Archive for April, 2016

Nespresso

April 9, 2016  |  Odds and Ends  |  No Comments

My mornings are usually jumpstarted thanks to my Nespresso machine and a few of my friends asked me questions about it so I thought I’d go a quick overview as it tends to get confusing when you see all the machines on display.

Nespresso has machines which are more than 100 KD, but in my opinion I’d rather go with the cheaper options. I really don’t need all the bells and whistles.

Most importantly you should know that these models have the exact same specs when it comes to:

  • Automatic Power off (9 Minutes)
  • High Pressure Pump (19 Pressure Bar)
  • Water tank capacity (0.7)
  • Used capsules container capacity (9-11)

All the machines work the same way – You insert a Nespresso capsule, hit a button and out comes your coffee. However, there are a few differences between the machines you should know about.

InissiaThe Inissia @ 45KD is the basic machine – It has two programmable buttons for espresso and lungo and that’s about it. It does not have an on/off button, so you plug it in – select your coffee and it starts up.

Pixie-SSThe Pixie @ 70 KD is almost the same as the Inissia with the exception of a stainless steel body and a warning light indicator when the water level is low. You can also get the Pixie Clip for the same price, the only difference is that it comes with side panels that can be changed. Each panel is either 8 KD or 20 KD depending on the style.

UThe U @60KD has a slightly bigger water tank and the tank can be positioned left, right or behind the machine giving you a bit of more space on your counter top. It also has three different buttons so you can choose between a ristrreto, espresso or a lungo. Other models of the U are:

UMAT @ 60 KD  : which is the same as the U except with a matt finish

UMILK @ 90 KD: which comes with an integrated Aeroccino – So you have only one power outlet being used.

aeroThe Aeroccino @ 20 KD is a milk frother for your lattes and cappuccinos.

Friday

April 8, 2016  |  Relationships  |  No Comments

happy-friday

Learn to apologize

April 7, 2016  |  Relationships  |  No Comments

Apology

“Hey, I said sorry already, can we drop this?” “I said I’m sorry” “Yes, you are right – my bad sorry. Feel better now?”

No and No and in case you missed it – NO! – This is not an apology and no, just because you said it the issue is not resolved and no I feel worst now because you think this is all that was required to set everything straight.

Who gave you the bright idea that saying these two simple words would have the power to forgive and rectify your mistakes? At what point did it seem to be a good idea to say anything and everything and then reverse it all by saying I’m sorry? You might think that saying I’m sorry can fix things but in reality these words will not heal the wounds caused nor will it mend a relationship.

Don’t want to be considered a tool again, perhaps you ought to learn to give a proper apology in three steps:

Own up to your behavior – You messed up, admit it. The person you wronged is hurt and you need to restore trust.

Choose your words – It’s not I apologize, it’s I’m sorry – Sorry shows more depth and expresses remorse while apologize points to your regrets for your action. There is a difference, understand it. Further there are no if’s and but’s in an apology. Those are excuses and you cannot bring an excuse into an apology

Listen – You apologized, now keep quite. Listen to the other person share back how they feel. Resist the urge to keep apologizing or offering explanations. Let the other person vent and you might understand the depth of the hurt you have caused.

That catchphrase “Love means you never have to say you’re sorry” has got it all wrong. It is and should be “Love means being quick to say sorry”

Sulkers

April 6, 2016  |  Relationships  |  No Comments

Sulkers

If you ever come to the realization that the person you are with sulks it can be the turning point of the relationship. People who sulk are habitual manipulators who do it only to get you to conform to their wishes. Should they realize that it works, welcome to a never ending cycle of watching them sulk to get you to agree to them. Hopefully the following thoughts might help:

Identify if they are the sulking type – typical indications would be:

  • Running and hiding at the first sign of a disagreement
  • Refusing to speak or acknowledge that there is an issue
  • Cold with rejection of any signs of affection
  • A different attitude when another person talks to them

Don’t take it personally – It’s not you – Repeat it to yourself – IT’S NOT YOU. The person sulking is responsible for his/her own immaturity. If you start taking it on yourself, in essence he/she has won and you have been manipulated.

Don’t stand for it – By hanging around and trying to smooth things over, you are playing in to their demands. Instead ignore and get on with your day.

It will change – If they realize that sulking is not working, gradually they will change and learn to grow out of it. If they decide that they cannot let go of trying to manipulate all the time , are you sure you want to be with them in the first place?

