If you have the same goal as mine, feel free to chime in.
I have prepared a weekday-approved workout sets that I personally follow from Mondays through Fridays, and these are strategically set to target muscles of the same area.
Depending on your strength, you can choose weights of your preference. I started with 1 KG weights back in 2016 when I started conceptualizing this out, and have moved on upwards from then on, to give you an insight.
The number of sets and repetitions are totally up to you too.
Initially, I began with 10 repetitions and 3 sets of each. Now I do 4 sets of 20 repetitions.
If you do not know where to start yet, you can first determine which goal you’d like to achieve.
Do you aim to maintain your current frame? Perhaps do 3 sets of 5-8 repetitions.
Do you aim to gain muscle? Perhaps do 3 sets of 10-12 repetitions.
Do you aim for endurance? Perhaps do 3-4 sets of 15-20 repetitions.
If you aren’t sure how the exercises are executed, Google and YouTube offers a shit ton of tutorials on how.
While I did mention that this is supposedly a home workout, in reality, you may also follow these in the gym.
And without further ado, let us jump right in to it! Let’s get it on!
Single Leg Dead Lift
Side Ankle Reach
Side Weights Bend
Alternating Leg Lifts
One-Arm Dumbbell Row
Wide-Grip Lateral Pull-Down
Bent Over Barbell Row
Bent Over T Raise
Around The World
Glute Kick Back
Kettle Bell Swing
Basic Calf Raise
Internal Calf Raise
External Calf Raise
Side Leg Raise
Floor Side Leg Raise
Side Plank & Leg Raise
Circles – 1 Minute
Side Lateral Arm Raise
Bent Over Reverse Fly
Alternate Front Raise
Military Dumbbell Press
90-Degree Lateral Raise
I hope this helped you with your goals! Let me know in the comments if you have any questions!
“We are what we repeatedly do. Excellence, then, is not an act, but a habit.”
We recently started the last quarter of the year. And I’m going to be a slave of my phone until the year ends, I’d say.
But not in a negative way. I am going to be using my phone to help me with stringing up habits. Habits that I tried so hard to get used to for this year but kept failing and coming back at one.
This time, I’m going to do a double-down! I’ll try twice as harder than I ever did before.
A total of 72 days. A total of 10 weeks. A total of 10 simple habits.
If I can make it, you can too.
Today is when I re-start as today’s exactly halfway through the year before I celebrate my birthday again.
I want to make a change. And I will end the year with a bang! I promise!
Will you, too? Ay! Come on!
You pick up a habit after 21 days, but I am pushing it further to make sure that these habits stick like a clingy ex-boyfriend who can’t get over me.
So I am taking a thorough challenge for my own improvement to serve as practice for the years to come. For a lifetime!
Please join me! I’d be delighted to find out where it takes us. Let’s go!
I started out the year fully energized and motivated, but as you know, those fluctuate more than a woman’s moods on her menstrual period.
Honestly, I need to be able to pick-up some healthier habits than what I am accustomed to.
Until recently, I still give in to junk foods. I barely get enough sleep. I am wide awake at night – tossing and turning, if not having a midnight snack.
My water intake is not sufficient. My hygiene is close to being non-existent. My skin is not only pale – it is also dry and flaky.
And my health is spiraling downwards faster than I could flush down a ball of hair down the drain.
I feel pain here and there – tension headaches, chest tightness, bone weakness – to name a few.
These are not only bad habits I have to shut and shun away, I need to expel them from my system and replenish them with better ones.
I’ll die. (I mean, we all would. Just that I’ll probably get ahead of all of you if I continue this way of living. And I can’t die yet, I still want to see myself as a Gorgeous Gardener Grandmother, so, yeah!)
How about you? This is the time for you to take a pause in reading further, and list down your problem areas.
I have tried a lot of things in the past – announcing my plans to the social media world – didn’t work. Joining group chats that will serve as my accountability partners – didn’t work. Told my family the diet I am doing – didn’t work. Downloaded tracking and running apps – didn’t work.
I kept doing the same failing strategies.
Or am I? Are the strategies really the issue? Or that there is just really something wrong with me?
I figured out, as eye-opening and pride-downgrading as it can ever be, that the problem is myself.
(It’s not you, Mr. Strategy, it’s me. I’m sorry!)
If I change my mindset and how I do things then maybe, just maybe, I can turn my life, and hopefully yours, around.
So I am giving myself a nudge. A nudge that’s as speedy and as heavy and as big as that rogue Bludger that broke Harry’s arm in Quidditch!
It is devastating to finally realize that at this age, I still haven’t accomplished these simple things I should have mastered long ago.
But in a sense, I did learn one thing new – that there is no one I can hold reliable to accomplish my plans but myself.
And this also goes the same for you. You only have yourself to hold accountable.
Nevertheless, here I am, blabbing out these stuff, in hopes that I can support you in your journey too, should you decide to.
And I highly suggest that you do. Today’s the oldest you have ever been, and the youngest you’ll ever be. Tomorrow’s never guaranteed.
Let’s quit being in this cycle of counter-productivity. No more chasing tails.
