Here We Start – Issue #53

Iman Ben Chaibah (@ImanBenChaibah)

Iman Ben Chaibah (@ImanBenChaibah)

Iman Ben Chaibah, founder of Sail Publishing, a digital publishing house for online magazines and ebooks, and editor in chief of the Emirati Sail Magazine, an online magazine about community and culture written in English by Emirati columnists. Iman is a multi award winner in digital publishing, entrepreneurship, and literature. Iman has also completed the Leadership Strategies in Magazine Media Course in Yale University. Besides her work in publishing, she also lectures in Canadian University in Dubai.
Iman Ben Chaibah (@ImanBenChaibah)
Artwork by Maryam Zainal (@Maryam_Zainal)

Artwork by Maryam Zainal (@Maryam_Zainal)

August has finally arrived, to some it’s good news cause now Ramadan is over, and as much as we loved it, but our work and our sleeping systems do get a little shaken up with it, and now that it’s over and back to regular hours and caffeine supplies across the day, let’s bring back the productivity and full energy.

To some, August is great news as they finally go on their summer holidays, to have their break that they’ve been longing for all through the year. If you’re one of those, make sure you completely disconnect to have the most out of this break, and come back as fresh and fully recharged as possible.

What are your plans for the summer? How will you be handling the heat? Share with us by commenting below to spread valuable suggestions to our readers!

This month Moza AlMatrooshi is joining Sail team as a columnist. Moza is an Emarati artist and designer. After attaining a BA from Zayed University Dubai in Interior Design in June 2013, she began her journey in trying to find a place in the creative industry in the UAE, starting with catching a plane to Italy to intern in the UAE Pavilion in the Venice Art Biennale 2013. Since then Moza has dabbled in several experiences such as architecture, design, event planning, art exhibitions, and writing for independent publications. Moza continues to journey through life, art, and design.
With mass production sweeping the globe, artisanal talents struggle to retain relevancy. Moza’s column: “The Heart of Making” celebrates the beauty and human value added to a product that is created with skilled hands.

 And now to our 53rd issue for the month of August 2014:

Hats off to our amazing editorial team: Aida AlBusaidy and Dhabya AlMuhairi. Enjoy our reads, and don’t forget to check out our inspired artworks by our creative team: Dana AlAttar, Hayat AlHassan, Marwa Fuad, led by Maryam Zainal.

To keep up with our monthly-published issues and to know about any of our coming events, make sure you register with us by clicking here

Help us spread the word about the magazine and share the articles with your friends!

Warm regards,
Iman Ben Chaibah
Editor in Chief

The Medical Praying Mat: @Timez5

Budoor Al Yousuf (@BAlYousuf)

Budoor Al Yousuf (@BAlYousuf)

Budoor takes a unique look at the world around her. She applies a sense of the mystical to everyday happenstance and turns it on its head. The result is her column: “Mental Pondering”.
With a background in communications, her passion for writing is driven by the need to voice her thoughts. Budoor also hold an eMBA in innovation and Entrepreneurship, other than writing, her interests include reading and traveling.
Budoor Al Yousuf (@BAlYousuf)

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Sponsored Content

Article in brief: Knee and back pain are very common problems in the Arab region due to the people’s lifestyle; gradually the increase of this pain makes it difficult to pray. The solution is a physiological prayer mate developed by Timez5.

Artwork by Hayat AlHassan (@HayatAlH)

Artwork by Hayat AlHassan (@HayatAlH)

A Person’s lifestyle determines many of the health issues that they might face. Joint pain, back pain, diabetes and high blood pressure are some of the critical health issues this part of the world faces due to their lifestyle.

For example, knee pain is more common in the Arab world in particular as their lifestyle includes sitting crossed legged on the floor. According to a study done by Timez5, knee replacement surgery is one of the most common surgeries in this region, its ratio is actually higher than the rest of the world where hip surgery is more common.

Studies show the last few generations have more health related issues than the generations before, this is due to the number of hours employees spend on their desks, the lack of movement by students who are always under pressure from school, and the introduction of video games that stopped children from playing outside.

