✖ dear diary, I've been really struggling lately

Tuesday, 18 June 2019

Dear diary, I'm struggling to get out of bed. I'm struggling to find anything that would even the tiniest bit spark my interest and motivation in life. I haven't showered for a week, my hair is unbrushed. Gosh, when was the last time I even brushed my teeth?

I've been living in a fog, trying to please everyone else except myself. I haven't been able to sleep, I haven't eaten properly. Why is it, that each time I'm starting to feel a bit better something comes up and down the hill, I go again? Why is it, that I feel like I shouldn't be allowed to feel these feelings? And why is it, that each time I open up these things to someone I feel like a burden?

A while back, my friend wondered how I'm handling it all so well. I look so busy, how am I holding up? That's exactly how I'm holding up. I keep myself busy not to be alone with my thoughts. And it's a real struggle when I don't have anything else to do than to be alone with my thoughts.

I need to deal with things, yet I would rather choose to avoid them.

As after all, it would be easier that way. And I am very, very tired.

✖ my summer playlist

Monday, 17 June 2019

It's been a quite a while since I've shared anything music-related over here (or anything, for that matter) so I decided to share my summer playlist on Spotify. What are your go-to summer tunes?

✖ 4 x festival outfit inspiration

Sunday, 16 June 2019

It's less than two weeks until I get to sleep in a tent amongst drunk festival visitors on a camping area of Provinssi rock festival in Seinäjoki, Finland and I couldn't be more excited about it. Actually, I'm that excited that I've been doing some outfit inspiration flat lay pictures just so that I know what to pack. I'm also going to mix and match those items, as I don't really feel like dragging my whole wardrobe there with me.

I picked out four of my favourite combo's that I created, of which of three are for the day time and the last one is for the chilly summer evening. It gets surprisingly cold during the night, even though Midsummer and the "whole sun never sets" -thing has been a week before this festival. Let's remember that I am not a fashion blogger, even the funny fact about lifestyle blogs is that you can basically type about anything, so I might not be able to tell you how I got into these choices that I made. I also believe that this is a great way of showing you what kind of my style actually is, as most of these are the cornerstones in my wardrobe.

✖ for the day time

The cornerstone? That trashed Levi's denim jacket. I basically wear it with everything I possibly can imagine. And with this dress, it looks lovely simply worn or tied on my hips. The dress is from UrbanOutfitters by the way and it cost ridiculously lot, that's why I'm trying to wear it as much as possible. Perhaps not to my friend's wedding later this month, but everywhere else.

Everything in this outfit is from H&M. And the cornerstone? Those shoes. I've had them for more than five years now and they're starting to look like I should find a new pair somewhere but they feel so ridiculously good on my feet. I think they're part of my feet now.
If it's going to be raining, I'll add black tights and that denim jacket to the combo and I'm good to go.

You might recognise this clothing combo from some earlier blog posts, or from Instagram's gorgeous world. The shorts, which might very possibly be the most colourful thing in my wardrobe are from H&M, shoes Converse, and the t-shirt is from Weekday.

A funny thing about those sneakers... They've been to 8 countries during I've walked with them, I've had them for 8 years and I can see my pinkie toe and the left shoe sole has almost fallen off. I hope they'll get through this summer so I have a good excuse to buy a new pair next Spring.

✖ for the chilly evening

The only new thing here is the knit, which is from American Eagle and those trashed jeans which are from H&M. But I thought this could be cosy and perfectly warm for a chilly summer evening.

What do you usually wear to festivals?

✖ oh hello there, you evil little Instagram algorithm

Wednesday, 12 June 2019

There has been a lot of talk about the Instagram algorithm as long as I can remember. When I first created my Instagram account, it was talked about then and until this very day it has been talked about, perhaps even more. Is there really a way of beating Instagram algorithm in 2019?

Recently, I've been struggling with a little writer's block and when I asked around of what I should write about and went through unhealthy amounts of stats, I ended up on writing Instagram again. Also, "you should write something about Instagram as I haven't seen a person who knows about it as much as you do", so here we go again.

 what is an algorithm?
At first, you should know what the algorithm actually is. And algorithms are pretty effin' tricky things.
"In mathematics and computer science, an algorithm is an unambiguous specification of how to solve a class of problems. Algorithms can perform calculation, data processing, automated reasoning and other tasks."
The definition was brought here to you from Wikipedia's wonderful world. There are multiple different algorithms that can be created for different purposes. The one on Instagram basically works based on your own actions in the app. It's also designed to get the user to spend more time in the app itself.

The algorithm on Instagram is created to learn based on the user's actions in the app. It process data, on how you behave in the app. How much time you spend in it, what you are doing during that time you spend there and based on that it shows you the content first that it thinks you're most interested in.

You might've heard someone say that "Instagram isn't showing my posts to anyone". That actually isn't true itself and the better wording for the sentence could be "Instagram doesn't think my posts are relevant to my followers, which leads me to be at the bottom of your main feeds."
In reality, you can see all posts from the past two days in your main feed, but if you're following thousands of people you might not have the energy to scroll at the very bottom, where the posts that algorithm thinks that aren't relevant to you are.

And since the Instagram algorithm is learning constantly to curate the content of the app for something that is perfect to a small hand of users, the creator of the algorithm has very little control over on how it works. It's just something that runs on the background, and I don't think it should be blamed completely.
Since the Instagram algorithm is constantly learning to curate the content of the app for its users, the creator of the algorithm has very little control over on how it works.
This is something that I want people to understand. It's not the fault of the person who has created the algorithm, as the algorithm itself is genius. The algorithm itself learns along the way and when the computer is doing all the work, it can be a bit tacky at times. Because well, like humans, computers as well do their fair share of mistakes. And then they will learn for them.

