My 10 Favourite Feelings Tag

Pink and Yellow Shapes Birthday Pinterest Graphic (1)I want to thank blogger Pooja for sharing this tag with me! If you aren’t familiar with her blog, then I highly suggest that you check out her creative musings over at Lifesfinewhine. A while ago, I promised her that I would [eventually] complete this tag which dates back to May 27. 2020. Even though I had good intentions and even jotted down a list on my phone’s virtual notepad, the note accidentally got deleted. I am now writing a new list which is in no particular order. Today, I spent some time reflecting on the things/feelings that make me happy. I purposely left out some of the obvious things like spending time with family and friends.


Rules for Award:

  • Thank the person who nominated you.
  • Share your list of 10 Favourite Feelings. 
  • Nominate other bloggers. 

My 10 Favourite Feelings Tag

1. Spending time with my cat. As many of you already know, I really adore my cat. I adopted him last year when I was dealing with major depression that was quite severe. If you need some happiness in your life or feel like your mood is $hit most days, then I highly recommend adopting a cat! Not every cat is friendly though, so take your time choosing the right one. Adopting a cat is a big decision, but it is a decision that you probably won’t regret! ❤🐈

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Morning cuddles with my boy, Timon ❤

2. Connecting with WordPress bloggers, both online and offline! I am very fortunate to have this blog, where I am able connect and chat with other like-minded bloggers. Blogging has been incredibly rewarding and it only keeps getting better. I never imagined that I would end up receiving personal emails, end up receiving snail mail, and even meeting Vee in real life, who is one of my favourite bloggers.

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Before I started blogging, I used to send snail mail to online friends on Facebook. I am still taking a FB hiatus and have no plans to return to that platform any time soon.

3. The smell of the Earth after it rains. Am I crazy, or is there a distinct, earthy smell after it rains? Do you know what smell I am talking about? Because that’s the smell I love! It’s a refreshing feeling after it rains ☂

4. Reaching a destination after walking for what seems like 500 miles. If the destination does not include coffee or tea, then it is a waste of my time 😂 Most of my destinations are food-related. If I didn’t walk to these places, I would probably be obese by now. I choose to walk even though I have a driver’s licence. Personally, I do not like driving a car and I will avoid driving as much as possible.

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This is one of my favourite bubble tea places. Even though I took the Light Rail Transit (LRT), I technically walked there. Since the COVID-19 lockdown, I have not taken the LRT 😷

5. Having fresh-cut flowers in my house 🌻 My mom lives across the country, and she surprised me with a dozen sunflowers for my birthday! Best birthday surprise ever ❤Sunflowers are my favourite flowers and I associate them with the month of August. They’re so sunny and cheerful. What’s not to like about sunflowers? 😍

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Not my birthday sunflowers. This photo was taken at my mom’s house, Summer 2019. Look how big and gorgeous these beauties are! 🌻🌻

6. Sunsets from my balcony. You do not need to go to the beach to enjoy a sunset. In fact, you can view beautiful sunsets from the comfort of your balcony or backyard. Some sunsets are quite stunning. My favourite kind of sunsets are the cotton-candy colored ones 🤗

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This is what I call a cotton-candy sunset ❤

7. Finding $$$ in random places. It might be money laying on the ground (I wish), money in my coat pocket, or finding money in a drawer etc. Finding money I didn’t even know I had is a great feeling! Once I found $200 cash while cleaning the house, which was money I made from Kijiji sales. I had stashed it in an envelope for a rainy day and completely forgot about it! I’m also bad for accidentally leaving money in my coat pockets. Once my mom found a $20 in my coat pocket, so she kept it. It was an old coat that I no longer wanted, but I guess it still had some value.

8. “Kodak” moments. Let me be clear about something: I am aware that I am not photogenic. My dad thinks that I love taking photos of myself but I seldom take photos of myself. Yes, I have a profile picture of myself only because I rather see an actual picture of the face behind the blog, even if that profile pic happens to be filtered. Most of the photos I post on this blog are my own, such as this adorable pic of Rebecca and Timon the cat 💕 I am really beginning to loathe royalty-free pics because every blogger seems to use them nowadays 🙄 #unoriginal

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Photo taken October 16, 2019

9. Donating/selling items. Knowing that my stuff is going to a better home is a very satisfying feeling. Meeting the buyer in person also gives me reassurance that my stuff is actually wanted, especially since I know that they want to buy my stuff. I find it much easier parting with sentimental items if I sell them, compared to donating them. For all I know, donated items could be going straight to the landfill, which I find a bit disturbing.

