living within your means

10 Ways to Simplify Life

1. Don’t try to read other peoples’ minds and don’t expect others to be able to read yours. Communicate if it is important to you.

2. Don’t expect to be friends with everyone. We all are different – and we all like different things. Instead, invest your time in a few good friends. That’s all you really need to feel happy and fulfilled.

3. Create a budget and live within your means. Accruing debt will only cause you to feel stressed.

4. Get rid of the monster of jealousy – and only compare yourself with yourself.

5. Organize your clutter and get rid of some stuff. It will leave you feeling calmer, and will save you lots of time!

6. Stay on the sidelines and don’t get drawn into pointless dramas in other peoples’ lives (unless it’s a crisis – and you know you ought to help).

7. Finish what you’ve started - and then do something else.

8. Treat every person you meet with respect, and err on the side of being patient and kind.

9. Accept there are things that you can’t change or control – and focus on those things that you can change or control.

10. Don’t be too proud to apologise. Admit that you were wrong, then say you’re sorry, and move on.

Financial freedom is simply having minimal to no debt, good money management, savings, low expenses and learning how to happily live within your means.

Wealth is a completely different topic.
Work on gaining financial freedom first, then focus on how to build wealth.

Financial freedom is detaching yourself from materialism and learning how to produce instead of consume.

- Mr Kalejaiye

so when the ny times reports about duterte being practically responsible for over 7k random deaths in one year, in metro manila alone i might add, y’all r silent af

but one guy decides to write about his (again, very EXTREME) lifelong experience with his house help in the atlantic and suddenly y’all are up in arms???? suddenly the philippines is a relevant country and u suddenly KNOW EVERYTHING about what goes on here???

anonymous asked:

How do you budget effectively?

The underlying idea is that you need to make sure you are living within your means. Your spending (plus hopefully some saving) should equal your income. This is written with the assumption that you have enough income to meet your basic needs and are just struggling with how to manage the rest.

Start by tracking your spending for a month or two. Categorize each transaction as a “want” or a “need.” For example, you need to pay your rent, but you wanted to go out for drinks and appetizers after work instead of cooking at home.

My “needs” include: rent, groceries, phone, student loan payment, car payment, gas, prescriptions, and utilities. Figure out what your bare bones budget is - just to stay alive and provide for your basic needs, how much money do you need? Where is that money going? Write it down. Those expenses are your priorities.

Then you can begin thinking about your wants. Trips to the salon, a more expensive TV/internet package or streaming service subscriptions, going out to eat, new clothes or make up, etc. could all be considered wants. You might not absolutely need it to survive, but it’s nice to have. Make budget categories for those reoccurring “want” expenses. You’ll be better off if you can think ahead and decide you’re going to spend money on X, Y and Z this month so you know where your money is going to go. Have a plan for your money.

You need to think about your savings goals as well. Depending on what it is, a savings goal might be categorized as a “need” over your other “wants.” If you know your car is going to crap out on you, make it a budget category and save $XX every month for an eventual replacement before paying to get your nails done or whatever.

I, personally, prefer to save at the end of the month instead of at the beginning. What I mean by that is that I don’t have 10%, 15%, whatever % of my paycheck automatically transferred directly to a separate savings account. I wait until the end of the month, when I know all of my expenses are paid, and then I transfer whatever I can into my savings account. That works for me because I’m naturally a saver - I WANT to save! Nothing makes me happier than transferring money to my savings account. But an automatic transfer is an easy way to save without thinking too much about it, and it could be something for you to consider if you struggle with saving money and will definitely have enough to cover your expenses after saving that 10% from every paycheck or whatever.

Remember that it’s always a good idea to save toward an emergency fund for unexpected expenses. A rule of thumb I’ve heard is three to six months of expenses, the idea being that you would be able to pay all of your bills if you lost your income and needed some time to figure things out. It might seem like a lot a money, just think of it as something to work toward.

Once you decide how much you’re going to spend on what and where your money is going, you need to stick to your budget. It’s useless if you don’t stick to it. Do I spend over my budget? Sometimes. But I’m talking about like going to Costco and buying a bunch of stuff in bulk that will last me through the next month and likely cut down on the next month’s grocery spending anyway, not deciding on a whim to drop $1,200 on a new TV. When you’re tempted to spend outside of your budget, ask yourself if it’s a want or a need, and then try to find a place to fit it into your current budget by cutting something else out or shifting things around. If you want to save more, take a look at your budget and find places to cut.

I’ve used Intuit’s Mint.com since I was in high school (and honestly they should sponsor me for all the shoutouts I give them.) You can connect all of your accounts and see your transactions in once place and their actual budgeting tool is the best I’ve ever used.

