10 Things I Learned About Love (From Romantic Comedies)

Now, I don’t want to say that I am an expert on love (not one bit) nor that I am an avid movie watcher (not that either) but I have seen a few in my life and they taught me a few things about love that I am going to recount to all of you here.

(Note: this is mainly satire.)

Afbeeldingsresultaat voor red rose

  1. You need to be attractive

Everyone in movies is attractive. If you want to be in the ballgame for love, you need to be a girl with big blue eyes and wavy blonde hair. As a man, tall dark and handsome is the way; with abs to boot.

  1. Girls need to be snobby

When a guy comes up with you and makes a joke, you need to be very snobby. It will cause them to do effort and make more jokes. You will need to say rude things to him and eventually agree to go on a date with him. Hollywood has shown that success is guaranteed.

  1. The men need to show up out of nowhere

Until that point of meeting her, you may have had a life, but no one cares about it until later. Just show up some day and do something unexpected, after which (as noted above) talk to a snobby girl and make funny remarks.

  1. Girls should study journalism

Girls, the key to landing a soulmate is to study journalism. Get a job at a newspaper in New York. Constantly ask your boss for bigger things. He’ll ask you to get ‘that one story’. You’ll meet your guy along the way and also land that promotion.

  1. Guys need to have an unexpected sensitive side

Contrary to what you might think, girls will dig it if you write poetry, sing her love songs in the middle of a rose garden, paint flowers or like to admire romantic artworks in a museum. You don’t need normal hobbies. Just do one of the above mentioned and you’re set for life.

  1. Overly exaggerated gestures are what everyone wants

No one has ever been made uncomfortable by big speeches about love and the sun and the moon. No one has ever rolled their eyes when an entire band showed up so the man could tell his love in song (because only the men need to make this move). Definitely buy her ten million flowers and send them to her work. She won’t feel overwhelmed at all.

  1. Make a huge mistake

Yes, I am advising you to make a huge mistake along the way; preferably while the other person has a large decision to make. Do they stay in New York or do they go to Los Angeles and get their dream job? What you need to do (guys especially) is do something stupid or make her misunderstand something that is very obvious. You can then get in a fight and you can chase after her. She’ll instantly forgive you and marry you in the next scene of your life.

  1. Marriage is the goal

After all the hard work, you can get married to that special someone. Even if you have only been dating two weeks. Just propose to her and she’ll accept. You can have a big fancy wedding (while everyone wonders how you can afford that) and celebrate your two month old love. That’s the only goal. Once you’re married you’ve achieved the ultimate goal. It’s what every person in life wants.

  1. Divorce won’t happen

If you follow all the other nine steps on the list, you won’t ever get divorced or be unhappy. All your troubles are gone and you will happily ever after. You found your soulmate, spent a few weeks dating and getting to know each other on the most shallow of levels and now you are married. The end

In my most sincere opinion, this is the most accurate image Hollywood has ever given us. Well done! Now excuse me while I go change my major to journalism…

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Retreating

It’s been a while since I wrote anything blog-related. Reports, essays and portfolios have been abundant in the mean time. That is also part of the reason why I haven’t been involved with my own blog much. Yet I noticed a bit of a change in my person as well that relates to it.

Where it came from, I can not say. Why it happened now, I do not know either. When exactly it first happened, I have not a clue about. All that I can say is that it did. I came to the realization that my blog is a hobby and that is all it has to be. Of course, getting comments and views is exciting but I steadily began to realize that I do not need those things. Those moments do not contribute to all-time happiness or success in life.

I think this also falls into the category of my shying away from most social media platforms. For over a year now, I have felt that platforms like Facebook have not contributed to my development at all. All it is nowadays is videos and pictures that people share. Rarely do I still see a nice post about what someone did that day. Everything is pictures of parties or festivals I attended. There are no words.

Instead of aimlessly scrolling through my feed, I have decided to read more. I do not need the social media at all. I look when I have a notification, yes, because often times it is a post that was made in a group that I am a part of for university-related reasons. So those keep me up-to-date on topics concerning my academics. Sometimes I message a teacher through Messenger to ask them a quick question but the extent of my use of the app has become minimal at best.

