10 Random Blog Topics Answered

If you are a content creator or have ever done a little bit of content writing, you’ll know how tough it is to find the right topic to talk about. So I was looking at Pinterest for some blog ideas, and trust me I saw so many but then I realized these are too small to write a blog about. I finally decided to club 10 blog topics in one, so let’s go!

i) Meet my best friend – I have always wanted to not specify someone’s name particularly in the blog. (God knows why, but I find it better this way.) Thus without mentioning her name, let me tell you about my best friend. We have been friends since grade 1. We went to the same school and lived in the same apartment. She is not only my topic today, but also has been my topic when I had to write a paragraph on my best friend for English class in grade 3 (Oh my god, touch-wood!) Teachers in the school called our names together and always tried to ensure we weren’t bench partners because we chitchatted all the time.

I guess it’s been 16-17 years of friendship and it’s not like school days right now, we are in touch but have been busy in our own lives. She has always been my go-to person always whenever I have needed a friend. And that’s what friends are for. Aren’t they?

ii) Ten years from now – Ten years from now I’ll be 33, hopefully living my dream life. What’s my dream life? If asked to choose between a fancy and normal life, I don’t know why but I’ll choose the normal one. A dream life where there is no shortage of necessities and space for luxuries. I hope in 10 years I would be having an awesome job helping me make awesome money, be happily married and I guess have a house which we’ll make our home. (Oh my god Sonali, how cheesy are you!)

iii) My favourite holiday – Till now it has been a family vacation to Udaipur, Rajasthan in 2016. (Have written a blog on it too. Link : https://sonalishares.com/2020/08/02/travel-101-my-trip-to-udaipur/) It’s been my favourite because it was a good city to explore and also, as mentioned in my Udaipur blog too, it was that family vacation in which my parents were young enough to accompany us everywhere without getting much tired and I was old enough to understand and remember the beauty of all places we visited.

iv) My biggest pet peeve – Firstly pet peeve means something that a particular person finds especially annoying. (Oh you knew already? I didn’t so I thought I’ll let you know too!) My biggest pet peeve is the sound that anyone makes when they drink anything, the sound of that liquid going down their throat. I know it’s not something which someone does intentionally, everybody does that, but I can’t bear it, just can’t. Somebody please tell me I am not alone and you share this pet peeve with me, it’ll make me feel slightly normal.

v) My biggest fears – I don’t know if you have it too or not, but I fear death, not only mine but also of my loved ones too. I know death is inevitable, it happens to everybody. Spending one entire lifetime with yourself, your body, your soul, feeding it, taking care of it, making connections, living around loved ones, and then one day, it’s all gone, nothing matters anymore. And what is even more scary is neither do you know what happens next nor do you get to know what happened to those people you cared about all the time, or do you?

vi) Social media phenomenon – I have seen social media changing from a good to a bad platform. It started as being a source of connectivity to people across the globe, a means of spreading information and putting light on things which were unnoticed and there was a time when we used to log in to social media for some hours of the day to see what the world is up to.

Unfortunately, we all live here now, it’s like we leave social media and go to sleep for sometime and then come back to it again, what we see on the internet is very rarely true and we have started living in a fake world. Not accusing anybody, I am a part of it too, can’t help it. But the most I do to provide relief to my brain is to constantly remind myself that social media is just a source of entertainment for me and then I am happy.

vii) My favourite book – To not lie, I do not read a lot. But out of the books I have read till date, the thriller Tell me your dreams by Sidney Sheldon has been the best read. It’s a thick book with small font and an amateur like me thought I wouldn’t be able to read it. But it’s one of those books you just can’t keep down. It has an amazing ending and I highly highly suggest it if you are looking for something to read. (which you should, reading books is an excellent habit, I regret not doing it when I was a kid)

viii) Time management – I am not the right person for this topic. I myself do all my work just on the deadlines or when someone is constantly standing on my head. I know how to do it, but I need the constant push or I won’t do it. It’s sad, I know, somebody out there to help me? Please let me know.

ix) If I could eat one last meal – I would be having a tough time selecting between the Indian cuisines Rajma- Chawal and Dal Makhni-Butter Naan. I can eat them all the time and just cannot give up on them. (I am happy to be fat all my life instead of being slim without them.) Also now I am thinking, how could this have been a topic to write one complete blog about?

x) What I do to recharge – Just like any other human being, I listen to my favourite songs, or watch particular scenes or episodes of my favourite movies or series, have a good meaningful conversation with a friend, eat good food, go for a walk or just sleep. But the literal best thing that helps me recharge is when I clean my room, just properly spend an hour or so and then I am all energized. Room sorted, life sorted.

