Saturday, 5 September 2015

Back To Basics

Might as well change the url to  "sawdadoesnotblog" or "sawdadoesnotblogoftenatall" because I have really not been on this for a while. Mainly down to procrastination; just being lazy but also due to my tendency to want to perfect everything. Some of you reading may have seen the multiple layout/colour/everything aesthetic changes to the blog has undergone and how now I've got a header and resulted back to a blogger theme I had at the start.

I feel like I needed to just backtrack and start from the beginning. Work my way up to where I want to be g r a d u a l l y . I say that in terms of the look, content and essentially feel of my blog but also in relation to other parts of my life and things that I do. I know I have this habit of trying to get everything right, I like to do things once and have them be excellent to match that image of excellence I have in my head, but recently (and this is a long-term, over the summer 'recently',) I have come to realise  that 'Rome was not built in a day' and its a step in the right direction that will get you closer and then eventually get you there.

I think the thing is with me is that I feel something/think something/want something, and I feel that thing with so much conviction I want it right this instant, or, I'm charging full speed ahead which is where sometimes you don't deep (appreciate, consider) your current position enough, and a bigger picture.  I become overwhelmed in the present and the 'go go go' blinded by the light at the end of the tunnel so much so I don't see the tunnel, or even the fact that I'm not in a tunnel at all. I wouldn't say I don't plan and think things through though, most people who know me wouldn't call me impulsive and I'll agree. I'm more of a sit down, plan a route and get there person. I like - no, LOVE method and strategy, there's something so reassuring in it.... 

But the point I'm trying to make is that's it's okay to go slower, just as long as I'm moving. Because another thing I've realised is I take big leaps fuelled by enthusiasm then just stop. Possibly to "recharge", possibly because I'm burnt out, or maybe even because I just didn't have the right fuel, and use it correctly. Similar to a car, for example. I see the cars that are driving fast and I want to drive as fast or faster. I think "how do you do that?" "Press accelerate of course!" And so that's what I do, I press, I am going forward but in some cases I'm not driving as well as I should. I may not be driving in a straight line, I may be running out of petrol and I'm wondering why? I may even bring down or crash. 

In terms of the blog I came to a point where I had to brake because my level of expertise isn't there yet. I didn't realise all the other elements of speed needed to drive well. In other cases I was so caught up in the present that the quality decreases. Each case is different but I feel they're all related in one way or another because one they have made me realise:

(1)Excellence is habit. I'm keeping my ambitious ways, but now I'm taking more into consideration when planning. Being easier but not lazy with myself, and appreciating more now at this point that baby steps are the beginning, and the consistency of a good thing will get me there. 

(2)Not being one track minded is a good thing. Flexibility even in a dream is okay because it's not just be image I'm going for, but the internal feeling of satisfaction that is achievable in other. So as much as I may have planned a route to a destination, I have grown to understand that diversions can be okay.

So what I have decided to do with a lot of things is go back to the drawing board and draw, plan better and be just as ambitious. However, now I am baring a lot more in mind about steady growth and put a few more checks in place to be more conscious of myself. I've got to read and research more, whilst learning that patience is a virtue. To make perfect, I've got to practice, which takes time that I've got to live through. Furthermore, I've got to bare in mind that everything that is meant for me will come to me, and if I do my bit, the only thing I am waiting on is Allah. Sometimes Qadr of Allah doesn't work in what I see as my favour, but "what has reached you was never meant to miss you and what has missed you was never meant to reach you" right? And Allah tells us if we go to him walking, He will come to us running, in the sense that if I put the effort in, I'll get that back plus more. Maybe my almost rushing into things was me forgetting that sense of faith I've also got to have in Him and His plan. I may even have to walk on a few paths that I didn't intend to, but that too is okay. 


I feel like going back to square one, clicking this metaphorical restart button, is a chance to widen my mental horizons, gain a different and more developed perspective.An opportunity to live a little, fill my lungs with this fresh new air and just -  more importantly - breathe.


Saturday, 18 July 2015

Enrichment Week

What have I been up to which stops me from posting regularly?

Well, this week was enrichment week where we were off school timetable and went about multiple activities. I was more than busy - everyday had me coming home and crashing just anywhere and anyhow.