I know that it has become quite trendy to take days off from social media to diminish people’s dependency on it. The reason I want to retreat from it, however, is that I already lost most of my dependency. I’d rather spend my time reading, learning, writing, doing things I actually enjoy or otherwise being useful. Since I no longer look at my Facebook feed as much, it feels calmer. A notification on my phone is a lot more intriguing now as well. It is often a message from a friend on WhatsApp; something I value a lot more than another viral video.

Now that I am more in my own reality, engaging with other people has become more valuable. Visiting them or talking to them on WhatsApp now has more elements to them. There are topics to still talk about, rather than everyone just being involved with sharing their life (in the form of pictures) on the internet. Stories can that way stay fresh and conversations have reason.

In short, what I am trying to say is that my blog will remain in existence, but I will not be actively pursuing its success anymore. That does not take away that I enjoy it and that I do not value my readers (I do), I just wish to have it be less of an obligation. It has become just that.

So until next post, dear readers!

May destiny be kind to you.

PS: Less social media means less passwords to remember. Thus there are so many positive effects to this.

Tristin’s Guide to World Building

 I am definitely a prime example of someone who will create a new world for every single story. Here is a basic guide as to how I do this. I wrote this in the past since a friend requested assistance. 

Tristin’s Guide to World Building

Note: My preferred program to use is Gimp so I refer to that in this guide. The reason I often refer to using different layers is so you can also keep your map as a project file and open it in Gimp. You can then show or hide any layers you don’t need at the moment so you focus on the things that are important.

THE BASICS

STEP 1: Rough outline

The first outline of the world I suggest to be drawn by hand. This way you can be very ‘random’ while sketching something. I find that drawing on paper makes it easier to just go with it and let my imagination work. However, if you don’t want to deal with the hassle of paper, you can draw in a program like Gimp too.

1a. If you have a rough idea of how your world should look, you can go with that.

1b. If you are going for a ‘new’ world, just use your imagination and don’t worry too much about the finer details of the map.

My method is often to draw lines that move in random patterns. Sometimes I come up with maps that look unnatural. In this case it is fine to simply try again.

I usually start with only the outline of the world but you are free to add country borders if that’s something you want on your first draft. You can always remove them during the next step.

STEP 2: Digital outline

Next up you need to make your work digital, if you did not digitally draw the rough outline of your map. I do this by scanning my picture with my printer and then transferring it onto my computer. If you drew digitally, you are good to go already.

Basic outline.png

2a. Create a canvas that you would like to use to put your world on. I suggest you don’t underestimate this. I tend to go for 1500 x 2000 pixels (height x width). Depending on whether or not you want a grid function or not, you will need to adjust the pixels so everything works out correctly.

Note: Be sure to set the grid as a new layer. Use a transparent layer to put your canvas on.

Grids can help you define distance in the story. It can help you find out how long characters need to travel.

Example

I want to use a canvas that is 1500 x 2000 pixels, but I also want to set a grid onto this. Suppose every square in this grid would be 100 x 100 pixels; which means the grid could have 15 x 20 squares. I tend to set my grid outlining to 1 x 1 pixel; meaning the squares on the grid are divided by 1 pixel of black line. This requires a little math. See below.

1500 x 2000 pixels for the canvas
I want to have 15 x 20 squares
One square is 101 x 101 pixels (100 pixels + 1 pixel for the grid)

To complete our grid, we also need to take into account the most outer edges so we add 1 pixel to the eventual equation.

Our actual canvas size would have to be adjusted to;

Height; 1516 (15 x 101 + 1 for the last edges) pixels
Width; 2021 (20 x 101 + 1 for the last edges) pixels

If you want a grid that includes numbers at the top and sides, add one square into the calculations.

(Yes, world building is for smart people.)

2b. Next you need to trace the physical drawing you made. Use a drawing tool like a brush and set it to a solid circle. I tend to use a thicker outline for the world and a thinner outline for the borders of my countries. It is okay if you trace this world onto a white background. For other features however, I suggest using a transparent layer. Sometimes I put the outline of the country borders on a different layer than my world outline. But that’s up to the creator.

2c. Copy and paste your world outline onto the background of the grid canvas (in case you are using one). You can drag the picture around till you are satisfied with where it sits. Anchor it there. The outline of the world will be the basis for everything else you put overtop it, so make sure it’s at the very back of your file.

