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5 Ways To Survive Writer’s Block

Writer’s block – inevitably every content creator’s biggest nightmare. Your creative mojo unexpectedly embarks on a ridiculously long vacation and refuses to hand you inspiration on a golden platter.

The other day I helplessly stared at a blank computer screen unable to frame a proper sentence for my blog (you can imagine the frustration level). On the same day, my rather impatient brother accused me of being too uptight, well I wanted him to eat a decent toasted sandwich (thank you very much for being a good sister) and he was running late (again). But his statement did strike a cord!

I had a fun conversation with myself which went something like this “You’re holding on too tight to get that perfect article even before you touch a keyboard. Loosen Up Sister!”

Believe me, it’s a formula for disaster if you start writing with an intention to get everything just right at the first step (pure stupidity!). I find myself doing it sometimes, and later on hitting my head against the wall thinking: “When are you going to learn Rahma?”  Before exploring some solutions, here is why Writer Block magically befalls upon the best of content creators.

  1. Lack of ideas.
  2. You have great ideas, but not enough content – Lack of Research
  3. You have ideas & content, but unable to communicate your thoughts –Perfectionism

If you’re a regular blogger, this hustle is not new and your passion for writing wobbles under the gun. Therefore, I decided to share some useful tips based on my experience to tackle this combat like a badass storytelling pro.

1. REFUEL YOUR TANK WITH INSPIRATION

Creativity is slightly delicate, to get that motor running fast without any harsh brakes, we need to feed it with new ideas, revamped old thoughts, maybe odd fantasies (and that’s how golden eggs are delivered, lol!). The obvious choice is reading more – visit your favorite blogs or pick up your local newspaper & magazines (and by that, I mean a cosmopolitan where surprisingly I find pretty cool ideas relate to Dubai & its Epic lifestyle spectrum). 

Why not travel to a different world with a new book by your favorite author? Stick to stand alone novels only, you might get pulled into a demanding series!

Not a fan of reading? Visual content (maybe a TED talk on youtube) or experiment with a quirky mood board (Honestly, Pinterest is so unappreciated around this part of the globe) can also brew up some freshness during a breakdown. 

2. UNPLUG YOURSELF

Sometimes a distraction free zone instigates originality when your eyes are NOT fixed on the phone seated right beside your laptop and notifications building up your anxiety slowly. As a blogger, I can safely say, we are obsessed with our phones, forever anxious about emails and fixated on social media. In fact, I took good 3 hours to jot down all points for some articles, something easily achieved in 1.5 hours, if I wasn’t in a back and forth combat between both the screens. A strict workflow delivers, no seriously, download that chrome extension now (and block out all social media sites) and focus on one task at a time – be more productive for 50 mins with 10 mins break.

3. IGNORE THE INTRODUCTION

As I mentioned before, high expectations with the first draft is a complete Nada! Sometimes, agonizing over the perfect first line or an impeccable introductory paragraph blocks creative thinking. Write as if you’ve already introduced the idea and don’t be afraid to get the good stuff rolling out first, then later come back to frame it. Before you realize, you’ll have a completed post that’s only missing an intro.

Do not act as an editor from the start, be a writer –  draft plenty and edit finally.

4. BE COUNTER PRODUCTIVE

Sometimes to get those golden eggs, you need to let go and move on to something new. Rather than relying upon comfort food, jumbo caffeine shots and ‘Netflix & Chill’ because you can’t write, direct your positive energy on something productive, revisit older blog posts, correct links & tags, basically revolve your task around some blogging affairs!

End of the day: ‘You didn’t give up on your blog, instead pampered your little baby!’

Stay attached to your blog always! It’s not going to help if you put yourself down for having a block. It happens to the best of writers! So just take a break and have a KitKat (haha!)

5. RECORD YOUR CONTENT

Prior to working on a new idea, it’s always good to gain some insights, read a few articles on it – research is the key. Before your fingers do the work, exercise your brain in the relevant topic. 

While brainstorming ideas, some prefer to scribble down points on a paper, I find recording my thoughts & research (one-on-one imperfect conversation with my readers, no heavy vocabulary, no grammatically correct sentences – a simple conversation) considerably useful. My first draft is a voice over which then gets converted into text and later checked for grammatic/spelling errors. Sometimes a blank page gets filled by a simple chat with yourself. 

6. SURROUNDINGS MATTER

When can you expect the best work from a writer? Most probably when he/she is feeling! You see, creativity operates broadly in conjunction with your emotions. An angry writer can pen down some sincerely moving posts (hence, my Behind the scenes of Dubai work life post) while a cheerful, happy & content one (in my case, a tummy filled) blogger can bring out their creative mojo with a favorite cup of coffee and a clean desk. 

Writing is a passion, but I take my two year old blog as an open book Literature exam, where each new post is better than the last one in terms of my writing style. I constantly try to learn the difference between passive & active style, adverbs &adjectives and more importantly how to find my voice in between all this commotion. 

Cheers Dubai,

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How is Anxiety Born?

So freakishly anxiety is the biggest buzz around town these days, maybe we realized how the devil operates or simply some movies draw out the compassion within us. I remember a time when I couldn’t even pronounce A-N-X-I-E-T-Y, let alone understand how these little 7 letters may define half of my life. Just a few years ago, we didn’t have counselors wandering the school doors or articles written about how devasting social anxiety can make a person. Anxiety was more of a taboo word.

See I faced social awkwardness all my life but you can’t label me as a timid introvert, weirdly there are days I want to conquer the world and wanderlust magic is all around, the power extrovert plays horrifying games with people like me. We, humans blindly associate anxiety with sad lonely introverts, but that’s not entirely true, unfortunately, our behaviors & personality can’t be broken down to two cold cliché categories, even the best of us could be hiding a storm inside.