*smiles and lends out a hand*
I want to choose myself over anything or anyone at this point. If I am not properly equipped health-wise, not only tons of other things, but also people, will suffer.
As if I haven’t stressed it enough – I NEED TO CHOOSE MYSELF FIRST.
This will be our mantra moving forward. Say it out loud with me!
I NEED TO CHOOSE MYSELF FIRST!
I NEED TO CHOOSE MYSELF FIRST!
I NEED TO CHOOSE MYSELF FIRST!
(Okay, stop. Stop! That’s enough or we’ll receive complaints from the neighbours.)
Easy peasy lemon squeezy! Right?
For now, we will need to start to fully cleanse this machine A.K.A. our body, to get it revved up and running well.
And to do that, I need you to imagine exactly what, where, how, and who you want to become.
Once you’ve done that, think of the ways you can attain your goal on simple terms, and on a daily basis.
Since our strategy will be to gain small habits and gradually improve them overtime.
Now it’s time to list down all the habits you’d like to acquire to get to the goal of becoming whatever, wherever, however, or whoever you want to be.
To help you out, here is my own list and the habits I’d like to master, including my reasons why, and how I will do it.
Increase Liquid Intake – I suck at this. Big time! I think if there was a course for Dehydration Techniques in College, I would have probably graduated with honors. I wish to change this. I know there will be unimaginable changes that will happen in my life if I can do this.
STEP/S TO TAKE: I just need to make sure I do 15 gulps per drinking session. Normally, my thirst is quenched within 3-4 gulps. It may seem like I will drown if I try 15 at a time – but actually, it is doable. (Thanks for the tip, sis!)
Work Out 5x A Week – I have prepared a 5-Day Workout Split that I’d probably share in another blog. I already have the formula, I just need to do them!
STEP/S TO TAKE: Small scale workouts for starters just to increase my activity I’d say. I wouldn’t be too hard on myself if I can’t follow through fully. I’ll consider taking a 5-10 minute walk a work out. Even general cleaning at home. Or dancing.
Shower & Hygiene – “I’m not a perfect person. There’s many things I wish I didn’t do. But I continue learning.” Hahaha! I’d be a hypocrite if I say I never missed a day of bathing. I do, a lot. I’m human. And I stink! So I am listing this down here for goodness sake and don’t ask more questions about it. Yeah? ~_~
STEP/S TO TAKE: Take a bath. Brush my teeth. Comb my hair. You know? Those things taught in Kindergarten? 😬 Shame on me!
Learn A New Language – As I said, I am obsessed with languages and I badly wanted to be multi-lingual. I don’t know. It’s not like I will take on the world one day. I just want to.
STEP/S TO TAKE: It doesn’t have to be something in-depth. 5 minutes will do. Or watching a K-Drama will do.
Feeding Window Starts At 4PM – I wanted to still continue Intermittent Fasting but instead of One Meal A Day (OMAD) which is kind of too overwhelming, I wanted to give myself more time to consume food.
STEP/S TO TAKE: 4PM – 8 PM. That’s the only time I am allowing myself to eat. It’s not as hard for me anymore as I have practiced Intermittent Fasting in the past doing 16:8, 18:6, 20:4, OMAD or even Extended Fasts. So, I gave myself a little leeway on this.
Fasting Window Starts At 8PM – This is to allow myself to be ready for sleep, and for my body to be fasting for a longer period of time. Also so that I quit indulging in midnight snacks which is just so much fun, I don’t know why. But yeah. Gotta help myself. *snigger*
STEP/S TO TAKE: I stop eating at this time at whatever cost. Pronto!
Follow The Ketogenic Diet – I wanted to be fat adapted by the end of the year and make sure my body does not rely on Glucose to work, but Fat. Yep! I don’t even need to stay in Ketosis, pretty much, but I am not going to discuss the what’s and how’s of that for now.
STEP/S TO TAKE: Stay away from carbs, and keep it to a minimum.
Take Vitamins Every Day – I mean, let’s just get on with it. There are a lot of things my body does not produce naturally.
STEP/S TO TAKE: Drink vitamins.
Have A Nightly Skin Care Routine – “We are never ever ever getting…” any younger. Did you sing it too? I want to see myself having good skin for once in my life. Or at least better than what I have now? You know? Who doesn’t? I want to be the girl who has night regimes just for the heck of it.
STEP/S TO TAKE: Wash your face. Brush your teeth. Follow the 10-Step Skin Care Routine that you intend to blog another time. Hahaha!
Have Sufficient Sleep – This is one of my major troubles. Sleep. For the longest time I never have had any consistent sleeping pattern at all. And it is not good. I sleep roughly about 3-4 hours a day and always interrupted as I always jump up because I couldn’t get into deep sleep. I can feel how much my body is suffering. It’s tired throughout the day and wide awake when everybody else is asleep. I am very nocturnal! But I know I can turn things around. I should teach my body clock before it takes a toll on me if it hasn’t yet. I already experience irritability, mood swings, and pains. I don’t want it to come to a point where it is irreversible. So I want to start now.
