2017: A Year to Discover

2017The lights in my room were weak and dying. I suffered for so many months trying to cope with the lights in my room. I though I could make it, that I can manage. But in reality I can’t. So when it was time to move on, when there was a chance to change the lights, I grabbed it. Then my life was changed, it was never the same. A little overacting, but it’s true. With a brighter light, I discovered a lot of things in my room, how dirty it was and how it needs to be cleaned. That’s when I realized that, I, myself, needs a change in my own light to have a different perspective in life.

2016 has been really really rough. There were a lot of tragedies, pain, drastic changes, international conflicts, flop music releases, death of amazing people, the list will go on. If I can describe 2016 in one word: SCARY. On a personal level, 2016 is really scary, and tough at the same time. It was a year of heartaches, struggles, financial instability, it was definitely a crazy year. It was unforgettable, but it was also really painful.

Yes, just like the lights in my room, my hope in life was weak and dying. I felt like it was the end of me, like I was gonna be nowhere. I didn’t have a chance to grieve, life had to move on. Life was fast paced and I had to follow. But it was hard to walk to the path of life when your light is dim, I was getting lost, but it was also my own choice. I just wanted to be in a dark path because I just wanted to cover the pain, and maybe in the end I would be better. Still, I wasn’t. Hiding in the dark didn’t help. Then I decided to face my fears, the cause of my pain, and had the courage to change the “light” in my life. And there, I realized that during these period of hiding, I was ruined, and that I didn’t realize that there were a lot of blessings that went in my way. It was all a matter of opening my eyes and changing my perspective in life. Very clich√©, but it is true.

It was supposed to be a happy year. I was grabbing all the opportunities that came my way, all the blessings. But I forgot to enjoy what I have, to seize the moment. When I changed the lights, that’s when I saw how beautiful everything I had and that I have to start from scratch to fix everything. It was a poopy year, definitely, but we must not forget that there were a lot of blessings, too. There were amazing movies, beautiful music, wonderful changes in politics, powerful international connections and ties, eye-opening unity, there were a lot of things to be thankful for. Same goes with me, I still have school, I was able to save money, make new friends, received new “toys”, I was able to fulfill my goals this year. There were a lot of things to celebrate, and it is never too late.

The lights in my room are, still, gonna be weak and will die soon. But it’s always a matter of prevention, never dwell and let your body stay in a stagnant state. MOVE. 2016 was a year of opportunities, and I believe that 2017 is gonna be a year of discovery, a discovery of fruitfulness, success and amazing changes. 2016 shook our lives, and 2017 will show the results of all the hardwork we’ve done. Look forward and be ready, the previous year was definitely painful, but I say to you, there is still hope. 2017 is a year not just for a new calendar, rather for you to start over and leave all the bad things behind. Do not be afraid to begin again, be strong, and together we will move forward. HAPPY NEW YEAR! ūüôā

 

Amazing Stories Under The Tree

20160917_080558125_ios¬† ¬† ¬† ¬† ¬† ¬† Over a week ago, I saw this post in Instagram from the BJ Pascual promoting¬†“Stories Under The Tree”. I got curious and checked what it was, and I learned that it is a small gathering of like-minded people, who wants to be inspired, hosted by the Ito Kish! Yes, emphasis on “the” since these people are established and respected in their fields, and of course, I’m a fan of BJ, so I was really interested in joining.

¬† ¬† ¬† ¬† ¬† ¬† ¬† ¬†To be a part of it, you had to post a picture of yourself under a tree with a brief story about yourself in the caption, thus “Stories Under The Tree”, a bit cheeky, but hey, it’s a great idea! I was excited, scheduled a “photoshoot” in my university and composed a short but heartwarming caption so I can catch the attention of the organizers, so I can join. And alas, I received a notification, meaning it is one step closer in meeting BJ and Ito. Plus, I got to drag my cousin with me so I wouldn’t be alone, someone to accompany me and take my pictures. *wink*

¬† ¬† ¬† ¬† ¬† ¬† ¬† ¬†So the glorious day has come, September 17, and I had to miss my mom’s birthday just to be in this once in a lifetime event! Haha! I live in Caloocan and the event is in Ito Kish’s showroom in Makati. I was expecting a travel time of about an hour, yet I was all wrong and we were so late we missed Ito’s talk and BJ was already starting. Plus I left my ID at home so I had this dilemma if I was gonna be allowed inside. I thought my heart was gonna break but the kind-hearted personnel in the showroom let me in, it was a relief. I was thankful!