How to Simplify your Life

1. Don’t try to read other peoples’ minds and don’t expect others to be able to read yours. Communicate if it is important to you.

2. Don’t expect to be friends with everyone. We all are different – and we all like different things. Instead, invest your time in a few good friends. That’s all you really need to feel happy and fulfilled.

3. Create a budget and live within your means. Accruing lots of debt will only cause you to feel stressed.

4. Kill off the monster of jealousy – and only compare yourself with yourself.

5. Organize your clutter and get rid of excess stuff. It will leave you feeling calmer, and will save you lots of time!

6. Stay on the sidelines and don’t get drawn into pointless scenes and dramas in other peoples’ lives (unless it’s a crisis – and you know you ought to help).

7. Finish what you’ve started - and then do something else.

8. Treat every person you meet with respect, and err on the side of being gentle and kind.

9. Accept that there are things that you can’t change or control – and focus on those things that you can change or control.

10. Admit when you were wrong, then say you’re sorry, and move on.

Professor Layton and the Last Specter (Comparative translation, scene 17)

So I just discovered the Japanese version of the scene of Emmy beating up Jakes’ minions while watching a walkthrough in Youtube and this is CRAZY! Why didn’t they translate this in the game?!! 

Btw, I’m not doing Spanish as always because it says exactly the same that the English one.

JAPANESE / ENGLISH

  • Layton: What? / What’s this?
  • Emmy: Professor, please leave this to me. / Gentleman, I hope we’re not going to have any trouble here.
  • Layton: Emmy, it was like that time with the Black Ravens. What exacly are you…? / Emmy, your methods are unorthodox, but very effective.
  • Emmy: Just a little bit of martial arts and confidence! My uncle does martial arts and he trained me. /Thanks! Whenever you need a little muscle, you just let me know, professor, and I’ll be there.
  • Layton: That’s indeed incredible. / I’ll keep that in mind.
  • Luke: Nevertheless, was this Jakes’ plan?  / Who are these men? Do you think Jakes sent them after us?
  • Emmy: So this is the meaning of “you will lose your lives within 24 hours.” / It looks like Jakes didn’t want to wait the full 24 hours to get rid of us.
  • Luke: So Mr. Barde was also like this… / Was Mr. Barde killed by these thugs?
  • Layton: Who knows, we can’t arrive a conclusion yet. / Unfortunately, we can’t say for certain.


In the original version, Emmy mentions having an uncle that does martial arts!! Right in the middle of the first game of the trilogy! And wow! We had to wait until Azran Legacy, but Japanese people had clues from the beggining! O.o

anonymous asked:

Gentrification is a good thing. Everyone wants to live on a cleaner, safer street with more commercial and retail opportunities. If you can't afford the rent, you can't live here. Move somewhere within your means.

Apparently you don’t understand what gentrification actually means and also you’re a clueless bigot. That sounds fun for the people around you.

anonymous asked:

I have almost $5k in credit card debt that I am trying to pay off. How do you stick to a budget? Sometimes I forget about the long-term reward and I just really want coffee made by someone else.

I stick to my budget because I have finite resources and refuse to take on debt from living beyond my means. In my mind, there’s no other choice. I spend according to my plan because I know that will keep me in the black and comfortable.

You are in charge of yourself and your decisions. You have to decide which you want more, coffee made by someone else or to be debt free?

It doesn’t have to be all or nothing.

Build that coffee into your budget. Give yourself $25 dollars a month to spend on someone else making you coffee. When it’s gone, it’s gone. Alternatively, you could spend a little more on the front end to buy specialty coffee beans that you grind and brew yourself at home as a compromise if you think that might satisfy your want.

If you want to be debt free and live within your means then you have to set realistic goals for yourself, in the form of a budget, and then stick to it. Think of all the things you could do with the money you free up after paying down that debt! You could save toward a larger goal, pay off other debt, you might even be able to fit another coffee drink in there 😜

Let’s take a quick look at the Class Confidential page from the press kit unboxing video, each character has a quick series of three questions and their answers seem to add another layer to everyone, I think. They really let you know even more who they really are as characters and people. 

