There has been a lot of changes in my personal life lately. In jobs, in relationships, in my mind, and most importantly in my outlook on life. If I said it’s been an easy year that’d be a lie… it’s been some of the most trying times for me even if I don’t show it to anyone. But it’s certainly been a year of growth and realization about life. Sometimes I wonder if I’m losing myself when I think I am finding myself. I know that I am choosing to make the changes because it’s making me a happier person, but then I often wonder if I’m losing my values of who I am while doing so. My friends remind me then that I definitely feel happier.. I just still care too damn much about what others think because I don’t want to let down other people down along my way.
I recently talked to one of my best friends that I’ve known for 18 years about everything. She has always been one of those people that is nice to everyone and nobody could ever say a bad word about her… kind, full of faith, always happy. But even she has gone through struggles and made decisions that most wouldn’t “expect of her”. But who is so powerful that gets to say what is expected of her? Or what’s expected of me? Or what’s expected of you? Humans often care so much about what others will think, about being judged, about being liked, about letting others down.. when we really we just need to make our own choices each day based on if they make us happy at that moment. As I was telling my friend about my recent life, she said something along the lines of:
“We are all just cruising on this crazy ride of life. It’s such a good feeling knowing that we don’t have to plan the rest of our life, but that we can take every moment and every day as it is. If something brings joy to your heart, enjoy it… it’s probably not as crazy as you think. We all have some wild crazy situations or secrets that we feel like nobody would understand. You are not alone. But, it feels good to get to the point in life where you just don’t even care if anyone gets it, understands, or judges your choices.. as long as it makes you happy.” — (isn’t she the best?!)
Anyway, I think I am almost at that point where I don’t care if others understand my decisions.. as long as those decisions are making me happy right now. I’m not completely there, because I certainly still overthink just about everything and don’t like to let people down… but I certainly am a hell of a lot closer to that point than I used to be.
As I get older, I’ve also learned that not everything in your life needs to be publicized to everyone you know (I know I know, I’m kind of counteracting that by writing this blog, but also not really at all because I’m not writing specific details about my life.. and I’m not looking for help, I’m looking to help YOU). I’m talking about like every time you’re upset making a dramatic quote post on social media about it or writing a paragraph online about your troubles for sympathy, or talking so much shit about someone who is making you upset… what are you getting out of doing those things other than negative attention and not actually dealing with what’s making you upset? How are those childish things making you a happier person? Newsflash: They’re not.
Instead of seeking sympathy from negativity in your life or getting angry at others when you’re upset, learn how to appropriately respond to negative siutations. I am NOT much of a book reader, I’ve been too fucking A.D.D, to read books my whole life… I’ll start one and then never finish it… but I recently read a book for the SECOND time because I liked it so much called “People Can’t Drive You Crazy Unless You Give Them The Keys”…you should definitely read it. The whole message in the book was how you only have control over your own attitudes, actions, and reactions. When a negative situation, person, thing, or circumstance is present in your life only YOU can choose how to respond to it. (Think I mentioned that in a previous blog….) But it says you can’t control your immediate emotion, which is an automatic reaction to the circumstances that happen to you (sadness/anger, etc), but your response is how you choose to act on that emotion. You can may not be able to control the reaction, but you definitely can control the response. Respond productively……
Personally, as of lately, nothing motivates me more than my negative moods. My frustration, fears, and sadness genuinely fuel my fire to be better. I feel the last month I kind of have been in a rut since I haven’t traveled and my life has changed so much. This weekend specifically was tough for me for many reasons, but it really made me refocus on my personal goals & I got so much shit done. Sure I cry like a pathetic little girl at times, its healthy to let it out. But I’m also trying to teach myself nothing will come from prolonged moping either. It’s all about how I respond to my problems.. to not give as much of a damn as I do. My suffering always sucks, but then it inspires change in me. So I hope you learn that too. After all, problems are a constant part of life. One you solve one, another one will arise. If you let them affect you day in and day out, you’ll spend your entire life (and only life) miserable.
If you can’t seem to get yourself out of your funk… whether its boredom, depression, anger, or any so-called “negative” emotion (it’s ok to feel those things so I don’t like using the word negative).. anyway, start with making a list of things you want to do. Things you’ve been wanting to get done. Things you’ve been wanting to do but been putting off. Things you’ve been wanting to buy.. or goals you always talk about but never act on. Then get yourself up and focus on getting them done. One step at a time. Things as simple as vacuuming those fries out from under your car seat that you’ve seen sitting there for the last month to reorganizing your closet to purchasing that item you’ve been wanting (I just bought a mattress for my car that I’ve been wanting for so long! ♥ weeeeeeee so excited, road trip anyone?!) to having that conversation with someone that you’ve been wanting to have (just did that too.. as proof I’m practicing what I’m preaching). Use the tough times in your life as motivation to restart something positive for yourself.
That’s where I’m focusing my life right now. Using the tough changes in my life as kind of a restart button. Learning to not let others opinions control my choices and to use difficult situations as motivational tools. Learning to “not give a fuck” about things that don’t matter and to “give all my fucks” to things that make me feel good.. like chicken nuggets and traveling 😉 (Also a good book- “The Subtle Art of Not Giving A Fuck” by Mark Manson- even for nonreaders like me, I was laughing out loud).
So my point is: stop caring so damn much about every little thing that changes or goes wrong in life.. peoples opinions can suck but they will get over things eventually and shit happens but difficult situations are just a constant part of life. You’ll be happier if you do.
Thank you for sharing. You verbalized what I felt probably 35 years ago. Reading Norman Vincent Peale’s books on the Power of Positive thinking helped me at that time. Positive thinking and not worrying what others think can still be difficult to this day but I do my best to roll with things. You are so right when you say it’s how you choose to react that will get you where you want to be. A friend of mine used to say “it’s mind over matter, if you don’t mind it doesn’t matter”. Simplistic but factual.
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What a great open heart post! I love your blog! Many,many blessings on your path :)!