Link Love (2014-09-20)

Thought-provoking

Yes, I am neurotic. Thank you for noticing – The Bloggess

“But under this new vow, I was shocked at how often I lied to people about little things, unimportant items that I easily could have been truthful about. It’s almost like I had a reflex to lie only about things I had no reason to lie about. Stamping this out was primarily logistical, like learning a new language. It wasn’t ethically challenging but more like focusing on conjugating verbs properly in Italian or French.” Two Years To No Lies – Medium

7 Essential Tricks to Make New Habits Stick – Danielle Dowling

“It’s part of the universal human experience: an irrational and unproductive obsession with what other people think of you. But with a little thought and perspective you can learn to rein in your self-conscious paranoia and better express your true self.” Taming the Mammoth: Why You Should Stop Caring What Other People Think – Life Hacker

The Art of Strategic Laziness – Tim Ferriss

“In a short-sighted way, it makes sense. Boys tend to be early adopters, after all, and show more overt interest in tech and gear. Boys are more likely to go into STEM fields than girls. But this is not only at a time when women were actively discouraged from “male” pursuits, it created a classic catch-22. Girls are presumed to not play games, therefore games are designed for and marketed towards boys; the marketing tells girls that this isn’t for them, therefore they don’t take part, confirming that girls don’t play games. Of course, this focus on a single demographic necessitated tunnel vision that ignored the glaringly obvious: that women were out there, that women played games and would do so in droves when given the opportunity. Myst famously outsold Doom  – released in the same year – and had a dominant female player base. The Sims – another incredibly successful franchise – has long held an incredibly sizable female audience. But all eyes were focused on “guy” games – first-person shooters, flight sims, etc. which continued to dominate the discourse and definition of “what is a gamer”.” The End of Gatekeeping: The Extinction Burst of Gaming Culture – Paging Dr NerdLove

Equality

“A young woman takes naked pictures of herself and texts or emails them to a lover, or keeps them for her own amusement. There is nothing wrong with this.
There is, however, something very wrong with anyone who seeks to exploit or humiliate that woman by violating her trust and/or basic right to privacy by splashing those images online.
Equality begins with a woman’s ability to have control over her own body (….including naked representations thereof).” thoughts on Jennifer Lawrence’s photos hacked + leaked online – Justine Musk

6 Things White Parents Can do to Raise Racially Conscious Children – Everyday Feminism

“Perhaps unsurprisingly critical feedback was doled out in a much higher ratio to women: 58.9% of men’s reviews contained critical feedback, while an overwhelming 87.9% of the reviews received by women did.
Not only did women receive more criticism in their performance reviews, it was less constructive and more personal.” The One Word Men Never See In Their Performance Reviews – Fast Company

Inspirational

“Hatred is a normal human emotion and, like all emotions, is just a signal. It is similar to judgment in that it is showing us, every single time, where our own inner work of acceptance is and where we have pieces of ourselves that we are hiding or rejecting. The qualities that we hate in another, or in ourselves, are the very qualities that we need to reclaim and integrate into our lives.” Self hate is the path to self love – Christie Inge

The Dark Secret of The Chronically Ill: Clutter and Mess! – Rest Ministries

“In their book they suggest holding “the critical self with kindness, recognizing that it comes from being threatened or hurt in the past.” For instance, maybe the younger you is just trying to be protective, so you don’t receive the same cruel comments and feel so bad today.
Instead of fighting your inner critic, consider working with it. In fact, talk to it. The authors suggest connecting with the fear underlying your inner critic (going only as deep as you feel comfortable).” A Unique Way to Approach Your Inner Critic – Weightless

Health

Sweden Becomes First Western Nation to Reject Low-Fat Dogma in Favor of Low-Carb High Fat Nutrition – Health Impact News

The truth about “gluten snobs” – Salon

Low-Salt Diets May Pose Health Risks, Study Finds – WSJ

How to Store Fresh Produce – Real Food Real Deals

Recipes

Teriyaki Sauce – Strictly Paleo

Coconut Butter Buttons – The Coconut Mama

Beet Kvass: Your Daily Health Shot – Laura Green Psychology

Sweet and Sour Paleo Meatballs – Gutsy By Nature

Grain-Free Rolls – Against All Grain

Coconut Caramel Fudge – Merit + Fork

The Paleo Approach Cookbook Preview: Barbecue Sauce – The Paleo Mom

Primal Fuel Bars – Mark’s Daily Apple

Fresh Ginger Syrup – David Lebovitz

Basil Pesto (AIP) – The Primordial Table

Link Love (2014-09-13)

Thought-provoking

Janet Iwasa: How animations can help scientists test a hypothesis – TED

“This suggests that the ways we learn are more similar than different. Some people might be better at learning certain types of things than others, but given a particular subject, science hasn’t different ways of learning it that are consistently better for some people but not others.” Seven Principles of Learning Better from Cognitive Science – Scott H Young

Megan Washington: Why I live in mortal dread of public speaking – TED

The last piece of advice for you: build a morning routine around something you’re looking forward to doing.  I used to love my quiet nights spent yelling into my computer or at my TV playing games, but now I honestly look forward to my quiet mornings, waking up with the sun, and going through my full morning routine in a silent house.” How to Become a Morning Person – NerdFitness

Top 10 Skills We Wish Were Taught in School, But Usually Aren’t – Life Hacker

“Back when Trayvon Martin was ion the front pages, there was much discussion of previous suspensions for marijuana use. But does marijuana use warrant the death sentence? Was Zimmerman allowed to kill Trayvon because Trayvon had been suspended from school and smoked pot? Trayvon didn’t have a gun, he was out to buy iced tea and skittles. But do you have any idea how many people defended Zimmerman on the basis of Trayvon’s suspensions and pot smoking, and even talked about how Zimmerman had bettered the world by getting rid of one more “thug”?
So many times we are told that the person killed—whether Trayvon or Mike Brown or one of the many others—was a “thug.” They smoked pot, they had a criminal record, and so forth, as though these things somehow justify extrajudicial murders.” What’s a Death Sentence in the Grand Old USA – Love, Joy, Feminism

Religion

“There were so many things my nan never knew about me. I couldn’t tell her. She wouldn’t have understood. She would have worried about me endlessly. My meaning and her understandings would have been too different. So I never told her that I was queer, or that I didn’t believe in the religion that she built her life around. My meanings- that here is how my heart is made, that here is where my love of understanding and truth took me- would not have been what she heard. That disconnect, and how much I know it would have hurt her to hear those things, kept me from ever sharing them with her. I couldn’t inflict that worry on someone I love so much. That tears me inside.” When My Nan Died: Religion, Closets and Love – Consider the Tea Cosy

“This is one of the very biggest things about Christianity that bothers me: the selfishness it inspires.  People believe that when things work out well for them, god has smiled on them, god has granted them favor because they are worthy.  The problem with this thinking is that, logically, it would follow that when things don’t work out well for people, god has deemed them unworthy.  So this God of Goodness plays favorites.  Or at least he plays head games.” Guest Post: No Thanks to God by Lisa Morguess – Raising Kids Without Religion