10. Spousal business travel. I really enjoy taking advantage of my husband’s travel excursions whenever the opportunity arises. Usually, our schedules clash and I have to stay home, but sometimes I am fortunate to join him on his adventures! That being said, I can no longer tag along on his business trips because of the pandemic 😭


My Nominees:

https://popsiclesociety.com/

https://simplychronicallyill.com/

https://renardsworld.wordpress.com/

https://mymartialpath.wordpress.com/

https://inhisserviceandlovingit.wordpress.com/

And….GO!! There is no pressure to respond to this nomination. I am curious to know what your answers are if you decide to participate! Whether or not you were nominated, you are still welcome to join in on the fun!

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Goodbye Materialism, Hello Happiness

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2017 was the year that I finally set myself free from materialism and it was the best decision I ever made 🙌.

Believe it or not, there was a time when I spent [most of] my birthday and Christmas ca$h on materialistic items in an attempt to momentarily feel happy. Over the years, especially during my college years, I learned that wasting money on impulse purchases not only burns a hole in my wallet but my bank account takes the final blow as a consequence for my poor decisions.

Luckily, I learned the value of money from an early age. My parents taught me that money does not grow on trees and if I want something badly enough, then I need to work hard for it. There is a misconception that only children are spoiled, selfish brats, which may be true for some kids, but I do not consider myself to fit that stereotype. Honestly, it infuriates me when people assume that I possess this quality just because I “appear” to be spoiled, whatever that is supposed to mean.

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Window shopping at the Mall of America in 2017. I left the store empty-handed even though these stuffies are cute. 🍌🎂

Be-grateful_Daily-Inspiration_The-Red-Fairy-ProjectA turning point occurred prior to moving out and living life as a 20-something independent post-graduate just trying to make it on her own, alongside her soulmate. Honestly, I could not imagine my life without my husband. I often wonder, where would I be today had I not met him? Would I still be living with my parents, hiding in my room all day, while caught in a mess of never-ending-drama-infused-quarrels among my friends, especially online? Social media was definitely my fuel for real-time connection, but was I really connecting authentically?

Unlike most of my peers, I try my best to detach myself from ego, likes, and popularity contests. Seeking approval and searching for happiness that is purely ego-driven is a pathetic way to live and sadly, too many people choose to base their happiness on external validation. I see it way too often, especially among my close friends, where their motives are purely ego-driven and they base their self-worth on the number of likes they get on an Instagram or Facebook photo. Personally, I am relieved to have left this realm where I no longer have the need to participate in this glass-ceiling dream of egotistical satiety or having to impress people I don’t like with stuff I cannot afford.

News flash! the ego is never satisfied. 😱

Throughout my young life, I have been trying to please other people and conform because I wanted to fit in. If normal is seeking everyone else’s approval while failing to love ourselves, if normal is relying on external validation such as the number of likes or comments or shallow happy birthday wishes we get once a year from people we barely know IRL, if normal is wasting countless nights dwelling on our past mistakes and wondering why we were ghosted by whatshername, then I don’t want to be normal. I don’t want that extra baggage weighing me down. The moment you realize that none of this stuff matters (external validation) is the moment you will set yourself free and start living a better life.

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I’ve only been to the Mall of America once in my lifetime and I would like to go back one day.

I am curious to know whether or not you embrace minimalism. Also, what are your thoughts about seeking social media validation? Please join the conversation and leave a comment below↓

Thanks for stopping by!

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S.L.E.E.P.S. 7-Day Challenge | Day 7

53893244-businessman-feeling-tired-and-low-battery-This is the final day of the 7-Day S.L.E.E.P.S. Challenge and I am happy that some of you want to try the challenge too! If you end up participating in this challenge, please let me know by sending me a link to your first day so that I can follow along. I am currently experiencing an ocular headache so my vision is really wonky right now. However, I need to finish the 7-Day Challenge regardless of how I’m feeling. I have a lot of respect for bloggers who write on a daily basis. How do you do it?

The rest of this journal entry is practically routine by now. I don’t know if I will have time to blog this weekend since the semester is starting to become more intense. After typing up a schedule for Term 4 yesterday, it finally occurred to me that I actually have homework to do. I am a visual learner so I need calendars and charts to keep me on track.

If you would like to read about the S.L.E.E.P.S. 7-day challenge, you can find my first posting here. This challenge was originally mentioned on a podcast called Operation Self Reset. The purpose of this challenge is to document personal progress, crush goals, and conquer fears over the duration of 7 consecutive days. Here is the breakdown from Day 1:

The acronym is S.L.E.E.P.S.
S – Smile: what made you smile yesterday?
L – Learn: what did you learn today?
E – Exercise: how did you exercise?
E – Execute (x4): what are your goals and what are you doing to achieve them?
P – Phone call: who did you call/text today? Show them gratitude.
S – Smile: what made you smile today?


