Those dark days

I’ve been having more and more of those dark days. I’ve been spending more and more time alone. I’ve been spending more of my days off sleeping. I either have no appetite or I gorge. I’m just not in the best place.

That’s the thing with depression. It never really goes completely away so much as it lies dormant and re-emerges when you’re most vulnerable. I hate to admit it but the break up hit me hard. It was hard to lose not only a girlfriend of over a year but also a friend of 8 years. It sucked and still does suck. I know that the pain of losing my relationship is playing a big role in me sliding down into the pit.

I am proud of myself though. Years ago I would see myself sliding into the depression pit and do nothing to stop the downward spiral. Now I see the slide and I start taking measures to put the brakes on that downward spiral. I start focusing on self care and it’s that time again. I have 13 days off starting tomorrow. I am going to celebrate my birthday with my best friends. I’m going to write in my journal each day for the whole break so I can express my feelings. I am going to meditate like I used to. I’m going to jog by the river which I love. I’m going to go to SC to see my sisters and my over abundance of nieces and nephews. I’m going to do the things that I know lift my spirit. If I need to have a therapy session or two then I’ll do that as well. I am going to do whatever I need to do to limit the dark days. I have depression, depression does not have me.

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Are you bitter?

If you are honest with yourself are you angry or are you bitter? Are you holding on to something that hurt you? Are you holding on a situation that went wrong? Are you telling yourself you’re “just angry” or are you truly bitter?

There is nothing wrong with anger. Anger is a natural response to certain situations. However, holding on to this anger is where things go wrong. That anger slowly becomes bitterness. Bitterness destroys people. Bitterness causes you to take negative feelings associated with a prior situation and apply those feelings to every future related situation.  Bitterness causes you to expect the worst from others. Bitterness causes you to retreat inward. It is an ineffective coping mechanism. Anger is a feeling but bitterness is a state of mind. I have been able to use anger to push me forward. Anger made me feel like I had something to prove to the person that hurt me. Anger helped me get my BSN. Bitterness has never helped me get anywhere.

I have been able to use anger to push me forward. Anger made me feel like I had something to prove to the person/people/situation that hurt me. Anger helped me get my BSN. Anger pushed me to find a better job. Anger made me walk away from a dying relationship. Bitterness has never helped me get anywhere.

Bitterness kept me single for a long time. I had faith in no one. Bitterness kept me inside of a self-imposed prison. Why venture out when things are just going to go wrong anyway? Bitterness kept me emotionally unstable. Bitterness didn’t push me forward, it held me back.

Step away from bitterness. Be angry. Be hurt. Be sad. Feel all that you need to feel. There is absolutely nothing wrong with feeling all of those “negative” emotions. You have to learn to ultimately let those emotions go.

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

It’s settled

It’s settled.

I won’t be settling anymore.

For far too long I have been settling for “good enough” when it came to my life. Jobs, relationships, I have just been looking for good enough. I can’t do that anymore.

“Good enough” has not been good enough. It has kept me from growing, changing. It has kept me in a place that I should not be in. “Good enough” has not made me happy. It has made me settle for people that I should have never allowed into my life. “Good enough” has kept me from making the big move I want to make. “Good enough” has to go.

I cannot settle for less than what I am worth. I cannot settle for whats available. I deserve good things. I will get them.

The call

So "she" called to tell me she loves me.

She did not call to tell me she is sorry for not being a part of our household.

She did not call to tell me she is sorry for not showing any sexual interest in me while we were together.

She did not call to tell me she is sorry for expecting all and giving nothing in return.

She did not call to admit that she used me.

She called to tell me she loves me, because saying you love someone is apparently good enough.

The call did not go well.

Comfort

I need to learn to worry about my own comfort. Regardless of who I date, or who I am around, I tend to change myself to make my partner or friends comfortable. I need to stop doing that.

I am bisexual. I hid that for years because I didn’t want to make anyone else feel awkward. I am not really religious though I do believe in God. I also love collecting crystals and burning sage around my house. I hid that from anyone I dated because I didn’t want people to feel weird about it because they didn’t understand it. I have wanted my hair super short for years but didn’t cut it because my ex preferred me with hair or a weave. I wanted a nose ring but didn’t do it because my (ex) girlfriend didn’t like them. I have collected posters from going to Magfest three years in a row but didn’t put them up because I didn’t know how my partner would feel about anime/comic/gaming posters on the wall. I held off on the Sailor Moon tattoo I wanted because I didn’t know how to explain to other people why I would want permanent ink from an anime.

I spent a lot of time doing what I thought would make other people comfortable. I did not take the time to notice that no one really went out of their way to make me feel comfortable with all the odd things I liked. So I stopped giving a damn about other people’s comfort. My crystals and incense are out and on display in my living room. My posters are on my wall. My hair is as short as I want. My nose is now pierced. My sailor moon thigh sleeve has been started.