STEP/S TO TAKE: Sleep at 10PM. If there are inevitable circumstances, make sure not to go over 12MN.
It will be nice if my friends won’t ask me out at this point in time to eat out and such as I try to develop these habits, unless of course if they are activities meant to help with my goals.
Daring and ambitious, I know. Aggressive and obnoxious, even. But please know that this is a dream and a goal. I know you guys will understand. ❤️
I’m actually happy how my family is very supportive of my goals and this challenge as well. They cheer me on, and even remind me if I forget anything or ask me what I should be doing at a certain time. Definitely helps! Thanks loads, you lot!
I have set out strategies you can follow through which I am also using myself. I call them:
The 3 Double ‘S’ Strategy
The plan is simple – daily training of simple habits I can surely follow through.
I don’t want to overwhelm myself as it may backfire. I am keeping it as realistic as possible.
You should too! Don’t think about very daring tasks/habits you feel like you can’t take on for a longer period.
Just learn simple ones first, then gradually add more as you move forth.
For example, if your goal is to have a ripped and lean body but your body fat percentage is still high, you do not need to exhaust yourself in the gym for two hours every single day. It might only make you give up right away.
Try to do 15 minutes of light work out first, and see how that goes for you. Or maybe run for 15 – 30 minutes if that’s more feasible.
Consistency is key.
It doesn’t matter if it is small. Once you achieve it, it’s not like it can be taken away anymore.
Small progress is still progress.
Once you get the hang of it, you can start adding more into your routine gradually until you can do pull-ups using your pinky fingers, alone. 😂
Lay out your day and plot when you intend to do the habits you want to acquire. Do it on the days you set to do it.
I, on the other hand, try to help myself out as much.
“How?” I hear you say.
Use An App
I created a new board in this app called Trello where I have laid out all the plans I have in mind on a daily basis – and what should happen hourly within the day.
I needed it to be that detailed as following these new habits will be intricate and overwhelming, so I wanted to do it on a schedule. Because if I don’t, things will surely get messed up. Imagine being awake around 9:45 PM and realizing I wasn’t able to do my work out for the day. That sucks, right?
Diet & Meal Preparation
While you might think this is an overkill, it actually isn’t. Preparing your meals beforehand allows you to stay on your diet and make sure you don’t go back to the cycle of eating crap again because your food is tracked out early on.
If you can also have a Food Journal where you can log your food, and maybe even track your macros, well and good.
It can also easily set your tone for the whole week.
I tend to be forgetful, so until I can master all these habits, I will need help from my trusty phone’s alarms.
Turn Off Distractions
While this may not be something new, please know that ALL my notifications in my phone are all off. Apart from my alarms and my work app where I can be reached when needed at work – I am not notified of anything.
I sometimes just check the ‘distraction’ apps on my free time, or when taking a break from work.
I don’t want my life to revolve around nonsensical things, and so I am trying to lean away from them. One good example? Games – virtual stuff that don’t add to my real-life progress. (No offense, gamers! I was once a gamer-girl of MMORPGs too!)
But yeah, turn them off or delete them, unless you have an awesome amount of control and will-power.
Doing this has greatly helped my productivity and focus. If it helps me, it probably would help you too.
This is also something I hope will get me through. Not only will it serve as a reminder of what I needed to do within the day, it also makes me feel accountable for the tasks listed there, and thus a sense of accomplishment as a reward every time it is ticked. Dopamine helps!
“You don’t have to be great to start, but you have to start to be great.”
— Zig Ziglar
Need I say more? Just start!
If you are ready to take on this challenge with me, just print out this picture above, list down the habits you want in your system, and follow them every damn day.
I initially booked this trip because I felt I needed to give myself a break from all the hustle and bustle of my daily routine.
As cliché as it may sound, I badly needed healing. So I tried to get lost all by myself in an unfamiliar setting in hopes of finding myself again.
If you do not know me, it is easy for me to get lost. I am bad at directions, and I tend to not remember a lot when it comes to places.
So this, indeed, is a big jump for me.
I’d like to walk you through what happened to me in Malaysia, and I have also included the money I spent for this trip, the schedule I created, and all its breakdowns for your reference.
I planned to stay three full days in Malaysia from Friday to Sunday. So I flew in from Manila to Kuala Lumpur on a Thursday night, and flew out from Kuala Lumpur to Manila on a Monday morning.
Being the freak that I am, I had to make sure everything is planned out.
In that sense, here is what I prepared beforehand.
17 Fly Out – 8:50 PM to 12:45 AM
Manila International Airport
18 Friday Morning
Around Kuala Lumpur
18 Friday Afternoon
Bus To Penang
18 Friday Night
19 Saturday Morning
Ferry To GeorgeTown
19 Saturday Morning & Afternoon
Around GeorgeTown / The Top Komtar
19 Saturday Night
20 Sunday Morning
Around GeorgeTown Island
20 Sunday Afternoon
Grab Taxi To Penang
20 Sunday Night
Bus To Kuala Lumpur Airport
21 Fly In – 1:30 AM to 5:40 AM
Manila International Airport
Here’s the total amount I spent for the whole trip excluding the gas / transportation amount used going to and from the airport. If you may not know, I am coming from Pampanga, which is roughly 2-3 hours away from the Manila International Airport.
