We Need to Talk About Toxic Work Environments

Why does no one talk about toxic work environments? We need to talk about the feeling of dread and despair in the bottom of your stomach when you realize it’s time to return to work.

That feeling of being so exhausted no matter how much sleep you try to get. Eight, nine, ten hours…it’s no use. You’re still drained. Emotionally, mentally, physically. Sleep. Diet. Exercise. Nothing seems to help.

You don’t have the energy to do anything but no matter how much you try to “rest”, your body is still exhausted. It’s like your body decided one day to just give up.

We need to talk about that feeling of walking on eggshells, of working constantly and hoping that nothing you do or say will get you in trouble. That feeling of being watched, that feeling that someone is waiting for you to make a mistake so they can pounce on you.

That feeling of hoping that with all the hours you put in, all the exhaustion you’re feeling, you DON’T make a mistake because if you do that could cost you your job.

We need to talk about watching our friends and colleagues being forced out of jobs and fired. That feeling of heartbreak for them and their families. And then wondering, is it better to be forced out? Is it better to be left without an income but with your mental health scarred but not totally damaged. No, not yet. Or is it better to have money and watch as your mental health declines and slowly by slowly you lose all sense of self?

That feeling of seeing friends leaving jobs they’ve held for years and years just because your job has turned toxic. That hurt in your heart knowing that it was not supposed to be like this. That something somewhere has gone terribly gone.

But you don’t know what the issue is or how to fix it. So you sit quietly and you drag yourself to work. You walk on your eggshells and you hope for the best. That something someday will change.

Fiction Friday: Book Review- The Villain by L.J Shen

The Villain (Boston Belles, #2)

The Villain by L.J. Shen

My rating: 5 of 5 stars


Cillian (or The Villian as the media likes to call him) is perfect. The perfect son. The perfect businessman. But he is also an awful human being.
When all the bad press gets to be too much, Cillian has to either marry to soften his icy, unfeeling image or risk losing the business he gave up so much for.
Persy Penrose is whimsical and kind- the total opposite of Cillian. She has also been in love with Cillian since the moment she first set eyes on him.
When Persy needs money to pay off her deadbeat ex-husband’s debts, she turns to Cillian.
The two of them strike a bargain- he will pay off the debt in return for Persy playing the role of the perfect wife and providing him with heirs.
Their sham of a marriage comes with an NDA and a very long contract that both eventually start breaking.
I loved returning to the world of Boston and I especially enjoyed seeing Hunter once more. Cillian was a difficult character to like in “Hunter” and I actually despised him. Surprisingly, it only took one chapter from this book to endear him to me.
I definitely recommend this book if you’re looking for a romance book that you won’t be able to put down.
L.J Shen is a gem and this book is no different!



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Fiction Friday: Book Review- The Everlasting Rose by Dhonielle Clayton (The Belles #2)

The Everlasting Rose by Dhonielle Clayton

My rating: 5 of 5 stars


I read “The Belles” when it first came back way back when and somehow never got around to reading the sequel.
I had my doubts going in. Firstly I couldn’t remember the plot of the first book and I was too lazy to try and track down my copy in my huge hoard of books. Secondly I wasn’t sure if I would still be able to connect with the characters after such a long wait.
But I gave it a go and it was worth it.
Instantly we are given a recap of what happened and why Camille, Edel and Remy are on the run.
They are trying to locate Princess Charlotte, the real heir to the throne. They also come across a rebel group called “The Iron Ladies” (who really deserved a bigger role in this book). They are sort of just there.
Throughout the book, the reader is reminded of significant events in the first one which makes reading this after a long wait easy.
Even after all this time, the worldbuilding was amazing and the writing drew me in immediately.



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Life Update: 2020 Won

Chalkboard with text "UPDATE"

So it has been a while since I posted.

Long story short, my dad caught the Coronavirus and it was a whole big thing. He caught it in December and is still recovering. I am hopeful that things are back to normal now that he is finally out of hospital and life seems to be going back to normal.

On that note guys, please please PLEASE STAY at home as much as possible and stay safe!

Welcome to The Real World 4: The Interview that Never Was

The 4th interview was for a Human Resources position at a call center. Apparently they some sort of database at the university and they had picked up my information from there. I don’t know how true that story was but it made absolutely no sense for them to call me.

I had completed a single Human Resources module. I was not qualified for the job. I knew it. And if they had read my CV, they should have known that as well.

The company’s offices were a mere five minutes away from my house. So I got dressed immediately and went in for an interview.

They had me fill out a form and asked me to wait. I agreed. I waited an hour. Then another. I watched as the receptionist called someone who they had previously offered a job to. They had found someone who was a better fit so they called him to let him know that he didn’t need to report to work the next Monday.

My heart fell for him. Imagine thinking you’re going to start a new job and all of a sudden you have to learn that “we’re found someone else, sorry.”

After three hours of waiting, I was finally shown to a room with a frenzied lady who was in the phone of a phone call.

She asked me a couple of quick questions about my background in Human Resources and looked surprised when I pointed out that I had just graduated. She was even more surprised when she learnt that I had no knowledge of Excel. Apparently they were unable to hire me but they would keep my curriculum vitae on file.

I was stunned. They had made me wait for THREE HOURS? For something that could have been confirmed by simply looking at my CV or via phone call.