I've seen a lot of tweets on blaming the creators of the algorithms and the thing is, it's not entirely their fault. They've simply just given the basics for the computer on how to solve a problem x and given them the possibility to learn how to find new solutions on solving different problems. If you were up to do some minor changes on how it works, you should create the whole damn thing from the beginning.

so how does the Instagram algorithm affect?
I'll break it down for you, as a form of a list.

✖ it is constantly learning based on your behaviour in the app
✖ it is designed to show you the content that is most relevant to you

Yeah, that's it.

Let's say you're following roughly 200 people on Instagram. You can get to the bottom of your main feed multiple times a day, and are able to see all their Instagram stories throughout the day. You've seen it all they've posted during the past two days.

Let's say you follow over 1000 people on Instagram. You might not see all the people's posts, but is it because you don't have the time to scroll at the bottom of the feed? Instagram is showing the posts of the people you're following from the past two days. If you follow over thousands of people, it's very likely that there are people who are posting multiple times a day, which gives you the impression you won't see anyone else posting on Instagram but the handful of people who dump three pictures in their feeds per day.

And that is my friends when the "it's designed to show you the content that is most relevant to you" becomes in the play. If you're more likely to like and engage with the people who post multiple times a day, of course, the algorithm will show their posts to you first. If you're more likely to interact or engage to same people's posts all over and over again, the algorithm will show their posts to you first. Because the information that you have given to it is that you seem to really enjoy the account's x content. You actually enjoy it so much, that you're most likely to interact with it so it learns that it must be something that is really relevant to you.

If you don't engage with anything, it simply guesses what could be most relevant to you and shows it up at the top of your main feed.

 is beating the Instagram algorithm actually possible?
Why would we want to beat something we could try to learn to use in our advantage?
This is going to be one of those posts where the writer isn't going to provide you with any actual ways on beating the algorithm but based on what you've just learned from simply reading this post, is there anything you could use in changing your future behaviour inside the app? If the flipping algorithm can learn things very efficiently, why couldn't we? Oh right, it's too much work for us. Why work for something you really want?
Why beat it, when you can trick it by simply changing your own behaviour?
Why wouldn't we, instead of complaining about something that simply isn't our hands (nor really the developer, to be fair) would actually try and engage with like-minded people? Create a community? Work for creating engaging captions, engaging content?

That's why follow loops, comment pods, giveaway loops, follow/unfollow game and mass liking doesn't really work. It doesn't make your content more engaging. And the more engaging your content is, more likely people will engage in it. And the more engagement the posts receives, the more relevant the algorithm believes it is to more people, and that's when you start reaching the accounts who don't even follow you by simply ending up to a search page's suggestions.

✖ learning to embrace the dull moments

Monday, 10 June 2019

Dull moments. The ones when you really don't have anything special in your calendar. The only thing that's left in there, is work but nothing special happens before or after the work. I call them dull moments because I'm the type of person who needs to do things and see different stuff unless she's bored to death. I don't know how to be still.

But there are good things in stillness, right? There has to be, right? Not so sure, as I am struggling. Everyone keeps telling me that though.

After this week is all sorted out, I luckily have filled the next three weeks with music. First, we're off to see Muse performing, then I'll be off to Provinssirock with my dear friend who's coming to Finland and later I'll be off for another backstage hosting gig for Ruisrock music festival. Exciting times ahead, and while I don't have anything to do at this very moment, I should try and embrace the boredom.

Psychology Today listed 8 reasons why we get bored, and while I read the article, I learned a bunch of new stuff about myself. I think I'm one of those who are more prone to be bored. How about you, do you get bored easily? Also, is this a sign thing? I'm Aquarius.
Aquarius can get bored easily, they need something new, unique and out of the ordinary to keep them entertained.
That's what I once read somewhere. I don't know if it's true, except that it fits for me perfectly.

Apparently, wildly successful people choose to embrace boredom and are using different techniques like Pomodoro to get out of the most boring tasks. I don't necessarily have anything where I could use the whole Pomodoro technique (except cleaning, for which I should really give it a go), but I'm going to have to keep an eye on things that could require using this technique.

It has also been said that you need to get bored to get creative. It sort of works out for me, but when you are bored enough of being bored starting something and getting bored to it instantly makes you more bored, what can you do? What a monstrosity of a sentence.

I think I'm going to have to do a little more yoga to solve this knot of thoughts.

✖ disabling my social media notifications

Sunday, 2 June 2019

I recently went and disabled my Facebook notifications. After a week, I moved on to disabling Twitter notifications and by today I've basically disabled every single app sending me notifications. What did I notice, and how did I cope? What about FOMO and all that shit, that seems to be a thing now?

We're living in an era where huge parts of our lives are controlled over by social media. Which is pretty ironic for me disabling all the notifications, considering that I'm studying to become an expert on the area. But while we are out our smartphones glued to our hands, every single red tiny ball popping around our app icons and constantly checking up if there would be a notification implying that someone has been missing us, is that life we want to live?

I'd be lying if I say I didn't take a small break here to check up a few Instagram stories in the middle of the process of writing this one out.

Guys, we have an addict here.

Here are some things that will happen when you disable the notifications from your social media apps.

✖ you will use social media a lot less
Obviously. DUH, Jasmin, why did you mention the obvious? Well, because it's not that obvious. If you check the stats from your smartphone, the ones that let you know how much time you spend daily on your phone and in which apps, you'd faint. It's said that we Millenials spend around 8 hours a day on our smartphones. It's a full day at work, how on Earth do we have the time for that? Oh right, we use our smartphones at work too. It's become something such a usual thing to do, that it's more unusual if you forget your phone home. Forgetting your phone home in 2019 feels like you've left your apartment forgetting to wear your pants.