Anxiety can’t be boxed up as a mental issue, sometimes it arrives with physical torture too because even we can’t explain that god trenching pain of not being able to perform the normal day to day tasks like other folks. You clench your fist, roll up like a ball on the bed and let your eyes do the heavy lifting at night with an awful ache buried in your heart.

So how does it start? Why? When? With years of sharing my life with this pitfall, I did pick up a few things. For some of us, it all begins as we learn to take our first steps in the world, but denied an access to all negative emotions. Our naive loving parents, lock up anger, tears, and hatred as forbidden modes of expression, not realizing they were the ones who opened the doors to this hell called anxiety. As those feelings are pushed within, you learn to fake a smile early in life.

As you walk through the doors of a school and see a teacher, the so-called ‘second mother’ hit your friend, the first taste of public humiliation torments you inside out. The best way is to hide behind others, neither asking questions nor answering them. See, you just never want to be that kid who stood in front of the entire class, so breaking barriers and rising to horizons were just dysfunctional metaphors. You do everything to dodge that confrontation, so verbal communication took a downturn here. The insecurities of being judged & ridiculed forces you to avoid eye contact & in fact ignore the whole “talking spree”.

Years pass by, your preferred choice to be in the background remained intact. Shying away from the stage, satisfied with the smallest role in the school play or pretending to be sick at a school assembly, you constantly stressed over how easy it was for the other girls to draw all the limelight and shine like a star.

While you love behind the scenes work and may create the best powerpoint presentation, narrating the same to your class in the presence of an authority, breaks your heart even before you plug in the slideshow. Already convinced your last night’s pep talk is a major fail, you speak as fast as possible in a monotone and rush off to a bathroom stroll realizing no amount of hard work and pep talks were enough.

Denied opportunity to express and a constant fear of being publicly grilled for your actions, you manifest a rather impressive defense mechanism called ‘secret keeping’. You hide your overly sensitive side to snotty comments with an aloof exterior. And unintentionally bury your empathetic self due to lack of words and expression.

We don’t realize but those years are tinted with a personal destruction, either you stay alone locked up in a room becoming that ‘voiceless anti-social bird’ or that power extrovert challenges you to make friends. Miraculously, you do find others, you always do, people who portray care for you but don’t really understand the real you, truth is we don’t understand ourselves and our not so good communicating function makes things worse.

Little bite size pieces of past experiences can condition human beings to be more anxious and triggers a much horrible path to empty loneliness. All humans face anxiety from time to time, but some of us due to unhealthy overwhelming stress, lack the control and instead feed the demon.

Disclaimer: The above mentioned is through my personal experience.

As my last Instagram post suggest, I would be writing with a personal touch. 

Until, Next Time, Love Rahma


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How To Ace a Media Event, If You’re an Introvert.

how to start great smal talk in dubai events if you are an introvert dubai media invites blogger tips to network (1)Not in a million years, I imagined being a blogger, would turn the tables around and get me cracking up with a network of such talented individuals. Though social anxiety drove me mad all my childhood, I always consider invites to Press Events an extra bonus for all the hard work. But much to my excitement, the introvert me, always gets anxious before a media event, attending places with a large audience often triggers the wild ‘Let’s run out of here’ dilemma inside.

Across the social predicament, I’ve picked up some bits and pieces to be a Pro-Social butterfly during an event and make genuine connections on the go, relatable to all introverts. Gift wrapped all the knowledge into a 6 pointer post for all my newbies in this industry.

Dress to Impress

A fact is if you are in the public eye, your dressing matters, irrespective of your niche and content. So rather than experimenting, select an attire which reflects your personality, fits into your comfort level (in short, outfits that boost up your confidence) and brings out clean happy vibes. Truth is, first impressions do matter and your ensembles are majorly judged by Media Agencies, Founders, and PR firms.

If you are into Fashion blogging, or somewhere in that industry, never under dress yourself, you are a live example of your drop dead chic Instagram Feed.

Do your homework

Take a look at who else will be at the event and plan to meet those who might share something in common (or someone you find less intimidating). Before entering any venue, trick your mind with a challenge to network with at least five new people on your own, this gives the disciplined introvert something to strike off as the event progresses.

To be a social butterfly, stop being the shy wingman of the one person you already know, rather be a vibrant smiling face, who isn’t afraid to say hello first.

Introduce yourself Digitally

Your first event (a room filled with random strangers, you stalked on Instagram) may be socially exhausting, however, within blogosphere, an exceptionally easy ice breaker is to start a conversation by asking the ‘go to question’ – What’s your Instagram handle? and introducing yourself the same. #RealityCheck your blog/insta handle is way more famous and is bound to be recognized by others than your actual name.

Another excellent etiquette I observed during these social events is bloggers supporting fellow bloggers by following them on social media on the spot. A great move for people to remember you by, take out your phone & search them then & there to spread some digital love.

how to start great smal talk in dubai events if you are an introvert dubai media invites blogger tips to network (2)

Small Talk with a Personal Touch

Ever had those moments, when you gather all the courage introduced yourself and had no idea where to lead the conversation next. Start with a nice genuine compliment. Find something interesting in their apparel & accessories, this approach is friendly and less like professional networking. Next, mix in a “How did you become a blogger” if it turns out to be a group of 3 or 4. Allow everyone to share a story & you are one step closer to being a butterfly.

