Sometimes

Sometimes I really wish I could have a mentor. And yes, if you are thinking of a wise Buddhist middle-aged man, that’s exactly who I’m thinking of too.

On a serious note, it wouldn’t really matter what form my mentor would appear in. All I need is a wise individual who knows how to keep secrets. I would tell them all about my life, my goals, my problems, and they would use all of their wisdom and experience to help me do amazing things. Someone who would keep me motivated no matter what, tell me that everything will be okay and remind me to get my shit together when necessary. Someone who would remind me about all my responsibilities, but in a way that would be encouraging and not stressful at all. Someone who has been a mentor for months, and years and decades prior to meeting me, and would already know everything there is to know about helping people to focus on what they want and what they need to fix.

I know it seems fantastical, yet a person can dream. Think about it. Wouldn’t you prefer to have someone like that in your life? We’re all encouraged to be our own mentors, yet it gets so tedious that we start to go easy on ourselves in the most detrimental way possible. And when we do get our shit together, so to speak, we find ourselves in a bubble of stress and last-minute panic. I don’t know what the moral of this post is, but I’ll probably finalize it on the following note: if you are not lucky enough to have a mentor, try to be your own mentor (I guess). Imagine that you are two people instead of one, and encourage yourself as you would have liked to be encouraged by somebody else.

Damn it, can I at least have a mentor until 2018?

meditation-2214532_640

Advertisements

Autumn Blur

Autumn is a very hazy time. Leaves fall, nature dies, and everything just seems to die with it. And yet, no matter how tired/sad/moody/indifferent I find myself feeling every autumn, it is definitely one of my favourite seasons.

I’m the type of person who weirdly enjoys feeling melancholic. When you are sad, you have the opportunity to rethink things, re-evaluate goals and gain a better understanding of who you are. Happiness, on the other hand, is like a professional camera with the brightness turned all the way up – in focus, yet unpleasantly blinding. Sounds pretty deep, but I did warn you that this season turns me into a weird existential mess. It’s not like I lie in bed all day: I still have university, with all its endless group projects and exams and assignments; I still have a part-time job; I still try to get my ass to the gym more or less regularly – as well as out, just to ensure that I still have a (more-or-less) good social life. Yet everything becomes blurred, sleepy, weird – unreal.

Time loses its grip during autumn. The days just seem to gradually grow from one to the next, without any particular feeling of what date it is, or even what hour of the day. In fact, I am almost convinced that Lewis Carroll wrote “Alice in Wonderland” based on how many experience the months of September, October and November – you have a vague idea of who you are, yet nothing around you seems to make sense.

landscape-1042468_640

RANT: The Las Vegas Shooting and Identity Politics

Excuse me if this post is triggering in any way – you are free to leave at any given moment. In fact, just as free as I am to express my opinion, so you won’t find me apologizing for speaking my truth. Let me begin by saying that I am in no way dismissive of racism and discrimination. Yes, these two concepts still exist, and some people can definitely be labelled as racist. Just like some people can be labelled sexist, homophobic, prejudiced, perverted, completely psychopathic and so on. It is no secret that our beautiful planet is also home to both bad ideas and bad people, but to constantly focus on them is absolutely destructive for society as a whole.

As many of you may be aware, a horrible massacre took place on the first of this month at the Las Vegas Village. A 64-year-old male opened fire at the Mandalay Bay hotel during an outdoor concert, managing to shoot 58 people from his hotel apartment and injure over 500. ISIS immediately “took credit” for this shooting, but it was later discovered that the shooter is highly unlikely to be associated with the extremist organization for the following reasons:

  • He was not practicing any religion
  • No association was found between the shooter and Islamic beliefs
  • He committed suicide immediately after the massacre, which goes against Islamic beliefs

Due to this, the attacker – who was initially labelled as a terrorist – is now being referred to as a “lone wolf”, with his motives still in question. Although many people have expressed their condolences, and concentrated on what actually matters, several others have taken it upon themselves to discuss the attacker’s race.

So, to the people who are whining about privilege, let’s examine your priorities. Is this a chance to talk about gun violence? Nah, we’re good. What about the NRA? It’s fine. Maybe better mental health monitoring? Well, America is working on that. How about better security checks? Yeah, maybe, whatever. So, what is left…discussing white privilege? YES OF COURSE THAT IS IMPORTANT, THE ATTACKER WAS WHITE! If he wasn’t white, there would be outrage. If he wasn’t white, he would never be labelled as a “lone wolf”. If he wasn’t white, a whole race would be attacked right now (which is totally not what is being done right now, it’s not like white people are being constantly targeted for their privilege).