Sam

Most Likely to:
Become an activist.
Where do you see yourself in 10 years?:
Making a difference in people.
Favorite Quote?:
“The opposite of anger is not calmness, its empathy.”
     -Mehmet Oz

Ashley

Most Likely to:
Publish a novel.
Where do you see yourself in 10 years?:
As a struggling writer in Greenwich Village!
Favorite Quote?:
“Someone has to die in order that the rest of us should value life more.”
     -Virginia Woolf

Josh

Most Likely to:
Work in the film industry.
Where do you see yourself in 10 years?:
Having a good time.
Favorite Quote?:
“It takes no imagination to live within your means.”
     -Francis Ford Coppola

Matt

Most Likely to:
Play in the NFL.
Where do you see yourself in 10 years?:
Giving my all for the team, no matter where I end up.
Favorite Quote?:
“It is not the size of a man but the size of his heart that matters.”
     -Evander Holyfield

Chris

Most Likely to:
Build an app.
Where do you see yourself in 10 years?:
Somewhere with better broadband
Favorite Quote?:
“If today were the last day of your life, would you want to do what you are about to do today?”
     -Steve Jobs

Emily

Most Likely to:
Work on Wall St.
Where do you see yourself in 10 years?:
Smashing through the glass ceiling.
Favorite Quote?:
“You gain strength, courage, and confidence by every experience in which you really stop to look fear in the face.”
     -Eleanor Roosevelt

Mike

Most Likely to:
Run for President.
Where do you see yourself in 10 years?:
Working hard and playing hard.
Favorite Quote?:
“Dream as if you’ll live forever. Live as if you’ll die today.”
     -James Dean

Jessica

Most Likely to:
Become famous.
Where do you see yourself in 10 years?:
Probably on TV.
Favorite Quote?:
“When I leave this world, I’ll leave no regrets.”
     -Beyoncé

It’s okay if you go to community college. I know schools really push higher learning on students and discourage community college, but it’s an incredibly smart and money saving decision. You can always switch schools after your gen-eds and you should always try to live within your means.

Andre Lyon’s Top 10 Financial Tips.

You’ll want to write these down!

Even if you’re not on the verge of becoming a billionaire like hip-hop impresario Lucious Lyon, chances are you can still benefit from improving your personal finances. We sat down with Empire Entertainment CFO Andre Lyon and asked for his top ten financial tips for the average person. You’ll want to write these down and keep them close by!

1. MAKE A BUDGET
This is your first step. Take it seriously. Budget realistically so you can see where all your money’s going month-to-month. You can’t map out a financial strategy unless you know where you’re starting. This will also help wean you off the bad habit of spending money before you get it.

2. PLAY THE LONG GAME
Like the saying goes, “All the glitters is not gold.” I can’t tell you how many new artists I’ve seen get signed to Empire, only to blow through their signing bonus buying fancy cars and clothes, trying to create the impression that they’re living on the same level as my father, who’s sold millions of records. They end up spending themselves into a mountain of debt. So even if you’re not a singer or rapper who’s signed your first contract, take my advice: slow your roll. Don’t let money burn a hole in your pocket. Keep your eye on your long-term goals.

3. SAVE, SAVE, SAVE!
This simply can’t be stressed enough. A lot of people are resistant to the idea of saving, but I always think of it as “paying yourself first.” Even if you’re already in the habit of paying all your bills and other debts as fast as you can, it’s time to change your mindset. In most cases, paying everyone else first will most likely leave you with very little money left to set aside, and you’ll continue living month-to-month with no way out.

4. CUT THE CARDS
Years ago, when my father first started making some good money from his record sales, he started getting bombarded with pre-approved credit cards. And I don’t think it’s telling tales out of school for me to say that he took full advantage of them…until I sat him down and showed him that he was just throwing money out the window in terms of interest payments. So I’ll tell you like I told him: figure out which two – yes, only two – credits cards you truly need to live on. Cut the rest in half. Ironically, the more income you make, the more those pre-approved cards will keep showing up, but you don’t have to accept them. Steer clear of the trap.

5. LIVE UNDER YOUR MEANS
You often hear people say, “live within your means.” I disagree. For the average person, living within your means gives you very little wiggle room in case of emergencies. So you should be living as far below your means as reasonably possible. Saving a good portion of your income is critical to long-term financial health.

6. GET ORGANIZED
Balance your checkbook. Put all your monthly bills in one place and pick a specific day out of the month to sit down and pay them. Create a filing system for your bank statements tax returns, and other financial paperwork. These small steps might seem like a waste of time, but once you get into the habit of doing them, you’ll find that they actually save you money. No more overdraft fees or interest charges on late credit card payments.

7. START INVESTING
Making people think they have to be millionaires in order to get into the investment game is one of the most effective tricks Wall Street has ever pulled. But that’s jut what it is: a trick. Anyone can invest, and it doesn’t require a huge amount of disposable income. You’ll have to take some time to do your research on this one, but trust me, this is where you want to start directing your energy. A simple savings account is nice, and easy for everyone to wrap their minds around, but they yield pretty much no return at all. If you want to start building a legacy – or even just a comfortable retirement nest egg – investing is the way to go.