Unfortunately, due to this modern lifestyle of sitting for long hours, driving everywhere and not moving much, some of the most important and intimate details of a person’s everyday life has been affected, details like the ability to spend time with loved ones and praying pain-free.

More and more people feel the pain of not being able to pray like they used to as they grow older, some of the younger generation also face that problem when facing joint and back pain due to injuries, slip disk or other medical problems. Timez5 offers the first physiological prayer mat as a solution to modern day lifestyle problem that affects one of the most intimate rituals of a person’s life.

Timez5 praying mats are made of 5 layers that have proven to help relief knee pain, back pain, joint aches and posture issues. Its design doesn’t only give older people and younger people with the previously mentioned injuries the chance to pray on the floor comfortably but gradually improves the health of people who use it on regular bases.

The R&D team at Timez5, which includes a scientist specialized in Human Physiology and an ancient medicine specialist, have used ancient knowledge and new technology to bridge the gap created by the modern lifestyle.

The chart below shows how the recurrence of using the Timez5 mat helps relieve pain (charts from Timez5.com):

Screen Shot 2014-08-01 at 1.55.34 AM

Screen Shot 2014-08-01 at 1.47.32 AM

Screen Shot 2014-08-01 at 1.47.44 AM

The mat has other benefits as well, its hygienic layer insures the mat stays clean throughout its use, a weight absorption and distribution mechanism to help distribute the pressure and last but not least a micro-grip to prevent the mat from moving or the person from slipping during prayer.

There is now a solution to help reduce the pain caused by our lifestyles, injuries and medical problems; the solution is a Timez5 mat.

To find out more or to order your own mat visit: http://www.timez5.com/


This article is part 1 of 3 from Timez5 Series, to read the rest:

  1. “Timez5: The Medical Praying Mat”, click here.
  2. “Timez5: The Scientific Praying Mat”, click here.
  3. “Timez5: The Life Changing Praying Mat”, click here.

Interviewing Takatof Volunteers

Omar Al Owais (@OMSAlowais)

Omar Al Owais (@OMSAlowais)

Omar is an International Relations Student at the American University of Sharjah, with a passion towards politics and a devotion towards the rhythmic arts of poetry and prose.
https://omaralowais.wordpress.com
Omar Al Owais (@OMSAlowais)

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Article in brief: this interview with Emirati volunteers gives us an insight into the volunteering scene in the United Arab Emirates.

Artwork by Marwah Fuad (Twitter: @marwah_f1, Instagram: @Elmeem_artistry )

Artwork by Marwah Fuad (Twitter: @marwah_f1, Instagram: @Elmeem_artistry )

Maimonides says “Give a man a fish and you feed him for a day; teach a man to fish and you feed him for a lifetime.” From this quote we learn that the effects of donating are only short term whereas the effects of offering voluntary services are long lasting.

An interview was recently conducted with three of Takatof’s volunteers:

    • Halima Juma Al Manqoosh – a 23 years old Emirati with a B.A in International Studies and minor in Communications and Media Sciences from Zayed University.
    • Sultan Jamal Al Ameri – a 27 years old employee at Abu Dhabi Police and a university student. He is an avid lover of volunteering.
    • Anes Mansour Al Dh’alei – a volunteer at Takatof for the past 9 years and is the facilities coordinator of Takatof volunteering activities in Abu Dhabi.

Sail: Why do you believe in volunteering? To what extent do you believe that it is beneficial to society?

Halima: I believe in volunteering because it makes positive changes in the society. I believe that each one of us, regardless of our backgrounds, have special attributes within ourselves that allow us to contribute effectively and bring the notion of volunteering to a high level. In my opinion, volunteering is a fuel for the society’s spirit, it impacts the social behavior of people, their views regarding how to provide comfortable lives for others, and how we as people can work together and find alternative solutions to solve issues.

Sultan: The field of volunteering symbolizes generosity and giving; attributes which we have learnt from our father, the late Sheikh Zayed Al Nahyan. It teaches giving without waiting for personal benefit, to take initiative in creating an environment that invests people’s energies to provide assistance to others.

