Category Archives: Changing The World, One Step At A Time

Be The Bigger Person

Hi lovelies! ❤️

It’s been forever since I updated my blog. Life just keeps happening, you know. Wait, lemme take that back. Life is not happening, life is banging across my face these days. There is so much on my plate I hardly have time to do anything. 😭

Now that I’ve written the “I’m back and hoping to be back for good” part, let’s get on with this post shall we?

Have you guys watched the movie ‘Wonder’? It was literally one of the most influential movies in 2017.

Trust me on this. No matter how ‘macho’ you are and all the excuses you have to not watch this, you got to watch it. Most definitely.

There are so many life lessons you can learn from ‘Wonder’ but something which I cannot seem to get off my head is Mr. Browne’s precept.

First of all, what is a precept? 🤔

Precepts are life codes. It’s in a way a cool word for rules. “Rules for really important things”.

This is Mr. Browne’s famous precept in the movie ‘Wonder’.

When given the choice between being right or being kind, chose kind. 😊

I personally think every single one of us can learn from this precept and change everyones lives for the better.

While choosing to be kind may sound so easy, the problem is that humans have a natural instinct to be right. Everyone always want to be right. Why is that? I’m assuming that’s because it makes us feel good, wise maybe.

The thing is, when you chose to be kind all the time and give up the chance to be right, in a way you are being the bigger person. People love being right. Instead you should love being the bigger person. Let’s not get ahead of ourselves and take this the wrong way now. 🙄

Being the bigger person means that you don’t let other people take control of your actions. It means your focus is on being a better person instead of being drowned in what others say or think about you. It means that instead of bashing out, you keep it in and ignore it. It means even though you don’t really have to be kind, you are being kind nonetheless.

Being the bigger person isn’t easy at all. It means you have to be more mature. It means even though you feel like slapping a person right across their face you smile and nod instead. It means that you have to pretend as if you didn’t hear the people you are giving a lift home shaming you and still give them that lift home and wave goodbye with a smile. It means you have to show love and compassion to people who are the most difficult to love. It’s like learning to accept an apology you never ever got. 💁🏻

I do get that ones take on this topic might be completely against mine. This is mainly because when you are hurt, you want to hurt that person back. Why? To make them feel the way you do.

Being the bigger person might seem like good advice to someone else, but when it’s your turn to be the bigger person it might seem like bullshit advice. That is exactly what we should work on. Why?

Hurting the person who hurt you makes you exactly like them. 😓

You don’t want to be like them. You hate the fact that people like them exist, so why would you want to increase the population of those people and include yourself in it?

Just think about it. Take as long as you want but think about it deeply.

If you were given the choice between being right or being kind, what would you chose? 😌

With Love. ❤️

Hearts Of Service

Hearts of Service is a group of young adults in Sri Lanka who does everything they can to empower and spread joy among people.

Here’s an interview I had with one of the co-founders of the group – Afra.

  1. How and when did this all start?

Answer: Isuri and I grew up together as schoolmates. [Lyceum International School, Wattala] We both were in the same class in Grade 1 and moving on to Grade 9, we were back together in the same class. Since then our friendship built, personalities developed and found ourselves with mutual passions to help build communities. In 2017, in aid of the flood victims we came together and since then we created a name, a logo and are continuing to pursue to change and creating a difference.

2. Did it start with the same amount of people there is now? If not, how did the community grow?

Answer: No. Initially, it was only the two of us, our families and our closest friends, but now we have a team of approximately 30 members and growing.

3. How many projects have you’ll accomplished so far?

Answer: We have completed 3 projects. Recovery aid for flood victims in Matara, Blood donation camp at Wattala, student empowerment workshop program at Peliyagoda.

4. How much of work does it take per project? How long does it take to get everything prepared for each project?

Answer: Depending on the circumstances and matter of urgency, it could take 3 days to 3 months.

5. How early (from the day of the project) do you plan a project?

Answer: Sometimes not early enough but at the end of the day it’s matter of completing the project within the goal time.

6. What’s the best thing about each project?

Answer: The lives we could change and the smiles on people’s faces.

7. What’s your favourite project to date?

Answer: The student empowerment workshop at Peliyagoda.

