Weekend Reflection – Self Improvement

I’m on a serious mission. A lot of people wouldn’t guess that I’m really insecure because of how I interact with others and carry myself, but it’s true. My mission is this: to break free of my insecurities. It has proven to be quite challenging, but I’m going to push myself to avoid negative thoughts. While speaking to a friend, Rahmah Popal, at Jummah this past week, I was reminded that everyone faces these challenges, but it’s those who rid themselves of major insecurities who are really able to be free. The last time I had a deep conversation with her was almost exactly a year ago, and while she was convinced she had a greater purpose in this life, but had no clue which direction she was headed. Now she seems to have it all figured out (Mashallah!), and she really did inspire me to just keep looking forward and hold my head up high.

I’m a roller coaster when it comes to self-image; one day I’ll be completely happy and proud of myself, other days I magnify every flaw of mine and it really brings me down. Over the last couple of years I’ve become less social and I value privacy and exclusion more, which directly relates to how I see myself. And it sucks because I’ve actually felt myself changing year by year… There are reasons for the huge shift in my thoughts and behaviors; it’s because I lost trust in people who let me down and I fell into a state of what some of my close friends diagnose as depression. I’m not really sure if I’ve been depressed, but honestly the way I feel sometimes points directly to the illness. When I put my heart into making things work with others, I expect the same in return and I’m always disappointed… it fuels my lows. I spent every ounce of my love on another person and at this point, I’m all spent out. I’m tired of feeling worthless. I need to aim higher for me. I need to direct all my love inwards, towards my family, and most importantly towards God. Instead of my focal point being someone I love romantically, I’m working on developing a new center: my relationship with God. I’m not really sure how I’m going to do this, it’s much easier said than done. I will, though.

Here’s to aiming higher – because we all deserve a little lot of self-love. Join me in battling insecurities.

PinkGingerale’s Top 5 of the Year


I have the honor of knowing an amazing friend who just so happens to love blogging just as much as I do, and this year for New Years, we decided to guest post. Here’s to good friends, blogging, life, and love; here’s to Anfal Adam of Geek & Chiq!

A Year in Review: Pinkgingerale’s 2013 through the eyes of another 
I have been so fortunate to know Anisah for a really long time now, and I am honored to call her one of my close friends. It was so so hard trying to pick only 5 posts; there are so many amazing ones to choose from. Anisah, the way you write about your experiences, your thoughts, and your journey is truly beautiful and inspirational. You write in a way that allows your reader to connect with you and to see what a truly beautiful, smart and kind soul you are. As a new blogger, its so interesting to me that this form of social media is a way to trace your thoughts and to see how your thought process has developed over time. Anisah, I love that you have a vision. You know what you love, you may not know what you want to do, but that will undoubtedly come with time. 
This post resonated with me 10000%. We are a point in our lives where we are given so many options and it’s hard to narrow down who we are and what we are ‘meant’ to do or be. Yes it may be daunting and a bit annoying to feel lost, but it is also beautiful in a way. Not everyone can say that for a period in their life they just explored: that they had the freedom and the opportunity to see what they are passionate about and move forward with it. That is truly something to be envious of.  I think we should cherish these ‘lost’ moments because such periods of freedom might not come again. As someone who has known you for many years know, I am more than confident that you will do some amazing things, that you will find your niche and conquer it, that you will excel tremendously in whatever you choose to do because you are unique, passionate, loving and a hard working. The world needs to get ready for A-Khan 😉 
Allah Yar7amo (May he rest in peace). From the way you describe him, he seems like someone worth knowing, someone truly inspirational and someone who his Lord wanted back. I don’t even know what to say regarding this post, all I know is that I loved reading it, and it almost brought me to tears. The way you intertwined the book excerpts tied everything together so beautifully and left a lasting impact. It’s such an important thing to remember: it is not how long you live, but its how you live. It’s the impact you leave when you go. How you will be remembered. Young people tend to feel invincible and forget that death does not have an age limit.  Its important for each of us to reflect on how we are living and how we want to improve. I read this thing that said you die multiple times, and the last time you die is when someone utters your name for the last time. Will they be remembering the good or the bad? May Allah bless us all and lead us to the most righteous path.
Anisah, darling, you are truly hilarious! You have such an interesting way of perceiving the world. In all the times I have done self-checkout, I never once noticed these details. Something I love about your writing style is you can take something that can get very heated and very political very quickly, into something comical but with a lasting effect. Yes, I laughed reading this post, but it also made me think about stereotypes and how Muslims are judged in such an effortless way, in a way that doesn’t ostracize anyone. Wonderful! 
This discussion was such a good one! We live in a society that worships youth and forsakes age. We forget that age equals wisdom, experience, and respect. Yes being young is beautiful, but being old is also beautiful. There are some societies that value and honor age in such ways that it deserves, but sadly our society is not one of those. It’s sad to see 40, 50, 60, even 70 year olds (men and women) holding on to their 20s for dear life, trying to avoid moving forward and wanting to be perceived as this young and vibrant thing though some heinous procedures. It is as though they see it as a lifeline to remain part of society, without it are they afraid they will be cast away? The message that you want to pass on to your kids is beautiful and something I think should be engrained in our society, not this need to always be perfect and dolled up. Like you said, forever young is over rated! I don’t know about you, but I’m ready for my 30s.
Can I just say I am OBSESSED with your entire look!! MashAllah gorgeous! Your make up is On Point (but you are a naturally gorgeous girl so you don’t even need it). I love the casual chic look. The blazer and the scarf tie the whole outfit together effortlessly. I have probably said this enough but I LOVE how a turban looks on you, especially this style, it just works girl! I know you don’t like dressing up and all that jazz, but mashAllah you have the grace to rock sweatpants or a ball gown and look beautiful in both! I love the description you have because it really showcases the type of person you are! Anisah, you can walk into a room full of complete strangers and light it up. You have the power to converse with anyone and make them feel as though they have known you for years. mashAllah that is something I love about you!
It was so hard reviewing a years worth of amazing posts, and I don’t know if I did it justice, but I will say it was such an honor. As someone who encouraged me to start my own blog, you are truly an inspiration! I love your spirit and I hope it continues to shine bright in your blog! Keep writing, because I know we are all anxious to read more 😉
I love you and I wish you all the best darling!
xoxo
Visit her blog & show your support! I love you Anfal!