Yep, that’s all. Just 10 honestly and candidly answered blog topics and ideas in 1 blog. Would love to do it again if it gets some positive feedback. Let me know in comments section your views and other blog topics that I can write about.

All about The Alchemist

Who hasn’t heard about this bestseller book? The Alchemist, written by Brazilian author Paulo Coelho, is a book originally published in 1988 and translated in English and published again in 1993. It’s a book that urges its readers to follow their dreams. A book which says to never give up on your dreams, to follow what the heart says and to trust your instincts.

Whenever I have asked somebody to suggest me a book to read, The Alchemist is one of the most common answers I have received. I have heard people say that the book is extremely motivational, is an eye-opener and a must read. And I agree to that to some extent, but not completely! Had I out of nowhere come across the book on my own and given it a read, I too would have said that I loved it. But the reviews that I always received were so good that my expectations from it were already very high. Is the book worth a read? Let me help you decide that.

Paulo Coelho convinces the readers to be aware of their personal calling, the path that God chose for you here on Earth. He goes on to say that even if you become aware of your dream, you face four obstacles. The first is that you are always told that what you want is impossible to achieve. The second is love. Coelho says that we consider love to stop us from achieving our personal calling or our dream. However, the truth is, that if the love is true and genuine, it pushes you towards achieving it instead of holding you back.

The third obstacle is the fear of defeats you will meet on the path. To overcome this obstacle, he tells that the secret of life is to fall seven times but still get up the eighth time. The final obstacle comes when you are just about to achieve your dream but miss the bullseye because you do not consider yourself worthy enough. However if you realize that it isn’t true, you successfully overcome it and thus achieve your dream.

Most of the book is written in an easy-breezy language (However it gets a little monotonous and complex to read in the end.) It’s the story of a boy Santiago, whose parents educated him to become a priest but he wanted to travel and see places and hence decided to become a shepherd. Santiago has his plans clear in his mind. On a round of the place with his sheep the previous year, he had met the merchant’s daughter and in his mind had decided to ask her to marry him this time when he visits the merchant’s shop.

However, a recurrent dream has some other plans for him. He had dreamt of a child playing with his sheep, then holding his hands and spinning him to an unknown place. Santiago became curious to know more about the recurrent dream. He gets his dream decoded by a palm reader who tells him that a treasure is waiting for him in the Pyramids of Egypt.

Does Santiago follow his dream or continue his journey to meet the merchant’s daughter is the next question which pops in the head.He gets convinced by a king to follow his dreams and begins his journey to find the treasure. What happens next is exactly what the book is all about. He undertakes the journey which is full of learnings and life lessons. And the book is full of these lessons and quotes to live by. (Sharing a few of my favourites but trust me there are so many!)

On his journey, he meets a person at the bar who convinces him to take him to the Pyramids but gets robbed instead, a crystal merchant shop owner who helps him make enough money for him to go back to his shepherd life, an Englishman who is in search of the Alchemist, the Caravan driver whom he meets in the desert and imparts him with many life lessons, the Alchemist who guides him to his treasure and the love of his life, Fatima. Does he finally find his treasure? Let’s leave that for the readers to find out.

Did I love the book? It’s a mix of both yes and no. Yes, because I think the book is way ahead of its time since now in the present can I see the concept of “follow your dreams” being normalized. I think this concept must have been a big thing when the book came out. No, because I think there could have been many more possibilities and also, when a strong concept is explained, one must try to explain it in an even more easier manner so that it’s easily understood by all.

The word “Maktub” is the charm of the book and the ending doesn’t disappoint you. The book conveys what it wants to and has been written beautifully. Have you read this bestseller book yet? Do let me know your views on it in the comments section. Keep reading and sharing my blogs, it keeps me going!

Link to buy the book on Amazon : https://amzn.to/33UP7Yt

Attitude of Gratitude

Sometime in 2019 I borrowed a book from my friend (just because it’s cover looked very intriguing) The Magic by Rhonda Byrne. It started on the note that this one practice will change your life and make you fulfill your dreams. It went on to say that this one thing is the magic which is required to transform your life to the best. The more you do this practice, the magic multiplies and you reach closer to your goal but the less you do it, the magic vanishes.