But how does disabling the notifications help you to spend less time in social media? Because there isn't really anything drawing you towards the app. Do you know why notification bubble on top of the app is red? It used to be blue (at least on Facebook).
They did a study a while back, resulting in a massive increase in clicks when the notification bubble was turned red. So while red is a colour for multiple things, it's also a colour to increase the interest towards something.

When you haven't got any notifications, you have no actual interest in the app whatsoever.
Forgetting your phone home in 2019 feels like you've left your apartment forgetting your pants. It leaves you feeling naked, vulnerable and uncomfortable.
✖ you will realise that FOMO isn't a thing
FOMO, also known as the "fear of missing out" has become something that has been hyped around for a while now. And yes, I'm here to put an end to that, as I really don't believe it exists.
Of course, when you see your friends going out, doing things, hyping up their lives on social media, other people succeeding in things they're good at; it makes you feel disappointed.

Why you don't get to do that stuff? Why you don't succeed in life as well as others? You start feeling jealous about it. You feel like you are missing out on the cool things. And when you get caught up in that feeling, you crave it more in some weird masochistic way that you actually start fearing that you will miss out on something that you're not a part of.

And that's how we get addicted, and afraid of missing out on something we think we are interested in. Even though we just want to feed that comparing little house elf that is living inside all of us.

How to get rid of the inner house elf? Disable notifications, forget your apps, never fear of missing out on something again. How can you get FOMO, when you don't know what you're missing?

✖ you will gain the control of your own life back
The question is, are you doing all that because you want to or because it would look amazing on social media? You might choose a cafe or a restaurant you really can't afford, but because it would fit amazingly on your Instagram feed. You might choose to take a picture of a car crash scene and share it to Facebook in hope for reactions, instead of stopping by and helping out. Or moving away to let the rescue workers do their jobs. You might choose to copy-paste a viral tweet on Twitter, in hope for it to go viral too, just for a few red bubbles on your social media icon.

Would you really do all that stuff, if social media wasn't having control over you? Would you?
You might choose to take a picture of a car crash scene and share it to Facebook in hope for reactions, instead of stopping by and helping out.
 you will feel happier
Being happy is a tricky little thing. It's also a journey, not the destination, as they keep telling all of us in a seek for it. The thing is, I haven't found my happiness yet and I don't think that's even the point in all this disabling the notifications nonsense.

The point is, after disabling my notifications I haven't been spending my days mindlessly scrolling through different apps. After disabling my notifications, I haven't felt the fear of missing out on something. I have felt more content in the life I've been living. I've been more present for the people I hang out with on a daily basis.

And I think you should disable your notifications too. Not to feel happier, but to falling back on being in your life.

✖ Copenhagen stole my heart

Saturday, 1 June 2019

Happy first of June, you lovely lot! Can you believe we've already passed the half-year mark on this year of 2019? I've managed to do a lot, yet feeling like there's something I haven't had time to do yet. Do you know the feeling, when you realise that you've been on a move for every single day during these six months and still feel like you really haven't done anything? That certainly is a mindset I really need to grow out of, as well, I have done a shitload of different things. There's no chance in hell my calendar would fit any more in it than there already is.

Although, last week, during our little road trip to Denmark we managed to spend a day in Copenhagen and I absolutely fell in love with the city. Copenhagen was definitely something else that I've used to while roaming around Scandinavia. It has its own warm vibe, and I don't know if I can give it justice when I try to put it in words. It's something that needs to be experienced.

Nyhavn is iconic, and it's definitely what comes up first when you go to the Instagram search bar and put Copenhagen in it before you hit search. However, any of these pictures won't do justice for the vibe there was. We visited quite early in the morning, so there weren't that many people out there just yet but it's definitely the spot where all the tourists are first heading to.
Nyhavn had such pretty colourful houses, such a wonderful riverboat sight and the smell of fresh food. I mean, I could live there.

✖ The Union Kitchen
The Union Kitchen had the most badass cappuccino's in town. I mean, mine said "Calm the fuck down" and it was by far one of the best ways to begin my morning. We had our breakfast outside, which was this tasty cuppa and a waffle, but I had a little glimpse to the inside of what it looks like there and it was definitely the definition of "hygge".

✖ the streets of Copenhagen
The streets of Copenhagen stole my heart. All the narrow alleys, the trees, the buildings. It gave me the whole Gamla Stan vibe I tend to have in Stockholm (I'll tell you more about that later), but with different colours.

✖ Den Lille Havfrue
The little mermaid statue was also something I've wanted to tick off my bucket list since the early days of my life. Or well, since the times I used to live in the library reading different travel books that I managed to get in my hands.

After all, it was a wonderful visit to such a wonderful town.

✖ 10 songs for a road trip

Friday, 24 May 2019

Do you know the feeling when you hear a song, and you instantly know it's a road trip song? I absolutely love road trips and making playlists for the road trips I might enjoy a bit more.

When this post goes live, I'll be in Denmark. Eek, how exciting is that?

So here we go. I am going to list 10 songs right here, and by clicking each one of them you'll end up in Spotify. So you don't have to go and type all of them in the search bar, and you can easily just click the links like in my other song recommendation posts as well.

