BOOK: Milk and Honey by Rupi Kaur


GOODREADS: Milk and honey’ is a collection of poetry and prose about survival. About the experience of violence, abuse, love, loss, and femininity. It is split into four chapters, and each chapter serves a different purpose. Deals with a different pain. Heals a different heartache. ‘milk and honey’ takes readers through a journey of the most bitter moments in life and finds sweetness in them because there is sweetness everywhere if you are just willing to look.

  • He placed his hands on my mind before reaching for my waist, my hips or my lips. He didn’t call me beautiful first, he called me exquisite.
  • You might not have been my first love but you were the love that made all the other loves irrelevant.
  • You’d rather have the darkest parts of him than have nothing.
  • It must hurt to know I am your most beautiful regret.
  • You must not have to make them want you. They must want you themselves.
  • The thing worth holding on to would not have let go.
  • When you are broken and he has left you, do not question whether you were enough. The problem was, you were so enough he was not able to carry it.
  • I will not have you build me into your life when what I want is to build a life with you.
  • I don’t want to be friends with you. I want all of you.
  • Accept yourself as you were designed.
  • Losing you was the becoming of myself.
  • The world gives you so much pain and here you are, making gold of it.
  • You must never trade honest for relatability.

To be quite honest, I was a bit disappointed. I guess, maybe because I was in complete awe of the other book, the sun and her flowers that I expected so much more from this. There are some I was able to relate with, but overall, the bookmarks can be counted. (if you know what I mean. But then again, I would still read her books. ❤

PONDER: All of us


We all have shit days every now and then. All of us. No matter how perfect we aspire to be, and no matter how many tings we promised ourselves we would do, sometimes all the things we wanted to achieve just can’t happen in one day and that is perfectly okay. – momentary happiness

 

PONDER: Be your own Hero


These are not my words. It’s something I want to share and keep here so I can read it whenever I need to be reminded.

Don’t stop being who you want to be – who you’re willing to become – just because people have a painting of who you’re mapped out to be. Focus on yourself. Challenge yourself. Become the person you know you can become. Don’t let anyone make decisions for how you’re going to be or where you’ll end up. It’s not their story you’re writing. It’s yours. Let change be your own. Let who you are be a cause for the kind of change you want in your life. You have the ability to make your own choices and the capability to lead your own life.

Be your own change. Be your own savior. And most of all, Be your own Hero.

  • -Braverhope

BOOK: The sun and her flowers by Rupi Kaur


GOODREADS: Divided into five chapters and illustrated by Kaur, the sun and her flowers is a journey of wilting, falling, rooting, rising, and blooming. A celebration of love in all its forms.

MY GOD. How can I describe this book? I simply can’t. The only thing I need to recount and share is that I have been bookmarking and highlighting NON-STOP. If I was reading a hard copy, it would be wet with neon markers.

I love 97% of the book. ❤ ❤ ❤

  • You left and I wanted you still yet I deserved someone who was willing to stay
  • It isn’t what we left behind that breaks me. It’s what we could’ve built had we stayed.
  • I could be anything in the world but I wanted to be his.
  • You’re everywhere except right here, and it hurts.
  • If I’m not the love of your life, I’ll be the greatest loss instead.
  • Why is it that when the story ends, we begin to feel all of it.
  • You do not just wake up and become a butterfly.
  • My mother sacrificed her dream so I can dream
  • Never feel guilty for starting again.
  • When death takes my hand, I will hold you with the other and promise to find you in every lifetime.
  • I will no longer compare my path to the other.
  • The day you have everything, I hope you remember when you had nothing.
  • How do I love myself enough to know your accomplishments are not my failures.

GAHH. It’s about loss, self love, accepting your flaws, loving yourself, holding yourself accountable for your actions, living life, finding value and everything in between. ❤

PONDER


The young may not like this but here is a truth to consider:
Sometimes it takes 10 years to get that 1 year that will change your life.
 I spoke and trained for 12 years doing talks pro-bono until that crucial year the opportunity came and turned professional.
Many want to short cut the process wanting instant success. Doesn’t work well.
There is always a process before you can get to achieve long term success. And here is the catch. The process continues. 
— Francis Kong
ROAD

BOOK: Barking up the Wrong Tree by Eric Barker: Chapter 6


The Surprising science behind why everything you know about success is mostly wrong

Chapter 6: Work, Work, Work or Work Life Balance? How to find harmony between home and the office, courtesy of spiderman, Buddhist-monks, Albert Einstein, professional wrestlers and Genghis khan.

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  • Ted Williams: ‘Hundreds of kids have the natural ability to become great ballplayers but nothing but practice, practice, practice will bring out that ability.’ It wasn’t mere hours that made Williams so great, It was how he spent those hours. He was a perfectionist, constantly trying to improve.
  • Does all hard work produce success? Yes. People who wish to do so must organize their lives around a single enterprise. They must be monomaniacs, even megalomaniacs about their pursuits. They must start early, labor continuously an never give up the cause.
  • Voluminous productivity is the rule and not the exception and individuals who have made some noteworthy contributions. To be the very best, you must be a little nuts in the effort department. Hours alone are not enough. Those hours need to be hard. You need to be pushing yourself to be better.
  • Hard Work creates talent and talent plus time creates success.
  • Libri aut liberi —- Books or Children. If you’re very serious about creating things, you sacrifice family.
  • The people who survive stress the best are the ones who actually increase their social investments in the middle of the stress, which is the opposite of what most of us do. We’re more likely to have faith in the people we joke around with.
  • Don’t do more work if you can do better work.
  • Ralph Waldo Emerson: We are always getting ready to live, but never living.

