5 Ways To Have Better Sleep

Sleep is definitely one of life’s priceless luxuries when you’re an adult. While a good sleep is what everyone needs, it’s definitely not something that’s easy to achieve. This is sometimes due to work, stress or even…Netflix. If you find yourself tossing and turning at night and getting very poor quality sleep, we may have some remedies that could assist you in getting a good night’s sleep.

To avoid sleep deprivation and getting adequate rest, try these:

THIS WORKS (Sleep Plus + Pillow Spray)
This spray just does it for me, especially when I need to relax because it really does put me in a deep sleep.

All you need to do is just shake the bottle and then spray it on your pillow. What you realise is that your pillow linen releases a gentle lavender and chamomile scent which is calming. For some people, this works so well that it puts some to sleep right away. If not, it definitely helps to relax and calm you down. This is definitely one of the best forms of aromatherapies.

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This Works (Sleep Plus + Pillow Spray) bottle is priced at RM158 which is pretty steep but you could also check out This Works (Deep Sleep Pillow Spray) which is priced at RM99. Product is available at Sephora.

P/S: This could also be a really good present for a friend!


Easy Stretches Before Sleep
Not talking about vigorous stretches but low-impact, gentle stretching in the evening can help with better sleep. Think of it as doing yoga while wearing your pjs. A friend shared the idea with me and i thought it would be good to give it a try. So, I have found five different form of stretches  and few more which I’ve picked up from yoga classes. Results? A quick 20-30 minutes stretches every evening has made me feel more relaxed and ready to dive into bed.

open-lizardImage: POPSUGAR Photography / Louisa Larson

 

Non-Caffeinated Tea
Enjoy a relaxing moment on the sofa in the evening with a cup of tea (if you like tea). If you’ve had a long stressful day, coming home and just enjoying a cup of tea is pretty relaxing itself. Every now and then, I enjoy a good cup of caffeinated free tea in the evening while reading a book in bed. Here are few suggestions which you can check out in your local stores:

  • OSK Japanese Green Tea
  • YOGI TEAS – Bedtime Tea (available at BMS Organics)
  • Twinings – Camomile, Honey & Vanilla, Lemon & Ginger, Pure Camomile, Pure Peppermint
  • T2 – Lemongrass and Ginger Teabag (outlet in Publika)

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My personal favourites are Twinings’ Lemon & Ginger, Pure Peppermint and OSK Japanese Green Tea which I love the taste of the tea, plus the prices are pretty reasonable.

Tip: If you’re having Twinings’ Lemon & Ginger, add honey in to it. It taste so soothing and great!


Silk Bedding
A friend recently shared this with me as she said purchasing silk bedding was the best decision ever! Sleeping on the silk bedding is beneficial for you and for your health.
Such as it is good for allergies sufferers (as silk is naturally hypoallergenic), it keeps you cool as it helps to turn down the heat and keeps you hydrated.

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It does sound like a luxury but there are some brands which are pretty affordable (keep a look out in department stores like Aeon and Parkson) with mark down prices. If you are lucky you could buy it for RM100++ or less. You can explore brands like Akemi or Jean Pierre. Once you get the sheets, you may not want to get out of your bed. Ever.


Essential Oil Diffuser
Aromatherapy is one of the best forms of therapy. It brings out a soothing and relaxing bit to your life. It helps eliminate stress and calms you. One to two hours before your bed time, make your room conditions cool, dark (warm lights) and quiet. Next, switch on your diffuser and relax away on your bed.

Our editor’s favourite essential oil diffuser is Young Living Essential Oils. She had mentioned that she finds it very hard to fall asleep and she started using Lavender essential oil on the diffuser and she found herself in a deep sleep!

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Although Young Living Essential Oils is on a steeper price, you may also explore Muji’s Aroma Diffuser which is priced at RM229 – RM349. Or if you have an oil burner, you may want to try Aesop’s Anouk Oil Burner Blend essential oil which diffuses floral and citrus smell priced around RM130.