               Inside the showroom of Ito Kish, was a huge wonder! Amazing furniture, decors
and art! I wanted to be lost in amazement as I followed the trail to BJ Pascual’s voice, but I remembered I had to focus. And then, I saw Ito Kish and BJ Pascual. Sir Ito was sitting and listening to BJ and he offered me his chair. I was k20160917_085932365_iosinda shy, but he insisted me to sit down, he was really nice and hospitable. So then my gaze went to BJ and I was really starstruck. He was wearing a blue top, which looks good on him, he also constantly fixes his hair, and he can be seen under a “tree”-like plant, telling a “story under a tree”. It was all mixed emotions, I was late then Ito Kish gave me his seat and I’m listening now to BJ Pascual. It was surreal. People may say I’m overreacting, but in the state of my life, this rarely happens, and I was very excited. I see people recording videos, taking pictures of BJ, I see people listening attentively and nodding, and I see myself lost in this awesomeness happening in just a small amount of time. But then I had to focus and remember why I came, to be inspired.

¬† ¬† ¬† ¬† ¬† ¬† ¬† ¬†I’ll be honest, I wasn’t really able to get much details since we were late, but I remember BJ saying he started as a stylist and he worked first in Meg Magazine. I hope I’m right in this. He then told us that his works as a photographer started small, literally small pictures in a magazine, and that his grandparents would mock him why his part is so small. He’s cool, it was nice how he could laugh at his beginnings, makes me feel that he’s not ashamed that he started small. He then started telling us about the time he studied in New York, then went back to the Philippines to pursue his career. He said that he didn’t have a job and thought that he would have since he studied abroad, which one listener mentioned that it is a common misconception that it’s an advantage when you study abroad. Well yes it is, but it doesn’t determine that if you did study abroad it equates to success. International experiences are an edge, but aren’t a determinant of success.

¬† ¬† ¬† ¬† ¬† ¬† ¬† ¬†When he was trying to look for work, BJ said that his motto was “kailangan magpatunay“, that we all have to constantly prove ourselves. With this mantra, he started being referred to different publications and assisting other photographers. He had a sturdy background, but along the way, he was still learning, and this became a good foundation for him, endless learning. Then he said that his big break was¬†the¬†series of small steps he had, it wasn’t easy for him but his small successes mattered for him, as if each of them¬†was really his big break. These small steps defined him, molded him and made him the BJ Pascual he is today.

¬† ¬† ¬† ¬† ¬† ¬† ¬† ¬†To end his talk, he told us “…if an opportunity is given , even if you are not ready, make yourself ready”. It struck me a lot. I feel that this year is a year of endless opportunities, and yes there are times that I feel that I am not ready or that it might not be for me, but I learned that I should just grab opportunities as much as I can because you will never know what you’re missing until you try. BJ was driven, he had a goal, small goals actually. And when he will look back, he will see that those small goals helped him achieve big. So in conclusion, he said 2 important things in being driven, start with small goals and have pessimistic grandparents, they will definitely drive you to be in greater things.

20160917_085159009_ios¬† ¬† ¬† ¬† ¬† ¬† ¬† ¬†After his talk, we were given a chance to ask questions. I was rattled because I wanted to ask a lot but we have so little time. I forgot to listen to the first guy who asked since I am busy composing a question, where I can really benefit a lot. They were saying complex and technical stuff that I am not familiar. When it was my chance, I raised my hand. I told BJ “hello”, and I smiled at him, he smiled back. I told him I came to be inspired, so I asked him, when was the last time he felt that he wanted to give up. Well, it seems I caught him off guard and he though “wow”, and everyone laughed, as BJ was surprised and thinking hard. But he mentioned that the first time was when he came back from New York and he didn’t have a job, then¬†it fueled him to do better, but he doesn’t really remember the last time he wanted to give up, but he normally thinks of it¬†especially when he’s working on something really hard where he doesn’t get enough sleep. He said¬†his friends keep him motivated and accompanies him while working, which is something similar with me I guess. Haha. He also said that at the point of giving up, he just thinks of people who sees him as an inspiration and gives him the drive to¬†strive harder. Then I asked a follow-up just to make the most of the time I have with him. I asked him, “which would you prefer, stress or pressure?”, he then told me , with a smile, that I can be a showbiz reporter with my questions (haha), and everybody laughed. He answered “pressure with stress”, getting more laughs from the crowd, he said¬†that he works under pressure but with stress added, he works the best! I was amazed actually because I would just prefer stress, but with this guy with a lot of experience, this is definitely an eye-opener.

¬† ¬† ¬† ¬† ¬† ¬† ¬† ¬†He also discussed issues with using photoshop, that it is a common misconception that photo editing is a taboo. But he intelligently answered that photo editing is more than just removing flaws, rather it is for photo enhancement, lighting and coloring, and that he makes most of the edits in his camera. He was also asked who does he wanna work with¬†to say that he finally made it, that he can say “This is it!”. He excitedly answered Vogue, may it be Vogue Korea or Vogue Brazil. He said that it is his dream, or every photographer’s dream. I’d be looking forward to that, and with the path he’s taking, I’m sure it’s gonna happen real real soon.