8. How does a person join ‘Hearts of Service’ if they wish to?

Answer: They could drop a message on our Facebook page, stating their name and contact number.

9. What’s your advice for anyone who wants to start a ‘Hearts of Service’ of their own?

Answer: Be you, take a leap of faith and bid farewell to naysayers.

Let’s End World Hunger

Have you ever wanted to end world hunger?

Of course you have.

I’m pretty sure that at least once in our life, that thought has crossed each and every one of our minds.

There’s a teeny tiny problem though. If we have all thought about it, why hasn’t it happened yet? Well, let me tell you why. It’s because you (yes you) haven’t read this conveniently inspiring article yet. I’m going to share a secret with you. I’m going to tell you how I think you and I could make this work.

There’s one little thing you gotta do before you read further. Press on that play button (if you can’t see a play button, that’s probably because you are not reading this on a web browser) and watch that short video. It won’t take much of your time.

Wow eh? I wouldn’t have added that to this article unless it was incredibly inspiring. If you were like me, you probably ended up replaying that video making your siblings and parents watch it too. If you were even more like me, you live in an extremely hot weathered country where you can’t seem to even stop withering away yourself. So how on Earth will you be able to grow crops?

Remember reading ‘conveniently inspiring’? The inspiring part is just over with (at least 90% of it), and the convenient part? I’m going to summarize all the best crops to grow in both hot and cold climates, just for you. This makes it so easy you don’t even have to waste a second more of your time figuring out what to grow. All you need to do is, get up, get your face off the screen and do your part to end hunger.

Warm Season –

  • Breakfast crops –
  1. Corn
  2. Sweet potato
  3. Cucumber
  4. Tomato
  5. Southern peas
  • Lunch/Dinner crops –
  1. Beans
  2. Eggplant
  3. Pumpkin
  4. Okra/Ladies fingers
  5. Zucchini
  6. Tomatillo
  7. Gourds
  • Dessert crops –
  1. Melons
  2. Watermelons
  3. Cantaloupe
  4. Honeydew

Cold Season –

  • Breakfast crops –
  1. Carrot
  2. Beets
  3. Turnip
  4. Potatoes
  5. English peas
  • Lunch/Dinner crops –
  1. Broccoli
  2. Brussels sprouts
  3. Cabbage
  4. Leeks
  5. Radish
  6. Spinach
  7. Parsley
  8. Celery
  9. Cauliflower
  10. Lettuce

These crops don’t fall into a warm or cold season category.

  1. Artichoke
  2. Asparagus
  3. Chive
  4. Parsnip
  5. Garlic
  6. Onion

Why I divided them under the ‘breakfast, lunch, dinner, dessert’ categories was to clearly show that these crops are certainly enough to feed a person three times a day. You can most definitely use the crops for whatever meal you want.

I will be starting my own garden very soon, in aim to feed people who have no choice but to go hungry. There will definitely be more posts regarding this. I truly can’t wait to get out there, do my part and share how I did it with you. Get started, I know you wanna join me too.

With Love.

 

Here’s some of my other posts aimed at fixing world issues –

Happy Reading!

PS – Don’t forget to subscribe to my blog (you can do this at the top of the right sidebar if you are on through computer, or at the end of this post if you are on through phone) to be up-to-date with the latest content. Cheers!

My Take On The LGBT Community

Dear Readers,

I got triggered.

I’ve been keeping my mouth shut for quite a while now, but I personally think it’s time I say something.

So what exactly triggered me? Well, there was this video of LGBT acceptance in Sri Lanka which led me to refer the comments on it. Like you probably would have guessed by now, the comment section was filled with so much hate.

Here are a few of the comments,

“The bus should be driven straight to the nearest hospital for treatment.” 

“Here comes the cultural destruction of Sri Lanka, let’s call it for what it is, let’s not disguise immorality with “acceptance” and “kindness” to normalize it.”

“Homosexuality is a disease of mind, same as pedophiles who so-called ‘prefer’ children. Unnatural shit getting promoted. That’s all what this is about. I have no problem with gays or LGBT wierdos doing what they do, in private. It’s that they try to shove their so called ‘pride’ in other people’s faces. Please just do your hideous things in closed rooms. And one thing, see, almost no one gave a single fuck about your rainbow butterfly chickenshit anyway.”

