Stolen or Inspired

Stolen or Inspired

Via  Sanah

Recently, I read an interesting article by a friend of mine in which she spoke/wrote about the redundancy of ideas (inspiration) and the subsequently similar results of those ideas. She wrote about the blurred lines between originality and redundancy and it got me thinking –  where does inspiration end and stealing begin? How can we be inspired and yet be original? After quite a bit of thinking, chaos,  and introspection I think I have an answer.

To be inspired is a feeling of euphoria and of impending achievement.

To be inspired is a feeling of euphoria and of impending achievement.  Inspiring people are usually found under the umbrella terms of original, authentic, and successful (among many others). So what makes inspiring people so inspirational?  What makes you and me, want to listen to someone or even be like someone?

The idea of originality.  The idea, the perception that the person in front has something that I don’t have and to achieve what they have I must listen to them. To be inspiring one must say or do something that is so unique or so distinctive that it makes you want to listen. And so we listen.

We listen, we get inspired. If the person is an abstract individual in your life, you’ll listen better. But if it’s a friend or an acquaintance we tend to be more envious than inspired, but that’s a topic for another day. So we listen, we get inspired and then we emulate.

Originality is not a fundamental structural change, it is a very small personal twist, to a fundamental basic.

This is where it gets tricky and where the actual article begins. Originality is not a fundamental structural change, it is a very small personal twist, to a fundamental basic. For example, all clothes are made in some basic cloth – denim, chiffon, satin, etc. How one designs it is what makes it different from the rest. Similarly, life is repetitive, ideas are repetitive, people are repetitive.

To be inspired is to take a step into the pool of one of the repetitive ideas in this world and do something with it that is so unique that you yourself become an inspiration. In essence, there is very, very little that can distinguish you from a million others doing the exact same.  So here comes the twist. The ‘twist’, that ‘personal touch’ is what will distinguish an idea as original. A million people, actually more, about 42million  people have blogs, yet only a handful are commercially successful.

To be original is a major pressure we put on people. In a world where we seek familiarity but value originality, it’s difficult to strike a balance between telling your unique story in a way that resonates with others and is yet unique.

So when you begin to tell your stories or your business or whatever, you will have more in common with others than you’d like. To put it more simply – a business arises from a need. the need is the idea. The solution is the inspiration.

So be inspired, be unique and then be original. Because business ideas aren’t original but what you do with them is.

I’ll see you next Wednesday, so keep thinking, keep getting inspired, keep changing the world.

Love,

sr

Does Unconditional Love Exist?

Does Unconditional Love Exist?

Via Sanah Rizvi

Love by itself is a strange topic to talk about. Not due to the lack of content or theories but in fact due to the large volumes of perspectives and theories about the same. I am a firm believer of all things good and love is definitely one of them. And so, recently when I came across an article in which the author worked hard to prove that unconditional love does not exist, as I read through it, I was more and more convinced that it does indeed exist but I also realized that the prerequisites to ‘unconditional love’ were probably what were different.

So, let’s start from the beginning.

I was born and brought up in a culture that applauded respect towards elders, tradition and compromise.

I was born and brought up in a culture that applauded respect towards elders, tradition and compromise. The Indian culture taught me to be caring and compassionate towards others and myself. I learned that, because society treats  men and women differently, I may need to compromise more in life than my male counterparts, especially as and when I work towards a more just and equal society. And though, as a teenager, I resented the thought of compromise,  I do think that it is the best lesson I could have ever learned and witnessed in my life. The distinction though, that allows me to be proud of this characteristic is that I was never allowed to, or required to compromise on who I was and what I firmly believed in.

I was constantly reminded to be true to myself but also encouraged to compromise when the compromise was merely situational.

I was constantly reminded to be true to myself but also encouraged to compromise when the compromise was merely situational. A minor example – I never gave into drinking or asked anyone else to give it up because of me, but I have on multiple occasions, eaten horribly cooked  Indian food at an  American restaurant because my best friend loves Indian food.

Another aspect to compromise is that if I were to compromise, I mustn’t regret or resent it.