20160917_090938143_ios¬† ¬† ¬† ¬† ¬† ¬† ¬† ¬†As much as I want it to last forever, the talk ended and sir Ito Kish gave us a chance to have a photo-op with him. People were rushing to him asking to take pictures and sign their magazines. It was a bummer I didn’t bring anything to have it signed by BJ. People were energetic and excited to get a close interaction with him, I was, too. I see he’s already tired but he’s still eager to accommodate everyone. Grace under pressure (with stress) I suppose. When it was my chance, we shook hands and I introduced myself hoping he would remember me (I wish he did), with a lasting impression. We took full body pictures and selfies, with him maneuvering my phone. I also got a chance to have him make a video greeting for my mom’s birthday (so I can make it up to my mom for being absent haha). I also had the chance to take a picture with Ito Kish, he was really kind and gentle.

¬† ¬† ¬† ¬† ¬† ¬† ¬† ¬†It was heartbreaking to leave the showroom. I met amazing people, heard inspiring stories and made memories I won’t forget. I’m looking forward for a second part, I will make sure that I will make it and I’ll be on time. I’m also hoping BJ Pascual would remember me, in spite of meting a lot¬†of people ¬†everyday, and of course Mr. Ito Kish. And yes, I also look forward to use the knowledge I acquired to be successful just like them, that in any bumps in life I shouldn’t give up easily, rather I should find that driving force, the core that will support and inspire me up to my last breath, so that I could then tell my story under the tree.

Confidence.Limitless.

Confidence
– Belief in oneself and one’s powers or abilities; self-confidence; self-reliance; assurance (thesaurus.com)

I was watching the video above somewhere in the internet, and something struck me, is it really that hard to reveal yourself to the public? I was really surprised that behind perfection, there is imperfection hiding, and that there is a story and a reason behind it. I think as a human, we have been really hard on ourselves trying to fit in, instead of living our lives normally and how it should be, at the same time, we are being hard to others that they are¬†humiliated with their real identity and they just want¬†to become somebody else, i don’t really think that’s right. Is it really acceptance that we want, or is it just we want to be like everybody else and be loved? What I think is that we just have to put our heads high and be confident, and show people that imperfection is the only perfection the world has. I share to you the¬†4mula of Confidence.

Accept yourself
Sometimes we feel disgusted on how we look every morning when we wake up, or how we compare ourselves to others, or maybe to how we look or dress when we go out. We always tend to disappoint and belittle ourselves when we don’t fit in our society. So what’s the first step of gaining confidence? Accept that you are imperfect, accept that you don’t have what others have, accept the fact that you are different. Just face the fact that you can never be somebody else and you just have to accept and appreciate what you have. May it be having a dark complexion, big eyes, acne problem, hairy arms, short height, or whatever imperfection you may have, accept that it is not something to be embarrassed of. If you hate yourself because of these imperfections, then what is our definition of beauty anyway? Is it being accepted by the society? Is it following the trend? I really don’t think so. If the world loves what is beautiful, don’t you think it’s time to love yourself more and stop ¬†pretending? Trying to fit in is like telling a banana to become an apple to be accepted by apple lovers, but this is not how things work. Love yourself, appreciate what you have and make it an asset. Loving yourself is beautiful, and we don’t need the world’s approval. Imperfection is not contagious, but being judgmental is deadly.

Reveal yourself
Let’s say people admire you because of how beautiful or handsome you look, or how amazing you do your hair, or maybe how expensive your gadgets are, but then one day, these things disappear, do you think people will still be there for you? Isn’t it nice to live in a world where people love you because of who you are, and that you don’t have to please them because they love what they see? How can they admire¬†you if you won’t even give yourself a chance? It’s time to give yourself a break and stop trying to punish¬†your self, because it’s time to be true and to show people who you really are. It’s time to wipe whatever excess baggage you have from yourself that’s keeping you away from your true identity. Yes people judge everyday, people insult what is ugly and that is a fact, but so what? They may insult you but it wouldn’t hurt if you know to yourself that it’s true. Everyone has something to cover up and we can’t hide it forever, in time it will surface. There are things that we are embarassed of, but once we reveal our true self, it will not be embarrassing anymore, because everyone has their own secret and imperfection after all.

Inspire others
Once you have accepted yourself and revealed your true identity, you will become a walking testimony of confidence. It is good to inspire people to go out of the dark and show what they have. It feels so right to let people know that they are not alone and that it is good to flaunt your flaw, because everyone has their own. Share your experiences, and who knows, people could relate to whatever you have experienced before and it could be their stepping stone to make changes in their lives. The reality is, we hide to be accepted, it is true. But in this modern time, everyone is entitled to their own rights and I think it’s time to show people that¬†there’s something wrong with everybody and that we are not ashamed to share our imperfections. Everyone has their story, and we need to reach out to them, because who knows, we might be too late if we fail to let people know that it is not bad to have flaws. It is not necessary to hide, it is not necessary to undergo surgery to be perfect or to look like a model, it is not necessary to be loved by everyone, what’s important is you have yourself, someone or maybe a group of friends who love and support you, and instead of changing, why don’t we help ourselves improve, not for approval but for confidence. It is always the intention that matters. Don’t fool yourself, and don’t try to be like the rest of the world. Instead, go against the flow and see how much you can make a difference.

