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Six things I loved in October

November 7, 2016
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All things self-compassion

Remember when Brene Brown’s first Ted Talk went viral and the internet was all aflutter about vulnerability. I think self-compassion might be next. I read this in The Atlantic, which lead me here and then I saw that video and it prompted me to rest. Internet, that never happens.

With Her

You know I love podcasts and was intrigued by With Her, Hillary Clinton’s campaign podcast. Apparently her team thought that audio could be a good format for her and they were right. Tonally, this captures something special – it’s intimate without being saccharine, it has a ‘behind the scenes’ vibe but without being showy. It’s due to the deft production of the Pineapple Media crew.

Planning on paper

I’m a systems nerd. I enjoy technology. Jenny describes stress as a systems problem. I like that, because it means that there can be a systems solution. I’ve tried a bunch of task management tools and processes – todoist, workflowy, asana, bullet journalling, fancy (& expensive) planners, google docs, word docs – and am slowly evolving a system that works. The only system you need is the one that works. One thing is for sure though, I plan best on paper. I can’t do exclusively on paper – my life is too big, busy and complicated for that – but I need to start on paper and I need to do the day to day on paper. So, a simple moleskine with a simple pen is bringing me much peace this month.

How to describe colours

The internet is full of bullshit, but every now and then you happen upon something sweet and earnest and very, very useful. This list of how to describe colours to someone who can’t see falls into that category.

For example, blue:

“They put my hands in their pool. They told me that that sensation I felt while swimming, that omnipresent coolness, that’s blue. Blue feels like relaxation.”

Read the full list here. It’s ok to weep. 

Meatballs

During a stressful 24 months, I made a lasange almost every week. I still make lasange several times a month. There’s something about the linear process, the layering and most important, the giant dish of healthy, warming food that has kept me sane and nourished amidst the stress. That said, when I started writing in earnest again, I knew I needed a hobby. I picked cooking because I knew it’d align with my parallel goals of self-care/saving money. These meatballs were among the first things I tackled and because they were simple and turned out deliciously, they gave me confidence to keep cooking. Also, Julia Turshen’s positivity and warmth just radiates off the page/podcast. Her love of food stoked mine.

Compound Interest

I have very strong feelings about women and pensions. Mostly, that if you’re a woman, you need to have one. I started mine about a year ago and though it’s still very modest, knowing that this little pile of money is growing brings me great comfort. Compound interest is my favourite thing about maths. Most women don’t ask about benefits. This, coupled with the fact that you’re likely to live longer and earn less over the course of your working life than a man means that you gotta, gotta, gotta have a pension. Even a small one. To whet your appetite even more, did you know that you can get 20% back tax free when you turn fifty? And sure that’ll be here before we know it!

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