WHY AM I SUCH A TERRIBLE PERSON? I hate that this blog sometimes gets away from me, but it just does.
I also hate that I tend to write a new blog post whenever I need to make myself feel better. It’s like I only feel really pressed to write publicly when I need to self-reflect and pick myself up. However, it’s necessary because I think what I have to share today will help pick other people up too who need it. Writing is my therapy, but if I can put myself out there while helping someone else, then that makes it even more worth it to write when I’m blue.
A dear friend of mine (who happens to live 4,000 miles away) gives me some of the best advice, so this post is actually dedicated to you, Monika. Thanks for taking the time to ask how I’m doing, to encourage me, and to tell me what to do to feel better about myself. Europeans just GET IT. AmIright?
Anyway, it’s times like these that you need to sit down and really think about all that you’ve done. The last time I spoke with Monika, she told me whenever she feels stuck or down on herself, she gets out a piece of paper and pen and writes down everything she’s accomplished. It’ll give you perspective on how far you’ve come from where you’ve started, and all the hurdles you’ve achieved will make you feel proud about where you are in the now, even if your situation isn’t ideal. Make yourself proud of yourself. You deserve to because no one else is going to give you that praise.
It turns out, my list is long. I’ve done way more than I thought I have, and it feels awesome to see it directly in front of my face. I highly suggest you make yours. You'll feel better right away.
And here’s another thing.... (Warning: This is where it gets dicey.)
People are going to be mean. They’re going to judge. Unfortunately, it’s just how life works. If people see you as an easy target, they’ll jump on the opportunity to bash whatever it is they can find to bring you down. To harsh your mellow, if you will.
I know I’m an easy target. I’ve never been outspoken or strong-willed. I’m known to be a push-over. I also live with my parents and I’m not doing as well as I should financially, although I don’t really see it that way. Success doesn’t happen overnight. Success also doesn’t mean dollar signs. I’m taking the steps I need to take and I’m excited for where I’m going, even if it’s taking me longer than most. People have a lot they can make fun of me for. Fine.
With all that being said, I’m also quite vulnerable at this awkward stage in my life. I take care of my ailing, 91-year-old yia yia who has completely lost her mind as her body slowly shuts down simultaneously from renal failure. This might not seem like something deemed as “difficult,” but that’s because some people are so selfish and self-centered that they don’t understand the first thing about taking absolute care of someone who has completely lost their independence. It’s a shit ton of work, and it really takes a toll on you. You wouldn’t understand unless you’ve been through it.
I’ve talked before about how uncomfortable your mid-twenties are, or at least, they have been for me, and how I shouldn’t be so hard on myself. I’m in the right place at the right time. Still, we're all human, and I have my slumps when I feel inferior, vulnerable, inadequate, and essentially, like a loser, especially when I hear about people judging me…
“Her life seems so easy.”
“I wish I could go to all those concerts.”
“It must be sooo hard having fun all the time.”
“I feel like you’re always going somewhere, must be nice. *eye roll*”
To all these Debbie Downers and Critical Carls, let me tell you something. I’m twenty-freakin-four. It’s 2015 in America, and Social Security will be nonexistent by the time we’re old. I’m going to be working until I’m dead, so here’s my defense:
I find it ridiculous I have to defend what I do in MY life to anyone to begin with.
I’m making sure that whatever “work” I do won’t feel like “work” because it’s what I enjoy doing. I refuse to settle for a j-o-b that isn’t rewarding to me. I work for a start-up media company, and it’s challenging, but I absolutely love it because it’s EXACTLY what I want to turn into my career.
I’ll do whatever I want to do because I can. I'm a fan of the idea of (responsible) reverse retirement: doing fun things now while you’re young and able before establishing a full time career, having a family, settling down, and, as mentioned before, working until we’re dead. It’s why I went to Thailand, it’s why I’m exploring the US, and it’s why I go to shows. (Live music is my escape for any and all stress factors in life, so that’s why it’s frequent. Some smoke, some drink, I jam. K?!) What I do is NONE of your business. I'm paying my taxes, aren't I?
I do fun things responsibly. I plan ahead. Everything you “see” me do on Facebook is no surprise to me. I plan that ish out, work hard in the meantime, and then grant myself those breaks. Work hard to play hard. I'm a Libra; I NEED balance. I live three hours away from my boyfriend and all my friends, so yeah, I’m going to go see them when I can, and I’m going to make the time I have with them worth it before I come back into full-time-dementia-and-startup-land. Ever consider that? Probably not. When I come back, you're damn right I'm busting my butt. You just don't see that part.
SO LAY. OFF. Social media is so misleading because people, including myself, only post the good stuff. You don’t see what goes on behind closed doors. No one knows what my life, or anyone else's, is like off the Internet. So worry about yourself because you really know nothing.
Still, I get hurt hearing things people say about me behind my back and to my face. That’s okay. It happens, and as hard as it is for me to do personally, you have to let it roll. Silence the haters because honestly, they’re jealous, and misery lurrvvvs company. Don’t stoop to that. Rise above, keep your head held high, and keep doing whatever you want to do. It’s YOUR life; don’t let someone make you self-conscious for living it.
I kind of just word-vomited a lot here, so overall, walk away with these:
Take time to remind yourself of how great and accomplished you are. Make a tangible list, read it, and pat yourself on the back. Then, treat yo’self.
DON’T YOU DARE feel guilty about wanting to go play every now and then. I think people forget about the concept of recess. It makes all the difference. It's why it's in the curriculum. There's power in play.
People are going to talk and it’s going to hurt. Plain and simple.
No matter what, don’t let that negativity bring you down. You can be sensitive for a little bit, I’ll allow that, but then let it go.
Keep doing you. You get this one life, so do what you will with it because it’s YOURS.