✖ "I fought the law" by The Clash
✖ "Lemon" by The Golden Leaves & Blacklight
✖ "Used to the darkness" by Des Rocs
✖ "Blame it on my youth" by Blink-182
✖ "Dress Up" by The Regrettes
Remember when we would spend all night on the kitchen floor, laughin' 'bout some fight. I wish I could drink your tea, but some people change when they move to valley.
✖  "100 Bad Days" by AJR
✖ "I'm gonna be" by the Proclaimers
✖ "Die Happy" by DREAMERS
✖ "Metallica t-shirt" by Wolfie's Just Fine
✖ "Gently break it" by Beck Pete

✖ in the sea of smartphones

Thursday, 23 May 2019

The 1st of May, I went to see Lukas Graham performing live at the Circus club in Helsinki, Finland. It was such an amazing experience, and holy crap the guy knows how to sing. Also, I was very touched by the stories of his daughter. Basically the sweetest stuff ever.

If you want to see how the actual gig went, there's some bits and bobs in my Instagram highlights, as today I'm here to talk about something very different. Though related in the gig I went to.

Call me old fashioned, if you like, but do you remember the times when the slow song began and you would pick up your lighter, light it and wave it in the air to the beat of the music until the gas ran out of it? Is it just me? Am I the only one who still thinks it's a lot cooler than to lift the flashlight of your smartphone in the air and wave it around until you run out of the battery?

To be fair, using a smartphone for the purpose is a lot safer. It also might look a bit more beautiful in larger venues and just to be completely honest, not everyone has a lighter in their pocket nowadays.

But just as a thought we can play with today: isn't lighting up the flashlight from your smartphone, basically creating a huge sea of smartphones? It's magical and powerful in its own way but at the same time, it reminds us how the times have changed.

Once we took the lighters to the gig, put up a sea of lighters.
Now it's just a sea of smartphones.
An end of one era.
Hit me harder than I would have thought.

Guess who lit her lighter in the audience.

✖ extremely wicked, shockingly evil and vile

Wednesday, 22 May 2019

Earlier this year Netflix released a movie and a series from the same director, Joe Berlinger, that were taking on a few different perspectives on Ted Bundy case.

If you don't know who Theodore "Ted" Bundy is, I highly recommend you to look it up. Let's just say that the looks and the charm can be very deceiving. However, I'm very fascinated in a very odd way on how he managed to keep his guard up until just a few days before his execution until he confessed these horrendous crimes he had done.

My interest in this kind of stuff goes a long way and during the 8th grade, I was very into multiple things, including serial killers. I went through everything I was able to find from Jack the Reaper to Ted Bundy. I mean, a normal hobby for a 14-year-old, huh?

Yesterday evening (or well, this evening, as I'm writing this piece), I watched the Ted Bundy film starring Zac Efron and I learned a couple of things:
✖ Zac Efron is actually a pretty good actor
✖ If you don't know anything about Ted Bundy stuff beforehand, you might actually feel sorry for him
✖ I haven't heard anything about Kaya Scodelario after her acting Effy in Skins
✖ It taught most of us the main point about serial killers

Zac Efron is actually a pretty good actor
There, I said it. To be honest, I've never been a fan of his, especially after I read somewhere that he stated High School Musical was the biggest mistake of his life or something like that. Can't quote that, as I don't really remember what he said, but the point was made. Then I saw him in 17 Again and still wasn't impressed. After 17 Again, I saw him in that circus movie, what was it called?
Right, The Greatest Showman. And wasn't he in Hairspray as well?

Don't get me wrong. I am deeply in love with musicals, but with Zac Efron, I've never been. I guess this is one of those popular unpopular opinions that I'm currently typing out of my keyboard.

Now seeing him in Extremely Wicked, Shockingly Evil and Vile, I actually can give him the credit he deserves. The actor choice for Ted was actually spot on. And I know this shares a lot of opinions and there were people who thought that choosing someone like Zac is basically "glamorising" serial killers, who are supposed to be evil and vile. He did his job well. Actually better than well.

If you don't know anything about Ted Bundy stuff beforehand, you might actually feel sorry for him
I think I would have wanted to see the movie without actually knowing anything about Ted Bundy beforehand. I think what it would've felt like to watch something, where the info is completely new. The movie was put on a perspective, where they didn't straight forwarded accuse Ted of doing those heinous acts but they managed to describe incredibly well of what his closest people might've felt like at the time. And that's when you start feeling sorry for Ted. You start believing that he actually wasn't guilty at all. Although, based on everything I've read before and seeing Ted Bundy tapes on Netflix before, it didn't kick me that way.

I saw a man, who had managed to convince himself into living in a lie until the very moment the person he loved the most cracked his guards down. I mean, you know it's easy to push things you don't want to believe you've done to the back of your mind, begin a lie and start living in that lie. Unless, if you aren't smart enough to remember what you've lied about.

Although, despite the awful things he had done, he was a very intelligent person. He just chose the wrong path to use it, combined with this awful urge to murder and torture young women in the process. The movie, on the other hand, succeeded to show that even he was extremely wicked, shockingly evil and vile, perhaps one of the most horrendous serial killers of our time, he was also a human.

It taught most of us the main point about serial killers
In January, I wrote about the "Bad Boy effect" and why we tend to fall in love with the psycho version of Dan Humphrey. And I felt like I needed to link it here because it slightly sides the topic of this blog post.

The main point about serial killers, killers and other bad people, in general, is that you can't really know who is able to commit such heinous acts. They don't walk around with a label "serial killer" tattooed in their foreheads. And it's not meant to be tossed out there, so you'd be scared of every single person you'll cross your path in life, but even the ones who "could never have do stuff like that" sometimes actually can do stuff like that. And as scary that is, it's important to remember.

The point is, that they're human too. Whether we enjoy it or not. And it's scary as fuck.