Improve yourself
Always remember that confidence does not come from altering something in your life, rather it comes from what you have. You just need¬†to improve whatever you have in life, you don’t need¬†to ask or to have what other’s have. Everyone is unique and is given what they need in life. Be a living testimony and start living a new life, a life of acceptance and self-love. Branded clothes, make-up, Photoshop or even gadgets may give you the satisfaction in life, but remember, that’s temporary. “Perfection” fades, but your flaws will always be there, and anything covered up will reveal itself, no secret is hidden forever. Instead of running away from it, live with it and try to live a better life with imperfection. Learn to improve yourself and use your flaws to your advantage. Always remember, what society¬†wants you to be shouldn’t be your goal in life, you will only hurt yourself. Instead, live a life on improving yourself and that’s how you can discover inner confidence to face the society.

Yes, it is definitely hard to be different, but everyone has their own secret, their own fears and their own imperfections. It is not bad to have a flaw- may it be fat, stretch marks, wrinkles or falling hair, -we are humans and we were born imperfect. The only thing that’s constant in this world is change, you might think you are perfect now but in time it will change, your perfection will be erased and you will become what you were afraid of. Instead of being afraid, embrace your imperfection and focus on improving yourself to develop confidence. It is never too late to start over. Just remember, you were given flaws not to remove them but rather to live with it, and live a better life with it. Perfection does not exist, and if it does exist, then we wouldn’t exist at all.

New Year’s Resolution Accomplished.Limitless.

Every year, and every time we celebrate the start of another year, we always opt to create a New Year’s Resolution. But do we really know what it is, and do we create the right one?

According to Dirctionary.com, a “Resolution” is a decision or determination, a resolve, or to make a firm decision to do something. Simply saying that a New Year’s Resolution is a promise to yourself, to change something. It is a big decision that you choose, to change for the whole year. I often hear people mistaking their Resolutions as wishes. Wishes are done during Christmas, and I highly recommend doing Resolutions during New Year. It’s a new start, it is for a fresh beginning.

Why make a New Year’s Resolution? Well, I do not recommend doing a resolution because almost everyone tried to do it, or because it is a trend, it’s because I believe change starts with you, and you have to be the change you want the world to be. Fulfilling your resolution is setting a good example to people, and you inspire others to be determined to continue what they have started. A resolution is not just a decision to change yourself, but rather an action that causes chain reaction to affect one person to another.

Instead of saying¬†“I wish to have a better body this year”, convince yourself by saying¬†“I will start a good diet and workout to have a better body this year”. Every resolution requires action, so don’t just say it for statement, but rather live to it, make it happen. Don’t just stand there and imagine yourself, be the change! You already have this goal, and the next step is to move forward. Start trying, and after trying that’s when you put more effort. And after adding a bucketful of effort, that’s when you enjoy and love what you are doing and you won’t realize, another year has passed and you survived your resolution.¬†So how do we accomplish these Resolutions? Here is my 4mula to Accomplish your New Year’s Resolutions:

  • Observe

Remind yourself that you have a New Year’s resolution, you should know what it is, its grounds and its scope. For example, if you want to start eating healthy, you should evaluate your everyday food. If you have someone cooking for you, talk to them and let them know. If you want to start wakig up early, know your sleeping patterns first, observe your alarm, too, and your body’s activity everytime you wake up to know how to react to it. The magic word is to “Observe”. Yes, it really is hard to accomplish this, but you have to be determined, and be¬†familiarized to what should be done everyday to finish the task.

  • Focus

The second step is by doing it little by little. You should never give up. Finish what you have started. Prove them that they’re wrong and that you can be the change you want the world to be. Never let others pull you down, and never let temptation get you out of the way. Focus is the magic word. Always think about what it feels to achieve your goal, how it feels to see how you have changed from day 1 to day 365, imagine how rewarding it is that you’ve come a long way and you have succeeded. Don’t let the chance pass by and let the bad ones win.

  • Enjoy

Reward yourself. Enjoy is the magoc word. Learn to have fun and love what you are doing. If you think you deserve a little treat, do so. Do not deprive yourself, remember it’s like being in school and receiving a treat everytime you’re doing it right. It also brings a positive vibe when you know you are enjoying what you are doing.

  • Inspire

Tell others your testimony. Let people know you have a goal and you are having an adventure. The magic word is to inspire. Show them how determined you are to inspire them and to let them know that a Resolution is something everyone needs. Show them that a small Resolution won’t hurt and it is rewarding to accomplish it from the start to end. Spread the word, who knows, you might inspire someone with your determination and be the eye-opener your friends or your family needs. Your best testimony is your life over-all that has been changed by your resolution.

What’s amazing about resolutions is the fact that once you passed the year accomplishing your goal, it doesn’t end there. Your resolution starts to become a part of your system, of your everyday life and you don’t just stop because you’ve proven something, rather you continue doing it because it’s already a part of your everyday regimen. And when the year ends, you start to plan another resolution, another goal to make your life better and more meaningful. Isn’t it exciting to see yourself better after accomplishing all those resolutions? It’s like you are playing a video game and you have accomplished the objectives you need to pass, and you are off to the next one to level up.