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9 Signs Of A True Friend

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Rod Stewart once sang, “Keep smiling, keep shining. Knowing you can always count on me for sure. That’s what friends are for.” That song remains as one of many anthems about friendship. As we all know, friendships, more often than not, are very special and they’re a bond that remains through time because friends are everything.

Unless they’re fake friends, which I’m sure we’ve all had a fair share of but as you grow older, and hopefully wiser, you’ll come to recognise who your real friends are. My friends are special to me as these group of wonderful people are the my chosen family. So, what makes a good friend and how do you know if you have real, true friends?

  1. They don’t keep track of favours. Anything they’ve done for you is out of their own goodwill and not for you to owe them.
  2. Real friends will make you feel good about yourself and remind you the good things that you may not see or believe.
  3. He/she is not an enabler and will tell you when what you’re doing is wrong. No matter how harsh they may sound.
  4. A good friend is always present. They’ll put their phone down and really listen when they’re with you and will always pay attention to your needs.
  5. They are there for you at your lowest and have never given up on you, even if you’ve given up on yourself
  6. They accept you for who you are instead of criticizing you for your shortcomings.
  7. A true friend will love you unconditionally, and they’ll show this through their actions.
  8. They respect you and vice versa.
  9. They’re trustworthy and you can trust them with anything without worry.

A Beginner’s Guide To Podcast

Here’s the thing, I was never really into podcasts till beginning of this year. I’m a full-time mother who’s constantly on the go and I just want to keep myself up to date on many things! I still like to feel relevant. I can tune into radio stations but I hate long commercials.

Anyway, it was just a thought combined with an influence from a friend who shared a few recommendations with me. I started listening to Serial (season 1) and I was hooked! From time to time, I’ll just explore and listen to many others to narrow down what I find interesting. It’s very similar to what music genre you like, you need to explore to figure out what you prefer best because not all podcasts are the same.

Now, if you’re thinking about it and have no clue where to start, let’s begin by opening up your Podcast app (the other perfect one would be Overcast app for iPhones; Android users may try Podcast Addict). Follow by typing in the names which I’ll be suggesting below into the search bar.

Here’s a line-up for you to kickstart your podcast journey!

  1. Girlboss Radio with Sophia Amoruso
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    You may or may not be familiar with this name. Sophia Amoruso founded Nasty Gal (a women’s fashion retailer) and Netflix did a series based on #Girlboss, which is Sophia’s best-selling memoir of her life. In Girlboss radio, Sophia interviews women bosses who’ve made success, asking them about their past, how their businesses started and how it’s grown in their career life. Very inspirational!
  2. Strong Opinions Loosely Held 
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    This audio podcast is by Refinery29 and is hosted by Elisa Kreisinger. The podcast discusses on today’s modern culture, feminism, talking to other women in the show to broaden perspective and sharing strong opinions. The first episode she kicked off with the Kardashians was very entertaining, insightful and well-spoken!
  3. FAT MASCARA
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    For all the beauty lovers, this is definitely a must for us! This audio podcast is hosted by two well-known editors – Jessica Matlin (TeenVogue) & Jennifer Goldstein (Marie Claire). From famous influencers to your favourite makeup artist experts, they interview and receive advice from well-known figures, discuss whats in rend and share beauty tips. Absolutely fun and just love it!
  4. My Dad Wrote A Porno
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    This is one of the best podcasts out there. If you need some humour in your life, this is definitely a must listen to. This is hosted by Jamie Morton together with two other friends James Cooper and Alice Levine. Jamie Morton reads out new chapters of erotic fiction novels “Belinda  Blinked” which was written by his father. They talk about the moments of the chapter and also have invited celebrities to talk about it, like Elijah Wood, Michael Sheen and Daisy Ridley.
  5. Anna Faris is Unqualified
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    Hosted and created by comedian actress Anna Faris where she was inspired to create the podcast after listening to Serial! Her podcast is pretty easy to listen to. She does interviews with celebrities and personal phone calls to listeners, chatting to them about relationships and dating. If you’ve been a fan of Anna Faris, give this a go!

