Sunday, September 7, 2014

let go and forget about the hate

I read Ashlyn's post about her summer and her coping mechanisms and it hit me that we've both had a trying time this summer. I came back from London emotionally and mentally exhausted, and the last few months have been one of if not the lowest times for me. Like Ash, this summer really made me sit back and contemplate on everything - I was thinking and feeling so much that it would get very overwhelming sometimes. This summer has been a rollercoaster and while I wouldn't change any thing at all (even the shittiest parts), I too, wanted to write about how I compensated for the negative energy.

Little Things for Happy

Learning Something New
I worked at a chain skate store for three years of my life and I didn't push once throughout my time at Zumiez. I hadn't stepped on a board for years until the beginning of this summer, and I definitely regret that choice. Learning how to longboard, or any of my hobbies at all ie learning how to read Tarot or picking my Canon up for the first time in ages, really got my mind off whatever I was feeling. It gave me motivation to go out and get better, opened up my circle of friends and points of interest, and challenged me to do something that wasn't laying in bed moping.

Taking Time To Do 'Nothing'
Despite not wanting to think about anything a majority of the time and constantly wanting to be busy, I took it upon myself to do something simple for as much as possible. The less 'free time' I had, the better. I went hiking more this summer and in the past few weeks have been taking drive-adventures by myself or with my friends more often than not. Sometimes it was just being in my own head with the wind coming through my car window that calmed me down.

Stop Looking Towards the Future
Before I moved to London, I had a very set future ahead of me. We never take in account what could happen to us in a month, tomorrow, or even in an hour. While I'm graduating in the Spring, I've slowly been breaking the habit of figuring out what my life will be like. It's the unknown, and stressing over something that can be affected by the littlest of things shouldn't be put priority over what we're doing in the present.

Finding People
There was one big thing I was terrified about when I moved back to New York, and that was my relationships with the people back home. I luckily found myself surrounded by some of the raddest people I know, and while they don't know it, they really helped me get into a positive mindset. While no one should rely on others for happiness, sometimes you just need the people who you care about the most to remember that life isn't so bad.

This is all relatively simple stuff I guess, but I never really sat back and thought to myself how I was able to get through the last couple of months. The last point especially is so personally important. I never outwardly thanked the people closest to me but every single one of them holds a special place in my heart.

Thank you for reading! xx

Thursday, September 4, 2014

reflections on my lost summer

I've had a really hard summer--emotionally, mentally, intellectually, physically... did I mention emotionally? I've never felt quite so lost and scared before. So, to compensate, I started doing more and more things to try to make myself happier, even if it was just for a little bit.

Five changes I've made to my life in the past few months that have made me happier:

5. Bath Time All the Time:
I'll admit that this change snuck up on me: about two weeks into my summer I suddenly realized I had switched to two baths a day. But honestly, why did I ever bother taking showers? They're boring. What's relaxing about standing up for another half an hour when you're already exhausted and ready for bed? Taking a bath quickly became my solution to everything this summer. Need to de-stress? Take a bath. This chapter is extra hard to understand? Take a bath. I'm crying again? Take a bath. Seriously, everybody just go take a bath.

4. Being More Curious:
I have a hundred different thoughts buzzing around my head every minute--is the moon out tonight? Is that a bat? There was an episode of the Office where a bat attacked Meredith. Do bats really attack people? Why is everyone afraid of bats? Those bats at the zoo looked really sad. Why do people put bats is such small cages? What's on NASA's radio station right now? I should probably work out. Wait, I need to google bats. I finally started giving in, and I've started learning one new thing every day. It may not be as useful as devoting yourself to studying one craft intensely, but nothing says interesting like someone who knows 500 random facts. I hope.

3. More Buddhist Principles:
I've always been fascinated by Asian religions, and I've often wished I were a Hindu or Buddhist. However, I do enjoy a hamburger every once in awhile... So I never thought I could pick one up. I was googling Buddhism and meat eating one day and came across a Buddhist who said following rules from a book because they're rules isn't a good goal; the goal should be aware of the harm you cause in the world and minimize it. Ever since then, I've been carrying bugs back outside and trying my best not to scream whenever I see a small furry creature. I think I've really gained a greater appreciation for other living creatures over the past six months, and I want to keep expanding on it. I even have a really crazy lucid run in with a mouse where I'm pretty sure we had some kind of universal break through and time stood still but that's a story for my memoirs

2. No More Scales:
For as long as I can remember, I've been a numbers girl, so I have a tendency to get hung up on arbitrary fluctuating numbers that dictate my life far too much. I've developed a much healthier relationship with my body over time, but I would be lying if I said I didn't worry about the food I eat or how many days I've gone without working out. I finally decided this summer that I was tired of the roller coaster ride that accompanied frequent weigh-ins. I'm trying to be kinder to myself. Less numbers. More happiness.

1. Accepting All is Not Lost:
After I fulfilled the dream I had for 15 years, I felt really lost. I felt like I had nothing left, which sounds overly dramatic--but for someone who always has a plan, I felt awful not knowing what I was working toward. All of my friends kept telling me I would find a new dream like Rapunzel, and I believed that too. For awhile. But after a year of still no new dream I wasn't sure I would ever have one again. I didn't know what was wrong with me. One night I realized the reason why I can't find a new dream is because I'm still hung up on my last one. I worked for my dream company, but I didn't get my dream job. It was a huge cathartic relief to me to realize that the reason I can't move on is because I never really accomplished my dream. Maybe I never will, but I feel like I finally have something to work toward again. I think my subconscious has known all of this for a long time; maybe that's what has kept me going.

Stay happy,