Day 7 ~ May 24, 2018 tired-and-gaining-weightS – This morning was a blur. I struggled to fall asleep last night and I am still full of worry and doubt. I worry about clinical and keeping up with school. I tried to calm my nerves by taking a shower before bed but I still couldn’t fall asleep 😴 I also tried drinking some strawberry rhubarb parfait tea for the first time and it was delicious. I have several tea samples so I am planning on trying something new tonight.

L – Today, I learned a lot of new skills because I spent the day at my clinical placement. I have very long clinical days which is another reason why I wasn’t in the mood to blog tonight. I have readings to do for tomorrow and need to get ready for bed in a couple of hours. I cannot tell you what I am doing for confidentiality reasons, but clinical is interesting and scary at the same time. I was surprised by the amount of psychology that is directly related to the nursing field. I am actually starting to apply the knowledge that I learned from my psychology classes and I’m using it in real life!

E – I spent the entire day at clinical and have been awake since 5 AM this morning. When I got home, I had zero motivation to do any homework and wasn’t in the mood to blog. I should be doing readings right now but I’m too damn tired. I’m fighting to stay awake as I write this blog post. Also, the dress that didn’t fit me 3 months ago fits me now, so I must have lost weight. I wore this dress two years ago so it makes me happy that I am closer to reaching my pre-pregnancy weight.

E – Here are my short-term plans:
(1) Attend the [protest] meeting tomorrow
(2) Complete Week 2 lecture notes
(3) Finish EBP readings/worksheet for Monday
(4) Write Week 2 anecdotal notes

P – Yes, I actually made several phone calls today! I’m hoping to continue to build on my social skills. Also, I hope to improve my listening skills. If anything, I learned that I shouldn’t be too hard on myself. At least I am taking action by doing something about it. At the end of the day, I can feel good about stepping outside of my comfort zone and trying new things. I believe that uncomfortable situations will eventually become comfortable to you as you continue to make positive changes in your life. You will acquire a higher threshold for tolerance and over time, you will adopt a new level of “normal” in your life.

S – Treating myself from time to time actually puts me in a better mood. Think iced cappuccino. I don’t treat myself very often but if it’s linked to a social event of some kind, then I will allow myself a small treat. I went out with my clinical group so it ended up being a social gathering. Also, given the fact that I was suffering from an ocular headache, the temporary boost of dopamine and sugar spike did help.

Summary

Why did I try this challenge? What was the true intention behind it? Ideally, I wanted to become a more consistent blogger by writing consistently for 7 consecutive days, regardless of my schedule. Also, I was hoping to improve my social skills, focus on fitness, as well as brush up on my writing skills. Because the semester is still young, this was the only opportunity I had to partake in this journey if I was going to do it at all.

I believe that we should start journalling about our S.L.E.E.P.S. on a daily basis. The limitation of this experiment is the time frame. 7 days is not long enough to develop long-lasting habits or do deep reflective work. It takes a lot longer than 7 days to grow as a person and develop long, lasting habits. On a happier note, having the ability to envision your future and develop a detailed plan of action will help you accelerate your progress and enable you to get the results you desire.

I hope that you decide to try this challenge! 😊 Please leave a comment below if you are interested ↓ and feel free to link me to your Day 1 of S.L.E.E.P.S. I would love to read about your journey. Let’s spread some love while crushing our goals!

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S.L.E.E.P.S. 7-Day Challenge | Day 6

comfortableToday is day 6 of the 7-Day S.L.E.E.P.S. Challenge and it is bittersweet. In a way, I am relieved that this challenge is almost finished because my schedule is starting to get busy again. After this challenge is over, I need to complete a few collaboration posts (did I say that right?) that I have been putting off for way too long. But once I have published these posts, I don’t plan on posting for a while so that I can focus on school. You can still find me in the WordPress community but I probably won’t be creating much content.

Last night, I was in physical pain and had a difficult time falling asleep. I knew that there was only one thing to do – call the doctor’s office this morning. It is better to nip it in the bud now than to ignore it and make a trip to the ER later. My schedule doesn’t allow for much free time so I knew that I had to get this issue taken care of now. Like anything in life, nothing happens without action. You can talk about making a change but what good is it without taking action? Ignoring the issue or procrastinating isn’t going to make the problem go away, so you are better off taking care of the annoyance now.