Favourite Sunscreens

We’re going to talk about one of the most important skincare products – SUNCREEN! We know some of you guys love this andthere are some who just hate it. Like Hollywood’s beauty icon Jennifer Aniston’s said in a recent interview with Harper’s Bazaar :

“I hate it. I’ve been experimenting with ones that don’t make you look like you have Kabuki makeup on or like a corpse. I understand we’re saving our skin, but they gotta figure that stuff out. Who wants to be in the sun and not look cute?”


Jen is right! We definitely do not want to look like we have Kabuki makeup on or like a corpse! We know that purchasing sunscreen (the good ones that suits your skin) are expensive and you really have to find the right one for your skin.

Whether or not your foundation or BB cream has SPF, we believe it is better not to skip the sunscreen step. We have compiled some sunscreens which will blend well with makeup just for you to check it out and get yourself a consultation or test it out at their stores or counters!

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KIEHL’S – Ultra Light Daily UV Defense SPF 50 PA++++
This sunblock is one of the best selling product in Kiehl’s! With its oil-free lotion texture, you can still wear makeup on top of it. It gives a matte finish and it feels refreshing on skin.

Kiehl’s – Ultra Light Daily UV Defense SPF 50 PA++++, RM155, available at Kiehl’s outlets.

 

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CLINIQUE – Even Better City Block Anti-Pollution SPF40/PA+++
The product’s name sounds pretty intense but it does one heck of a job especially if you’re living in a sunny, humid country like Malaysia! It works well as a base, no clogging of pores, non-sticky and it applies easily all over the face. This sunscreen works perfectly for all skin types.

CLINIQUE – Even Better City Block Anti-Pollution SPF40/PA+++, RM160, available at Clinique outlets or counters.

 

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SUPERGOOP! – Everyday Sunscreen SPF 50 with Cellular Response Technology
Holly Thaggard, founder of Supergoop wanted to create a sunscreen that’s non sticky, tacky or smells messy, one that you’ll want to wear every single day! It does its job keeping the skin from wrinkles, blemishes caused by UV rays. It’s water resistant and oil-free, which is also perfect to bring along with you on your beach vacations. Also, it has a very nice citrusy smell.

SUPERGOOP! – Everyday Sunscreen SPF 50 with Cellular Response Technology, RM143 (7.5fl oz), available at Sephora.

 

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Shiseido Extra Smooth Sun Protection Cream N Broad Spectrum SPF 38
If you have an oily T-zone, combination skin or prefer semi matte finish – this may be the sunscreen for you. Many of Shiseido’s customers stick around for the brand’s sunscreen. Their sunscreen products blends well with moisturisers. It’s also non-greasy, smooth and easy to apply.

Shiseido Extra Smooth Sun Protection Cream N Broad Spectrum SPF 38, RM218, available at Lazada / Shiseido counters.

 

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DERMALOGICA – super sensitive shield spf30
This heavenly sunscreen delivers UV protection without unwanted oiliness or chalkiness. Easy on skin, reduces inflammation, irritation, redness and sensitivity. This is definitely ideal for our girlfriends with sensitive skin. The downside is that the bottle is only 50ml with a very steep price.

DERMALOGICA – super sensitive shield spf30, RM284, available at Dermalogica outlets.

 

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LANIEGE – Marshmallow Sun Cushion SPF50+ PA+++
This unique packaging is different from all the other sunscreens. Just like Laniege’s famous BB Cushion, they recently released Sun Cushion which contains Japanese apricot extract and skin soothing powder to protect the skin. It is convenient to carry around wherever you go. One thing you should know is that this product has a newly formulated Water ScreenTM technology that maintains the moisture balanced on the skin.

LANIEGE – Marshmallow Sun Cushion SPF50+ PA+++ (10g), RM110, available in Laniege outlets/stores.