To all the people who are using this tragedy to push your propaganda on the subject of white privilege, social justice and racial discrimination – your motives are disgusting. No, I am not denying that white people were slave owners a hundred years ago, or had more privilege in the past. Just like Egyptians would carry out the most appalling sacrifices in the past. Just like the Ottomans (i.e. Turks) would slaughter any nation that stood in their way in the past. Just like Germans, led by the Nazi party, supported the killing of six million Jews in the past. Just like people in Africa sold each other into slavery in the past. But, for some reason, white people (especially white Americans) are being constantly targeted for their privilege, which is determined by the colour of their skin.

Racism is based on targeting people for their RACE. The statement “reverse racism is not a thing” lacks any kind of logic, since the ability to be racist or not isn’t determined by the race of the RACIST. So next time you try to utilize a tragedy and turn it into a socio-cultural debate where you slam white people for their privilege, think twice.

gun-1678989_640

Non-coincidental Coincidences

If you’ve been following my blog, you may have come across my recent, rather lengthy post about the law of attraction (and if you haven’t, that can be easily corrected…hint). In that entry, it is mentioned how I recently “rediscovered” this law and decided to use it to my advantage – and with some results, for that matter. In spite of the fact that I’ve already experienced a bit of success with this mindset, not enough time has passed for me to give an honest account of exactly how effective it is; let’s just say that it seems to be working and I promise to elaborate later in September. Although I’m not going to go deep into “The Secret” just yet, I would like to give a somewhat peculiar account of what happened yesterday. But before we go any further, it’s best to give another back-story.

Ever since I can remember, there have been times where I would think about someone, or simply remember someone, and then suddenly bump into them shortly after. After initially assuming that these were simply coincidences, a trace of doubt began to set in when I realized that these were not people I saw or even thought about often (literally months would pass before I saw or even remembered these individuals). Sometimes, all it took was one vivid memory for me to bump into a certain individual later during the day, even if I hadn’t seen or spoken to them for ages.

Although this started happening more and more frequently, my mind continued to ignore law of attraction as a possible explanation. Maybe it was due to lack of belief, or simply the fact that the concept was stored somewhere in the back of my mind next to long division and embarrassing memories (i.e. intentionally forgotten things). Either way, I acknowledged the weirdness of these occurrences, but didn’t think into them too much. However, yesterday was different.

Last night, my friend and I were walking home from a concert, just talking about stuff. Yes, we were literally just discussing “life stuff” – remembering high-school, getting nostalgic over our teenager years and discussing old friends/boyfriends/almost-boyfriends and so on (and I know she reads by blog so I’m going to insert a small “hi” right here). You know, just normal gossip – nothing out of the ordinary.

However, what did end up being unusual was the fact that I literally saw some of the people we spoke about several minutes after mentioning them. Once again, I hadn’t actually seen these people in months, which made me think about how weird these coincidences were becoming. Only this time, instead of briefly freaking out, I began to consider that these might not be coincidences after all.

Now, let’s get back to the initial topic. According to the law of attraction, our thoughts and feelings have the ability to attract people/things into our lives. Likewise, we also have the ability to attract success with positivity or scare it away with negativity – something that I explained in more detail in my last post. Anyway, the point is that simply thinking about someone can cause you to randomly bump into them, especially if they are somewhere nearby. It’s almost as if the universe aligns itself in such a way that you end up in the same place (at the same time) as the person you remembered. Although either of you could have essentially chosen different routes, or taken slightly longer to get to that exact spot, that person becomes somewhat drawn to you via your thoughts alone. Literally magnetic.

End-note: I’m not claiming this to be a completely valid explanation, but remain pretty open to the idea of non-coincidental coincidences, which sounds mutually exclusive but strangely believable at the same time.

street-690621_640

The “Law of Attraction” in the Eyes of a Skeptic

The law of attraction – a peculiar premise that our thoughts have the power to attract positive or negative circumstances into our lives. Positive thinking sends off positive vibrations, attracting one’s desires, whilst negative thoughts attract more negativity. It’s all about the good vibes, bro.

Although I first watched “The Secret” in 9th grade math class (and remained vaguely impressed for a whole 24 hours until my 14 year old brain got distracted by food or some friendship group drama), I never really thought into the Law of Attraction up until now. Just as atheists reject prayer until the first airplane turbulence, or naive college girls continue to take nudes until the first phone hack, I remained pretty ignorant of this concept up until now. In other words, I didn’t consider utilizing this peculiar idea until it became absolutely necessary.

