16 September 2013

Not Everyone Will Like You

This post is in response to Carrie Fletcher's recent video 'Why Don't You Like Me?!', where she talks about how some people will hold something against you, or dislike you for no apparent reason. This happens to everyone but it often takes a while to come to terms with it and accept that some people will just not like you and there's nothing you can do about it.

This happened to me quite a few times and it was only a few months ago that I grew to accept it. Often someone will decide that they don't like you before they even speak to you, and the only thing you can do to change their opinion is to continue to be yourself and do what you're doing, in the hope that they'll realise that they were wrong. People judge you for the way you walk, your accent, the clothes you wear, the way you do your hair and pretty much everything else you do. It's these judgements that form a person's opinion of you, meaning that an opinion can be made before they even speak to you. The only thing you can do is give the person time and maybe make an effort to speak to them, even though it'll probably be incredibly hard at first. 

I thought I would share a couple of experiences I've had where people have judged me before they've got to know me, in the hopes that you'll realise that this happens to pretty much everyone and it doesn't last for long. :)

The first time I ever really experienced this was in third year when I was 14. There was a girl in a few of my classes who I had never really spoke to but was kind of friends with one of my best friends. One day in fashion class she 'borrowed' scissors from my friend then didn't give them back, so I said something. I'll admit, I was in a bit of a mood that day but I honestly did keep my cool and just asked for the scissors back. She hated this. She glared at me and started bitching about me to everyone she sat with, some of which were my friends. I just avoided eye contact and kept quiet, feeling pretty bad. Later on in the same lesson I was having a laugh with my friends about something completely unrelated but this girl thought the laughter was aimed at her and started to hate me even more, thinking that I was taking the piss. I guess this was a simple misunderstanding after what happened, but it really didn't help the situation. I was feeling pretty terrible at this point but I realised that I hadn't done anything wrong so I tried to forget about it. At the end of the lesson I went to the next-door class to put my fashion box back and the aforementioned girl came to put hers back too. This meant that we were in a class alone together; just me and a girl who had quickly grown to hate my guts. I put my box back, avoided eye contact and went to leave the class but she stood in front of me, blocking my path and shoved me. What I did next really didn't help the situation..I laughed...*head desk*. I wasn't laughing at her, I was laughing at the whole thing and what was happening but of course she thought I was laughing at her. Well done, Catriona. So smart... She really didn't like me after that lesson and made that very clear by talking about me to her friends (and my own friends) for weeks after. She said that I was stuck-up, impolite and arrogant, all of which are completely untrue. She had judged me on the way I looked, that one incident in fashion class, and my accent which is more english-y than other people in my area. Luckily, we sorted things out and are now okay with each other, as we both got to know each other and realised that our assumptions were wrong. 

Another time that someone (or in this case a group of people) have decided they don't like me was more serious than the first time, and went on for a bit longer. It again happened in fashion (not the best class for me), this time in 4th year when I was 15. I was just sitting, minding my own business one day when the group of girl's opposite me starting laughing. Seems normal, right? I ignored it until my friends said that they were actually laughing at me. They would look up at me, whisper something then break into laughter. I kept my head down and got on with my work but then a ball of paper hit my head. I asked my friend to read it so I could keep my composure, so she read it and binned it straight away. I still don't know what it said but I really don't want to. This happened for the full lesson, but after a few balls of paper we started replying. The three of us (two of my friends and I) would write come-backs and correct their grammar before throwing the notes back. They didn't have a problem with my friends doing this and every note thrown was aimed at me. I left the class feeling okay because correcting their spelling and grammar was fun, but this went on for weeks. I stopped replying and my friends moved their seats so they were forming a little barricade around me. The girls complained to the teacher that I was staring at them, throwing mean notes and not getting on with the work (basically what they were doing), and continued to torment me for a good 2 or 3 weeks. It only stopped after we went on study leave for the exams. They had done this because they said I had been staring at them and, again, thought I was stuck up. They still don't like me at all, but at least they don't make it quite so clear.

I enlisted the help of a few blogging friends to give their point of view and share some experiences they've had where people have made snap judgements against them.

I have actually had this happen to me a lot through my life but particularly when I started high school. I was very excited about going into high school and was looking forward to making new friends and so I was honest with people and tried to show people who I am in the hope I would find friends like myself. I love reading, writing  and I care about my education a great deal more than a lot of people do. This came across when my class started getting into trouble due to other pupils who liked to make the teachers angry, and when people noticed that I didn't laugh or find it funny. That was when people started to dislike me, the bullying started and I was made to feel like an outsider. There was no reason for it, I never did anything to cause people to be like that. I just thought what they were doing was wrong and I wanted to do well at school. Six months ago I moved school and I fit in here and nothing like this has happened. People like me for who I am. - Holly from 'A Daydreamers Thoughts'.