So don’t ever miss the chance to try to have a New Year’s Resolution, it’s exciting. It’s like adding a simple spice to your life, an adventure to try or a simple mission to make a simple change. A resolution can be personal, it can be environmental or even it can be something small like starting to go to school/work early or starting to go to bed early. The first days/weeks might be hard, and there might be times that you will break them, but always remember that it’s okay, and there’s always tomorrow. Never give up. And let them know that a small resolution is not painful. It’s not yet too late to have one, anyway a resolution can be started any day of the year. If you have started from day 1 then that’s good, but for those out there who haven’t started yet, you can still do so, now is the perfect time. Never be afraid, start the change now and be the inspiration this world needs. You never know what your small deed can do to make this world a better place.

My resolution is to stop being judgmental and always giving the benefit of the doubt about others, haw about you?Have you made yours? ūüėČ

My Best and Worst of 2013.Limitless.

59c297012013 has been really really rough. I don’t know if everyone had the same feeling, but 2013 was really hard on me, especially in financial terms. I always had this feeling that “13” is really not a good number for me, and it brought a lot of misfortunes for me this year. But ultimately there’s a lot to thank for, so other than remembering the bad things, let’s also remember that there are a lot of good things and blessings that happened this year. I believe that no matter how bad a day, month or year is, there’s still a lot to thank for. So below, let me share to you my Best and Worst of 2013:

The Worst of 2014:

10. My phone got stolen

9. There was a rat in my room Рand it was there for merely 2 months

8.¬†I had¬†“Pigsa”¬†(Boils)

7. I lost my bestfriend C2 Рit was really bad, I was really bored and sad

6. Sleeping problems Рspecifically Sleep Paralysis

5. Weight gain Рstill working on this

4. Stress – too much stress at work! Almost killed me

3.  Wrong decisions Рmistakes that I did and I know I will learn from it

2. Financial problems

1. Lost my job – I was really planning to leave work before the year ends, but not this early

Now it’s time for The Best of 2013:

10. Had my first iPhone Рbut then got stolen by late October

9. Curled locks Рso I had my hair permanently curled this year, and it was fun

8. Good Movies Рthere were a lot of good movies to enjoy this year! (e.g. The Purge, Insidious 2)

7.¬†Lost my job¬†– yeah it was bad, but at least I got to rest for a while now ūüėÄ

6. Work B**ch Р need I say more? Britney slayed me with this song and video, it made me cry

5. New-found friends & reunion with old friends

4. Weeklong Birthday celebration Рa dream come true this year

3. Reunion with my bestfriend C2

2.¬†Happy Lovelife – what more can I say, I am happy and contented ūüôā

1. Happy Christmas Рhappy and healthy family with a lot of gifts

There really is a lot to regret this year, totally. But we must not forget that there are also a lot to thank for, too. I always do this every year, since I was a teenager, to remind myself that, yes, it’s true that every year is cruel, but we always have to slap them with the good ones that happened so that the bad ones will be overshadowed. It was truly a challenging year. Coming from financial problems, to rodent problems, to losing my job and still having a happy heart and family. The best thing that I can think of is that my family and friends are alive and healthy, and that to me is the ultimate gift that I can have every year.

I believe that next year is the year of Positivity and Progression. It will be the year that we will stand up from the fall that we had this year. 2014 is gonna be a big year and I am really looking forward to more wonderful things to happen. Prosperity is really not the key to happiness, rather it’s the contentment and the relief to see your family and friends safe. Let’s be safe this coming new year and I hope that everyone will be blessed and progress with their lives this coming 2014.

Happy New Year!

Limitless Album Review: Britney Jean

britney-jean-album-cover-britney-spears-35920943-960-951-1385498535Britney Spears released her newest album, “Britney Jean”, December 3rd worldwide. Honestly it did not do pretty well in the charts, but with an album with no performance and much promo, I’m very much okay with how Britney Jean is doing. It’s selling without much promotion. Well, at the end of the day, music will prevail over crazy antics so I guess I can say this is another masterpiece by the legendary Miss Britney Spears.

Upon reading some information, it was noted that the concept of the album is about living the pop life, and Britney being the superstar. This is her most personal album, as she claims, and I can say every track has a special meaning in Britney’s heart. The album gave me much surprises and I’m very much satisfied with it. Britney Jean is a biographical album, it showcases songs about living life, experiencing hardships and learning to enjoy every moment. It’s a simple concept but very relatable. Every song makes a mark, and I must say fits perfectly with the other songs, they compliment each other. I rate the album 4.5 stars out of 5, and below I have listed the songs ranked from the ones I least like to the song I like the most:

four_half-stars_0

  • Hold On Tight

Hold On Tight was never a favorite for me, but it’s not that bad. It’s a good ballad, however I’m really not a fan of ballads so I don’t appreciate it much. But as a ballad, I can say It is a very emotional song for Britney and positive in a way. It’s very haunting and at the same time brings hope that one day you will be alright after all the pain. It teaches you how to embrace pain, and that every night will never be the same and it will be a long journey so you better “Hold On Tight” and be strong. This is Britney being a friend, and it’s very good. A song that can accompany you during your hardships.