✖ 10 x happy things

Tuesday, 21 May 2019

Earlier this morning, I did some yoga and put on my favourite yoga instruction video from Youtube. It's a fun thing to say though, as it's only been there for a month but I've done it so many times I can almost remember the routine completely on my own. It's called "Yoga to feel your best" and that's exactly what it does, so it's perfect for the mornings.

However, I'm not here to talk about yoga today (if I was, would you still be here? Let me know if that's something that interests you! Weekly free yoga instruction video recommendations, perhaps?). Today I'm here to talk about setting intentions, as the previously mentioned video suggested me to do and I thought about 10 happy things that I've felt lately.

If the positivity bugs you, just hold on to that day when I can finally find some time to write about that Ted Bundy movie on Netflix but for now, here is a list of things that have made me happy lately.

✖ I bought a new phone (went straight to the materialistic things, didn't I?)
✖ I also managed to sell some old clothes of mine and now I'm in a desperate need of new ones
✖ An adventure to Denmark waiting ahead
✖ I landed on another backstage hosting gig and will be attending to one of the biggest music festivals in Finland next summer
✖ Little walks I've done with my old workmate
✖ My new workmates
✖ The fact that it's warm (I also hate it, it's been 26°C degrees today and I feel like I'm dying)
✖ I've started running again (I know right, what's gone in me?)
✖ I'm less emotionally exhausted
✖ I've been sleeping better

Most of these things might be quite small, but for me, at the state, I am at the moment, they are huge. It's the little things, the little things that are the ones that are able to make you feel happy. When you appreciate them enough. 

✖ few things I've learned during the first year of uni

Friday, 17 May 2019

Here we are, all tapped. Tapped? Can you say that?
My point was, that here we are. The first year of uni is finally over and holy shit it went by fast. I also learned a bunch of new things, and as some of you might know how much I like to turn things into positive learning experiences, this is definitely one of those.
Don't get me wrong, my classmates are flipping awesome and in general, I'm really enjoying uni.

✖ a lot of things are made in groups
Holy crap how many group projects I've been part of this year! I believe not even the fingers on my both hands will be enough to count the number of group projects we've had. It's ridiculous, and it's also flipping amazing. I've been lucky to have such wonderful people as my classmates, so working with them is really fun and fruitful. Although, I've always used to depend on myself so sharing the responsibilities in order to succeed as an individual in the group has been one of the most difficult tasks I've come across. So it's definitely been a learning experience for me as well.

✖ studying new things is exhausting
Since I haven't been studying these past four years before I started at the University of applied sciences last Autumn, because I simply wasn't able to get in there, lol. So adjusting my brain into the student mode was a bit difficult for me during the first semester. I've finally gotten a bit better grip on this new life of mine and starting to feel a bit more comfortable with it.

 all things move forward really quickly
There have been some courses where we simply haven't had time to study all the things there are to study, which means the teacher is usually going forward with the speed of lightning. Though I'm pretty proud of myself I've been able to keep up with the coding stuff, as that's the stuff that has been "new" to me during these first two semesters.

After all, the first year has been wonderful.
I'm definitely looking forward to next Autumn and the second year as a student. Perhaps I'll graduate in three years, goodness, how fast the time is flying by.

✖ Haukankierros nature trail in Nuuksio National Park, Finland

Thursday, 16 May 2019

A week or a few weeks back, (I've lost the track of time basically), my dear friend found herself from Finland. So what did I do? Dragged her to Nuuksio of course. Don't get me wrong, she's Finnish, she's been there before but you know, when you're living in Norway you need a teeny-weeny reminder of what Finnish nature looks like when you're used to the magnificent mountains in Norway.

The trail we walked was around 4km long, took us a few hours and was chosen based on an Instagram hashtag I found. Instagram hashtags play a huge role in where I might go when I'm you know, going to places in general. That's how I find the coffee shops worthy of visiting, and that's definitely a better way to find out what it looks like in a specific nature trail in Nuuksio, as the pictures on their website are rather bland.

It was definitely a worth to go to. Can't wait to visit the place again.

✖ 3 thoughts about starting on a new job

Wednesday, 15 May 2019

The moment has finally arrived: I've started on a new job. It has been a huge difference from what I've used to, yet very refreshing one. It has taken some time for me to adjust to everything, and actually being around customers has taken its toll on me, especially during the first week.

There's not a basement 40m underground I can go to hide anymore.

And even though there's not an option to hide from people, and even though being social such long period of times through the day has been rather exhausting, I've still felt more like my old self than I used to feel, let's say two months ago.

✖ I have some obsessions I've brought from a previous job to another
Well, as a first thing, I have this obsession to organise everything in the size order and that's something we don't do at the new place. Also, I almost fainted when I saw our storage for the very first time. The fact that things are done quite the opposite than I've used to, and it takes some time to adjust in this new, a bit messier way to work. I'm not saying that it's a bad thing, it's actually pretty good and in a hectic environment like in the new place, it actually saves some time. In a really weird way. But as I said, it definitely takes some time.

✖ not every day will be the same
What I really love about this new job is that not every day will be the same. The faces won't be the same, the customers won't be the same and I actually get to speak in English quite a lot. It's really fun, although it kind of sticks. Sometimes I accidentally tell customers the final price of their products in both, in Finnish and in English. I might even greet them in English, even though they're Finnish. There have been a few awkward moments there, haha. But it's part of the job and I'm definitely fully embracing it.

✖ your job doesn't have to be mentally and physically exhausting
The funny thing is, that even though I'm spending around 95% of the time at work on my feet I don't find it physically exhausting. And I believe it has something to do with the fact that it's not mentally exhausting if you know what I mean?
A few days back I got off work at 8pm and I smiled. What kind of a lunatic smile after a rough day at work? Apparently, I do. So unless I haven't completely lost it, I'd say I really enjoy my work.