If you would like to read about the S.L.E.E.P.S. 7-day challenge, you can find my first posting here. This challenge was originally mentioned on a podcast called Operation Self Reset. The purpose of this challenge is to document personal progress, crush goals, and conquer fears over the duration of 7 consecutive days. Here is the breakdown from Day 1:

The acronym is S.L.E.E.P.S.
S – Smile: what made you smile yesterday?
L – Learn: what did you learn today?
E – Exercise: how did you exercise?
E – Execute (x4): what are your goals and what are you doing to achieve them?
P – Phone call: who did you call/text today? Show them gratitude.
S – Smile: what made you smile today?

Day 6 ~ May 23, 2018 

S – Have you ever taken the time to appreciate the little things in life? This week has required me to tap into my emotional well being and do some deep reflective thinking. We are wired to avoid deep thinking and instead, we prefer to take the easy route, to distract ourselves, and to avoid conflict. By working on personal development in order to become your best self, you have to become uncomfortable. Most people don’t want to feel uncomfortable because being in a vulnerable place feels wrong to them.

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This is exactly why I love podcasts so much. Usually, I would dive into a good book but this conflicts with my best interests. I am trying to practice minimalism which means that I try not to buy paperback copies anymore. Besides, I never understood the point of a kindle when the iPad does the same thing. Over time, I have learned to embrace audiobooks and podcasts. I also find that I pay more attention while listening to a podcast than I do from reading a good book. This is how my brain is wired, and in case you are wondering where my advice comes from, I did not make this stuff up. Nobody on this planet is born full of knowledge. We learn from others. I can only tell you what works and what doesn’t from my personal experiences.

L – What did I learn today? To take action when there is a problem! My main reason for taking action was physical pain, and fear of being in even more pain by Monday. Don’t procastinate. It is only the mind’s way of playing a trick on you. Procrastination is nothing more than an illusion that tricks you into feeling fine when in reality, you will need to face the problem eventually. Chances are, the problem will escalate into a worse case scenario the longer you put things off. Now if only I could apply this to school work. I came up with a plan last night to make a chart on the computer that includes all of the due dates week-by-week, similar to the one that was provided to us last semester.

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Spongebob Squarepants speaks to me on a spiritual level •◡•

E – I saw the doctor on campus today and got some exercise. I could feel the tingling in my legs while I was walking home. Every day, I can feel my body becoming more and more toned which is definitely a result of my walks to and from campus. My clothes are starting to fit better and I am feeling more confident these days. If you are trying to lose weight, ditch the scale. You can tell if you are getting healthier based on how your clothes fit along with knowing where you stand in terms of Body Mass Index (BMI).

E – Here are my plans for today:
(1) Figure out a carpooling schedule for tomorrow morning
(2) Write up a document with week-to-week due dates
(3) Call in-laws to see how my daughter is doing
(4) Send some important emails this week

P – I haven’t made any phone calls yet because the day is still young. I am planning on calling the in-laws again to see how my baby girl is doing. I decided to write this blog post earlier in the day so that I am not overwhelmed by it later tonight. Tomorrow is a very busy day for me and I need to prepare for it. Also, I have been thinking about a family friend who is expecting. I often wonder how she is doing. As much as I dislike making phone calls, I really think that I should call her. I have been putting it off due to social anxiety but this is exactly why I should do it. Getting uncomfortable is the key to becoming a better person.

S – What made me smile today? Today, I talked to another student who is in my program and she was very friendly. We chatted for a while and I learned that we share a lot in common. Talking to her made me smile. In contrast, the doctor who accompanied me wasn’t particularly friendly. I could tell that she was in a hurry and didn’t tell me why she was taking my blood pressure, which is very unprofessional in my opinion. I believe that all healthcare professionals need to show more compassion towards their patients which should be their primary focus prior to providing treatment.

Will you join me on this 7-day challenge? Please leave a comment below ↓ and feel free to leave a link to your blog if you decide to join me. I would love to read about your S.L.E.E.P.S. Let’s spread some love while crushing our goals!

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S.L.E.E.P.S. 7-Day Challenge | Day 3

Today is Day 3 of the 7-Day S.L.E.E.P.S. challenge! I took an iron supplement last night but it takes weeks for supplements to work their magic. The iron supplement that I take is a prescription that has a higher potency than regular iron supplements. Usually, I am exhausted, but today, I forced myself to take the bus to the clinical placement. I got lost getting there but managed to find the location nonetheless. The bus stops aren’t conveniently located so I ended up getting a good workout.