  • Perfume (The Dreaming Mix)

It’s cool that there is a remix of one of her current songs, but I don’t think It’s necessary to put this in the album. The only good thing I see in this track is the haunting vibe it has and how amazing Britney’s vocals are in this mix, there’s no other voice heard other than hers so she really owned this track, making me feel more the emotion portrayed by the song. You can feel pain, but other than that, I still don’t think the remix was necessary on the album.

  • Chillin’ With You feat. Jamie Lynn

This is a fun track. At first listen, it sounds weird, but when you have played this a lot, you will understand why this track is included in the album. The track features Britney’s sister, Jamie Lynn, and they sound good together. Literally, the song is about chillin’ with your loved ones, probably at home, at the club, in a mall or at a beach. Britney wanted to jive Country music with Pop, that’s where this weird track came from, but I can say they did well and this has a potential to become a chillin’ anthem. Not really a great track but it;s something you can listen to while “Chillin’ With You”.

  • Don’t Cry

I can say that this is Britney’s best ballad since 2005’s Someday (I Will Understand). It’s very emotional and haunting. The perfect ballad that I’ve been waiting from Britney. Probably if I’m heartbroken and I listened to this, I’d cry. When you listen to the song, you can really feel the pain. It’s like it’s Britney reflection of all the pain she’s been through throughout the years. Britney talks about letting go and moving on, and being ¬†strong by not crying. Most fans not just relate it to love but with Britney’s relationship with the fans. They think that wen Britney leaves the industry, this will be her song to the fans, thus saying when she leaves, “Don’t Cry”.

  • Brightest Morning Star

Britney said this song is about God, and on the first listen, I can definitely feel the faith and Britney’s sincerity in singing this song. What I’m happy about it, is that this is Britney’s first Christian song, or a genuine song about God. I don’t know Britney’s actions in showing her faith, but with this song I can say God really has made a big impact in her life and that she believes He is her guide by “leading the way” and being her “Brightest Morning Star” in the darkness.

  • Body Ache

Body Ache made me interested upon hearing the track title. On my first listen to the song, I wasn’t disappointed. It was like Scream & Shout’s daughter. But after a few listens I grew tired of Body Ache and I really don’t know why. It lacks something, probably a crazy verse or break, but it’s still one of the great tracks of the album. Britney stated that the song is about her love of dancing, until her “Body Ache”. I’d still prefer her dancing till the world ends, but Body Ache will do for now, it’s a good dance song, not perfect but it will do.

  • Perfume

britney-spears-perfumeSame with Don’t Cry, Perfume is very emotional. At first listen I can say I can definitely relate with this song. The moment you become paranoid and afraid with the people surrounding your partner, thinking that they might do something to catch your partner’s attention, and to that point you just want to spray a lot of your perfume to let them know that your partner is taken, that it’s your territory. I see Perfume as a track on a musical play or movie and might do well as its theme song. Britney’s voice really fits the song, she’s not really belting out but her voice is enough to interpret the pain and emotion needed. It’s a sad song, it’s about being vulnerable, but at the end of the day, this song will want you to win.

  • Passenger

This kind of song is something I haven’t heard for a while from Britney. It’s like Brave New Girl 2.0, Britney’s song from In The Zone, but a mature perspective. It’s about getting into a relationship and letting your partner drive the journey with you, and you being the “Passenger” just enjoying the ride. It also emphasizes trying new stuff with your partner and having an adventure, that there might be twists and turns but still you trust your partner and enjoy every second of the ride. Well yeah, love is a long journey, definitely a long ride and Britney wants us to break free, take risks and move out of our comfort zone, and make the most out of love.

  • Till It’s Gone

“You never know what you got Till It’s Gone”, the exact message of the song. Perfect melody, perfect lyrics, perfect production, I can say this is one of the best tracks of the album. Her voice is so powerful and encouraging that you want to dance everytime she drops the word “Gone”. I like how clever the lyrics are, really fun and has a lot of impact. A song about breakup, or about losing something and interpreted in a good way. Britney sings about how she tried to change things to keep what she has, but the only thing constant in the world is change, and since it’s inevitable, she makes us understand that we have to realize what we have “Till It’s Gone”.

  • It Should Be Easy feat. will.i.am

will.i.am and Britney said the song is about love being easy and not being complicated, and that it’s our nature to complicate things, making love so uneasy. Britney sings about being so in love and rates her love “a million billion”. Another clever track made by Brit and will.i.am, it’s like the love child of Scream & Shout and Work B**ch, very dance-able and at the same time the meaning is very powerful. The beat is sick, and I must admit I can’t help but do the robot dance while singing this song. Britney sings she can’t lose the one she loves, and will.i.am responds that “It Should Be Easy”, by not making love complicated, simple as that. I can’t say that it is a love song, more like an advice of a friend to a friend, and Britney shares this to us, a small friendly advice.