So here are my thoughts, after one full week.
Let's see what I think about it in a month, but so far it's been one of the best life changes I've made in my short life so far.

✖ the best things in life are found used

Tuesday, 14 May 2019

It has been a while again guys, although a week ago I was in a great roll tho, don't you think? I started in a new job last week and as you know, when something new jumps into your life you kind of pause everything else. Or at least, I do. I tend to pause everything else to fully focus on consuming new information.

Which brings us to other new things in my life, (smooth, wasn't it?). It also brings us to that rather awkward title of this blog post, and please do bear with me. I haven't been sleeping too well.

I found a new dining table for the dining area! Some of you guys might still remember that huge two-metre long wooden dining table we had previously and even though I was absolutely in love with it, I decided we needed to go for something a lot more compact than that. To be honest, it took a lot of space in our home in general. And the only half of it was properly in use and the other half was more like stuffed with a bunch of random stuff that didn't have a proper place to be put on.

And what do I mean by "the best things in life are found used"?
Because this is what it is. I went online, checked out what people in my area were selling and found this beautiful Ikea Kvarnsten dining table from there. It doesn't always have to be new, right?

Have you made any great second-hand finds lately?

✖ my summer bucket list

Monday, 6 May 2019

Since there have been so many deep and thoughtful posts lately, I decided to kick off the week by listing things I want to experience during the Summer. Even though I'm more like a Winter type of a gal, I really like Summer too. Unless it's too hot and oh boy, last Summer was. We're expecting another one of those so I might have to start preparing myself for that. Thanks to climate change, thanks.

the official bucket list of mine for Summer of 2019
✖ do more yoga outside
✖ watch more sunsets than Netflix
✖ write more
✖ play more ukulele
✖ drink more water
✖ do a little road trip
✖ see Muse performing live
✖ spend time with the loved ones
✖ eat healthy, with a good amount of pizza
✖ take more runs outside
✖ see Ed Sheeran performing live
✖ go to a music festival
✖ sleep in a tent
✖ walk in a rain
✖ go for a swim in a lake
✖ get a new tattoo

What's on your bucket list for the Summer?

✖ thoughts about handing in my notice

Sunday, 5 May 2019

As I mentioned before, I went in and handed my notice. This week has been the first week in almost five years I haven't had to wake up at 4AM in any morning, and oh well - it's been oddly but not surprisingly refreshing.

✖ starting to feel more energised
To be honest, waking up that early has been taking its toll on me. And combined with school, it's been even more awful. I've felt like I haven't had any time to do anything between school and work, except sleep and it has left me feeling like an awful human being on all aspects of life. All I did was sleep, go to uni, sleep, go to work and repeat. And I have so much more going on in my life, which I haven't been in on 100%.

✖ feeling less socially drained
Considering the fact that I'm sleeping a lot more now and I don't have a place to go to and pretend to be a happy employee anymore, I've been feeling less drained socially. When you have to go to a place to pretend you're something you're not, it's exhausting and I wouldn't want that even for the person I dislike the most. It's draining, and afterwards, you just want to wrap yourself in a blanket in a dark room and be alone for the rest of your life. It took a toll on my relationships, my mental health and well, the fact of how many events I've skipped because of being so exhausted about life.

✖ taking better care of my wellbeing
During this past week, I've been taking better care of my own wellbeing. I've showered more often, I've found some energy to clean around the apartment, and actually keeping it clean. I've done more laundry than I've done these past six months, my skin is in better shape, I haven't felt ill. Small steps, but I'm getting there. Getting back to the stage where I'm less depressed, anxious sleep-deprived zombie and more like just a depressed anxious me. And it's a lot. I'm even brushing my hair.

It's a lot.
And it's the best choice I've ever made.
I saw this quote once:

"If it costs you your mental health, it's not worth it."

✖ Skippergata 22, the most random coffee shop experience in Oslo, Norway?

Friday, 3 May 2019

Have you ever stepped your foot in a coffee shop with an idea of your head that you're going to enjoy the cuppa in a lovely quiet little coffee shop and perhaps sit in a table where you can see the busyness of the streets? That's what I had in my mind when I stepped in the doors of the Skippergata 22.

The first impression of the place was that the music was so loud. I wasn't sure if I had gone into a coffee shop or a night club. Though it had some cosy cushions and comfy looking sofa's around, there was a piano even, which I now, later on, believe, was on sale.

The place was like dragged straight out of Brooklyn and brought in the middle of Oslo, which was the vibe I absolutely loved in it. When you walked in, it felt like you walked into your own living room. Despite the music being too loud and the difficulty in ordering a cuppa because of it.

The coffee shop was all over the place. My friend and I even joked about the fact that someone might buy a chair under us, which wasn't quite off from the truth as most of the things seemed to be for sale. There were a few houseplants sold during the time we were there and I believe some even brought some of their stuff for sale over there. I'm not sure, at one point there was this huge group of people and a lot of Norwegian was spoken I kind of couldn't keep up with.

After all, the whole experience was flipping cool. Oh, and did I mention a dark room with a disco ball in the roof of a wooden iglu? Yeah, there's one of those too.

✖ Instagram making like count unvisible, will it actually help?

Thursday, 2 May 2019

It sounds quite dreamy, doesn't it? The fact that you don't have to worry about your like count anymore when you'll be posting new pictures on Instagram, eh? It's been rumoured that Instagram will test a new feature out, where the like counts are eliminated from viewers feeds.

What does this mean exactly? And how do I, in my personal point of view am feeling about that?