Anes: I believe that volunteering is beneficial because you are giving back to our country that has given us a lot. It also teaches you to be patient and to persevere.

Sail: According to your experience, how has the UAE as a whole changed in terms of volunteering? 

Halima: The phenomenon of volunteering in the UAE is not new; in fact, the UAE’s society has been supporting the concept of volunteering for a long time starting from its culture and tradition that believe in volunteering and helping others. In the past few years, we can see that there are more and more people, particularly the young people, participating in voluntary work not just to provide help, but also to symbolize their love for their country. In addition, we can notice that there are new volunteering centers opening to fulfill different types of voluntary work and tasks.

Sultan: Volunteering has become a leading activity in the Emirati society, as it allows the youth to prove themselves and to leave positive fingerprints in the society. It must also be said that volunteering is an inherited feature in this society, for helping others was the focal point of the lives of our forefathers.

Sail: In what ways can the Emirati society be a more volunteer-orientated society?

Halima: Making Emirati society a more volunteer-orientated society depends on essential factors such as the willingness of a person to be a volunteer; the number of voluntary opportunities that are offered and what does the meaning of volunteering mean in everyone’s minds. To do that, we need to spread awareness among the youth to attract more volunteers working in the many fields available as well as expand upon that with their creativity.

Sultan: Our youth merely need encouragement and positive influence to be more active volunteers.

Sail: What do you do in your time when you’re not volunteering, what made you start volunteering, do you feel you’ve changed since you started?

Halima: Before I became a volunteer I used to spend my time studying, writing stories or helping my friends in their studies. What made me start volunteering is that I wanted to gain skills; it was the time to discover my interests and what I’m passionate about. Volunteering was one of the best ways to achieve those goals; it helped me to overcome my weaknesses and since I started volunteering, I feel that I have changed and became more confident and able to communicate effectively. Now volunteering is part of my life. I believe it is one of my specializations in which I can take initiative and be creative to benefit the society.

Sultan: Before I got into volunteering, I used to kill time in useless activities. However, volunteering taught me how to achieve my goals and use my time effectively.

A Weight Loss Regime

Dr. Mariam Ketait (@ebbbndflow)

Dr. Mariam Ketait (@ebbbndflow)

Dr. Mariam Ketait is a general practitioner specializing in family medicine, with masters in quality in healthcare and various alternative healing certifications including Theta Healing, Spiritual response therapy, Pranic healing and Access consciousness.
Mariam looks at health from a holistic perspective and believes that our bodies respond to our thought patterns and emotional behaviors. She also believes that health is attainable and that a happy life is a healthy one. Mariam created the concept of "ebb and flow" to reflect how we can deal with the various tides of life by flowing in harmony with our inner wellbeing to achieve health. The column will cover common health topics with an approach to conditions in a mind body spirit framework.
Dr. Mariam Ketait (@ebbbndflow)

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Article in brief: the author takes a quick look on why we gain weight and what stops us from losing it.

Artwork by Dana AlAttar (@DanaAlAttar)

Artwork by Dana AlAttar (@DanaAlAttar)

Obesity is considered one of the most important predetermines of chronic medical conditions. As waistlines expand, so do the chances of being diagnosed with diabetes, increased cholesterol problems and heart conditions.

I often get asked what determines the rate of response of following a weight loss regime, why some diets work and others don’t, and what type of workout gives the fastest results.

The good news is: ANY diet or exercise regime that feels right to you will probably give you the best results. Now let’s dig into the details.

Body:

There are many physical reasons as to why your body might not be metabolizing at the rate it is supposed to. Eating habits and calorie intake is one of the main reasons.

So before looking at medical conditions that might be stopping you from reducing weight, start by looking at your energy expenditure. Make sure that your input (in terms of calories) equals your output (physical exercise).

Also, your thyroid plays a role in the metabolism and any thyroid dysfunctions can result in weight loss or gain. Women with polycystic ovaries often face weight gain or inability to lose weight. Other factors include liver disorders, glucose, and insulin as well as increased cortisol levels.

