Don’t tell me I don’t believe in anything. I do, I do believe in things. I believe in flowers. I believe in trying. I believe in waking up early to watch sunrises. I believe in drawing when your heart is beating so fast you can’t think. I believe in laughing. I believe in crying, but I believe that when you cry about something you should cry about it hard, but then never cry about that same thing again. I believe that people who use shampooing conditioner have lost the ability to care, like a tree just swaying in the wind. I believe that there is good, good in people, good in the world and good in me. I believe in looking in the mirror and smiling, even if you have to force it. I believe that the sun rises every morning and sets every night, so that means, everyone has something they can rely on. I believe that life is a canvas, it’s up to us. But most of all I believe that everything will be okay. And to me, it’s irrelevant whether it ever is okay, because if it just keep telling myself it will be, it always will be. So I believe, it is my beliefs that allow me to get up off the bathroom floor and allow me to get out of bed every morning. Believing is everything, to everyone.
I want to be your person.
I want to be the person who sees your sleepy eyes when you first drift into consciousness.
I want to be the person who can make you feel warm when your dog just died.
I want to be the person who you know will always make you a cup of tea.
I want to be the person you eat dinner with every night.
I want to be the person who you want to show your favourite movie to.
I want to be the person who you reach for at 3am.
I want to be the person who you talk about the world news with.
I want to be the person who you walk with.
I want to be the person who you are not scared to be yourself with.
I want to be the person who you can cry with.
I want to be the person who you can laugh with.
I want to be the person you come to when everything is falling apart and you want to smile.
I want to be the person that knows all your flaws and loves them.
I want to be the person who explores you, and knows you, to the deepest corners of your mind.
I want to be your person.
Ever since I can remember feelings are not something I talk about. Whenever subjects in the area of love, hate, fear and sadness came up, I quickly redirected the conversation to something I could handle, for example cats. The one way I felt confident enough to open up was via the internet, but then of course I had to experience the awkward, “Omg, is she going to bring it up in REAL LIFE when I see her!”
For me it took an intimate trip to India, best friends and some serious soul searching to start my journey of being an open person.
1. People Actually Know What You’re Feeling
For all those lucky people out there who are born an ‘open person,’ at this point you’re probable thinking, “Yeah. umm, what’s so cool about that?” But for us closed boxes being in a room of people, even if it’s just a few of your closest friends and actually having them know what you’re thinking and feeling is pretty fricken fantabulous. It’s exhilarating and scary at first but once you settle into the feeling it becomes very comforting.
2. Forces You to Decide
You know when you have a feeling and you can’t put it into words? Yeah, well try. When you talk about these feelings with the people you trust it doesn’t only open you up and get another’s opinion on the matter but it forces you to put those feelings into words, which will help you sort it all out in your head. Think about it this way, how are you meant to deal with your feelings by yourself if you don’t even know what they are?
3. It’s a Filter
One of the many benefits of being yourself is it mostly eliminates those ‘fake friend’ sorts. You know, the ones that only hang out with you because you’re popular. Chances are when you start acting like your true self it’ll scare off all the people that aren’t in it for the long haul. Kind of like setting off a fog horn in a herd of deer, only the deaf ones will stay. (Yes, that was the best metaphor I could think of.)
4. You Become Trusted
If you work hard you’ll start to become more and more comfortable talking about feelings and soon enough you’ll be the one everyone comes to for advice. Not only will they be able to help you through shared experiences but you’ll actually make their lives better, and we all learnt in kindergarten that helping others provides true happiness…!
So there you have it. Four solid reasons on why you should try and be a more open person. So next time someone asks, “What’s wrong?” don’t reply with, “I’m fine,” look ’em straight in the eye and spill your heart out. And after working on it for a while you’ll be left with true happiness and some deaf deer, it doesn’t get better than that.