It was the practice of gratitude. What is gratitude? It is the quality of being thankful. And like all other people in the world, I too was like, kisi ko thank you bolne se kisi ki life mein itna bada change kaise aa sakta hai? (How can saying thank you to people lead to such a big change in somebody’s life?) So even more curiously I started reading the book. The book had 28 practices which had to be done for 28 days so that one imbibes the practice of gratitude in their lives and this gratitude would be the magic which would do wonders.

Did I complete the book and do all the practices? No. I am a lazy and inconsistent person. But I did 3-4 practices and they made me realize and convey what the book was talking about. The first practice in the book was to count your blessings. All I had to do was, take a notebook and write down 10 things I was grateful for. It could have been anything, from a person in my life to something very basic like the clean air or the sun which provide all of us the actual living conditions. Literally anything I consider myself to be blessed for had to be written. 10 things everyday, for 28 days.

I did it for sometime but I wasn’t consistent. But I could feel the magic of gratitude working and let me tell you how, by sharing one instance I have a blurry memory of. One day while counting my blessings, one of those I wrote was that I am blessed to be living with my grandparents who care for me and have always tried their best to make my life easy. So I wrote the 10 things for the day and got busy with the daily routine.

But the whole day is not the same. I don’t remember exactly what, but something happened and I got irritated from them. But it was the list of gratitude I prepared in the morning which made me remember how thankful I am for them to be around and that this irritation was something very small in front of that. And that irritation just vanished! Didn’t the magic of gratitude just work?

Thank you aren’t just words to say. It is a feeling of realizing how blessed you are that somebody is helping you and making your life easy. It is a feeling of you making that somebody realize that you are thankful you have them in your life. Doesn’t this feeling have so much positive energy in it?

I saw this youtube video of Simerjeet Singh reciting a beautiful poem Charde Suraj by Baba Bulleh Shah which talks about being grateful and every time I listen this poem, it fuels me up with positivity.

Bulleh Shah in the poem very easily conveys he has seen time changing everybody’s circumstances, that he has seen the unforeseen happen by the blessings of god. He says that those who don’t value god and are ungrateful are always seen empty handed. He ends up saying that he might not have everything in the world, however he is still in better conditions than many people, and for that he is very grateful to god.

One day at college I overheard my friends talking. One of those was saying that she has read books like The Secret and Good Vibes, Good Life and that they are very beautifully written, that everyone must read them. To this the other friend replied that just talking and thinking about things doesn’t make them happen, you need to do the effort that it takes. I agree with what he said, but I would like to add, it takes strength to make that effort and such books fill you with the strength that it takes to reach somewhere. Practice the Attitude of Gratitude and see your life changing for the best.

Life is all about the next step

Social media is a big platform in today’s world. We see so many influencers and content creators and are always amazed by how beautiful their profiles are and automatically interpret that their lives would be equally amazing. I have always wanted to get a close picture of their journey and experiences.

When I thought of sharing a social media influencer’s story, my school friend Mansii Arora popped to my mind. Initially I was too hesitant to ask her to share her story for my blog as we hadn’t been much in touch after school and were just social media friends. But thinking the worse that could happen was she saying a blunt no to the idea, I messaged her, told her what I was planning to do but she informed me that she doesn’t do social media influencing much now and is about to launch her own brand, Kocoon, a range of Luxury Ayurvedic Cosmetics. Even more curious as to what made her change her direction, I insisted I would still love to hear her journey and she happily agreed!

Mansii started by sharing her journey from the scratch. She told that her mind was pretty clear after school that she wanted to go for the Beauty Pageants and would do her graduation side by side. I asked if her parents were supportive about this decision of hers to which she replied that her parents have always been supportive in all her decisions of life and she herself believed that letting kids fly and chase dreams on their own terms is a wonderful aspect.

I asked her how the Beauty pageant journey was to which she said that she lost an enormous amount of weight just after schooling, worked hard on toning her body and groomed herself thoroughly on every aspect to participate as a strong contender. Unfortunately she couldn’t make it. And the next obvious question I asked was how she handled the rejection to which Mansii replied with utmost honesty that it wasn’t very easy to see her dreams fall apart and she was extremely heartbroken. However, she gave a beautiful reply (and I quote) “I have learnt the most important lesson that life will defeat you end number of times but you must not be defeated. Rejections are a part of life and every kid must be taught how to deal with failures, right from a very early age.”

When asked if she could suggest something to people trying for beauty pageants, Mansii suggested that one should be confident but not overconfident. And that it’s wiser to prepare yourself while being affiliated to some pageant school or coaching.