Mind:

Eating habits are often learned from home – how often you eat, how big or small the portions are, social eating (when food becomes associated with socializing), when to stop and when to snack. So noting down your eating habits can be a good start.

Weight loss starts from having the will to make changes to your eating habits happen and a desire to eat healthier in order to feel stronger and look better. Thoughts like “I can and I will” make the biggest difference.

Spirit:

Emotional eating is one of the most common causes of weight gain; this includes a range of emotional conditions from a stressful day at work to full blown depression. Food comes to the rescue and often represents something else – love, security or nurture.

People who have been hurt and are holding on to those emotions have a difficult time letting go of the weight as it represents some form of comfort.

Rx.

– If you are “trying” to lose weight, the first thing to change is your mindset. You start losing weight when you know you can.

– Make sure your hormones are in check through medical tests.

– Eat 3 meals and 2 snacks (5 times a day) to your maintain a balanced metabolism.

– Find a workout that makes you happy. Walking for 30 minutes a day can make a big difference if it becomes a habit. Any other form of exercise must be enjoyable and shouldn’t feel like a punishment. Whether it’s tennis, swimming, zumba, Pilates or yoga, as long as you are happy doing it. Your workout should be enjoyable so you don’t get bored and stop working out so soon.

– Lastly, any unresolved traumas or pain can stay in our bodies if we don’t release them. Being able to look at them from a neutral perspective and gain the lessons learned without holding onto the emotional baggage aids in losing weight dynamically.

Our bodies are gifts from God; we nourish them with healthy food, good deeds and graceful thoughts. And with that, everything is possible. How does it get any better than that?

The Iceberg Theory

Alia Al Hazami (@AliaAlHazami)

Alia Al Hazami (@AliaAlHazami)

Column: Hidden Promises
Alia is an AUS student double majoring in International Studies and English literature. She is also the author of Alatash fictional novel. Her main goal is to make a change and empower the youth. Her column is meant to help the younger generations deal with tough situations. It was given that title as hidden promises is what us teenagers often believe; false promises.
Alia Al Hazami (@AliaAlHazami)

Article in brief: The author here emphasizes the need to dig deeper and not only focus on the surface.

Artwork by Maryam Zainal (@Maryam_Zainal)

Artwork by Maryam Zainal (@Maryam_Zainal)

‘From knowledge to practice’, shouldn’t it be the opposite?Knowledge will only get us so far if we use it correctly.

People often believe that by possessing knowledge, practicing what we have been taught and applying it to the real world would be easy. While in fact, it’s quite the contrary.

Practicing and striving to get better at what we do is key to igniting the torch of knowledge that will guide us through life. As a matter of fact, no one is going to help us on the long run but the knowledge we own, and that’s a rule I keep reminding myself of.

We humans are beautifully faulted. We are complex organisms, but we’re not that confusing. What irritates me the most is that we don’t dig deeper. I can’t deny that some people do, but the majority doesn’t. We are stuck at this place where we see the tip of things and not everything.

We just want a piece of information that will get us further along the trail, leaving us feeling a little less dumb. That’s completely wrong of us as we live at a crucial age. We are the future and we need to do something about it.

The problem of our generation is that most of us rush through everything as we live in an age where everything is expected to be delivered instantly. Still, that doesn’t mean that this method works with knowledge. Obtaining knowledge takes time and needs to be discussed in depth in order to fully comprehend an idea, but not everyone thinks like that. Thing is, like with the ship Titanic, we only care to see the iceberg from the top, not realizing how huge and deadly it was from the bottom.

Most of us settle with knowing some points that will help us go on with the certain topic without falling in confusion. Yes, we do know a lot but that doesn’t mean we should stop seeking knowledge. We should do our utmost best to know more. Yes, we do know a lot, but we don’t know enough.

My advice to you dear readers is to keep growing and learning. I know that most people probably think that I’m in no high position to be giving this kind of advice but maturity isn’t determined by age, it’s determined by experience.

