Makati City is most known for its central business district, but it also offers an interesting variety of art galleries. We have visited some this 2021 despite the pandemic!
Since the listed galleries below are all located near one another, you can visit them all within a day. This is not an all-inclusive list and we may do another series of visits to different galleries within the city. (There are many more galleries to visit in the area!)
Disclaimer: Before going to the galleries, please check local guidelines for social distancing. Better yet, check in with the galleries via social media if you can book an appointment for viewing.
Do you ever notice that whenever you feel like your world is falling apart, you suddenly turn into a master writer? Your emotions are rapidly translated into words on your paper, and they just flow like a strong unstoppable tidal wave. Emotions are a powerful tool in fostering creativity.
You suddenly have the voice of a thousand people, and you can’t help but pour the words into paper. Powerful emotions throw away our inhibitions. Writing in a vulnerable position expands your range of emotions- from anger to guilt to remorse to jealousy to any other emotion that feel unnatural to us.
When you are happy, you don’t rationalize being happy. When you are happy, you don’t ask questions like, “Why is this happening to me?” or “What did I do to deserve this?”. We accept happiness as a welcome emotion.
For example, when your dear friend arrives at your house with an excited and cheerful face, the first thing you will probably say is “come on in” instead of “what are you doing here?”. We have placed a premium on the “feel good” emotions and neglected to place value on the other emotions on the spectrum. Tough times bring the most uncomfortable of feelings and it is when we start asking questions laden with an unwelcome emotion that we tend to overthink. Because we ruminate on every little thing, we tend to want to keep record of our “sufferings” and “analysis” of our situation. I tell myself that one day I will look back on these and somehow there are lessons that I have written that I didn’t realize then.
For me writing when you are happy provides a completely different written material compared to the writing when I feel terrible. I find a little more character and depth. (This is not to glamorize creative suffering). This is expressing the truth of your experiences. You may compartmentalize your feelings into a specific written material and then let it go. You may feel relieved knowing that this part of you is expressed and preserved.
Writing is a form of therapy. This is the release. This is the catharsis. It helps you probe your own thoughts without a filter. It gives you an opportunity to realize and release these emotions, without having to share it with another person. Of course, a friend (or a therapist) is helpful to unravel your thought patterns but writing (and journaling) allows you to get to know yourself a bit better. It allows you to stay in your feelings and explore the depths of your situation.
Taking an attack where there isn’t one is one of the hardest things that we may be faced with. When we realize that nobody is out there to target us, we free ourselves from the burden of feeling hurt.
Don’t create story lines (mental movies) in your head In other words, stop overthinking. Even the best of us overthink, it’s totally normal, but try not to elaborate on hypothetical scenarios going from point A to point Z. People generally don’t do things to spite other people. If a colleague or a friend has ignored you or was curt with you, don’t jump to conclusions on how they hate you. Usually, there is something going on with them or you caught them in a busy moment.
Be brave and ask If there is something unclear or bothering you, spare no time and ask the person involved immediately. Sometimes leaving things be or ignoring the obvious problem would tear any relationship down over time. Opening-up and being honest, instead of being fake-polite, will clear any misunderstandings between you.
Learn to differentiate a neg from feedback People see things that we can’t with ourselves. It’s called a Blind Spot. and because we are blind sided about ourselves, people offer their feedback. We can be a little unreceptive to this due to a number of reasons. Don’t be defensive. Be careful though, because some people offer up advice and say nasty things under the guise of “constructive criticism”. How to know if the feedback is valid? Take points only from people who you would ask for advice from.
The only opinion that matters is yours People will say a lot of things about you. How you dress, how you cook, what your job is, where you live, what car you drive. All these things are projection. Projection is the mental process by which people attribute to others what is in their own minds. For example, individuals who are in a self-critical state, consciously or unconsciously, may think that other people are critical of them. When a person questions your lifestyle and makes judgement about you, most likely this same thing are things that they want for themselves. Don’t let anybody that resents you, make you question your beliefs about yourself.
Don’t think about it! The last advice is to let the comments pass you and don’t think about it. People will say a lot of things and a lot of those they didn’t even think about. Don’t create a mental space for boring comments and park it in your head. People say things and it’s not that deep. Their opinions are really not about you- it’s about them.
Keeping our emotional health in check is a habit that we must cultivate. One of the ways that we stay emotionally healthy is by acknowledging the existence of our emotions both positive and negative. Unfortunately, we tend to disregard the emotions that make us feel “bad”. Over time we have accustomed ourselves to tune out these “bad feelings” and we’re left with an unfillable void in our mental space.
Feelings Vs. Emotions
Even though Feelings and Emotions are used synonymously, we must know their slight differences.
According to the American Psychological Association (APA), emotion is defined as “a complex reaction pattern, involving experiential, behavioral and physiological elements.”