I've never been openly told by anyone that they dislike or hate me, but obviously from peoples body language and what they say you can take a good guess. Generally, if someone dislikes me it is from something I have said, it is usually when I've not thought about it properly or said something out of context, or the most popular reason, that I can be pretty annoying sometimes! To be honest, I used to feel really bad about myself if I knew or had an idea that someone did not like me particularly much - but I've come to realise that there is enough people that do not dislike me (they might find me annoying occasionally but stick around anyway!!) so I can forget about the people that dislike me. It is however always important to be civil and respectful, even to people you know don't like you. No matter what people say, being nice does get you somewhere! However, do not get hung up on the fact that not everyone likes you - it is literally impossible to get everyone in the world to like you - there will always be someone who does not like your personality, your attitude, is jealous of you, thinks they are better than you.... but there are way more who DO and try and focus on those relationships than on the relationships with people that DON'T! - Jean from 'Oberjean'.

I'm not going to lie, I am one of those people who cares way to much about what people think of me and wants everyone to like me. I always worry what people who I have barely spoken to or hardly know think of me when really it shouldn't matter. So I'm going to try and listen to my own advice. There is going to be someone out there, no matter how kind you are, who will look everywhere for a reason to dislike you. They may barely know you and its very likely you wont have done anything wrong, but for some reason they may see you and instantly think 'I don't like her!' (or him). It just something everyone does, often with out thinking and there opinion can be irrational and judgemental but it can sometimes get you down. But their opinion shouldn't matter. Go about your life, be kind to them and don't let them ruin your day. If you feel down about it ever, just remember you have amazing friends and family, who love you, and those are the ones the matter :D - Helena from 'In A Few Nutshells'.

I've experienced being disliked for no real reason. Last September at the beginning of the new school year I joined a new class where I literally knew nobody. I made a few friends really quickly, but I also made a couple of 'enemies'. The thing is, I had no idea why. All it was, was a snap decision that the girl made, with no reason behind it. I don't even think I'd spoken to her. All I can say is - it doesn't matter. So what if someone doesn't like you? That probably means they're not your kind of person and that they wouldn't be a great friend anyway. There are always going to be people who do like you, and that is what's important. :) - Amber from 'The Mile Long Bookshelf'.

If you've ever experienced something similar or just have something you want to say, leave a comment below - I reply to every one! I really hope you enjoyed this post and hopefully took something from it. :) Now I have a little favour to ask... It would mean the world to me if you could share this post around and maybe even share it with Carrie herself. She really inspired me to write this and share these experiences with you, when I usually wouldn't. Just drop her a tweet or something - it would honestly mean the world. ^__^ 

Lots of love, Cat

7 September 2013

Music Memories

I've always loved music. I grew up listening to the Beatles and have listened to music constantly since I was born, being raised in a very musical house. I've been through a lot of music 'phases' where I'll be obsessed with a band for a few months then one day I'll wake up and decide they aren't as amazing as I first thought. I've also made friends through music; finding new people to talk to based on our taste in music, and there are some songs which will always remind me of a certain day or memory. It's clear that music has made a huge impact on my life, so I thought I would share some musical memories with you. ^_^

The first band I ever really loved and found by myself was Fall Out Boy. I remember getting a Pop Party CD for Christmas one year (I think I was about 9 or 10) and listening to one track constantly; 'Thnks Fr Th Mmrs' by Fall Out Boy. I loved it. It was so unlike anything I normally listened to and was the complete opposite of the music I had grown up with but something about it really appealed to me. I bought my first FOB CD a few weeks later based purely on that one song. It was 'From Under The Cork Tree' and I bought it from HMV in the sale. As soon as I got home I listened to it and fell in love with FOB more and more as I listened to each song. I remember finding the titles hilarious for some reason... My favourites were (and still are) 'A Little Less Sixteen Candles, A Little More "Touch Me"' and 'Of All The Gin Joints In All The World' and both of these songs will always mean a lot to me as they were the reason I came out of my shell and started talking to new people. One day in class (I was 10) a boy I had never really spoken to was listening to 'Of All The Gin Joints In All The World' on the class computer. I noticed and decided to talk to him, something that I would have never done before. We got talking about FOB and didn't stop talking about FOB until we left school two years later. I was quite literally obsessed with Fall Out Boy for two or so years, then one day I found another band and FOB got pushed aside. I never stopped loving FOB, but a new band took it's place for a while. This band was...

Good Charlotte. I found Good Charlotte through the music channels one day when I was bored. I was just skipping though the channels and stopped on Scuzz like I usually did when 'Girls and Boys' by GC came on. It was new to me and was different to anything I'd heard before so I instantly liked it. Good Charlotte was pop-punk and I loved how it was upbeat yet it had strong guitar parts and more mature lyrics. I loved how Joel Madden moved when he sang and the whole tattoos and piercings thing was new to me with bands I listened to. I bought my first GC album a couple of weeks later in HMV. It was 'Young and Hopeless' and is still, in my opinion, their best CD. My favourite was (and still is) 'The Anthem' but I loved it all. I bought all of their CDs and listened to them non-stop for a year or so, until I found other bands I liked more. Unlike FOB, I don't like Good Charlotte all that much now so I passed the albums onto my friend who is loving them. :) 