Another aspect to compromise is that if I were to compromise, I mustn’t regret or resent it. Compromise sounds like such a bad, almost damaging word but in reality it should be a choice. A choice to compromise. So though the compromise might benefit two or three of us, I must never resent anyone else for my choice to compromise.  There are unfortunately many men and women whose lives are not a product of their decisions and compromises may be made on their behalf. I do not in any way intend to belittle individuals in those situations, but my point  is steered a very different direction.

So, now think about it – all relationships require compromises. Parent-child, siblings, partners, all of them at some point needed one of you to change plans, cancel plans, quarrel, argue or whatever and yet those relationships that survive are the ones where those compromises aren’t even that important. In these relationships when you think back on all your times with you parent, sibling, partner, all you think of is that silly prank, or that disastrous dish or that weird travel destination. Rarely, if ever, a ‘compromise’ is brought up and resented. Now onto unconditional love. No individual comes tailor-made to suit one’s needs. They all have something annoying, aggravating, irritating qualities about them. That doesn’t stop one from loving them, we simply work around those issues and continue to love them despite the issues.

To stop loving someone, to grow apart, to grow distant is not a lack of unconditional love, it’s a side effect, if you will,  of being human.

To love someone without conditioning that love to cause and effect, is to love some unconditionally. To stop loving someone, to grow apart, to grow distant is not a lack of unconditional love, it’s a side effect, if you will,  of being human.

What do you think?  Do you think there is such a thing as unconditional love or not? Let me know in the comments.

Please do visit my website, I’d really appreciate it. I put up a new post every Wednesday. Thanks

Love,

sr

New Website and A BIG thank you to ALL OF YOU!

New Website and A BIG thank you to ALL OF YOU!

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Hey everybody!
I’m really excited to tell you that I’m finally *finally* getting my very own website! It’s been a work in progress and I’ve been (and still am) unsure of starting my own website with the payments and everything. But, I’m taking a leap of faith, rejecting all self-doubt, writing tons of good stuff (for all of you and all the other people who will follow me in my website journey) and finally releasing my website ‘sanahrizvi.com‘ on July 1st, 2015!
Along with my website, I am going to dive in and jumpstart my jewelry business and I’ve decided to name it ‘Sanah’. Yes, very imaginative I know. But I figured what better name than one that means ‘something that brings joy and enlightenment’? I’m working out the nitty-gritty details of it and how to get people to know about my jewelry. So if you have any tips – I’m all ears! I’m going to be focusing on office wear for women. As an intern at a shoe company, I realized that women don’t have much to choose from when it comes to office wear and whatever little is available is so tacky!  I’ve decided to change that and  I will be updating my Etsy page soon, so please do follow it and let me know of any and all feedback you may have.

I am working hard to make my website and jewelry really pick up but before I say anything else I do want to answer one question that a lot of people have been asking me – What *exactly* is the website about?

Well, it’s about happiness in  life. It’s about being happy, getting happy, doing what makes you happy and just loving being happy. And what gives me the authority to talk on happiness? Well, I have always been a happy person despite what life had thrown at me. I’ve struggled with Anxiety, stress, ADHD, and of course, sadness, but I’ve never let that define me or my happiness. What it means to be happy, how to define your happiness, what we can do as a community or an individual for our happiness is definitely one of the most important aspects of life! And so, when way too many people came to me and wanted to talk to me in the creepy corner of a room to ask me my secret to happiness, I figured, maybe people would like to know what I have to say. Maybe, people would like to be happier and maybe, for once, they’d like to hear it from someone who is actually a happy, ordinary person they can meet whenever they want!

My website is definitely going to be a happy, fun, real place and I intend to keep it that way. I haven’t figured out more than that. I know people tell you to have a ‘niche’ but happiness is so vast, how can I pick just one thing?! I can’t and honestly, on some level I don’t want to. Happiness is a journey and I intend to show you and tell you all of it. No secrets.

I would really love lots of support from all of you and the best way of doing that is by following me on social media so that you can get the best of everything as soon as possible and share with others who may benefit from it!

All my links for *this* website are on the right.

Everything for my new website, which by the way, will be released on July 1st are right here –

Facebook

Twitter

Tumblr

Instagram

Etsy

Google+

Please do follow me and if you have any tips or any questions about happiness or anything, please let me know in the comments below!

Thanks everyone!

P.s – Should I get a fancy signature?