Think deeper and widen your mindset. Start refusing to live in what’s normal as pleasing people will only be our downfall. Practice in order to pursue knowledge and know that where you come from doesn’t really matter as long as you try to make a change.

Everything starts from nothing, so instead of thinking like we can’t achieve a change, we need to put the effort in achieving so. Never stop evolving and practicing because that’s the only way we can preserve our knowledge.

Challenge Accepted; The Joy In Being Happy

Haif Zamzam (@haifnothaifa)

Haif Zamzam (@haifnothaifa)

Column: Joie de Vivre, Ex-Column: Sense and Sustainability
Haif Zamzam is a bon viveur who just can’t get enough of life. Her inflexibility for the norm coupled with her constant hunt for a challenge pushed her to the private sector where she is a professional in a top-tier consulting firm. Haif has an MBA from INSEAD and a Bachelors degree from the AUS. Through her column, Joie de Vivre, French for “Joy of Living,” Haif hopes to show how living with your head in the clouds is highly underrated.
Haif Zamzam (@haifnothaifa)

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Article in brief: the author shares her experience with going through the 100 happy days challenge.

Picture taken from 100happydays.com

Picture taken from 100happydays.com

Earlier this year, I got an email from a friend of mine with a title that read “Are you up for the challenge?” My competitive side kicked in and I was excited to see what the link she had sent was about. In front of me was a bright screen screaming “CAN YOU BE HAPPY FOR 100 DAYS IN A ROW?” There it was, the #100HappyDays challenge that promised things like “be in a better mood every day” and “fall in love during the challenge” among others. As an optimist-turned-pessimist, I was itching to get back into the glass-half-full crowd so I signed my next 100 days away to happiness.

Day 1: One of my close friends sends me a box of French pastries to my hotel room so I start to think that things are already looking up for me.

Day 2: I get some news that results in a massive blow to my happy efforts. I remind myself that I’m meant to be happy so I take a deep breath and accept the situation. I remember that I am blessed for the life I have and continue my march towards happiness.

Day 23: I get into a (minor) car accident and I am late to a meeting with very senior people because of it. I fall flat on my face causing my abaya to rip. I can’t focus in the meeting because I’m shaking. Everything about this day is bad. Everything. Except that I go home and see my family. That makes me happy. I continue trying to reach my happy place.

Day 48: After a super intense week at work, I jump on a flight for a weekend trip to Istanbul with one of my close friends. Happy feels good!

Day 61: I hit a bird on my way to Abu Dhabi. I’m in shock. I’ve never hit anything. I’m in utter shock. I get closer to my house. I hit a cat with my car. The bumper is ruined. The cat is dead. I sob in my car. I hit a cat. I have never hit a bird or a cat and today, on Day 61, I hit both. I have a 6:30AM flight from Dubai the next morning, which means that I have to leave Abu Dhabi at 3:30AM. It’s already 10PM. I get home in complete shock. My parents are there and I explain to them what happened. Midnight strikes and my mother gives me a hug and starts to read Qur’an to ward off any evil eye that may have come my way. I’m home though, with my family. That makes me happy.

Day 68: My niece’s birthday is today. She turned two. I’m so grateful to be here. I’m so happy.

Day 69: It’s my parent’s anniversary. My brothers, sister-in-law and I join them for a beautiful dinner in Abu Dhabi. It’s all so beautiful. Life is beautiful

Day 95: Family trip! Except that things didn’t go exactly as planned (think unforeseen visa problems and literally flying to the wrong airport). Where are we? No one has any idea. My baby brother and I check Google Maps and we are nowhere near our final destination. We have to take the morning flight so we find a nearby hotel. We meet downstairs for dinner. The food is incredible. We have no idea where we are, but we are together. Loving this!

I’ve had enough time to reflect on this exercise. Although it’s true that I didn’t find love or the internal switch that makes all my thoughts happy, what I did find was far better. I found contentment. I remembered the little things that made me happy. I realized that I was the only person who could change how I react to something, so I did. When I hit a bump in the road, I didn’t dwell on it; I took a deep breath, accepted that I needed to do something about it and did it. That made me a lot more productive. It gave me more energy to do the things I love with the people I love. It gave me time to reflect on how grateful I am for the family and friends that I have. It gave me time to be thankful for all the professional challenges I face as they continue to push me outside my boundaries and grow in my career. It made me many things, including an optimist-turned-pessimist-turned-optimist.