Four Metrics that matter most: 

  1. Happiness – having feelings of pleasure or contentment in and about your life. (Enjoying)
  2. Achievement – achieving accomplishments that compare favorably against similar goals others have strive for. (Winning)
  3. Significance – having a positive impact on people you care about. (Counting to others)
  4. Legacy – establishing your values or accomplishments in ways that help others find future success. (Extending)

 

Most of us don’t take the time. We’re reactive, like the tribes of the steppes. And the problem with work life balance is that the old limits are no longer in place for us. We can’t rely on the world to tell us when to power down or shift gears. It’s on you now. That means you need a plan, or you’re always going to feel like you’re not doing enough. Your war is first and last with yourself.

For a WLB life, 

  • Track your time
  • Talk to your boss
  • Schedule everything
  • Control your context.
  • End the day right and on time

BOOK: Barking up the Wrong Tree by Eric Barker: Chapter 4


The Surprising science behind why everything you know about success is mostly wrong.

Chapter 4: It’s not what you know, It’s who you know (unless it really is what you know) What can we learn about the power of networks from hostage negotiators, top comedians and smartest person who ever lived

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  • Paul Erdos loved to collaborate. He lived out of a suitcase and routinely traveled to 25 countries, eventually working with 500 other mathematicians. ‘Erdos Number’ – a measure of how close you are to working with Paul.
  • Research shows that you don’t actually need to know more to be seen as a leader. Merely by speaking first and speaking often – people come to be seen as El Jefe and those who initially act shy in groups are perceived as less intelligent.
  • To get ahead, you need to self-promote. This comes naturally to extroverts and is actually more important than competence when it comes to being seen as a leader.
  • Having a large network opens you up to more opportunities, it exposes you to all kinds of other new possibilities.
  • Introversion predicts academic performance better than cognitive ability.
  • If you can’t stand a moment aloe, get that MBA and chase that leadership position over a passive workforce. But if people drive you crazy, dive deep into your passion, earn those ten thousand hours and be renowned as the best in your field.
  • Adam Grant: Read each situation carefully and ask yourself: What do I need to do right now to be most happy or successful?
  • When we collaborate – the gains can be exponential. But when we don’t communicate, we can end up not only missing those benefits but also getting our efforts jammed.
  • Adam Rifkin: Be a friend. It is better to give than to receive. Look for opportunities to do something for the other person, such as haring knowledge or offering an introduction to someone that person might not know but would be interested in knowing. Do not be transactional. Do not offer something because you want something in return. Instead, show a genuine interest in something you and other person have in common.
  • The Rule of Thumb in friendship: Be socially optimistic. Assume other people will like you and they probably will.
  • The groups you associate with often determine the type of person you become.
  • Thank the people around you. Relationships are the key to happiness and taking time to say ‘thanks’ renews that feeling of being blessed.

 

Fundamentals of Friendship

  1. You like Ironman? I like Ironman too. – Introduce yourself. We all choose to be friends with people who are like us.
  2. Listen and Encourage other toddlers. – Ask them questions and listen. You’re likely to hear something you can connect over. Asking people questions about themselves can create a bod as strong as lifelong friendship in a surprisingly short amount of time. Stop thinking about what you’re going to say next and focus on what they’re saying now. Don’t be afraid to pay the person a sincere compliment. Asking for advise can really help others warm up to you. Ask what challenges people face. Everyone loves to complain a little about the things that stress them out.
  3. Be a giver. Share yout twinkies. – Offer to help people. When people say they’re having a trouble about something, find a way to help.

How to get an Amazing Mentor right for you? 

  1. Be a worthy pupil – When the student is ready, the teacher appears.
  2. Study them, really study them – Spend time and be intimately familiar with someone’s work and you want someone who scares you a bit.
  3. Wasting a mentor’s time is a mortal sin – Asking great questions is a perfect way to build a relationship. Never ask a mentor a question Google can easily answer for you.
  4. Follow up – The key is to stay relevant. You need to consistently hit them with a conversation to keep the relationship alive but without being a nuisance. Do what they said, get results and let them know they made a difference.

 

We all have stuff we can learn from someone else. 

THOUGHTS: ’18 Year End Post


In 2018, I turned 27. 10 years ago, I thought by this age, I already have a very successful restaurant or that I’m already at the top of the corporate ladder and won an YMMA award. There are things I’ve dreamed of owning at this age such as my own house, my own car, a very fat bank account which can last a luxurious life for 5 years.

In 2018, I traveled to one of my bucket list places; New York. It’s surreal to look back on it. It’s only my second time in US and though I would have wanted to explore new countries, I am grateful to tick this one off. 😀 I also got to spend time with relatives. I know my mom has been itching to visit her siblings and I know how happy she was to spend time with them.  We were also introduced to one of our cousins there: Brandon.