 

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GLOSSIER – Invisible Shield Sunscreen SPF35
If you still haven’t heard about the Glossier hype, you’re missing out! Glossier is the beauty brand that’s about to take over the world, slowly! This divine sunscreen formula absorbs faster than your best serum. It’s called Invisible Shield sunscreen because it is invisible on all skin types and tones! Our editor from Buffer Daily swears by this sunscreen (read here for the review). This product is not available in Malaysia yet unless you have awesome family/friends living in the U.S who could ship it over to to try, it will be great!

GLOSSIER – Invisible Shield Sunscreen SPF35 (30ml), $34, available in Glossier website.

 

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LAURA MERCIER – Flawless Skin Daily Face Shield SPF40 UVB/UVA
If you have combination, dry or sensitive/acne-prone skin, this may be the suitable sunscreen for you! Non sticky, runny liquid, lightweight, tinted and overall it gives the skin feeling silky smooth. You would not feel like you have an extra layer on your skin. It’s also great if you want to apply make up over it.

LAURA MERCIER – Flawless Skin Daily Face Shield SPF40 UVB/UVA (30ml), RM232, available on Lazada or Laura Mercier outlets.

 

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CLARINS – UV Plus Anti-Pollution, UV Plus SPF50
Its formula is rich in plant extracts that gives a clear and light cream which is pretty suitable for all skin types. This sunscreen also helps to prevent your skin from ageing, which will make your skin look and feel younger, fresh and radiant. The light cream also spreads on your face easily, as well as drying up quickly.

CLARINS – UV Plus Anti-Pollution, UV Plus SPF50 Blue (30ml), RM185, available in Clarins outlets.

 

Your skin absorbs everything it touches, it’s important to be super choosy about your sunscreen! Let’s fight anti-aging, fine lines, wrinkles, all at once! If you have any great sunscreen suggestions, please feel free to share it with us too!

 

 

 

 

 

Self-Love: 10 Simple Ways To Love Yourself Better

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Growing up has taught me a lot of valuable lessons, and the one I feel is most significant would be the importance of self-love. I had a pretty awesome childhood and did all the many things that most kids would but my parents never taught me the true value of self-love, which is fine because I got to learn about it throughout my 20s. But it would have been great to know that loving yourself doesn’t come as easy as loving someone else, or loving the idea of someone else loving you.

Now in my early 30s, after many ups and more downs than I would have prefered, I’m proud to say that besides my own daughter, there’s no one else I love more than my own self. It took a lot of practice and patience, but once you get to a place where you love yourself unconditionally, nothing or no one can stop you. Here are some simple ways to apply some self-love to your life:

  1. Friend cleansing – Nothing worse for your soul than to be surrounded by toxic people. Pay close attention to how certain people treat you and the contribution they bring.
  2. Remind yourself of all the things you love about yourself – It’s extremely easy to look in the mirror and pick out all the things you dislike but it’s also important to be kind. Face your weaknesses and flaws because it can really help the self-healing process. Repeating affirmations can also help!
  3. Let go – No matter who you are, we have all done things we wish we didn’t or done things we’ve come to regret in life, but forgiving yourself for all those things can help you move forward. If there’s someone or something in your past that really hurt you, it’s important to understand why and then only you’re able to forgive.
  4. Be happy with where you are – We all have dreams and sometimes, we’re not exactly where we thought we’d be in life, but that’s okay! Get rid of that negative filter and live in the moment. Be appreciative of how far you’ve come compared to the past few years.
  5. Form good relationships – You should surround yourself with people that see who you aspire to be. Not everyone may share the same goal or point of view as you, but it’s important to find the right people that understand you.
  6. Spend some time alone – You don’t always have to be out on Friday nights. It’s okay to say no to social calls and just stay home. After an exhausting work week, some down time is exactly what you may need.
  7. Exercise – Not to lose weight but to be healthy in general. It’s good for you physically, mentally and emotionally.
  8. Spend time with the people you love – Make an effort to see family and friends instead of just liking their photos on social media.
  9. Treat yourself – You’re a grown adult that works hard to stay ahead in life so, from time to time, treat yourself. Get that new bag you’ve been thinking about or a plane ticket to somewhere you can relax and unwind.
  10. Do favours – Help someone, do something good without expecting something else in return.