Feelings, on the other hand is “self-contained phenomenal experience. They are subjective, evaluative, and independent of the sensations, thoughts, or images evoking them.”
For the purpose of this article, feelings and emotions shall be used interchangeably.
Below are eight steps to acknowledge and allow ourselves to feel the broad spectrum of your emotions.
Set aside a time to “feel your feelings”
Daily life can be a struggle and most of the times, it is hard to find time to relax let alone to face our emotions! The idea of confronting our demons and unravelling the reasons why we feel bothered and uncomfortable something seems like a counterintuitive task. Of course, we should just run away with any uncomfortable feeling and call it a day. But there is danger in letting emotions bottle up. Think of it as a daily check-in with yourself. What are the feelings that I experienced today? How did I handle myself in those situations? Is there something that I would change given I feel the same again in the future?
Realize that you are not selfish for feeling your emotions
One of the best gifts you can give yourself (and others) is self-awareness. You are not being selfish for having them, for understanding them, for trying to process them. Your feelings are unique to you and having the awareness of the emotions you feel and the behavior you exhibit is a gift to you and to others.
Don’t focus on the “feeling”, focus on the sensations
This means being conscious of the sensations in your body. If you feel angry, how does the body react? Is it tense? Is your head hot? Is there a lump on your throat? If you’re sad, does your eyes droop a little and feel sleepy? Is your breathing shallow? One technique is called “Body Scan Meditation”. Body scan meditation is a form of mindfulness meditation where you scan your body for tension, tightness, pain, or anything out of the ordinary. This may be difficult to carry out when you’re not used to “checking in” with the body, but this essential tool is helpful in identifying how your body responds to your emotions.
Use an emotion wheel (Plutchik’s wheel of emotions)
Identifying your emotions is a complicated process. Sometimes, you feel happy or lonely. Most of the times you feel a spectrum of feelings all at the same time. Robert Plutchik is a German-born American who created a wheel of emotions to illustrate different emotions. There are also variations of this model that shows specific emotions. Refer to this wheel when you are having a tough time identifying what you really feel.
Explain the feelings to yourself Imagine a friend is feeling the exactly the same way you do. You would stay with your friend and try to make things better, right? Staying with your feelings is an act of choosing to be a friend to yourself. This is not rationalizing your feelings. Explain to yourself the events that led to this, prior to those feelings. This is having a conversation with yourself about how you really feel. Saying things aloud makes it more real and tangible.
Feeling your feelings is good but acting them out to others is not! Remember, you are responsible for your own feelings, only you. Help from a friend is great and could be insightful, but at the end of the day how you process your emotions is up to you. Don’t rally people behind you against another person, nor blame other people. Be accountable with your feelings. Own it.
Thank yourself and let it go Once you’ve sat down and did one or two (or more!) of these exercises, thank yourself for being brave and facing your inner self. Imagine your emotions as a soft tangible object (butterfly, cloud, small wind, etc.) slowly moving away from you. Feelings pass by, they don’t stay long if you’ve acknowledged them head on.
Conclusion: Allowing yourself the necessity of identifying your emotions and allowing to feel them completely will help you understand yourself better. Staying with your feelings is an opportunity to get to know yourself a little better.
Ikea recently opened its first store in the Philippines last November 25. Since then, people have been flocking to check the iconic concept store. It is said that it’s the biggest concept store in the world. Here’s a list of tips and guidelines you can follow to make the most out of your visit to this most-awaited store.
Ikea doesn’t allow for walk-in customer visits to ensure COVID-19 protocols are met. Make sure you arrive early on your appointment date. 1 booking allows for 2 guests.
Arrive on-site and wait in queue
Ikea concept store is located at Mall of Asia Complex, Marina Way, Pasay City. Ushers & marshals lets you wait in line 30-45 mins earlier than your appointment. Expect long lines. There is a priority lane for PWDs, Senior Citizens & pregnant women.
Get in and shop till you drop
Wear comfortable shoes
The concept store is confusingly HUGE and you will really tire your feet out if you’re wearing sandals or heels. However, for PWDs and Senior Citizens, Ikea provides mobility access like wheelchairs.
Jacket/ Warm Clothing is a must
The store is freezing cold! Even if you walk all around, it’s still freezing.
Practice Social distancing
After the COVID-19 hit, I have never been with so many people gathered in one place. SO. MUCH. PEOPLE. The amount of people inside the store was initially overwhelming. Remembering I am fully vaccinated put my mind at ease.
Shopping at IKEA Philippines
4th floor houses the concept stores. Here you’ll find curated pieces for different styles of home & living inspiration. This is also where the Swedish Restaurant is located.