STEP 3: Landscape

Next you need to decide what the landscape looks like. You can select all white areas with the select tools so you can properly color them. It is fine if you want to color the world outline. I sometimes do that too. It can work just fine that way.

Landscape

3a. Set well distinguished colors. Blue for water, yellow for sand, red for canyon, lime for grass, green for forest and so on. If needed, you can use an extra canvas to write down what every color means so you can properly keep track of everything.

Example

Colors that I like to use

  • Blue = water
  • Light green = grass
  • Dark green = forest
  • Yellow/beige = sand
  • Red/maroon = canyon rock
  • Grey = mountain rock
  • Light grey = snow area
  • Teal (a light shade of blue) = healing water

STEP 4: Locations

So your characters have places to go, you should name places in your world. You can name regions (a forest, a mountain range), the countries and cities/towns. I suggest using a different (transparent) layer for each of these.

By placing text on a transparent layer, you can erase just that name if you want to rename a place.

Locations

4a. Regions are the easiest to name since they tend to be big chunks. You can use a font, size and color that are easy to read on the canvas colors as well as a font size that fits well on the places. I tend to pick something that is not too big so I can actually fit the names even on smaller regions.

4b. With country names, I’d go for something of a reasonable size; something that stands out but does not occupy the entire country space when placed so you can still look around the word to see the place it belongs to.

4c. For cities and such, I tend to place down dots. I pick a color I have not used before (purple or pink) to make the dots to indicate the size of the cities. The biggest dot in every country is the capital city. Medium sized dots are other cities and small dots are towns/villages. What I do with the size of the names;

  • Capital gets big letters; but smaller than the region names.
  • Cities get reasonable sizes
  • Towns/villages get small sizes

There’s usually no more than a 10-5 pixel difference between the sizes. Don’t be afraid to make things too small. If you have a large canvas, that is just fine. Remember, if you need it during writing, you can always zoom in to see what it says.

4d. If you have special locations on your map, you can draw a significant symbol (a star, a triangle, etc.) to indicate where it is and add a name to it in the same way.

You can add lines between locations to indicate roads.

STEP 5: Decide astronomy

This might not seem important but it can make a significant difference in your world. If you wish to follow the same system as the Earth follows, that is perfectly fine. I tend to change things up often.

5a. The first interesting aspect is to decide the pattern of a year. Indicate how many days the year has, how many each month has (if you have months), the lengths of weeks and also the length of seasons.

5b. Decide the heavenly bodies next. There is a likelihood that the world has a star it orbits. However some planets also have moons or even rings. These are things to consider since they can add to the atmosphere within your world. The weather is also interesting to consider.

Weather

Sometimes I add weather to maps. Use a transparent layer and color it with transparent colors to indicate where it tends to rain, where it is warmer and where snow is prominent.

Example

Here is a suggestion for the colors to use:

  • Red = high temperatures
  • Orange = heat waves
  • Yellow = often sunny
  • Green = neutral, pleasant temperatures
  • Blue = cool temperatures
  • Purple = often rains
  • Grey = often cloudy/misty
  • White = often snow

You can adjust the brightness of the colors or the amount of transparency to indicate how common this weather is. If you really want to go to such lengths, you can even make separate weather patterns for the different seasons.

STEP 6: Create physics

This step is mostly a step about imagining and potentially writing. If your story takes place in a magical world, you need to refer to the rules that are involved in this world.

Examples

Example 1: Magic power is only inherited. It can not be learned.
Example 2: People can only use as much magic as their own energy will permit.
Example 3: Magical abilities can be learned only through sacred processes.

Besides that, you need to decide what physics are at play. In most novels I read, the physics resemble those we experience on Earth. Many sci-fi novels choose to either exaggerated these physics or add to them. Traveling at the speed of light is a prime example.

It is also interesting to decide what is significant in your world. This can be special locations, special creatures or special roles that people earn or are born with. You need to decide what influence this has on your world.

An example could be a special plant that is very rare but grants certain advantages to whomever has the plant.

BRINGING LIFE

STEP 1: Create civilizations

A story can not thrive without characters. It is essential to make yourself understand what cultures exist in your world before you attempt to persuade readers of the awesomeness of your world.