Equality

“Everywhere, girls come to expect male violence. That double-digit gaps exist, particularly in develop nations, only illustrates more profound inequities. We are socialized to think that sexual assault, and having to bear the costs of avoiding it, is “normal.” Children and women are socialized to fear it and we adapt our behavior to avoid or, if exercised by loved ones or friends, to tolerate it. It’s why we are told develop “buddy systems,” carry “rape whistles,” “don’t wear ponytails,” and more fundamentally useless advice.” Stop Minimizing the Costs of Teaching Girls to “Stay Safe” – Soraya Chemaly – Huffington Post

What I Learned After Taking a Homeless Mother Grocery Shopping – Babble

“The implications of this are horrifying. It has sent a clear message to women in Ireland that if you are suicidal and seek an abortion which you are constitutionally entitled to, you run the risk of medical practitioners compelling you to wait until the foetus is viable and then having a c-section forcibly performed on you. This woman was in a very vulnerable position given the multiple traumas she had endured. It is the stuff of nightmares. There are other women who are suicidal as a result of pregnancy and access abortion services because they have the means and support to travel. Some contact Women on Web and some contract the Abortion Support Network. Some will borrow money from friends. Those who don’t have internet or phone access to make appointments or ability to leave the country, or money to pay, and will take other steps. Some will borrow from money-lenders, others might throw themselves down stairs. But those who are pregnant and suicidal will not go to these panels, the risk is too great.” To them, we are nothing but vessels – Feminist Ire

4 Ways to Honor Native Americans Without Appropriating Our Culture – Everyday Feminism

Beauty & Body Image

Why We’ve Learned to Hate Our Bodies – Everyday Feminism

“Overall, my biggest “issue” is my all-or-nothing attitude. Too often, I overwhelm myself by planning out how I’m going to do something, so it will be “perfect,” and then have an anxiety attack at the last minute because it’s not. Of course it’s not! Then, I go to the opposite extreme and give up (I have done this with diets, and shopping “bans”).” Outfit / Most of All Have Fun – Gretchen’s Closet

Because You’re Worth It: Masstige and Beauty Bargains – The Beheld

Inspirational

“I’ve always been a pretty sensitive person.
I’m one of those people where if someone I’m living with comes home upset or stressed I’ll know it the second they walk in the door — even if I never even saw them. If the people I’m coming to visit are upset or depressed, I will know the second I walk in the door. If someone around me expressing their stress verbally (even if it’s not at all directed at me), my body feels all shaken and it’s very challenging for me to focus on any task.” How to Be Happy When Other People Are Draining You – Jennifer Twardowski

Are you engaging in self-inflicted negativity? – Stardust

“Sweet, worried, young Danielle,
It’s safe to dream.
You can take care of what is important to you.
You can handle whatever comes your way.
There is no achievement and no failure you can make that will ever affect your intrinsic value as a human being.
You are smart and resilient and with a lot of faith and a whole lotta hustle there is nothing you can’t accomplish.
You’ve always figured it out and you always will.
There has never been a situation you haven’t figured it out, so why would this moment be any different?” Notes to My Younger Self – Danielle Dowling

11 Morning Rituals that Can Change Your Life – Bembu

“You cannot love someone you don’t know. In the end, that’s why so many people in our society don’t love themselves, or each other. Not because they don’t try, but because they don’t know themselves.
Once you find who you are—who you really are—self-love is not an option. And neither is unconditional human love, for that matter, because once you find that spark of magic inside of you that makes your heart beat, you find that magic in all of us.” Mind Over Melodrama: 5 Lessons on Self-Awareness and Healing – Tiny Buddha

How to Feel Your Feelings – Christie Inge

Health

Everything You Need to Know About Sleep – Nerd Fitness

“What if depression isn’t caused by a “chemical imbalance” after all? More specifically, what if depression itself is not a disease, but a symptom of an underlying problem?
That is exactly what the most recent research on depression is telling us. A new theory called the “Immune Cytokine Model of Depression” holds that depression is not a disease itself, but instead a “multifaceted sign of chronic immune system activation.” (3)
To put it plainly: depression may be a symptom of chronic inflammation.” Is Depression a Disease or a Symptom of Inflammation – Chris Kresser

Would Grok Work Overtime – Mark Sisson

Gut Bacteria May Influence Eating Habits, Study Finds – TIME

The Truth About “Homeopathic” Medicine – Tim Ferriss

Recipes

Spicy Salmon with Heirloom Tomato Salsa – Once A Month Meals

Italian Vinaigrette – Simple Healthy Home

Ranch Dressing – The Gingered Nectarine

Guest Post: Grain-free Flatbread with Balsamic Basil Pesto – Against All Grain

Homemade “Nutella” – The Coconut Mama

Paleo Samosa – My Heart Beets

Grain Free Chocolate Crepes – Life Made Full

Dark Chocolate Coconut Bars – Delicious Obsessions

Salted Caramel Almond Butter – Honey & Figs

Danish Ribbensteg (Crispy Skin Pork Roast) Recipe – Paleo Hacks

Link Love (2014-09-06)

Thought-provoking

“OPTION ONE: Complain and use the diagnosis as an excuse for inaction. “Sorry, I can’t exercise, I have a bad knee/back/genetics/whatever. Now, hand me the remote and that pint of ice cream. Damn my poor luck!” Unfortunately, life isn’t fair. Some people get to play life on Easy Mode, while others have to play on Legendary Difficulty. That’s just how it works.
OPTION TWO – Become Iron Man: Identify your shrapnel – get x-rays, a check-up, or whatever you need to identify the source of your ailment. Then, accept that you’ll need to make some changes moving forward if you’re going to rise and become Iron Man. You’re going to realize that through some tinkering you can build a stronger self.” What Would Iron Man Do? – NerdFitness

Karima Bennoune: When people of Muslim heritage challenge fundamentalism – TED

“So what if instead of serial relationships one after the other we had parallel ones running alongside one another? Would this improve the odds of some of our key partnerships lasting? The mathematics of probability would say “yes”. As a child I was warned against placing all of my eggs in one basket. Yet as a grown up, I’m being told to do exactly that. Yet the real conundrum here is that none of us are really doing that anyway. So why pretend that we are?” Isn’t it time we admitted we’re all a bit polyamorous? – New Statesman

David Kwong: Two nerdy obsessions meet – and it’s magic – TED

“Sometimes people who are sick- or people who are vulnerable or traumatised or even just plain lonely- do fucked-up, self-destructive things. Sometimes those things are a cry for help or for attention.
I figure, if someone’s sick or lonely or vulnerable or traumatised enough to be willing to harm themselves (or risk killing themselves) for the possibility of some help or attention? We might want to do something other than mock them for that. Maybe we should start paying attention.” Suicide and Self-harm: What’s so terrible about looking for attention? – Consider the Tea Cosy