It’s my turn now. I don’t have to change for you, you have to accept me for who I am. Simple as that.

 

Starting from the bottom

People have this idea that they should just be at the top of any and everything they do, from the moment they start doing it. 

Stepping into the job market? Well, I want a six figure job with no training, in the most saturated field.

Starting college? I’m supposed to get into every Ivy League school I apply to with my 2.1 GPA.

Starting a blog? My first post should get 10,000 likes as soon as I post it. 

Starting a podcast? I should already be number one on iTunes with this first show.

Starting a vlog channel? I should already be a YouTube partner.

Starting a gaming stream? I should have 15,000 subscribers and companies beating down my door by the end of my first stream.

Starting a business? I should have $100,000 in revenue in the first month.

Starting a band? We should sell out Madison Square Garden for our first show.

What ever happened to “starting from the bottom”?

We have become a generation of instant gratification. Things are just supposed to happen.  There should be no work involved. Success is supposed to be instant. Right here, right now. 

How’s that working out? 

Life rarely works that way. Success takes effort. It takes work. It takes time. Typically it’s not going to happen overnight. What you want to accomplish will take time, dedication, and consistency. Consistency is the one thing people seem to gloss over. You can’t just put forth all your effort into one try and then walk away when you realize it’s going to continue to take work. 

Apply for the top notch job you want. Understand, however, that there is probably someone more qualified than you for the position. Step your game up and work to become the candidate they are looking for.

You’re not going to get your degree overnight. Having one good semester is not going to carry you for the whole two to four years. Your GPA is cumulative, that one 4.0 semester has gotten dragged down by your three 2.5 semesters. Work to bring your GPA back to where you want it EACH SEMESTER. 

Know that not one single person may read your first blog post. That’s ok. Continue to post anyway. Be consistent on when you plan to post. Look into how to boost your page views. Advertise your blog to social media. Build your base

Pick a topic you know you can talk about for your podcast and then post on a consistent basis. You will never get your podcast to be popular if you sporadically post or go long amounts of time between posts. If Thursday is your podcast day then be ready to podcast every Thursday!

Record your first vlog and understand that only one or two people may see it. Look at your vlogs and determine what you like and what you may want to work on. AND THEN ACTUALLY WORK ON IT. Continue to evolve and grow. Don’t look at your followers, your base isn’t there yet. Good content will slowly bring people in. 

Stream like no one is watching. In the beginning, there is probably no one actually watching. That’s ok. Do it anyway. Let your social media know when you’re going live. You’re bound to reach a few people. A good stream can bring them back, along with a few of their friends. It’s a start.

Go ahead and start that business. Be ready to be your own biggest supporter. Understand that a Facebook post talking about your business is not a feasible way to truly advertise your business. The world exists outside of Facebook and a lot of us don’t even have a Facebook page. Be prepared to get business cards. Be prepared to make flyers if that’s the route you want to go. Understand that getting your business out there is going to take time and yes, money. 

You all are talented? Great. Make music. Push that music. Play those tiny venues. Play the small summer concert series in the park. Have ways to direct people to your SoundCloud or YouTube page. Work for your fan base.

Work for it. That’s it. Be consistent in what you do and work for what you want. Success isn’t instant. It’s ok to not be a superstar in the beginning. You’re a superstar in the making. 

Surroundings

Your surroundings influence you more than you realize. The places you go, the people you choose to keep around you, it plays a part in your story. 

For a very long time I was going to the wrong places with the wrong people. For a while I can honestly say I was an alcoholic. I was a true alcoholic. I went out with the sole purpose of getting as drunk as I possibly could. I went to the same clubs with the same “friends”, making the same dumb decisions every weekend. I have been to work drunk. I have driven home sh*t faced. At that time I saw nothing wrong with it because the people I was around were just like me. They were drinking to get away from their emotions just like I was. It was normal. I was in school but didn’t really have a plan for my future. I was there because I was supposed to be. That was the only reason I went to college originally. Before my mother died she made it clear that she wanted me to continue my education, so I did just that. In school and just as lose as I wanted to be. I didn’t have anyone around me to help me focus. Add in an unhealthy and abusive relationship and that was life. 

I remember the moment I knew I was done with how I was living. I was about to graduate with my Associates in Science and my dad told me I could move to Virginia and live with him. As soon as he said it o started planning. I felt no connection to where I was. I didn’t feel sentimental. I didn’t even feel like I was going to miss anyone if I left. I simply made plans and drove six hours from South Carolina to Virginia. Done. 

That was the best decision I have made to date. Granted, I’ve made some dumb ass decisions while up here too, but I’m surrounded by people now that will call me on my sh*t. I have a small group of friends that keep me sane, keep me moving forward, keep me focused on doing what’s best for me. Instead of helping me self destruct my surroundings now help me grow. 

Change your surroundings, change your life.