Shed Your Shell

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Things get a little dim sometimes; lost in transition.  You’ve got to take a moment every so often to get back what you hid in the shadows.  Spinning and spinning until fragments of yourself fall, giving way to what lies beneath.  Raw and vulnerable, without your shell, you have forgotten what it is to be guarded.  The walls you used to keep high have disappeared and you can’t even place when it happened.  You don’t even remember what it was like to be so withdrawn.

You had never known you could become so jaded.  You never knew that it could go away either.  But  you did, and it has.

The world around you is just as cold and dangerous as before, but you don’t care.  You see what is beautiful and you are basking in it.  It can’t hurt you anymore.  The lights are out, but you can see it all so much more clearly than before.  The limitless horizon is open before you.  Run into it.  Don’t bother to look back, it’s all behind you now and what is to come can only be better.  You weren’t supposed to stay behind if that’s not where you find yourself today.  Move forward, let it go.

Those thoughts you’re having – the anxiety, the pain, the fear, the self-consciousness – let them go.  You are who you are and that is all you need to be.  Let yourself go, give into yourself and move to the beat of your passions.  You won’t let anyone ever make you feel small again, you won’t even consider letting them.

The seriousness is all a joke, none of it really matters in the end.  All that matters is that you smiled, if even just to yourself.  A smile makes up for every bad thing in your day, every negative thought.  When they come up, just smile.  None of that matters, push it away with a smile and move on.  People have a very hard time moving on from these small, simple nuances during their days and over time, these things accumulate into a darkness that sits inside.  They put up walls and guard their hearts against the world so much so, that not even the good can get in anymore.  Where did you go?

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Rambling Nonsense on a Friday Night

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Sometimes it can feel like you are floating through life; the expectations that others have for you, weighing heavy on your thoughts.  You don’t know where you are going, and maybe only have a faint idea of where you would like to go but that isn’t good enough.  It’s not good enough for the hungry questions they keep asking you.  It’s not enough for the questioning and sometimes disappointed looks in their eyes.  According to them, you never made it and they feel responsible.  They feel responsible for some sick and selfish reason, that honestly has nothing to do with them.

Honesty aside, it possibly does have something to do with them.  If they weren’t always trying to steer you in the “right” direction and their expectations weren’t burning holes into you at night, then maybe you would have had a better idea of what YOU actually want.  Maybe, you might actually already be where you want to be (or maybe it would be easier to realize that you are there already).  It doesn’t matter if you have some big title, fancy house, and/or a wife and three kids.  No, it doesn’t matter if you have all your money organized, and put away into pretty little accounts, so you can go away on weekends.  It doesn’t matter if you fit into this nice little box of what it means to be an adult. None of that matters, unless it truly matters to YOU and you alone.

If you’re happy working odd jobs, travelling the world and living in your car…  being colourful or quiet or weird. If you dropped out of college because it just didn’t feel right… or if you never went at all, because you just couldn’t seem to fathom it, though everyone kept telling you that’s where you ought to be… If you’re happy with how you have chosen to move forward in life, then stop being unhappy because other people think that you should be.

Stop wasting time, waiting for the future that others have planned for you.  Go out there and just be you.  You don’t owe anyone a single thing.  There’s only one person you owe, and that person is yourself.  You owe yourself the motivation to do what is right for you, and the strength to stand by that.  You owe yourself kind words of support and optimism.  You owe yourself the chance to get off of the hamster wheel and to go to where you feel the most yourself.  You don’t really owe yourself much, but it’s worth a lifetime.

Birds, Bugs, and Boats

Alas, I have returned.  I guess it has been about seven months since I’ve posted anything really but it wasn’t just a break from my blog… I ended up taking a whole break from my entire life as some would … Continue reading

Coping With the Loss of Your Written Content

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As many people don’t know, I have been (finally!) working on a new blog post to announce my return to the digital world and talking about where I’ve been hiding these past months.  I was having a really rough time getting the words out and had only written about two hundred within the past four days.  However, today was the day that nearly a thousand of them flooded my screen.  Part I of my return post was complete.  At least for a few short moments it was.  You see, I had thought that I had saved my work when I went to go preview it.  It hadn’t saved properly.  I was in denial when I couldn’t scroll below the two hundred words… that’s when the anger hit and I screamed, nearly throwing my laptop before running out of the room in disbelief and horror.  This is not a normal response from me and I know there are a lot of people who would not fully understand how much of an impact this moment had.  However, I know that somewhere, there are people who totally get it.