3rd floor is where you can pick & shop the items that you want. You can also check out the items at this floor. You’ll also find here Swedish Food Market, Swedish Bistro, & IKEA Café.
Generally, Ikea is a self-service shop. There is a designated area for packing fragile items before you check-out. Yes, it’s you who will do this. But there are sales assistants to help you with locating items and taking them out on shelves.
Lines are long even at check-out. For customers who purchased 10 items or lesser, a faster lane is provided. Make sure to bring your own shopping bag but shopping bags are available, starts at P40.00.
Dining at IKEA Philippines
The first thing we did upon passing entry was to get in line to eat at the Swedish Restaurant. The line was long and despite the poster warning us to stand in line for 2 hours, we got our seats after 45 mins.
We ended up getting the famous Meatballs, Pomodoro Spaghetti, Marinated Salmon & Salad. The Pomodoro Spaghetti was bland for my taste. The famous meatballs were awesome as expected. What I really liked was the marinated salmon. *chef’s kiss* I was wondering the whole time if the salmon was farmed at Norway (not the best farming practice) and it turns out the seafood they use at IKEA are all sustainably sourced. #GREENFLAG
For the drinks, we had free flowing sparkling juice. There’s a selection of juices to choose from the drinking fountain.
Sparkling Nordic fruit water lemon
Sparkling Nordic fruit water pear
Sparkling Nordic water raspberry
Still Lingonberry drink
I didn’t like the fruit water lemon, but the best one for me was fruit water pear. Coffee is served at the restaurant as well, and it’s also free flowing.
As a self-service store, all customers are encouraged to put away their after-meal plates into a cart that they have provided. This also allows people from the queue to get a table faster.
It’s never easy to start something, especially if it requires us to learn new things and get out of our comfort zone. Be it starting a new business or leaving your current job or starting a new relationship. Below are some ideas that can help you navigate through this paralyzing emotion we call Fear.
Table of Contents
Admit your feelings
Let the worst happen
No such thing as small fears
Be all in
Build a Safety Net
You are not alone
Admit your feelings
Acknowledging the fear is probably the first big step in getting out of it. Let yourself *feel* this tricky emotion. The next step is to ask yourself what it is you are afraid of. There are no right or wrong answers to this. Whatever it is that you are afraid of, name it and know that these fears are totally valid.
This goes hand in hand with the previous one. Allow yourself to unravel. You’re the only one doing it for you. It’s NOT like you go on a stage and air your fears to the public. It’s just you and your fears. Nobody is going to hurt you if you let yourself feel. If anything, bottling up emotions will manifest in other totally unexpected ways.
Let the worst happen
This seems a bit counter-intuitive but bear with me here. While being objective, think about the worst that can happen. You want to start a Youtube vlog? What’s the worst that can happen? People not subscribing? Videos flopping? At the end of the day, you still put out good content and that’s what matters. Think of the worst thing and tell yourself, “SO WHAT?” You’re fine, you still have a roof over your head, and you can still eat. Really, starting something will not automatically capsize your life.
No such thing as small fears
You could be afraid of a butterfly or of losing your job or afraid that your date will ghost you afterwards, whatever it is that’s stopping your tracks because you are afraid, remind yourself that it’s okay to feel that way. These are just feelings; they come and go. No matter how small they are, if it hinders you from moving forward, you have to acknowledge it and not shove them under the carpet. Whether big or small, all those fears are valid. They are all part of you.
Be all in
I’m not saying dive headfirst and YOLO your way into your new venture. I’m saying that once you’ve decided that something is worth pursuing, be there along with your fears. It’s okay to take them with you. It’s actually wise to have a bit of uncertainty, in that way you become more discerning.
Build a Safety Net
A safety net means a safeguard against possible hardship or adversity. Think of it as risk reduction portfolio. A failsafe. Build that safety net first so you can move as freely as possible without having to worry about your basic needs.
You are not alone
Everyone has fears. I have it, your friend has it, your boss has it. It’s a universal human experience. Knowing this, you can seek help to people that inspires you or share your thoughts with people whom you trust. You totally got this!
Can you identify some fears that play out in your life right now? Do they move you into action or paralyze you? Feel free to use the journal templates below that I made just for you. Download it and upload to Instagram stories. You can also tag me if you like @ofloveandbeyond.
Online shopping really changed the game for consumption. Never has purchasing been this easy and quick. Adding to cart and checking out has probably become a habit.
A major revelation occurred to me when I was dumbstruck about what to wear. I have this event that I needed to be, and I thought to myself “I have nothing to wear” while staring into a full, bursting closet.
So I did what any other gal probably would have done, I bought clothes online. It took me a long while to choose what I would want and pressed ‘check out”. The package came days later, and I was happy about the purchase. The day of the event came and I couldn’t even wear the damn thing. It didn’t feel right. So I rummaged beneath the piles of my existing clothes and emerged from it holding pieces of clothing that I eventually wore to the event. Why did I even buy the new clothes in the first place?