If you’re an anxious introvert, look for someone who seems a little lonely and might share your anti- social tendencies. Strike up a conversation on how crazy hectic such networking events can be or let them know about your 5 people challenge (your anxiety can aid to a real conversation). Most people are empathetic towards introverts.

Snap with a Chat

Most of us in any event, are majorly involved in our vlogging game. We are much more secured talking to our screen than people in front of us, aid to this social anguish, by offering people to take their photos. Don’t be that ‘One Snap Good Bye’ kinda person, instead invest some time & creativity to click a real good snap or boomerang, as this gets YOU in the good books.

Follow Up Sooner than Later

Before leaving the venue, offer pleasantries to the host & compliment them on the hard work put into the event & how beautiful it turned out. Show your gratitude personally to the individual who invited you at the event and the next morning as well. Though as bloggers, we focus & timely ensure an RSVP, thank you notes are often neglected. Send a personalized note via email within 24 hours after the event to showcase appropriate business and social etiquette.

Also, make a quick follow up with the bloggers you met at the event by showing more support on the social media pages. DMs are the best way to go.


Tell us! What are the best networking conversation starters you’ve heard or tried?

Until, Next Time, Love Rahma


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Last Minute Valentines Day Hacks For Single Girls in UAE

last-minute-valentines-day-hacks-for-single-girls-in-dubai-uae-ajmanValentines is overrated, a statement many single folks stand by this time of the year and while other love doves are fantasising what to wear on the fancy red hot dinner date, people like me just want to pass this day with a little bit of grace and mouthful of chocolates. Why? Because the red roses and massive teddy bear stamped all across social media are again going to be heartbreaking. Furthermore, the single girls climb up the ladder of craziness with their Anti-Valentines party pictures, which sometimes are just painful spiteful for the anxiety driven group.

So, if you are single, anxious to go for a girls night out and of course on a tight budget. I got you ladies covered up. Okay! in all honesty, I never celebrated this so called Loveday with a boy but I do know how to get through this without being a sore loser. Here is a lisr of amazing things you can do under 100 AED.

last-minute-valentines-day-hacks-for-single-girls-in-dubai-uae-things-to-do-alone-on-valentines-day-watch-movie-with-friends-on-du-tuesday-vox-cinema-uae-dubai-free-movie-ticket1. Movie Date Night
The easiest way to spread some cheer this V-day is a movie night, especially because it is Du Tuesday at Vox cinema and let’s take a minute to be thankful for this awesome campaign. Action (Return of Xander cage) to horror (Ring 3) we have plenty to select from, if your date is a kid why not the  Lego batman Movie. Into Hindi movies? Jolly LLB 2 looks super interesting!!
Location in Ajman: Vox City Center Ajman
last-minute-valentines-day-hacks-for-single-girls-in-dubai-uae-things-to-do-alone-on-valentines-day-ice-cream-and-tim-hortons-coffee-cold-stone-evening-date-with-friends-on-a-budget-using-entertaine2. Coffee or Ice Cream Date
If you really are in a money crunch and love chatting hours with a bestie, this is perfect and who doesn’t like coffee and ice cream in the cold weather? So my recent personal favourite combo is Tim Hortons and Cold Stone mainly because I can buy one get one free offer with my entertainer app.
last-minute-valentines-day-hacks-for-single-girls-in-dubai-uae-things-to-do-alone-on-valentines-day-show-kindness-celebrate-v-day-with-poor-tumblr-donation-charity3. Share an act of kindness
Looking to gain some rewards and a fun time? Become a Santa Claus by dividing your budget (ex: 100AED) into 5 or 10 groups (ex: 20 or 10AED) and make cute little pouches filled with chocolates and candies. Next, you roam around town and hand it over to someone in need. And if you have a friend by your side it is double the fun.
last-minute-valentines-day-hacks-for-single-girls-in-dubai-uae-ajman-spa-tumble-manicure-pedicure-pink4. Spa Day out
What girl doesn’t want perfect nails? A great way to enjoy V-Day is a mani-pedi appointment with your mum. Let’s be real, we all love our spa days. If you are alone, why not opt for a massage instead some great places offer within the bracket of 100 AED.
Mani-pedi: 85 per person in Nayomi Salon
Swedish Massage only for AED 87 with a groupon at Body & Soul Health Club Ajman
last-minute-valentines-day-hacks-for-single-girls-in-dubai-uae-things-to-do-alone-on-valentines-day-ajman-dubai-shesha-place-ideas-mint-grape-shisha5. Chill at Sheesha cafe
Nothing really beats chilling out in a cool lounge with a ridiculously beautiful view, soft lighting and the refreshing Grape-Mint shisha vibes. Head to Ajman Beach for a variety of great cafes with a touch of traditional Arabic cuisines or if in Dubai, Bertin Bistro offers one of a kind Sheesha flavours.
last-minute-valentines-day-hacks-for-single-girls-in-dubai-uae-things-to-do-alone-on-valentines-day-netflix-chill-and-chocolate-tumblr6. Chocolate and Candies
Every year I indulge in some luxurious chocolates on V-day because why not? Forget about your diet & NETFLIX AND CHILL with a box of your favourite dessert, maybe Cinnabons or Thai Icecream?
Best Dessert Parlour in Ajman: Yum in Tum, House of Chocolate and Curlberry Arabia
last-minute-valentines-day-hacks-for-single-girls-in-dubai-uae-things-to-do-alone-on-valentines-day-dinner-date-tumblr-lunch-with-mum-tumblr-inspired-luxury-hotel7. Dinner Date with Mum
Spoil your mum this V-day with her favourite cuisine within your budget. Do some much-needed research on zomato to find perfect spots for a mother-daughter date. Recently my mum and I found Chicken Tikka on Ajman Beach which serves amazing Chicken Fajita as Sizzler for AED 30 only.
last-minute-valentines-day-hacks-for-single-girls-in-dubai-uae-things-to-do-alone-on-valentines-day-in-home-spa-tumblr-lush-bath-tub-bubble-bath-tub-lush8. In-home Spa
Sometimes you can’t make efforts to go out and don’t have the energy to deal with people. Basically, you need an Anti-human VDay solution, get those favourite beauty masks out, a lush bath bomb, warm cup of tea and your favourite book. Spend a good amount of time in your tub with hot water and bubbles all around.
last-minute-valentines-day-hacks-for-single-girls-in-dubai-uae-ajman-girl-driving-car-tumblr-things-to-do-alone-on-valentines-day9. Long Drives with podcasts
For some reason, no one understands why I like taking long drives alone. I can see how from an outsider’s perspective it might seem like a lonely endeavour, but actually a much-needed disconnection from the world. Instead of music, I love listening to podcasts on my way to places. I recommend “Brendon.com” for motivation or “East India Comedy” or “All India Bakchod” for comedy.
Bonus 10: If you feel lonely, why not DM me, we can have a Quick chat.