The receptionist took down my details and my list of skills but I highly doubted they would call me again (I was right. They didn’t).

I went home incredibly annoyed and tired. I had missed my nap because of a job interview I didn’t even have.

Fiction Friday: Book Review- Tempting Fate by Nora Roberts

Tempting Fate by Nora Roberts

My rating: 5 of 5 stars


When Diana Blade receives an invite from her sister-in-law to meet her brother after several years, she accepts it albeit reluctantly.
But while she is trying to reconcile the man her brother is with the boy she knew growing up, she gets to know his best friend and brother-in-law, Caine MacGregor.
Caine’s reputation precedes him- both personally and professionally.
Diana has heard all about Caine and his conquests and has no desire to be another one of them. But when Caine decides to expand his practice, he picks Diana to be his partner.
It isn’t long before the two have to start juggle their professional relationship with whatever is brewing between them romantically.
I loved having another look at the MacGregor family. Daniel is hilarious as always with his constant demands of marriage and grandchildren. I don’t remember Caine that well from the first book but it was great seeing the family again and getting to know the characters of future books.
If you’re looking for a quick and easy, I definitely recommend this book.



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Tips for A Stress-Free Black Friday

It’s the second most wonderful time of the year (or atleast it is, to me). Black Friday is approaching and with all the deals popping up on my social media feeds, I’m pretty excited. Lots of retailers have extended their specials to week-long or even month-long. But with great promotions come great responsibility and it’s easy to get carried away. Here are a few tips to make your Black Friday shopping a bit easier.

Shopping bags
  1. Make a List- Take note of what you actually DO need/want for Black Friday to avoid accidental splurges on items you do not need. Yes, that big screen TV from Game is a necessity.
  2. Check your budget- Can you actually afford the items on your list? While sales are great, it defeats the purpose if you’re going to be paying off your credit card for months after Black Friday. Even if you did manage to get the new cellphone you were eyeing for months.
  3. Plan your method of attack- Will you be shopping in-store or online? Almost everyone is having online specials as well which means you don’t have to worry about queues or Covid. As someone who hates crowds, this is absolutely perfect. (Also if you ARE going in-store, make sure to wear comfortable shoes and carry a snack just in case you get hungry).
  4. Create accounts for online stores in advance- If you plan on shopping online, make sure that you already signed up for an account on those shopping platforms. Nothing is more annoying than signing up for an account ON Black Friday only to realise afterwards that the items you picked out are now sold. This sounds like a basic tip but sometimes people get excited and forget. It’s me. I am people. And while we are discussing accounts, make sure you are logged in before you start shopping.
  5. Start early- If you know that there is limited stock of the item you’re after or that the offer is for a certain amount of people, be sure to set an alarm so that you’re ready as soon as the sale starts. ‘Ready’ in this case means that you are logged in and ready to start shopping before midnight.

What items are you looking forward to purchasing for Black Friday? Do you have any other tips to make shopping easier? I’d love to know below.

Happy Two Year Work Anniversary

Today marks exactly two years since I started working in Customer Care. Fun fact, I will be moving to a different department soon and I absolutely CANNOT WAIT.

But what I want to talk about is my move to Customer Care two years ago. Basically my manager at the time had me assisting the Inbound Customer Care line and when an opening came up, I immediately asked to apply.

However originally when I started my career, there was nothing more terrifying to me than speaking to customers on the phone.

In fact that was the main reason why I didn’t want a job in the call center. But my manager who knew that I was scared of the phone pushed me and eventually it became one of my favorite things.

It may not be my dream job but when time comes for me to leave, I will definitely cry like a baby.

Moving to Customer Care was one of the best decisions in my life and so I leave you with this quote which should be words to live by:

Book Review: Playing With Fire by L.J Shen

Playing with Fire by L.J. Shen

My rating: 5 of 5 stars


It took me a while to get into this novel but it was a nice sort of slow burn- sort of like West and Grace’s relationship.
West is running away from his past traumas and his method of escape involves drugs, alcohol and fighting for money.
Grace is trying to hide away from her past where she was involved in a fire that ruined her beauty. Her method of escape involves isolation, baseball caps and hoodies.
When West signs up to work with Grace at her best friend’s food truck, no one expects anything to happen between them. The town’s hottie bad boy and the girl burned so badly she looks like toast? Highly unlikely.
But the two strike up a friendship and the more time they spend together, the more they start to realize that they might not be that different after all.
“Playing with Fire” was a book I looked forward to for a while but was reluctant to approach because it seemed too angsty.
There is a whole lot of angst which is why I couldn’t binge read it the way I wanted to but I enjoyed reading this nonetheless.
This is one of L.J Shen’s finest work and if you want to cry and feel good thereafter, this is the book for you.



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Happy NaNoWriMo

So normally I get really excited for NaNoWriMo. A month dedicated to writing? No pressure? Yes please.

And I was excited way back when I was planning out my study schedule and pushing to finish before November began.

But now that it’s here I have a half-assed story concept, no plot outline and definitely no plan.

I’m still taking part because I feel like I should and at this stage it’s a tradition. If you can’t write a novel after the craziness of 2020 WHEN can you?

Are you taking part in NaNoWriMo? Let me know below.

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