If you are not an OFW (Overseas Filipino Worker), it is mandatory to pay for this amount before leaving the country. Make sure you have this amount ready in the airport!
For this specific flight, I chose Cebu Pacific as they had the cheapest flights available that fall under the dates I was free and intended to go.
CEB PAC – PHP 5,635.54
Here is the actual breakdown of the airfare for your reference.
Fly (Manila to Kuala Lumpur) – PHP 2,799.00
Fly (Kuala Lumpur to Manila) – PHP 2,836.54
AirBnb (www.airbnb.com) is my go-to site when finding a temporary home every time I go on trips or adventures. Not only it is cheap, it also provides value in a sense where functionality, cleanliness, and safety, for example, are carefully taken into consideration. It also has a wide range of choices for geographic purposes, depending on where you’re set to go.
Here is the actual breakdown of the AirBnB accommodation prices for your reference.
(Butterworth) May 18 – PHP 736.33
(GeorgeTown) May 19 – PHP 883.70
I do not thoroughly remember the modes of transportation I used while in Malaysia, mostly because around Kuala Lumpur, the Go KL Bus was there, which was free, and it can really take you around most of Kuala Lumpur’s sights already, so that was really a relief for me!
So essentially, most of my transportation we’re in Penang, and they were either via Train, a Taxi, or Grab.
It is very possible that I might have gone over my budget for this by just a tad bit, because of the extra cabs I took when I was getting lost, and also because I wanted to experience KLIA Ekspres which is really expensive, but was worth the ride!
I had at least taken down notes on the transportation to and from getting to the places I needed to be in. That is the Airport, Kuala Lumpur, Penang, and then back.
Roughly PHP 3,000
Here are some actual transportation prices in Malaysian Ringgit, for your reference.
Bus (KLIA2 to KL Sentral) – RM 12
Train (KL Sentral to KLCC) – RM 2.50
Bus (Merdeka Square to KL Sentral) – RM 1
Train (KL Sentral to BTS/TBS) – RM 6.50
KKKL Bus (BTS/TBS to Penang Sentral) – RM 35.40
Taxi (Penang Sentral to Taman Pandan Butterworth) – RM 20
Bus (Taman Pandan Butterworth to Penang Sentral) – RM 10
Ferry (Penang Sentral to GeorgeTown Island) – RM 1.20
Grab (GeorgeTown Island to Penang Sentral) – NO IDEA
Bus (Penang Sentral to KLCC) – RM 40
KLIA Ekspres (KLCC to KLIA2) – RM 55
I am just going to note some of the restaurants I ate in as I didn’t have the time to actually list down everything and everywhere I have gulped down food in one sitting, moreover mind about their prices.
*cough* Gluttony! *cough*
I have gone over my food spending for sure, but it shouldn’t be too far away from the budget I had in mind.
A very generous serving of breakfast, for example, is around RM 12.50. This is already comprised of a piece of Rolled Coconut Bread, a serving of Hokkien Mee, and a choice of either Nasi Kandar, Tom Yum, or Nasi Lemak, partnered with Coffee or Kopi and Iced Tea or Teh Ais / Teh Peng / Teh Tarik as it is fondly called, depending on which part of Malaysia you’re in.
Drinks range from RM 2.25 to RM 4.50. So it is very feasible to really get a taste of Malaysia’s wide variety of food, even on a budget!
Cendol, for instance, is something I suggest you shouldn’t miss.
Here are some actual food prices in Malaysian Ringgit, for your reference.
Boost Juice (KLIA2) – RM 13
The Famous Amos Chocolate Chip Cookie (KLIA2) – RM 11.20
NZ Curry (KLIA2) – RM 13
Potterhead Malaysia (GeorgeTown) – RM 36
Coco Cabana (The Top Penang) – RM 76.80
Pelita (Penang) – RM 23.50
Cendol – RM 6
Ais Kacang – RM 5
Durian Ice Cream – RM 5
Coconut – RM 8
Bean Curd – RM 2.50
Booking for activities was made easier by Klook (www.klook.com), thankfully! Before I head anywhere else, I always browse on Klook just to see if they have activities to my liking, that are usually lower than the price itself if you go directly to the place and pay there, which is why I love Klook. It’s easy, it’s convenient, and it’s cheap. Just a few taps from the app is all it takes!
I was even able to buy a SIM Card which is already 4G activated so I was connected all throughout my Malaysia stay! It only costed me PHP 400, and I didn’t even have to spend more for load as it was already pre-loaded!
I didn’t know what my budget is for this because it usually depends on what I like. It can vary.
Roughly PHP 4,300
Here are some actual Klook activity prices for your reference.
(Maxis) SIM Card – PHP 400
Kuala Lumpur Tower – PHP 1,221
The Top Komtar Penang (WT + AA for Foreigner) – PHP 2,396
Here is an actual local activity price for your reference.
