Currently I’m Loving…(Vol. 10)

Currently I'm Loving

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I have been following Crystal’s blog for a while, so I was ecstatic when she announced a linkup, I was so happy! I love these favorites posts too, so it was a win-win situation! My personal (i.e.: work) life is picking up, so things may be slow on my personal blog, but that doesn’t mean that I don’t love you readers or writing these posts any less! I hope that you will stick with my journey as we close out this year and roll through the madness that is the holiday season!

Onward with the favorites!

I Am Now A Swiftie (I’m Pretty Sure)

Yes, I have jumped on “I-love-the-new-Taylor-Swift-album” bandwagon. The song “Blank Space” didn’t stand out to me on the new album as one of my favorites, but the video makes the song. It really does. I love a woman and satire, and Taylor Swift has done it with the Blank Space video.

Who else heard “Starbucks lovers” on the first listen? I know I did.

I will admit: I am not a fan of her earlier albums. To me, it sounded like she was constantly making herself the victim of the experiences she wrote about. My first reaction was, “Grow up,” and while I sometimes feel that, I understand that so many people relate to her lyrics. And connecting with music is key to helping it sell. But to see the way she interacts with fans on social media, particularly Tumblr, she is turning me into a Swiftie. I love how sweet and truly caring she seems to be. (I mean, who gets early Christmas presents for fans or personally drives a toddler-sized Mercedes to an adorable kid rather than ship it?) Most celebrities get more and more distant as they get more and more successful. Taylor seems to do the opposite with her fans. And I’m all for a girl who can be grounded, real, and grateful, despite her success.

Jorge Luis Borges

There was once a time when I spoke Spanish better than I spoke Japanese, much to my relatives’ displeasure. I am now trying to turn back the clocks and get that ability back via Duolingo. I remember staring at a Jorge Luis Borges anthology, trying to figure out how fast and how thoroughly I would have to read as I collected yet another textbook from the professor. At the time, I didn’t appreciate him, but with quotes like the one below, he’s starting to win me over.

“A writer – and, I believe, generally all persons – must think that whatever happens to him or her is a resource. All things have been given to us for a purpose, and an artist must feel this more intensely. All that happens to us, including our humiliations, our misfortunes, our embarrassments, all is given to us as raw material, as clay, so that we may shape our art.”

As a writer, this makes me happy beyond words. So. Much. Truth.

Growing up, my work ethic disguised the fact that I had ADD. Many people (read: friends) thought that the idea of my having ADD was an oxymoron; they were operating on the symptoms that were associated with ADHD. Since I wasn’t bouncing off the walls like Tigger, and I worked my butt off for my grades, many thought that I didn’t have it, that I was just going through “a phase.”

We know now that they were wrong. And because of that, I will always be passionate about mental health, particularly when it comes to that of young people and women. This article from Devex sums of pretty much everything that I wanted to say on the topic.

What have YOU been loving this week? Let me know in the comments!

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Currently I’m Loving

Currently I'm Loving

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Remember a few weeks ago when I was raving about Emma Watson’s speech at the UN (like 1.2 billion tweeters were)? I came across this really interesting read that offered a devil’s advocate perspective to her speech. It picked the speech apart following the 6-minute mark. As I was reading the piece, I was reliving my Rhetorical Criticism days. Given that that particular class turned out to be a favorite of mine (yes, I am a nerd), this piece made me happy. It’s always interesting to read opposing points of view. I currently have a couple blog post ideas marinating in the back of my head because of this post, so keep your eyes peeled!

And speaking of good reads, I’ve made it pretty clear that I’m a J-Law fan. So it should come as no surprise that her response to the nude photo scandal in Vogue made me very happy. I also finished Chris Guillebeau’s new book, and the review will be posted soon!

My inner bookworm was doing a happy dance when I read this article about all these studies about people who read actual books. I have always been a traditional person in that way (also, add to that the fact that I can’t stare at screens for an extended period of time)

I just discovered City of the Sun; I am in love. Part of me wishes I was still figure skating so I could choreograph a competitive program to their music. This is my favorite song of theirs.

What have YOU been loving this week? I’d love to hear in the comments!

Currently I’m Loving…

Currently I'm Loving

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The Shib Sibs YouTube Channel

 

As a former figure skater, the ShibSibs YouTube channel makes me smile. Maia and Alex Shibutani are world bronze medalists and 2014 Olympians in ice dance. They put up short vlogs giving us viewers a behind-the-scenes look at the lives of competitive ice dancers and cute little music videos and skits. I had the pleasure of meeting them (along with Olympic champions Meryl Davis & Charlie White) when I attended a competition back in 2010. They ( meaning all 4 of them) are the sweetest people ever.

Maia and Alex conceptualize, shoot and edit all of their videos, and I’m continually impressed by these two. I mean, balancing an ice dancing career with college is hard enough. But these two do that AND manage to interact with their fans on YouTube by giving them a unique perspective on something that so few us rarely get to see, let alone experience.

 

You Are A Badass by Jen Sincero

 

Since I started this whole self-help/transformation journey, I’ve done plenty of reading. And I’m going to be honest. I didn’t buy much into the books I got my hands on because so much seemed very woo-woo to me. Because I don’t believe that everything happens for a reason.

I had a friend recommend this book to me, and I bought the audiobook on iTunes. Enter the best self-help book I have ever invested in. The author wrote in a language that just made sense to me. She tells it like it is. No woo-woo needed. She explained a bunch of what I would have previously considered woo-woo concepts in a way that I just got. The audiobook is currently hanging out in my phone, and I listen to it all the time.

