Times have changed.

Woman looking cockily at the camera as she gets ready to take a shot at love
Woman looking cockily at the camera as she gets ready to take a shot at love
Photo by Moose Photos on Pexels

The boy I had a crush on when I was fifteen taught me a valuable lesson: Women shouldn’t be afraid of making the first move.

“I wanted to date you when we were young,” my teenage crush confessed one drunken night when we were eighteen.

“Me too,” I replied, hoping to feel something magical. A foolish hope. My feelings for him had long since fizzled out. The only emotion left was regret. If I had taken the first step, what would’ve happened between us?

Times Have Changed

According to a recent survey, 70% of women don’t make the first move in a relationship…

Take an honest look at your relationships to improve your life.

Yes and no written in two hands
Yes and no written in two hands
Photo by cottonbro on Pexels

According to the longest ever study on happiness, healthy relationships are the secret to a fulfilling life. The problem? It’s tough to objectively know whether ours are beneficial or detrimental.

A few months ago, I faced this problem. Something inside me was off. And though I knew it was a relationship-related issue, I couldn’t pinpoint the problem’s origin or brainstorm ways to feel better.

As an engineer, I set out to discover a system to measure the quality of my relationships, something that could give me a clearer picture of my situation. …

What twenty-somethings often forget to do before it’s too late

Woman celebrating her fifties
Woman celebrating her fifties
Photo by RODNAE Productions from Pexels

What’s the N°1 piece of advice you’d give your younger self?

I always ask that question to my English students as part of an English assignment. As a writer fascinated by all things human, I chose this topic over any other because I’m always keen to learn from those with more life experience.

Ranging from their late forties to their sixties, my students don’t miss a beat when answering my prompt. And after doing this activity with most of them, I’ve started to notice a pattern.

Over and over, my students over fifty confess they’d tell their younger selves to…

Level up your soft and hard skills; level up your earnings

Woman sipping tea as she does a free online course to upgrade her content creation skills
Woman sipping tea as she does a free online course to upgrade her content creation skills
Photo by Vlada Karpovich from Pexels

I’ll be honest: After taking the free courses in this post, I started cringing at my past content.

It was as though someone had given me glasses, and I’d just realized trees weren’t just a blur of greens and browns but a beautiful tapestry of leaves and branches.

True, you can learn everything a free course can teach through trial and error, but it can be time-consuming and painful. As I always tell my intermediate-advanced English students, the reason we go over the basics of grammar again is that I want to bring awareness to what the perfect phrase looks…

A low-effort way to bring some light to a dark day

Happy woman in a box
Happy woman in a box
Photo by SHVETS production from Pexels

Today started wrong.

I again woke up to a crocodile-related nightmare way before my body felt rested, adding to the sleep-deprived state I’d been sporting this past week. Groggy-eyed, I checked my phone to see if my sister had replied to a text I’d sent her the night before, right after a heated argument.

She hadn’t.

Feeling tired and rejected, I wobbled out of my bedroom. My legs hurt, an uncomfortable and unusual pain that started a few weeks ago. …

Can consistency and freedom coexist?

Woman getting out of a pool with a refreshing look on her face. The image of freedom
Woman getting out of a pool with a refreshing look on her face. The image of freedom
The expression I want to have on my face during my time off. Photo by Andrea Piacquadio on Pexels

Whether we create articles, videos, or weirdly-scented candles, what most of us content creators have in common is a burning desire for freedom.

We want to quit our 9-to-5s and run off to the sunset with our passion-filled side-businesses. We want to be the owners of our schedules, the rulers of our days. We want to work when, how, and with whom we want to — freedom.

The problem is that creating on content platforms like YouTube or this one can quickly make you feel enslaved. …

Life can be hard; why not make it a little bit more special for someone you love?

A cyclist reaching out to help another
A cyclist reaching out to help another
Photo by Everton Vila on Unsplash

A heartfelt compliment can often feel like a helping hand. It can boost our motivation when we feel like quitting, help us push through nightmare-inducing days, and remind us we’re special to someone out there.

But there’s a catch.

When trite and vague, compliments can harm instead of soothe. Despite the complimenter’s best intentions, our self-doubt often raises alarms that make us question the compliment’s validity. Instead of feeling flattered, we wonder about the complimenter’s agenda.

It’s no wonder, then, that a recent study concluded that the most flattering type of praise is specific. When complimenting, pinpointing what truly makes…

How to live long and age well.

Old woman staring happily at the camera
Old woman staring happily at the camera
Photo by Ravi Patel on Unsplash

My grandfather is a SuperAger. Though he’s in his eighties, he’s still designing buildings (because he wants to), solving ninja-level sudokus, and dancing at every party. He’s an example of how aging doesn’t have to be all doom and gloom.

If anything, he says he’s enjoying his eighties way more than his previous decades because he feels freer than ever.

Free from self-doubt. Free from financial debt and burdens (he managed to set himself up for a modest retirement). Free from caring about what others think.

Still, my grandfather is, unfortunately, an exception.

Most people his age are either physically…

Faithfulness doesn’t automatically make you a good partner, nor does it excuse abusive behavior.

Woman showing frustration on her face
Woman showing frustration on her face
Photo taken by Yan Krukov from Pexels

“I was a good boyfriend,” my first boyfriend (let’s call him Billy) said with a confident grin.

Five years after we broke up, we found ourselves in the same city, so we decided to grab a coffee. After half an hour of small talk, we reflected on our past, year-long relationship.

At Billy’s comment, I arched an eyebrow, incredulous.

“What? Why are you looking at me like that?” He asked, exuding the same boyish charm he had when we were younger. Back then, I felt weak in the knees whenever he looked at me like that.

Not anymore.

Straightening my…

No one prepares you for a moment like this.

Thief with a gun
Thief with a gun
Photo by Sammy Williams on Unsplash

I remember when he raised his shirt, a seemingly innocent gesture. He wanted me to know he had a gun tucked in his breeches. He wanted me to be scared.

I wasn’t.

My mind couldn’t reconcile the fact that he sold phone chargers in the street and that now he wanted to steal mine. It was ironic, ridiculous — but painfully real.

Panic building in my gut, I clutched my car’s steering wheel and looked around me. I was stuck in traffic. My door was unlocked. My phone wouldn’t stop buzzing; my grandmother wanted to speak with me.

She had…

Alexa V.S.

Certified INFJ. Travel enthusiast. Fellow writer. English teacher. Business Consultant. Fantasy lover.

Get the Medium app

A button that says 'Download on the App Store', and if clicked it will lead you to the iOS App store
A button that says 'Get it on, Google Play', and if clicked it will lead you to the Google Play store