8. KEEP A MONEY JOURNAL
If you’ve ever gone on a diet and had to keep a food journal, where you write down everything you eat or drink each day, then you’re already familiar with this practice. A “money journal” is just like it sounds: a written list of everything you spend on a daily basis, be it cash, check, or charge. If you do this for just four weeks, I guarantee that certain spending patterns will emerge, and you’ll be able to step back and take note of just how much money you’re devoting to things like lattes, movies, and snacks throughout the day. It all adds up pretty fast.

9. DREAM BIG
It’s okay to have big dreams. We all do. That’s exactly how Empire started out: my mother and father’s dream. A lot of people think my only job at the company is running around and stopping different departments from spending too much money. And yes, that’s part of it, but the reality is, sometimes you have to take big steps if you’re going to grow. So if you’re fantasizing about owning a big house or traveling around the world someday, let that motivate you. Just stay focused on your goal every single day.

10. NEITHER A BORROWER OR A LENDER BE
William Shakespeare said it best: “Neither a borrower nor a lender be, for loan oft loses itself and friend.” Now, this doesn’t mean you should never help anyone in need (nor should you be too proud to ask for help if you really need it), but it’s a situation you should strive to avoid. It’s usually a no-win situation for everybody involved.

Read the Open Letter to the CEO of Yelp thing. Also, the reactions to it.

It’s hilarious to me, how this now works.

“You should’ve expected to be fired for this.” Yeah. She did. But after months of starving herself and recognizing she will never claw her way out of this hole, she at least wants to say something. Of course, low wage employees should be silent and grateful for their gruel, right? How dare they talk back or have emotions.

“You complained about the snacks!” Complained? No, she said that the snacks provided at work are literally her only meal, the only food she can afford outside a bowl of rice every day. The only way to interpret what she said as “complaining about the snacks,” is in the context of “I am complaining that all I can afford to eat are snacks and am slowly starving.”

“What did you expect, living in an expensive area like the Bay Area?”

Counter question: Why is this never asked to the employers? So lets actually humor these chucklefucks and say that Yelp, one of the most well known and used websites, literally cannot afford to pay their employees a living wage… because its the Bay Area.

Why are they located there, then? Why are they not located in a more reasonable location that frees them up to pay a living wage? They’re the ones who picked that location and you want to tell me they have zero responsibility in this? No sale.

I mean, sure, if they moved to a less fancy area, they’d have to give up some local conveniences and networking opportunities and some of their favorite eateries, but hey, you have to make sacrifices when your new to the working world. That’s what it takes to “live within your means,” right?

“More whiny, entitled Millennials.”

Uh huh. The world will be a marginally better place when people who sneer at “millennials” finally fucking die.

Power to Talia Jane, and fuck Yelp.

anonymous asked:

How do I start practicing Hinduism exactly? What would qualify me as a practicing Hindu? I know the question is a little broad, I apologize for it. But I struggle to find good resources on what a practicing Hindu truly does. I know there is Puja on a daily basis, but what else?

Namaste,

Hinduism is not a religion merely contained in one scripture with its’ strict set of practices; Hinduism is Sanatana Dharma- the eternal way of life. One does not follow Hinduism, one lives as a Hindu. Hinduism encompasses the Vedic nature and sciences from a collective series of scriptures and ideals dating back to almost 7000BCE; these aspects make up the majority of Hindu knowledge and belief. Not all Hindus celebrate, practice or follow each one of these aspects, but instead, as Hinduism is an extremely personal religion, variations of these aspects will occur. Check out the “What is Hinduism?“ section of the blog to read more and browse through my current linked list of scriptures, practices and sciences included in Vedic tradition.

What would qualify you as a practicing Hindu? Swamiji Sivananda says one who puts perfect faith in the law of karma, reincarnation, has studied and practices the scriptures (Vedas, Gita, Puranas, etc.), worships a form of God (whether a Devi, Deva or some other figurative sense), prays or reveres to such God based on a schedule (called sandhya), reveres to deceased relatives or loved ones, takes care to clean oneself and reveres water, follows the Maha Yajnas (thankfulness to God, teachers, parents, the environment and others that have helped you) and one steadfast in his dharma is a Hindu.

However, I find a lot of people are a little lost on how to apply Vedic practices into their modern lives. I find that the 10 Vedic Living Rituals, or Yamas hold the most beneficial and spiritual results when one is looking for some core values to remember when they wish to make themselves a better Hindu. Here are the 10 Yamas: 

  • Yama 1 - Noninjury, Ahimsa

Practice noninjury, not harming others by thought, word or deed, even in your dreams. Live a kindly life, revering all beings as expressions of the One Divine energy. Let goof fear and insecurity, the sources of abuse. Knowing that harm caused to others unfailingly returns to oneself, live peacefully with God’s creation. Never be a source of dread, pain or injury. Follow a vegetarian diet.