Parfait: A Delicious And Healthy Kick-Starter

Sidiqa Sohail (@sid_90)

Sidiqa Sohail (@sid_90)

Column: Musings of An Entrepreneur

Sidiqa is 25 years old and is half-Emirati and half-Pakistani. She has a Bachelor’s degree in International Relations from the American University of Sharjah and a Master’s degree in Conflict Prevention, Sustainable Peace, and Security from the University of Durham in the UK. Sidiqa owns and manages the boutique-café concept store “Spontiphoria” in Wasl Square, Jumeirah.
Sidiqa Sohail (@sid_90)

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Article in brief: This cool parfait is so sweet, creamy, and delicious that you’d be forgiven for mistaking it for a sugar-filled and calorie-laden sinful treat. 

Picture taken by Sadiqa Sohail (@Sid_90)

Picture taken by Sadiqa Sohail (@Sid_90)

The idea of dessert after a meal is something I always find myself thinking of once I’m done with dinner. Perhaps I do indulge in the odd chocolate soufflé or tiramisu more than the average person but I’ve learned that it is important to draw the line somewhere. What I really want after a meal is something that is cold, sweet, and creamy and so two years ago, I came up with this parfait that ticked all those boxes while still being a guilt-free treat that is actually really good for you!

Instead of layering the yogurt and the honey separately, I decided to mix them together and discovered what I can quite definitely say it’s one of my favorite tastes. Who knew that yogurt mixed with honey would taste just like dessert cream? It’s the best thing ever. I can eat bowlfuls of it and not feel guilty. If you want a bit of chocolate, why not mix in some cocoa powder with it?

So here’s a recipe for this yogurt berry parfait that I still continue to live on every morning. The best part of this is that it’s so versatile, you can mix and match and custom-make your own version. Change the berries; add bananas or apples or any other fruit. I personally think peaches would work really well! Add some flax seed or cocoa powder. Instead of digestive biscuits, you might want to use granola or chopped almonds and walnuts.

Come up with your version and tag me on Instagram!

Ingredients

1 cup Greek yogurt

3 tbsp honey

½ cup berries of choice (such as blueberries and strawberries)

2 digestive biscuits, roughly crushed

¼ tsp ground cinnamon

Procedure

Mix the Greek yogurt with the honey until well-blended together and smooth.

Mix the berries together in a bowl.

Take half of the crushed digestive biscuits and divide between two glasses.

Take half of the berries and spread over the digestive biscuits.

Spoon half of the yogurt mixture in each glass over the berries and top with the remaining berries.

Spoon the rest of the yogurt over the berries and top with the remaining digestive biscuits and sifted cinnamon.

The Pursuit of Success

Sarah Al Marashi (@Sarah888)

Sarah Al Marashi (@Sarah888)

Column: LOL – Living Out Loud
Sarah is an award-winning entrepreneur, business development specialist, life coach, writer, banking and investments professional with over 15 years of experience. She is the co-founder of the award-winning firm Infin8Ventures. Through her column, she hopes to re-ignite the dreamer in all of us and inspire us to make those dreams a reality.
Sarah Al Marashi (@Sarah888)

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Article in brief: the author explores the definition of success and invites the reader to visit a new perspective.

Artwork by Maryam Zainal (@Maryam_Zainal)

Artwork by Maryam Zainal (@Maryam_Zainal)

Success is defined as the accomplishment of an aim or purpose. As we grow we learn to associate success with the approval in our parents’ tone of voice, their smiles and body language when we do something well. When we start school we learn to measure it by the grades on our report card or by the cheers and applause of an audience when we perform well in a sports activity, play or dance.