In 2018, Our family got bigger. My sister finally gave birth to Elle, my goddaughter and she is beautiful and special. I cannot believe how much my sister grew and matured just by being a mother. It’s exciting to see her blossom like that for her child. I finally met Kyle, the son of one of my closest cousin. My cousin Marc also found out that he will be having a kid. ❤ My cousin Derek also was blessed with a new Rodriguez Baby Girl. Lastly, my cousin Alexis also welcomed a baby girl Zoey.

In 2018, I found out I have lumps. I guess it’s teaching me not to ignore APEs. I found out I have 4 and 3 in my breasts and several lumps in my uterus which needs to be monitored. But thankfully, nothing that we need to worry about in the near future.

In 2018, I graduated and earned the three letters, MBA. My journey in earning the degree has been filled with tears, coffee, tons of pressure and grit. I’m glad that’s over but I’ll be missing everything about it too.

In 2018, I got engaged. I still can’t understand how I feel about it. It’s all sort of mixed emotions. I’m beyond happy and excited to start living our married life. I want to skip the wedding preparations and the wedding and jump off to living and facing everyday with the love of my life. But I feel extremely sad to be leaving my family too.  I didn’t know I would miss everything so bad. I cannot believe I will not be spending everyday with them.

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There’s a lot of things that didn’t go as I planned it to be or how I imagined it to be. But I’d like to think that this is what God has planned for me and I know that he knows what’s best, even if it’s not what I prayed for. I’d like to think that this is where I’m supposed to be.

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In 2019, I plan to save more. Not just for the wedding but I’ll try to avoid a lot of mini expenses such as going for 3in1 cofee or 711 french vanilla than Starbucks or opting to walk (cause it will do me good) or FX than booking a Grab or just simply pausing before buying anything new.

In 2019, I plan to stick to basics. In relation to saving more, I plan to only buy clothes that are basics. I’m planning to stick with White, Black, Gray, Brown and all its shades of family.

In 2019, I plan to stick to my weight goal, 97. The ideal goal for my height is 107 – 140 but since I don’t have an active lifestyle, I’d like to keep it to 97. Also, I plan to make it a habit to do a 5 minute of anything workout before taking a bath every morning.

In 2019, I plan to read more books. I’m glad I surpassed my 2018 goal of 20 books. ❤ My goal for this coming year year is to stick to 20 since I’ll be super busy. BUT, I’ll spice it up by following a reading challenge this time.

In 2019, I plan to be more grateful, appreciative and understanding. Things may not work out but I hope to see the good small things that I am blessed with.

 

I’d like to say all of my plans but it might bite me back in the ass if I promise to do something I know I’m not committed to, so I’ll stick with what I’ve written here. I have faith that this coming year will bring more blessings and positive changes and transformation in my life and the people that I love.

Regardless of what happened this year, it’s been pretty amazing and I’m looking forward to 2019 with an open heart and mind. And here’s to praying for a better version of Janna. ❤

P.S. I look awful when blowing something. I just realized. 😀

BOOK: THE RETURN OF THE YOUNG PRINCE


From what I remember, the first and last time I read The Little Prince was when I was still in Highschool which was about 13 years ago. But the book is such a classic so I had no choice but to read the book that wants us to remember the young little prince that reminded us that we were all a child once and that we should always carry that child with us.

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Who will ever forget the seemingly naive and child-like purity in him? I think Roemmers tries hard to portray the simple life altering questions of the young prince before. He strives to simplify the story thru conversations with the young prince and teach him about life thru metaphors and instilling some pictures in the book. However, it still comes out as a heavy conversation for a child to understand.

Highlights of the Book: 