Monday: 
Wasn't spent at school, I spent the day exploring London essentially, and visiting the science Musuem to find out more about computer science. I realised that London is large, definitely a place I want to explore this summer.


Tuesday:


Wednesday:
AS booklet deadline. 1st draft personal statement deadline. Coursework Deadline. So basically deadlines. The afternoon also brought about Prize Giving where I won an award for Computer Science (Woop!)



Thursday:
International Day. We had several workshops based on subjects across the curriculum but focused on the international concepts. I couldn't say I didn't enjoy my time today especially with the Street Art activity at the end. We had to draft street art before actually getting to spray, but by the time we got to the wall we just decided to have fun and try and make our mark. In need of a new artistic hobby? I recommend street art ( in legal areas only though).




Friday:
Friday was Eid! Eid was busy, just like the rest of the week, but was nice in the sense that I did see friends and family even if it was for a short while. I think I ate more on Eid than I did the rest of the week, but hey, that's part of celebration right?


After coming home on Eid day, I literally collapsed onto the sofa. I had loads of things to blog about so I decided to put them in one post to try and give you a flavour of what I am up to. Hopefully my summer will be filled with activities, experiences and lessons that gives my a lot to blog about too.

Watch this space!


Tuesday, 30 June 2015

Ramadan Week 1

(I just want to start of this post by saying that I do realise that week one has passed, but being busy has meant that I posted this late...apologies!)

I knew I'd be tired, but I didn't imagine I'd be so busy and so drained! I thought that post-exams meant I would be free, and will have plenty of time to focus on several things but...I was too wrong!

The biggest thing this month for me however, would have to be concentrating on my fasting. Not many people remember or even realise that fasting in Islam is not just meant to be for the sake of being hungry but to increase 'Taqwa' - a sense of God-consciousness. I wouldn't say that it has been easy or I have been perfect but I can say I have been trying, and my empty stomach does remind me.

Ramadan has also made me realise that in this country at least we have SO MUCH food, an excess even. I have managed to collect snacks almost every day from my friends to eat later, even though I know that I have a consistently full fridge and freezer at home. I take the snacks because I've been given them and at the time I am hungry but in honesty I get to Iftar (when you break your fast at Maghrib - 4th prayer at sunset) and feel like I didn't even need them.

A lot of people seem to think that we fast for the poor, who are people you remember when fasting, but really and truly one fasts for themselves and for what they gain  out of it.

Right now I am currently looking to make the most of the month, as a blessed month like this should not come and go without one seeing something bettering themselves in one way. I think in conclusion I've realised that its not the hunger, thirst and physicality of Ramadan that one should focus on but but the character development and the more spiritual side of the month that I for one need to consider and bare in mind more.

To anyone fasting out there,May Allah make this fast beneficial for us, Ameen.

And to everyone else, watch this space!

Wednesday, 17 June 2015

Post-Exams

Its pretty obvious that blogging has not been on my recent list of  'things to do' seeing as my exams just seemed to take over life completely - but I am back (and freeeeeee)! Back and better I would like to think; you can see that there's been a change in the blog theme, and as I strengthen my coding abilities  hopefully we'll see some more.

Inline images 1
Code Academy, still with the basics here
Ramadan has just began and I am B U Z Z I N G. Its the best month of the year hands down for reasons that could take me an infinite amount of time to explain. Going to school will be hard and I couldn't even say that I have the most structured 'Ramadan plan' if any at all, but I am excited for what it will bring.
Ramadan Kareem to my brothers and sisters out there.

Make sure you watch this space!

Tuesday, 24 March 2015

Tumblr

I've recently spent a lot of the free time that I use not studying, sleeping, eating (and all of the other essentials, which kind of isn't free time if I'm honest...*1) surfing the internet and social networking, particularly on Tumblr.
Its a softer blogging medium. Here on blogspot I feel like I have to have a bit more to say,I should plan behind my worlds and I have to think about how I am trying to iterate a point. However, on Tumblr, there seems to be a bit more...freedom, I guess.That may be because I tend to spend my time  clicking 'reblog' 'like' and 'follow', rather than making posts like I do here but it is generally a softer medium because of this. I was strolling - or scrolling*2- through Tumblr one day and I literally stumbled across the most revealing thing about a person I knew in real life, but didn't actually know closely.

