More Questions than Answers

Aside

What if the reason you want to stay is the same reason you have for leaving?

The life you never wanted is the comfort in knowing yourself enough

The place you never wanted to be is the only solace you have

What happens when you no longer know who you are but maybe you never really did?

What happens when you find who you are and it’s no one you ever really expected

You feel stifled but content

Enraged but calm

The dichotomies of good and evil within your own mental existence rage within your head

You know you’re more creative when you’re mentally fucked up

But you know you don’t want to live in that darkness

You see the hope and the pain in the world and want to save everyone you can -yourself included

The cynical realist who can no longer handle the cynicism alone

You feel like you’re screaming in a crowded room and no one’s looking up

Yet you feel like everyone is passing judgement and examining your entire being

How do you deal?

What do you do?

Do you ask for help and put your trust in others that can only do so much?

Do you try to do it yourself as much as you can?

Do you again change the status quo in hopes that a different physical and mental state will let you see things clearly?

Where do you go from here?

Sick of complaining about the world yet in no position to change it

No adult takes you seriously because you’re young

No kid takes you seriously because you’re not one of them

Where do the lines no longer blur?

When does the love no longer hurt or harm you?

How do you rest in peace within your own mind?

Do you channel the energy into something else?

Try to let it go?

Embrace it and see where you end up?

Or run screaming in another direction?

Who’s to know, who’s to say

There are no specifically right answers in terms of yourself – you decide what’s worth it

You decide who you want to be and who you are

But when does the mask of who you’re showing the world come off?

The person you show and the person you are, aren’t the same

Or maybe they are.

Are the masks we wear pieces of the puzzle or do they complete the puzzle?

How do you know?

How do you decide?

Where do you go from here?

Know that you have but one life to live and everyone gets hurt along the way.

Know that not one of us gets out unscathed

That despite the horrors of our own internalizations of reality we can change the status quo

We can make a difference

We can know and learn from ourselves.

We don’t have to do it alone but it will probably feel that way.

In a world of 7 billion people – who do you want to be?

Explore the possibilities

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The New Golden Rule

In a world of chaos and crazy I think it’s time we readjusted the golden rule. You know the one that you had drilled into your head since Kindergarten?

Do unto others as you’d have them do unto you/treat others as you’d like to be treated.

I think it’s time we changed it to treat yourself as you would like to be treated.

I’ve known a lot of people in this world so far. I’ve lived in 4 states, traveled through 8 countries, 3 continents and I’m a child of the internet age. I’m the kind of person that others tell their life stories to just because I happen to be sitting there. Sometimes it’s really cool and other times you want to tell the person okay it’s time to leave the bathroom now. And seemingly enough there’s the answer to why women go to the bathroom in pairs. Escape plan among other things haha. Anyway, the point is I can name more people that have suffered from depression and anxiety than I can name that haven’t.

We have but one life on this planet and we need to treat it as such. By all means have as much fun as you see fit. Seek adventure, money, success, fame, love take your pick. But treat yourself with kindness not just those around you.

You know that inner monologue that we’ve groomed since infancy, the one that says you can’t do this why would you even try? The one that says you’re failed or fucked up. The one that says I should have done better than that or gets cocky when they knew they were right. The same one that says fuck yeah this is a good idea when you’re drunk and 9/10 times it’s not, but we do it anyway. Yeah yeah, learning experiences are great, but  let’s keep everyone away from the emergency room. We need to hone the relationship we have with ourselves before we’re ever really going to know what we want and how to achieve it. Because if we don’t believe in our own abilities then what can we believe?

Everyone has to start from the beginning when learning or trying for something. Everyone is a novice before they become an expert. Everyone learns and falls and learns more and succeeds and learns more and succeeds more with a failure or two thrown in for kicks because hey, life is what it is and again, we’re human. But we don’t need to become the pain we’ve felt. We don’t need to harness the anger or resentment or hurt or displacement if we don’t want to. I’m not going to get all “being positive is a choice” because some shit just sucks and it’s that simple. But we go through things and if you’re anything like I am or like most of the people I know are, you’re your own worst enemy and that doesn’t have to be the case.

You want to have successful relationships? Stop having a dysfunctional one with yourself. You want friends you can count on and people that care and are loyal to you? Stop creating a monster and toxic environment within. Misery loves company and most of the time the things you think have a way of coming to fruition. Like if you’re afraid you’re going to run into someone when you walk into a restaurant and yeah you were right you did… self fulfilling there. I’ve done it so many inexplicable times myself. It just happens. But learn how to be kind to yourself. Learn how to experience joy in the hurt. Learn to look at your past and say “so what.” You don’t live there anymore.