  • Yama 2 - Truthfulness, Satya

Adhere to truthfulness, refraining from lying and betraying promises. Speak only that which is true, kind, helpful and necessary. Knowing that deception creates distance, don’t keep secrets from family or loved ones. Be fair, accurate and frank in discussions, a stranger to deceit. Admit your failings. Do not engage in slander, gossip or backbiting. Do not bear false witness against another.

  • Yama 3 - Nonstealing, Asteya

Uphold the virtue of nonstealing, neither thieving, coveting nor failing to repay debt.Control your desires and live within your means. Do not use borrowed resources for unintended purposes or keep them past due. Do not gamble or defraud others. Do not renege on promises. Do not use others’ names, words, resources or rights without permission and acknowledgement.

  • Yama 4 - Divine Conduct, Brahmacharya

Practice divine conduct, controlling lust by remaining celibate when single and faithful in marriage. Before marriage, use vital energies in study, and after marriage in creating family success. Don’t waste the sacred force by promiscuity in thought, word or deed. Be restrained with the opposite sex. Seek holy company. Dress and speak modestly. Shun pornography, sexual humor and violence.

  • Yama 5 - Patience, Kshama

Exercise patience, restraining intolerance with people and impatience with circumstances. Be agreeable. Let others behave according to their nature, without adjusting to you. Don’t argue, dominate conversations or interrupt others. Don’t be in a hurry. Be patient with children and the elderly. Minimize stress by keeping worries at bay. Remain poised in good times and bad.

  • Yama 6 - Steadfastness, Dhriti

Foster steadfastness, overcoming nonperseverance, fear, indecision and changeableness. Achieve your goals with a prayer, purpose, plan, persistence and push. Be firm in your decisions. Avoid sloth and procrastination. Develop willpower, courage and industriousness.Overcome obstacles. Never carp or complain. Do not let opposition or fear of failure result in changing strategies.

  • Yama 7 - Compassion, Daya

Practice compassion, conquering callous, cruel and insensitive feelings toward all beings. See God everywhere. Be kind to people, animals,plants and the Earth itself. Forgive those who apologize and show true remorse. Foster sympathy for others’ needs and suffering. Honor and assist those who are weak, impoverished, aged or in pain. Oppose family abuse and other cruelties.

  • Yama 8 - Honesty, Arjava

Maintain honesty, renouncing deception and wrongdoing. Act honorably even in hard times. Obey the laws of your nation and locale. Pay your taxes. Be straightforward in business. Do an honest day’s work. Do not bribe or accept bribes. Do not cheat, deceive or circumvent to achieve an end. Be frank with yourself. Face and accept your faults without blaming them on others.

  • Yama 9 - Moderate Appetite, Mitahara

Be moderate in appetite, neither eating too much nor consuming meat, fish, shellfish or fowl. Enjoy fresh, wholesome vegetarian foods that vitalize the body. Avoid junk food. Drink non-alcoholic beverages. Eat at regular times, only when hungry, at a moderate pace, never between meals, in a disturbed atmosphere or when upset. Follow a simple diet, avoiding rich or fancy fare.

  • Yama 10 - Purity, Saucha

Uphold the ethic of purity, avoiding impurity in mind, body and speech. Maintain a clean, healthy body. Keep a pure, uncluttered home and workplace. Act virtuously. Keep good company, never mixing with adulterers, thieves or other impure people. Keep away from pornography and violence. Never use harsh, angered or indecent language. Worship devoutly. Meditate daily.

Try practicing these 10 restraints to initiate a wholesome Hindu lifestyle. With much diligence in study, devotion and adherence to these Yamas, you will find yourself to be a very changed person for the better!

I hope I’ve helped you!

Jai Maa Saraswati!

August 10, 1985, Melbourne, Australia 
Excerpt from ‘I Am Your Sister’, Audre Lorde

I am here upon your invitation, a Black African-American woman speaking of the language of difference. We come together in this place on the 150th anniversary of the state of Victoria, an Australian state built upon racism, destruction, and a borrowed sameness. We were never meant to speak together at all. I have struggled for many weeks to find your part in me, to see what we could share that would have meaning for us all. When language becomes most similar, it becomes most dangerous, for then differences may pass unremarked. As women of good faith we can only become familiar with the language of difference within a determined commitment to its use within our lives, without romanticism and without guilt. Because we share a common language which is not of our own making and which does not reflect our deeper knowledge as women, our words frequently sound the same. But it is an error to believe that we mean the same experience, the same commitment, the same future, unless we agree to examine the history and particular passions that lie beneath each other’s words. When I say I am Black, I mean I am of African descent. 