Rent A Bike Around GerogeTown – RM 20
Kuala Lumpur is an epitome and representation of Asia as a whole and in totality, in my opinion, at least. I was taken by surprise by how diverse the people are in here – Malays, Arabs, Chinese, Indians, Filipinos, and et cetera.
Needless to say, of course, how the culture is softly mixed and varied where you can still tell which came from who. I made sure I immersed in it in all ways I could to fully utilize the experience. Indeed, Malaysia is #TrulyAsia.
The feel of Penang is that of a home town you grew up in and haven’t been in, in the longest time. It’s warm and welcoming with a spike of vintage hues. It makes me reminisce of my own hometown in the afternoons with children playing on the sidewalks, love songs echoing from the radios, an old man sweeping fallen leaves, birds chirping happily, the sun setting on pink skies, and the faint chattering of the neighborhood.
What way to better describe it? Ah! An awakened forgotten familiar feeling where all your memories just rush in, and you’re unable to contain the happiness and sadness of it all.
It is that of when I was bicycling around GeorgeTown where I felt as though I was taken back to my childhood. Glancing low on my shoulder is comfort. I was pedaling hard but I am at ease that I am looked out for. That, to me, is Penang.
The Top Komtar
GeorgeTown Street Arts
For more sights to see around Kuala Lumpur and Penang, I have compiled all my captures in a vlog which you can watch below.
Here’s a short vlog about my Malaysia voyage! Enjoy!
In the Philippines, it’s a norm for you to take home some token, memento, keepsake, or souvenir (However you want to call it!) as courtesy to the people you left from when you have gone to another place and back.
Usually, it’s that place’s specialty – perhaps a mug, a shirt, a tote bag, a postcard, a keychain, some food, or whatever else you can think of. Be creative!
I’m not the type to really bring home any of these at all, and you may call me stingy if you must. I am very practical and if I feel there is not a need to, I wouldn’t buy any.
Nevertheless, I brought home some fridge magnets, because YOLO!
I felt like this was a rip off though because I bought them from malls where prices were obviously overrated. When I saw them in the Central Market in Kuala Lumpur, they were like RM 5.00 for a set! Hah! Charge it to experience! I know better next time!
I obviously went over my budget on this one, but as I said, YOLO!
Here are the actual prices in Malaysian Ringgit, for your reference.
Fridge Magnet (2) – RM 21.70
Fridge Magnet (3) – RM 12.70
I thought in the beginning that this post will just be full of malarkey because this is only supposed to be a non-sense talk of my exploration in Malaysia, but be my guest and you be the judge. Here are my takeaways from this trip.
I figured I’m not really afraid of a lot of things. I thought I had too many fears I didn’t know I wasn’t really scared of.
Being alone, for example – I learned I actually like being alone, as opposed to what I used to think before that it was one of the things I fear the most.
Being in an unfamiliar place – I realized that the familiar places, in reality, were once unfamiliar places to me too. The same goes with faces and the company of the people who come in and out of my life.
Being uncertain of directions – I reckoned you can only get lost for a certain period of time. You can be found. You will be found.
Being afraid of heights – I found out that I was made to soar in the skies – and being there above – brings me unimaginable comfort I never once felt in my life.
Those were just some of what I have conquered for this trip alone! Thank you, Malaysia!
I also recognized that people are good, no matter how stern they portray. Although some are really going to take advantage whenever they can, so be cautious. Or some, have, in fact, just been caught in a certain circumstance. Still, I choose to believe that people are naturally good.
And then I found out that I, as opposed to what I used to believe, am kind. But that I have limits.
I have also understood independence – from making these itineraries, to asking questions, to finding my way by myself, to relying on my own strength and prowess, and to comprehending that I am by all means and not in any way short of being complete – I was freed. And I found myself.
The trip has served its purpose.
All in all, I spent a little more than PHP 20,000 for this holiday.
Before I left, I did have a lot of ideas and thoughts about me where I recently grasped that I have wrongly accused myself.
And I have learned so much things I know I will never be able to learn while sitting in front of my computer, nor scrolling behind my phone screen.
I have gotten to know myself better.
And those can never be replaced by no matter how much amount of money I spend on these journeys.
This is a shit post. Now it is up to you if you’d still want to go further, but don’t tell me I didn’t warn you.
I am contemplating about how I can break it to you gently, and then rudely burst your bubble afterwards. Because there is no easy and step-by-step way as to how.
Hate to say it, but you will feel miserable most days. That’s a given.
“So, how do you get over a heartbreak? Honestly, you can’t…”
Alright, you can stop reading now since you just got the answer you’re looking for.
“Rrrrr. Click bait!” I hear you say.
Nonetheless, there are things you can do to soften the blow. And if you’re still up for it, I’ve written them down below.
They say there is no other way around, and there is no way out. In the same way people travel for the experience, consider this another journey. Your journey to healing. You have to feel the pain. Only by then can you differentiate agony from comfort, and loneliness from happiness.