1a. Start by outlining which countries or regions exist and if there are people that live there. Describe if there are many people and what race they are. You can add that they speak their own language or have a particular religion.

1b. What really makes societies unique is their customs. For each community, make a brief description of what are important ceremonies or holidays to them. Write about how relationships are handled within the community. Mention small gestures that are native to the community (greetings, expressions of respect, expressions of love, etc.).

1c. Establishing connections between communities and countries is important. It can often influence the plot heavily. Describe how each is governed and what their view of other countries is.

The level of detail you decide to use is completely up to you however a basic understanding of the local cultures will help you remember them and integrate them.

STEP 2: Create wildlife

It would make sense that beyond city walls, there are other living creatures that inhabit the wild. As miniscule a role as they might play in your story, it is still interesting to establish what animals and plants exist.

2a. Describe what (types of) animals inhabit the world. What creatures live where? Are they friendly to the people? Are the intelligent? What role do they play, if any? Perhaps the only role that you desire is birds that can be written about as singing their songs in the morning. That is fine.

2b. Integrate plants into your story. If you are not eager to make up your own plants, then resume as you wish. It might be interesting to understand what lives where. This requires some research. If that is not your cup of tea, then attempt to create your own.

Example

Below is an example of three significant plants growing in one kingdom.

The kingdom is known for several medicinal herbs that are native to it. One is a small red flower (Aniya flower) used to lessen headaches. It is a small plant that grows on the trunks of trees and is thusly found in the forests to the east.

The other is a plant with feather shaped leaves (Dragon Pigmy) that are quite long and thin. The leaves hang outwards and get smaller as they reach the top of the plant. Because the leaves are so long and heavy, the stem of the plant is quite sturdy. It grows in moist areas. It is commonly found in swamp-like locations near the southern shore of Sandöhr. Both the leaves and the root of the Dragon Pigmy plant are used in combination with other herbs to form medicinal healing powders used for speeding up the healing of wounds. It is also commonly used to cure nausea or internal pain. The root of the plant is often cooked and consumed by people due to its healthy factors. Its leaves are used in salads. They are high in iron. The seeds of this plant are hard but are often used to brew tea because the outer core of the seed will dissolve in boiling water. The Dragon Pigmy earned its name due to the leaves of this plant closely resembling the wings of some species of Pigmy dragons.

Besides the Aniya and the Dragon Pigmy, the kingdom is famous for its tropical fruit. This fruit, called a Learan, grows on a fairly short tree in the far south of the kingdom. The Learan tree has a short trunk. This tree grows in a spire-like fashion; the base of it is very wide while the apex is narrow. This causes the tree to look like an enormous thorn. Such an exterior is emphasized by a lack of branches. The tree trunk is covered with round leaves that grow upwards along the tree trunk and seem to cover the tree in scales. The fruit that this tree grows is hidden among its coat of round leaves. The fruit has a cone-shape with a rounded base. The fruit grows taller and longer as it ripens and grows towards the sun. The fruit, at its earliest stages, is a green color equal to the color of the tree’s leaves. At this stage, the fruit is poisonous and the acid from it could cause tissue damage in the body. As the fruit ripens, its color transitions to blue before turning violet. When the fruit has turned blue, the poisonous fluids within have been transformed into sugars. Fruits from this tree are harvested during summer. They are picked when they are a shade of indigo. Learan fruit tastes rather sweet. Its outer core is a thick layer of flexible skin. Within this layer lays soft matter and a lot of liquid. This fruit is high in vitamins and is often used to create fruit juices or wine. In some instances, the fruit is converted into a paste-like substance to be eaten on bread. This fruit is popular even among young children due to the sweetness of it. Besides the fruit this tree provides, the Learan tree is often harvested for its sturdy wood. Learan wood has the benefit of being flexible and resistant to moisture. However, due to the rarity of these trees (they only grow in the south of Sandöhr) the expenses paid for a stack of wood are high.


STEP 3: Describe locations

Many locations become more interesting if you think about how they look or are organized. This makes describing them later on more fun too. It will also hold a stronger identity.