4 Things You Need To Do To Have A Balanced Relationship – Everyday Feminism

Religion

“I have this recurring problem, and I wonder if any of you can relate. I interact with people “in real life” every day and the feedback I get is usually quite positive. I mean people generally seem to like me, you know? I’m a fairly articulate guy, plenty well-groomed, and I dress professionally (most of the time). I’m kind to people, endlessly patient, and generally resourceful at each task I’m given. Sound pretty okay, right? Sure, and bear with me a minute; there’s a point to this. I’m also quite self-sacrificial, I work pretty hard (I have three jobs currently, not counting writing), I seldom rest, and I have pretty high standards for both my professional and my personal lives. People who know me generally give glowing reports for most of what I do.
Until they find out I’m an atheist.
Once that happens, their perception of me heads south, plunging to the depths of disapproval so fast it makes my head spin. It’s disorienting, truly. Also, it’s angering, and rightly so, I think. People I’ve known for years will reverse their opinion of me the instant they find out I don’t believe the same things they believe. How is that possible? And is that really fair? It’s not that I haven’t made my share of mistakes because lemme tell you, I have. But my flaws are no more egregious than those of most of the others I know, and like any ethically-driven person I’m always working on mine. I’m keenly aware of my own weaknesses and am always striving to improve on them to the best of my ability. But that doesn’t seem to matter. Once people learn this about me, it seems to overrule everything else they’ve known about me. For them, belief trumps character every time. But why?” Character Versus Belief – Godless in Dixie

“I’m told that the Duggar children are happy, so clearly my concerns are unjustified. But you know what? The fact that the Duggar children look happy does not actually tell you anything about whether they are happy. This sounds like a rather astounding statement on my part, doesn’t it? Well bear with me! The Duggars follow parenting methods that teach that children should only ever be allowed to be cheerful, smiling, and happy. Yes, really. Those are the only emotions that are permitted.” An Open Letter to Duggar Defenders – Love, Joy, Feminism

Equality

“Did you know that people with black-sounding names are 50% less likely to be called back for an interview than people with identical resumes but white-sounding names? Or that while black youth are less likely to abuse drugs or alcohol than white youth, they are 10 times more likely to be sent to prison for drug offenses than are whites? Blacks receive  higher sentences than whites for the same crimes, and receivehigher penalties when the victims are white than when the victims are other African Americans. In one year, 80% of those sentenced for crack cocaine offenses were black while less than 1/3 of crack cocaine users were black. One in three black men can expect to spend time in prison at some point in their lives. Whites are more likely to pull a trigger on a black assailant than a white one.” Educating My White Privilege – Love, Joy, Feminism

“In the United States, access to tampons and pads for low-income women is a real problem, too: food stamps don’t cover feminine hygiene products, so some women resort to selling their food stamps in order to pay for “luxuries” like tampons. Women in prison often don’t have access to sanitary products at all, and the high cost of a product that half the population needs multiple times a day, every month for approximately 30 years, is simply, well, bullshit.” The case for free tampons – Jessica Valenti – The Guardian

“Here’s the thing: even if she was cheating on him  – hell, even if he caught her in the middle of fucking his best friend while writing insults about his mother on her Facebook page and singing “‘Enry the Eigth” to the tune of “I’m cheating on my boyfriend because fuck him that’s why” – this does not mean she deserved to have a finger laid on her, never mind trying to rape and potentially murder her. There is no justification for beating her. None.
And yet every time, every time, we hear about a man beating a woman, there is inevitably a chorus that chimes in with some variation of “well, maybe the bitch deserved it.” We heard it from War Machine’s fans. We’ve heard it from Chris Brown’s fans after he assaulted Rihanna. We heard it when Charles Saatchi wrapped his hands around Nigella Lawson’s throat. We heard it when Charlie Sheen choked Capri Anderson and threatened to kill her. And we hear it time and time again on the individual level, when non-celebrities are abused by their partners.” Christy Mack and the Crime of “Being a Slut” – Dr NerdLove

Inspirational

“Rituals can have a profound impact on us HSP’s: they calm and ground us, soothe the spirit, slow us down, remind us to live in the present moment, nourish our soul and remind us that we are responsible for our own well-being.” Why Sensitive Souls Need Rituals – Kathryn Nulf

What Difference Can Being Present Make? – Mark’s Daily Apple

What we want more than anything is to be loved, valued and seen.
It crushes us to be ignored or looked over.  Human beings are at our best when we’re in supportive relationships with each other. We crave connection, affection + validation.
It is written into our DNA.
And it is because we need connection so intensely that we fear the loss of it so severely.
The fear of loss is so monumental that we often pretend
we don’t need connection to survive.
The ultimate lie we tell ourselves is that we will never need anyone else.
We think we can do it on our own.” #1 Lie We Tell Ourselves + Why Dependancy Is Good – Danielle Dowling

The busyness trap – why “I’m too busy isn’t good enough” – Stardust

“But, in my heart I was yearning for friendships where I could show up exactly as I was – and know that I could be held there. That I could be just as bright and sparkly and open-hearted as I am in my true nature, and those parts of me would be celebrated and cradled with care. That I could sob, face against the floor, in the middle of the night and you wouldn’t be inconvenienced by my sadness.” A Circle That Can Hold Anything – Mara Glatzel

Monday Mantra: Self-care Is Not Selfish – Dr Romie

Health

Why you want more stomach acid, not less – Balanced Bites

Yoga is Not for Posers – The Role of Inquiry in Yoga – Thank Your Body

At-home fermentation (no science degree required) – Whole9

Are you struggling with anxiety? – Yoga for Endometriosis & Pelvic Pain

Recipes

Apricot-Almondt “KIND” Bars (GF) – The Nourishing Home

Paleo Ginger Chicken Breasts over Green Spinach – Once a Month Meals

Creamy AIP Mayo – He Won’t Know It’s Paleo

Mango Guacamole (nightshade free) – Meatified

Almond Pulp Double Chocolate Cookies – Against All Grain

Perfect Paleo Crepes – Paleo Non Paleo

Dark Chocolate Gelato (dairy-free, nut-free, coconut-free) – The Paleo Mom

Peachy Bacon Wilted Kale Salad (AIP) – The Primitive Homemaker

Coconut Oil Chocolate: The Ultimate Metabolism-Boosting Snack – Butter Believer

Flourless Chocolate Coconut Butter Cake – The Coconut Mama

Writer’s Wednesday: How to Fall In Love by Cecelia Ahern

TW for suicide, and discussions around suicide.

how to fall in loveIn my head I always finish the title of this chick lit novel by Cecelia Ahern as How to Fall in Love (With Life). Cause that’s really what it boils down to.

Cecelia Ahern is one of my favourite chick lit writers, because she’s continously able to turn what could be “just another chick lit” into a story with much deeper meaning. She did it with The Time of My Life, If You Could See Me Now and There’s No Place Like Here, and she’s done it again with How to Fall in Love.

It is the story of Christine and Adam, and how life throws them together one night, just as Adam is about to jump from a bridge. Christine manages to get Adam to make a deal – she has two weeks to show him that his life is worth living.

To be honest the idea of the story seemed a bit… contrived to me, but because I have enjoyed Ahern’s other books I decided to give it a go, cause it was so worth it. Beautiful, sweet and full of meaning. If you don’t mind chick lit I highly recommend it.

 

As always I invite you to find me and connect with me on Goodreads.