If you would like to read about the S.L.E.E.P.S. 7-day challenge, you can find my first posting here. This challenge was originally mentioned on a podcast called Operation Self Reset. The purpose of this challenge is to document personal progress, crush goals, and conquer fears for a week. Here is the breakdown from Day 1:

The acronym is S.L.E.E.P.S.

S – Smile: what made you smile yesterday?
L – Learn: what did you learn today?
E – Exercise: how did you exercise?
E – Execute (x4): what are your goals and what are you doing to achieve them?
P – Phone call: who did you call/text today? Show them gratitude.
S – Smile: what made you smile today?


Day 3 ~ May 20, 2018 

S – Last night, I ran out of crackers and had to get creative so I made toast. Usually, toast tastes bland and dry but the bread is delicious. I also ate a few tomatoes and am feeling more energized. I’m trying to eat everything in my apartment before buying more food to include food in the fridge, freezer, pantry etc. Yesterday, I enjoyed a bottle of Grapefruit Perrier that has been in my pantry for months and it was delicious! 💖

Here is a big reason for me to smile. This morning, I received a notification that I reached a new milestone of 50 followers! Woooot! I would like to thank my lovely followers for joining me on this journey towards self-awareness and personal growth. Thank you for all of your support including your comments, likes, suggestions, and emails. This blog is alive and thriving because of you! 🧡 🧡 🧡

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Thank you for following Sereneluna and giving this blog some L.O.V.E. ♡♡♡

L – I learned that I still have cravings for steeped tea. I was planning to treat myself today if I found the clinical placement, but I couldn’t bring myself to do it. I could smell the aroma of coffee at a nearby Tim Hortons and I even sat in the chair by the fireplace. Just as I was about to buy a steeped tea, I left the store and took the bus home. I am only human and seek comfort food from time to time, especially since my family isn’t here. But then I remembered that I still have Perrier in the fridge it is just as good.

E – Like I mentioned above, I took the bus to the clinical placement and did a lot of walking. I walked in circles trying to find the place LOL. I don’t know what I would do without the GPS on my phone! Also, I hid the keyboard and remote for the TV because I have been spending way too much time being a couch potato. As tempting as it is to watch reruns all day, this activity is the king of procrastination. I won’t be watching any more TV since I haven’t been doing my homework all week. Oops.

E – Here are my plans for the rest of the weekend:
(1) Clean the apartment. Clean the dishes.
(2) Take a 3 km walk to MCDs for iced coffee
(3) The stove is still broken but I’ll live without it
(4) Write a to-do list for week 2 summer semester

P – So far, I only talked to my husband on the phone today and he sent me a very cute photo of our baby girl, my sister-in-law, and brother-in-law. I also received a couple text messages from acquaintances/friends but I’m in no hurry to keep the conversations going right now. Texting is dying and I find very little joy via texting these days. Phone calls would be more ideal but I feel like most Millennials are not inclined to call people.

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S – I am happy that I haven’t run out of food yet and don’t need to make a trip to the grocery store. I will put off grocery shopping for as long as possible and I have been eating mostly nutritious healthy food. Also, I am happy that I banned myself from watching TV because I know that deep down, limiting distractions will help me become more productive. Last semester, I didn’t have the TV and as a result, I was actually productive. Drop the excuses! 

Will you join me on this 7-day challenge? Please leave a comment below ↓ and feel free to leave a link to your blog if you decide to join me. I would love to read about your S.L.E.E.P.S. Let’s spread some love while crushing our goals!

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S.L.E.E.P.S. 7-Day Challenge | Day 2

Today is Day 2 of the 7-Day S.L.E.E.P.S. challenge! Like the acronym suggests, I am actually feeling exhausted today. My iron deficiency anemia has caught up with me yet again and I crashed on the couch this afternoon. A trip to campus and local mall this morning was exhausting for me and unfortunately, I wasn’t able to take the bus to find the clinical placement today. I wanted to go there and had good intentions, but battling anemia is another challenge. I think I need to start taking my iron supplements in order to be a somewhat-functioning human.

If you would like to read about the S.L.E.E.P.S. 7-day challenge, you can find my first posting here. This challenge was originally mentioned on a podcast called Operation Self Reset. The purpose of this challenge is to document personal progress, crush goals, and conquer fears for a week. Here is the breakdown from Day 1:

The acronym is S.L.E.E.P.S.

S – Smile: what made you smile yesterday?
L – Learn: what did you learn today?
E – Exercise: how did you exercise?
E – Execute (x4): what are your goals and what are you doing to achieve them?
P – Phone call: who did you call/text today? Show them gratitude.
S – Smile: what made you smile today?