“A fast growing disease in western countries now in SL. WTF?” 

“Yeaaaaaaaaakkk!!!! Homos…………. Who brought them here?” 

First of all, just what? Are you kidding me?

Let me tell you what I believe in and support, loud and clear, before you start coming to conclusions like me being gay.

I do NOT support homosexuality. Maybe it’s because my religion doesn’t, maybe it’s because of my Sri Lankan culture, maybe I just don’t think it’s human nature, but that doesn’t matter. I just don’t.

Me not supporting homosexuality doesn’t mean I hate homosexuals. Why would I? Homosexuality doesn’t make people who they are! If you love people for their sexual preference, you’ve clearly got a huge problem there. You should love people for who they are, not for their sexual preference.

Me not supporting homosexuality basically means that I wouldn’t say “I support homosexuality”. Simply because I don’t, and I wouldn’t want to lie to myself or the world about anything. Even that, maybe I would later on. Just to show the world that I (being a Muslim) don’t hate homosexuals and they shouldn’t either. Who knows?

Hate is a weak emotion, a sign of failure.

This applies to any kind of hate at all. From hating people without hurting them (and their feelings) at all, all the way to a massive act of terror.

The funniest thing is how people love to point out other peoples “immorality”. For crying out loud, get your own morals sorted out first. If you were actually a moral person, you wouldn’t be pointing out others faults (or ‘so called faults’ in your mind) in the first place.

Yes, I do understand that you are “entitled to your own opinion”. However, if your opinion is one of hate, I recommend you respect yourself and respect others and keep your opinions to yourself. Seriously! You are not getting yourself anywhere by expressing hate.

Also, who are you to judge other people? Do you think you are God? Well, let me tell you something. You are not. Only God can judge us for what we do. So why do you even bother? Is there something you get out of it?

Come on people! We are only humans. We all do things, right and wrong. We all have different likes and dislikes. We all have different things we support. We are all different. There is only one thing which keep us alike. Our humanity.

Are we really going to let our humanity disappear? I hope not!

With Love.

 

Here’s some of my other posts aimed at fixing world issues –

Happy Reading!

PS – Don’t forget to subscribe to my blog (you can do this at the top of the right sidebar if you are on through computer, or at the end of this post if you are on through phone) to be up to date with the latest content. Cheers!

The Incredible Story Of Ghanim Al Muftah

Here’s the story of Ghanim Al Muftah.

I don’t really think there’s anything more I could possibly say about this video. It speaks for itself.

Just to encourage you to press the play button, this is a very inspiring story of a differently abled boy, which will definitely move you.

With Love.

PS – I missed my post for the day, I’m so sorry about that. This is my compensation for it. I hope you watched the video and got inspired! Cheers!


You can find more inspiring videos under Changing The World One Step At A Time – Let’s Focus On The Good.

Here’s A Few Direct Links –

Differently Abled Given Love, Support And Employment

Dis-abled? I think not. The better word is “differently abled”.

I am very touchy about this topic, because I have a loved one who is differently abled. He is diagnosed with down syndrome. Although we aren’t blood, he’s like my little brother. I have dreamt of someday making the world a better place for him.

I’ve dedicated the rest of my life to working hard, to make life easier for the lesser fortunate. Be it emotionally, physically, financially or anything basically.

In my mind, even though my family can’t possibly be categorized under ‘a rich family’, I wholeheartedly believe I’ve had my share of luck with unconditional love and support from my wonderful family. Having approached 18 years of living, and legally being an adult, it’s my turn to be the giver.

Now that you are able to know what I’m doing with my life, you’ll see that someday I’ll accomplish my dream and there will be an article titled ‘Aqueel’s Happy Place’ telling you all about it.

What may ‘Aqueel’s Happy Place’ be?

Inspired by GG’s flowers and Bitty & Beau’s, and my darling Aqueel, it’s going to be the first (hopefully) shop providing employment to differently abled people in Sri Lanka.

  • GG’s flowers – The Canberra florist is a family-run, socially-sustainable business, that was started as a way to create meaningful employment opportunities for people with special needs. If you are living in Canberra, the next time you want to buy some fresh flowers, make sure to buy them from GG’s flowers. You can check out their facebook page here.