What happened next? Refusing to give up, she decided to go to Mumbai for a Diploma in Fashion Designing and to try her hands at modelling. I asked her how she found the city of dreams to which she replied that her one year in Mumbai was the most challenging year of her life. She had to consistently follow her daily routine, juggled between the two careers and alongside faced unnecessary harsh environment which made her surroundings not very peaceful.

I asked her to share more about her modelling experience. Mansii told that it wasn’t easy. Sometimes you get rejected by the agencies and sometimes you don’t even get a response. Sometimes things don’t work out no matter how hard you try. When asked what advice she would give to people thinking of pursuing modelling, Mansii advised that networking is the most important. That’s only how you can go ahead in a career like modelling, you need to know people and people need to know you. She added that the industry is not easy and “metoo” is not a myth. One needs to keep their dignity high and themselves protected.

After a year full of hardships, she decided to come back and since she was quite passionate about fashion and styling, she started making fashion videos or vlogs. She told she was amazed by the kind of content influencers were making and thought she too could probably contribute and earn a living out of it.

The videos were appreciated and slowly and steadily she knitted a family of about 20-21,000 followers. She worked with a few brands, created fashion and styling videos for them. However there was always a delay in payments, sometimes the payments were not honoured and she was paid less than promised. These instances broke her bubble and made her realize that social media influencers lived a superficial life. She concluded that this could not be a mainstream career and eventually stopped creating content.

Was she a victim of hate and mean comments? Did they affect her? The answer was a big yes and to my surprise, most of them were girls. She said that some of them didn’t like her choice of styling, some didn’t like her face and some men didn’t like her bold choice of clothing. But what she answered next amused me, (and I quote) “It used to affect me for some time but then I would get normal because someone’s hate is a clear sign of how unhappy they are with themselves and their life, it has nothing to do with you.”

Mansii concluded by saying that the road has been quite bumpy and the journey has been challenging but she has learnt a lot over the years, the most important one of those being discipline. She told that her only support system were her parents and her friend Tejas on whom she truly counted upon.

It takes courage and a lot of strength to keep on trying even when things don’t go in your favour. From trying for the beauty pageant to modelling to being a social media influencer and now to finally step onto the path of entrepreneurship, Mansii got success in some and learned a lot from the ones in which she didn’t and that’s why it’s rightly said, life is all about the next step!

Link to Mansii’s instagram account : https://www.instagram.com/mansiiarora/

Soothing & Full of Hope Bollywood Songs

Music is what connects us all. There are so many types of music one can listen to; from the falling in love to the heartbroken and to the motivational songs playlist. I love listening to good lyrics and good tune Hindi, English and Punjabi songs. Spreading some positivity by sharing my 7 favourite soothing and easy-breezy songs.

i) Jeete Hain Chal – Neerja

Sung by Kavita Seth, composed by Vishal Khurrana and written by Prasoon Joshi, Jeete hain Chal is one of my favourites. It starts with the Maha Mrityunjaya mantra and the lyrics of the song are so beautiful that they fuel you up on the days you feel low and fill you with all the positive energy.

Some of the lines I love from the song are :

Marna kyun, jee lena
Boondon ko pee lena
Tere hi sapno ki baarish hai

Paaniyon ko raste tu banane de,
Roshni ke peeche khud ko jaane de

Kehta yeh pal
Khud se nikal
Jeete hain chal

ii) Manja – Kai Po Che

Sung and composed by Amit Trivedi and written by Swanand Kirkire, the song became one of my favourites when I watched the movie recently. The lyrics of the song are so beautiful and on point that they give you so much strength and hope in life.

Lines I loved from the song are :

Soyi takdirein jaga denge
Kal ka ambar bhi jhuka denge
Ho ho hai jazba, ha ha hai jazba
Suljha lenge uljhe rishton ka manja

iii) Allah Ke Bande – Waisa Bhi Hota Hai II

Sung by Kailash Kher, composed by Vishal-Shekhar and written by Vishal Dadlani, isn’t this one everybody’s go to song when they are looking for something soothing and hopeful?

My favourite lyrics from the song are :

Girta hua woh aasma se
Aa kar gira zaameen par
Khwabon mein phir bhi
Baadal hi the woh kehta raha magar
Ke allah ke bande hasde
Allah ke bande

iv) Kinare – Queen

Sung by Mohan Kanan, composed by Amit Trivedi and written by Anvita Dutt Guptan it is one beautiful but underrated song we missed out in the blockbuster movie Queen when all our focus went on the songs London Thumakda and O Gujariya. I love the guitar tune in the song and insist you to listen this one.