Day 2 ~ May 19, 2018 

S – I did something spontaneous today and got my eyebrows waxed and tinted. They were unmanageable and I finally decided to pamper myself. I also got a second pair of scrubs for clinical and found some nursing shoes. 👠These shoes are funky and I was unsure about the pattern. However, I think that these shoes will help me stand out from the other students! These Alegria Debra Water Baby shoes are super comfortable to walk in because they have cork soles.

I shouldn’t be a Debbie downer but I lost my tracking mouse, which is inconvenient to replace. Ironically, I still have the marble and the piece that connects to the laptop, but it’s useless without the mouse. 😭 Everyone disliked my mouse because they couldn’t figure out how to use it. I am sad to have lost it during the lecture yesterday but my husband is relieved that I have to use a “modern mouse” now.

L – I learned that I need to start treating my iron deficiency anemia because it’s affecting my productivity. I also learned where the lost and found is on campus. I will check it out next week but I doubt that the mouse will be there. I pray that some kind soul returns it to its rightful owner.

E – I walked to the bookstore and wandered around campus today. I then took the bus to the mall and spent 3 hours there. This mall is kinda lame, however, they had everything I was looking for. By the time I got home, I took a nap and didn’t have the energy to leave the house again. I also realized that I need to get groceries or I will be living off of Kraft Dinner next week.

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Sorry MLP lovers but I am not a fan of ponies or cartoons featuring ponies. I don’t get what this GIF means. I like D.W. even though she loves ponies so she is an exception.

E – Here are my plans for the rest of the weekend:
(1) Take the bus and find the clinical placement
(2) Need groceries for next week or get creative with pantry food
(3) Let the landlord know that the stove is broken
(4) Clean the apartment. Make some overnight oats for tomorrow morning.

P – I called my mom today and also chatted with my husband on the phone for a while. I miss my husband and 18-month old daughter terribly and I wish they lived here. I didn’t talk to any friends today and I’m not in the mood to text people or check social media. I am feeling antisocial this weekend which is usually a sign that another depression wave is looming. Isolation usually makes the situation worse so I try to leave the house once a day.

S – Well, at least I left the house today even though it’s the only productive thing I did all day as well as writing this blog post. I always feel better after publishing a new post and will try to keep up with blogging during the summer semester. Right now, I feel like a bus ran me over because I am so drained of energy. Here is another thing to smile about: thank goodness for autosave. I accidentally closed the tab which is another sign that I desperately need caffeine!

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Will you join me on this 7-day challenge? Please leave a comment below ↓ and feel free to leave a link to your blog if you decide to join me. I would love to read about your S.L.E.E.P.S. Let’s spread some love while crushing our goals!

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S.L.E.E.P.S. 7-Day Challenge

Today, I was searching for new podcasts to listen to and I stumbled upon a podcast called Operation Self Reset. Immediately, I was hooked because this highly-engaging podcast focusses on personal growth and development which happens to be my favorite genre! There was a specific episode that made me think deeply about finding the motivation to gain more balance and happiness in my life.

By embarking on a 7-day challenge, this challenge will help me reflect on my daily activities and pinpoint areas that need improving. I want to do this challenge because I need to make positive changes in my life, and most importantly, maintain long-term positive vibes. I feel like the main points of the acronym cover all of the areas that I need to focus on. NOW is the time to start. Not tomorrow. Not next month. No matter how many excuses I have, I need to start this challenge today.

The acronym is S.L.E.E.P.S.

SSmile: what made you smile yesterday?
LLearn: what did you learn today?
E – Exercise: how did you exercise?
EExecute (x4): what are your goals and what are you doing to achieve them?
P – Phone call: who did you call/text today? Show them gratitude.
SSmile: what made you smile today?


Day 1 ~ May 18, 2018 

S – I don’t remember what made me smile yesterday because I had a bad day. I was so tired and lethargic and I slept for 12 hours last night. I was worried about my clinical next week. I was worried about my husband and daughter flying on the plane. I was praying that they would arrive safely at their destination. I was full of worry.

L – I learned about Family Assessment Models and Intervention Models in lecture today. The material is dry but I managed to get my readings done for the week. I was able to follow the lecture because I read ahead earlier this week. It is rare for me to work ahead so I guess that is something to smile about. ☺️

E – I walked to school and wandered around campus today. I think that the campus is big and my classes are spaced relatively far apart. Ever since moving to this new city, I started engaging in a great deal of walking. There is no need for me to join a gym because I get adequate exercise when I’m outside.

giphy1.gifE – Here are my goals for the weekend:
(1) Need nursing shoes for May 31
(2) Need another pair of scrubs
(3) Take the bus and find the clinical placement
(4) Finish cleaning the apartment

P – I tried calling my husband but he seemed busy. I texted a friend and she seemed annoyed that I sent her an article to read. I don’t like texting because it is difficult to read body language. Usually, I don’t call people unless it’s my husband or my mother. It will be hard to reach out to people through phone calls but I understand the impact of a phone call vs. a bland text message. At this time, I don’t see myself executing phone calls to friends yet.