  • All those warnings to protect us as adults, in fact distance us so much from others that touching someone or even looking them in the eye has us uncomfortable and anxious.
  • If you’re convinced you can do it, then you most certainly can. But if you believe you can’t, that practically guarantees you won’t manage it.
  • Humans have developed a great capacity for justifying themselves. They blame their flaws on a lack of love or education or on all the suffering they’ve had to deal with.
  • The longer we delay in confronting the obstacle in our path, the bigger the difficulties grow and the smaller we become.
  • We should always be ready to abandon the comfort of our position and face our problems again and again until we’re satisfied we’e resolved them and make progress.
  • The best way to solve a problem is to think of it only as a difficulty. Then you’ll be able to approach it with a positive attitude that sharpens the mind and beats a path towards more solutions in the future.
  • Be thankful for difficulties as that will allow you to grow and to keep moving up the path to perfection.
  • Sometimes you’ll discover that when you change your point of view, the obstacle disappears because often the difficulty is in us – and it’s nothing but our rigid, short sighted way of seeing things.
  • You create the reality around you.
  • Before we improve anything on this world, there is a lot we need to improve in ourselves. There’s only one way of changing the world and that’s by changing yourself.
  • Whatever cards you’re dealt with, you should be grateful for a life that gives you the opportunity to evolve. Fate always finds a way to make us learn the things we resist the most, the things we least want to accept.
  • All of us have to go on an arduous journey into the depths of our being. And no conquest can offer us a greater reward.
  • There’s always something we can do, even if we don’t believe it ourselves.
  • How do I grow up without becoming serious? When we’re young, we go out into the world and find it’s very different from the one we got to know through our parents. — Injustice, violence, shallowness and lack of love torment us. And instead of spreading light and joy around us, our spirit starts to tremble in the face of reality’s painful but unstoppable advance. As more importance is given to having and not having, the search is aimed at something that lies outside of us which allows us to avoid having to look inside ourselves.
  • The most important thing is to be as attentive and aware as possible, with our senses awakened and our ability to love utterly intact, so that we can exist right here and now, and enjoy life and be creative, trapped in neither the past nor the future.
  • Differences are the first things that attract us and when we admire that, we make it unique. It’s the same tings that interest us and complement us are also used to separate and divide us. The important thing is that you don’t stop being yourself in order to fit with what other people want. We’re all born princes, it’s just some don’t know it and others forget. My kingdom only exists in me.
  • If you manage to communicate something truly important even if it is only to the small group around you, you can be sure that the light will forge its way through a whole horizon of shadows just as the glow of a distant star travels thousand of years of darkness to reach us.
  • Don’t betray your desires and don’t bury them inside yourself until they die of starvation. Learn to bring what’s real together with what you yearn for. In all that you do, give the best of yourself so that your spirit is returned to you, and offer the best of yourself to each person so that they an return your love. You’ll see that the world will become a magnifying mirror, reflecting back at you everything that you gave without self interest. Because the only way to surround yourself with smiles is to smile and the only way to surround yourself with love is to give it to others. 
  • Love yourself, and you’ll be able to love others. Love your dreams so that you can use them to build a world that is warm and beautiful, full of smiles and hugs. If you really believe it, and build it up bit by bit, that world will become real for you. And it will be the reward for all your worthy endeavors. It’s only people who truly love are like stars, and their light keeps shining on us after they’re gone.
  • Any change means leaving a part of ourselves behind. It’s the only way to grow and make progress. It’s painful but we know that the experience will enrich us. As we go little by little, we let go of everything dispensable and hold on only to what is essential. The truth is that without difficulties along the way, it would be impossible to make progress as human beings and discover our true nature. It is at really critical moments that the best of us comes to light.
  • To live better is to draw fully on everything that life offers, and be open to anything that might enrich us emotionally, materially or spiritually. Happiness comes from being and not having. If we were perfect, if we had everything, how will we relate to each other? The simplest and most direct path to happiness is making the people around us happy.
  • Ultimately, if you dedicate your life to finding the best in people, you’ll end uup finding the best in yourself.

 

  1. What is a problem? A problem is like a door you haven’t got a key to.
  • The first thing to do is to see if the problem really is yours, if it’s your path that it’s blocking. If the problem is really yours, then you have to find the right key and put it into the lock in the right sort of way. Some people don’t even find the key – and not for the lack of imagination but because they are unwilling to try two or three times with the keys that they have, and sometimes they don’t try at all. They want someone to hand them the key or even worse, to come and open the door for them.  What happens to people who don’t manage to open the door? There’s no point in losing our tempers, banging on the door and doing ourselves damage.  How  do I find the right key? If you keep on asking your question over and over again, you’ll always end up finding the answer. If you persevere and try all the keys you’ve got, eventually, you’ll open the door.

2. How can you love yourself while knowing your own flaws? 

  • To love and forgive yourself, it’s enough to want to become a better person and to accept that you have always done the best that you could. True love is free and knows no limits It doesn’t seek to satisfy its own needs but concentrates on what’s good for the loved one. If you search truthfully, you will end up finding a reason to love yourself and you will discover that you are a unique and wonderful being.

 

Ultimately, if you want a book that will teach you a two or three about living the right kind of life, pick this book up. But if you’re looking for something that resembles how the little prince is written, you’ll be disappointed.

BOOK: TUESDAYS WITH MORRIE BY MITCH ALBOM


Do I wither up and disappear or do I make the best of my time left?

Are you giving to your community? Are you at peace with yourself?

Are you trying to be as human as you can be?

This, I believe is a straight up classroom type life lessons as portrayed by Mitch himself and his tuesday conversations with his previous professor who is currently battling cancer. Here, Morrie asks Mitch to accompany him to his last days as he teaches each and everyone of us how to live by learning how to die.

*** second book to re-read! ❤

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Accept what you are able to do and what you are not able to do. Accept the past as past without denying it or discarding it. Learn to forgive yourself and others. Don’t assume that it’s too late to get involved.

Dying is only one thing to be sad over. Living unhappily is something else.

The culture that we have does not make people feel good about themselves. We’re teaching the wrong things. And you have to be strong enough to say it the culture doesn’t work for you, don’t buy it. Create your own.

The tension of opposites? Life is a series of pulls back and forth. You want to do one thing but you are bound to do something else. Something hurts you, yet you know it shouldn’t. Most of us live somewhere in the middle. So which side wins? Love wins. Love always wins.

So many people walk around with a meaningless life. They seem half – asleep, even when they’re busy doing things they think are important. This is because they are chasing the wrong things. The way you get meaning to your life is to devote yourself to loving others, to your community and to creating something that gives you purpose and meaning.