When I was 12 I started to get into bands like Paramore, Boys Like Girls, My Chemical Romance and 30 Seconds To Mars. When I was on the bus home from school one day, the boy in front of me was talking about how much he hated All Time Low. This boy was annoying and we argued a lot so, naturally, I wanted to like All Time Low to bug him (terrible, I know...).There was a slight problem though: I'd never listened to ATL. So, when I got home that night I watched a load of ATL videos online and ordered 'Nothing Personal' on Amazon. When it arrived I listened to it non-stop for weeks and fell in love with ATL. Like with FOB and GC, All Time Low was different to what I listened to so I really liked it. It reminded me of Boys Like Girls but, in my opinion, was better. My favourites on the album were 'Stella' and 'Damned If I Do Ya (Damned If I Don't)' and I still love these songs now. I had both found a new band to love and found a new way to argue with this boy on the bus. Maybe I should mention that this boy was the same boy who I loved FOB with... I bought all of ATL's albums within months and I still listen to them now. They're amazing.

I still remember the first time I listened to Paramore: I asked my sister to show me some new music and as she loved Paramore at the time, she let me hear two of their songs. They were 'Decode' and 'That's What You Get'. I think she played those two because she didn't think I would like them and she wanted to keep Paramore to herself but I ended up falling in love with them. Hayley Williams has the most amazing voice and I loved how upbeat their music was. 'That's What You Get' became one of my very favourite songs and it sparked off a love for Paramore and Hayley Williams. She became my idol, both for style and musical talent and I spent hours looking through pictures of her hair, make-up and style getting inspiration. Paramore quickly became one of my favourite bands and as my sister already had their CDs, I didn't have to buy any. :D 'Riot!' was, and will always be, my favourite of their albums, and 'That's What You Get' is one of my favourite songs.

A band I got into a little later was Kids In Glass Houses. I saw them when I was watching the T In The Park highlight show three years ago and, for some reason, knew all of the words to 'Saturday'. I kinda fell in love with Aled Phillips when I was watching them and I remember his jacket with all of the feathers on the collar...He ran through the crowd and everyone was grabbing at the feathers so when he came back on stage his jacket was in pieces. I'm not sure why I remember that but it was the start of my KIGH love. I got their CDs and have listened to them a lot ever since, especially 'Dirt' which was the soundtrack to my holiday in Malta. My mum and dad bought me an oversized 'Dirt' t.shirt for my 14th birthday and I still wear it as a pyjama top even now. KIGH are one of my favourite bands and I can't wait for their 4th album to be released soon. ^_^

I could talk about this for ages but I don't this post to be too long so I'll stop here. I might make another post like this one day if it goes down well though. ^_^

Lots of love, Cat

1 September 2013

Review - Amber by Julie Sykes

Happy September! :D

Author: Julie Sykes
Publisher: Curious Fox 
Published: September 12th 2013
Pages: 304 approx.
Source: For review*
Genre: YA, Contemporary, Fantasy

How do you live by the rules if you don’t know what they are? Amber has lost her memory and the only clues to her identity are a mobile phone in her pocket and a beautiful amber necklace around her neck. This intriguing and surprising novel for teenage girls will have readers gasping with disbelief as the truth about Amber is revealed...

I'm going to try my hardest to make this review spoiler-free as I know a lot of you will be itching to read this when it's released! 

When I first read the synopsis of Amber I thought I knew what to expect therefore I wasn't really that excited to read it; it sounded a little samey and predictable. I read it nonetheless - mainly because of how gorgeous the cover is - and I was pleasantly surprised! Amber is one hell of a book with the most twisty-twist I've read for a while. I literally gasped multiple times through the book and was still a little shocked after I'd turned the last page. It's hard to believe that this is Julie Sykes' debut YA novel. 

We find out early on that Amber has retrograde amnesia meaning that she has no memories of her past or who she is, she doesn't even know her own name. I really liked this concept and, even though I've read quite a few books about amnesia, this one still managed to be original due to the massive twist (no spoilers!). We witness Amber's journey as she tries to figure out who she really is and because she knows as much as we do, it was pretty unpredictable for the most part. I liked the character of Amber but I didn't really form too much of an opinion or any attachment, suggesting that she wasn't too well developed. I did, however, really like the character of Dan. He really brought out the best in Amber and their relationship was absolutely adorable. Other than Dan, none of the characters stood out to me at all and we really don't get to know anyone through the book. I'd say that character building is Julie Sykes' weakness but it was the only low point in the book, in my opinion. :)

The plot overall was very strong and, like I said earlier, original. I generally love books about amnesia as I find that whole topic fascinating but Amber has a little something extra that makes it more than just another amnesia book. There were so many unexpected twists and turns making it a gripping read, and it turned out to be the complete opposite of what I was anticipating. A really amazing debut for Julie Sykes. ^_^ I'll give it 4 out of 5.

Thank you Curious Fox for very kindly giving me this book to review! My review is 100% honest and my opinions were in no way affected. 

Lots of love, Cat

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