5a. Sketch or describe the way major cities are structured. Consider if the city has walls and if so what they are made of. If there is a castle or fortress, decide the characters for this as well. Decide if the streets are wide or narrow, if roofs are straw or wood. Decide if the roads are paved or if it is simply covered in sand. Perhaps there are cathedrals, academies, libraries or other noteworthy locations. Choose a location in the city for them and give them their own personal exterior.

It can be difficult to decide different identities for everything but this will make it more distinguished and intriguing to have characters visit them. They will have certain touches that set them apart. If you write about their exterior, it will also become easier to visualize them and thus write about them.

STEP 4: Final touches

Though the world is fairly complete now, it remains to be said that many writers like to add specific touches to their world. This is the point at which you can add all the unique aspects that you deem important. Something that I am prone to doing is noting certain aspects about certain areas. An example is that a road in one of my stories was made of a very interesting material. These are things I will record.

Good luck on your world building. 

May destiny be kind to you.

The Circle of Life

Before I get into anything, I would like to mention something to my latest readers; a simple thank you, that is. Those likes and follows make my day, truly! Receiving a notice on my phone that someone liked what I wrote and/or chose to follow me is an occasion that makes me smile quite sincerely. Little moments of sunshine, those are.

Now then, let us move along!

After having spent a partial week and partial weekend with a good friend, I am back to the ‘uni life’. The previous weekend was fun but hectic. My friend and I visited a spa for an entire day. We enjoyed saunas, steam baths, the pool, the hot tub and delightful food. However, upon returning home, we found the kitchen floor covered in water… After spamming my landlord’s phone and mopping to try to keep the water from increasing, the landlord appeared and shut off the water. Great, right? He promised to call someone on Monday morning after which he delivered buckets full of water and bottles and other containers to my home so we had at least some water to live on.

I did not mean to ramble about the subject so much but it was definitely an interesting thing. I kept laughing at the pure absurdity because that was the only way to feel all right.

At the moment, I am feeling even more wonderful. I have enjoyed my evening with games and music. I have been playing the Lion King musical CD. When I first started the music, I had a few chills of nostalgia. I became acquainted with the music from the movie when I was but a miniature version of myself. I have loved it ever since then. Later, when I was seven, my mother, aunt and niece attended the musical. To my dismay, I was not allowed to join them. However, my mother brought something back to the home after the musical; the CD of the music.

There were only a few things I did often at that age. Listening to the Lion King CD was one of them. I am quite sure I drove my whole family crazy since I played it in my radio without end. I would dance to the music, sing along and often times play it while doing something crafty (like making paper slippers). I made them look like animals as well; small dots on yellow shoes for a cheetah, or round ears and a tail for a mouse. When my older brother found out about them, he asked me to make slippers for him too. I had about twenty pairs by that time and I made him several as well.

Before every trip we were going to embark on as a family, I grabbed the CD and ensured it came with us on the trip so I could listen to it in the car as well. My brothers and I would draw or play while the music played on endless repeat.

Now, sixteen years later, I am still listening to the same music, though not the same CD. That CD was so worn that it kept skipping. We had played it till its very demise. Distraught, I inspected the wonderful world of the internet and found another CD. My ability to click the order button had never been so instinctive and rapid. The next day the disk arrived on my doormat. What a treat!

Whenever I listen to it, I envision the musical but I also feel all the beautiful memories flooding into my mind and the sensations associated with them into my heart. I am not prone to reminiscing, but this is definitely a version of that which gives me extensive joy. To know that something so simple as a set of tracks on a CD can revive so many thoughts. These thoughts are of the happiness I felt as a child and the kindness of my family towards one another. These are things I am grateful for and that nothing can replace. They are the greatest gift anyone can ask for.

I can only envision what attending the actual musical will do. In the month of June, my parents, younger brother and I are going to visit it. We have second row seats to boot! I’m sure my dear readers can now guess which CD I am going to bring along on the drive to the musical.

May destiny be kind to you.

Recipe: Pasta with veggies and pesto

Sometimes I experience days where I am eager to cook. In most of those cases, I make what I am familiar with but on some days I am willing to experiment. The best thing is that it has nearly always ended well. I don’t remember all the recipes that I have come up with but here is one that I made for my friend and myself last night. The recipe consists of three portions. I personally cook with organic products. I highly suggest doing the same to get the optimal flavors.