S – I broke my Tim Hortons steeped tea fast today after my 21-day ban. Society’s belief system suggests that it takes 21 days to break a habit. However, I was miserable without my steeped tea and the caffeine withdrawal headaches were unbearable. It is not worth being miserable so I will allow myself 3 large steeped teas per week and the occasional iced coffee at MCDs as long as I walk there and back (3 km total distance).

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Will you join me on this 7-day challenge? Please leave a comment below ↓ and feel free to leave a link to your blog if you decide to join me. I would love to read about your S.L.E.E.P.S. Let’s spread some love while crushing our goals!

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Weeding Out Toxic Friends Part 2

This post is a continuation of Weeding Out Toxic Friends. If you haven’t read it yet, please read that blog post first.

Update: Since I mailed my letter to Jenna and she should have received it by now, I decided to write to Emma* as well. For their sake, real names won’t be disclosed. Lately, I noticed that I am mourning the loss of these friendships even though these girls hurt me deeply. Writing closure letters is a healthier way to deal with these feelings of grief. Hopefully, Jenna read her letter but I’ll never know for sure since I completely cut ties with her. It is likely that Emma will read her letter but I’m unsure whether she’ll actually feel bad about how she treated me. She’s extremely selfish and lacks any form of emotion and empathy for others.

Emma isn’t exactly the sharpest pencil of the pack, so I decided to dumb my letter down for her. It’s longer than letter #1 because I wrote out definitions and thoroughly explained things so she would understand it. I questioned why I often hung out with Emma because we were in completely different leagues, socially and academically. I’m an intellect – a high achiever, while she spent the majority of high school in special ED homework help class. Someone, please tell me how this counts as credit towards high school graduation?? She failed the grade 10 literacy test twice and the reason why we became friends in the first place. While she was taking literacy class in summer school, I was studying advanced physics to skip a grade. Her parents are teachers so it is puzzling as to why she didn’t receive proper help and guidance outside of school.

Dear Emma,

So we are not exactly “friends” anymore, but I think you have the right to know how I really feel. There was a time when I would have cared enough to send an apology text message begging for forgiveness. Now, I just don’t care enough anymore to say “I’m sorry” because truthfully, I didn’t do anything wrong and here’s why:

I do not appreciate being belittled by you, insulted and talked down to as if I am stupid. In case you don’t know what belittled means, “To belittle, means to put down or to make another person feel as though they aren’t important. Saying mean things about another person literally makes them feel “little.” To belittle someone is cruel ways of making someone else seem less important than you.” You belittle me all the time, and Jenna feels this way too even though she will never admit it. She pretends to ignore it, but I am going to speak up.

You may think that you are better than the rest of us, but news flash! You’re not superior to others. Do not text me again asking me, “What is wrong with you??” Do not send me anymore obnoxious YouTube music videos about flakiness. In case you don’t know what flaky means, it means, “an unreliable person. Dishonest and doesn’t keep their word.” I always showed up on time to our meetings. Out of curiosity, tell me how often Jenna bailed on you. She’s bailed on me as well, and that is the definition of a flaky person. I am not dishonest and will flat out tell you what’s wrong if we have a problem. However, lately, I have been stepping on eggshells around you, afraid that you will misinterpret what I said. I know what Jenna did to you the night you two went to Menchies (Recall: March 1, 2017). Remember how much it hurt you when Jenna and I went to Menchies and you felt excluded because you weren’t there? Think about how I felt the night you two went to Menchies without me. How is this any different than how you felt? It’s a sucky feeling to be excluded.

On the night you two were devouring your frozen desserts, Jenna randomly texted me while I was in the middle of writing anatomy notes. *PING!* goes my phone. Jenna hardly texts me anymore, so I was a bit puzzled by this random text message and assumed it was important. I open the message, disappointed to see that she sent me a rather obnoxious image of your frozen yogurts and tells me to “rate it.” Tell me, if this was sent to you, and it was obvious that you weren’t included, how would you feel? At first, I wasn’t going to reply to it at all, but thought, what the heck! At least she’s making the effort to make small talk with me right? I decided to send a witty reply, hoping to add some comedy to this otherwise ignorant text message. I shouldn’t have fallen for her trap but it was too late. I replied with a long metaphor comparing an innocent frozen dessert to social media and how everyone competes for attention on the internet, which you didn’t understand because this humor wasn’t meant for you. I was texting Jenna, not you but Jenna decided to make it your business. Jenna replied to me saying that my metaphor was funny but that’s clearly NOT what she told you. So what did she tell you exactly? That I was insulting? Wow.