“Love yourself first and everything else falls into line. You really have to love yourself to get anything done in this world.”
– Lucille Ball

THINGS WE LOVE: October Favourites

Joanne Loves: Hourglass Veil Mineral Primer SPF15

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Two of my friends wouldn’t stop praising the Veil Mineral Primer by Hourglass and how amazing it is. So, once I was done with my old primer, I made sure to rush down to Sephora and grab myself a bottle of this seemingly amazing primer. After first use, I was already impressed and probably will never change to another one.

Here’s why I love it:

  • Love how the texture is silky smooth, lightweight and sits on my skin well, even after I’ve put my foundation on.
  • It helps with keeping my makeup intact all day and controls the shine on my face (especially t-zone area).
  • Highly recommended to combination/oily skin.

The price for Hourglass Veil Mineral Primer is definitely on the steep end (RM259), but it’s really worth every cent considering how long the bottle will last. Remember, a little goes a long way.

Product is available in Sephora.

Qing Loves: Real Techniques Miracle Complexion Sponge

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I wouldn’t call myself a makeup guru – I tend to keep my daily makeup routine as simple as possible. Using multiple makeup brushes was too much of a hassle for me, but I didn’t want to apply product using my bare hands either. So, using sponges was an obvious solution.
Everyone’s heard of the Beauty Blender, but after reading a number of reviews, a second name kept appearing again and again.
Enter the Real Techniques Miracle Complexion Sponge. Many called the Real Techniques sponge a great dupe for the Beauty Blender, with some saying it was even better! I had to try it for myself. And it sells at a fraction of the price of a Beauty Blender.
This is what I found:
  • Blends out evenly without absorbing too much product
  • Versatile – can blend both large and precise areas
  • Can be used damp for a fresh and dew look or dry for a matte finish
  • Easy to clean and maintain

The Real Techniques Miracle Complexion Sponge can be purchased online.

 

Jiar Loves: Jack Black Intense Therapy Lip Balm SPF25

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Up until very recently, I never about the need to wear SPF on my lips. I know, I’m clueless! Anyway, when I heard this, I wasted no time and quickly began my research. After reading countless listicles that suggested plenty, I decided to try the Jack Black Intense Therapy Lip Balm. I can’t tell if it’s protecting my lips from the sun but here’s why I love it:

  • Its thick but non-sticky consistency. A little goes a long way with this tube!
  • The product holds its own. I don’t have to reapply very often, even after I’ve eaten!
  • The scent is glorious, I chose the black tea & raspberry.

As I learn more about the importance of protecting our skin from sun damage, I find myself investing in more products with SPF. The lip skin is so delicate that we should not forget to protect it as well.

Shop for this at Lazada

Emma Loves: Glossier Invisible Shield Daily Sunscreen+ SPF35

Y’all, I’m a firm believer in spreading word about skincare that works and one that I need to preach about this month is the phenomenal everyday sunscreen by Glossier. Believe the hype because Glossier is about to get you excited over wearing sunscreen. It’s a little hard to believe this considering SPF has a very greasy feel and has a ridiculous white tint that doesn’t agree with women of colour like me. Here’s why you should immediately throw out your old sunscreen and replace it with Glossier’s winner of a product:

  • It’s not white! Its gel-like form is completely clear, making it suitable for EVERY SINGLE SKIN TONE out there. This alone is already why Glossier is winning.
  • It absorbs extremely quick, which is a convenient factor for those looking to apply makeup right after.
  • It’s not greasy at all but if you have oily skin, I suggest patting some powder on after. Perhaps the Wowder?
  • There is a fresh smell to this sunscreen. If you’re not into scented products, this may not be your cup of tea but trust me, the citrus aroma is only light and not overpowering in the slightest
  • The packaging is light and super cute!
  • Its got all the good stuff like aloe leaf extracts, Vitamin E, Vitamin P and brocolli to keep your skin protected from pollution and free radicals.
  • Its broad spectrum SPF 35 shields your skin from harmful UVA/UVB rays

It’s a little pricey thanks to the ridiculous exchange rates at the moment but it’s really worth your hard-earned money. Especially if taking care of your skin is priority.

Cop your Glossier Invisible Shield Daily Sunscreen+ on Glossier’s website.

I Stopped Using Dating Apps For A Year. This Is What I Learned.

I am not ashamed of meeting someone through a dating app.

In fact, I fell head over heels and had an ‘almost relationship’ with the first guy I talked to on Tinder. We had a tumultuous and toxic relationship and I have no regrets. I still find a way to sneak his name into conversations he has no business being in and if I had a chance to do it all over again, I would. So, yeah. I’ve made my point – I’m all for dating apps.

But after being on it for as long as I have, you tend to miss the traditional way of being courted or starting a conversation with someone. There’s nothing charming about ‘Yeah, I swiped right and we hung out’ after several tries.

There are pros and cons, obviously. I mean it’s nice to meet men you would never end up meeting in “real life”. But it’s not really nice to feel like you’re really having a good time with someone only to see a new Tinder notification message pop up on his phone.

F***k it, I thought. I uninstalled the app and made a deal with myself that I will not resort to it no matter how lonely I get.

So, if you’re looking for a Cinderella-esque happy ending where I meet someone across the room and he walks up to me and asks me out and we have an amazing first night together and now I am picking out wedding invitation designs, you are wrong. Here’s the brutal truth:

#1 Guys on dating apps and real life are pretty much the same
If you think good, respectful and worthy men live on a magical island only accessible by a boat that you’d have to sell your leg and arm to get on then you must be outta yo’ mind. Get real, people. We are all swimming in the same pool. That guy you’re eyeing from across the bar probably has Tinder, Bumble, OK Cupid and Christian Mingle on his phone. And based on an experience I can’t seem to erase, a guy you met by chance is capable of doing the same douchey things as the guy you met on a dating app. Nobody is safe.

#2 It’s not the same out there anymore
This goes for girls and guys. Nobody approaches anybody anymore. We all hide behind our screens. We all would rather swipe or double tap on a photo than walk up to a stranger we are attracted to. I get it, real life rejection is tough. But you know what’s also tough? Ghosting. Waiting for a text that’s never going to come. But that’s the easier and less painful option so we do it. It sucks, but it’s true.

#3 You might relapse and that’s ok
Sometimes you prefer to stay in your nasty a** jammies and binge watch Netflix all night until a Meg Ryan movie inspires you to find true love but you can’t be bothered to get out of bed so you pull out your phone and start swiping. The struggle to be dating-app free is real. It’s just so much easier to meet people without having to look like a reasonable human being. I think it’s ok to relapse. Delete and re-download as much as you’d like, I say.

#4 You deal with a lot less bulls**t from men
All those nights you spent waiting for them to text back, arguing with them about things you didn’t know you could argue about, and wondering when you will see them are all going to vanish. You’ll have so much free time from all the dating drama you’ve escaped that you’ll pick up a new hobby you never thought you’d be interested in. Now doesn’t that sound nice?

#5 You might or might not fall in love
I suppose this article would be more inspiring if I had found someone to call my own without technology’s help. I’m sorry to disappoint but I didn’t. I did not get into a relationship. I did not fall in love with someone. I did not meet Prince Charming. But, I did worry less, I travelled more, I met interesting people along the way, I was 101% focused on my work, and I can confidently say I was really happy with myself. That’s what I learned and that was OK.