Lyrics I like the most from this song are :

Auron se kya
Khud hi se, poonch lenge raahein
Yahin kahin, maujon mein hi
Dhoond lenge hum

Boondon se hi, toh hain wahin
Baandh lenge leherein
Paeron tale jo bhi mile
Baandh lenge hum.. Kinare

v) Kun Faya Kun – Rockstar

Sung by A.R Rehman, Javed Ali and Mohit Chauhan, composed by A.R Rehman and written by Irshaad Kamil, this one is my go to song whenever I feel everything is falling apart. Kun Faya Kun means “be, and it is.” It actually is a Quran verse and is referred 5 times in Quran. It is referred to symbolise god’s creative power and is about God’s will and absolute control over every reaction. (Googled!)

Although I do not understand much of the song’s lyrics, it’s still very soothing to hear. Lyrics I loved from the song are :

Tu hai mujh mein samaaya kahaan leke mujhe aaya
Main hoon tujh mein samaaya
Tere peechhe chala aaya
Tera hi main ik saaya
Tune mujhko banaya
Main to jag ko naa bhaya
Tune gale se lagaya
Haq tu hi hai khudaya
Sach tu hi hai khudaya

vi) Phir Se Udd Chala – Rockstar

Sung by Mohit Chauhan, composed by A.R Rehman and written by Irshaad Kamil, this one is another gem from the movie rockstar. Some movies are so wonderful that the whole songs album is amazing, Rockstar is one of those. Don’t you agree?

Lyrics I loved from the song are :

Mitti jaise sapne ye kitna bhi palko se jhaado
Phir aa jaate hain
Kitne saare sapne kya kahoon kis tarah se maine
Tode hain chhode… hain kyun
Phir sath chalein mujhe leke ude ye kyun

vii) Iktara – Wake Up Sid

Sung by Kavita Seth, composed by Shankar Ehsaan Loy and written by Javed Akhtar, Iktara is my all time favourite. (So is the movie and so is the song’s male version, Literally love it!)

Lyrics I love from the song are :

Sun rahi hoon sudh budh khoke koi main kahani
Poori kahani hai kya kise hai pata
Main to kisiki hoke yeh bhi na jaani
Ruth hai ye do pal ki ya rehgi sada

Yep, that’s all. These are my 7 most favourite soothing and full of hope songs! Does my playlist overlap with yours? Are any of these your favourites too? Do let me know in the comments some of your favourite soothing songs with amazing lyrics.

Watched the MARVEL series

Whenever it comes to watching something online, I have always preferred movies over shows or series. The reason is simple; the movie is of a way shorter duration and you manage to watch it till the end even if you don’t find it interesting. However, if you lose interest in the middle of a show, you end up nowhere. But the bored-in-the-house phase made me change my theory to finally watching a movie series.

So me and my friend initially thought of watching the Star Wars series. But when we googled, people suggested to watch Marvel instead because it was comparatively recent and had better graphics. Marvel movies in total till now are 23 in number. We started in May beginning and ended it recently. (Yes it took a lot of time but something or the other came midway and it kept us occupied.)

I believe most of you all might have already watched them. But just in case you haven’t, there are 2 ways of watching; either you can watch them according to the date of their release or in the chronological order of how the movies actually make sense because all of them have released now. Both the ways are up on the internet and you can see the list accordingly. We preferred the former one because we wanted to have the cinema experience which we had missed.

Tried my best to find a picture of all of them in one

We started with Iron Man which released in 2008. After the movie, both of us were awestruck, sitting and calculating that we would have been in our 5th or 6th standard when the movie released, but still how technologically advanced the movie was!

What’s so special about Marvel? There are the mid-credits, post-credits scenes and “xyz avenger will return” in the end which makes you wonder what would happen next and how would all this connect. There are the Stan Lee cameos, the completely out-of-the-box thinking of life on other planets, the nine realms and what not. They have this amazing star cast of all the wonderful actors like Robert Downey Jr, Chris Evans, Chris Hemsworth, Paul Rudd, Benedict Cumberbatch, Mark Ruffalo, Scarlett Johansson and so so many more.

Well, What did I personally love about Marvel? I loved the ones in which all the Avengers were together, using their own specific powers to fight the common enemy and save the world. I personally loved the collaboration Avengers : Infinity War more than Avengers : Endgame (Please don’t kill me) as the former one literally keeps you on your toes because you never excepted the Avengers getting defeated by anyone.