  • Bitty & Beau’s – A coffee shop that provides jobs for those with intellectual and development disabilities. Amy Wright, whose two youngest children have down syndrome, started the business a year and a half ago. If you are living in North Carolina, the next time you want to head over for some coffee, make sure you go to Bitty & Beau’s. You can check out their facebook page here.

Here’s a video about why people love Bitty & Beau’s coffee shop –

Join us in our mission to give differently abled people love, support and meaningful employment. If you are able to do something like this, please go ahead and take the initiative to do so. Let’s change the world, one step at a time.

With Love.

 

You can find more inspiring videos under Changing The World One Step At A Time – Let’s Focus On The Good.

Here’s A Few Direct Links –

 

In Pursuit Of Perfection

You probably won’t understand my story at first. Just like everyone else, you will ask me if I’m insane. You will probably tell me that all I need is therapy. You’ll question as to why my parents never realized my condition until it got really bad. You will have a lot of questions.

It’s reasonable and I don’t blame you.

But that gives me all the more incentive to tell you to read until the very end.

It all started in 2012.

I was merely a chubby 13 year old with no concern whatsoever about my waist line or the fact that I ate twice as much as my friends at school breaks.

I was happy, I was laughing loudly, I had so many friends and everyone loved me. I was doing exceptionally well at school, both academically and in my extra curriculum.

I had an amazing relationship with my parents, they were (still are) my world.

I couldn’t ask for a better life.

Fast forward to 2013.

Imagine this life.

You stagger to the bathroom, using the wall to hold you up. You don’t remember the last time you ate a “normal” meal. You can hear your stomach growling from the lack of food for days.

Stepping on the scale will determine your mood for the day. If it has decreased since yesterday, you have succeeded; if it has stayed the same, or worse, gone up, those voices inside your head become stronger, telling you how useless you are.

When you look at the mirror, you see that your cheeks have hallowed, your t shirt cleaves inwards hugging just bone and skin. You can feel your ribs through your shirt and your collar bones show up so sharply.

But, your mirror tricks you.

This voice inside your head, tells you that you’re fat. So fat and ugly.

You remember the bodies of the models on the runway, so perfect, so thin, so flawless.

“I’m fat”, you tell yourself. The voices in your head keep telling you that being skinny is everything. They tell you that skinny is being beautiful, skinny is perfect and skinny is flawless. And you listen, wholeheartedly believing it.

You begin to develop an inexplicable hatred towards your “fat” body.

Whereas in truth you’re actually underweight, you’re cold and weak. You can hardly go through the day without thinking you’ll collapse. But there is this one thought which keeps pushing you forward.

The craving to burn calories as much as possible.

Throughout your day, you take the stairs and run the extra mile, you skip meals and avoid food at all costs, but sometimes you just can’t help it, you binge.

You keep stuffing in on whatever food is in sight and secretly purge in bathrooms where nobody can hear you.

No one notices, which is fine because that’s exactly what you want.

You clean up the remains of your act and secretly wipe the tears that well up in your eyes when you throw up. You compose yourself, smile at yourself in the mirror and walk out of the washroom as if nothing ever happened.

Sometimes you have to fake a cold and a few sneezes as an excuse for reddened eyes.

Sometimes you have to run the water loudly or flush the toilet, just to hide the sound of you forcefully jamming your finger down your throat and bringing up what you just ate.

Welcome to the life of a person with an eating disorder.

A life I lived for a good 3 years.

A person with an eating disorder lives a life of secrets. They could be Anorexic or Bulimic. If you did imagine what I related in the before paragraphs, well then, you’ve seen some very typical events of my life between the years of 2013 to 2015.

I flip flopped between both anorexia and bulimia , when I starved myself and consumed next to nothing, I was being anorexic and vice versa.

Now, let’s come to the most important question. WHY?

Why did this happen to me? Was I bullied? Was I abused?

The shocking answer is NO. My friends never laughed at my weight, I had a care free, happy, go lucky life with no worries whatsoever.

But then..

One fine day, I got on the weighing scale and I noticed something.

I noticed that my weight has dropped.

I noticed that I can actually fit into my favorite jeans again.

I liked it.