Do not be afraid of being alone. Although usually when being alone is when you feel the deepest seethe of pain, let it be. Do not be afraid of yourself. Accept yourself. Accept what you feel. Accept the ache – your ache. Accept your situation. Accept that what you are going through is something that will make you as a person in the future when you look back to it in time. Giving yourself time alone will allow you to get to know yourself better no matter how odd that may sound.
Make yourself busy. Keep yourself preoccupied. There are tons of things you can do, just look around. The bedsheets and the curtains – how long has it been since they were last changed? Is your kitchen sink dish-free? Can your toilet and bath use some cleaning? Is your laundry basket already complaining?
Be the person you want to date – or so they say. Get a haircut. Choose a career. Read books. Go to the gym. Travel. Get a degree. Converse. Pursue your dreams. You just freed yourself from something that might have held you back in a while. Now is the time to do the things you have always wanted to do.
No, you don’t need more tequilas and vodkas. Although you can divert to a whole lot of other things, be careful about the kind of diversion you choose to lay your focus on. There are tons and countless of diversions you can choose to fill in the gap and the absence you’re currently undergoing. Just make sure that it helps make you, and not break you further, as a person.
List down all the reasons as to why the relationship did not work out in the first place. And then list down all the reasons why you are better off not being in that relationship at all. List down all the reasons why you can make it out of this relationship alive, no matter how much it feels otherwise – for now. Carry this list with you and read it back, aloud, if you should, whenever you feel the ‘feeling’. You know what I am talking about for sure.
“Out of sight, out of mind.”
Can’t throw away the things that remind you of the person who broke your heart? Keep it somewhere where you can’t see it. The same goes for all the pictures within your relationship. You do not necessarily have to burn them off, erase them, or throw them away – depending on what you feel will help you. Because after all, all those are memories that were undeniably once a part of your life.
Where are your friends at this point in time? You can use some support system. Gather them all out!
Get yourself on a routine, even on the weekends. If you must, jot down all the things you must do within the day from when you wake up to when you get back to sleep. This will not only help you get into a routine, it will also help you accomplish little victories which are very rewarding and are highly beneficial for anyone’s well-being.
Now if I may just continue what I was saying earlier before you rolled your eyes on me…
“So, how do you get over a heartbreak? Honestly, you can’t. In a nutshell, you do not get OVER a heartbreak. You get THROUGH it.”
Now, do me a favor and remind me to re-read this whole article when my judgment is cloudy, and the days are a bit draggy.
I hope you are all enjoying this day, as much as I am.
The electric company decided to throw my very first surprise for the day, and boy, am I bedazzled!
Have any guesses?
Well, an 8-hour power outage! How bow dah? So uplifting! *sulky face*
Nevertheless, that does not take away my optimism for the day!
I have nothing grand planned. In fact, I do not really pay special attention to my birthday because I grew up that way.
Usually, I am content if my family remembers and greets me in an entirely cringe-worthy manner possible. “Happy birthday!”
But don’t get them wrong. My family, as wacky as they may be, aren’t a showy bunch. We all aren’t expressive, if I may generalize.
I remember one time, they greeted me on a plain white paper. Written in red marking pen were the words “Happy Birthday!”, and it was hanging on our peach colored curtain by itself in our receiving area, which is a good angle to be in, as I saw it as soon as I woke up and got out of my room. I have a feeling I just turned 7 then. Or 6… Or 8. Anyhow, I wish I kept that piece of paper. It was special.
There was also one time when I received a rectangular box from them, it was red and white. In front, a pink paper was glued. It was a letter from all of them – my family. Inside, there was a brand new mobile phone. If I am not mistaken, I was around 16 that time.
Apart from those, I only see the pictures in our album. That of my first birthday party that I can barely remember, where neighbors all around IV-B celebrated with us.
I’m still thankful. This is why I am also appreciative of the very few who remember.
Like when I turned 18, some friends who seemed like family back then, sang “Happy birthday!” to me, where my supposed cake were instead packs of cooked Lucky Me! Pancit Canton, surrounded by Nissin Wafers, (Hey, I am open to advertising gigs!) and had a candle in the middle the size of what you use on All Soul’s Day.
I swear, I cried. Oh, and not because of the gigantic candle, I promise!
But today, I wanted to celebrate my birthday, for a change.
In the most unusual way possible.
I have given it so much thought when I decided I’d give myself a gift of myself.
Oops, I caught you! I saw you did a double take.
A gift of myself to myself.
Let me explain.
I’ve been working on this gift for quite some time now. A gift I know I cannot instantly give myself.
Something that won’t happen in a snap of a finger, or a blink of an eye, or the content of my wallet all surrendered to the cashier. Something that would take too much time, effort, discipline, and perseverance. Oh, and patience!
A gift of myself to myself – a happier & healthier version, simply put.
Sounds like a tagline from a commercial advertisement, yeah? But truth be told, it ain’t easy, and won’t ever be.
You see, as a single mother of two little ones who always keep me on my toes, I am sure I can use up all the excuses available. And there are a tad load of them!
I mean, why?
Why when I am now 8 kilograms lighter than when I started?
Why when my Hangul is more fluent than it had ever been?
Why when my skin has cleared out a lot?