Betrayal

April 5, 2016  |  Relationships  |  No Comments

BetrayalA while ago, I had a falling out with a friend – It was a very small issue which got exacerbated by her going into denial mode –“ Hey if it didn’t happen, then who says I am to blame”. For me I think it was the lack of acknowledgement of the issue that wouldn’t let the ember die. Days passed and from a friend I could trust I now see someone who I rather not be in the vicinity off. Hitting on yesterday’s topic about lies – a small tear in a relationship can at times cause everything to unravel – and for me this rings true.  In one word for me it is a betrayal of our friendship, not because of the falling out or the cold vibes but more from the fact that the unspoken rules of friendship have been broken.

For me there are three basic rules:

Confront me when you have a problem – There is no reason to talk about me /against me to all of our friends. We don’t need mediators – we are supposed to be way better than that.

If I am having a bad day or am upset, take the time to ask me what’s wrong – Ignoring me isn’t going to fix my problem and even though I know you have that party to go to – I am sure you could take a minute or two out reach out. And whatever you do don’t dismiss my issues as being trivial – They are my issues and minimizing them does not make me feel better, it tells me that you think I am over sensitive to everything.

Support my hobbies – Yes I know you are a wonderful in the arts but hey could you try and not keep figuring out how to outshine the rest of us? For a klutz like me, a simple decopatch project is an achievement and yes I need to bask in my own glory once in a while.

Lies

April 4, 2016  |  Relationships  |  No Comments

Lies

Hanging around with a group of friends, I tend to start looking at the group dynamics and like to chart out the various interrelationships at play. Watching it is fascinating as you see a group gets subdivided into smaller subsets as people tend to gravitate towards others who they are comfortable with. How a group handles the divide is the issue – as in I often see in an effort not to hurt feelings, lies are told , which in the short run manage to avoid issues but eventually lead to permanent feelings of discord.

I think that is what is the core of the problem – Lies – small or big ,it just makes it very difficult to connect with someone who lies.

There are two primary reasons why people lie. First is fear /shame. People believe that they will not be accepted if they are honest about who they really are. Hence they lie. Second is because people are selfish. These type of people lie even when it would be so much easier to just tell the truth.

I was recently lied to and felt so unimportant, I felt as if my friend who lied didn’t care about me or trust me enough to tell me the truth. This in turn made me question myself and I felt that I must have done something to make her want to lie. Now from my end I feel as I cannot trust her anymore. I want to forgive and move on but this constant question hangs over me  – if she lied for this silly thing, what else could she have lied about?

So in case you ever do this to someone please remember there is a way out in three easy steps:

Confess: Tell the truth and let it all out – Don’t half bake it, don’t say “but remember when you also said this or that”, or try to give a reasoning behind the lie –  just be honest – say what you did. The only thing you are actually dreading is feeling ashamed with yourself. Accept it and move on, friends are usually more forgiving that you think.

Accept the consequences: Yep it’s going to be difficult and awkward but hey you put yourself in this position. If the person who you lied to is not willing to accept your apology perhaps it’s time to move on. Friends, real friends might balk initially but will eventually come around.

Stop lying: This would be a no brainer, perhaps not everyone you know will like you but aren’t relationships made from the deep connections we make by telling the truth?

Mr.Ego

April 3, 2016  |  Relationships  |  No Comments

EgoI had the unique opportunity to watch a relationship burn out with access to both sides of the relationship. I tried my best to get my friends issues sorted out, but there would be so many conversations that would run in circles, that in the end – I decided to sit on the sidelines and observe as I felt that I had nothing to offer.

From his end – I saw that he wanted to fix things, but his ego tripped him up – he termed it as self-respect but I saw it as his ego and we bantered back and forth until finally I too gave up.

But it got me thinking about self-respect, ego and how you can identify Mr.Ego if you come across him.

So defining it, Self-Respect is concerned with how we value ourselves according to our own standard of worthiness, it deals with how we value our own integrity and to have the ability to be ashamed if we fail to live up to our own opinion of what one should do and how one should be.

Ego is concerned with how we perceive others according to our own standard of worthiness, it deals with how we value others if they fail to live up to our own opinion of what one should do and how one should be.

And if you think you have a Mr. Ego in your life, see how many of these characteristics he shows:

Talks a lot about himself – Mr. Ego needs to hear himself talk about how his life is doing and how well he is coping with his daily struggles at work, with his friends etc . If any topic you talk about takes a turn about himself – then that’s a sign that you have a Mr. Ego in your life.

