Small habits that can change your life goals.

 

Today I decided to share with you some habits that I have adopted not too long ago and that have considerably changed my outlook on life. These behavioral changes might have crossed your mind from time to time. You may even have adopted them on the short term, however have you tried on implementing them on the long run?

Well I have and for some time now I have been feeling at ease. Not only because I am religiously abiding by them, nope. But because with it came a sense of peace and acceptance of who I am and where my life is leading me. Such changes led me to re-inspect my life and the person that I am becoming irrelevant of my surroundings’ approval or not. One word of advice; we are the generation that is always blooming compared to our parents’ generation. Hence we should not let past generations keep us from going further.

Now to the subject matter in hand, the following is for you;

Less social media when you are out socially . Focus on the present and not past and future digital content on your phone.

Read Everyday . I am old fashioned and I love reading books. So should you. Reading expands the mind and enriches your vocabulary. Try it. And no, articles on some shady websites are not considered reading material.

Make your health a priority . By eating healthy and working out daily. The world (pollution) has changed and we no longer have the strong immune system our grandparents bragged about. Make time for your health.

Learn from people you admire . And that I say literally. When you are with the person you admire, pay close attention to his/her body language, communication skills and get motivated by that person’s positive push and accomplishments. If he/she succeeded, why can’t you?

Plan your day the night before . What works for me is writing down on a piece of paper next day’s tasks. Ticking them off one by one along the day motivates me to further end the day with everything I set my mind, to be done.

Take action, even when it’s scary . Nothing is scary in life. Being scared is a state of mind. Have faith in your self and bare in mind that you need to work a lot to make it happen in this world.

It is okay to be introvert . You don’t need to always be out there surrounded with people to make a statement. Sometimes it is okay to shy away from your friends. I happen to have a lot of those me, myself and I times and I quite honestly love them. These are the moments that are productive for your inner peaceful self.

Invest your time in the arts . Art, music, dance soothes the eye, the mind and the body. Try once in a while listening to an old record, going to an art exhibit or take some steps with the melody on the record player. Let me know what state of mind you will be afterwards.

You are your number one priority . Not your family nor your friends. You are. Never forget that.

We are already in March within the new year. Last year passed far too quickly. I vouched not to let 2017 pass quicker without putting myself on my top priority list. This behavioral decision might come as a shock to some people who always relied on my compassion and patience. This time round however, my adopted habits are staying on the long run and as an arabic saying goes “eza mich 3ajebkon, balto el ba7er” .

Thank you!

Bookish Bookworm’s recommendations!

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This year I took part in the #bookchallenge set on Instagram, by fellow book bloggers worldwide. While most of you follow fashion icons and fashionistas for beauty/ clothing tips, I, on the other hand love to follow bookish readers like myself. There are many book bloggers out there and I have come to like a few much more for their witty book reviews and recommendations (@crimebythebook @theguywiththebook @alice.in.wonderbookland @paperfury and etc…)

My challenge was to read 30 books within a year and I accomplished it by reaching 31, knowing fully well that I could have surpassed the limit by far more. Hence next year’s challenge being set to 50. I have a specific genre that I like to read and that is psychological thrillers, murders, mysteries. On the other hand, I like to drown myself into novels that are set in time and locations such as 18th century France or Britain with the clash between the royals and the common peasant. I know two extreme genres. And I like them the best. I have three pages of to be read books recommended by my fellow book bloggers (apart from the un-opened books left on my shelf) and I cant wait to start.

I was keen on sharing with you some of the books that I enjoyed much reading this passing year, hoping that I might spark some interest in you to devour as well;

Crimes & mysteries books > You have none other than James Patterson, Lisa Jackson and Mary Higgins Clark to dwell into. Michelle Davies’s “Gone Astray” is a very good read. Full of suspense and last minute twist to the plot.

One book that had me hooked for a whole week, day and night, was none other than “The Crow Girl” by Erik Axl Sund. To be honest, you need the stomach to read this last one as some scenes within are a bit too graphic and even for the strong hearted like myself, left me a bit queazy. Not recommended for sensitive readers.

crowgirl

My all time favorite crime author is Jo Nesbo. I don’t know what it is but I feel its the whole psychological challenge/ thriller that is behind his characters that has drawn me into his books. I recommend “The Snowman”. The latter left me exploring the same genre of writing within other Norwegian crime writers. I gotta thank @crimebythebook for encouraging me through her posts into exploring these crime authors.

Furthermore, if you are an avid historian and love the history behind the famous capitals of the world, I advise you to grab Edward Rutherfurd’s timeless books. I read “Paris” , “London” and “New York” and I travelled with the characters of each book within each century. Each city unfolds the lives of a few and more families who with each passing years intertwine together through love affairs, marriage and secret pacts. It is an enjoyable read for anyone wishing to escape their present state into the glorious past of of these capitals. The author has been awarded the Goodread choice Awards Best Historical Fiction. Goes without saying 🙂

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This last month, I decided to end my book challenge by exploring some readings from Middle Eastern authors. I came to realize that as a middle eastern, I related to the plots and stories within these books, my favorite authors being Elif Shafak and Ahdaf Soueif. I recommend “The Bastard of Istanbul” , “Honor”, “Three daughters of Eve”. Shafak tackles modern day issues within her books that any woman can relate to. Ahdaf Soueif’s writings are dreamy and poise. I would recommend “The eye in the sun”, and especially “The map of Love” . Before I forget, “The Yaacoubian Building” by Alaa Al Asarany is an enjoyable read. If you have the patience to read the story behind Rabih Alameddine’s “The Hakawati” then I would recommend you start right away and immerse yourself into the story telling of djinns, queens and kings and slaves.

thehakawati

I know I had started this post by wanting to recommend to you a few of my favorite books within each genre and I ended up pouring my heart out. It is good that I stopped and realized what I was doing before I opened up all my library’s collection.