Before I continue, let me introduce a bit of a back story. Sadly, I’ve never been a particularly positive person, or a raging optimist, which means that I’ve always had a bit of a hard time dealing with problems – both emotionally and physically. However, I didn’t actively pursue change for several reasons:

  1. I didn’t experience any serious, long-term issues/discomfort that would require significant emotional and physical effort to deal with (oh, the good days…)
  2. I considered my often skeptical and somewhat pessimistic outlook to be a part of my personality – i.e. “I am who I am…yo”
  3. I’ve always been a bit lazy, to be perfectly real with you

Nonetheless, my life began to take a (wrong…WRONG!) turn back in 2015, meaning that two years later I found myself facing a multitude of different problems; it wasn’t a single floppy flower anymore, it was a whole bouquet of awful. As one trouble multiplied into several, my stress and anxiety levels also became much more…multiplied? Fast forward to summer 2017, I found myself weighed down with several issues – from health, to personal, to financial, to even existential (hello sly blog reference).

Following on, I decided I was pretty much done. It may sound cliché, but it honestly felt as though time had froze and nothing made sense anymore. I kept thinking to myself all over again that, after all these problems, “am I REALLY going to have to go through more problems?” It got to the point where I just decided that I was either hopelessly unlucky or cursed (or both). Why did everything keep going wrong? It almost seemed supernatural for a second, but then I remembered that I don’t do creepy.

So, after several days of wallowing in my own misery, I decided to do a bit of internet research as to why everything seems to be going wrong in spite of countless physical efforts. And you know what explanation kept popping up? That’s right, the good old “negative thinking”. As far as I can see, there are actually two types of negative thinking, with the first being very straightforward – “my life sucks, nothing ever goes right for me, nothing is going to get better”. In spite of the fact that I’m not the world’s biggest optimist, I don’t actually think like that on most occasions. However, I, alongside the majority of the world’s population, practice negative thinking in relation to certain problems.

For example, I have some health issues that don’t seem to be going away, and every time something comes up, my thoughts begin to drift into the direction of “damn, if these conditions haven’t gone away by now, they never will” or “I’m so tired of feeling sick”. Another example would be financial struggles – “oh man, this part-time job doesn’t suit my schedule, looks like I won’t be able to find a job that suits my schedule at all” or “my current freelancing job isn’t bringing in any money, I guess it will never be profitable again”. I can go on for ages, but it would be a waste of time – I think you already got the picture.

This is where the law of attraction comes in. After stumbling upon this concept once again, I decided to actually look into it a bit more extensively. I may not be an expert, but as far as I understand, our thoughts also emit vibrations. If we keep thinking negatively, we will attract more negativity into our lives; our health will deteriorate, we will remain broke and our personal lives will continue to go downhill. Negative thinking is understandable – not many people can remain hopeful when everything is pretty much crap. However, as we continue to respond negatively to our current circumstances, we continue to attract more negativity into our worlds, trapping ourselves in this cycle of never-ending problems.

The law of attraction suggests that, instead of thinking and responding negatively, we should practice positive thinking. But this is not the irritating type of positive thinking where your grandma sits you down and says “hey, just be happy you’re not a starving child in Africa” (yes I’m aware of that, but thinking that isn’t going to solve all of MY problems Grandma let’s just drink tea and watch the news instead ok how about that). No, this positive thinking consists of several strategies:

  1. Reminding yourself of what you want throughout the day – “I want to be healthy”, “I want to be wealthy”, “I want to attract good people into my life” etc
  2. Picturing that you already have all of this, and understanding it’s only a matter of time before you can experience and enjoy it (not only should you picture it, but you should also be certain of it)
  3. Believing that your current state is temporary and things will get better, as well as being grateful for what you already have

Nonetheless, you can’t just sit around and wait for things to happen – you should carefully determine all of the steps you need to take to achieve your desired life. Supposedly, the trick here is that sending out positive vibrations and “asking the universe to give you what you want” will bring everything to you in accordance with your efforts. At first you may not necessarily believe that it will work, but the key here is to repeat these positive thoughts over and over again until you start to see results.

Now don’t get me wrong, I’m no spiritualist or dedicated preacher – I’m pretty much the opposite. Unless I’ve done enough research to see that something is valid, my brain will never even consider it. But even as a skeptic, I have come across way too many success stories and rational explanations to doubt the law of attraction.