Modesty

After publishing my most recent blog post, DC Mipsterz | A Very Mipsterz Xmas, I started thinking a lot about how I present myself online. I’ve had this blog since 2009, and I’ve always posted pictures of myself, my experiences, and my interests. I never saw a problem with sharing myself with the world. Also, I NEVER used to send my blog link to people unless they asked, and most of the people who follow me have always been strangers and fellow bloggers. Lately, I’ve been sharing my blog a lot more because it’s something I’ve always loved and I want to feel motivated to keep up with it. I want others to be inspired to keep online journals and stay creative with what they love.

I NEVER get my makeup done… I rarely even have the desire to dress up. It was fun, and different. I posted the photos. Then I was talking to a friend and I passed on the link to my blog. He thought it was weird that I would post those photos and it looked like I wanted attention. Whether that’s true or not (I’m still trying to figure that out myself), all of a sudden I felt really insecure. I started questioning my intentions. What does a follower count matter if people are only following you because they find you attractive? The photos from my last post hardly even look like me… I would much rather people follow me because they enjoy reading thoughtful, funny, or insightful posts. If I want to adhere to modesty as I define it, I don’t need to attract unnecessary, meaningless attention.

My personal opinions, based on self-image, not on others’ behavior (INWARD, in word):
I don’t care about the turban. I find it completely appropriate and beautiful. I don’t care about the makeup, in moderation. I dressed up for an event but on the regular, I’d rather people know my natural, organic face. I don’t want to ever feel like I need to cover my face up and change my look, a phase I’ve already been through. What I’m more concerned with is how much of this I feel I need to post all over my blog and share with the world, and my reasons for sharing photos of my made-up self. It’s fun, it’s exciting, it’s flattering when people follow you, comment on your photos, or compliment your look. It’s tempting to want to be like this all the time, and be able to have all eyes on you all the time. I’d love to continue to share photos, I just want to make sure my intentions are right, and I’m not changing myself to please others, or solely trying to gain attention. This will always be a reflective journal for me, I have no desire to change it into a style blog. That’s just not me.

I admire women who are studying to become change agents in this world. I admire women who inspire others, who are innovative, who DESIRE to help others. I ASPIRE to be a woman who others look at as an example for reasons other than her body, looks, or style.

This is not to say I’ll remove images of myself I’ve posted in the past, or that I don’t love blogs about fashion or style. This is just a reflection I’m choosing to share with you. You define modesty for yourself.

As always, this is a…

JUDGE-FREE ZONE

all about me

I’m lost and I’m the only person who can find me.

It’s taking forever. Nothing seems productive. Guilt is bringing me down. I’ve become this extremely anxious girl who has lost her cape and found gravity. I was never like this! What happened to my free spirit and invincibility!? I can’t even ask for advice or help because I’m the only person who can help me. I need to put my “big girl pants” on, put my past behind me, become independent again, make decisions, forgive, motivate, and challenge myself. And lastly, I need to reach for the stars. And among the stars is where I’ll find myself.

But for now, I’m lost.

Self-Checkout

Today felt a little weird.
I went to the grocery store and got in line at self-checkout of course, because I’m the fastest self-checkout girl in the world. But I can’t help but notice that all the people who need to check out get into longer lines instead of lining up behind me. And this happens OFTEN. I try to start off speedy so that people will see that I’m not some foreigner girl that doesn’t know how to use the machine… but even a person that’s new to the states would PROBABLY be able to handle it. But I can’t even be that speedy because if I mess up something, the inconspicuous lane number will start flashing uncontrollably and summon the employees for help, and then I’d be living up to this stereotype that I don’t know anything because I wear a scarf and probably don’t speak English. So I have to be super efficient and get all my items swiped and into my reusable bags (nobody notices I’m SAVING THE PLANET), all while trying to balance the weight correctly so that it doesn’t stop me and prompt me to “remove an item from the bagging area” because the weights aren’t matching up. Smart aleck machines. It’s a tough sport, this self-checkout. The feeling afterwards is perfect. Because I’m always speedy, the people who avoid getting behind me end up WAY behind because I’m the fastest self-checkout girl in the world.

Or, they could just be lining up in the next line because that line offers Coke as an alternative to Pepsi. Who knows?