Link Love (2014-08-30)

Thought-provoking

“One of the most vital components to creating a happy, healthy, and fulfilling relationship is to become a master at setting boundaries in relationships.  In simple terms, boundaries are the thing that keeps us separate from the other person.  The boundaries are what set the place between where you end and the other person begins.” 6 Steps to Setting Boundaries in Relationships – Jennifer Twardowski

“Studies have shown that although self-compassion involves forgiving yourself for mistakes, it doesn’t make people any less likely to strive high. In fact, people with high levels of self-compassion are more likely to want to improve than those with high self-esteem. Self-compassion puts mistakes into perspective, but also makes us more likely to see our weaknesses as being changeable, whereas those with high self-esteem tend to attribute weaknesses and mistakes to external influences.” Practice Self-Compassion to Improve How You Feel About Yourself – LifeHacker

When you and your partner laugh together, you put defenses on hold and open yourself up to a new kind of connection. All that giggling deepens emotional intimacy and allows greater trust to take hold.
So don’t be afraid to cultivate the inside joke.
To have kitchen dance parties and even the occasional food fight.
Life is short. Spend it laughing with the one you love.” The Happy Couples Secret Weapon – Danielle Dowling

“See, sex and being sexual compatibility are one of the most important parts of maintaining a relationship. In fact, it’s one of the most common reasons why relationships end. But at the same time, sex remains incredibly important to relationships… right up until it suddenly isn’t. When we complain about being dissatisfied with our sex-lives then you rish plunging head-first into a wall of razor-sharp judgement from just about everyone around you. If the sexual dissatisfaction doesn’t conform to a very specific narrative… well, you’re really being selfish at best and a perv at worst.” Are You Sexually Compatible? – Dr NerdLove

“So the most important question for someone who wants to be successful today—and far into the future—is this: How do you evolve? To be more specific, how do you explore your passions and your creativity, and how do you figure out ways to continually develop or reinvent yourself and your businesses—both in a creative way, and to have a creative edge?” The Most Important Question for Someone  Who Wants to be Succesful: How Do You Evolve? – Live in the Grey

4. Agree heartily; disagree softly. When someone agrees with you, it establishes an instant bond. Suddenly, you both have something in common. However, the strongest professional relationships exhibit mutual respect and admiration, even in disagreements. Tolerance and respect for others, especially when they disagree with you, is vital to successful networking. If you strongly disagree with someone’s opinion, softly communicate that you don’t see it the same way. Ask questions and allow the person to fully express his or her reasoning.” 6 Ways to Improve Your Conversations – Entrepreneur

Religion

“Religion in America is a touchy topic. Professor, scientist, and outspoken atheist Richard Dawkins caused an outcry when, in his book The God Delusion, he said religious indoctrination was a form of child abuse. His statement raises a question of whether it’s possible for children to have a religious upbringing that is not indoctrination. The answer to the question depends partly upon the nature of belief. Plato is often credited with the statement that knowledge is justified true belief. If a belief is true and one has justification to back it up, the belief is considered knowledge.
Religion, however, is stuck in the belief stage because of the reliance on faith. Without a logical framework, religion never becomes knowledge. Convincing a child that religion is true requires that the child suspend his or her rational thought.” How I Went from Being a Southern Baptist Preacher’s Daughter to an Open Atheist – Alternet

“And there it is. This is Michael’s argument—wives are to obey their husbands, even if their husbands are cruel and abusive, even if obeying their husbands means years or decades of unjust suffering. Why? Because God. And you know what? God’s a-okay with women married to abusive husbands suffering wrongfully. In fact, he thinks it’s totes awesome.” CTBHHM: It Is Acceptable to God – Love, Joy, Feminism

“The problem is that for most of U.S. history, Christians haven’t been persecuted—at least not in comparison to early believers or even what Christians in places like Iraq face today. So, the question for American Christians is what to make of the Bible’s warning that we will be persecuted. For many evangelicals, the lack of very public and dramatic persecution could be interpreted as a sign that they just aren’t faithful enough: If they were persecuted, they could be confident they are saved. This creates an incentive to interpret personal experiences and news events as signs of oppression, which are ostensibly validations of our commitment to Christ. The danger of this view is that believers can come to see victimhood as an essential part of their identity.” The Evangelical Persecution Complex – The Atlantic

11 Things Atheists Couldn’t Do – Huffington Post

“I am hurt.
This is a portrait of the woman, hurt by some of the very things she was taught would save her.
It’s not just about my irregular hymen. That makes for a dramatic story, of course, and it was anguishing to live.
But even if my husband and I had fully, awkwardly consummated our marriage on our wedding night, I would still be angry.
Because my sexuality is mine. It is a part of me. It is mine to know, to enjoy, to create life with.
And the church made it not-mine.
I believed that if I waited to have sex, I would be handing my husband a priceless gift.
But the reality is that I gave my sexuality to the church — or to God, if that sits better with you. And therefore it was not mine to give to anyone else. I didn’t have a clue about how my body worked, about anything but the very basic mechanics of sex.
And I think that for a woman to reach her marriage bed without a working knowledge of her sexuality — without knowing what makes her tick, sigh, moan, orgasm — she has nothing to give to her husband but a passive piece of flesh.
An unknowledgeable, fearful woman lying flinching on a mattress is not much of a gift at all.” Sex and Marriage: Thoughts on Waiting – Beth Morey

Equality

“Finally, he had his “come to Jesus” moment and the bell rang. This would be his civil-rights struggle. He would serve women in their darkest moment of need. “The protesters say they’re opposed to abortion because they’re Christian,” Parker says. “It’s hard for them to accept that I do abortions because I’m a Christian.” He gave up obstetrics to become a full-time abortionist on the day, five years ago, that George Tiller was murdered in church.” The Abortion Ministry of Dr. Willie Parker – Esquire

Study: Women More Likely to be Lied to in Negotiations than Men – Time

“Sports is a fandom. It requires zealous attention to “seasons,” knowledge of details considered obscure to those not involved in that fandom, unbelievable amounts of merchandise, and even “fanfic” in the form of fantasy teams. But this is a masculine-coded fandom. And as such, it’s encouraged – built into our economy! Have you *seen* Dish network’s “ultimate fan” advertisements, which literally base selling of a product around the normalization of all consuming (male) obsession? Or the very existence of sports bars, built around the link between fans and community enjoyment and analysis. Sport fandom is so ingrained in our culture that major events are treated like holidays (my gym closes for the Super Bowl) — and can you imagine being laughed at for admitting you didn’t know the difference between Supernatural and The X Files the way you might if you admit you don’t know the rules of football vs baseball, or basketball?
“Fandom” is not childish but we live in a culture that commodified women’s time in such away that their hobbies have to be “frivolous,” because “mature” women’s interests are supposed to be marriage, family, and overall care taking: things that allow others to continue their own special interests, while leaving women without a space of their own.” Do you ever think you’ll stop drawing fanart? – Danielle Lavigne

“Gay’s book addresses the cognitive dissonance many young feminists feel in the 21st century: the internal conflict between feminist ideals and the realities of the imperfect self. We feel shame or shamed for engaging in certain politically incorrect behaviors. This feminist “imposter syndrome” has the effect of robbing women of personal autonomy, ironically defeating the purpose of feminism entirely.” This Is Why You’re a ‘Bad Feminist’ – xoJane

Beauty & Body Image

“Why this fascination with the woman who doesn’t know she’s beautiful, the idealization of low self-esteem? It orients the singer as a savior — the sensitive soul whom this girl, who has been slaving away day in and day out in front of a mirror that just won’t reveal the beauty she longs to see, desperately requires. These aren’t songs for young men, who, theoretically, could listen and reconsider their standards of female beauty. These are songs for girls who get the message that insecurity has romantic value, if only because it’s the necessary setup to the grand moment in which they find the boys who — god bless them! — finally pull them out of it.
By all means, write songs about how beautiful women are. Write songs about how beautiful men are too! (Incidentally, if you’re unsure how specifically gendered this trope is: Try to imagine a song in which a female singer says just how much she wants to make a guy “feel beautiful.”) But don’t assume we’re uncomfortable in our skin just because we dress it up when we present it to the world. Don’t tell us we don’t know we’re beautiful, and certainly don’t tell us that our ignorance to this fact is our best quality. We’re good.” Let’s Stop Singing Songs About Women Who Don’t Know They’re Beautiful – Buzzfeed