When I say I am a woman of Color, I mean I recognize common cause with American Indian, Chicana, Latina, and Asian-American sisters of North America. I also mean I share common cause with women of Eritrea who spend most of each day searching for enough water for their children, as well as with Black South African women who bury 50 percent of their children before they reach the age of five. And I also share cause with my Black sisters of Australia, the Aboriginal women of this land who were raped of their history and their children and their culture by a genocidal conquest in whose recognition we are gathered here today. 

I have reached down deep inside of me to find what it was we could share, and it has been very difficult, because I find my tongue weighted down by the blood of my Aboriginal sisters that has been shed upon this earth. For the true language of difference is yet to be spoken in this place. Here that language must be spoken by my Aboriginal sisters, the daughters of those indigenous peoples of Australia with whom each one of you shares a destiny, but whose voices and language most of you here have never heard. 

One hundred and fifty years ago, when the state of Victoria was declared a reality for european settlers, there were still 15,000 Black Aboriginal people living on this land that is now called Victoria. Where we sit now today, Wurundjeri women once dreamed and laughed and sang. They nurtured this earth, gum tree and wattle, and they were nurtured by it. I do not see their daughters sitting here among you today. Where are these women? 

Their mothers’ blood cries out to me. Their daughters come to my dreams nightly in the Windsor Hotel across the street from your Parliament. And their voices are haunting and brave and sad. Do you hear them? Listen very carefully, with your hearts open. They are speaking. Out of their mouths come what you have said you most want to hear. 

Their history is my history. While white immigrant settlers in Australia were feeding Wurundjeri women and children bread made from arsenic and flour, white immigrant settlers in North America were selling seven-year-old African girls for $35 a head. And these same white immigrant settlers were giving blankets lethal with smallpox germs to the indigenous peoples of North America, the American Indians. 

Each of you has come here today to touch some piece of your own power, for a purpose. I urge you to approach that work with a particular focus and urgency, for a terrible amount of Wurundjeri women’s blood has already been shed in order for you to sit and write here. 

I do not say these things to instigate an orgy of guilt, but rather to encourage an examination of what the excavation and use of the true language of difference can mean within your living. You and I can talk about the language of difference, but that will always remain essentially a safe discussion, because this is not my place. I will move on. But it is the language of the Black Aboriginal women of this country that you must learn to hear and to feel. And as your writing and your lives intersect within that language, you will come to decide what mistress your art must serve.

This is the kind of love and support that I dream of. 

What does it mean to Let Go?

Made a rather difficult decision today to stop working for one of my best friends. It was definitely a lesson of learning to let go to embrace the new. It got me thinking about how surrender requires bravery, transformation and the ability to go beyond your limitations. 

To go beyond our limitations, we face a new strength. 
A fearlessness to push beyond the resistance
The layers of the old crumpling away. 

When we’re ready to let go, we say goodbye to the past with recognition of self-acceptance. 
That acceptance travels deep into the core of your body where you’re creating the new. 
It expands, multiples and ripples out into the ether, growing…
Planting new seeds of hope and triumph. 

When we’re ready to let go, we open ourselves towards surrender, the ever-lasting truth that lives within us. 

Letting go means endurance.
Means letting go of your resistance 
Letting go is bravery
Letting go of everything that doesn’t serve our highest good is the soul medicine we need to prosper. 
Let go of everything. 

You hold the key within your mind and you’re standing at the door of liberation

We surrender 
into 
Infinity

Just let it all go

How to Simplify your Life

1. Don’t try to read other peoples’ minds and don’t expect others to be able to read yours. Communicate if it is important to you.

2. Don’t expect to be friends with everyone. We all are different – and we all like different things. Instead, invest your time in a few good friends. That’s all you really need to feel happy and fulfilled.

3. Create a budget and live within your means. Accruing lots of debt will only cause you to feel stressed.

4. Kill off the monster of jealousy – and only compare yourself with yourself.

5. Organize your clutter and get rid of excess stuff. It will leave you feeling calmer, and will save you lots of time!

6. Stay on the sidelines and don’t get drawn into pointless scenes and dramas in other peoples’ lives (unless it’s a crisis – and you know you ought to help).

7. Finish what you’ve started - and then do something else.

8. Treat every person you meet with respect, and err on the side of being gentle and kind.

9. Accept that there are things that you can’t change or control – and focus on those things that you can change or control.