For the years I've known this person, I've completely misjudged them, not badly or negatively but I was completely unaware of the person they are and discovering their Tumblr by complete accident was a big revelation to me. It was a shock to see this person blossom from behind a computer screen, to be humanised by Tumblr. So I wrote this post below, expressing that: 



I was genuinely moved, reading their posts and even their Tumblr bio could have made me shed a tear. I felt that for the half an hour or so I was exploring her page and person I was part of a high school movie scene because it was so surreal; more than coincidental to stumble across their page, I mean, what were the actual chances! 

It opened my eyes and made me appreciate social media for what good it can bring. There are individuals that use the internet and social media for bad personality revelations, such as being bullies, trolls, "Twitter warriors" and the likes, but this was somewhat a beautiful example of how the internet gives a platform for people to be free , their "entire self" as I've put it.

So I sit here and shoutout to the creators and even users of social media, not only for giving me an activity to do in my free time*3 but for giving people like this person a platform of confidence, I thank the Lord for bringing me to this, for opening my eyes and making me appreciate that there can be more to people than what meets the eye too, and that may be a really good thing.

(This is thepoint in which you follow my Tumblr if you have an account and you haven't already: My Tumblr

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Sunday, 8 March 2015

International Women's Day




As a young woman, I feel that a day like this is absolutely necessary in a global society. In the East and the West. women endure a constant battle to be valued appropriately and to be treated right, and today, the 8th March is the day that all the work that has been done is celebrated as women (and supportive men) stand up and show the world what we're really about.

I'm also glad to see the lack of discrimination in race and religion when celebrating the achievements of what we've done for the world. It's good to see the unity of femininity , all for a great cause.

Below are just a few inspiration women.




Oprah Winfrey, this lady...
 Rosa Parks: Standing up - or correctly: sitting down for what she believed in

Image result for william sisters
William sisters changed the game (-of tennis- quite literally)!
Image result for katniss everdeen
Fictional but fierce, firey, and fabulous

Suffragettes, thanks for the vote

Gulabi Gang. Actual Squad Goals. Not a force to be reckoned with


Image result for angelou maya
Maya Angelou, who's famous 'Phenomenal Women' poem is found below.
Phenomenal women – maya angelou 
If you don't know about them, read and learn about them. And find more, there are so much more to be found and recognised.



Happy International Women's Day!

Sunday, 1 February 2015

Changes

For over a month now, my blog name has been "changing", as I'd grown tired of my blog name. I felt that it had to go, it was all a bit of a mouthful and just wasn't the one, and so I made the decision to remove it. But to what? The idea had been growing at the back of my mind for a while now and so I knew I wanted to do it, only thing holding me back was the new name. There was none. And so, as to not procrastinate, I got rid of the name and set it to"changing". Coincidently in that in the time that I've gone through some changes in parts of my life, some minor and some in progress but changes nonetheless.
I did doubt the change, because I don't like being indecisive, and it won;t be good for important factors like consistency.But change is good, great sometimes even. Here are some reasons to embrace change:  Click!


 The new name? The SawdaSphere. We have the atmosphere the stratosphere and many other '-spheres', so this blog is essentially mine. Cheesy? Maybe, but I think I'll get used to it. If not I'll just have to keep on changing it won't it?
I like this word and  I've gone through a bit of this. Maybe we can add "changing one's blog name " to the deifnition?

Welcome to the SawdaSphere :)

Sunday, 11 January 2015

New Year's Resolutions

I tell myself every year that they're useless, how the stats show that the majority of people that make them don't keep them. I've had doubts as to whether I should create some, but in retrospect of my last year I think that New Year's Resolutions would be the best thing for positive change.

1. Look after my  body

Typical. Almost everybody that has New Year's Resolutions has one to "be healthier", "visit the gym more", "look after my skin", right?  But as of late a lot of things have been steering me to looking after myself more. I think as a young person who is satisfied with their physical image and rarely falls ill I take my health for granted. All the things that I may be complimented on now are not guaranteed especially if I don't take care of them. I definitely don't want to lose my positive attributes, and on top of that regret them, so doing things like looking after my skin, exercising, looking after my diet, my teeth, my hair are all on the list for maintaining this year.