Inspirational

“Sometimes we don’t want to do the things that we need to do to take care of ourselves.
Sometimes, we talk ourselves out of healthy behaviors using the bright and shiny language of wanting to feel good all the time – making our not wanting to do it mean that it’s not right for us.
But, we don’t always want to do the things that we need to do to take care of ourselves.” Body Love & Radical Self-Responsibility: Holding the Framework – Mara Glatzel

10 Things You Need to Deal With (That You’ve Been Avoiding) – Nicole Liloia 

“Self-care, you see, isn’t about the frills. It is about your ability to function in a positive, productive way in the world. Let’s face it. We’ve all heard this sound advice for when things go south on every airline flight we’ve ever taken: if you are traveling with someone who needs assistance, be sure to put on your oxygen mask first. The fact is you cannot be all that helpful to the person who needs assistance if you are passed out on the floor.
Put that way, basic self-care isn’t just an indulgence. It is an act of survival. It helps you function better, be better, feel better. Self-care improves your overall sense of wellbeing, allowing you to really give your best gifts to the world. And, ultimately, we are each here to do just that.” Surveying the Self-Care Scene – Rosie Molinary

How to Let Go, Dare Sooner + Make Peace With Your Past – Danielle Dowling

6. I stopped being perpetually wired to my phone – it’s hard to be present or in the moment when your thumb is constantly scrolling through your feed. If you’ve ever tried to listen to someone talking whilst looking through Facebook or Instagram, you’ll know it’s pretty hard to do the two at once, and usually you’ll end up preferring your device while half-listening and nodding to the person talking to you. Not cool. People deserve the respect of being listened to – and when I realised I was barely present in a lot of my social interactions, I knew something had to change. I sometimes find it hard to know when to disconnect, but making a conscious effort to be in the moment has made me feel less negative and stressed overall.” How I escaped some of my negative patterns and embraced positivity – Stardust

“Pleasure teaches us that life doesn’t have to feel like swimming up stream or hiking Mt. Everest barefoot. I used to think it did. I used think that toxic levels of stress, a wildly abusive inner critic, and days spent striving for perfection were normal and what life was all about.
No. More.
With pleasure as my carrot I don’t need a stick.
And neither do you.” The ABCs of Self-Love: P is for Pleasure – Rachel W. Cole

Health

Troubleshooting Your Digestive Issues: Signs & Symptoms of Digestive Upset (part 1) – Balanced Bites

Can Sweeteners Fit Into a Healthy Diet – Chris Kresser

Rethinking Sterile: The Hospital Microbiome – Environmental Health Perspectives

How to Safely Expose Your Kids to Dirt – Mark’s Daily Apple

Recipes

Mango Sorbet with Mint (AIP) – Meatified

Raspberry Ginger Iced Green Tea – Richly Rooted

Cherry Chocolate Chip “KIND” Bars (GF) – The Nourishing Home

Paleo Crockpot Meatballs – Once A Month Meals

NOmato Sauce (AIP) – The Primordial Table

Watermelon Salad with Red Onion and Feta – Thank Your Body

Grilled Beef Heart w/ Lemon and Cracked Pepper Marinade – The Not So Desperate Housewife

Save Those Stems! Make Strawberry Vinegar! – And Here We Are

Swedish Meatballs – The Paleo Mom

Homemade Almond Milk – Against All Grain

Link Love (2014-08-23)

Thought-provoking

“Being overly smart is obnoxious, being wise is a turn on. There’s something irresistible about someone you can learn from. The need for banter and witty conversation is more imperative than you may believe, and falling in love with a reader will enhance not just the conversation, but the level of it.
According to Cunningham, readers are more intelligent, due to their increased vocabulary and memory skills, along with their ability to spot patterns. They have higher cognitive functions than the average non-reader and can communicate more thoroughly and effectively.
Finding someone who reads is like dating a thousand souls. It’s gaining the experience they’ve gained from everything they’ve ever read and the wisdom that comes with those experiences. It’s like dating a professor, a romantic and an explorer.
If you date someone who reads, then you, too, will live a thousand different lives.” Why Readers, Scientifically, Are The Best People To Fall In Love With – Elite Daily

How Creative Hobbies Make Us Better At Basically Everything – Fast Company

“On the other hand, perhaps I am modeling more valuable lessons: No adult is entitled to a relationship with another person. There is no relationship so sacred that it cannot and should not be destroyed by abuse, cruelty, and backbiting. If we want to be loved, we must act lovingly.” Sometimes It’s Necessary to Divorce Your Parents – Role/Reboot

Religion

“Oh noes! Knowing that people leave Christianity might encourage those who have left Christianity and demoralize Christians! Wait, is this seriously an argument? Because to me it sounds like Gingrich is suggesting we should suppress stories of deconversions, because they’re subversive. For all his talk of maintaining good journalism, this sounds like very, very bad journalism.
You know what, Bart Gingrich? We are here, and we are not going away. We are the nones, the nonbelievers, the atheists, agnostics, and those who would rather not bear a specific label. For us, it’s generally not about a cause. It’s not generally about sticking it to anyone, either. It’s about the freedom to live with authenticity. It is about the freedom to choose for ourselves. It is about breaking out of boxes and embracing something that feels wider and more profound. It is about our lives, our individuality, our inward selves.
We’re not trying to threaten you, Gingrich. We’re trying to exist. But it would seem it is our existence that threatens you.” Oh That Sarah Jones! Censoring the “Nones” – Love, Joy, Feminism

“So, while there is no Christian persecution in the United States to speak of, the myth persists, built upon centuries of mythology. It appears that if the right-wing Christian establishment can’t get their message across by reasoned arguments they will continue resorting to fear-based appeals to people’s emotions.” Persecuted? – Year Without God

“Don’t let your love or experiences get in the way of your theology! Good lord, if this is what religion is about, I want none of it. Religion should be experiential and it should be founded in love. Not whatever this is, this thing that tears apart families and denies transgender individuals access to their nephews or nieces in the name of “love.” Poor Jace, and poor kids. They all lose out.