Apart from how advanced the technology was and how wonderful the graphics were, I loved how beautifully the characters were portrayed. The savageness and sassiness of Genius-Billionaire-Playboy-Philanthropist Tony Stark, the utmost dedication of once in the army Steve Rogers, the unconditional love and bond between Scott Lang and his daughter Cassie which could make him do anything, the teenage introvert at high school Peter Parker, the tree with just one dialogue in the entire series “I am Groot” which makes you adore him so much, the strong and hardcore values of Thor and T’Challa to protect their kingdoms of Asgard and Wakanda respectively and many many more instances made it an even amazing watch.

We had just completed watching Captain America : The Civil War and Black Panther was the next when the news of Chadwick Boseman’s death came. And I could see everybody writing “Wakanda Forever” on their social media but couldn’t relate that much. Only when I watched the movie myself I realized what a gem of an actor we had lost! Yes, Wakanda Forever!!!

I did my share of looking more about the movies while I was watching the series. (Doesn’t everybody do that?) Saw many YouTube videos of the star cast giving interviews, responding to mean comments on Twitter, read about how much the budget of the movies were and how much they earned out of it, saw their Instagram accounts and how active they were on social media, why they changed Hulk’s role in the middle of the series and did the most mandatory part, looked up for Marvel merchandise on the internet.

Also, me and my friend did this fun thing that once we were done with a movie, we would open it’s Wikipedia page and read the story to each other because we literally didn’t want to miss any slightest of thing in the movie. (If muma is reading this blog, Syllabus padha hai kabhi itni dhyaan se? is what’s in her mind right now.)

When I had put a story on my Instagram account that I have started watching the Marvel series, one of my friends replied that I would literally cry in the end and I laughed when he said that thinking how would a Sci-Fi movie connect that much. But Tony Stark managed to do that and I am still coping up with the loss. I am in the mid of watching Spiderman : Far From Home and all that I have in my mind is Marvel is not Marvel without Tony Stark.

I cannot select one avenger if somebody asks me who my favourite of them all is. Can you? Let me know in the comments section who your favourite avenger is and which movie from the series is your favourite.

Homophones!

Photo by Pixabay on Pexels.com

What are homophones? They are each of two or more words having the same pronunciation but different meanings, origins or spellings. Haven’t you always got confused on how to use “lose-loose” or “effect-affect” correctly in a sentence? Well, these are some examples of homophones.

So here I am, letting you know how to use 10 common incorrectly used homophones by making their meaning and how-to-use-them-in-a-sentence concept clear for once and for all. Grammar Nazis, this one’s for you!

a) Stationary & Stationery

Stationary means fixed, still or not moving. For example, The stars are shining stationary objects in the sky. Stationery means work supplies such as pens, papers and folders. For example, She went to the market to get stationery for her exam.

b) Principal & Principle

Principal is the head or in-charge of certain things in a company. For example, He wasn’t expecting to become principal of the school. Principle is a rule, guideline or a fact. For example, The principle of freedom of speech shouldn’t be taken for granted.

c) Affect & Effect

Affect is a verb which means to make an impact or change something. For example, The disasters affect the life and property of people. Effect is a noun which means the result of a change. For example, The scars on his body were an effect of the car accident he had recently.

Thus, while the word “affect” means to change something, the word “effect” means a result of the change.

d) Loose & Lose

Loose means something which is not tight or not firm. For example, The shirt which he got as a present fitted him loose. Lose means to fail to win or to misplace something or free oneself from someone or something. For example, He always has the habit of losing his keys.

e) Their & There

Their is a word used for specifying possession i.e telling that something belongs to someone. For example, Their car is red in colour. There means “at that place” and is the opposite of here. For example, There are lots of advertisements on the social media these days.

f) Dose & Doze

Dose is related to a measure of quantity. For example, The medicine contains 10 doses in it. Doze means to sleep tightly. For example, Just when the lecture started, he dozed off.

g) Ensure & Insure

Ensure means to guarantee i.e making sure it would happen. For example, He needed to study more to ensure that he got a good grade. Insure means to cover something or someone with an insurance policy i.e if something happens to someone, the compensation would be provided. For example, Insuring your valuables is always a good option.

f) Quite & quiet

Quite means to the greatest extent or degree i.e completely or entirely. For example, She was quite nervous for her exam. Quiet means something which lacks sound or with little or no sound. For example, The city becomes a quiet place at night.

g) Accept & Except

Accept means to agree or receive something offered. For example, He accepted the invitation to come to the party. Except means to exclude something. For example, All the classmates except him came to the reunion.

h) Compliment & Complement

Compliment means to praise or commend or admire something or someone. For example, He gave her a compliment that she looked pretty. Complement means something that completes. For example, Both the bride and groom complement each other.

i) Brake & Break

Brake is a noun which means a device for slowing or stopping a moving vehicle. For example, She used the brakes to stop the car. Break means an interruption of continuity or uniformity. For example, The pandemic brought a break in our normal lives.

j) Peace & Piece

Peace means absence of war. For example, Both the countries agreed to maintain peace among each other. Piece means a part of a whole. For example, He cut the cake into pieces.