  • Now That I Found You

One of the best bonus tracks Britney has in her catalog after Femme Fatale’s Scary.¬†Not your typical love song but will definitely touch your hearts, the same it touched mine. Britney sings that she was lost and hopeless until she found her one true love. She adds that she has seen the light and was blown away by love. I don’t personally know Britney, but with this track you can see Britney is also crazy in love. She’s just like one of us, she gets madly in love and this song is a celebration of how wonderful love feels and how love can change a dull world into a world full of color and music. Truly, love is something to celebrate for “Now That I Found You”.

  • Tik Tik Boom feat. T.I.

This track is a very powerful urban song. Britney is back with her sexy, sultry voice and sings that she wants someone to make her explode, like a bomb! Yeah, the song’s meaning is open for interpretation, but definitely a cool track and I can say a classic, sexy Britney. The additional of T.I. is a big surprise. I remember they were competing back in 2008 for the number one spot with Britney’s Womanizer, and it’s unbelievable that they are now on a track together. T.I. raps about treating someone like an animal, maybe that’s how he makes her explode, if you know what I mean. On the other hand, Britney sings she wants to scream his name until she “Tik Tik Boom”, not too slow, not too quick but probably a great way to explode.

  • Work B**ch

BRITNEY-WORK-BITCH-SINGLE-COVER1Now I understand why this is the lead single, it’s such a wonderfully crafted song. It stands out in the album, definitely one of a kind. It’s actually a hard choice between Work B**ch and Alien, but I had to say Work B**ch is my second favorite. Britney sings about working hard to have everything she has, luxury cars, fabulous parties, a mansion and a bangin’ body. I can say definitely the song is something personal to her as she likes to work hard and she earns to make a living. She wants people to know that anything she has now is a fruit of her hardwork throughout the years, and hardwork is always rewarded. Britney also sings that people might bring you down, but she reminds us to continue to work hard, we might not please everyone but at the end of the day, you still manage your own life and we better show ’em how to “Work B**ch”.

  • Alien

And finally, I can say the best track of the album, Alien. Upon my first listen, I already felt connected to the song. The haunting melody and Britney’s amazing vocals makes it the best track of the album. Also the best choice on choosing this song to start her tracklist. Britney said the song is about sometimes feeling alone in the crowd, and that we sometimes isolate ourselves. And I relate so much with what she is saying. I can definitely tell that this is the story of my life. The feeling that you want to be alone at times and you just want to have that quiet time and be with yourself. Britney sings the stars accompany her and that she is not alone. Again, Britney as a friend tells us that no man is still an island and somewhere out there, someone will make us feel that we are not alone. You might be a stranger in the crowd, but always remember that you belong in this universe, and just like an “Alien”, you are not alone.

It was hard choosing and ranking the tracks, they are all perfect in their own way and they have their own characteristics. It’s like the album is Britney herself and each song is a character or personality she has and she tells us the story of her life. I love this album and I know this album will go far and will still break records. I have faith in Britney as how she has faith in us, her fans. She dedicated this album to us and wanted to share a piece of her, but for me it’s not just a piece but rather it’s her life contained in this record. Truly a story to be told. As Britney said in Work B**ch, spread the word, tell somebody in your town that a wonderful life story has been released. It may not be a book, but Britney speaks through music, and this music that she brought is something that I’ve waited for all these years. And I can say, with this record, I can just sit back, drink red wine and juts chill enjoying every phase, every track and every melody. Good job, Britney Jean!

Stress-balls Aren’t Enough.Limitless.

Have you ever felt troubled? That feeling that you just wanted to lie down, close your eyes and rest? That moment you wanted to step out and go somewhere silent, a place where no one is there and you wanted to have this quality time with yourself? Have you ever felt that you just wanted to let all the negative emotions out of your chest?

 

If yes, then I’ll tell you this my friend, you are stressed.

 

Stress is truly inevitable. It happens at work, school, when you are in a relationship, with your friends, at home, even to yourself. It’s sad to say, stress is everywhere. You my run and hide, but stress will always find its way to haunt you and consume you. But I am not saying that you can’t get out of stress, there’s still a lot of ways to kill stress. But before you remove it, you must know how it started and why it is haunting you.