Ingredients:

  • 1 zucchini
  • 3 tomatoes
  • 3 or 4 cloves of garlic
  • +/- 15 g pine nuts
  • 125 g pesto (green)
  • 440 g pasta of any kind
  • teaspoon oil/butter

Instructions:

Step 1: Put butter or oil into a frying pan and let it dissolve.

Step 2: Cook the pasta as instructed.

Step 3: While the pasta cooks, cut the zucchini into small squares. Bake the zucchini on low heat in the frying pan. Stir now and then to get each piece baked well.

Step 4: Cut the garlic into small pieces. Use a garlic press to create small fragments or cut to a small size. Add the garlic to the zucchini.

Step 5: Cut the tomatoes into small pieces and add them to the frying pan.

Step 6: Add the pesto and pine nuts and stir slowly. Add any spices or herbs if desired but it is not necessary.

Step 7: When done cooking, place the pasta in a colander or use another method to part the pasta from its water. Add the pasta to the remaining ingredients and stir till the ingredients are well mixed.

Don’t forget to turn off the stove! We don’t want houses burning down…

Have a nice meal!

 

Cards!

Time sure flies on by! I’m already halfway through my second semester of my first year of university. On that note; I am still enjoying it. I have learned a lot, met new people and gained understanding about who I am as well.

It has also been about a year since I started working on a game. The first few cards have been created. Here I have assembled a few different ones. Does it look appealing?

Cards

I’m still not sure what to call this game but I might call it something that relates to the word ‘destiny’ since it is something I am prone to using on this blog.

Our Faith; Four Principles

It was about three and a half years ago when this conversation occurred. It took place between myself, a dear friend and a young man. The conversation’s lead I do not remember, but I remember the following;

Young man; “So then, what is it that you two believe?”

Me; “I can’t explain. If you believe it, then you just know.”

Young man; “Ugh, women…”

Friend; “It’s not just women. We know men who believe this too and I’m sure they’d agree.”

It took me a lot of time to finally begin to comprehend, in modern English words, what I/we believe. In my dreams, I often have in depth conversations with people about these beliefs but they are never held in any language that I know. While in these dreams though, everything makes sense and the conversations have a lot of depth and content. Yet when I wake up, I am unable to reproduce any of this.

So after both having done my third set of exams (yay!) as well as some long thinking, I have come up with the basics of what we believe. To keep things simple for now, I will explain the four basic principles. I spoke to my friend about this too and she agrees that they encompass mostly what we feel is important. So here are the four basic principles for a faith that has no name.

Be kind

When considering kindness, this means that you extend a helping hand to others. You treat them in a fashion that you would like to be treated by others. You attempt to be considerate of the feelings and thoughts of others and will not judge them for it. Yet while emanating such kindness into the world, you also need to give it to yourself. You need to give to yourself that which you need; food, sleep, relaxation and anything else that you might need that is not based on material needs. Perhaps you enjoy exercise to help your body. Perhaps you like to read to enhance your knowledge. Perhaps you enjoy creative outlets. These are also forms of being kind to yourself.

Be gentle

The second principle is based on gentleness. This does not entail you can not be assertive in what you need and want. It means that you will be a calm person and be gentle to yourself and your surroundings. You will be gentle to animals and other forms of nature. You will be kind to trees and plants and will be considerate of their contribution. A gentle nature also means that you will be gentle in emotions. Though you may become upset or angry, it is important to understand why so you can attempt to resolve it and be calm and gentle once again. By solving your problems, you are being good to yourself. Also included in this principle is patience. This principle is closely linked with the first.

Be true

This principle asks that you be honest and fair with the world and yourself. You need to accept what the world gives you and treat it as its honesty. Also be honest with yourself and accept what and who you are. If you have flaws, that is okay. Be aware of them and accept them to the best of your ability. The principle of truth also means that you need to attempt to be yourself; the real, true you. It means that you follow what your heart tells you is right. In doing so, you must still be aware of facts that the world presents to you. Ignorance is definitely not bliss. Be curious of the world and attempt to uncover its secrets. Look beyond the veil. Do this with people in your life too. Judge them for their heart only if you know their heart’s contents and intent.