You like crimes, do not hesitate and go straight away and explore jo Nesbo and his fellow crime authors. I know that is what I am gathering as TBR for 2017.

Moreover, I am challenging myself to read more Middle Eastern author’s  books as their content is surprisingly good.

Do you have any more recommendations for me? I would love to hear about it!

xo

BookReview: Honour by Elif Shafak

It hasn’t been long since I started reading novels from Middle Eastern authors, among whom Turkish writer, Elif Shafak, my first read being “The Bastard of Istanbul”.

“Honour” is my second read from the author and to be honest I was not 100% sure I wanted to tackle a subject that is controversial; honor killing. However, I slid the book among a couple of other, bought it, got it home and left it on my bookshelf for a few weeks before grabbing it for a night read a few days ago. Contrary to other books, I felt I was pushing myself to read the first couple of chapters before the plot started to unfold and the story behind the characters started to interest me.

“Honour” is the life of a Turkish/ Kurdish family who immigrated to London in the 1970s. The book is divided into different time span and space. We have a remote Kurdish village in Turkey around the 1940’s, London during the 1970’s. And at last, 1990’s London within the confines of a prison cell and the home of one of the characters, Esma.

The story is summarized as such:

Pembe and Adem Torpak leave Turkey for London. There they make new lives for their family. Yet the traditions and beliefs of their home come with them – carried in the blood of their children, Iskender and Esma. Trapped by past mistakes, the Torpak children find their lives torn apart and transformed by a brutal and chilling crime. Set in Turkey and London in the 1970s, Honour explores pain and loss, loyalty and betrayal, the clash of tradition and modernity, as well as the love and heartbreak that can tear a family apart.

The book narrates the murder of the mother figure of the Torpak family by her eldest son, Iskender, who in turn is paying for his crime in a prison cell and voicing his story through written letters (1990’s). If you have noticed I unconsciously wrote murder and not honour killing because that is what I believe it should be labelled. I, being firmly opposed to any kind of violence when diplomacy is an available option.

“Honour” further paints the level of intolerance of western countries towards immigrants. Something that is not far-fetched from modern day society. Moreover, it shows the resistance of full integration and clash of values between the immigrants and their adoptive country.

This book affected me. Born and raised in the Middle East, I have seen the importance of the role of the Arab man in society and especially within his family. I have seen the acceptance of the Arab women of their limited role as well. This model of upbringing clashed with my own upbringing which was a blend of Middle Eastern and western values (having lived in Canada during my childhood and stayed in the UK during my adulthood).

And like any story the end plot surprises the reader with a final twist. I am not going to say more. Grab the book and have a good read!

Yours truly,

Bookish Bookworm.. xo

 

 

Congrats! 20 signs that make you a “BookWorm”

I LOVE BOOKS!

I have always loved reading. I took part of the book challenge segment on Instagram (CR: of 27) this year and have more than 50 books to be read (TBR) waiting for me on the shelve. Added to that I am constantly growing my book list.

Help I’m a Book-aholic!

I sorted out a list below that are the symptoms of like minded people.

Enjoy the read!!

20 signs that will officially make you bookworm are the following:

. You have always been the kid with the book.

. You started wearing eyeglasses at an early age.

. Your parents always scolded you for reading past your bed time or/and (my fav) caught you reading with dim lights on (which they scolded you for it and found the cause of you wearing the eyeglasses in the first place).

. You always tuck a book in your purse.

. You walk the subway platform your nose in your book. You don’t mind waiting for a delayed bus as long as you are devouring that thriller with your eyes.

. You always try to read the title of the book anyone in public is carrying.

. Public Library card is a must in your wallet. You always wanna check out 5 books at a time but tend to only get 2 because of the time restraint.

. Panic attack occurs when you have finished your book and the library is closed the next day (F%$#K!!!!!!)

. You have a list of book to read ( which increases on a weekly basis).

. You have your shelves stocked with books that will take you a few months to finish yet you are still buying whenever in a bookstore.

. You liger hours at the bookstore. Swear you are not going to buy anything. Yet you can’t resist. One, just one!

. You always read the book before the movie.

. You always prefer the book to the movie.

. Sometimes you don’t even watch the movie. You don’t want to ruin the imaginative plot in your head.

. You prefer to stay in reading to going out on weekends.

. You go on dates with to Starbucks.

. You start following more bookish Instagram(mers) on social media and add their recommendations to your TBR list.

. You cannot resist smelling the inside of your book.

. You eye Kindle suspiciously . You will never switch to the E version format.

. You secretly wish to receive books as presents (and get all excited when you realize its format underneath the gift wrap).

SO are you a bookworm?

Trust me if not, you are missing on a lot.

xo