We all have a past. We all have a relationship with ourselves. If we all learned to treat ourselves the way we wanted to be treated I think we’d all be a little happier and we’d all treat each other with a little more dignity and respect. Food for thought.

Los Angeles Chronicles: Figuring Myself Out – More

I found it! That Eureka moment that everything clicked. And ironically it was while reading someone else’s blog. I’ve been on a journey unlike that which I’ve known in the past. I’ve been allowing myself to feel when I feel and “be” when I need to be. I’ve actually been listening to my own intuition of sorts when it comes to where I want to go next or where I want to go at all. I’ve dealt with so many different things and I almost forget how far I’ve come. How many lives I’ve actually lived. Each part of my life I’ve become a different person. Not in a schizophrenic kind of way, but more in a different phase of life, yet still completely different persons at times.

Who I was at 5 wasn’t who I was at 15, at 20, at 25. I’ve believed in myself and not. I’ve taken leaps of faith and typical risks to get where I’ve been. I’ve gained friends and loves and family along the way. I’ve lost friends and loves and family along the way. I’m not the same person I was 10 minutes ago and time keeps moving me forward.

I’ve finally been realizing that even though I lost my job and I didn’t think I could stay in California, that I’m going to no matter what. Because I had to admit to myself that it was something I still wanted. I had to admit my own feelings. I had to get to where I got and I had to be lost along the way. I’ve been lost for the last 6+ years and it isn’t anyone’s fault. I lived life into the unknown and that’s where I’ve stayed because the next step isn’t one that is already decided for me. Nor could it be.

I’ve always hated the saying “everything happens for a reason.” I do however like the saying “there are no such things as coincidences.” Everything happens for a reason makes it sound like life is living me rather than me living my life. No such thing as a coincidence feels more real to me, more forgiving and even a little less harsh, but still more real. We all make mistakes. For some it’s a haircut that signifies the end of the world and for others it’s a divorce or the loss of a close relative or friend. Some of us have crazy amounts of student loan debt and others are already at the top of their careers ready to buy a house for their dog.

But we all go through phases. We all have to learn how to feel what we feel or at least admit to ourselves that we can feel. The aha moment I had has come after two really good weeks for me mentally and physically. It was while I was reading “4 questions Google can never answer for you.” Little to say it talked about us searching for – information – when in reality what we’re trying to figure out are – feelings -.

I spent most of my life denying I had feelings. I spent most of my life pushing them down in misery or in pain. I’ve been doing a lot of searching lately and I’ve been seeking a lot of knowledge in general. I’ve already built a life for myself in a place of my choosing. Not being ideal quite yet I still have a ways to go I did it nonetheless. I’ve made a few friends and had a few crushes, dated someone, switched jobs, made, spent, earned, lost and wished for money.

I’ve found my own world. I’ve made it one I can be proud to be a part of and one that I will continue to choose despite anything else. The time may come where I’ve grown or changed again and my location or my personal needs change as well and that’s okay.

The other thing I’ve realized is that as a kid we all look at adults like we have the answers to life’s problems. The problem is when we get there no one has a clue. Well no one but you has a clue or a key to unlock your life but you. It’s amazing to have people to enjoy the ride along the way, but you’re the one who has to choose your own fate.

If I spent half as much time fighting myself as I did just doing what I thought I wanted or needed or both, I’d be a completely different person. But right now I am who I choose to be and I will change again. So what comes next? Well hopefully a job and a bigger foundation on the life that I want.

Los Angeles Chronicles: Being Lost is Relative & so is Being Found

Here I am a year and a half into the “life I always dreamt about”… I’m without direction and fairly sick of looking to the past. Needless to say this experience hasn’t been what I’ve expected it to be – then again nothing ever is. In some ways it’s been a million times better than I could imagine and in other ways it’s one of the most life shattering situations to be in.

I am in love with Los Angeles. I love California in more ways than I can describe. The feelings of contentment and fullness. The clarity and the head space have both completely improved within. Yet, I’m so lost. I never expected to start a new life and end up with the job of my dreams, the love of my life, and a big fat bank account in a year. Honestly I’d barely expect that in the next five years (mostly because I’m realistic). But this entire experience has left me with one major thought — what do you do when you’re feeling completely lost, yet you’re finally feeling okay with who you are again?

Okay, wait a minute – hold that thought. Rewind…. I lost my job back at the end of May. I’ve been attempting to find my way since then, but I’ve been coming up short. I’ve gotten multiple interviews and have had call backs on second rounds, yet this time I can’t seem to seal the deal. After three months of agonizing over my next step and whether or not I get to stay here because of monetary responsibilities, I realized I’m just as lost as I was when I left, but now I’m a person I want to be.