Surely there would be many more in the list. However, I found these the most frequent incorrectly used homophones. I myself am no pro and have taken help from the internet to prepare the list and hence there can be some exceptions or errors (I have tried my best to avoid any error though.) How many of the above mentioned did you already know correctly? Let me know in the comments section some other homophones you have in your mind.

Thank You

It has been a little more than 2 months since I started writing blogs and recently the blog reached a milestone of 10,000 views. It’s a big milestone (atleast for me!), something which I hadn’t honestly thought I would accomplish because I know myself; I start things with great enthusiasm that dies within a few days and so does the thing. (Please tell me it’s not just me who is like this!)

But it was different this time. When I shared this idea of blogging with my friend, convincing him with sparkle in my eyes that I want to do it, the one and only thing he said was (and I quote), “Do it but do it religiously. Promise me you’ll write consistently even if there are 1000 views or 0 views a day. You won’t get affected by the numbers and leave the thing.” And only I know how much this conversation has kept me going.

These 10,000 views wouldn’t have even reached a 100 without my Ma-Papa and my friend’s unconditional support (and ofcourse without you all). They have been in this journey with me since day 1. They have heard the posts even before I posted them, given their 200% genuine feedback for it, made their knowns read it by sharing the blog with literally everybody they know and have always suggested me abundantly many topics about which I can write (If you have been writing, you would know how much of a struggle it is to find a topic to write about.)

I have learnt, I have grown. Learnt my share of wisdom by realizing it’s not just the writing part which takes the effort, but the selling-what-you-write part which takes an even bigger effort. To make my blog reach people, I opened my arms to Twitter, Quora and used many other graphics apps to make it catchy. And let me tell you, the knowledge I have gained is immense and I hope it increases always.

I have had my fair share of sad days too. Times where I felt like I was constantly nudging people to read my blogs, where the views weren’t much even after so much effort going in and a little-bit of hate I received from places where I never expected it to come from. There have been days of self-doubt, of the feeling that what I write isn’t good enough, that people out there have so much good, informative and well-written content to offer, that what I write isn’t even worth a read and also the days where I have felt that nobody is into reading in the times of watching videos.

But my support system has been rock solid. I have received messages of people who appreciated my work, suggested me areas to work on and the calmness that penning down what I feel has offered me made me write even after the not so cheerful days.

THANK YOU, thank you so much for reading! In the coming time too, I would try my best to stay consistent, share what I feel genuinely and try to make the best content possible. And as goes the blog’s tag-line, pouring my heart out, sharing my experiences, good vibes only! ✨

And yes, regarding the most frequently asked question to me about the blog, if it has started monetising or not, yes the blog monetises, but let’s just say it’s a drop of water from the ocean as of now!

Certainty in Uncertain Times

Somewhere in February, before the outbreak of Covid-19, we all had a daily routine, some short and long term goals in our mind. I was no different. I had my daily routine of binge watching till late night, procrastinating assignments till the deadline, waking up late in the morning and missing my first lecture in college leading to shortage of attendance.

But you always afford to miss lectures when you know you can cover them up. So finally that stage had come where I diligently needed to attend my classes so that I could get the required attendance and my admit card for the final semester exams.

Thus my short term goal was sorted; to complete my attendance, give the final semester exams and get the post graduation degree. And as far as the long term goal was concerned, I was done with my bank PO interview (if you have been reading my blogs, you can connect) the result of which was expected to come in April. Hence my long term goal too was sorted; I would be done with my post graduation in May, get the bank job and easily slide from the post graduation step to the job step.

But then came the pandemic in March. And I was really happy about it initially. Why? Kyunki attendance poori karne ki zarurat hi nahi ab! (No need to rush to college everyday and complete my attendance!) I loved the time where we were stockpiling our essentials because we didn’t know what could happen next, where there were chefs in the house making momos and dalgona coffee and there were family video calls and online game matches!

But time passed on and the sad news started pouring in. The lockdown kept extending, there was no clear information about the final semester exams, the bank PO job did not materialize, and Ma Papa tested positive for Covid-19. (reading my blogs or not?)

