today should be and I’m also looking forward to some plans for this week.

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I try as much as possible to use my own photos for this series because I don’t want to go around stealing someone else’s and because I like putting text into my own and I never do that when I put them up on my photo blog, because who does that, right? eeerrrr almost everyone on tumblr? 😛 JK! I like my photos raw and unedited when I put them up on the other blog, but for this series, I try as much as possible to use my own photos, and make them look like one of those tumblr photos because we all love those!

Anyway, I’m talking too much again. For this entry, I couldn’t choose a better photo, because this is exactly what I love about weekends, getting up just in time to see the sunrise. I’m a self-confessed morning person and I try as much as possible to wake up early to get a lot of things done. We only get 2 days off from work and I want as much time maximized as possible. Plus, I feel like I only get to think and write clearly, very early in the morning or late in the afternoon til night time.

Reading

I just finished reading this Forbes article, “How A Couple Of ‘Frugal Weirdos’ Are Saving 71% Of Their Income So They Can Retire At Age 33” after I watered my plants. It’s one among those curated articles sent to me by Postanly yesterday.

Writing

I’m planning on finishing my 20th (?) entry of the 30 Day Writing Challenge today, so…

Listening

http://8tracks.com/mixes/1675794/player_v3_universal
<p class=”_8t_embed_p” style=”font-size: 11px; line-height: 12px;”><a href=”http://8tracks.com/garabs/sunday-mix?utm_medium=trax_embed”>Sunday Mix</a> from <a href=”http://8tracks.com/garabs?utm_medium=trax_embed”>garabs</a&gt; on <a href=”http://8tracks.com?utm_medium=trax_embed”>8tracks Radio</a>.</p>

on a Sunday morning, of course! I always look for playlists with a chill vibe like this one (with lots of Boyce Avenue and John Mayer and a bit of Maroon 5 of course) because weekend mornings should be really like this, slow and relaxing.

Thinking

About payday this weekend!

Smelling

I have stuffy nose atm, but I can still smell my aromatic Get Gorgeous tea 🙂

Wishing

I could keep this little bit (almost nothing left) of positivity inside of me alive!

Hoping

– My cold wouldn’t develop into a cough so I’m trying as much as possible to get all of the mucus out of my sinuses as much as possible. Too much info there, sorry!

– I could finish this little project a friend asked me to do for her and her colleagues by Thursday…. or Saturday, MLA time, I guess? Not sure about the time difference between here and where she is now! 😛

Wearing

The shirt I used to wear back in high school and a pair of workout shorts!

Loving

– Mornings I get to spend just outside my room where the air can still be very cool and Sunrises I get a better view of when watering plants later than 6am (coz on weekdays, I do this at 4:30-5am, so I only get to enjoy sunrises on weekends)

– This technique I learned on how to take multiple exposures with my camera. I was doing it wrong the first time I did it!

Wanting

– A tablet and I think I’m finally getting one soon! Yayyy! This is pretty shallow, but I just want one because it’s handier than this laptop and I get to read ezines or artsy ebooks much better than on any smartphone, I think? And I’m not planning on getting a phablet at least anytime soon!

– B and I are also drooling over this new phone we’re waiting to be released soon, so I want that too!

Needing

I need to set up the mat for my day 2 of the 7-day ab exercise I’m planning on doing the whole week and 3 non-consecutive days/week after that!

Feeling

sick! I don’t like having colds at all so I’m chugging down all those vitamins and meds because I desperately want to feel better before I go back to work tomorrow. I don’t like sneezing my brains out especially if everybody else can hear it!

Clicking

on Medium as usual!

and also on this Cosmo article (yes, I’m very shallow still!)

and on this coolest side projects article (also another Postanly recommendation!)

Blog Link here: SiddaThornton 🙂

The Sunday Currently, Volume 7

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R E A D I N G
I’m on the last few pages of my Elle Luna book, “The Crossroads of Should and Must” and I’m trying my best not to finish it yet, but I’m looking forward to buying another inspirational book, this time by Regina Brett.

I’ve also been doing a lot of reading, thanks to MEDIUM.COM and to Elle Luna. I have bookmarked and recommended a lot of articles and so far, my favorite is still this one. Medium has thought me to read more. Of course, there are similar sites like Buzzfeed and ThoughCatalog, but lately, I felt like Medium has definitely stolen my heart and also, has blown my mind.

W R I T I N G
write1

write2

I slept late in the afternoon yesterday and woke up at 10pm last night, so here I was doing stuff at 2 in the morning. 😛

L I S T E N I N G
I was singing The Beatles‘ “In My Life” and I was thinking, “Has any girl made a cover of this song yet?”. I went straight to 8tracks to look for covers and I found this instead, a whole playlist of Beatles covers and I couldn’t be happier!

I especially love “Two of Us” and “Golden Slumbers, Carry that Weight, The End” because I haven’t heard these two songs in a while, when I had been listening to them almost every day back in high school, thanks to my father!

Also listening to this Beatles + Disney Songs mashup playlist 😛

T H I N K I N G
carefully of what to purchase from The Craft Central! I’m drooling over so many things, but I’m doing this new thing of not hoarding too many stuff for now. While I’m on the topic of “not” hoarding, I’m also thinking of finally getting a pack of Quinoa, Chia seeds and Republic of Tea’s Get Gorgeous Tea since I’m about to run out of the Yogi Tea I bought last week!

I’m also thinking about the insurance plan sent by my friend yesterday. Looks like I’m finally doing this!

S M E L L I N G
nothing.

W I S H I N G
I could start doing what I must do instead of doing what I should do. #choosemust

All the best for my family, and loved ones especially for my lola!

H O P I N G
for brighter days in the next couple of months!

W E A R I N G
my boyfriend’s shirt, again! It’s my favorite shirt to wear at home and my favorite pair of shorts! – Was this the same thing I was wearing on my TSC6? haha!

L O V I N G
medium.com, Elle Luna, watercolor calligraphy, my Olympus photos (even though 60% of them were out of focus) and my mama’s Laing

W A N T I N G
Regina Brett‘s books and water brushes, Republic of Tea‘s Get Gorgeous Tea!

N E E D I N G
more time spent reading and practicing my hobbies!

F E E L I N G
even more awake than ever at 4 in the morning!

C L I C K I N G
on MLL 🙂 I’m thinking of doing this soon! I’m ready to make my own envelopes again!

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