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9 Mobile Apps We Love (And You Should, Too!)

top-mobile-iphone-applications-used-by-bloggers-in-dubai-9-iphone-apps-most-popular-in-uae

Being a content creator is not a job you can turn off at 6 pm, it’s fascinating, highly planned lifestyle, that I’m still getting used to even after one year on field. As a blogger, digital marketing specialist and more so an Instagram addict, I’m 24/7 behind the screen of my laptop or mobile. Yes ! I’m one of those lame girls who bump into you in a mall while reading something on her phone.

“To step on to the success ladder, we all need to bring out that famous #GirlBoss hustle.”

My life is a constant juggle between my mobile phone and agenda. Writing, editing and publishing a blog post can be a daunting task in itself, but when blended with a full-time job and studies, you sometimes feel like an exhausted lifeless baboon. Burden of multitasking often overpowers your productivity.

In this post, we are going to unfold my handy dandy mobile apps list that gives me a power boost to stay ahead in the blogosphere and just makes my daily chores easier while on the go.

top-mobile-iphone-applications-used-by-bloggers-in-dubai-9-iphone-apps-most-popular-in-uae-best-app-iphone-used-by-instagram-influencer-to-schedule-and-plan-instagram-feed-tumblr-pink-theme-planoly-in1. Planoly

Now, this baby is my latest discovery and a powerful tool for all my Insta fanatics. Planoly helps to plan & schedule your visual Instagram feed days or even months in advance. Why I love this App? One, you upload bulk images and two, the Drag & Drop feature lets you fiddle around your feed just the way you like it before posting.

You can also track and reply to your comments directly from the app. Plus, it has a monthly calendar which shows all your existing and scheduled posts. The free version of this app allows a maximum of 30 posts to be scheduled which it doesn’t post automatically. Quite a bummer. Planoly sends you a push notification at the scheduled time.

Price: Free for 30 posts; AED 32 for unlimed posts.

top-mobile-iphone-applications-used-by-bloggers-in-dubai-9-iphone-apps-most-popular-in-uae-best-app-for-music-in-iphone-tubidy-download-youtube-videos-in-iphone-for-offline2. Tubidy

My lifelong complaint with Apple.Inc is the level of difficulty when you want to transfer music files from a Windows laptop to an iPhone. And my god, I hate operating iTunes. This is a dream come true app for those who are tired of the entire iTunes mess. Tubidy is an offline alternative free video downloader via Youtube.

It has an inbuilt user-friendly search engine connected to Youtube and Soundcloud, you can watch the videos online to download them for later. The beauty of this app is you can choose the quality to video, to save more memory you can select from 240p and for high quality, you can download in 1080p. Unlike youtube, this app doesn’t shut down the audio when you lock your screen. Hurray!!

Price: Absolutely Free 

top-mobile-iphone-applications-used-by-bloggers-in-dubai-9-iphone-apps-most-popular-in-uae-best-app-to-stay-up-dated-with-your-favorite-tv-series-tv-show-time-app-iphone3. Tv show Time

When it comes to my Tv shows, I’m hands down a loyal fan who watches all shows on the same day. This gem has made a permanent place on my iPhone mainly because it tracks all my favourite shows and lets me know on which episode I left off and the dates of upcoming seasons.

Another exciting highlight is the whole community where passionate followers of all different kinds of shows interact with each other, vote on polls and even upload creative memes.

Price: Free !!! 

facetune-top-mobile-iphone-applications-used-by-bloggers-in-dubai-9-iphone-apps-most-popular-in-uae-instagram-influencer-best-photo-editing-apps-whiten-background-tool-best-app-for-selfies4. Facetune

Every blogger, YouTuber or Instagram influencer raves about this particular photo editing app because it magically enhances your ordinary snaps to KIM Kardashian’s picture perfect level. Ever see a picture on Instagram and wonder how their skin looks so smooth and eyelashes on fleek? Facetune has a smooth & details option. The former hides all imperfection and the latter highlights all the right places.

Another pretty decent feature is the whiten tool; which doesn’t need any explanation I guess. Great for taking out stubborn yellow tones on white backgrounds & removing small shadows. If you are into black-white-grey insta feed or a selfie lover, this app is a MUST Have.