10. Admit when you were wrong, then say you’re sorry, and move on.

I’ve always had a goal. Something to work towards. Something to get up in the morning for. Something to hope for and to wait for and to grit my teeth and get through the hard times for. Books and inspirational quotes and motivational speakers always told me that was what life was about. You have to be driven every moment of your life and strive and strive and strive. 

I’ve never felt as if I’ve had enough. I’ve never been happy where I’m at. That unhappiness just led to more goals. To go from Point A to Point B, and once I got to Point B, I went to Point C. And then Point C to Point D. And then on and on, I suppose til I would die.

Goals are beautiful things. Striving towards something you want is a beautiful thing. But if you’re spending your entire life with your head staring straight ahead, lips pressed together, stopping at nothing, then you’re going to end up spending your entire life with your head staring straight ahead, lips pressed together, stopping at nothing. Nothing else. And then time is up.

Stop, loves. For a moment. Turn your head while you walk. Rest and learn. Talk to people. Talk to yourself. Listen. Close your eyes. Be mindful of where you are. You can want more for yourself, that won’t go away if you stop and look around for a bit. You can always go back to it if you need to. 

You are human. You are not a character in a novel. You are not the carefully arranged and staged and edited photograph you see on Tumblr. Use them for inspiration, they are beautiful in their own way, but do not hold them to a standard. You are much more complex and messy and filled with meaning and love and hurt and you are you. You do not have to live a forced life. You can bundle in blankets and watch Netflix for a day. For eight days. And enjoy every second of it. You can go to work and take a deep breath and be present and take note of what’s around you. Feel things. Laugh. Cry. Feel empty. Feel full. Feel nothing. Feel everything. But throw away the pressure to live a certain way. Live within your own means. Everyone is different. SO different. We all like different things. Only you know you best. 

I’ve given up a few dreams in the wake of this. One of those being ideas I had for taking Northern Made further. Giving up goes against every part of me. But I’m reminding myself that I’m not giving up, I’m gaining my life back. My present moments. I have a job I like. I have a home I like. I have people that I love in my life. I have activities that I enjoy. Everything that’s come into my life has been a result of hard work, but not towards specific goals. And it’s finally enough. 

7 LESSONS YOU LEARN THROUGH LIFE’S CHALLENGES

1. You need to change.

There are times when things go wrong in life. Most of us try to escape it, denying the truth life presents to us. When a problem occurs, most of the time it occurs because something is not right - you got sick because you haven’t been eating right; you are in hefty debt because you didn’t live within your means; you got backstabbed because you’re too trusting; your partner wanted to break up with you because you’re too controlling - the list goes on and on.

I strongly believe in the universal law of reflection and that everything and everyone in your life is a mirroring aspect of yourself. Every person you meet in life is showing up at the perfect time in your life to reflect something you need to heal within yourself. Every circumstance or situation in your life is providing you with the opportunity to learn something about yourself.  It may be a reflection showing some of your more positive traits or it may be showing you where you need to make some changes. 

So, if you don’t like the outside, you need to change the inside. Instead of looking at external circumstances and blame them for unfortunate life events, look at yourself first and see if there’s anything you can improve. Can you change the way you live so that your life situation can improve? Whether it be changing your habits, attitude, or outlook, you need to change in order to improve your life’s situation. Failing to accept the truth life presents to you, you will forever fall into the traps you can never seem to escape.

If you’re gonna make a change…operate from a new belief that says life happens not to me but for me.

- Tony Robbins

Everything happens for a reason and that reason leads you to another destiny. Accept the fact that shit happened to teach you something, to push you to grow, and to encourage you to change. Use this as a drive to make successfully change yourself for the better.


2. You can’t control life but you can control yourself.

There are circumstances in life that you can’t control i.e. being born into a dysfunctional family, losing your family member at a young age, becoming a victim of an unforeseeable accident, or having a cancer.

When you go through life’s challenges, you have the choice to either fall apart and become a victim of the circumstances, or you can rise up high and above others. 

- Mo Seetubtim

Surrendering to life, you become weak and vulnerable. You become easily influenced especially by bad influences such as drugs and alcohol which you’re told could help you heal pain. You become friends with bad strangers. You become sad and emotionally unstable which leads to depression and beyond.

However, if you realize that you are in control of yourself no matter what happens, you will not ignore the unfortunate circumstances and use them as springboards for the better you. You bring yourself to a healthy environment. You build yourself a support system. You surround yourself with good influences. You build yourself skills and never stop improving yourself.


3. You can’t change the way things are but you can change the way you look at things.

You cannot control what happens to you, but you can control your attitude toward what happens to you, and in that, you will be mastering change rather than allowing it to master you.