I. WORLD

Death is the great equalizer, the one big thing that can finally make strangers shed a tear for one another. The most important thing in life is to learn how to give out love and to let it come in. Love is the only rational act.

II. FEELING SORRY FOR YOURSELF

I give myself a good cry when I need it. But then I concentrate on all the good things still in my life. A thing is only horrible if you see it that way.

III. REGRETS

Is this all? Is this all I want? Is something missing? We all need teachers in our lives.

IV. DEATH

Everyone knows they’re going to die. but nobody believes it. If we did, we would do things differently. To know you’re going to die and to be prepared for it at any time. That way, you can actually be more involved in your life while you’re living. Once you learn how to die, you learn how to live.

V. FAMILY

There is no foundation, no secure ground upon which people may stand today if it isn’t the family. Family is not about justt love but letting others know there’s someone who is watching out for them.

VI. EMOTIONS

Don’t  cling to things because everything is impermanent. Detachment doesn’t mean you don’t let the experience penetrate you. On the contrary, you let it penetrate you fully. That’s how you are able to leave it. Wash yourself with emotion. It won’t hurt you. It will only help.

VII. FEAR OF AGING

It’s like going back to being a child again. We all know how to be a child. It’s inside all of us. It’s just remembering how to enjoy it. Aging is not just decay. It’s growth. It’s more than the negative you’re going to die, it’s also the positive that you understand you’re going to die and that you live a better life because of it. You have to find what’s good and true and beautiful as it is now. Looking back makes you competitive. How can I be envious of where you are — when I’ve been there myself?

VIII. MONEY

Money is not a substitute for tenderness, and power is not substitute for tenderness. Know what really gives you satisfaction? Offering others what you have to give. Devote yourself to loving others, and devote yourself to your community and devote yourself to creating something that gives you purpose and meaning. Only an open heart will allow you to float equally between everyone. Do the kind of things that come from the heart. When you do, you won’t be dissatisfied, you won’t be envious, you won’t be longing for somebody else’s things.

IX. LOVE GOES ON

Love is how you stay alive, even after you’re gone. As long as we can love each other, and remember the feeling of love we had, we can die without ever really going away. All the love you created is still there. You live on — in the hearts of everyone you have touched and nurtured. Death ends a life, not a relationship.

X. MARRIAGE

In marriage, you get tested. You find out who you are, who the other person is, and how you can accommodate or don’t. If you don’t respect the  other person, you’re gonna have a lot of trouble. If you don’t know how to compromise, if you can’t talk openly about what goes on between you and if you don’t have a common set of values in life, you’re gonna have trouble — and the biggest one? your belief in the importance of your marriage.

XI. CULTURE

The big things — how we think, what we value– those you must choose yourself. You can’t let anyone or society determine those for you. Every society has its own problems. The way you do it, is not to run away. You have to work at creating your own culture. No matter where you live, the biggest defect we human beings have is our shortsightedness. We don’t see what we could be. We should be looking at our potential, stretching ourselves into everything we can become. We all need others.

Be compassionate. Take responsibility for each other. If we only learned those lessons, this world would be so much a better place.

XII. FORGIVENESS

Forgive yourself before you die and forgive others. Make peace.

 

BOOK: All your perfects by Colleen Hoover


Goodreads: Quinn and Graham’s perfect love is threatened by their imperfect marriage. The memories, mistakes, and secrets that they have built up over the years are now tearing them apart. The one thing that could save them might also be the very thing that pushes their marriage beyond the point of repair.

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This is what scares me in a marriage. How can two perfectly in love couple just fall out of love? Can a relationship stay the same if both work on it hard enough? Infidelity is one but how can a person who used to give you so much contentment and happiness be the person you don’t want to see next to you in the morning? Two, children is not the sole goal to a marriage. Why can’t it be two people who wants to commit to each other for the rest of their lives call it a happy marriage whether or not they have kids? Children are an amazing gift of god, but I think it is only a by-product of the love the couple has for each other. It’s not only kids that keeps a marriage alive.

Anyway, despite the whirlwind of emotions this book cost me, I was able to finish it in one night and one day. That’s just how much I want to keep reading and rooting for their marriage to work out. I won’t spoil but Graham less the infidelity is just amazing, how much he loves his wife. And his tear jerking letters. I promise to love you more when…

With my marriage? I also hope to weather Category 5 moments or even the stronger ones. Fingers crossed. ❤ Colleen, you did it again! You really are one of my favorite authors! ❤

The SAD Parts: 

  • He used to look at me with amusement and awe. Now his eyes just flood me with pity.
  • It’s strange how I can miss a person who is still here. It’s strange that I can miss making love to a person I still have sex with
  • Should he be punished by my infertility? He says kids don’t matter to him as much as I matter to him, but I know he says that because he doesn’t want to hurt me. But ten or twenty years from now, he’ll resent me.
  • Just because we used to be perfect for each other doesn’t mean we’re perfect together now.