Why when my double chin is slowly bidding me farewell?
Why when my health is slowly but surely getting into tip-top shape?
Why when I can say “Jij betekent de hele wereld voor mij!” or “Ik ben een konijn, alstublieft oordeel niet, hartelijk bedankt!” without getting tongue-tied?
Why when my mood swings have lessened?
Why when my collarbones are proving me wrong about their non-existence?
Why when my spending has mellowed down?
Why when my kids tell me that I’m their star, their heroine, and that their love for me will see no end?
Why when my smiles are more evident?
Why when my hair – well, it has its own pace, but it’s getting back to normal? #ByeBlonde
What I’m only implying is that no matter how little, I see progress.
A progress where I am rewarded with a better sense of self-worth every time. A self I have learned to love so dearly and more than ever, since I began this journey.
So why would I stop now?
Now, that I engage in several activities in hopes I can maintain an active lifestyle.
Now, when I started indulging in personal growth sessions as much as I can squeeze them in my schedule.
Now, that I try to think, act, and breathe as positively as I could.
And now, where I am slowly ousting drama in my life, with the exception of Korean ones.
*sneers at the thought that I might have just dropped a really good pun*
*brushes my khaki corduroy blazers that I don’t actually have in real life*
So, that’s the road I am currently taking. #TheRoadTo30 *frowns*
That’s the gift of myself to myself. *smiles back at the wholesome idea*
You see, at this time and age, I feel like I am already halfway through my life. Who knows, right? And I don’t feel like wasting any moment further.
I only ever wanted to reach out and make sure people are okay. That they don’t feel alone in their loneliest of days. That they don’t feel desperate looking for someone to talk to yet no one is around.
It’s hard. But I’m here! And I should honestly make an effort to make myself useful. I don’t want to die living this way. I don’t want to live dying this way. I don’t want to be forgotten, just like that. I want more from life. I want to look out for people. I want to be the person to worry about them when nobody does.
And thus, I want to live a life of legacy that way. If not for everyone in the world, at least for people whom I know, or have been with, or will meet. I’m trying to make it up to a lot of family, friends, acquaintances, and strangers, even.
Mostly those whom I feel are like me.
Those who would take a lot to unravel their depths.
Those who have the same tendency as I do.
Those who built their walls too strong.
Those who raised their standards too high.
Those who set their expectations too unrealistic.
Those who shut people off.
Those who shaved their heads.
Those who went mental.
Those who became suicidal.
I’ve been there. In fact, I’ve been through so much.
But so did everyone.
Yet, if I could and have the ability to, I don’t want people to experience that. I do not want anyone to go through the same. At least not in my sight.
If you are going through that now, you’ve come to the right place. Consider this a sign.
When at times, you feel like your only escape is to end everything right there and then, believe me, it isn’t. There is hope.
“For all you know, the universe is rigged up into your favor.” I saw this in one article not too long ago. Very beautiful, isn’t it?
Whether you are experiencing something good or bad right now, know that when you look back after a few years, you would see how things have fallen in place.
I, myself, am slowly picking up the pieces and decided to live life as happily, as positively, as actively, and as openly as I ever could.
As a matter of fact, I created a standard of how I wanted to live my life – meaningfully, that is.
Hopefully, you will too. No, I mean, you should.
Small things. Ripple effect.
Let’s make the world a little more tolerable to live in. Shall we? Yeah? Are you with me on this? *grimaces*
I want you to know I’m here, if anything. Just reach out. Try me. I’ll be around.
Happy birthday to us, if reading this felt like you’ve just been birthed, and that you can start anew, with me alongside of you!
Obviously, I am already back to the Social Media game.
But there were certain points in my life where I decided to quit it.
And you may ask, why don’t you just literally take a break altogether and leave your Social Media profiles on?
I thought about that too. And in a horrendous amount of time, at that.
Yet I can’t. I have to delete them in totality. Knowing that they exist, will only have me access them back no matter what.
2013 was when I quit Social Media.
I seriously shut most of my communication lines down.
But from time to time, I do say hi. Here and there, I would create dummy accounts just to see how things are, and because I miss my family and friends.
If you were one of the people I’d like to get news from, I am sure you have experienced getting a follow from me on a dummy account every now and then, which I fully delete as well afterwards.
January 1, 2018 was when I created my official Social Media profiles again.
But why did I quit for four (4) years? Here are my reasons why.
I don’t feel obligated to like or post.
Usually, I get this feeling of being obligated to react on a certain post just because a certain person (usually someone close or significant) posted them. It’s courtesy of some sort.
In the same way how a friendship ends when you unfriend each other on Social Media.
Weird, isn’t it?
It’s just Social Media anyway, and shouldn’t affect your relationships in real life. Apparently it is the thing these days.
And it is, by all means, sad.
But going back, I decided I didn’t want to be a slave of likes, comments, reactions, and shares, whether it is my post or another’s.
It allowed me to use time more efficiently than uselessly scrolling in Social Media.
You see, we only have 24 hours in a day, and it is really up to us how we’re going to use it. I used to play MMORPGs aside from having games on my phone.