What she told you was a lie, but this time I am not going to apologize for something I didn’t do. In case you don’t know what a metaphor is, it means, “a figure of speech in which a word or phrase is applied to an object or action to which it is NOT literally applicable.” You took it literally.

Here is an example of a metaphor: “I had fallen through a trapdoor of depression.” It doesn’t literally mean that you fall through a trapdoor.

Now relate this back to the original text message that I sent Jenna if you saw it. Do you get it now? I wasn’t insulting your dessert. I was in figuratively comparing two unrelated things and finding similarities between them and personifying frozen yogurt as if it was a person on Fakebook, Twitter etc. So no, there is nothing wrong with me, but thanks for the unwanted insult. (Now I am being sarcastic here. If you don’t know what sarcastic means, look it up).

Without the online/texting drama, I am living a much more peaceful life now. I am not telling people my personal business thanks to Jenna teaching me what NOT to do. What she did was unforgivable but I have already written to her. I am sick of Jenna’s sick twisted ways of manipulating your feelings leading you to irrationally lash out at me. Your behavior wasn’t necessary and perhaps our friendship could have been spared if you took the time to actually think before you freaked out at me. She plays you like a fool but you haven’t realized it yet. Honestly, I feel a bit sorry for you because you keep crawling back to her, and the drama/fights/back-stabbing continues. Your behavior and treatment towards me and others are not acceptable. What’s worse is that you don’t often instigate it – often it’s her who told you something to upset you, on PURPOSE. Have you noticed this trend? I’m tired of it. Over the years, it became harder to relate to you on a deeper level and our friendship was often “shallow.” One day we were Facebook besties, usually after a fight between you and Jenna. The next day Jenna was your bestie. A week later you hated her guts. The next week you and I were best friends supposedly. Often it seems like she is your bestie but you’re not actually her bestie. It’s not a 2-way street like she’s manipulated you into thinking it is. I can tell you who her bestie is, but I’m not going to gossip about stuff that isn’t my business. Like I said earlier, it felt like I was stepping on eggshells because you could snap at me at any second. You were quite rude to me, insulting my intelligence and acting superior to everyone else. Superior means, “to act like we are stupid and that you can do no wrong, that you’re ALWAYS right in every situation.”

There was something I liked about you though. You were willing to genuinely apologize after our fight last year. Jenna instigated the fight and manipulated it (of course she did…) but she never apologized for her behavior. Truth is, she never apologizes for ANYTHING. Remember how she would often bail on you and not show up when she was supposed to? Over time, she started bailing on me as well, canceling plans on me or not informing me that she was busy. It was really rude. But the biggest issue I have with her is the fact that she vanishes shortly after she starts drama. You’re open about your feelings when something is bothering you. Jenna on the other hand, wouldn’t say anything and would disappear in the middle of the drama. She wouldn’t answer texts for days, call me back, and would ignore me. The night you sent me that angry text message about the frozen yogurt, Jenna vanished. She explained nothing to me, that you were upset, or anything. No text. *POOF!* and she disappears and pretends to act like she knows nothing the next time she’s questioned about it. Every incident was like this with Jenna but this time was the last straw. I’ve had it with her bullshit and I’ve had it with you leaping before thinking. I am tired of being that “third wheel.” I want the best for everyone and don’t exclude people intentionally. I can clearly see what she did that night (and last year too), and hopefully, now you can understand my side of the story.

You probably thought that I was stealing Jenna from you but I wasn’t. It truly is unfortunate that I’m not friends with either of you now because of the damage caused. I have some good memories with you and I won’t forget these moments. I feel saddened that things ended the way that they did but I have no interest in repairing my friendship with you. It is exhausting and I am tired of putting my energy into a friendship that is draining me and putting me down more than it is lifting me up. The insults, the belittlement, the back-stabbing; it’s simply too much. I hate to say this, but my friendship with you has become unhealthy. It was really nice knowing you and being a part of your life, and I wish you all the best. I hope that you learned something from all of this and that one day you’ll find better friends too. Since it’s clear that we aren’t making each other happy anymore, it’s best that we go our separate ways. It was really nice knowing you all of these years, and sharing memories together. I wish you all the best in your endeavors.    –Hilary♥