Seems like life doesn’t always go the way you plan it! The monotonous routine of my normal life which didn’t look tempting then looks like a blessing now! During that time, every day was new but still the same. And now the circumstances have changed completely, every day is new, completely unknown and uncertain.

I wake up with the news of someone in my neighborhood or in my family catching the virus, competitive exams getting delayed and no job opportunities to earn and keep yourself occupied with. It’s been 6 months now and once in every 2-3 weeks, I still end up asking myself about what I am doing with my life.

Why am I writing about it? Because maybe nobody is saying it out loud but most of us are going through it. Like I am sharing my story of what I thought and what actually happened, you too might have your own. I realise that it’s not just me, but many out there, who are in this transitory phase. Maybe you had plans of getting somewhere but are stuck now.

But then what’s the way out? The way out is to hold on, stay strong and keep trying. Being a pessimist in an already tough situation would make things even worse. Keep looking for alternatives, for solutions, stay positive and sane. Help yourself and help others. We fall and feel low, see things not working out, but it never means that they never will… and this is the only certain thing in this uncertain time!

Young minds at work #1

I have always been amazed by people around my age thinking of their own business ideas, planning them and working real hard to make them a success. One of those is Ambika Chhabra, a 21 year old, currently pursuing her MBA from Amity Global Business School, Chandigarh and alongside managing her business The Tuck Shop India (TTSI). Sharing her story through my blog so that it inspires people who are thinking of starting their own business (because you never know where motivation comes from!)

Clipping of TTSI featured in Hindustan Times

Ambika starts sharing her journey by telling that like everybody, she expected 2020 to be the year to accomplish her goals and started The Tuck Shop India in February. It’s an online business which sells trendy, quirky and fashionable stationery pan-India at reasonable prices and quality of which I can assure you since I myself am a frequent buyer. She tells that the word “Tuck” in TTSI means to make combos/hampers and hence the online business also makes customized combos.

When asked about how she came up with the idea, she tells that it was a completely random plan which she was inclined to do since she herself was a big fan of the unicorn and fancy stationery. She shares that she expected the products would be bought by young girls of around 5-6 years. However, the response she received slowly and steadily was neither from a particular age group nor from a particular gender.

Curiously I asked her how her family reacted when she told them about it. She told that her parents were the happiest and have been the biggest pillars of support all throughout her journey. And as can be expected from any sibling, her brother mocked her in the beginning but he too has been a support and has helped her in managing the finances. She also talked about her friends who accompanied her in the process and boosted her to keep going.

Did she face any difficulty in the starting? She replied it was a really tough journey where she learnt a lot. Funnily sharing her anecdotes, she said she expected shipping the products would just mean to send them by courier but she gradually learnt all the know-hows of it. She shared her naive experience of how unaware she was of the terms that she couldn’t figure out the “PP” (Purchase Price) commented by one of her customers on an Instagram posts.

I asked her if Covid-19 acted as a setback to her business but she happily told that since the business was online, it wasn’t affected majorly. Infact, spread of Coronavirus gave her a break from her daily college routine and she could actually focus on the business and grow it.

She told that her bestselling products till now have been the unicorn headphones, storage trunks (which I personally love too!), customized necklaces and sippers and many other combos.

Did she have to deal with hate/ rude customer behavior? She answered that most of her customers have been full of warmth and love and there hasn’t been much room for hate, they were mostly just concerned about their orders reaching them in time without much delay. Infact, she shared one happy experience, where she received a cake from one of her customers when TTSI gained 5,000 followers on Instagram. Isn’t that adorable? TTSI customers becoming TTSI family!

I concluded my extensive questioning asking if she has any set targets in her mind for the future to which she replied that she wishes to make a proper website in 2021. Ambika also showed keen interest in displaying her products at various exhibitions, which couldn’t be materialized as of now because of the pandemic.

When asked to share a tip to the budding business enthusiasts, she suggested that they should convert their passion into their business, keep their spirits high and face all the ups and downs but never give up and create on their own instead of copying somebody else’s hard work.

——

The Tuck Shop India currently accepts orders from it’s Instagram page and it’s Whatsapp. Same day delivery available in Tri-city (Chandigarh, Panchkula, Mohali) area.

Have a look at TTSI’s products on it’s Instagram page : https://www.instagram.com/thetuckshopindia/

Have your heart on any particular product? Use coupon “TTSIxSS10” and get a 10% off on all orders above Rs 499. Offer valid till 16th of September,2020. HURRY!!!