I liked this new look so much. As I continued to lose weight, people said I looked prettier. I could now fit into all those crop tops and chic jeans unlike in the past. Losing weight became my nicotine and I was addicted.

There you go. That was the trigger which gave rise to my eating disorder. It was that simple, no abuse, no bullying.

See, that’s the catch.

The persistent issue with eating disorders is the fact that individuals tend to hide it from their family, and that too, most efficiently.

A simple diet or a few comments on an increased waist line, a breakdown of ingredients on your favorite type of junk food, a few fashion magazines or even tightly fitting clothes can be that initial trigger for an eating disorder.

On the long run it can cost you your life. However far stretched this may sound, this is the situation in the real world.

With fashion goals being a size zero for designer wear and stick thin models hitting the runway, it is no wonder than 90% of the worlds women, aged between 12 to 25, and a shocking 25% of college students suffer from eating disorders.

The issue with eating disorders is that its causes cannot be contained to a few pinpointed reasons.

It took me a lot of time to come out of this situation, Not just time, but a lot of family fights, friendship breakups, many depressed nights and a lot of will power. To this date, I do not know how I finally silenced the voices of anorexia and bulimia commanding and paving my way to an early grave.

But, what is important is that I did it. And you know what? It’s been amazing ever since. I got through it. I hope and pray that you do too.

With Love.

PS – This is the story of one of my closest friends. She preferred to stay anonymous. Feel free to leave your thoughts, but please do not bombard me or her with more questions in the comment section.

PPS – Feel free to share this message out there. It could help someone who is battling their way through an eating disorder. You could save a life by a share.

Here’s some of my older posts aimed at fixing world issues –

Happy Reading!

Don’t forget to subscribe to my blog (you can do this at the top right sidebar if you are on through computer, or at the end of this post if you are on through phone) to be up to date with the latest content. Cheers!

 

 

Inside We Are All Black

A must watch because racism has become a huge issue nowadays!

These are the kind of things you should show on television commercials. Specially when it’s a commercial to a cartoon or a kiddies movie. It teaches the kid something really special, and makes his/her time worthwhile.

I think this video is really sweet and everyone should watch it. Show it to your parents, spouse, siblings, children, basically everyone.

With Love.

 

You can find more inspiring videos under Changing The World One Step At A Time – Let’s Focus On The Good.

Here’s A Few Direct Links –

Global Warming – What We Can Do About It

The Earth is not dying, it’s being killed.

What is global warming? It’s one of the most vexing environmental issues of our time. The Earth’s surface, oceans and the atmosphere is gradually heating up. Why is this a problem?

  • Melting of the polar ice caps – Rising of the sea level.
  • More frequent and severe weather – Floods, floods and more floods.
  • Air pollution.
  • Higher death rates.
  • Higher wildlife extinction rates.

Is that not enough of a list of problems? Why is global warming only taught to us in schools? These are the kind of things that should go viral in the internet.

So what can we do to save our only home?

Here’s 15 ways how to prevent killing our Earth –

  1. Speak up – Spread the message about global warming and why it’s so important to prevent it.
  2. Reduce, reuse, recycle – This step is the solution to almost any environmental issue.
  3. Power yourself, your homes with renewable energy – Use less energy, or if that’s very difficult to do, use renewable energy.
  4. Reduce heating and air-conditioning – It uses at least half of home energy. You can make your space more energy efficient by sealing drafts and ensuring it’s adequately insulated.
  5. Change your light bulbs – Use better light bulbs. LED lightbulbs use up to 80 percent less energy than conventional incandescents. They are also cheaper in the long run.
  6. Drive less, walk more – This is not only saving the Earth, it also keeps you fit. If you have to use a vehicle, use a fuel efficient vehicle.
  7. Charge your phone with a solar powered hybrid battery charger.
  8. Diaper your baby in soft, easy to wash, cloth diapers.
  9. Eat and drink local produce.
  10. Turn your yard into a wildlife preserve.
  11. Wear organic or fair trade clothes.
  12. Donate everything you can to resell shops.
  13. Take your own water bottle/coffee mug.
  14. Build an eco house or build eco into your existing house.
  15. Plant a tree.

Think globally, act locally.

Cheers to trying help save the world!

With Love.