Things I Miss about Home (Part One)

Things I Miss about Home (Part One)

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Being a student in the US is an experience I wouldn’t trade for the world. New York is amazing. The blankets of snow covering a town are mesmerizing. Autumn in Amherst is absolutely breathtaking. No complaints. However, home is home and there are SO  many things I miss about home.

1. The Sabzi Mandis -Here it’s Trader Joes, Whole Foods or  the closest thing to a mandi is Farmer’s Market, that too, everyone is so quite it seems non-existent.

2. Bollywood Movie Posters – I get to see Brad Pitt a lot, but I miss Shah Rukh Khan (even after Ra.One)

3. Cows on the Streets – I know, I know, it’s weird but hey, home is home, okay. Where else in the world will the entire traffic stop to let a cow pass? Or better yet, where else in the world will cows be just chilling in the middle of the road?

4. The Neighborhood Aunty –  Well, this needs no explanation. As nosey as this aunty is, I still miss not having to hide from her.

5. Ghar Ka Khana a.k.a Home cooked food – Over here I’m stuck with my own cooking. We all know how ‘well’ that goes.

6. Actual Kadak Chai – Here Chai is called CHAI TEA LATTE!  Basically ‘chai with chai please.’

7. Cold Coffe – Here there is no such thing as “cold coffee”. It’s Iced coffee, basically coffee poured over ice or an Iced latte, which could technically be a bad equivalent of Cold Coffe but it’s no way near a good glass of cold coffee

8. Auto-Rickshaws – We have taxis and ubers. But no city is seen with such rawness and intensity in a taxi as it is in a rickshaw, especially the ones in which every turn is a near death experience.

9. Random Baraat on the Street – Well, nothing beats an Indian shaadi. Ever.

What NOT to Say to People Suffering from Depression and What to Say Instead

What NOT to Say to People Suffering from Depression and What to Say Instead

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Depression can tear your soul apart, leave you in the middle of the street lost and aimless. It’s an ocean that is constantly engulfing you, where there is no light at the end of the tunnel. Depression takes a terrible toll on one’s self esteem and self worth and no one “does it to themselves”. It’s a mental illness and it’s one we don’t talk about enough.

Here are a few things you do not say to someone suffering from depression and what to say instead.

What not to say: 

1. You’re always so sad

2. Ugh, stop whining

3. You’re such a wuss

4. Oh snap out of it

5. Stop doing it to yourself

6.There are people who are worse

7. You’re overthinking it

8. You’re too sensitive

9. Life isn’t fair you know

10. You look happy

11. How can *you* be depressed?

12.You’re doing it for the attention

13.  It’s your own fault

14. Be happy for others

15. You’re not trying to be happy

16. Try not to be so depressed

What to say instead:

1. You’re not alone

2. You’re important to me

3. Can I do something for you?

4. Would you like to talk to me?

5. You do not deserve this

6. When this is over, I’ll still be there

7. I’m not going to abandon you

8. If it’s someone you love, “I love you”

9. We’ll get through this together

10. Would you like to go anywhere?

11.  Somethines saying nothing is best. Just be there for them.

P.C – nasrul ekram

Moments – The Boy in the Classroom

Moments – The Boy in the Classroom

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He sat beside her. The classroom was scattered and slowly filling up. He was blonde, barely looked up. He was doodling in his notebook.  She looked over at his notebook often. With every gaze she saw a new line, another line. She smiled. She wanted to say something.  Anything.
A minute later class would start.  He was doodling, something she was terrible at. He drew lines. Triangles.  She just watched, stealthily. Didn’t know what he’d be like. She didn’t want to be rude. Her ex’s best friend walked in. Suddenly she felt her tearing up.
He has broken up. She hadn’t expected it. It has been two days since the breakup. Now the best friend sat right opposite her. Waved a sheepish ‘Hi’ to which she smiled her best smile and waves back.  Hoping the report is good.
She begins to tear up again, when she sees another line. The boy looks up, for just an instant and smiles. He’s cute. She smiles.  All she can think of is her ex – what would he think? Should she talk to this guy? Would it be wrong?  She looked up to see the best friend, he paid no attention to her at all.
She was relieved and upset.  Relieved he didn’t care and upset that he didn’t care. She shrugged her shoulders and sat up straight. The boy beside her looked at her sideways. She got conscious of herself. She wanted to talk to him, but the lecture would begin any moment. If he looked up, maybe she’d talk. But he didn’t look up. When he did, he looked straight at the board. Other times he just peered into his notebook. Scratching over the lines he just made, slowly filling up the top margin of his college ruled notebook. She thought of things to say. To be friendly but cool. Approachable and bold.  To subtly tell her ex that she was strong. She wasn’t crying and she wasn’t hurt. She knew that was a lie, but a lie worth telling.
Her heart quivered a little. Her body shivered a little. Her thoughts were jumbled and conflicted. Guilty and excited at once! To make a new friend, to leave anther past behind., o start over, to create something new, to forge a relationship, to make a friend.
Was she ready? What would she say?
That’s pretty.
No.
Hi!
 No.
Sup?
No.
“What frequency are we do we use?” He was leaning in. His thin lips slightly parted, his curly hair, jumbled. His long fingers holding the clicking device we used in class.
“It’s AA” She smiled and replied.
“Cool, Thanks.” He smiled. She smiled.
The lecture began.
What Joy to be Free

What Joy to be Free

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“Oh! Look my darling,

I’ve set us free.

You and me, in this wind and free

Singing and dancin’ just as we feel,

oh look, oh look

at the pretty skies,

oh look at them, those wonderful lies,

How they come to a sudden halt,

Darlin’ oh darling,

I’ve set us free,

What a joy, no, blessing, no – joy

it must be to be in love,

and finally free”

Within The Night

Within The Night

Within the night

Between the sparking, glittering stars,

She arose, again in a slight smile

Of every fear, of darkened smiles of love,

She gazed into, and upon,

The skies and the moon and the sun to be.

She sat within a distance so safe, so secure

Her hair mingled with the windless air,

Her skin rippled with her touch

And the ever lasting frowns that lined her eyes

Burnt further into her smile

Within the night

Between the sparkling, glittering stars,

She arose,  she smiled, she loved.

Mom Happy Mother’s day!

Mom Happy Mother’s day!

Mom – You are awesome. I love you so much and what we have is so real. We quarrel, we argue, we gossip but most of all, you always have my back. From terrible grades, to silly boys, to mid night snacks, to ADHD, you’ve never given up on me, instead you encourage me. Every step of the way you make me a better person and give me space to grow. I don’t know what I’d do without you and thank fully, even though I am SUCH A HANDFUL I’ve never needed to find out. I don’t know how you do it. But I am so thankful that you do.

Your spirit, your zest for life, your encouragement, your perspective on life, you focus and of course your absolutely amazing unique personality mesmerize me even today. You are such an inspiration to me. I strive everyday to be a little like you. A little kinder, more patience, more forgiving, more understanding, happier, more successful, just a little more like you.

For every day that you call and bug me about eating well and for every time you know when I’m upset, I am so, so grateful to you. For the past few years Mother’s Day has been without you physically present, but every single day, I miss you and I know you’re there for me.

Be it rain, hail or sunshine, you never give up on me. I admire you. I cherish you and I thank the lord every single day that I have you. I love you and I never want to know life without you. Happy Mother’s Day.

Earrings with SHORTS?!

Earrings with SHORTS?!

Hey everybody!

It’s been a while since I did a #ootd post. Now for a while, a lot of you have asked me about wearing earring with jeans and shorts. While i did reply to most of you personally, I figured I’ll make a post so that everyone knows.

Now, fashion is different for everyone. I wear what makes me feel good. It may not make you feel as good. If so, feel free to find other bloggers who resonate your style better. No one should police your body or tell you what to wear or what not to wear and I don’t intend to do that either. So this blog post is solely for those whose style is a little like mine!

Here is what I wore (The gallery of pictures is just below the individual pictures!)

The look on me! (and there's a bus behind!)
The look on me! (and there’s a bus behind!)
The owl t-shirt
The owl t-shirt
My shoes
My shoes

And finally the earrings I wore!

The earrings I wore
The earrings I wore

Other earrings you can wear

Earring type 1- Danglers
Earring type 1- Danglers
Earring 3- Danglers + Jhumkas
Earring 3- Danglers + Jhumkas

Check out the gallery for more photos!