5 Things That I Learned a Little Too Late

A friend of mine sent a cute gift in the form of Conversation Starter cards for couples. There are 100 cards with different open-ended questions, supposedly to start deep conversations. Honestly, I think you can use it with a group of friends too, although the questions might be a little too private. One of the cards I pulled asked me “What did you learn a little too late in life?”

It did not require too much thinking back then. At night I reflected a little bit more on the question and jotted down these 5 things that I learned a little too late in life:

It’s okay to let go of toxic people and to choose yourself.

A few years ago, I started using this imaginary spray I called the “anti drama spray”. Every time I encounter toxic interactions or sense an incoming drama, I dramatically put out a spraying motion into the air and literally leave the room/person/conversation.

The result? Oh boy, incredible inner peace.

Was it easy? Nope, not at all. Initially, I nearly hated myself for walking away. For being weak, for giving up, and for not caring. That was excruciatingly painful. More than often, I stumbled back into the old pattern. I would ignore the toxic vibe signs, I’d do anything to stay in the mentally abusive friendship, believing “they did not mean it” and that “I’m too sensitive”. Over time it takes a toll on my self-worth. I endlessly question my worth and spent time thinking if I was too hard to love.

As I grow older and (hopefully) wiser, I started to understand that toxic people do exist and unfortunately, not everyone is kind. I don’t have it in me to hate people, but eventually, I learned to choose myself.

Now that I look back, the frequency of me having to spray that “anti drama spray” decreases a lot over the years, and it felt good.

Bad behaviour is bad behaviour, even if it’s family members who’d done it.

Strongly related to the point above, “anti drama spray” should apply also to the closest circle. I learned to recognise bad behaviour and/or attitude, and that I should not justify it. Instead, I acknowledge it and try to understand the reason behind those bad behaviours as best as I can. Understanding does not make it right, though. You should not rationalise, justify or normalise it, it will just add to the vicious cycle.

Plan your finances early, plan it well, and for the love of Harry Potter, get an insurance.

There’s a famous 50/30/20 rule of where to spend your salary. Generally, 50% should go to your essential spendings such as rent and food, followed by 30% discretionary spendings like entertainment and recreation. The rest of 20% goes to saving. Of course, you can adjust it according to your preferences and personal needs too.

I learned that looking into investment early is a good idea. For a year now, I have been learning about investments and passive income. Turns out there are a whole lot information out there! It’s easy to feel overwhelmed, but here, try from Doddy Bicara Investasi. I set up a time, usually not more than 2 hours per week, to watch or read news and articles about investment to keep myself informed. These days there are also lots of ways to start investing. I came across LandX ID about two years ago and Bibit earlier this year. Both are investment platform – LandX mainly for properties with crowdfunding a.k.a patungan system) and Bibit is basically a smart mutual fund a.k.a reksadana app. Look for ways that you are comfortable with and start planning your finances.

(also if you decided to use Bibit and want extra Rp25,000 to start investing, here’s my referral code: CuanSamaRia.)

BUT. Do this only after:

1. You’ve covered everything else; your monthly expense, saving, and emergency fund.

2. You’ve purchased a protection plan or insurance.

I went without insurance half my adult life and have learned my lesson that it’s not a good idea. Don’t rely solely on your company’s insurance, except if they offer to cover you even if you can’t work anymore.

You can’t change your parents. 

It’s a brutal truth, but you just got to face it sooner or later. Our parents are who they are. Whether they approve you or not, it’s not within your control. Love them hard for bringing you into this world and raised you, leave the rest at the doormat.

You can definitely bake small batch brownies.

I’m a baker at heart and have enjoyed baking all sort of cookies, cakes, and baked stuff. Usually, I go for bigger batch recipes but sometimes I really just want to have brownies for me and K.

Turns out, it is totally doable. I have been craving for good chocolate treats, but didn’t want to bake a whole pan of brownies. Therefore, blessed is the soul of Elif, whose recipes are intended for single or double serving. When I made the dough, I was confused to see how small in amount it was! But the recipe created fine two brownies cookies, with crispy top and fudgy inside, it was heaven.

Recipes here on her Instagram, but I wrote it for you with slight adjustment:

Dark Chocolate Brownies
serves 2

You need:
1 tbsp coconut oil ( 15 g) I used unsalted butter here
1 tbsp maple syrup (21 g) I used sugar here
Drop of vanilla, pinch salt I ran out of vanilla, but the brownies still smell and taste so good!
1/4 cup flour, gluten free if desired (30 g) I used all purpose flour
1 tbsp cocoa powder (6 g) I used dark, unsweetened cocoa powder
1/4 tsp baking powder
A little milk, I used almond milk here
1 tbsp chocolate chips (15 g) Pretty sure I put more than 1tbsp of choco chips
I also pressed dark chocolate chunk on top of the brownies after they’re done, for extra flavor yum yum

and then:
Preheat oven to 350F (176C) and line a cookie sheet with parchment.
Melt butter, add sugar and vanilla, mix ’em all.
Whisk together flour, cocoa, baking powder, salt.
Combine the two, it’ll look like it won’t be enough for two brownies, but seriously, it works!
Add milk little by little to form dough, it should be somewhat between brownie batter and cookie dough. You should be able to shape the dough in your hands.
Fold in chocolate chips.
Put the dough on the cookie sheet, shape it to your heart’s content.
Bake 8-10 min only so they stay fudgy like brownies inside – I baked it for 9 minutes, suuuper fudgy I LOVE it
Let them cool and firm up a bit.
Eat them with ice cream!

Valentine’s day around the corner – I guess this brownies recipe could come in handy too!

Have a lovely weekend you all x

Published by reylasano

she writes your stories

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