The GRAHAM Parts: 

  • Graham: Nothing about you is unimpressive.
  • Graham: You are so fucking beautiful.
  • Graham: Be my wife, Quinn. Weather the category 5 moments with me.
  • Graham: I didn’t marry you just for the good years. I didn’t marry you just for the amazing chemistry we have. And I’d be foolish to think our marriage could last an eternity without a few tough moments. I know one thing with complete certainty, I love you more this year than any year that came before it. And as much as I promise to be your pillar of strength for as long as you need one. I’m sure I will sometimes fail you. My whole purpose in life is to make you happy and sometimes I feel like I’m unable to do that anymore. Sometimes I give up on myself. But I just pray that you don’t give up on me.
  • Graham: I promise to love you more when you’re hurting than when you’re happy.  I promise to love you more when we’re poor than when we’re swimming in riches. I promise to love you more when you’re crying than when you’re laughing. I promise to love you more when you’re sick than when you’re healthy. I promise to love you more when you hate me than when you love me.

Some lines from the book: 

  • Sometimes when people change, it’s not always noticeable in a marriage, because the couple changes together, in the same direction. But sometimes people change in opposite direction.
  • The problem is, love and happiness are not concordant. One can exist without the other.
  • It’s hard to hold one to someone who has long since slipped away.
  • When you associate yourself with another person for so long, it’s difficult becoming your own person again.
  • Ten years from now on August eight, I’m going to roll over in our bed at midnight and whisper, ‘I told you so’ in your ear.
  • Smiling like he just conquered he world.
  • My husband’s heart is my saving grace.
  • He’s just the right amount of confident and cocky. But he balances that out with his reverent side. He’s funny and smart and he comes on way too strong, but it all feels so genuine.
  • Sadness is like a spiderweb. You don’t see it until you’re caught up in it, and then you have to claw at yourself to try to break free.
  • We’re all full of flaws. Hundreds of them. They’re like tiny holes all over our skin. Sometimes we shine too much light on our own flaws. But there are some people who try to ignore their own flaws by shining light on other people’s to the point that the other person’s flaws become their only focus. They pick at them, little by little, until they rip wide open and that’s all we become to them. One giant, gaping flaw.
  • When you meet someone who is good for you, they won’t fill you with insecurities by focusing on your flaws. They’ll fill you with inspiration, because they’ll focus on all the best parts of you.
  • Sometimes people meet and none of the surface-level-stuff matters because they see past all that.
  • It’s weird. I used to be fine when I was alone. But now that I have you, I’m lonely when I’m alone.
  • It wouldn’t matter if that consisted of a conversation, a kiss or a three day fuck-a-thon. Betrayal hurts the same on any level when it’s your husband doing the betraying.
  • A good husband stands at his wife’s side through sickness and health. A good husband – a husband who truly loves his wife – wouldn’t cheat on her and then blame his infidelity on the act that he’s lonely.
  • It’s funny how you can be so happy with someone and love them so much it creates an underlying sense of fear in you that you never knew before them. The fear of losing them. The fear of them getting hurt.
  • Be whatever you want to be. Be a soldier, if you want. Or a lawyer or a CEO or a housewife. The only thing you shouldn’t be is embarrassed.
  • No matter how much you love someone – the capacity of that love is meaningless if it outweighs your capacity to forgive.
  • What’s the secret to such a perfect marriage? Our marriage hasn’t been perfect. No marriage is perfect. There were times when she gave up on us. There were even more times when I gave up on us. The secret to our longevity is that we never gave up at the same time.
  • The sight of him alone instantly calms me.
  • The longer it takes, we might even appreciate it a little more. Gratitude is born in the struggle.
  • But I promise you I am loving you harder this year than any year that came before it.

THOUGHTS: BILLIONS TV SHOW


This may as well be my second favorite show next to Suits in their own room for brains and ego genre. I am not being overly dramatic but if you haven’t watched the show, you better fucking start now.. Why am I hooked?

  • There’s a twist in every episode. (May it be Chuck’s betrayal to his bestfriend or Axe’s lie to his wife, firing of Bryan or the betrayal of Taylor – like one thing happens one after the other..
  • Like One big ball of ego is running the show
  • A ton of testosterone floating in every scene.
  • Ben Kim’s elevator dance
  • Seeing that there’s a strong female lead character who only uses words to rebuild a man
  • Learning a thing or two such as Catherine the Great and horse penises or the matador perspective.
  • Because ultimately, who doesn’t want to learn about wealth and power?
  • Or Lara’s principle to teach her children a life not ruled by money
  • And heck, it’s in New York City!
  • How can you even choose between Axe and Chuck? No? Because you can’t! But I’m secretly rooting for Axe anyway.

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Some good ‘ol lines from the big ball of penises:

  • What’s the point of having FUCK YOU MONEY if you never say FUCK YOU?
  • When I pull a deal off the table, I leave Nagasaki behind
  • The enemy worse than a dangerous man with unlimited resources is one without nothing to lose
  • Whenever you can, put a company in your mouth
  • The best way to bond with someone isn’t doing a favor, it’s asking for one.
  • You don’t have to outswim the shark. You just have to outswim the guy you’re scuba diving with
  • What we do has consequences, intended and unintended. The decisions we make, the actions we bring, have weight.
  • I like nightmares. When I wake up. They leave me deeply valuing my reality
  • Become anti fragile or die.
  • The fact that you can’t fully understand that doesn’t mean he’s wrong. It just means you haven’t gone beyond your own limits.
  • We all mask certain emotions. Bjorn Borg did. Eventually it will end up costing you everything
  • You were wrong. Im not human. Im a machine. Im a fucking terminator.
  • Only people with money forget about money
  • They may be cheering now. But believe me they are dying to boo.
  • Nobody leaves a negotiation happy.
  • Only a fool doesn’t look at the downside but only a coward allows it to dissuade him from that which he knows he must do.
  • But either way, GET OFF MY DICK..
  • The great never sacrifice the important for the urgent.
  • Hate is nature’s most perfect energy source. It’s endlessly renewable.

