Content writer from Manila, Philippines. https://odyssawrites.com
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This is what he said to me as we were chatting to get to know each other using Whatsapp. A couple of months later, I flew from Manila to Seattle to meet him. We sealed it and we became a couple.

It was easy.

Talking for at least one hour each day, opening up my entire life to him bit by bit, and relieving me of my worry that he is ‘just another guy’ was easy.

For the simple reason that love doesn’t have to hurt. It doesn’t have to come with pain and drama. It doesn’t have to feel…


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Photo by Alan Quirvan on Unsplash

You’re meeting for the first time. You’re anxious that you won’t meet his expectations. Which one looks better between the olive green and black dress?

Relax, you’re not getting married. Yet.

I know a good number of single friends who don’t enjoy going on first dates.

Maybe it’s out of fear of judgment. They don’t want to look silly. Maybe they are pressured to act perfect. Preparing and overthinking takes too much energy. Or they have unbelievably high standards.

But first dates are fun! While it’s true that everything you say and do is being watched, it should feel good…


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Photo by Christiana Rivers on Unsplash

A long-distance relationship is not a proper relationship. Exactly my thoughts.

Now, I’ve been in one for almost 2 years. I won’t say it’s easy, but it’s doable in the right conditions, with the right person.

What I’ve learned so far is this: You can never replace physical intimacy with a Zoom call. However, there are ways to manage the distance.

These are 8 things every long-distance couple should have.

1. Open communication lines about difficult topics

If it’s hard to discuss over a call, it might be harder to do in person. There are topics we can avoid now, but not later.

These are topics such…


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Photo by Julian Myles on Unsplash

Valentine’s Day has a bloody history.

St. Valentine was executed on February 14. He was for performing marriages for young lovers in secret, and that displeased the king.

It was for the sake of love that this man died, and it took his life for all of us to remember getting gifts for our partners because we love them.

For Buddhists, love is not about gifts. It’s about compassion and kindness. In a relationship, a partner shows these through thoughts, words, and actions.

Buddhist monk Thich Nhat Hanh teaches the 6 Mantras in The Art of Communicating. …


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Photo by Stefan Spassov on Unsplash

You and I are thousands of miles apart. With travel restrictions, requirements, and whatnots, the maze we are navigating seems to get more complex as months go by.

We thought our circumstances would change soon. They didn’t. What makes things more difficult is no one seems to know how and where the maze ends.

But in this maze, I find you. You make things easy.

You start calls even when you’re tired from work. You consider how I feel even when you’re hurt. Your sorry doesn’t come too late. Your voice turns a hard day around.

You prove me wrong.


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Photo by Edu Lauton on Unsplash

Are you a writer who’s been undecided about whether to create your own website or launch your blog?

Are you hesitating if this is the right time? Are you afraid of being critiqued because your website might not look as good as the ones you admire?

After writing in Medium for over a year, I finally took the steps to build and launch my website. It was scary, but worth all the effort and time.

A few weeks after, I found this article by brilliant writer Casey Botticello. …


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This year brought the world to its knees. We took comfort in food deliveries, Zoom calls, loungewear, and…old books.

I didn’t understand how people wasted time rereading old books. There are millions of new material waiting to get noticed. Why waste hours on a book you’ve read before?

Because familiarity brings comfort. Old books feel like old shoes.

Because great books age like fine wine. No matter how old they get, their lessons remain. Sometimes we have to reach a certain age to finally understand them.

Or we just love the book.

When you read a good book through the…


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Photo by Xavier Smet on Unsplash

Over 83 million infected worldwide. This comes with an unknown number of daughters, husbands, friends mourning the loss of a loved one. In most cases, they all had to die with no family beside them.

In the Philippines, over 400,000 succumbed to the disease. It’s inexplicable suffering.

As of September 2020, over 700 private schools closed in my country. It affected over 40,000 learners who needed to re-enroll somewhere else, adjust to a new study environment, and lose face-to-face interaction with their teachers and classmates.

There’s no rulebook to a pandemic in the 21st century. According to science journalist and…


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Photo by P T on Unsplash

In a few days, we will finally call this the year that was.

The new year is starting and bookworms like you and me will be updating our book lists.

When we look at books we’ve read, we see patterns, relive the experience, and remember the lessons.

What do you see when you look at yours?

This was my list from 2019. Here are the best books I read this year.

Wintering by Katherine Kay

I randomly purchased this book after I saw it posted on Elizabeth Gilbert’s Instagram page. Timely, appropriate, and exactly what I needed. …


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Photo by Joseph DeFrancisco on Unsplash

Patreon is a membership platform where content creators — writers, digital artists, yoga teachers, video editors, musicians, authors — post their work and get paid by their patrons aka fans or subscribers.

How much does a patron pay each month?

It depends on the amount that was set by the content creators. I’ve seen some patrons who ask for $1, $10, $15, and even $45 monthly. Each tier comes with rewards and benefits. The higher you go, the more you get.

What are the benefits of being a patron?

Think major exposure to an expert of a skill, a lifestyle…

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