Be open

Being open means being curious as well as open-minded. Do not shut yourself off from the world and other people. See experiences as building blocks for your own self. If things go well, you are being rewarded. If things are tough, you are being given a lesson. Such an awareness will help you face hardships. Expansion of the mind and personal, spiritual growth are the path that our beliefs attempt to place people on. Being open also means that attempting to accept anything that comes your way. Letting go and simply enduring might be hard but it is often the best way to overcome hardships.

By combining all these principles, you can attempt to be an overall good person who strives to do what is right and to grow. This will ultimately lead to the greater goals in our faith; completion, connection and infinite love. I will write more about this next time. I wish to keep this post simple and basic so it doesn’t become overwhelming. If you are still curious however, be patient and it will come to you.

May destiny be kind to you.

Personalities

A few days ago, a friend of mine introduced a link to me that pertained to the ’16 personalities’ by Myers and Briggs. This model is often abbreviated to MBTI. The website I visited offered a free test to see which personality I am.

You can find the test here.

You can also read about all the personalities there.

The test is fun and easy to do. I enjoyed doing it. Finding out my result was even more intriguing. It turns out that I am a Mediator personality. This personality is seen as quiet and reserved but will speak when they feel compelled. They are people who want to led a hand to other persons. They are eager to find harmony. Their career will not feel meaningful unless they are helping a cause of some sort. They value their principles and are usually very poetic and dreamy people.

Read more about Mediators here.

One thing I noticed is that the corresponding website gives a lot of insight into personalities and offers advice on careers, romance and friendships. It also shows a few famous people who have the particular personality type. Mine is shared with Shakespeare and Tolkien. Wow! Yes, I feel honored by that.

I’m not saying that every single part mentioned in the Mediator description is me to a T, but it is very close. A few things I feel a bit different about or adapt in a way that matches me more accurately but if I must establish a general opinion about the validity then I would say it is very accurate.

I had a long conversation with the friend who showed the link to me about our personalities. His is different from my own. I read his description as well and we talked about it. We matched up things we read with actions the other person had taken that we recognized. He mentioned my ability to learn new languages. I mentioned he’d always look for plot holes in movies we’d watch (he is a logician; very analytical and precise people).

One thing that interested me is that the Mediator personality emphasizes sensitivity strongly. At first I felt a tad confused. I am not an emotional person at all and do not generally look towards emotions to guide me. Yet as I continued reading, it identified that Mediators use emotions in a way other than to just monitor their own state. They use it to reflect what other people might be thinking and feeling. They pick up on subtle cues and use those hints to identify feelings. Empathy, I’d call this. It also mentioned that Mediators (and other personalities in the Diplomat group) are also subtle about their own feelings. They do not explicitly express them. People need to read into it more. I find that to be a beautiful though. I rarely let emotions overwhelm me; as people who know me would be able to tell you. I have emotions, yes, but I keep them in check and only show what I feel is appropriate.

The text also reminded me of a conversation I’ve had with another friend about a year ago. I told him, “I just want to see people happy.” He noticed that through the gestures I make, the principles I have and the things I say that such a phrase comes from the depths of my happy. It’s true. I just want people to feel happy and understood in their own respects. Of course I hope they too will be kind and good people but that is not the first and foremost thing I want for others. My friend noticed during our conversation that I do not want to please people to receive something in return. I just take pleasure in seeing them happy. That is the reward that I receive and that is more valuable to me than anything else.

I am not a goddess who wants to be acknowledged for the good I do. I am not a ruler who needs taxes or other payments. I am not a manager who pleases people so they will work hard and help the business. I am none of those things and I don’t (completely) aspire to be. I just want to do things that make the world a better place; step by tiny step.

May destiny be kind to you.

Standstill

This weekend I will be spending within the confines of my home and my schoolbooks. Starting Monday I will have another test week; the third one I experience at this course and this school. This module I had the usual language courses (English and Spanish) as well as bookkeeping, marketing and research. The latter was only a report. The first two both have exams and the middle one also had a report connected to it.

I worked together with a very kind girl from another class this time. We had another teammate but he quit halfway through so we were left with just the two of us. We finished our projects approximately a week before the deadline (today, 7th of April). On that note, we’ve been performing well however our grades remain to be seen.