I may have to admit it – I think the character of axe is insanely hot. Brains and being a douche? Oh yes Sir! ❤

BOOK: DAVID & GOLIATH by Malcolm Gladwell


Giants are not what we think they are. The same qualities that appear to give them strength are often the sources of great weakness. And the fact of being an underdog can change people in ways that we often fail to appreciate; it can open doors and create opportunities and educate and enlighten and make possible what might otherwise have seemed unthinkable.

Power can come in other forms – in breaking rules, in substituting speed and surprise for strength. The powerful and the strong are not always what they seem.

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CHAPTER ONE: VIVEK RANADIVE

  • There is a set of advantages that have to do with material resources, and there is a set that have to do with the absence of material resource – and the reason underdogs win as often as they do is that the latter is sometimes every bit the equal of the former.
  • The difference is the willingness to try harder than anyone else.

CHAPTER TWO: TERESA DE BRITO

His father started out by earning money for a living. He’s trying to teach his children how to be more frugal and to be more grateful and how to earn the money that you spend. But as a parent, he wants the best for his children and for them not to experience what he experienced. But where do you draw the line? It’s hard to teach your children how to earn their own money if you have the financial capacity already.(He who doesn’t have it, does it and he who has it, misuses it.)

  • ‘Any fool can spend money. But to earn it and save it and defer gratification – then you learn to value it differently.
  • Scarcity was a great motivator.
  • What is possible isn’t always right.
  • It is good to be bigger and stronger than your opponent. It is not so good to be so big and strong that you are sitting duck for a rock fired.

CHAPTER THREE: CAROLINE SACKS

‘If I’d gone to the University of Maryland, I’d still be in science’. Did you know that there is a higher percentage rate of people succeeding in life who came from little ponds? People from the highest institutions tend to think lowly of themselves compared to other people when you have the big pond as an environment.

  • Did they want to be a little fish in a big pond of a Big Fish in a little pond?
  • There is a point at which money and resources stop making our lives better and start making them worse.
  • We strive for the best and attached great importance to getting into the finest institutions we can. But rarely do we stop and consider whether the most prestigious of institutions is always in our best interest.
  • The challenge was to advance without worrying about opinion.
  • There are times and places where it is better to be a big fish in a little pond than a little fish in a big pond, where the apparent disadvantage of being an outsider in a marginal world turns out not to be a disadvantage at all.
  • How you feel about your abilities – your academic self-concept – in the context of your classroom shapes your willingness to tackle challenges and finish difficult tasks. It’s a crucial element in your motivation and confidence.
  • Sometimes, it’s not just how smart you are. It’s how smart you feel relative to the other people in the room.
  • We take it for granted that the big pond expands opportunities, just as we take it for granted that a smaller class is always a better class. We have a definition in our heads of what an advantage is – and the definition isn’t right. It means that we misread battles between underdogs and giants. It means that we underestimate how much freedom there can be in what looks like a disadvantage. It’s the little pond that maximizes your chances to do whatever you want.

THE THEORY OF DESIRABLE DIFFICULTY

2 Corinthians 12: 7-10 ‘I was given a thorn in my flesh, a messenger of Satan, to torment me. Three times I pleaded with the Lord to take it away from me. But he said to me, “My grace is sufficient for you, for my power is made perfect in weakness.” Therefore I will boast all the more gladly about my weaknesses, so that Christ’s power may rest on me. 10 That is why, for Christ’s sake, I delight in weaknesses, in insults, in hardships, in persecutions, in difficulties. For when I am weak, then I am strong’

CHAPTER FOUR: DAVID BOIES

Dyslexia: There’s a possibility that they succeeded, in part, because of their disorder – that they learned something I their struggle that proved to be an enormous advantage.

  • Capitalization Learning is we get good at something by building on the strengths that we are naturally given. But desirable difficulties have the opposite logic. They excel by making their lives harder, by forcing them to compensate for something that had been taken away from them.
  • It requires that you overcome your insecurity and humiliation.
  • What is learned out of necessity is inevitably more powerful than the learning that comes easily.

CHAPTER FIVE: EMILY JAY FREIREICH

When a bomb falls, it divides the population into three groups: the dead, the near misses and the remote misses. When you are the remote miss, there’s a feeling of excitement with a flavour of invulnerability. A near miss leaves you traumatized while a remote miss makes you think you are invincible.

