Yesterday, I spoke about the growing pains that I’ve experienced in the last year. Below is the list of the steps that I took. They may or may not work for you. They were perfect for me. Here they go:
- Social Media: I got off Facebook & I got on Twitter. When you’re searching for answers, the last thing you need to have is a “grass is greener” mindset. Facebook is an overwhelming medium because everyone markets themselves as having the perfect life. I was lost and fragile, which made me prone to making comparisons. I needed to generate my own content and form my own ideas of what was missing in my life. I needed a blank slate and Facebook wasn’t helping. I also felt that I needed to be less accessible. Once I figured it out, I fell in love with Twitter. The amount I was reading and the quality of the content I was consuming doubled. To me, Facebook was about people and Twitter was about ideas. I needed more ideas. The people I cared about knew where to find me.
- List of 50 Things to Do This Year: I made a list of all the things that made me feel weird, insecure, and bored. I added those to a list of things that I had been putting off. The combination of the two created a balance for me. I am no longer searching for this perfectly thrilling life. I’ve come to understand that life can be simple and boring, but even boring has it’s beauty. Now, when I have a normal “blah” day, I savor it. Besides, I never know when the next wave is going to hit. So, I rest up on those boring days now, which prepare me for the unexpected roller coaster.
- Passion: Every single time that someone told me a business idea or plan, I offered to help. This resulted in me getting involved in a great deal of projects. Slowly, I started placing myself in different environments. I began to get comfortable with feeling lost; with so many new projects, it became inevitable. The desire to want to be great at everything faded. I decided to be curious, not great. The curiosity I exercised spilled over to other areas of my life. Learning became my priority. I know that as long as I keep asking questions, I will find my way. In writing, photography, and in event coordinating I merely braced myself and jumped in. I discovered things I was great at and I let go of the things that I wasn’t. I had enough on my plate to remove the things I was bad at without feeling like a failure. I have learned more in the last year than I think I had in the four before it. I was made to create and I know this now.
- Date Yourself: I was heartbroken, it’s true, but I attempted to make amends with the idea of love. I started really asking myself the important questions like, “How do I feel?” I asked myself questions the same way you would ask a partner how their day went. Surprisingly, as I sat there like an idiot telling myself how my day had gone, I would get answers that I hadn’t expected. When I gave myself a chance to open up, I was surprised by what I was willing to admit. I was amazed by the things lurking around inside. One time, I remember I was at a clothing store and I saw this really expensive dress. I tried it on and after feeling like a princess, I made my way to put it back. As I hung it, I thought for a brief moment what I would do with it if it were a gift for someone I was dating. I would have swiped my credit card in a heartbeat. It suddenly dawned on me that I would do something for a significant other that I wouldn’t do for myself. That’s when I grabbed the damn dress and headed straight to the cashier. That was the day that I truly won myself over.
- Break the Mold: I had a very fixed idea of who I was. I think that I had stuck with it for as long as I did because it was something people had expected from me, so, naturally, I just went with it. I stopped that. I stopped limiting myself to the people, scenarios, and ideas that I thought seemed like a perfect fit. When someone would invite me somewhere and my little red flag would go off, I would say, “Yes, I’m in.” I remember feeling anxious the minute I said it but I reminded myself that it was not life or death. It was just a stupid plan. It’s safe to say that 80% of the “stupid plans” that I attended were A BLAST. The boys I flirted with were wild cards, the groups I dined with had once intimidated me, and the plans that I attended were the ones I used to flakey with. I ripped open the box I had placed myself in. Now, when people look at me with surprise, I get confused. I often forget that I’ve changed. I make it a point to surprise myself now, never in an unhealthy way, of course, but I make the effort to avoid labeling myself. I try to stick to “why not?” instead of “why?” I am not this or that. Today, I’m one thing and tomorrow, I’ll be another.
- Spirit: I have a strong spirit that is rowdy and needs attention. I have begun to tap into it through prayer, exercise, and writing. This is the trickiest of them all because the deeper something runs, the more unique the method of access. I needed silence. I needed something to calm the anxiety in my life and the negative thoughts that circled my mind. I have found a great deal of self-acceptance in pursing spiritual growth. What saved me was the discovery that just wanting it was enough. I stopped feeling bad about not being a fanatic. I just appreciated that I was open and curious. In the end, that’s all it is about. In the end, it was about getting on my knees, whether it’s for yoga or my god and being humble enough to understand that there is clarity in the silence. I needed to understand that my mind’s voice was not always right. The brain’s main function is to solve problems. When the brain has nothing to do, it will create a problem with the material it has so that it has something to do. I needed to stop believing every little squeal that went off. In time, the rambling died down. It will never go away but at least I don’t believe it the way that I used to.
I have allowed myself to experience a great deal of growth over the last few months. I allowed the growth because I was open, and honestly, I was desperate. The thing about it is that as I stood around and marveled at each flare that was going off in my life, I realized there was only one thing that I could trace it all back to… it was me. I feel like I did in high school. I feel like this starry eyed kid that wants to conquer the world. That’s who I want to be. That’s the only label I want.
I hope you find your way. I hope you find the you that you’re looking for.
Your curly haired dreamer,