I’ve come a long way from the person I had become when I left my hometown for the third time. I took a giant risk because I owed it to myself. I have given a lot and I have done what I have to do. Yet here I am worse off than I was when I got here. Feeling like a failure because I have nothing to show for this last year, but what lies within, I realize again…. being lost is relative. I may have found myself in a lot of ways, but when you’re lacking direction what do you do? I chased a dream to get here. I took a leap of faith and it initially paid off. I’m in a position to have to do whatever I absolutely must to stay, but I also have to admit to myself I absolutely do not want to leave.

All of these things come back to our own ideals and expectations of where we thought we’d be at this age. I have nothing I’ve ever wanted, yet in the last week I’ve been happier than I ever have in this country. Yes – this country. Some of it is letting yourself be. Some of it is realizing set backs happen, things don’t always fit, and it’s okay to feel what you feel. The difference is admitting the shit exists, but realizing that you don’t have to let it consume you.

I’ve dealt with depression for most of my life. I fight my own demons daily just to get out of bed. Sometimes I look in the mirror and realize hey the demon is me. Sometimes I look in the mirror and I scream internally “you fucken got this stop doubting yourself.” And sometimes I fly without a net hoping for the best because uncharted territory and the unknown have taken over my life. But I digress…

It’s been a pretty great week for me so far. The month of August is turning my world around and all of it is happening for the better. The culmination of the last two months doesn’t define me. Nothing is set in stone and this is NOT the end. I need to remember to let myself have what I want and let myself be happy when shit hits the fan. I need to remember that school’s over and the “right path” in terms of life really doesn’t exist. Never having an answer to the question “what do you want to be when you grow up” I’m still searching for a career but maybe the issue is I haven’t invented it yet.

We are the creators of our own worlds. We have to take the good and the bad. When we feel we have nothing to show, we need to find small ways to prove it to ourselves. When we feel lost, we need to do something that makes us found in the space in which we exist. When we doubt our abilities sometimes we just need a friend. And sometimes we just have to play the game and play in general. Thus realizing that life doesn’t need to be so serious and that everything in life is temporary. And sometimes – I need to take my own advice and realize that life is good. Sometimes we all need reminders that we deserve to be happy and just let ourselves accept them.

Revisiting Expectations: 5 years later

For those following along this is the 10th and final chapter of what would be a book of sorts.

Expectations are a tricky thing. Whether you think something will go poorly or stunningly you are usually right. If you put time and effort into something and hope it goes well there’s a chance it will but you never know. We all had a vision of what we thought our lives would be when we were in our teens. We all found out that what we thought would happen.. probably didn’t. We all got kicked by the so called real world and realized that things are always harder than they seem. No strings attached is hardly ever something that actually exists in reality.

We all go through life in an attempt to achieve happiness. We all live in our own ways. We are all versions of our own experiences and perspectives. Due to our outlooks we change and adapt to things and those around us. We grow and change because of the relationships and events in our lives. We find happiness and lose it. We hope to find what we’re passionate about and make it more than just a small piece of us. Our memories are the stories that make a life personal. Our family are those that have surrounded us on the way. They are our history our origin. I may have repeated myself quite a bit, but if that is the case it is because I believe the repetition to be of importance.

I am who I choose to be, but I still believe that there is somewhat of a fate at hand. The energies of the world conspire to bring you who and what you need and also seem to shift your perspective. When you seem to lose your way it is because you were meant to. Struggle happens. Joy happens. We do things in life that we’ve never expected. We’ve become people in life we’ve never expected. We’ve endured things in life that we never expected. Expectations are a cruel trick that bring our hopes up or tear us down amidst the journey.

I started writing this piece about four years ago. I haven’t finished and I’ve started a few other projects. When thinking back to beginning this book I should have put more effort into finishing it. I expected to have this done before 2012. Well it’s now 2014 – yeah now it’s 2017- and its still not what I expected but it is what it is. My journey has shifted, my “self” has changed. My path deterred and my life is still not what I wanted it to be at this point. I never expected to be where I am and I’ve never expected to live out what I did. But sitting here and rereading what I’ve written gives me solace that at the point of my life that I was much more critical I was still that dreamer that saw the potential of what life can become.

Things never go as expected but they definitely continue onward. We have one chance at life and we all make mistakes along the way. The chapters of this pick at pieces of things that I have found that not only shape someone as a person but shape a life as I know it. The life I have lead is far from the course I thought I would take. Right now it is not more nor less; it just is. I am still seeking my happiness and I am still finding my passions. Life is a journey in progress and I intend on savoring my moments, stories, adventures and happiness. We all seem to lose our way at some point, but the point is to endure and move forward. Take what you can from what you’ve lived. Love who and what you can at any moment and find a way to be truly happy with the life you’ve made for yourself and the person you’ve become and have the potential to be. For nothing ever happens as expected and nothing ever will.