What is important here, is to remember that they have confirmed on testing this new feature at the moment. It's not something that will definitely be there at one point, it's a possibility but not necessarily something that'll happen right away.

According to Facebook confirmed that they're testing out eliminating the like counts from viewers feeds. "This test will keep the like counts intact, but will no longer show them to followers. With the test, only the user that shared the photo will see how many heart-clicks the photo or video garnered."

As with all user-testing, there are difficulties in this one as well. It will basically mean that when I post the picture on Instagram, only I will see how many people have liked the photo, which isn't too bad when you think about it. If you are the type of a person who doesn't give a crap about like counts. But it's important to remember that there are different types of people in the world.

imagined instagram user A
Let's say this person is the one who doesn't really care about the like counts. This type of person usually uses social media for their own fun (and really not in a business-wise). These people also tend to have their accounts hidden from the public, even though their Instagram account is private, they're still using hashtags under their posts without really realising the fact that their account is private. These are the ones who post on Instagram rarely, or often, but not at all consistently. Whenever they want and whatever they want.

imagined instagram user B
This type of person is most likely someone who is a basic Instagram user, with a public account and even though they say they don't care about the numbers, they secretly do. And when they are posting their pictures, they are often checking on how many likes the new post achieved. They don't necessarily have a business account, not necessarily know anything about the reachability of the post, or curate their hashtags in a specific way, but they still do care about the numbers. They're addicted to the fact that their posts are gaining likes.

imagined instagram user C
They have a public account, they don't give a crap about numbers and they post whatever they want and whenever they want. They're basically like the Instagram user A, but with a public account.

imagined instagram user D
This person takes Instagram as a platform that is more than a hobby for them. They tend to get creative with their pictures, they are doing hashtag searches related to their own niche, perhaps have a business account but may not necessarily grow their account on purpose. They might not have a specific goal to become the next Instagram success, they are genuinely enjoying about their hobby.

imagined instagram user E
This person takes Instagram very seriously. They have a business account to see all the stats, how many people they reach and tend to be very careful about the timings they post. They might even be bloggers, who are using their account on growing the readers of their blogs, or another place outside the actual Instagram app. Or, they don't have anything outside the app and they microblog directly on the platform. Yes, that is a thing now.

imagined instagram user F
These people influence other people. They get paid on posting, they are very consistent when it comes to creating content and they are very likely to get caught on the fact how well their posts do on specific social media platforms. Obviously, as they're probably getting paid for it.

I  could list hundreds of different user profiles there are on Instagram, but I think we've reached the right amount for the post to prove my point here. You might also have noticed that I left out the accounts that are promoting their businesses (except influencers) and the people who are on the platform behalf of another business (except bloggers).

Also, please note that these aren't any specific people. These are only profiles created quickly on my head without any specific gender, age, geolocation, or anything. These are imaginary user profiles.

Like everything, there are upsides and downsides on how "likes" are affecting people. It's been said that social media is a huge part of some mental illnesses. And I do not disagree with that.

It's been said that the like counts specifically are affecting people's mental health, however, is it because we get jealous of how many likes other people gain in their pictures or is it because we living in a society where stuff like "getting your own 15-minutes of fame" will increase our own addiction on gaining those likes?

Don't get me wrong here, I can imagine it's both. I can imagine, and I actually believe that it's the mix of both of those things. It's a difficult topic to wrap your head around it.

Likes can be considered as some sort of a drug by now, I'm not even oversaturating it. More people like our posts, more dopamine our brain develops. It's something we enjoy, it's something we begin to need, it's something we begin to imagine we need. Human psychology works that way, it gives us pleasure to see those other people like us. Whether it's something done face to face, or as simple as a click of heart on a social media platform.

And what do we do when we gain the number of good-feels we need at that very moment? We crave them more. It works the other way around as well, as when we don't get to the point where we want to, we start to feel that we've failed. And when we feel that we have failed, we get disappointed. And then we might feel disappointed in ourselves, and the cycle is created.

That's what social media is, constant dopamine hits and moments when you feel that feel-good feeling going away. It's like when you get high and you feel the effect of it drop. It's like getting drunk, feeling dizzy and happy until you get to the point when the effect is dropping and when you close your eyes the whole world feels like it's going round and round, leaving you feeling nauseous.

But how does the fact, that you will be the only person who will see your own likes stops us feeling like that? And will people still continue liking other peoples pictures, even though they don't see if anyone has liked it before? Doesn't it still leave us wondering how our posts are doing in social media? Will it help, when we have nothing to compare? Are we going to brag with our own likes on other social media platforms?

This test leaves so many questions unanswered, and I'm more than interested in where it will lead us. Although, I don't think it's a long-term solution to the spiral of madness we've gotten ourselves into fishing likes on the Internet.

But why did I create those imaginary user profiles? To make the point that there are us for multiple train cars. To make the point, that after all, we're all human and whether we got caught on how many likes our posts gain the social media can still leave us feeling like we aren't enough.

The ugly truth is that eliminating the like count visible from certain people won't stop us comparing ourselves to each other, and I believe that's what the most devious thing about social media is. And it's unfortunate, as we're all just enough, just as good and just as wonderful like everyone else on this planet. If there's anything to get out of this post, take a note on that.

✖ my favourite spot in my hometown | Pori, Finland

Wednesday, 1 May 2019

We spent the last weekend at my mum's celebrating my little brother's 10th birthday. My goodness, how is he 10 already, if I may ask? I don't know how he's the one ageing when I haven't aged a day.

Each time I'm around, my best friend of almost 20 years and I tend to have this little routine and we're off to shoot some pictures for ourselves. This time we visited at a spot that is by far one of my favourite places in my hometown. I cannot say it would be my favourite place in Finland as a whole, but it gets quite close to it.