And you know what may be the absolute worst part of this whole thing? Josh’s brother, Jace, is 19. Nineteen. I remember what it was to be that age and charting new waters against family objections.
My heart goes out to Jace, and I wish him all the best. As for this evangelical idea of “love,” I’m through.” So This Is Love – Love, Joy, Feminism

Equality

Harassment – Robot Hugs

“At a more subtle level, I saw women being judged for their dress sense, their looks, their figure, who they had or hadn’t slept with. I saw mothers judged for their choices to work, or not to work. When’s the last time any of us heard a man asked why he bothered having children if he was just going to keep on working?
Over and over again I saw that I was living in a world that was often hostile to women.” I don’t care if you like it (guest post by Marianne Elliott) – Justine Musk

“Get Back Into the Kitchen Where You Belong” – Laura Green Psychology

Beauty & Body Image

Body Positive Wisdom – Already Pretty

“I think there’s something impossibly messed-up about the idea that to be strong means being invulnerable. I despise the idea that because we’re feminists (or anti-racists, or LGBTQ+ activists, or..) that we must somehow not have internalised any of the crap we’re working against. Of course we internalise it. We live in a society that has made a science out of feeding it to us every damn day of our lives. It takes more than reading a few books and bonding with your femmo friends to dig through that. We still have to put the book down, put the phone down, and live our lives in the same spaces that screwed everything up in the first place.” Sometimes I Think I’m Ugly: Body image and making better feminisms – Consider the Teacosy

Self Esteem, Selfies, and Teenage Monsters – Reluctant Femme

“By being mindful of their words and actions, parents can help their children develop a healthier body image. Studies support the theory that the everyday messages we pass on to our children through our words can build them up and make them feel valued, or they can belittle, demean, or damage their self-worth. Higher levels of self-esteem are fostered when parents model qualities and values they want their children to have.” Body Image and Our Kids: Getting the Words Right – Adios Barbie

Inspirational

“Self-care is an essential part of balancing out an overwhelmed, stressed out lifestyle.   It gives us a chance to rest and recover from the wear and tear of normal life events, and it’s also a good reason to bring more fun into our lives.  Sometimes we wish that others would take care of us, but the reality is that if we’re not taking good care of ourselves then we can’t expect anyone else to do it for us.  I’ve put together a list of some of the secrets of self-care that I’ve discovered and hope you try them out!” 5 Secrets of Self-Care – Nicole Liloia

“No one is going to stick the landing on positive thinking every single time and that’s not goal. There isn’t an end result or “home free” square here – just side benefits like having more fun in your daily life, and having less holding you back from chasing down your dreams.
Positivity is a practice and a muscle, and in my mind it’s an everyday super power. Just like “being into fitness”, I’m still working on both.” Ready to break out of negative thinking? – Kyla Roma

“The problem of obesity and diet-related disease is not that we eat for comfort. It’s that we eat junk for comfort and overeat it when we do. The baby who turns to his mother’s breasts for food and comfort is getting a nutrient-dense source of life. When we turn to fast-food we are getting nothing. Hence the need to keep searching and keep eating. It’s like going back to your Ex for comfort knowing full-well he or she has let you down every single time. Time to replace the Ex, not swear off love altogether!
What if comfort food really did comfort? What if it really did feed our bodies at the same time soothe our souls? When you want to reach for the candy-bar, reaching for a piece of the darkest chocolate instead, takes intentionality. But, we can relearn and our taste-buds are trainable.” In Defense of Emotional Eating – Nourished Kitchen

“Muster the bravery to very lovingly, calmly say:
I loved you while I could. As best as I could. With all I could.
Thank you for you. When I had you.
Good luck.
Adieu.” How to Say Goodbye With Dignity – Danielle Dowling

Health

How to say no to sugar when you’re under stress – Growing Human(kind)ness

10 Reasons to Start Meditating – Nerdy Miss Wellness

FAQ: What Can I Do About Sugar and Carb Cravings? – Diane Sanfilippo

Recipes

Home made chorizo, paleo style – Meatified

Autoimmune Breakfast Sausages – Ditch the Wheat

Peppermint Coconut Snowball Cookies – Living Nutrition

Gingerbread Ice Cream – A Girl Worth Saving

Ginger Chews – Nutrition is Medicine

Paleo Breadsticks -Zen Belly

Nut-Free “KIND” Bars (GF) – The Nourishing Home

Paleo Turkey & Sweet Potato Patties – Once a Month Meals

Lacto-fermented Cucumber Relish – Salixisme

Olive Tapenade (gluten/vinegar free, paleo, vegan, autoimmune protocol) – Feed Me Rachel

Link Love (2014-08-17)

Thought-provoking

“But when we talk about “what women want”, we tend to assume that the stereotypes are universal – and usually based on upper-middle class WASPs. Even when breaking it down tends to aggregate all women into the broad stereotypes of their segment; all white women are X, all black women are Y, all Asian women are Z, all lesbians and queer women are W, all trans women are J, etc.  The assumptions about any one group whether in the macro (all women) or the micro (bisexual Five Nations women) erase the existence of an individual who doesn’t conform to that strict definition of womanhood; at best she becomes “the exception that proves the rule”” The Myth of What Women Want – Dr NerdLove

How to increase self control and become more successful – Barking Up the Wrong Tree

“One of the most vital components to creating a happy, healthy, and fulfilling relationship is to become a master at setting boundaries in relationships.  In simple terms, boundaries are the thing that keeps us separate from the other person.  The boundaries are what set the place between where you end and the other person begins.” 6 Steps to Setting Boundaries in Relationships – Jennifer Twardowski

Never Stop Learning: How Self-Education Creates a Bullet-Proof Career – 99U

“We often say that “intent is not magic,” but in some cases intent is actually important, and this is one of them. What Lambie, Cruikshank, and Stilwel did would be a crime regardless of their intent, but the fact that all three individuals were part of the Scottish Defense League, an offshoot of the English Defense League, and that one had previous arrests for religiously-motivated verbal abuse of a Pakistani shopkeeper suggests that the sentences they received were not in any sense an overreaction. This is not about some sort of silly prank—this is about calculated attempts to intimidate, harass, and terrorize Muslims, motivated by xenophobia and racism.” Can We Please Not Defend White Supremacists? – Love, Joy, Feminism

Religion

“I’ve watched evangelical friends and relatives travel around the world to help out at orphanages or build houses. Over time, I’ve begun to doubt the productivity of these sorts of trips and of short-term missions trips in general. Does it really do children in an orphanage any good to have foreigners from wealthy nations in and out of their facility? A week or two isn’t long enough for them to bond with a caregiver, but then I suppose that’s a good thing because if it was they’d be continually bonding to a caregiver only to have that caregiver ripped away. And as for building houses, wouldn’t that money be better spent paying local individuals to do the work? It would cost far less and would be a boon to the local economy.” Missionary Tourism – Love, Joy, Feminism

Equality

“Feminism is inherently good.  It’s not even close to perfect and still needs lots of work and sometimes it gets all fucked up and backward and awful but that doesn’t mean it’s not still worth fighting for.  Now go back and replace “Feminism” with “The human race”.  It works, right?.  That’s because feminists are made of human.  Men and women. ” Women Who are Ambivalent about Women Against Women Against Feminism – The Bloggess

“After all, what Dawkins said isn’t just wrong, it’s also harmful. How do you think my friend would experience Dawkins’ comment—my friend who was so traumatized by her rape by a friend that she has PTSD and is afraid to sleep for the nightmares? Creating a hierarchy of rape—categorizing it by harm—is not helpful for survivors. The harm caused by rape is so variable that telling victims that what they experienced was “worse” or “better” than what other victims experienced cannot help but complicate the healing process. It suggests that some suffering is more legitimate than other suffering.” Richard Dawkins and Rape Rape – Love, Joy, Feminism