  • We are prone to be afraid of being afraid and the conquering of fear produces exhilaration. The contrast between the previous apprehension and the present relief and feeling of security promotes self-confidence that is the very father and mother of courage.
  • The idea of desirable difficulty suggest that not all difficulties are negative.
  • Traumatic experiences can have two completely different effects on people: the same event can be profoundly damaging to one group while leaving another better off.
  • In certain circumstances, a virtue can be made of necessity.
  • Courage is not something that you already have that makes you brave when the tough times start. Courage is what you earn when you’ve been through the tough times and you discover they aren’t so tough after all.
  • It is possible to emerge from even the darkest hell healed and restored.

CHAPTER SIX: WYATT WALKER

De Rabbit is de slickest o’ all de animals de lawd ever made. Martin Luther King’s war from equality among the people of color.

  • The figure of the trickster hero appears in the form of a seemingly innocuous animal that triumphs over others much larger than himself through cunning and guile.
  • The weak could compete in even the most lopsided of contests if they were willing to use their wits.
  • Dyslexics compensate for their disability by developing other skills that at times can rove highly advantageous.
  • There is an unexpected freedom that comes from having nothing to lose.
  • Our definition of what right is, as often as not, simply the way that people in positions of privilege close the door on those on the outside.
  • You got to use what you got.

CHAPTER SEVEN: ROSEMARY LAWLER

  • The Principle of Legitimacy is based on three things. First, people who are asked to obey authority have to feel like they have a voice. Second, the law has to be predictable. There has to be a reasonable expectation that rules tomorrow are going to be roughly the same rules as the rules today. Third, authority has to be fair. It can’t treat one group differently from another.

CHAPTER EIGHT: WILMA DERKSEN

We have all done something dreadful in our lives, or have felt the urge to.

A daughter was killed in a robbery in front of a restaurant. The dad reacted by imposing Three Strikes law when it comes to crime and imprisonment.

  • All we’re looking for are results and the results are my greatest reward.
  • The logic of the inverted U curve is that the same strategies that work really well at first stop working past a certain point.
  • If you lock up too many people for too long, the collateral damage outweighs the benefit.
  • There comes a point where the best intentioned application of power and authority begins to backfire.

CHAPTER NINE: ANDRE TROCME

  • The excessive use of force creates legitimacy problems, and force without legitimacy leads to defiance, not submission.

 

To finally summarize this book:

If you take away the gift of reading, you create the gift of listening. If you bomb a city, you leave behind death and destruction. But you create a community of remote misses. If you take away a mother or a father you cause suffering and despair. But one time in ten, out of that despair rises and indomitable force. You see the giant and the shepherd in the valley of Elah and your eye is drawn to the man with a sword and shield and the glittering armor. But so much of what is beautiful and valuable in the world comes from the shepherd, who has more strength and purpose than we ever imagine.

 What I love about this book is that it made me question what I already thought I knew, especially the bombing philosopy and the inverted u curve. Read it too, you’ll love it!

VENICE


I am currently reading David & Goliath by Malcolm Gladwell.

”Giants are not what we think they are. The same qualities that appear to give them strength are often the sources of great weakness. ”

Much of what we consider valuable in our world arises out of (these) one-sided conflicts. Because the act of facing overwhelming odds, produces greatness and beauty.

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BOOK: GOODBYE DAYS by JEFF ZENTNER


What if you could spend one last day with someone you lost?

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GOODREADS: ‘One day Carver Briggs had it all—three best friends, a supportive family, and a reputation as a talented writer at his high school, Nashville Academy for the Arts.

The next day he lost it all when he sent a simple text to his friend Mars, right before Mars, Eli, and Blake were killed in a car crash.

Now Carver can’t stop blaming himself for the accident, and he’s not the only one. Eli’s twin sister is trying to freeze him out of school with her death-ray stare. And Mars’s father, a powerful judge, is pressuring the district attorney to open a criminal investigation into Carver’s actions.

Luckily, Carver has some unexpected allies: Eli’s girlfriend, the only person to stand by him at school; Dr. Mendez, his new therapist; and Blake’s grandmother, who asks Carver to spend a Goodbye Day with her to share their memories and say a proper goodbye to his friend.’

  • Death steals everything except our stories
  • Funny how people move through this world leaving little pieces of their story with the people they meet, for them to carry. Makes you wonder what’d happen if all those people put their puzzle pieces together.
  • Sometimes pain makes us do bizarre things.
  • – I like the relationship of Blake and the grandma. How he spent saturday morning with her fishing although they are bad at fishing, just so they can bond together.
  • What do you think it takes to keep you out of heaven?
  • I think the only person who knows someone completely is that person. And even then, not always.
  • We go about our lives doing everything we can to keep from looking silly.
  • No one knows how anybody lives through anything. People just do.
  • I wish I’d held on to every moment with him the way a drowning person holds a life preserver.
  • What if there’s a god who’s so much bigger and more powerful than anything that he build universes like ships in bottles, and no matter how far you look or reach, you can’t see or tough outside the bottle?
  • For the most part, you don’t hold the people you love in your heart because they rescued you from drowning or pulled you from a burning house. Mostly you hold them in your heart because they save you, in a million quiet and perfect ways from being alone.
  • Nobility has a funny way of disappearing when accountability raises its ugly head.
  • Have you ever done something similar to this with your own parents? where you tell them who you are?