It is amazing how much of a difference one second can make to your day and your life.  I had just been smiling with pride moments before, excited about how the format would look finally published.  Then I lost my mind and went to stand in the shower for a while before coming back to search for an article about coping with the loss of written work.  There is no such article that I could find.

I thought that an article like that was sure to exist.  How could it not?  Google is supposed to have all of the answers in’t it?  Actually no, it doesn’t and for the first time in my little life, Google let me down.  I felt so alone, staring at the screen, realizing that maybe it was just me, alone with a blinking text cursor rubbing my fate in my face.

I would like to note that I am still going to rewrite my return post as though this one had never been written and hopefully it can be anywhere near as good as the original… but until then, here are some steps for coping with the loss of your written (or other creative) work.

I. Walk Away and Get Some Air.

II. Do Something Else for a Few Minutes (Hopefully something that makes you feel good… like sex or eating).

III. There Is More Where That Came From.

IV. It Doesn’t Have to be Exactly the Same to be Great.

V. Forget About It and Start Over Fresh.

VI. Rome Wasn’t Built In a Day (And I’m sure they had struggles too).

VII. You Are Not Alone.

VIII. Try Working on a Different Piece and Then Go Back to It.

IX. It’s Not Your Fault (Accidents happen. That’s what life and learning are all about).

X. This Too, Shall Pass.

False Presumptions

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It takes more than a night to know somebody.  More than a kiss to know their true colours.  Who they are is but a whisper, clouded in by false pretenses and old habits.  How do you ever really know someone, and when is a good time to turn the other way?

Each one of us has a story, with parts that turn raw and gory.  And we are ashamed.  We should not be afraid of what lurks within our emotions or what makes us feel alive.  What is wrong with a little raw humanity and just doing something because you want to?  It doesn’t have to mean more than the simplest of things but it also doesn’t have to mean that we don’t care.  Who decides whether or not it should be complicated?

We live in a world where we are told that there are always strings attached.  We don’t want to owe anyone anything.

We live in a world where one misstep tells a person that you are just like all the rest.  We are afraid.

We are afraid of the things we want to trust, the things we wish we were brave enough to pull close.  We are laying alone at night, thinking of that person who we think should be the last thing on our minds.  We live in a world where we can’t tell that person anything that we are feeling because it is considered weak and desperate.

When will it be okay to be honest?  When will it be okay to just feel a little?

My Fear

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Fear is a large blanket, covered in many different scenarios.  Fear means many things to many people.  For me fear is the movement of six little legs, moving my way.  Fear is standing on the peak of my favourite mountain, looking down, and trying not to let the edge pull me off.  It is the affection of a lover from whom I have yet  to gain trust.  Fear comes to me in the form of a compliment I do not believe.  Fear is not knowing what is lurking in the shadows when I am alone in the eve’.  Fear is opening up my doors and dropping all of my walls with a very great chance of being burned.  I am afraid of moments like this, writing a post, where I fear I am unable to outdo my last one. Fear is that moment when my heart nearly stops in my chest and I don’t know what to do next to change the path of the situation.  Fear is the bane of my existence.  The thing that holds me back from all of the wild adventure in the unknown.  Fear for me is the word “no” when “yes” should be the only answer.

 

What is fear for you?

 

All pictures and words are my own.©

The Fear Inside

Fear resides inside of us.  The fear of “I’m not good enough” and “What will __ think?”.  These are the fears of the fully capables and the doubtfuls; the creatives, and the brains.  These are the fears of you and I, the fears of the girl in the craft aisle as she sets down the paints.  These are the fears of the man outside the music shop, looking in wistfully at the guitar inside.  These are the fears of the business man in the tattoo parlor, the cashier singing in the shower, and the boy down the road who’s hiding his paintings. Why is creativity so intimidating? Why do we believe that our creations should be the same as those of an artist we look up to? And why the hell isn’t my stuff as good as that writer over there?  Well that’s simply because we decided that for ourselves.

This fear we are constantly worrying about isn’t real.  Not even that fear of what someone will think of that wacky outfit that you love but don’t wear.  And no, not just the creative fears.  We live in a weird world where everyone is afraid.  We are afraid to dress, afraid to eat, afraid to dance, afraid to laugh, sing, speak, play, and simply be ourselves.  And who created this nonsense? No one but us of course.  I say this reign of nonsensical fear must end.

We must slip out from beneath our cloaks of doubt, and slip eager toes into the basin of possibility.  We must shout out our passion from the rooftops and run through the streets without a care.  We must forget about the thoughts of others and instead spend a lot more time in our own minds.  What is YOUR opinion?  What is YOUR passion? Who are YOU and who could YOU be?  I am not saying we shut our minds off to the ideas of others but we must not ever forget our own.

