It’s my birth month! I’m officially 23-years-old! I don’t know what that means exactly however I know I’m getting older by the second.

2018 feels like it’s been going on for three years. January felt like three months and each month after that continued to drag on then November came too quickly. It felt like this month was too quick to even reflect on whatever happened. But I will try to summarize my really short month with at least a 500-word minimum.

Here were my November goals of this month:

 

 

 

 

 

 

Unfortunately, I was only able to accomplish two out of three this month. At some point this month I’ve reached a stage where I was unmotivated and dreaded the thought of waking up. Heck, I was too lazy to even take a bath.

Now, I’m feeling a little better except the reason is that Christmas is almost here. I am actually excited about Christmas this year because this marks the first holiday season where I am actually an adult. It is a milestone I want to celebrate since I’ve spent the past seven months miserable.

Let’s help reduce waste in our own little ways

On my Instagram, I have been sharing my journey to zero waste life! I have an array of stylish eco bags that I use whenever I go shopping as well as a cute golden stainless straw and a travel coffee mug.

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My favorite is my lightweight, eco-friendly travel coffee mug which I use when I go to 7-eleven for a coffee/hot cocoa fix or to a coffee shop that still uses paper cups.

Aside from reusable products I also tried shampoo bars! Here are the two I have used for the past few months. So far, my favorite from Melusch Naturelle which I bought in an expo a few months ago. It smells very good, it foams up quite nicely and washes my hair without rigorously trying to get it to foam. Melech is also very affordable unfortunately they do not have a physical store yet but they are online!

https://www.instagram.com/p/BnOVgIpBA1A/?utm_source=ig_web_button_share_sheet

I will admit it is both difficult and expensive to live a zero-waste life. It takes time to fully commit to using environmentally friendly and reusable products. You have to put it in your routine, research about recycling and stores which offers eco-friendly and sustainable products. It also involves a lot of budgeting which in the end would come back because going reusable will benefit your pockets in the later run.

Recommended Reading: A Beginner’s Guide to Zero-Waste Living (Ps, It Doesn’t Happen Overnight)

I would like to point out you do not need to spend so much money on reusable products. A good old tumbler is okay if that’s all you can afford. You can bring your own utensils from home, you do not need a reusable bamboo utensil which would leave a massive hole in your pocket.

Need an Eco bag? There are cheaper and nicer options in your grocery store or at a local shop that fits your price range. You do not need all of these fancy reusable products to help the planet.

If a shampoo bar is too expensive, opt for refillable shampoo and conditioners preferably non-plastic. This is a cheaper and another environmentally friendly option you can consider.

(Recommended reading: 6 Plastic-Free Alternatives for Shampoo and Conditioner)

Volunteering to raise awareness

Recently, I have applied to be a volunteer for an HIV-awareness advocacy organization.

There’s also quite a number of Filipinos who are unaware of safe sex like how to use a condom. Now, I’ve had this conversation with a woman who is in her forties who admitted she and her husband do not know how to use a condom. Then there are those who say sex is not fun or pleasurable with a condom on which highlights the problem even more. But, HIV isn’t just the only thing you need to avoid.

I have been an advocate of safe sex for a long while because protection is just as important as pleasure.

Even if you are on the Pill ladies take note: the pill makes sure you do not have babies however it doesn’t protect you from STIs so a condom is still important. Because most STIs are asymptomatic like herpes (it only shows when there’s an outbreak), HPV, and even chlamydia!

Photo by Sharon McCutcheon on Unsplash
Photo by Sharon McCutcheon on Unsplash

Today, December 1 is World AIDs day which commemorates those who have died from the disease and to raise awareness about HIV. Here are some products and tips:

  • The male condom – boys if you feel uncomfortable wearing condoms then maybe it’s the wrong size or you might be allergic to them. However, you do not use the second reason as an excuse to have unprotected sex.
  • The rare and exotic female condom – it is an internal condom, it protects you from STIs and you can use lubrication to make things more fun.
  • A dental dam – for both the men and Queer ladies out there. A dental dam is a big sheet of latex which you can use as a barrier for oral sex. You don’t know where they have been or who they have been with. You need to protect both your mouth and your vagina. (Alternatives to the dental damn: a condom, a latex glove, and if out of options non-microwaveable cling wrap.)

Have fun but be safe along the way. So far, due to my job, I can only commit very little of my time. However, I do want to truly be part of this endeavor because I have covered stories on the HIV epidemic in my country. It is very alarming to see the numbers are rising and the ages are getting younger.

Sleepless nights and late mornings

Most people in my life would be surprised to find out I no longer wake up early. I remember my parents telling me I had the habit of waking up as early as 5 a.m. when I was a kid. This habit stuck with me throughout my high school and college years. Never have I ever used the snooze button when I was in school because I was addicted to being punctual. I love being 15 minutes early to everything.

The only time I have been late is when I have a bad mood but most of the time I’m early. Now, that’s where the problem is because for the past seven months I have been nothing but a bad mood. I hit the snooze button at least four times before actually getting out of bed.

I don’t mind being late nowadays because it now feels useless to be early. The mindset of being punctual has disappeared. I’m very disappointed with myself because this is not me, I do not recognize the person I have been for the past few months. It feels weird knowing I don’t mind if I am late.

Worst of all I know why I’m late and I don’t adjust. I sleep late which only gives me 4 to five hours of sleep five days a week. So, it’s my fault why I don’t have the energy to be motivated or actually try anything. Out of all the goals I’ve have done sleeping better is the hardest to accomplish.

So I have listed the reasons why I have trouble sleeping:

  • I scroll mindlessly on Instagram and Twitter
  • I believe the night is the only time I can talk and catch-up with long-distance friends
  • I watch YouTube videos of random things like BTS videos, motivational videos, and animated short films.

Basically, it all boils down to being on my phone until 3 a.m. and sleeping when my eyes finally tell me I am tired of looking at the same meme.

Screenless 2019 and this time I mean it

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I am not big on social media. Rarely do I post anything on my Facebook or Instagram though most of my time is spend mindlessly scrolling.  My phone is also the main reason for my sleepless nights and groggy mornings.

I want to be more productive. Nowadays, I am reading more and writing more as well as continuing my watercolor hobby.

Hopefully, this time I can complete three of my goals this December.

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