As we move on from the academic to the professional world, success takes on different measures and means different things whether it’s the next promotion, the car we drive, the brands of clothing and jewelry we wear or the address we live at. We start measuring achievement with stuff that we can show as visual displays of our accomplishments and the lifestyle we lead. With the pursuit of this comes the pressure to move to the next milestone, be it a bigger house, a more expensive car, a higher educational qualification or a higher position in the organization we work for. Some might argue that this pressure is self-inflicted and it is this same drive that fuels people to continue to innovate, break records and explore new frontiers. Some might call this ambition others call it greed. It doesn’t really matter what you call it; what matters is what you feel as you travel this path and whether or not you feel successful?

The media has often shared stories of successful people who are unhappy, battling depression and addictions and tragically ending their lives despite having all the materialistic displays associated with success. The truth is despite being successful in the eyes of society, quite often that feeling of being successful is missing and instead it comes with high levels of stress, negative feelings of scarcity, under achievement, and self-limiting beliefs of not being good enough or having done enough. Quite often the reason behind this disconnection goes back to the definition of success, “accomplishment of a purpose”. Purpose could be anything from a mother whose purpose is to love and nurture her children to a scientist whose purpose is to test theories or a devout person who might be seeking spiritual growth in prayer.

It is in the knowledge of what one’s life purpose is and the pursuit of that, which brings success. Look at examples of successful people in various walks of life; they are the ones who pursue their life purpose with passion. They are the ones’ who are able to combine what they do for a living and what they were born to do, and it is the combination of the two of these that leads to success. When living a life that is in line with their purpose all negative feelings dissipate leaving only the joy of accomplishment and being aligned with one’s self.

Having this awareness is important as people often pursue what they think success should be; and when fears of failure or disapproval set in, they often become disconnected from their true passion, living an unfulfilled life. The true pursuit should be towards the feeling of success associated with identifying one’s life purpose and doing what they were born to do. When the journey is in line with your true calling and you have made a life out of living on “purpose” that is the realization of a dream; that is success.

Ralph Waldo Emerson said it best “To laugh often and much, to win the respect of intelligent people and the affection of children; to earn the appreciation of honest critics and endure the betrayal of false friends; to appreciate beauty; to find the best in others; to leave the world a bit better, whether by a healthy child, a garden patch or a redeemed social condition; to know even one life has breathed easier because you have lived. This is to have succeeded.”

The Power of A United Group With A Common Goal

Alwid Lootah (@AlwidLootah)

Column: Lost in Reverie
Alwid is a young lady who aims to become the change she wants to see in this world by spreading positivity and leading youth towards the road of unlimited possibilities. She recently founded her own website hearmyeche.com through which she aims to become the voice of youth and share unrecognized talents. Her column “Lost in reverie” is a place where she allows her thoughts and emotions to flow and a place where she can hopefully create a change.

Latest posts by Alwid Lootah (@AlwidLootah) (see all)

Article in brief: The author expresses the strength in being a united group rather than a single individual with a dream and how finding people with the same goals as yours could make your future brighter.

Artwork by Maryam Zainal (@Maryam_Zainal)

Artwork by Maryam Zainal (@Maryam_Zainal)

It is easier to defeat a soldier than to defeat an army and easier to step over a rock than to step over a mountain of rocks. There is strength in a unit and strength in a group joined together by a common goal. There’s unity in a family, among friends, in a classroom, between colleagues or simply among people who share the same dream.

Yes, there will be many that wont necessarily support or agree with your dreams but on the other hand, there are many more that strive for what you want. We see people all over the world aiming to positively change it, to force what they believe in and make it a reality to live in, so imagine the change a group could make. If a single person could sweep a crowd to where they wish to, what could a unit do?

I have always believed in common goals, in that moment when you find people who share your dreams, people who want to achieve the same goals you are determined to achieve. In that moment, the future in my eyes appears to be so much brighter because I believe in the power of a unit. A single person could achieve so much but a group of people could achieve so much more.

Seeing people united together to fight for education, or united together to give definitely warms my heart. All those campaigns that were launched during this Ramadan and all the new organizations that appeared in the past few years are proof enough that with cooperation and unity comes achievements and success.