It happened to me again with electronics. I bought a charger because I swear, I couldn’t find my existing one. When my new one came, my old charger magically appeared under heaps of paper. My point is, when you think you need something, instead of falling into the habit of online shopping, look first into your existing collection of items and extend your resourcefulness.
It may mean the ideal you have in your head could be different than the one you already own, but you can tweak it in a way that suits your needs. Online shops present their items as shiny and as ideal as possible. With a little resourcefulness and creativity, we can also *make* our things as shiny and as functional as possible.
I know it’s easier to just buy stuff online rather than tidying up your closet and checking every item you own. At some point, being resourceful and taking account of things you own, will be the only sustainable antidotes for impulsive consumerism.
Letting go could be hard, but holding on could also harm us. Like a handful sand, the more you try to grasp it, the harder it is to maintain it. Better to just let the tides take them back to where they belong to.
So why do we hold on to things that do not serve us, memories that unearth our pain and fantasies we keep replaying in our heads?
This is how we cope. We think it makes our lives easier. In reality, it keeps us prisoned in a blanket of safety, a blanket that’s familiar, a blanket of hope. These blankets are just illusions. They may make us feel safe but they actually turn our gaze from accepting the cold hard truth that these blankets do not exist.
The only remedyis to see the things, situations and people as what and who they really are. We have to see so that we know exactly what things we are making space for. Once the veil of illusion is lifted, we start to unravel parts of us that are attached to the past.
The hardest part is the sense of loss. When we sit within the void, we may be able to notice the things we want to bring within us, the things that can nurture us.
Take this moment to write down 1-3 things that you think you can let go of- things, relationships, or habits. Don’t overthink it, jot whatever comes to your mind. Write them down and set them free.
Imagine this: You have so many different items lying around the house, unused and collecting dust. Suddenly, you have this strong urge to give them away. But, how do you actually donate your stuff?
Usually donation drives need a minimum number of items or specific items for donation, not to mention the documentation for it. You may opt to go to the donation sites like Segunda Mana and Goodwill, but boxing bulk items and organizing them can be a whole ordeal.
You start to think if there’s an easier alternative like “Here’s my stuff, you can take them.”Well, here’s how:
Facebook Decluttering Groups
There are a lot of decluttering groups on Facebook. You post the items that you want to donate, and wait if there are people who want to “adopt” the items you no longer need. Most of the times, the items that I find negligible turns out to be a big thing for others.
You can donate any kinds of stuff, from vacuum cleaners, to barely-used make up, school supplies, clothes, you can even donate food. You can also post in a “Looking For” thread, in which you ask for a specific item, and see if someone is willing to donate theirs.
Here’s a list of Facebook groups that I have used to declutter my items:
IMPORTANT TIPS for decluttering via Facebook groups:
Only donate items that are still functioning and useable
I know you want to lessen the burden of material things you have, but make sure that the person receiving the items will enjoy the things you donate. That means if the items are broken and unsalvageable, it’s not for donation- it’s for disposal.
There are still lots of people who are taking advantage of people’s generosity. Some Facebook groups have the option of posting anonymously, so you as the donor can protect your privacy. Never share any personal information that are not relevant to the donation process. As an added safety measure, you can look up the recipient’s name and check if there are any “scammer alert” posts before you proceed with the donation.
Be polite and accommodating
Just because you are in a position to give away things that does not entitle you to be condescending. Always treat people with respect.
Remember that the donee must shoulder the delivery fees
It’s common practice for the recipient to shoulder (and arrange) the delivery of the donated items (You can book using Grab, Lalamove or Mr. Speedy). Most decluttering groups will discourage that the donor cover the delivery expenses. Hence, it’s advisable to choose the recipient that is nearest your location.
Alwaysgive with a happy heart
The feeling of giving something makes you feel just as much joy as receiving something. Check-in with yourself if your intentions for donating comes from a place of generosity.
That’s it! Let me know in the comments how your donation experience has been. If you have questions feel free to comment or connect with me on social media.
Hey friends! I am so thrilled to announce the launch of my personal & lifestyle blog, lizbethzaguirre.com!
The aim of this blog is reach out and hopefully resonate with people who want to make their lives more interesting through the exploration of art, culture, self-love & personal development.
I believe that the best relationship that you can have is the one you have with yourself.
I am in no way in the “best version of myself” yet. I believe that with the right support, each of us has a capacity to strive even further, to be a little bit kinder and a little bit wiser as we navigate our lives.
I’m mostly focused on writing, so I suggest you subscribe to my mailing list. In that way you get an email update once I post something on here, but you can also connect with me on my Instagram.