Price: Only AED 21 

typimage-top-mobile-iphone-applications-used-by-bloggers-in-dubai-9-iphone-apps-most-popular-in-uae-typographics-fonts-used-by-famous-youtubers-alisha-marie-font-designs5. Typimage

Every time I need to create a banner for my blog posts or a contest picture for Instagram, I freak out with the different font design, size & colours. It took me hours to finalise a text image. Finally, ENTERS … Typimage a powerful typography generator that beautifully turns your text into amazing typographic designs with zero design skills needed.

There’s is an option to add the text design onto your or web images, solid colour background or just create transparent PNG text images. It is a quick fix to replicate your favourite Youtuber’s thumbnail designs.

Price: Free, but cost around 7 AED to remove the watermark.

top-mobile-iphone-applications-used-by-bloggers-in-dubai-9-iphone-apps-most-popular-in-uae-coinkeeper-iphone-app-to-handle-your-finance6. Coinkeeper

Managing your finances is a pretty darn hectic job but a relatively important one. Believe it or not, I use Coin keeper from the moment I started to earn. A week before my salary is due, I spend the most time with this app in which I segregate my monthly payments in different expenses columns which you can rename and also set a certain monthly budget to spend on so called ‘luxury items’.

Price: Free !!! 

entertainer-top-mobile-iphone-applications-used-by-bloggers-in-dubai-9-iphone-apps-most-popular-in-uae-buy-one-get-one-free-dubai-offers-for-burger-king-krispy-kreme-texas-free-food-best-app-for-fo7. Entertainer

As a blogger, there are times we have to make our life more exciting for content, YES we all do that. Instead of our regular restaurant & favourite spas, we purposely try out new ones. Entertainer lets you make the best of life in UAE with Ah-mazing offers on anything and everything, you just name it.

How this app works? You buy the yearly package once and you get over 1k Buy one get one free offer for dining, attractions, leisure activities, health & fitness and hotel accommodation across 40 destinations worldwide. I applied for the package just one week back and I have used it on Booba Tea, Tim Hortons, Krispy Kreme, Burger King, Kozma & Kozma Spa.

Price: Free !!! But the packages cost around AED 400. 

top-mobile-iphone-applications-used-by-bloggers-in-dubai-9-apps-most-popular-in-uae-canva-beginners-guide-to-make-social-media-posts-and-magazine-covers-best-photo-editing-and-graphics-by-instagramm8. Canva

Probably the most popular and used graphic designing site out there by Instagrammers, bloggers, and photographers is Canva, a sleek and powerful app that acts as an alternative to Adobe Illustrator for rookies. A mobile app in conjunction with the site just came up and OH MY GOD, I’m super thrilled.

You do not need to feel as though in order to have great photos on your Social media, you need to learn Photoshop. Canva has an inbuilt collection of separate professional templates for all social media sites according to their dimensions,  which you can easily tweak to your liking. But it’s most than SM posts, you can design highly sophisticated & creative Magazines, invitation cards, flyers, posters and even your Resume with very limited graphic designing skills.

Price: Free !!! 

top mobile iphone applications used by bloggers in Dubai 9 iphone apps most popular in uae tide foucs app divide your time in 25 mins work and 5 min free best iphone apps9. Tide

Wanna get some work done? Change your procrastination to productivity? Tide is your go-to app. It’s a straightforward and extremely simple app with no unwanted distractions based on the popular time management method, Pomodoro Technique,  Basically, you divide your time into a 25-minutes fully concentrated periods, separated by 5-minutes short breaks. Tide lets you dedicate your time exclusively to one task at a time accompanied by sounds of the natural environment which make it super easy to identify when 25 mins are over and you don’t need to constantly check your phone.

Price: Free and super effective. 

Please don’t think you HAVE to buy these apps, I’m offering my personal opinion to those of you who asked for it. These little babies make my life easy, fun and organised.


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The Shocking Revelation of 2016

junoon-dubai-2Wow, 2016 was an interesting year and I’ve been lucky enough to expand my network of people and quite grateful to experience beautiful new adventures every week. A year of massive ups and downs, while it went high as the glittering sky some days, others were a true example of a sinking titanic. I picturized a positive personality on screen but some behind the scenes were tragically negative too.

2016 was a year of powerful life lessons and I thought it might serve you well if I shared‎ 16 of them with you. So here you go:

1.

Gratitude: Even in the darkest of times, you can always find something to be grateful for.

2.

No matter how much you earn and where you live, a certain amount of your salary should be marked as charity to the needy.

3.

Surround yourself with positive people and try to absorb that same energy within you every morning. It is hard to stay positive in dark situations yet, not impossible. Train your mind to have only positive thoughts which turn into a happy reality.

4.

Crying is not a sign of weakness, pick your battles and people in front of whom you can soften up without feeling embarrassed.

5.

No moment is as perfect as a hot cup of tea, warm fuzzy socks and an amazing book wrapped up in a cold winter night.

6.

Talk more about your life goals with family & friends as it creates a social commitment and drives a dedicated energy inside you to achieve the target.

7.

Your definition of perfection may be trash for one and treasure to some, all you need to focus on is giving your 100%.

8.

Enjoying your own company helps you grow personally, eating your dinner out or listening to music on a long drive alone is a beautiful way to charge up the self-love train.

9.

Pay extra attention to your savings and don’t waste money on mediocre stuff instead, invest in new adventures to build up happy memories.

10.

Attend free seminars in your locality and discover new online courses to add on to your resume.

11.

Going through 4 cups of coffee/tea to stay awake is not a big deal. When it is literally your lifeline or your new best friend.

12.

Invest in good skincare over makeup, a healthy skin to start with is so much better than fixing a blemished skin.

13.