On a final note, I would like to express my gratitude towards the internet for allowing me to stumble upon this concept once again (good job google!). I may have only decided to utilize the law of attraction a couple of days ago, but I’m somewhat certain that my success story will also be added to the millions that already exist. From this point onward, I will do my very best to fix all of the problems that have accumulated over the past few years via not only action, but also positivity. This has been “The Law of Attraction” from a skeptic’s viewpoint – follow me to see how things unfold. I promise a 100% truthful account of my experience with this.

End-note: if you would like a more professional, accurate explanation, either watch “The Secret” or google/YouTube search “The Law of Attraction”. I’m only a rookie. Follow me?

beautiful-day-1374424_640

From The Heart

I haven’t posted anything for over a month – a result of several factors, I guess. In terms of significance, the two main reasons would be that I spent three quarters of this time lying on a beach in Greece, and the fact that I didn’t really know what to write about. You see, I’ve been pretty busy, but not necessarily in the best way. Apart from my (not-so) little vacation, things have been slightly…tricky?

The saying “not everything will go according to plan” is a popular one, yet we don’t always fully acknowledge it every time we make those plans. In our mind, everything seems logical and perfect – you take the following steps to obtain the following goals. But life is a messy, messy thing – for some more than others.

As far as I know, the majority of us have things we don’t wish to talk about, especially in detail, which is why we prefer to hide them from the world and build a much happier image of ourselves. However, this can be pretty detrimental since we end up feeling like only we are the ones who are going through some sort of mess, when in reality, very few people are as happy as they look in their Instagram pictures. Promise.

I’m less tolerant to discomfort; when things go wrong, I complain. No, it’s not because I’m ungrateful, but because I don’t think it’s necessary to try and hide normal human reactions. Listening to others’ advice can be good, but when my mum occasionally mentions that “things could be much worse” I can’t help but get slightly irritated. Following the logic, you should also consider that things could be much better, which is something I strive for. However, I also continue doing what I initially planned to do, since the universe is not about to wait for some 20-year-old female from a small country to sort her issues.

Life is hard, life is messy, and life loves to fuck you over sometimes. And the funniest part is that, until we die and see (or not) what the last several decades have been all about, we will never know why some individuals tend to get luckier, and some don’t. In my culture, it is a social sin to refer to yourself as “unlucky”, since there are always people who have it way worse. Also, many people are scared to refer to themselves as such, mainly because they think they will genuinely become unlucky.

If luck could be measured on a scale, I honestly don’t know where I would place myself. Since this is purely subjective, I don’t know whether it is an accurate assessment of the current state of affairs. I know that one’s quality of life depends on how much effort they put in, and I know for a fact that I put in a lot of effort. But there are also a lot of things that keep going sideways: from work, to health, to people, to general little unpleasant surprises. Don’t get me wrong – I’m very far from depressed, since I’ve got a lot to appreciate and a lot to look forward to. Not depressed or sad, just slightly tired. In fact, the problems I mentioned above are somewhat manageable; they just require dedication and patience. I guess I’m in the process of accepting that everything is always much more picturesque in our head; we see an empty highway instead of what is actually there – a long, winded maze.

heart-700141_640

I Know That I Don’t

Most people come to a point in their lives where they are no longer sure of who they are, what they want and what the future holds. I like to refer to it as the 20-something crisis; a more optimistic version of the mid-life crisis, during which people seem to forget “how to life” for a period of time. In spite of the fact that being unsure is a perfectly natural state of mind, our society is very unforgiving towards those who express reasonable doubt.

Not knowing what to do is somehow unacceptable in the 21st century. I mean, how can one NOT KNOW what they are striving towards? So many resources! So much support! So much good (although standardized) education! So when successful stockbroker Jordan’s teenage daughter comes home from school one day and says “Dad, I’m not sure what I want to study at college”, it is likely that she will receive the following answer: “Don’t be silly honey, you’ve always wanted to study finance!” (cheers to anyone who got the reference)

However, doubting earlier ideas is definitely not silly – it’s a sign of a healthy rational thought process. The problem lies in how we see the concept of knowledge itself, and how that affects the way in which we perceive the sentence “I don’t know”. Theoretically, knowledge is a very factual concept, based on information which can be tested for validity. We know that the earth revolves around the sun; that a year has 365 days; that plants photosynthesize and so on. So when we are unaware of certain facts, we perceive it as a gap in our knowledge.

But here’s the problem – not all knowledge is factual and unchanging (not to mention that “facts” often change throughout the years themselves). So what we think we “know” concerning who we are, what we want and what the future holds is, in fact, a vague idea. It’s okay to “not know”, because you never really knew in the first place anyway.

game-1821015_640