And I realized, there are a lot of other things that require my time other than seeing where this celebrity went, or what’s in and hot, and which restaurant is worth visiting.
I needed to get a grip of my life back.
I focused on:
Personality Development – Hygiene, Skin Care, Language, Work Out Routine, Healthy Food Intake
Family & Friends – I try my hardest to spend more time with my family and friends on a personal level and not just keeping in touch by tapping my keyboard or my phone screen.
Work – I found I can concentrate better the more I achieve things which I couldn’t do when I have other things cluttering my mind.
Vice – My only vice nowadays is Korean Dramas, but I often give it justice by telling myself I get to learn the language as I go.
I am not forced to go somewhere, or do something just so I can post them on Social Media.
You know that feeling, yeah? I know that feeling all too well.
Sometimes we do things not because we are used to it, or are comfortable with the lifestyle, but just because we kind of want to brag, or show how we’re living our lives better than the others.
You know how you’d buy something, or go somewhere just because you want to post them on Social Media? Or you shop and eat these type of things, because, they’re trending and viral? Yet deep within you, you know you care less about it?
I am guilty of this.
But I try not to do so, anymore, as much as possible.
I don’t want to create a make-believe life that’s good on the outside and rotten on the inside. I’d rather work my way inside out.
And so I quit, and reflected.
No notifications every now and then.
In pursuit of my personal goals, it was very helpful not to get notifications from time to time that Social Media is very generous about.
If people had to contact me, they can either email me or text me. But it doesn’t happen ever so often – which is good. It allowed me to focus more on what I should and wanted to focus on.
It gives me peace of mind.
Needless to say, after all the reasons I said above, giving Social Media a break gives you clarity. Our worlds shouldn’t revolve around Social Media. So we shouldn’t let our real lives be wrapped around it.
Since I have gotten back, here are the points I made sure of, so as to prevent what I initially intended to get away from.
I use Social Media in moderation.
If I do not have a special need to, I do not keep the application on my phone.
All notifications are turned off.
I access them on my PC, more often than not.
Did you, at some point, felt like you should be quitting or taking a break from your Social Media profiles?
It’s a thing for 2018 – these Instagram Story Highlights.
And while many of you are okay with the occasional highlighting of your trips and food on your Instagram stories, some of us are just way too structured to organize our own covers for all these highlights, as if the label itself is not enough. *raises hand and pleads guilty*
There are also those who are more than willing to pay $10 or more for a customized one, and in that regard, I am not one of them.
Say it’s frugality at its finest as you please, but I am more on the thrifty side (or at least recently), and will opt to do things my way if I know I can.
With all these in mind, I have put up some easy steps you can follow to create your own Instagram Story Highlights Cover, based on how I created mine.
How To Create Instagram Story Highlights Cover
First off, I went to my trusty old Canva account which is my go-to application whenever in need of anything creative online, and where I do most of my “Graphic Design” if I am giving it justice to call it that, or if I can deem it as a skill of mine, at all.
You may also use PicMonkey, Photoshop, and what have you – but they’re just way too out of my league, as Canva is very user-friendly. And when I say ‘very’, I mean I am too technically challenged to bother doing it elsewhere, and also, that I am dumb. #TechnoMoron
In Canva, you can choose which type of design (or size) it is. As for me, I opted for Social Graphic which is 800×800.
At this point, I don’t think they have anything set up for the Instagram Story Highlights Covers – yet.
And in my opinion, there aren’t too many people who will actually give a damn about it.
Just a few of us, surely. Including you, that’s why you’re here! Hahaha!
After choosing your desired size, you can click on Elements on the tabs on the left hand-side, and then Grid, then click the first plain picture without partitions.
Once you see the Grass-Sky-Cloud on your design area, you are ready to choose a Background. Click on it on the tabs again, and you will see that there are several free and paid versions, as well as just a plain color of your choice.
Next, it will depend on you on how you would like the covers to be. Do you like them worded out? Do you prefer icons?
Select Text and pick the size you prefer among the three given. Once you do, it will then be brought over to your work area, and from there you can customize its font style, font size, and font color. With mine, I used a feminine font that’s easy to read.
If you wanted icons on the other hand, go back to Elements and click Shapes this time. Now you can scroll over or search for your desired shape, to represent your highlights.
(Remember, this will automatically be seen in the façade of your Instagram profile, so make sure to adjust them to the same sizes, so the look and feel of your profile is on point!)
Once done, you can now rename your image by clicking on the Design Title, and Download them as JPG.
You may now either save them on DropBox, Google Drive, or any other cloud storage platforms, so you can access it on your phone.
How To Add Instagram Story Highlights Covers
There are two ways you can add these newly created Instagram Story Highlights Covers into your profile.
Upload them as normal Instagram Stories and you will be given a chance to highlight them using the heart-shaped Highlight button found below your Instagram story, add it to + New and then change its label as desired.
Or directly hit the + New button, and add them there.
Once they are all set, you can also Edit Cover to align all of them for a pretty sync and finish!
I hope I was able to help you through these simple steps. Show me how your design went!