Preaching self-control is easy, practising patience is hard but deciding how to act while waiting is the hardest. Everything has its own proper time, things you are desperately praying for will show up when you are clear cut ready for them.

14.

After a hectic day at work, you go back home to a person who asks “How did your day go by?” consider yourself really lucky.

15.

Success favours those who work hard and pray harder. You PLAN your goals, PERFORM to your best ability and most importantly raise your hands to PRAY for a reward. 

16.

Taking a digital detox every now and then refreshes your soul & boost up new ideas.


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REWIND: WHAT HAPPENED IN 2016?

2016 was definitely a roller coaster ride, filled with happy highs and disappointing lows, special success and frustrating failures. I definitely came out of my little protective shell and got to meet so many incredible people in the industry & make new friends, work with some of my dream brands/companies, finally conquered on one of the most challenging hurdle ever – UAE Driving test and made my biggest investment so far with my little black beauty – Nissan Sentra 2016.

Looking back at 2016, I encountered lots of good and bad memories but enjoyed plenty of “I can’t believe I did that” moments. This year, I faced the worst of depression & stumbled upon nerve-racking anxiety, but I stood strong and kicked some serious ass. Read books on self-motivation, practices self-love and most importantly trained my mind to focus on positive thoughts only.

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This little recap of my favourite 2016 milestones, got me crazy excited for what 2017 has in store for me.

THE ONE WITH ULTIMATE HITS 2016

Happy End of the Year / Beginning of New Year

It’s time to bring back the old school favourites post, a list of my holy grail product for Twenty Sixteen, the ones I went back to all the times, throughout the year – my tried and true friends. So much has gone down on social media, in the beauty world in last 12 months, I wanted to show yo girls what I’m carrying forward from last year. So let’s just dive into it with no particular order.

lush hair care review

  1. Lush Hair Care

2016 started off on a beautiful note by a massive collaboration with a brand I obsessed over during my college years, I had an intensely satisfying moment when I got a surprise package from Lush with some of the most popular hair care items, there was no turning back from that moment onwards. For a hijabi whose hair is tied up and covered most of the day, Lush did a wonderful job in the hair repairing and strengthing process.

So the ones that stuck around making a place in my hair care routine and were repurchased every quarter was the Lush Big Sea Salt Shampoo and Jasmine and Henna Fluff Eaze Hair TreatmentAn obsession caught up with my brother as well who kept stealing them all year round. Click here for a detailed review on the former.

As for Jasmine and Henna Fluff Eaze Hair Treatment, I’ve passionately recommended this kick-ass hair care essential to EVERYONE, be it boy or girl. This deep conditioning treatment not only leaves your hair super shiny & smooth but has the most astonishing smell lingering on to you for days.


2. Fondue at Melting Pot

Before 2016, I had no idea of how incredibly exciting a fondue dining experience could be, I’ve an extra soft spot for Melting Pot as it was my very first restaurant review as a food blogger but I’ve kept going back to this dynamite with friends, family and even guests from aboard.

Putting the whole thrill of dipping assorted fruits and bread in hot chocolate and melting cheese into words is beyond my writing capabilities yet the restaurant has been mentioned in my Guilty Pleasure column twice. Click here to read the review. The whole concept of sharing the hot fondue with others on the table is so intriguing, especially on a date night.


3. Kempinski Ajman Friday Brunch

In 2016, I came face to face with a grand tradition of Friday Brunches, away from all the office drama, discovering new locations & exploring intriguing cuisines. I was at Kempinski Ajman almost 8 Fridays out of 53, which speaks a lot for itself. From their outdoor Garden brunch to indoor New York style Italian Brunch, Kempinski always had their A game on.

My top three picks at the Brunch would be the Chocolate Shawerma, the entire live cooking station headed by the Indian restaurant Bukhara and Dim Sum from the Asian/Chinese station. Hands down, this a quick getaway for your entire family filled with lots of food and fun.


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4. Favourite Store: Typo

Even years after finishing high school, my first stop at any outlet would be their stationery section. Some people don’t realise how these therapeutic little things bring back childhood memories. Typo is one such quirky store offering strange props for HomeDecor and vibrant collections of Planners & notebooks. My personal favourite is the flashy Summer Mermaid series.


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5. Pumpkin Chai Latte Caribou

Obviously, fall comes with a bag full of delicious drinks and after trying a whole bunch of those, Caribou Caribou did win me over. Always on a hunt for different flavours in Chai LatteChai Latte, which seems to have very less options these days, I’ve found my ultimate favourite Hot Beverage with the smell of pumpkin and the cinnamon flavour.


the-3-bath-and-body-works-candle-dupes-56. Candles – Bath and Body Works

I am an Everything Fall kinda girl, fashion, drinks or scents you name it. From the ancient smell of cinnamon cookies to shades of military green and down to a beautiful climate filled with dried orange leaves everywhere. I just love the whole season and my love increased with a recent splurge in Bath and Body Works’ candle section.

I love BBW, but I always keep missing out the massive Sales but this year I was well prepared in advance. So I got my hands on some really great deals and amazing scented candles which my mum and I keep fighting over. Leaves & Marshmallow Fireside hits your room with the most lovely fall scent ever. Definitely “fall” all wrapped up into a scent if you could imagine that.


