Post-lockdown, everyone is still fixated on the importance of mastering the art of self-care. And rightly so. While in certain contexts, this word has been rendered a cliché with its focus on beauty and wellness consumption, its introduction also serves a deeper purpose. It reminds us to invest in ourselves and prioritise our needs in this fast-paced, chaotic and unpredictable life.
Commuting is one of the most universal human experiences: bumper-to-bumper in early morning traffic jams, stumbling while standing on a moving bus, or the sweat on your brow after a cycle to work. What is even more human is being nosey — and there’s nothing quite like peeking at what other people are reading while sitting on the train.
What someone is reading can tell us an awful lot about them, and so below we’ve decoded some of the most popular books you might be caught reading, and what it tells other people about you.
Flashback to February 2021: I have just finished the best summer of my life. Year 12 is over, lockdown is over, all my friends have just turned 18 — we are thriving. After riding this high, and discovering all the joys of being independent and venturing into adult life, I knew I wanted a change; a big one at that! I could have gotten a funky new haircut, or maybe reinvented my wardrobe, but no, I decided at the ripe age of 18 that I wanted to move out, all on my own.
People always say, ‘never meet your heroes’. Often the expectations are set so high that when you finally get the chance to meet them, you’ll be disappointed when they’re not at all what you imagined them to be. Not for me, though. The first time I met my idol was definitely one for the books, despite me making a complete fool of myself.
‘There are no conditions, simply a warm embrace and a welcome home. The lack of wholeness in humanity is an indication that we are not yet home, we are not expressing our true nature. And we have not yet flowered,’ says the Reiki healer Richard Ellis, who describes God as love, compassion, justice and forgiveness.
We all want our BFFs to be happy in love, on one condition: that I’m happy, too. It’s an age-old dilemma, you don’t like your friend’s partner. So, what do you do?
You probably want to yell ‘you can do so much better!’, maybe even grab their arms and shake some sense into them. You think back to all the wine-induced hours spent mapping out their ideal partner, based on everything from personality to how they will look in the wedding photos. For fuck’s sake, there were probably even Pinterest boards made. Why didn’t they listen to the Pinterest boards?! You love your friend and vow to always be there for them — yet any time they mention their significant other, you cringe with every fibre of your being. But what are you going to do? Tell them that their partner is a jerk? Is it truly your place? Should you shut the fuck up, keep your head down and secretly loathe their spouse? None of these seem to be viable possibilities.
I spent a lot of my high school years feeling a little disconnected from the people I surrounded myself with. I had friends — people I adored and spent all my spare time with, but I often found myself questioning whether they were really ‘my people’.
It’s undeniably human to have crushes. I mean, what’s the point of going to your weekly uni tutorial if not for the guy in the green sweatshirt who sits in the back left corner? Crushes enliven an excitement, giddiness and youthful feeling in us all. A crush takes me back to the start of Year 7, when 13-year-old me thought all the boys would just die over my side pony and rolled up skirt (spoiler: they didn’t). Whilst I’d like to think I’m past that particular trend, the sentiment remains — there’s nothing quite like a crush.
As I began writing this piece, I found myself instinctively addressing an unborn earthling. A twinkle in a mother’s eye, a tiny heartbeat, a bun in the oven. We all wish there was some manual, instruction booklet or dictionary warning us of the T&Cs that come with humanity. So, it seems fitting to dedicate this to you, Little One, whoever you are. Here’s what it means to be human:
After a few years of failed situationships, awkward first dates and many aunties and uncles asking, “are you seeing anyone at the moment?”, I have somehow found myself in a place of comfort in my independence. But I can confidently say: this wasn’t an easy place to get to.