Unhappiness is a familiar friend. It engulfs me. Remembering a happier version of myself feels like I’m trying to conjure up a dream I had once, but the details are fuzzy. Trying to be a happier me today is like walking against the wind in a hurricane. Every day is a struggle. Each step is just as tough as the one before. But it is worth the struggle. To make it past the breaking point. To find the sunshine through the storm. Following the north star’s dimly lit memory. Guiding myself through a black hole of disappointments and regrets. Returning to a happier me means remembering the bad times that brought me to present and re-writing the strongly worded narrative ingrained in my mind.
Sometimes opportunities seem to fall from the sky. The lucky ones are there to catch them. But most of the time, for any kind of lasting success, you need to be the one to take initiative and create opportunities for yourself. By working towards what you want to accomplish, you start going deeper into the thing, and opportunities will be able to make their way into the light for you. It might not happen right away, but don’t give up. If you can’t stop thinking about the thing, it is worth trying to attain it. Don’t give up too soon because what if your next break was around the corner?
Don’t go with the flow, decide to make waves. Going with the flow will take you to a place where someone else has guided you. If you decide to make waves towards a direction you choose, then the flow will follow you. A new flow will open up. New doors, new opportunities will reveal themself to you. Because as you work towards that which you desire, you have a way better chance of getting what you want.
Getting what you want means living life on your terms. Living life on your terms leads to happiness.
…is to do it.
We can think and think and ponder, but the only way anything will get done is… by doing it. People live their entire lives just thinking that they want a different life. They complain. They lament over what could have been. Well we can’t change the past but we could start making “what could have been” into a reality. The only way to do this is to put in the work. If you are waiting to quit your job, you’ll never start. Why would someone quit their cushy job to begin at point zero? You won’t. Your mind will tell you you’re crazy. Begin now and do the thing while you’re working. Do the thing while you’re still in school. Do the thing you always wanted to do. And just do it. Begin now. Don’t wait. Because if you aren’t doing it now, what makes you think you will start just because you quit your job and have more free time. I’ve done that and hey, I just had more time to watch TV.
There must be something in the air, because everywhere I turn I have people in my life riddled with problems. From family being scammed out of money, suffering from anxiety, losing jobs, losing money, losing their minds… My family is suffering big time right now. Just as my life is coming to a peak, everyone is in the valley. I was once in the trenches and have slowly climbed out. Trying to better myself and my mind has helped me walk the steep hill towards the sunlight. I know where I’ve come from and can picture where I am going. But it feels as though others in my life are stuck in a downward spiral.
I’ve realized you can’t help those who don’t want to help themself. I have to fight for my own sanity everyday, and worrying about others dampens my day. I’ve given countless words of wisdom, I’ve been an ear to hear their woes and a shoulder for them to lean on, but it is time I take myself out of the equation and become an observant outside. I need to be silent while they see their own light in front of them. The only way out, is through. And they haven’t even seen the tunnel yet.
Sometimes we want to help all those who are hurt at the expense of our own sanity and well being. But if we truly love ourselves, and others, we need to keep a safe distance from toxic people who don’t truly want to change. Otherwise, we will continue to suffer.
I was sitting, wondering if I should try to pursue being a lecturer at university again. Then I thought, what is it that I actually liked about teaching… was it the learning, the audience, the topics, the discussion, instructing… what was it? Did I have a passion for my subjects, not really. Did I enjoy them, yeah I did. But what I liked most was figuring out how to relate to my class. I liked finding ways to relate what we were learning to modern topics and give them real topics that they could share at parties and their friends. I liked making them laugh, I liked being witty, I liked the nuance of wording that I used, I liked the way I could control the vibe of the room with my presence. I then thought of people I looked up to, a lot of the people I thought of were comedians. I thought of people I was jealous of, like wow I wish I could do what they do every day. The most fun job in the world would be making people laugh every day. I love doing it already so if I could get paid to do it then that would be the best job in the world! Then I said, hmm…. I’ve seen friends do local standup comedy. If they can do it, so can I! So I did. And I am funny.
Some people are shocked but it isn’t shocking to me. I really thought about this and it fits me and my personality. I like commenting on social issues while also putting a humorous spin on it.
I lamented over what job I wanted, what did I want to do with my life, how could I find purpose, what business could I start. Well, for me, comedy has been a one stop shop to completing this checklist.
What is something you would want to do everyday? Start there, and maybe you will find your way. Works backwards by picturing the life you want.
I think one of the best ways to get out of a rut is to try new things. Recently I’ve started doing standup comedy. I’ve done it twice already this week and will be at two more open mics this week. It has become my new obsession. If you try something and don’t like it, don’t worry. But just make sure you distinguish between not liking something verses just not being good on your first try. It’s like riding a bike, you suck at first but then it gets easier as you keep practicing. Don’t let sucking the first go at something deter you from continuing on. Practice makes better!
You never know when trying something new might spark something deep within you, like it did with me. Try something new tomorrow and let me know how it goes 🙂
A lost love… Certain memories live on in our mind because we don’t want to lose them. We can actively try to keep these memories alive by reliving them over and over in our head. We replay the movie reel, we hear the words, go through the motions, embrace the feelings that we once felt so strongly. We don’t want to forget the way they smelled, the sound of their voice, their cadence, their presence. But the only way to truly get over someone is to distance yourself from those memories. Those memories are only glorified fragments, and once you parse out the truly good times from the truly bad times, you can then see things clearly with rational eyes. If this lost love is holding you back from living your life, don’t let the memory of a lost love become a permanent fixture in your mind. Do this by getting rational and shutting off that movie. Trust me, it is easier said than done.
Social media seems to propagate this appearance that everyone’s life is amazing, without faults, no hiccups, and that everyone had a smooth path to success. This couldn’t be further from the truth! Shows even lead us to believe that certain people just have this innate ability to be amazing at some skill or trade. These are just ideals, and not reality. Yes maybe the select few perhaps have special talents that enable success from the start. Yes we can all have a spark of potential even as beginners. Some may be more adept at certain skills. But, most experts did not start out as experts.
The fallacy that others are born as natural experts helps attribute to depression. We see others succeeding, we think it was effortless, we try the thing once, we suck, then we give up, then we feel like shit about ourselves. This leads to a cycle of misery in our life.
Please remember that no one is born an expert, it took them years to get to where they are. It took hard work, dedication, and sacrifice. If you don’t give up, you won’t ever lose.
Fear makes us feel inferior, it makes us feel like we can’t tackle any task. Fear freezes us in our tracks. Fear is the root of inaction. And inaction is the root of misery. So, fear leads to misery. If we let fear rule our lives we will be stuck, but we are not trees. We can move, go, do…
We can overcome fear by letting go of shame. We let go of shame by releasing the fear of judgement. We just do our thing and put it out into the world and try to minimize those doubts in the back of our head. Our fear hinders us, but only if we allow it to. If we never put ourselves out there, we might never know what we are capable of.