SAMSUNG CAMERA PICTURES7. Debby LipChubby Matte Lipstick in Shade 06 Magenta

Lifestyle Gulf was on a roll in 2016, launching plenty new brands among them was Debby, an Anglo-American Makeup Line which bounced across all favourites and reached my essential’s list within a week. The subtle pink purple Crayon shade was my go to lippy for a pop of colour last few months. Since the brand has arrived completely under the radar, and they definitely deserve some viewing!



img_81358. Max Factor Master Piece Nude Palette 03 Rose Gold

Another Beauty pick for 2016 is a newbie from Max Factor, 2016 was the year of Rose Gold, and this palette had a great mix of pink-leaning nudes and offered enough room to play.  With just 8 shades and a very travel-friendly size, you can go for a lovely, plummy, smoky eye. Credit needs to be given to the double-ended, sponge-tipped brush, which is not the usual rubbish you get in palettes and actually works really well especially for inner corners.


img_3615_facetune9. Favourite Mobile Applications

I’m not a pretty tech savvy person, but I love my handy mobile apps. As a content writer, most of my life & social media plans are scheduled away in my phone without which I’m completely lost. Yes!! I’m one of those 😛

As all Instagram fanatics, rave about one particular app FaceTune which you can find only in iPhone and cost AED20 or less, this editing app takes your ordinary pictures to Insta Perfect within minutes. My favourite feature would be the ‘Whiten’ tool.

Another App which deserves a mention is TV Show Time. I’m crazy when it comes to TV shows, while I love binge watching some others I follow some wholeheartedly and this app makes it so easy to get updates about the timings and when they are telecasted. Also, it has a community for each show where you can comment and meet people who love the same shows you do. I’ve a blog post lined up discussing all my favourite apps for the year.


tumblr_oamkjqiup81uiouizo1_128010. Tv Show – CW Dream Team Minus Arrow <3

With Arrow being a lost cause after the second season, I stumbled across The Flash which seemed okay at first. But was interesting and really catchy later on.. And the new addition of Supergirl to the team was a cherry on the cake. Recently, they had a huge collaboration of 4 episodes on CW with Arrow, Flash, SuperGirl and Legends of Tomorrow all together,


s-l100011. Car Freshener – Bath and Body Works

By God’s grace, I purchased my very first car in 2016 and was completely obsessed with getting freshly baked cookies or tropical fruit fragrance tied up to my car.  Bath and Body have the cutest, most adorable portable holders with some of the most delicious scents ever. My favourite would be the Caribbean Escape and Cinnamon Caramel Swirl which are right now on sale at AED 8.


Bookish.ae review online library in dubai uae bookstagram12. Books – What I Know for Sure.

In 2016, I experimented with my books a lot, I travelled away from Fantasy and landed on Adult Non-Fiction. I stumbled upon bookish.ae an online library in Dubai, a medicine to my book lover self. My first delivery included What I know for sure by Oprah Winfrey and I fell in love with her unique motivational writing style. Most importantly, taught me the greatest lesson of 2016, to be thankful for what you have. #Gratitude


What do with ALoe vera gel? Do it yourself hacks for face & body13. Skincare – Aleo Vera Gel from My skinChoice

One essential, I kept repurchasing throughout the year for a flawless skin was Aleo Vera Gel, from body scrub to sleeping mask, I used aloe in anything and everything. I also wrote a huge article on the same on my blog (Click here to read) which also got featured in Yoga Life magazine.


large.jpg14. White Shoes

This year, hijabis took over the high street fashion and runaways with grace, we saw girls conqueror over traditional norms in the industry and made their exquisite mark. “Kudos” My favourite purchase for the year for my white sneakers which I wore everywhere, super comfy and perfect match for all outfits.


ImPRESS Gel Manicure Nail Set Red, Black, Pink &amp; Blue Nail Art Design by Dubai Beauty Blogger UAE Makeup Artist15. Kiss Cosmetics Nail Kit

Nail art has always been a struggle, and getting a manicure done every two weeks at a salon is not my cup of tea. I’ve been playing around with many nail designs of Kiss Cosmetics & Imperial Nails this year and totally recommended it to all my friends. One, they are super easy and two, looks beautifully natural and gorgeous. Click here for review.


Capture.PNG16. Unicorn Watch by Lovisa

One big trend, that’s not only in jewellery but also home decor is Copper or Rose Gold. I absolutely adore it and super happy it is widely available everywhere with all different prices. As a Christmas present, I got a Rose Gold watch from Lovisa and I wore it everywhere the last two months. Super simple yet very relatable to my positive personality.


2016, honoured me with beautiful memories and ravishing products which I fell in love with completely. Comment below if you would like to see a monthly favorites post.

Until Next Time,

Rahma <3

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

THE ONE WHERE BOOKS GOT DELIVERED TO MY HOME

Bookish.ae review online library in dubai uae bookstagramHello Stylers,

As a content creator & lifestyle blogger, my work demands to be in front of the screen almost 10-12 hours a day .For years I vouched for EBooks, as they were easy to carry on my phone, readily available to download & super affordable. But my eyes & soul can’t take another minute of digitalizing my favourite pass time. So my long lost love for physical copies was renewed by a recent find in Dubai Digital market. Oh the Irony, my solution to digital detoxification was found on an online podium.

Bookish.ae review online library in dubai uae bookstagram

Introducing ‘Bookish.ae’ an online library that delivers your favourite books at your doorstep. In all certainty, I’m against splurging on physical copies which are read once and come to be a decoration piece at your bookshelf. Instead, a library offers an economical experience and if it delivers directly to your door, what’s the harm? #LazyGirlHacks

My every single visit to a bookstore ends with me walking out the doors empty handed but a mental checklist of hundred books to read, yet never spending a dime on a physical copy. Most books are generally priced between 40 to 50 AED at bookstores, which made me love bookish.ae way more. Bookish.ae provides an affordable membership starting with AED 49; each plan has a different number and types of books you can rent each month. So now instead of one, I get to read plenty within a month for the same price.