5 Way Girls Are Taught to Avoid ‘Smart’ (And What We Can Do About It) – Everyday Feminism

“A gay friend saw me with the kids at Jazz at LACMA on Friday night, and apropos of nothing said, “Just so you know I didn’t wear any dresses when I was younger,” which is essentially saying, “Don’t worry. Your kid’s not gay like me.” This openly gay, married man was trying to make me feel better about a problem that didn’t exist. If my son is gay, so be it. Maybe he is. Maybe he’s not. Maybe he’ll be a cross-dresser. Maybe not. I have no control over any of it. All I can do is be supportive. ” My Son Wears Dresses and That’s Okay With Me – xoJane

“Of course, some rapes are more traumatic than others. However, what makes a rape very bad or even worse could include a thousand different factors. It is possible for judges to take some of these factors into account when sentencing convicted rapists; factors which demonstrate greater levels of violence or a very vulnerable victim, for example. Yet none of these factors include whether or not the victim happened to be on a date with their rapist.” Richard Dawkins and the logic of “date rape” – The F-Word

Inspirational

“Whenever we don’t make time to celebrate our achievements and honour what is meaningful to us, we’re not taking ourselves seriously
Whenever we shoo away positive feedback, mentally or literally, we’re not taking ourselves seriously.
Whenever we tell ourselves that our dreams are nice and all, but they’re unrealistic, we’re not taking ourselves seriously.
Whenever we don’t make time for self-care, we’re not taking ourselves seriously.” Why the World Needs You to Take Yourself Seriously – Becoming Who You Are

Difference Between Being Polite + Being Weak – Danielle Dowling

“You were brave. You remember, don’t you?
No? Okay. Here it is. You were brave:
when you stayed;
when you left;
when you said, no, but let’s try this;
when you said no, never;
when you said yes, thank you, more please;” For the moment (and it will come) that has you question your bravery – Tanya Geisler

5 Ways to Invest in Yourself (without spending a big pile of $$$ cash) – Heidi Taylor Coach

““I didn’t feel brave”
I’m not sure you ever do.
How often do you hear something like that? You’ll tell someone that they’ve done something brave- conquered something that scared them- and the first thing they do is deny that it felt the slightest bit brave to them. They were terrified the entire time.” About Bravery – Consider the Tea Cosy

What Self-Love Means: 20+ Ways to Be Good to Yourself – Tiny Buddha

“We put a great deal of attention on avoiding unhealthy romantic relationships, but platonic friendships can be just as damaging, just as toxic, even as abusive. Toxic friends can actually be harder to recognize. We tend to be axiomatic – we’d never be friends with abusers, therefore our friends aren’t abusive. We may excuse their behavior as “that’s just how Adam/Marie/Dan/Steve/Andrea is…”. We may choose to overlook the fact that our friends are toxic because of the sunk cost fallacy – we’ve known them for so long that we can’t really let them go.
But those toxic friends are destroying your self-esteem, ruining your happiness and in many cases actively holding you back. If you’re miserable, it may be time to look around and make sure you haven’t surrounded yourself with toxic friends.” Dump Your Toxic Friends – Dr NerdLove

Recipes

Slow Cooker Breakfast Meatloaf – Meatified

Hearty Spinach Beef Frittata – Stupid Easy Paleo

Cinnamon Clove Coconut Macaroons – Enjoy This Journey

Lemon Coconut Fudge – Foreverfit.tv

Baked Bananas – A Girl Worth Saving

Coconut Date “Balls” – Oh, The Things We’ll Make

Bakso (Indonesian Beef Balls) – The Domestic Man

Baked Eggs with Creamy Spinach – Mark’s Daily Apple

Fruit & Nut Grain-Free Bars – The Nourishing Home

Healthy Citrus Chicken Strip Recipe (Salad Topping) – Once A Month Meals

2014 August Twitterature

Welcome to Twitterature for August, been reading a lot of Irish literature and really enjoying it. As always linking up with the wonderful Moderns Mrs. Darcy.

angela's ashes

Angela’s Ashes: A Memoir by Frank McCourt: Powerful, sad yet humorous memoir of growing up in poverty with an alcoholic father in Catholic Ireland in the 1930’s and 40’s. Highly #recommended. (Full review here).

'Tis_(Frank_McCourt)_coverart

 

 

Tis: A Memoir by Frank McCourt: The sequel covering McCourt’s youthful years and how he eventually becomes a teacher.

 

teacher-man

 

Teacher Man: A Memoir by Frank McCourt: The last of McCourt’s memoirs, shorter and less to do with his life, but instead covering his teaching years and his approach to teaching.

 

the-gift-of-fear1-674x1024

The Gift of Fear by Gavin De Becker: Covering how to use your intuition + subconscious knowledge to the full extend to protect yourself, as well as those around you. #Recommended

 

how to fall in love

How to Fall in Love by Cecelia Ahern: How to fall in love (with life) is beautiful + sweet, with more meaning than you’d usually find in chick lit. #Recommended if you enjoy #ChickLit. (full review here)

 

birth-control-unlocked-e1380411265971-63719_186x186

Birth Control Unlocked by Stefani Ruper: Excellent overview of the different birth control options and their effect on your body.

 

 

What have you been reading lately?
As always I invite you to find me and connect with me on Goodreads.

Link Love (2014-08-09)

Thought-provoking

“Gideon Levy is the most hated man in Israel – and perhaps the most heroic. This “good Tel Aviv boy” – a sober, serious child of the Jewish state – has been shot at repeatedly by the Israeli Defence Force, been threatened with being “beaten to a pulp” on the country’s streets, and faced demands from government ministers that he be tightly monitored as “a security risk.” This is because he has done something very simple, and something that almost no other Israeli has done. Nearly every week for three decades, he has travelled to the Occupied Territories and described what he sees, plainly and without propaganda. “My modest mission,” he says, “is to prevent a situation in which many Israelis will be able to say, ‘We didn’t know.’” And for that, many people want him silenced.” Is Gideon Levy the most hated man in Israel or just the most heroic? – The Independent

Julian Treasure: How to speak so people want to listen – TED

“My parents taught us to be respectful, but they didn’t teach us to treat others with respect. The way my mother talked about prostitutes, women who live with their boyfriends, mothers who have careers and put their children in daycare—it was crystal clear that she had very little respect for any of these individuals. When she talked about gay people her tone was one of disgust. We were not in fact taught to respect others or their choices, different as they might be. Rather, we were taught both implicitly and explicitly not to respect them.” Just Who Is Teaching Respect? – Love, Joy, Feminism

How to Build a New Habit: This Is Your Strategy Guide – James Clear

“Plant-animal integration is, I realised, the norm in nature. It is how prairies and savannahs and all manner of ecosystems have been sustained for countless millennia. It is the most natural, ancient, and sustainable of systems — flora and fauna feeding one another in endless cycles. But our participation blurred boundaries I had taken for granted. If the squash and beans we grew were fed by local dairy farms, were we really eating just plants?” Tovar Cerulli: The hidden cost of vegetarianism – Aeon Magazine

7 Ways You Can Easily Increase Your Willpower – Barking Up the Wrong Tree

Religion

“Evangelicals often claim that teenage girls who dress “immodestly” have low self esteem or lack confidence. This is bullshit. Yes, sure, some of them may indeed have body image issues or low self esteem—but the same is true for many girls who dress “modestly” (my teenage self included). In other words, there isn’t a correlation, and dressing “modestly” is not a solution. Some teenage girls who dress “immodestly” have low self esteem; some teenage girls who dress “modestly” have low self esteem. In other words, “modesty” is not actually a solution to teenage girls’ self esteem problems or body image issues. What are some solutions? Encouraging them, listening to them, valuing their thoughts, trusting them, and giving them space to find themselves, to name a few.” “Modest Is Hottest” and Girls’ Self-Confidence – Love, Joy, Feminism

