Albara Alohali

Mayflies and other frozen thoughts. ✍️ 🧠 👀

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Why Should They Care?

This is the best writing (or storytelling) advice I’ve ever come across. And it could change the way you’ll ever write anything to anyone from now on.

As I was surfing the rabbit hole of Youtube, I stumbled upon this lecture titled: The Craft of Writing Effectively by Larry McEnerney. It was an hour and twenty minutes long! So I guess I’ll save it for a later watch, along with another 200 videos on the list. But wait, let me just watch the first five minutes, maybe it’s not worth the wait. I discovered early on that it’s more tailored towards academic and post-grad writing. However, he was solving problems I related to, and with his storytelling and dramatic delivery captivated me or made me care to watch until the end of the lecture.

I’ll summarize here my favorite three take-aways:

1. You might naturally use your writing to help yourself think about the world. But if your goal is to...

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Mayflies. These little creatures have literally changed my life and brain. It all started when I stumbled upon this video back in 2012 by one of my favorite humans Neil deGrasse Tyson as he answered a question about his opinion about life and longevity. His answer can be summaries in that: a short life is a good thing to inspire focus. however, the part that I like the most in his funny way of storytelling and describing things is the following part.

I think of the mayfly that lives no more than 24 hours, what is life like to them? They’ll never see a sunrise if they’re born in the daytime. The things that we take for granted that they never see. So every minute of their life would be like, oh, it’s a wall! It’s a ceiling! It’s a moon! It’s a grass! Everything is this life experience that’s captured and presumably valued in their little brains. So I’d like to take my 75 years on this...

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I’m writing this from my mini-isolation-unplanned-bootcamp-retreat back to the place I used to call home ten years ago, Dhahran, Saudi Arabia. 🏡

I’m re-questioning the idea of home, how does this place (physically) earned that naming again. Is it the number of days I spent in? Is it the people I co-habitat with? Is it where I commute to work from? Or where I keep my belongings and books at?

This place feels like home again.

It is a phrase and a feeling I need to examine before it expires. I then need to use these insights to establish or transform my next residence into my future home.

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You’re a Work in Progress

We are all a work in progress. That includes how we think, what we do, our skills, relationships, health, and wealth; the list goes on. Being perfect or calling something so, is a chosen label that donates satisfaction and the acknowledgment of the needless urge to improve or change things.

Hence, this is an exercise in improving my self in the following sequence:

  1. Improve my self and perspectives by developing my thinking and thoughts.
  2. Improve my thinking by freezing my thoughts and observe them through writing.
  3. Improve my writing by practicing it every day here through this space.

Hoping that with better writing, I’ll also improve other aspects, to name a few, my discipline, focus, and storytelling.

Keep it short, keep it simple. One idea at a time.

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