Knows better – Mr. Ego knows about everything and everyone – He cannot be wrong, and if he is, then he did not have all the facts initially to make a proper judgement in the first place and that’s all your fault too.

Let’s Compare – Mr. Ego can only be satiated when he can constantly compare himself to others and feel superior. Even worst, he tends to compete with you- the so called love of his life because he needs to constantly feel better about himself.

So many faults – Mr Ego is the first one to point your faults and make sure to tell you when you are wrong- Criticism is his forte – constructive criticism not so much. If he is the first to  point out why your clothes don’t look good but never a compliment when you are dressed well…. that’s Mr.Ego.

Make me feel better – Mr. Ego needs you to make himself feel better. Your love and affection feeds his self-value. Even if he knows the relationship is doomed, he will continue as he needs his daily boost of self-worth.

Jealous much? – Mr Ego is an immaculate time keeper -He needs to know where you are and who are you talking to – Out for a party – he needs to know what time you will get back – That old flame you still are friends with? – Nope those things don’t happen in Mr. Ego’s world.

ME first – Mr. Ego needs to protect himself before anyone else. Try to have a discussion and see Mr. Ego disappear faster than you can say “we need to talk”. He will justify his actions by blaming you to be too sensitive, and try to make you feel responsible for him running away.

We all have an ego but we need to learn to keep it in check, otherwise it will destroy your relationship with anger, jealousy and resentment. Do yourself a favor and let Mr. Ego walk away, seek a person who loves himself first – if a man cannot love himself – he will never truly be able to love you.

Introspection 2/2

April 2, 2016  |  Relationships  |  No Comments

Knowing_Yourself

Talking is so much easier that doing, I got myself into a tizzy with yesterday’s post about introspection and tried my best to start the process – Life as usual got in the way and so I took a timeout , thought very carefully about how I should start and today I managed to get it done.What I learned:

Me Time – You need time to think and not be interrupted – for me I find it’s either taking a walk in the morning or sitting on my sofa sipping my espresso. The essential element is that you cannot be interrupted. To make it a habit I am going to do it the same time every day.
Ask Yourself Questions – Got into “me time” mode now it’s time to ask yourself questions that might be challenging to answer. Some of these questions are open ended and I was quite surprised at my own answers.
For starters, I asked myself:
• What do I love about myself the most?
• What am I passionate about?
• What makes me angry?
• If I had all the money in the world how would I spend my time?
Well these were enough to set me on my journey – I think each of us should create our own set of questions to reflect what is most important to them – Easy method – ask yourself – What do I want to know more about myself.
No Judgement – Yes your answers have the potential to shock or amuse you. The answers are yours and only yours – They are a part of you and you have to remember not to judge yourself based on them. It will take time for you to get used to it, but remember to answer truthfully to make this experience worthwhile.
Write it down – I keep my answers on a journal – I would love to go back, look at them and see how my thoughts have changed. For me, it took a few hours for me to change /add to my answers, leaving me to reflect on how we assume that we are what we are isn’t really true at all.
Repeat – Once I finished with my initial set of question, I had a look at them in the evening and added a few more points and removed some more after some reflection. Next time around I am a few more questions I want to think about and I hope that this routine will help me gain the self-knowledge I want.

Introspection 1/2

April 1, 2016  |  Relationships  |  No Comments

Thinking Man

Having been through a couple of arguments recently, I took the time to sit and try to figure out what were the reasons why I was being put in such situations. After a considerable amount of time spent blaming everyone else – I looked out of the window and saw my reflection staring back at me – and I said you too! – It’s your fault too – and that’s when it hit me – Do we really ever wonder what part we have played in an argument ? – In a misunderstanding ? – When we reach a point of time where there is a communication breakdown do we ever sit and think how we had anything to contribute to it?

It is way too easy to say that the issue is with the “other party” and not us, our first step is always “I did nothing wrong , it’s you” when thinking about the interaction.  Human tendency is to look outside ourselves for reasons – looking inward is awkward at best – hence the reason of introspection

Introspection is defined as the observation of one’s own thoughts and feelings. We do not take the time to consider how we got the way we are right now – We are and that’s all there is to it, but in reality there have been a myriad of factors that have influenced us in one way or the other – culture, education,family,social interactions and others . All of these and more have made us who we are and how we react to others.