 

Doing A Brain Dump

 

In addition to writing gratitude statements every morning, I have been doing brain dumps both in the morning and at night. It’s a great way for me to start and end the day with a clear head without taking anything into the following day. It’s also a great way to generate ideas for blog posts. As I get into the rhythm of doing this more consistently, I hope that this will prove helpful.

 

Yoga

 

Doing things consistently when it comes to my physical health (especially given all the personal health issues I’ve been experiencing lately) is difficult for me. It takes me a while to get into a routine, and it’s so easy for a lot of us to overlook things when we’re crazy overwhelmed.

I have been getting back into yoga and Pilates lately. I tried some yoga classes at my local gym, but wasn’t really feeling them. So I turned to YouTube and found SO MANY great options. I’m looking forward to getting back on my mat consistently and making this practice a part of my daily routine.

What have YOU been loving! Can’t wait to see in the comments!

Image Credit: Gratisography

Currently I’m Loving…

Currently I'm Loving

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Emma Watson’s He For She Speech

Yes, the cat’s out of the bag.   I’ve always loved and respected Emma Watson. In fact I’ve kind of not-so-secretly wanted to be best friends with her. This speech was so on point. Not because I was able to identify myself as a feminist (because according to the definition presented in her speech, I am one) but because she highlighted the struggles of men. Women are not the only ones held to a double standard. And I loved that she recognized that. I could go on and on about why I love her, but that sounds creepy, even to me.

Essential Oils

I’ve been struggling with anxiety attacks and other personal issues as of late, and essential oils have saved my life. I hardly go to the drugstore anymore. These oils have been more effective than any pill I’ve ever taken. Anyone who knows me personally knows that I am very anti-medication. No, these things are not magic, but they’re a great first step in the right direction for me.

This Huffington Post piece on gratitude. I’m all for gratitude, but everyone forgets. that there are some things that we take for granted. This is a great reminder of the little things that we tend to overlook that are just as valuable.

Jessica Chastain’s interview about her new movie. I’m not one to usually peruse Yahoo, but this was a great find, particularly because I’m so adamant about my own struggles with depression. I loved so much of what she said in this interview.

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What have YOU been loving this week? Let me know in the comments!

Currently I’m Loving…

Currently I'm Loving

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The #fireworkpeople Twitter chat

I discovered the #firework Twitter chat through She is Fierce and attended my first chat this past Tuesday. As someone who struggled with self-worth in the past, this chat made me feel amazing. Check out a snippet of all the amazing discussion we had.

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That feeling of knowing you’re with people who really GET you

I’ve talked a lot about finding your tribe a lot on the blog. Yesterday, I attended a going-away dinner for a friend who is moving abroad. Although I was only there for a few minutes, those few minutes were invaluable. Sometimes when you’re in the loony bin, getting out of your head and being around people who really get you can screw your head back on properly.

I had been feeling pretty uneasy the entire day; those few minutes with friends and talking to them screwed my head back on straight. You don’t need to do any explaining. The people around you will not judge you. And that’s an incredible feeling.

Shiba Inu Puppies

If I didn’t already have an adorable Labrador/Akita mix for the family dog, I would love, love, love, LOVE to get a Shiba Inu puppy. How can you not love that face?

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Sofia Coppola films

Lost in Translation, The Bling Ring, Somewhere…I love all of her films for such different reasons. In an industry that seems to be dominated by male directors, it’s very refreshing to see someone like her out there. Her aesthetic is definitely not everyone’s cup of tea, but I love the fact that she seems to understand the power of silence.

Ed Sheeran

Okay, let’s be honest. I’ve loved Ed Sheeran for a while. I know I’ve said that I’m not a Top 40 pop kind of girl, but I really love him. In this day and age where auto tune seems to be everywhere, I think there’s something to be said for being able to create so many songs using just a guitar.

I can’t pick just one favorite song of his, but I have been listening to Give Me Love on repeat recently.

What have you been loving recently? Let me know in the comments below!

 

Currently I’m Loving…

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  1. Emotional Freedom Technique (EFT): I have never been a meditation kind of girl. My feet go numb after less than 5 minutes sitting on my legs in a Buddhist temple, making my ADD brain do nothing is next to impossible, and staying positive can be hard some days for someone who’s naturally cynical like me. On the rare days that I can actually set aside time to do it, I find it’s incredibly helpful. This video (warning: it’s long) does a better job of explaining it than I ever could.
  1. Shameless self-plug, but I recently wrote a feature on the TEDxSalford website that revolved around Stella Young’s amazing TEDxSydney talk that focused on physical disability. If you haven’t watched it yet, you should. It’s funny, I promise. This subject is deeply personal to me, and I’m thrilled that the piece is being received well.
  1. Stop, Breathe, Think: I have the free version of the app on my phone, and I’m currently loving it. You basically tell the app how you’re feeling on any given day, and it generates a few meditation options based on that. I love that it customizes the meditation options based on how you feel. I know I said I’ve never been a meditation girl, and that’s true, but I’ve read too much about the benefits of meditation to dismiss it completely.
  1. Last week, I mentioned that I was reading The China Study. I recently added another book to my reading list: The Happiness of Pursuit by Chris Guillebeau. I was lucky enough to attend one of his amazing events in Portland, Oregon last year, and it changed my life. How can a guy who runs a blog called The Art of Non-Conformity not be awesome?

So what are YOU loving this week? Let me know in the comments below!