You could wish to be the next Neil Armstrong or the first successful version of yourself; you could have the weirdest dreams that make you happy just thinking about them. Imagine finding people with the same strange wishes, someone to help you through it all, people to share their knowledge and you’d share yours. That’s what being united means; you’d exchange experience and gain so much more.

So join hands, find your unit, find those people that make your dreams a little less wild and create something amazing together. Create a campaign that could change lives, become a leader to those who need guidance, start a new project where different handprints create an art piece and never doubt the power of a unit.

The Tailor of The Neighborhood

Moza Almatrooshi (@mozaalmatrooshi)

Moza Almatrooshi (@mozaalmatrooshi)

Column: The Heart of Making
Moza Almatrooshi is an Emarati artist and designer. After attaining a BA from Zayed University Dubai in Interior Design in June 2013, Moza began her journey in trying to find a place in the creative industry in the UAE, starting with catching a plane to Italy to intern in the UAE Pavilion in the Venice Art Biennale 2013. Since then Moza has dabbled in several experiences such as architecture, design, event planning, art exhibitions, and writing for independent publications. Moza continues to journey through life, art, and design.
With mass production sweeping the globe, artisanal talents struggle to retain relevancy. This column celebrates the beauty and human value added to a product that is created with skilled hands.
Moza Almatrooshi (@mozaalmatrooshi)

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Article in brief: This article visits a small tailoring shop and enters its back-room to reveal the process of the tailor and what he tailors. 

Artwork by Marwah Fuad (Twitter: @marwah_f1, Instagram: @Elmeem_artistry )

Artwork by Marwah Fuad (Twitter: @marwah_f1, Instagram: @Elmeem_artistry )

A web of service shops intertwine with one another in a small local neighborhood; a grocery store is lined up next to a stationary store, a photography studio, a car service workshop, a cafeteria, a phone shop, and a tailor, who like everyone else working in these stores is summoned to address the needs of his customers upon hearing the car honk.

Such is the case of Babu; one of the master tailors working in Al Sanabil Tailors in Ajman. Babu and his peers Ali and Liton have come from India to the United Arab Emirates in 1986 to try their hand at the traditional embroidery business. Twenty eight years later, the shop’s modesty is kept and retained by the same level of modesty of the most requested item favored by the customers: the embroidered jalabiya, otherwise known as Mekhawarah.

The traditional dress worn by Emirati females has been an inseparable fabric of Emirati customs long before the union of the seven emirates. With styles and tastes in fashion ever changing, due to the globalization poured and centered in the UAE along with most countries in the world, the traditional jalabiya remains a resilient and relevant item. Girls revisit its style often during Friday family gatherings and the holy month of Ramadan. This pleases Babu as he prefers to stitch up a jalabiya rather than any other style of clothing.

Seven sewing machines chatter ferociously in the backroom of Babu’s shop while the capable hands of the tailors working there tame them and marry the thread with the textile under the hasty poking of the needles. Their hands guide the fabric where it’s meant to be marked and where it’s supposed to be sealed up. The machines in this case are powerless and are brought to a roar and a silent halt at the whim of the experts controlling them. Aside from the use of machinery, the tailors utilize their eyes and hands as experienced and reliable tools of creation.

Artwork by Moza AlMatrooshi (@MozaAlMatrooshi)

Artwork by Moza AlMatrooshi (@MozaAlMatrooshi)

The story of how the tailor extracts the vision of what we desire to wear and transforms it into a tangible reality is one often neglected in a time where ready to wear clothing is conveniently abundant. For the customer, the process starts with choosing a style, textiles and colors then handing them over to the tailor, then the process pauses then picks back up and ends after receiving the stitched up and customized product. But for the tailor, the story has a longer train of events. The garment placed on the table is dissected and ready for customization according to the sizes and cuts preferred and ordered. Pleats pinched and folded around the waistline of a skirt, needles swiftly penetrating the thin and fragile face of the garment to embroider thread and beads on its surface, lace appliqués embellished on abayas, talli coiling up the cuffs of a jalabiya, all this and more is assembled in the neighborhood tailor’s daily to-do list.