This little gem is called Kallo, like a skull in English and it's located in Pori, Western-Finland.

I think the name Kallo comes from the skull alike structure of the stones there are. It's one of my favourite places to go and chill, watch the sea, enjoy the sunsets and have a little picnic if it isn't too windy.

What's your favourite place in your hometown?

✖ oslo, you pretty little thing

Thursday, 25 April 2019

I'm currently sat in a cute little chain coffee shop called Kaffebrenneriet in downtown Oslo as I am waiting for it to be the perfect time to head over to the airport. The weather these past few days I've spent here has been amazing, over 20°C degrees with sun, although today makes the exception for the rule and it's raining.

My friend left the flat early for work, and I've been travelling solo today. It's been a pretty fun journey so far. Oslo is such a beautiful city and an easy one to navigate.

It's been a great extended weekend away from home. I've gotten to clear my head a bit, managed to decline a few job offers (as I really like the place I already took a job from) and been walking like a maniac. I can already feel my hands shaking - not sure if it's because of the excitement of new things that are waiting for me at home or if it's the plane trip coming up in a few hours.

Or perhaps, I've just overdosed on caffeine.

✖ life lately: handing in my notice, finding a new job & trip to Norway

Tuesday, 16 April 2019

Well, well, well, it's been a while.

I feel like I want to update some of the big life changes I am going through at the moment. This time I've been away from writing anything on the blog has been going so fast. I didn't even realise that it was so long ago since I typed a post, so a little life update would be pretty damn great.

landing on a few job interviews
My hard work for finding a new job resulted in me in landing for a few job interviews which were pretty fabulous. After the first one, which was a group interview I felt like I lost my hope in some way. It went well, or so I felt but I don't think I was being social enough. The funny thing about group interviews is that they are flipping difficult even if you're the teeniest bit of an introvert.

the project madness at school
We are currently doing another project at school, for an actual customer. Like a real-deal customer so I've been focusing most of my energy in that. I'm already going to be away for a bit too much from school, so that's where I basically need to focus my energy into. It's also international, as we're doing the project with the exchange students from different countries which I find really nice. It's amazing to see the differences between Finnish and other cultures when it comes down to working in the same project together.

full stack web development course online
Course and online were probably the only words that rang any bells for you, but I'm doing a little extra coding-wise for the school and signed up for an extra coding course. It's been fun and it'll continue over the summer which is also nice. Coding is a funny thing as if you take a break, you'll most likely forget the touch you have for it and we don't have any coding courses at school at the moment.

taking care of our home
I've been on a full Spring cleaning mode lately. We've been selling a bunch of stuff, donated a lot more and I don't know, I'm still left feeling that there is too much stuff in our apartment.

spring flu
The Spring flu took me down for a little while during the past weekend. I had a temperature, my nose is stuffed and I've been coughing my lungs off so life has been pretty fun in the recent past.

finding a new job
I am proud to announce to you that I've landed on a new job. Was about the time already.

handing in my notice
Well duh, it's been a whirlwind of emotions this past almost five years but it was about the time already. If you ask me, I should've done it sooner, feels like a huge weight lifting from my shoulders.

I'm off to see my friend in Oslo after Easter and taking well-deserved time for myself before I'm starting in a new job.

✖ snaps from Whitney Museum of American Art

Sunday, 7 April 2019

Photoframe where Superman is trying to extinquish wildfire by blowing into it in Whitney Museum of American Art
4 photoframes in Whitney Museum of American Art vintage Apple logo, Paramount logo, a car
Whitney Museum Of American Art New York Woman in different colours

✖ basic coding courses for bloggers for free

Thursday, 4 April 2019

OKAY GUYS, it's time to have a reality check. I've been a bit quiet about the whole Pipdig situation and to be honest, I've never used their blog templates, even though I've been a bit tempted to try them out and perhaps when they get their shit together I will eventually try them. And that's my opinion as a blogger.

My opinion as a developer though. Oh boy, what a mess of a code. Or well, the code was pretty itself, or as pretty as a sketchy code can look like.

And that's all I am ever going to say about the whole damn thing.

Today I am here for you. As a blogger to another, to share some free courses of basic coding that are useful for bloggers. Whether you're using Wordpress or Blogger, these skills come handy in future and you know, for everyone to understand better what all the fuss around the code was all about. I do not profit anything from sharing these, I just personally believe that as people who provide content for the Internet, should know the basics on how websites are built.

Codecamy for HTML and CSS
Codecamy is my favourite place to go to when I'm bored. And I'm not even joking, what a geek am I.
In Codecamy you can learn the basics for HTML and CSS. And what are those like in human language? HTML is shortened from HyperText Markup Language, which itself doesn't ring a bell to any human being but it's the code that every website is body and content is build for. A great memory trick is, that HTML is for the insides and CSS is for the looks.
CSS, shortened from Cascading Style Sheets, is the code you want to use to style your website to look like you want.

Basic example from HTML-code:
    <p>Hello World!</p>

This will create a basic website, where states "Hello World!".
HTML tag, in the beginning, tells the website that it's HTML-code that you're using. Body-tag is which wraps all the content that is in the body of your website. They will teach this all on their free course for basics of HTML.

HTML & CSS go pretty much by hand in hand, so all the CSS courses can be found under the same link.

Udemy for PHP
Wordpress rolls on pretty much with PHP, which is stands for Hypertext PreProcessor. It goes hand by hand with databases like MySQLi. This Udemy course for it is free, at least at the moment. I don't know how Udemy's online courses roll, as all my knowledge about this programming language has been learnt in school.
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