2. Self Care





Looking back on last year I feel I've been too nice, too easy, too cowardly towards people for the sake of being diplomatic or agreeable. I've given more than second chances, let things slide and shrugged them off my shoulders due to my easy temperament towards people, forgiving forgetting nature. So this year, I'm not looking to be cruel, but to be wiser and learnt to put myself first a bit more. Less second chances, less cowardliness, and generally a more honest, deserving treatment of myself.





3.TtTs

I felt that I need to be more productive, achieve more, just so I'm more accomplished after a certain period of time i.e a year. So, I've created the TtTs. Tasks to Tackle. This will consist of me giving myself 10 tasks that need to be completed before the end of that month such as reading a book, memorising a certain bit of Quran or reading its tafsir, researching, tidying, buying this, fixing this,experimenting, you get the gist? I'm also considering doing quarterly, semi-annual,summer, autumn, TtTs for tasks that may be more long term,short term or done in a certain season. I can also record these somehow at the end of the year I can look back and feel accomplished; know that I have progressed in some way shape of form.

4.Be creative, crafty and skillful

I was recently looking back on my school work, particularly art work and graphics coursework, and my sister said "ah, you're actually good at art..." (or something along those lines,) and I agreed. I also miss learning languages which I am quite interested in, and making things, doing crafty, creative things.In one way or another, I'm going to be more creative,experimental and innovative.

5.Money

Every teen of my age seems to want more money, but it seems to make the world go round, its definitely needed. This year not only do I want to make money, but save better, and manage my finances more.Unlike most, I would like to have money not just to spend on myself, but to also spend on experiences with my family and friends, especially my sisters.

6.Be organised

Its essential, and with the pressure of A-levels I think now is a better time than ever to become properly organised, not half organised or even 75% organised with my life, but 100%. So that means timetables, schedules, planners, punctuality and being on point. Hopefully going to create a habit of being organised to the extent that by the end of the year sufficient organisation is not a task but an effortless habit.

Bought myself a diary. I like it especially because purple.


7. Be consistent




Consistency is the "key to success" and so to be successful in these resolutions, ttts and everything o do I'm going to be consistent. Many a time I've stated something and stopped, I've picked up a habit to drop it again and this year is the year I'm going to break the habit and be more productive with my actions. 




Thursday, 1 January 2015

#2014TaughtMe


What a year
A lot.

Sitting here writing this post on page 365 of 365 has made me realise that an actual whole year has passed. That is a lot of time, a lot of time to learn,to grow and experience many things.

The first thing I really learnt this year, is "Carpe diem" - seize the day.

 Looking back has made me realise that I may have missed out on opportunity, simply because I was shy, lazy or procrastinated with what I needed to do. One of the worst feelings is regret; not for what is done, but for what could have been. As much as I have to keep on moving (another thing I've learnt), I do tend to look back for reasons of self evaluation and realise that maybe I could have been better, or different with a little more go and action.

 To balance this out though, I have also told myself that beating yourself up over what is done won't help anyone. I've read that for every minute of sadness, anger, stressing you lose 60 seconds of joy, which is true. As much as sometimes one can't help these emotions, with current retrospect, I've come to realise that maybe there were situations that I could have taken it easier/ been more relaxed.

Thirdly, I've told myself to not assume, and to especially not do so in such a positive manner.

This comes from the unfortunate experiences where I have been let down by people in different cases and ways. Sometimes I feel that I may have high hopes and such a positive mindset that being let down comes more often, but building hope on what isn't certain I feel is more of the problem. High hopes and dreams add drive and motivation to people, so I'm keeping the ambition and working on where I put my trust, hopes and expectations.  I have learned as much as I can hope I have to expect the unexpected, and even the worst. People aren't me, and don't see things or exoect things, or have the same mindset I do so if it doesn't come from me, then I really can't be sure, and that life throws curve balls of misfortune that I'll have to deal with.

I've also opened my eyes to the way people are, the way people and the way people see me. I can't help people's perception of me, but at the same time being aware of what people view can be used to my benefit.

(At this point the bells of Big Ben are ringing, 2015 is here!)

I guess my future hold me trying to find a balance between caring and acting upon it, and not caring and taking people's judgement in my stride.

2014 has taught me a lot of lessons, but 2015 is here and so I feel like I should end this post.

Bring on the new year, bring on 2015!