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3x Author, Engineer, 2x Quora Top Writer. I make videos about self-improvement, body positivity & feminism on YT & IG. | IG: anangsha_

Habits for Smart Writers

This is how I got on a writing streak of 2,000+ words daily for seven straight months (but the word count is not the point).

Image courtesy of the author

Since March, I’ve been on a writing streak. I spent the first two months of self-isolation working on my novel and finished the first draft (87,000+ words). I was also writing a few articles here and there, but then, once my novel was complete, I started writing one article daily.

Aside from the blog posts, I was also writing regular newsletters and working on my upcoming collection of short stories.

People from the Northeast are as much Indians as the people from the rest of the country

Photo: Raamin ka/Unsplash

I was born in Assam — a state in the northeastern part of India. Aside from Assam, there are six other states in this region — Mizoram, Arunachal Pradesh, Manipur, Nagaland, Meghalaya, and Tripura — that are collectively known as “the Seven Sisters.”

Ethnically, the people from the northeastern part of the country have different features from the people in the mainland. We have fairer skin, straight hair, more slender build, and epicanthic folds in our eyes. As the book North-East India: Land, People and Economy makes clear:

“While the original settlers were the Mongoloids, the Indo-Aryan and other groups…

After all, you might be trapped in a prophecy without realizing it!

Photo by Almos Bechtold on Unsplash

If the title caught your attention, you already have your doubts.

Maybe that creaking noise you heard before going to bed last night wasn’t a coincidence. Maybe it was a part of the elaborate scheme the evil overlord had cooked up to lure you out of the comfort of your house into his den?

Or maybe that nice stranger who smiled at you from across the room yesterday wasn’t just trying to be kind. …

A science-backed guide on how to plan your meals, workout sessions, and boost your health without giving up on your favorite foods

Both photos of the author taken seven months apart before and after adopting intermittent fasting + workout schedule (March 2020 vs March 2021)

In July 2020 when I decided to take fitness seriously, I toyed with the idea of adopting intermittent fasting. On one hand, I was terrified by the idea of not eating for long periods of time as I’m a complete foodie and fond of trying out new dishes.

On the other, I knew exercise was only a part of the solution. Complete fitness of the mind and body can only be achieved if you watch what you’re putting in your body. As exercise physiologist Katie Lawton, MEd puts it:

“To lose weight, you need to burn more calories than you…

Life-changing stories I can’t revisit because the pain is too hard to take.

Photo created by asier_relampagoestudio/Freepik

Every once in a while you come across a book that leaves you shattered.

You weep uncontrollably, stain the pages with your tears, and let the author break your heart with their words.

You see yourself in the characters and feel your chest getting tight each time they are in pain. You feel this overwhelming love for them as if they’re your people.

Such books leave you changed. They break you to pieces and lift you back up again. They infuse your heart and soul with lessons you wouldn’t have had the privilege to learn otherwise.

But sadly, you can…

Journal prompts and exercises modeled after the East-Indian ritual ‘Bohag Bihu’ to help you get past your hurdles.

Orchids in spring marking a new beginning (Photo by Yeimy Olivier on Unsplash)

Everything around me feels jaded.

I’m on the verge of a major career switch, and there’s still a month of notice period left.

It’s as if I’m stuck in limbo.

I can’t work wholeheartedly for my new life because some office commitments pull me back. And I can’t throw myself into my old job because I know only a few more days remain. It’s pointless getting invested in something I’m giving up soon.

This is taking a toll on my mental health, making me unable to start anything new, or even see my old projects to completion. I struggle to…

The science behind why you don’t need to keep pushing on indefinitely once you attain your goals.

Photo by Darya Skuratovich on Unsplash

My hometown, Guwahati, is known for its affordable and easily available system of public transport in the form of buses. These buses have a very interesting system of boarding new passengers with a bus conductor to collect money for tickets and call out new passengers.

Since the city has a population density of about 2695 people per square kilometer, the buses are always crowded, especially during peak hours. When all the seats are occupied, people stand in the aisle, gripping the handlebar at the top for support.

It’s a common occurrence to spot a bus crowded to the brim, with…

Stories so powerful, governments and societies tried to keep them hidden forever.

Photo by Nick Fewings on Unsplash

Banned Books Week is an annual awareness campaign that celebrates the freedom to read books written by and representing diverse cultures. Promoted by the American Library Association and Amnesty International, this campaign aims to draw attention to banned and challenged stories and highlight the plight of persecuted individuals.

But why ban books in the first place? As Douglas Perkins writes, “The purpose behind the banning of books comes down to one premise — What I do not like or what may offend me should not be read by others.”

Held during the last week of September since 1982, the Banned…

3 lessons from Rosamund Pike’s Marla Grayson.

Image from Netflix

“It’s lonely at the top.”

I was reading an interview of the Indian superstar Shah Rukh Khan where he quoted this line, mentioning how hard one has to work to reach the top, and it’s very lonely there.

This reminded me of the warning my family and teachers have repeated to me over and over again — how success and happiness are mutually exclusive, and you have to give up on one to achieve the earlier.

I also recently watched the movie I Care A Lot based on the recommendation from my friend Buse Umur. The protagonist, Marla Grayson (played…

Things I learned the hard way that can help you become wiser in money matters

Photo created by drobotdean on

A few days ago, Paytm, an Indian e-commerce company, released an advertisement highlighting the gap in financial literacy between men and women.

In it, a group of 30 men and women of various ages and social backgrounds were asked to stand in a single line while the presenter asked questions. If their answer was “Yes,” the participants had to take a step forward. For every “No,” they had to take a step backward.

In the beginning, the questions were simple. For example, if they learned how to ride a bicycle before the age of 10, if they took music lessons…

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