So far, I have already received two grades this module. The first was for the listening part of my Spanish course. I scored 14/20. This is a good start, I’d say. The second grade is an A+ on English Business Communication. An actual grade by number is still unknown but my teacher said it was at least a 9 and I dearly hope it is a bit higher than that. On the written test coming up, I hope to earn another 9 so that would create a grand average for that subject.

I’m willing to say one thing about this course though. Besides the fact that it is extremely amusing and my knowledge has been greatly expanded, I have never worked this hard in my life… I notice that I need extremely large amounts of sleep. I have had multiple instances of oversleeping. I have had evenings that I laid down and my ‘good eye’ felt painful and irritated, which made it even harder to fall asleep. I plan to speak to a study counselor about the situation because it could harm my performance.

A good friend of mine admitted she thinks I work ‘too’ hard. She recognized the effects that it has might be an accurate representation of putting in too much effort. It’s upsetting to think I can’t do this at the same pace as ‘normal’ people can. I recognize that this is truly a path towards my dream so I am very determined to succeeding. Therefore it is troubling to think I might need to slow down. Even if it is the best step, I will find it hard to accept.

Slowing down would mean holding back on the pace I set towards my dreams. I have already looked at the specialization I want to take in my third year (International Sustainability Management) and that I wish to find an internship in Scandinavia; preferably Sweden or Norway. What exactly that internship will entail, I have not planned yet. I wish to speak to a teacher focused on organizing the internships to see what the school offers.

But sometimes, stopping and standing still can actually be the best way to go on, as contradictory as that may sound. I see that too. I have been someone to often advise friends to take a break so they can go on stronger afterwards. Now I might have to face the consequences of my own advice.

Regardless of what might happen, I hope that I will still be able to complete the course and that the people in my life will continue to support me, even if I cannot perform at a ‘normal’ pace. I plan to make these people proud, some day.

What exactly my aim was of this piece, I am not sure myself. I just wish to share what my life has been concerned with and the what wisdom that gave me. There is also the excuse that I do not write often enough anymore. I am trying to get back into it but that too, is at a standstill. Let us hope we make leaps and bounds on all of my paths soon.

May destiny be kind to you.

#GoGL

While sunlight was abundant, many of the citizens of my nation left their homes last week on the 15th to cast their vote for the Second Chamber. The Second Chamber can be compared to congress, roughly. There are a select amount of seats in the Chamber. Every party gains a certain percentage of the seats, depending on how much votes they earn in the national elections.

I spent the day in front of the news. I observed a commercial-free live broadcast of the current votes and other information. Many of the party leaders took time to speak to their party. These speeches were broadcast as well.

Now that all the votes have finally been tallied, we can see that the biggest party is definitely not the extremist party. Many journalists and other forms of media dub this the ‘Trump effect’. The people of the Netherlands saw that an extreme candidate will make such a mess of things and decided that they do not want that. Which is good!

I voted for GroenLinks (GreenLeft); the party that is mostly concerned about the environment but is also involved in making education available to everyone, including those who can not afford it too easily at this moment. As of yesterday, March 21st 2017, I am a member of GroenLinks. I will be contributing €10 a month from now on to their cause. I will also willingly campaign for them in another four years when we have new elections or sooner if the current coalition fails.

Coalitions need to be formed here. The biggest party has to add other parties to their coalition to gain a majority of the seats in the Chamber. If the parties an all agree to work together, they form a coalition and will be allowed to rule for the next four years. GL has 14 seats now. This isn’t even half of what the biggest party has but it is a record high in their entire history so there is hope!

Regardless of whether they will be asked to join or not, I have decided that I will start writing letters to the Chamber to ask them to consider our environment. I’m sure they are aware of the situation since my country has joined the Paris agreement but my country is doing worse than every other EU country. That’s quite shameful and I think our government should really be urged to step up their game on this. Unlike Trump, our elected government has shown that they are willing to listen to the people they represent. We have fired them before and are not afraid to do it again. They know this, luckily.

While March is drawing a close, spring is knocking on our door. Let’s hope that the increased amount of sunlight while shine through to our government too.

May destiny be kind to you!

#GoGL