- Brian Tracy

Going through life’s challenges require strength - a lot of strength - both mental and physical because they go hand in hand. You need to stay strong. You need support from family and friends. Most importantly, you need to change your outlook on life. You need to understand that you can’t change the way things are but you can change the way you look at things.

The secret of success is learning how to use pain and pleasure instead of having pain and pleasure use you. If you do that, you’re in control of your life. If you don’t, life controls you.

- Tony Robbins

Use pain to motivate yourself - to become more determined, work harder, and succeed.


4. You are actually a very strong person.

A mind that is stretched by a new experience can never go back to its old dimensions.

- Oliver Wendell Holmes, Jr.

As a result of 2 and 3, you become a stronger person who is not afraid of anything in life. You know that no matter what happens you will be just fine. The strength you have built up over the years has become one of the most valuable assets you have. You know you have the willpower to combat anything in life.

Knowing that you are a strong person is a blessing. Because the power of the mind is very powerful.


5. You are your own worst enemy and your own best friend.

Your worst enemy cannot harm you as much as your own unguarded thoughts

- Buddha

Sometimes when life hits you with a brick, you just really hate yourself. You hate yourself for letting people who’ve done you wrong into your life. You hate yourself for not being more disciplined and doing the right thing. You hate yourself for what you did in the past which caused your life to go sideways. You just can’t forgive yourself. You feel sad, upset, and angry. You just keep thinking about this over and over.

However, having gone through a struggle, you realize that sometimes you can be your own worst enemy. You can choose to blame yourself for what’s gone wrong, or you can forgive yourself and move on. Dwelling on such thoughts can only create self-harm and delay healing. To be able to heal, you need to accept the circumstances, forgive yourself and your mistakes, and move on.

Time does not heal everything but acceptance will heal everything.

- Buddha

Ask yourself “What would you say to your best friend if your best friend was in the situation?” Will you put her/him down? Will you blame him or her even more for what went wrong? No, you would cheer your best friend up and try every way you can to make him/her feel better. So why aren’t you doing this to yourself? You can choose to be your own worst enemy or your own best friend. Choose wisely.


6. You realize who your true friends are

When you are up in life your friends get to know who you are. When you are down in life you get to know who your friends are. There will be many people who will be great to be around when times are easy. Instead take note of the people who remain in your life when times are hard. The friends that are willing to sacrifice their time and the resources they have in their life to help improve yours. Those are your real friends. A real friend is one who walks in when the rest of the world walks out.

These moments are crucial in life because it’s when you realize who matters and who doesn’t. Only true friends will stick by you through tough times, help you in every way they can, and are always there to listen to you.

Once you realize who your true friends are, cherish them. They are very hard to find.


7. You realize what matters and what doesn’t.

When you are in a good financial situation, you probably find joy through activities such as dining out, going to the pub, going to events, shopping, and traveling. However, when life gets tough, you cannot afford to do those things. If you spend time feeling sad about the situation and missing the things you used to get to do, then you’d be unhappy. But if you learn to enjoy the simple things in life, little by little, and appreciate what you have, then you would realize that life is not too bad after all.

Instead of dining out, you start cooking. Instead of going to the pub, you start staying in, watching tv and enjoying the company. Instead of going shopping, you learn to be happy with what you already have. Over and over this becomes a habit - you start to adopt a minimal way of life and find joy and happiness from the simplest things.

It’s okay to think a doll is too expensive...

… But that doesn’t mean it is then okay to go and steal it! So I am going to tell you a thing. 

Before I got into BJD’s I really liked Busou Shinki’s. I still have my collection. I still really like them. Even when I first owned BJD’s I got the odd one. However the price on them suddenly went up, and went up a lot… Like one that cost my partner about £60 GBP (which was an expensive one at the time), I last saw go for like £280 GBP when she does actually shows up. Ico my MNF Shushu cost me less than that. 

So I got to the point were I was thinking, wow I could buy a BJD for that… I can’t justify that! So I stopped buying them. I thought well I personally think they are too expensive for me. I was priced out of the hobby. That is perfectly fine. If people are willing to pay their current market price, then that is what they are worth. Just because I don’t think they are worth that, doesn’t mean they are not. 

Just I think for me I would rather have a BJD instead. 

So honestly even if Volks where the only company out there, and it was Volks or nothing. I would still think it was wrong to steal, and buy a recast. It is selfish, childish and entitled. They are a luxury. You don’t need them. Simple. I honestly don’t understand why there are so many of you out there that think it is okay to outright steal, and know what you are doing. The further the recasters go to what they are prepared to do to make money sickens me further. 

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