Equality

“Given the subject at hand, the irony of pointing out how this makes me feel is something I am aware of, so I won’t dwell on it too much, except to say that understanding you are sexist is actually really quite difficult just on a practical level. When I look around, I see the same things I’ve been doing and saying without thinking about them reflected back at me from every angle, and the fact casual sexism is so prevalent is an amazingly effective masking agent for the concept itself, especially among men. (I’m talking to men, of course. I know that our female readers – by virtue of being women – do not need me to point out that the average male is sexist.)” I am sexist – Eurogamer

Little Boxes: 6 Ways to Make Room for Bigger Truths – Everyday Feminism

“Professionalism is a funny term, because it masquerades as neutral despite being loaded with immense oppression. As a concept, professionalism is racist, sexist, homophobic, transphobic, classist, imperialist and so much more — and yet people act like professionalism is non-political. Bosses across the country constantly tell their employees to ‘act professionally’ without a second thought. Wear a garment that represents your non-Western culture to work? Your boss may tell you it’s unprofessional. Wear your hair in braids or dreadlocks instead of straightened? That’s probably unprofessional too. Wear shoes that are slightly scuffed because you can’t yet afford new ones? People may not think you’re being professional either.” Why I’m Genderqueer, Professional and Unafraid – Jacob Tobia – Huffington Post

“But the fact remains that as a woman, you can put something together from most men’s closets that is okay to walk down the street in. You can walk into a man’s clothing store and buy something for yourself. I work in a menswear store, and it happens all the time. No-one blinks an eye, we just find the last size small for the good lady, compliment her choice of colour and send her on her way.
As a woman, wearing something that is made for a guy is considered cool, edgy, interesting.
If a man walked into a womans store and asked for some help finding a womans dress for himself, the reaction would probably be very different. If he put together an outfit from a womans closet, he’d be unlikely to make it down the street without some backlash.
Men wearing something intended for women is most often seen as being ridiculous and demeaning.” Whether Guys Can Wear Dresses is a Litmus Test for Feminism – This Kind Choice

“I inevitably have to clarify that in this context, positivity and enthusiasm are not the same thing. The term is an attempt to address the individual and social place of sex and sexual identity. Sex-positivity boils down to a view that sex is a healthy and necessary part of human existence. It’s about acceptance and inclusion of the ways individuals choose to express themselves sexually.” Identifying As Sex Positive – Literally, Darling – Huffington Post

“Frankly? Provided the kids’ clothing is clean and activity-appropriate, I don’t care what gender my children’s clothing says. At the same time, I’m not going to use my children to make some sort of a political statement. I don’t put Bobby in dresses to make some sort of point, and when I visit the grandparents I leave his dresses at home. I would like to leave my children’s clothing choices up to them. Sally wears mostly dresses because that is what she prefers. That’s fine by me. Bobby has expressed no preference yet, and wears whatever we put on him. As that changes, I will respect his preferences. It’s not about using my children to satisfy some sort of agenda. It’s about removing the walls and letting them make their own choices.” Why I Put My Son in Dresses – Love, Joy, Feminism

Inspirational

The truth is: You may never feel fully ready.
You may not ever be entirely resolved about quitting your job or going back to school or leaving your relationship. You might not be entirely comfortable with your yearning, even when you cannot deny it’s existence. And, in thoughtfully probing your discomfort, it is possible – likely even – that you are making your indecision mean that there are holes in your desire or that you should wait until you feel absolutely certain before moving onto the next step.” What To Do When You Don’t Know What To Do – Mara Glatzel

“I wanted others to tell me I was on the right track. The more I did this, the emptier I felt inside.
Why? Because I was giving my power away. Instead of listening to my own guidance system, I was relying on someone else.” 10 Habits of Unhappy People (And How to Fix Them) – Tiny Buddha

“And if you repeatedly tell yourself you’re not loveable, you’ll start to believe it. You’ll retreat and prevent yourself from being open or accepting love and intimacy, making your negative script a self-fulfilling prophecy.
But lucky for us – it’s totally, 100% possible to stop that internal litany.” How to Stop Negative Thought-Patterns – Danielle Dowling

“When you practice an attitude of gratitude, you appreciate what you have, not envy what you lack. It means you’re a good steward. You nourish and exercise your body and mind, cherish and respect your spouse, love your dog, keep your home clean and orderly, encourage your children. If you water your garden, you’ll watch it grow.” Reframing Your Definition of Affluence – Mark’s Daily Apple

It argues: if you reveal that you don’t know something, then you’re really revealing that you know NOTHING. (This, by the way, is a heady blend of a couple of the 12 Lies of the Impostor Complex.)
So, we keep the shame hidden and we stay down. We stay quiet. And we stay a little less informed. A LOT less informed.”  Raise Your Hand – Tanya Geisler

Health

9 Signs You Need to Eat More Fat – Mark’s Daily Apple

The Push to Understand the Placenta – NY Times

Ten Alternatives to Caffeine to Get You Through the Day – Laura Green Psychology

Recipes

Guest Post: Kitchenspired, Balsamic Peach Chicken – Paleo Parents

Fermented Minced Garlic & Ginger – Neo-Homesteading

Sweet Potato Brownies – PaleOMG

Crockpot Paleo Thai Stew – Against All Grain

Pumpkin Cinnamon Muffins with Pumpkin Frosting – Civilized Caveman Cooking Creations

Pulled Pork & Jalapeno Frittata – Popular Paleo

Paleo Breakfast Sausage Scotch Eggs – Stupid Easy Paleo

Baked Pears with Cranberries – Primally Inspired

Creamy Leek & Salmon Soup – Meatified

Paleo Sweet Potato Chili – Savory Lotus

Meditation & Mindfulness Made Easy

You probably already know that meditation & mindfulness training is good for you. It helps you deal with stress, anxiety, teaches you how to stay present and focused and can even help you use your brain more effectively! If you’re anything like me, you’ve probably already tried to establish a meditation practice – maybe even more than once. But it can be difficult to teach yourself, or stay focused on your own. Classes are fantastic and I greatly recommend them, but they can also be pricey, time-consuming and impractical to get to.

The solution for me has been a meditation & mindfulness app with short meditations (from just a few minutes and up to 20 minutes) for a variety of situations; falling asleep, waking up, working on the Internet, sitting in nature etc. My go to app is Buddhify, currently only on iOS ($3), but will be released on Android as well this autumn – as well as an update with 41 new meditation tracks. One thing I love about Buddhify is their willingness to listen to feedback – the new tracks are based on what people already love and use the most, as well as suggestions from the users. Some of the new tracks are focused on dealing with difficult emotions, coping with pain and illness and meditation tracks for working around the house.

Guided meditations work really well for me, and I love that I can choose different kinds to suit my mood or the situation I’m in. Of course there are other excellent apps out there as well, Calm is free and great when you’re on your computer, and has an iOS app as well. Simply Being Guided Meditation (iOSAndroid), Headspace (online) and Walking Meditations (iOSAndroid) are other options.

How do you incorporate meditation & mindfulness training into your daily life? Do you have a favourite app that you use?

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