 

It’s easy to know what you are being stressed about, unless you are that blind to know. But, if you really are confused, just think of the very first thing that troubles you. Or maybe, assess yourself, and think what has caused you to be sad, scared or hurtful lately? Unfortunately, stress is very fatal. Not that it’s contagious, but fatal in a sense that if you can’t stop it or contain it, it will consume you, your sanity and your life as a whole. You have to be alert and motivate yourself that you have to get out of this awful situation. Always tell yourself that you deserve better and you shouldn’t settle for anything less. Always tell yourself that you are a great person and there are better things to do than succumb yourself to whatever stress is doing to you. Stress is an enemy, and it is a test that you must overcome to become someone better, stronger and wiser. Once you determined what stresses you, that will be your first line of defense, your advantage to becoming stress-free. And by then, we can follow what I call the¬†4mula for a Stress-free Life. Throw away those stress-balls because they are so yesterday, because just like virus and bacteria, stress mutates and becomes strong. Again, not that they are contagious, but they also go with the flow of your life and follows you, it grows and moves on as you grow and move on. So you better level up and take note of these small advice I have for you:

 

4mula for a Stress-free Life
  • Laugh Out Loud
When you are stressed you forget to smile, and to laugh. Always remember that you have friends and family that you can talk to and laugh with. They will always have this joke, everyday, every moment that will make you burst your laughter and will help you ease the pain you feel. As they say, “No man is an island”.¬†They might not help you ultimately to what you are going through, but what’s important is that you don’t feel alone and you have these people to run to when you need company. And another thing,¬†“Laughter is the best medicine”. It may not heal physical pain, but at least it will give you this certain healing power for your inner pain, wherever that is, and it’s very magical. Smile, that’s one thing and you should not fake it. Always remember that there are more people who experience worse than what you are experiencing. There is always a reason to smile, laugh and celebrate what you have.
  • Music

Have you ever experienced that moment you listened to a song and you felt goosebumps, not because of the bass but because it’s literally the story of your life and it captured what you are actually feeling at the moment? I always feel that! And if laughing hard isn’t enough, then it’s time to sit down, put those earphones on and listen to some music that will definitely break your heart and make them whole again. I always tell my friends that if you feel like crying, let it all out and don’t fill your heart with negative emotions because when it explodes, it’s gonna be bad. Let a certain song break you into pieces because I believe that at the end of each song, they will mend your broken heart and will put back all the pieces again and make you feel better. It’s better to let go of something heavy rather than holding on to it, right? Let the melody, rhythm and lyrics of a certain song take you away and it will do the rest for you. Just feel every word and every sound, and I tell you, every teardrop and chill you feel will be worth it.
  • Treat Yourself

It’s simple as going out. Go out of your comfort zone and see the world. What’s wrong with stressed people is that we always want to just lie down and have a rest. That’s not enough. We should go somewhere we will enjoy and have a good time. Eat a lot, eat ice cream, chocolates, or even watch a movie, go to a carnival, play golf, badminton, do weird stuff, something you haven’t tried. Explore. Your confined space is your cage from freedom. You have to clear your mind rather than staring dull walls. The brightness of the sun and that feeling of company with people outside is the best way to free your mind and feel that the world is always there and will always be your ground when you are about to fall. There is always somewhere outside that will catch your attention and make you feel better. It’s not all about spending, there are still things you can do without money. You can have a simple walk in the park, you can sit by the bay and watch sunrise or sunset or you can visit a friend and have a good time. Don’t be a prisoner, be an explorer.
  • Take a Break

If after doing all the above and stress is still that strong, then, my friend, I believe you need to take a break. You need space to whatever you are experiencing. You have to go somewhere you can think deeply and have this peace of mind you can’t get elsewhere. Sometimes you just have to leave everything and take a break from the outrage of the world. It might be somewhere in your hometown, or probably in your mom’s arms, I don’t know what you consider as your paradise, but you have to go there, recharge and be back to face the world full force. Make the most out of it when you take a break. The risk should be worth it. After all, it’s called a “risk” because you have to lose some, to get some, right?

 

And if everything else fails, remember that your ultimate power is still prayer. Believe in the protection of His hands, and He will definitely heal all wounds that the world can’t mend. At the end of the day, love is still the cure, it might not be the love of your job, partner, or whatever, but at least His love is eternal and He will never leave you. He will teach you something and you should learn from it.¬†Truly, stress is a serious matter and with this, I can say, stress-balls aren’t really enough.

 

It all sums up to be of what your perspective to the world is. It’s a matter of thinking if the glass is half empty or half full. Be positive. Optimism is another weapon in facing the world. The world has turned out to be a big place full of negativity and you have to fight it with all the positivity you have. Survive this world full of criticism and pain. As you grow old, you will start to see the real face of the world. It’s up to you if you will grow as a weak man and be consumed by the madness or you can choose to be strong and be brave enough to show the world you are different and fight what’s on your way to achieve your goals. Whatever’s on your way, it’s always your choice to turn back and walk away or to step forward and fight for what the future has for you.

 

Just remember one thing, either of the choices you make will still hurt. But take note, there will be a choice where pain can repeat over and over, and another one that will help stop the pain and live anew. If I were you, it will be very risky but choose the second option. Better stop the pain now rather than living a life full of pain. A life of pain is equivalent to a lifeless existence. Live life to the fullest and never cease the chance to have a better future. Don’t prevent yourself from growing, because life is just like a plant, invest to what will make your future fruitful and reap the success you deserve from all the patience and risk you have devoted yourself to.