Wednesday, February 12, 2014

How to Read More Books

 
 
I've come across countless amounts of people who seem to either not have enough time to read throughout the day or just can't find the desire to read. Perhaps these tips might be of some help:

Read in intervals. For those of you with a busy schedule or for people who are too hyper to sit down to read for long periods of time, read 5-10 pages of a book, take a 20 to 30 minute break to something else (whether it's working, cleaning, participating in other hobbies, etc), and then come back and read 5-10 pages, and then take another 20 to 30 minute break. I'm an incredibly hyper person who hates to sit still or do anything for longer than a few seconds at a time, so this is incredibly helpful. You may think you don't have time to read, but if you schedule short periods of time throughout your day, you'll be able to get through a book within a short time span.

Force yourself to read. Obviously it's not necessary to participate in any hobbies that you do not want to do. Not everyone enjoys reading. But if you take the time out to try to read, you may just so happen to change your mind. Pick up some books that you may be interested in, and force yourself to read a few pages, to see if you like it.

Stop the distractions. Tv, off. Internet, off. And unless music helps you to focus, turn that off too. Don't worry. Don't think about things that need to be done. Be alone. The best way to keep focused during reading is, as we all know, to stop with the distractions. Schedule some quiet time throughout your day to be able to read in peace. Pick your favorite room, cuddle up in a nice soft blanket, and try to make your environment as serene as possible. Perhaps even light a nice scented candle and turn on a table lamp and try to avoid really bright lights. I like to do this for an hour or so. I call it my Quiet Hour. I'm easily distracted, even by my own thoughts. But I've noticed that this is a good way to get started on trying to stay focused.

Don't read too much. I've noticed many people who overdo it with reading and will read too many books at once and then get sick and tired of reading and will then not pick up another for a few months. There are other hobbies in this world besides reading. I know, shocking, right? You may think it's the best thing ever, but if all you do is read, you're going to get sick of it eventually. I remember I once spent all day every day for a week during summer break reading all I could get my hands on, and after that week was over, I didn't want to see another book for a long time. Just like too much cake can be bad for you, so can reading. I know it sounds odd to be recommending not to read too much when I'm trying to give tips on how to read more. But you're not going to be reading more if you tire yourself out by reading too much. Get my drift? Spend time doing other hobbies, communicate with people, and go outside and take walks.

Make it a habit. Read daily and turn it into a habit rather than something you do every once in a while.

Read what you want to read. If you like romance novels, read romance novels. If you like classics, read classics. If you like children's books, read children's books. This seems like something everyone would already know, but there's too many people who will choose to read something that they don't even like simply because they think that that's what they're supposed to be reading. Or because they don't want to get made fun of by other people for what they like to read. There is a time for reading for leisure and a time for reading for work. You don't have to read all classics and be challenging your brain at all times. And there's way too many adults who need to get off their narcissistic thrones and stop thinking that they should only read adult books or books that challenge them or are difficult to read, just so they can pride themselves on that. I've seen people shame other people for liking YA (young adult) books, children's books, and so on and so forth. I've even heard someone say that people who read anything other than challenging, adult literature, are disgraces to humanity and that they should be ashamed of themselves for liking anything such as Harry Potter, because OH THE HORROR, it's for children. Oh no!

Please don't be ashamed of whatever you like to read. Reading is for fun and for learning. It's not to be a pretentious snob. Read a variety of books, and don't let people shame you into only reading certain things instead of what you truly love.

Set aside money each week for books. Books can be really expensive, and if you're going to get into the habit of reading, you'll need to set aside a certain amount each week for book money.

Get a Kindle, Nook, or other e-reader device. These make it so much easier to read, and there's a lot of free e-books available. Plus there's no clutter! Physical books are great, especially because you can use them as decorations. I love hardcover books such as the leatherbound classic of Alice in Wonderland. Books like that just make beautiful decorative pieces for your bookshelf. But there comes a time where you'll either run out of space in your house or will not feel like carrying around books wherever you go, and e-readers are a great lightweight alternative.

Thanks for reading, and stay tuned for more random ramblings!

Monday, February 10, 2014

Valentines Day for Singles



A lot of people despise Valentines Day, mainly because of the consumerism, and, of course, the fact that couples should be romantic towards each other whether it's a holiday or not. But there's also some that hate V-Day because they're single. It's not fun to be sitting around self-pitying yourself because you don't have a relationship on Valentines Day. There's many people who will tell you nowadays that you can still have fun on V-Day, even while single. But how do you implement fun when you're sitting around feeling sad? Well, I'm here to give you a few tips.