Check out these step-by-step instructions on how to join Bookish.ae.

Last month I subscribed to their Book Lover Membership which costs AED 99 for 6 months or AED 119 per month in which you can avail unlimited books per month (4 books at a time), a free joining gift on first delivery & membership program invites.

Though my ideal choice is young adult rom-com, this time I played around with my selection and rented out different authors & genres. And oh bouy I was surprised, in a very positive way. My first delivery included the following books

Bookish.ae review online library in dubai uae bookstagram

What I know for sure by Oprah Winfrey
Safe Haven by Nicholas Spark
The Cinderella Moment by Gemma Fox
Harry Potter and the Cursed Child by J K Rowling.

Pros

Affordable memberships with free home delivery
More than 5000s books  to choose from covering different genres & authors including ones from India & Middle East.
You don’t have to return a book at the end of the month as long as your membership is still active, and there are no late fees or due dates.

 

Cons

Unfortunately, they only Deliver in Dubai – The only con I could find after testing the service for one whole month.

Final Verdict

Hands down, this is the best innovation made for a book lover and lazy girls. Plus, with so much being digitalized, a physical copy brings in a sentimental value,  the way the pages feel in your hands, the rich scent of paper, the way they wear over time and gain character.

Bookish.ae review online library in dubai uae bookstagram

For more information, visit the Bookish.ae website or email them on info@bookish.ae for queries.

 

 

BEHIND THE SCENES OF COLLEGE LIFE

dubai-college-life-scenes-of-amity-univesity-dubai-1For every graduate, freshmen year holds unforgettable memories and the so-called orientation day; in general, comes with an overwhelming baggage of anxiety, intimidation and downright terror mode. While some disguise the ‘butterflies and nail biting’ behind a bold candid mask, others make desperate attempts to camouflage in the crowd of thousand students. But the third unknown category is those ‘crackerjacks’ who crave becoming the King but chicken out before the combat, I was among these.

Venturing into the university doors, life hack videos, tips & tricks to make a lasting impression and how to articles were all over my internet history, truth be told after graduation, it was never about survival, in fact, the whole three journey was a necessary boost for me to conquer my fears & becoming a better version of myself. An adventure made of entirely new people means a fresh new start which the high school ‘You’ desperately craved, savour this independent new world away from family and past notions.

Though I read thousands of articles on how to survive college, I never came across anything explaining what exactly to work on those three years for a better life in general. A few days back when I posted BEHIND THE SCENES OF DUBAI WORK LIFE AS A BEGINNER many of my university mates & juniors asked me to write something about College life.

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Presentation:

Golden words always linger by your side, facing huge anxiety issues from childhood once a mentor told me it’s not what you say, it’s how you say. You can make a lie seem the truth just by being confident. I still do face anxiety –  a nerve-wracking pain in my stomach before talking to strangers or asking someone for help, but now I’m way better at hiding it away in a calm composed exterior.

Don’t be in the ‘know it all’ group, thrive for knowledge make the curious nature the crux behind your personality. When I walked out those campus door I knew ‘I may not be perfect but I’m good, I know something but l want that something to become everything’. And that’s what forces me to break barriers & reach for my dreams. #BossBabes

Experience:

We are in an era where companies want fresh graduates to have corporate experience, so to avoid months of uncanny job search, get involved in your campus activities, assist professors on a research paper or write articles for the editorials and at the same time look for an internship from day one. An unpaid internship pays you in the desired exposure you will need to set your career straight.

Back in my college days, I remember a Professor saying: “I’m in this class of 60 students equally attentive to all but how each student uses my expertise for their betterment depends solely on them”. College Professors can be a source of inspiration to many and a great ice breaker for me was asking about their first job experience after graduation, believe me, the hideous work stories lined up next is beyond imagination. College is the right time to friend zone your teachers and get out of those comfy protective shells effectuate by your parents. Before becoming a connection on LinkedIn my professors were friends with me on Facebook.

Amity:

A term interrelated to friendship, gratitude and compassion within nations. Studying on an international platform and befriending individuals with different nationalities and gender taught me how to accept a difference in opinion with positivity and eradicating that picky, judgmental, and flat out discriminating ways. Ironic that my university was actually named Amity.

Parents always tend to blame their kid’s fault on ‘unwanted friendships’ and the  nasty game of ‘peer pressure’ which destroys many talented youngsters. A student feels pressurised if the fine line between their subconscious Bad & Good decisions is blurred out, it’s never the friends to be blamed. Instead, college is a time where you can form great bonds with parents too.

Communication:

It is a two-way street, putting forward your opinions and ideas is crucial but so it listening to add-ons to your idea by others. College life teaches you how to take negative comments as constructive criticism and work your way through it rather than against it.  Mandatory Behavioural Science & Communication Skills courses at my Univeristy taught me how to switch off my Anxiety & Depression Mode in Public while in Private my counsellor showed me how bottling up your feelings is neither good for your physical nor mental health, ask for help & express those feelings as this is the time where you can get the most help.

Education:

Life is not about those chunky library textbooks and 2 hours written examination, I was a finance major passed with distinction and today the only thing remotely financial in my life is managing my own money with an app called Coin Keeper. No one is going to ask for textbook definitions, but the examples your professors referred during their lectures are way more crucial for practical implementation.

Constantly updating and educating yourself with global news and even current affairs in your field of interest takes you a long way, it’s all about being Street Smart & performing Smart Work in today’s corrupt world.

Dear Freshers, It’s okay to Hate your College Life at the start and Dear Graduates, It’s okay to hate your Work Life.