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The Reign of Technology

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Today I watched a video that really, deeply, bothered me.  It wasn’t a video on famine, pollution, or war.  It was simply a video on cellphones.  This video wasn’t about health risks, money, or new technological advances.  No, it wasn’t even a documentary.  This was a short film, without dialogue, that simply observed someone’s day in the generation in which we find ourselves now; the wireless generation.

This video didn’t over exaggerate; it wasn’t even bias.   It showed me something that we see everywhere each and every day.  However, it is different seeing it like this.  You may even realize, like  I did, that this is something you are guilty of.

Watching this video made me ache inside.  What I saw were people missing out on so much in their lives because they were too consumed by social media, text messages, phone calls, and even just capturing the moment they were in.  They were too consumed by these things to actually just enjoy the moment.

So much of our time and effort gets put into an invisible world we created called “the internet”.  We are so busy trying to share our lives that we miss them; they simply pass us by like clouds in the sky.  And this scares me.  This scares me more than I know how to say.

Technology is like an addiction of sorts.  You get a taste and only want more and more until it consumes your whole life.  And don’t get me wrong, technology has many great things to offer, especially when we don’t abuse it.  I think technology is great if we are using it for something, such as learning or creating; as long as it doesn’t get put before real life.  There is nothing more important or more worth your time than real life, with real people.

Abusing technology can come with many side effects but the one that bothers me most is that it destroys communication.  Technology brings people together the world over but now that is our most comfortable form of communication.  When was the last time you called someone up just to talk?  When was the last time you just drove over?  Now when was the last time you texted someone?  For me, technology has majorly impacted the way I communicate face to face, I have a terribly hard time with it and like to avoid it.

Finally, I have come to the conclusion that we are letting our gadgets run our lives rather than treat them like the tools that they are.  We are constantly glancing at our phones with holes in our hearts and stress on our faces.  We worry about what we may or may not have missed on Facebook, Twitter, YouTube, etc.  We don’t want to miss out.  And in not wanting to miss out, we have already missed so much.

If you would like to watch the video that influenced me to write this, click here.

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Why?

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Sometimes it’s really hard to not think about the question “why”.  It lingers in the dusty cupboard in the back room of all of our minds. Why?

Why am I here?  Why are you here? Why?  And there are no answers, only the whimsical theories of mysterious men.

Spirituality, I find, is often hard to comprehend.  Why is one spirituality deemed better over another?  Why is spirituality deemed wrong if it is not the same as our own? Why?

Why is my spirituality better?  Why is yours? Why?  And there are no answers, just the closed-minded theories of those unwilling to admit that they ask why too.

Everything is deemed destiny by few.  Some others do not agree.  Why would each of our lives have a purpose?  Why is it not just a big soup of nonsense?  And if it is, why does it exist? Why?

Why is my life important?  Why do you take part in it?  And there are no answers, just bangle-wearing women with foggy crystal balls and tarot cards.

And who really knows if there’s a god? Who really cares? And who really knows how far science can go? Who?

Maybe nothing I see is here and maybe there is no purpose. If that is so then why the need for survival?  Why the fight?  Why the passion, the fear, the dreams? Why the music and the screams?  Why do I run, and why do I seek, the answers to why, oh why, oh why?

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The Art of Giving Up

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Sometimes we give up

Assuming our goal is too high or too deep

We don’t take a second to step back and calculate

We just stop

Why do we do this?

What makes us give up on our dreams?

I used to like to think that I was banking them away for later; a good excuse for procrastination and/or giving up entirely.  It seems as though even when people are constantly giving up, they refuse to admit it, me being one of them.  Where does the motivation and passion go?  Could it have simply melted away into nothing?  Why do we constantly lie to ourselves about this loss?  And why in the hell am I still up at 4 am typing this damn text that is borderline stream-of-consciousness writing?  Maybe these thoughts are important for some reason or another but I can’t be sure where they came from or why it is that I must be writing them now.

What is important is that dreams are not something we should stash away in the drawer of tomorrow, they should be a gift that we open today.  We too often back down out of fear and insecurity when we should be rising up and taking hold.  It really isn’t as hard as it may seem.  I am beginning to realize that now, at least with the smaller things.  The larger things take just a little more work and dedication.  To persevere one must let go of doubt and let confidence pour in.  Now if I can just push myself a little further… if I can wade out just a little deeper… who knows where my river of dreams could take me?

Oh but giving up is easy

Maybe we would just rather lay around

Feeling too trapped for that bravery

We don’t like the risk of tangling our chains

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