Count your blessings. You can do whatever the heck you want on Valentines Day. You don't have to plan to do something that your boyfriend or girlfriend would like to do. You can do whatever you want, regardless of whether someone else likes it. There's no one around to complain.

Love yourself. You do not need to be in a romantic relationship to have someone who loves you. You can love yourself and compliment yourself. Don't get into a state of having low self-esteem and thinking that you need to be have a boyfriend or girlfriend to feel worthy. And don't forget, there's likely someone out there who loves you already.

Buy your own candy. No need to worry about getting some random type of candy or getting something that you don't even have use for. You can go shopping and pick out whatever you want to treat yourself for V-Day.

Ignore it. When I say ignore it, I mean ignore the feelings of sadness. Because, obviously, they may creep up on you when you see happy couples snuggling on love day. Remind yourself that you do not need to be in a romantic relationship to feel complete, and that you have plenty of people who love you. I know that repeating that to yourself won't make the feelings of sadness go away, but you may start feeling a little bit better.

Watch a comedy. Many people suggest watching romantic movies if you're single on Valentines Day, but I really don't see how that will help if you're feeling sad that you're single. That will just make it worse! Watch a funny comedy that has nothing to do with romance of any sort, and proceed to laugh out loud.

Pick a valentine. Valentines Day does not have to be about romantic love. A family member can be your valentine, as well as a friend. V-Day should be about universal love and showing people how much you appreciate and care, and not about making googly eyes at a boyfriend or girlfriend. If you don't necessarily have any friends or family, volunteer and show your love that way. You can hand a homeless person $20, gather up some stuff to give to Goodwill, volunteer at a soup kitchen, have a fundraiser, and so on and so forth. Everyone deserves love, and not just people who are closest to you. If you can't get out to volunteer, there's plenty of online sites that you can volunteer on, like Care2.com.

Here's some other tips on how to spend your day:

Order some food to-go
Read a book
Paint
Write a book
Take a walk around your neighborhood
Soak in your bathtub
Organize your room
Sleep through Valentines Day

...or if you still can't get over the sadness of being single on Valentines Day, proceed to snuggle up in a blanket and cry.
 
There are more important things in life than making sure you have a boyfriend or girlfriend. Making yourself happy, loving yourself, spending time with your family and friends, doing good things for other people, and bringing meaning to the world are all more important things than being in a romantic relationship.  Remember that.

I'm going to be single on Valentines Day, and I'm used to it as I've been single every V-Day. I used to lay around feeling sorry for myself, but I really don't care for a romantic relationship anymore. I think there's more important things in life and there's also the fact that romantic relationships seem rather boring and shallow to me.
 
 This year I am going to be spending my day showing love to other people by making gifts for people, having giveaways, and volunteering. I'm going to hang out with my family, who mean more to me than some random guy who would just break up with me if I ever don't fit his standards, and then I'm going to go buy myself something nice and then spend the remainder of my day participating in hobbies that I enjoy, like painting and reading, without having to worry about spending the day on a date with a guy.  I personally think I'll have more fun than I would if I was in a relationship.

If you're single, I hope you'll also spend the day being happy, rather than wallowing in sadness.

Thanks for reading and stay tuned for more random ramblings!


Monday, January 27, 2014

HGTV Dream Home Sweepstakes


Just thought I'd mention this awesome sweepstakes that's going on. If you enter, you have a chance to win an absolutely beautiful house. You can enter twice a day, once on HGTV.com and another on FrontDoor.com.

Enter twice online per day — once on HGTV.com and once on FrontDoor.com — for your chance to win the luxuriously furnished HGTV Dream Home 2014, a new mountain-style getaway located in the Truckee, Calif., community of Schaffer’s Mill, plus an All-New 2015 GMC Yukon Denali and a $250,000 cash prize provided by Quicken Loans.

Here's a picture of the house from HGTV.com:


HGTV always hosts these awesome dream home sweepstakes every year, and it's always exciting to wonder if maybe you could win. Obviously you can't win if you don't enter, so go ahead! It only takes a few seconds. I know you may think that the odds are very low of ever winning, but if you don't try then you'll never know. The entry form is here.

Also, if you don't like the home, you have the chance of winning the cash option, which is $1,050,000.00.

Thanks for reading, and stay tuned for more random ramblings! :)