Yesterday, I was scrolling through my newsfeed, passing by Kardashian News and tips on how to perfectly apply you’re make up when I came across an article about a new website, herself.com. It was created by Caitlin Stasey, someone who clearly set out to aid an issue that comes close to home for many of us. “Herself is a gesture to women for women by women; a chance to witness the female form in all its honesty without the burden of the male gaze, without the burden of appealing to anyone. These women are simply & courageously existing, immortalized within these photos. Within their words, their experiences and stories are offered on Herself in the hopes of encouraging solidarity – that maybe we as women will take comfort in the triumphs of others rather than revelling in each other’s defeats. Let us reclaim our bodies. Let us take them back from those who seek to profit from our insecurity.” -Caitlin Stasey. As I read this explanation there was one phrase that stuck out and helped me to understand what it was all about, “without the burden of appealing to anyone.”
A woman’s body is her body but yet many of us are constantly modifying it to appeal, whether that’s running the extra mile or applying make up we change ourselves to appeal. Now, don’t get me wrong it’s perfectly viable to be fit and wear make up for yourself, in fact this is the goal! So congrats to the ones who have started doing things for themselves. But to the others, realize that your body is yours. Rid yourself of the pressure to always live up to the impossible standards that you’re creating for yourself.
And whoever you are, whether you’re man, a woman, high confidence or low I suggest you take a few minutes to look over the website and view a woman’s body, “without the burden of appealing to anyone.”
I heard a quote that made my mind wonder the other day, “the sooner we start to be ourselves, the sooner we begin to know who we are.” I’m always hearing people talking about, ‘finding themselves,’ or, ‘knowing who they are.’ It’s constantly being used in movie’s and TV. “I must leave you beautiful boy now, so I can find myself…” Uh, you’re right here… What does it mean to know who you are? To be honest I don’t think any one knows until it happens to them, I didn’t. I was just walking along wondering about this nonsense when suddenly, BAM, oh there I am. No, that’s not actually how it happened but that’s what I felt like.
It’s not about knowing things like, I have blonde hair, I’m funny, I’m smart. It’s about learning to love the little things you do, whether that be laughing to yourself, whispering in the dark or trying not to step on the cracks as you walk down the street. It’s about recognizing all the small things inside of you that could make someone fall in love. And then, you fall in love. With yourself.
Ah, doesn’t it sound simple. If only you could just follow steps and it would just come, out of nowhere of course. Unfortunately, in case you haven’t realized yet, life isn’t always that simple, actually it rarely is. If finding yourself were as simple as finding your hairbrush, we’d all be doing it, wouldn’t we? Actually it’s more like finding a black grain of rice in whole bin of white rice. All I can say is keep recognizing those little things in yourself and soon it’ll come, trust me.
The First Woman Manager
Everyday walking into work as an independent, hardworking, and strong woman is hard to do. Working at a grocery store as a stock clerk is considered a “man’s job.”
What did you do wrong to be lifting all that heavy stuff?
– Just because I am a woman and a stock clerk does not mean I did something wrong to have this job.
When we try to fight back against such pathetic and putrid behavior we get judgment thrown down on us. There are men in this world that believe that women are to be the housewives and shouldn’t have a job. Older men are stuck in this way of thinking, because in their time that is what most women agreed to. It is unbelievable that they think the times haven’t changed. They think that because they are old that it is…
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When I was younger I never understood why people thought that girls were more disadvantaged than boys, everything seemed pretty fair. In the last few years I’ve started to realize that girls are not given the same encouragement to push themselves academically as boys are as they go through school, and in the adult world beyond.
I know that this is a global issue too, but I feel that it is particularly a problem in small towns like the one where I live. Most skilled jobs in our town are connected with forestry or utility companies and there are only a half dozen or so well paid jobs done by women.
Without role models, it is hard for young girls to imagine the kind of careers they could have. It seems to me that boys are encouraged to go into the workforce but girls are told to “be realistic” and to, “have achievable goals”. It doesn’t seem to me that girls are encouraged to believe that they can achieve anything that boys can do.
To change this we need to get girls to see the possibilities rather than the present day reality if we want things to change. One way to do this is to invite local women in successful positions to our schools to discuss their experiences. These women may inspire the girls at our school to dream big and take risks. Starting from a young age we need to applaud leadership skills, encourage self-confidence and spur on the drive for change because this is not a woman’s issue, it’s society’s issue.
When, a couple days after we arrived in India I visited the community of Barind to attend the welcoming ceremony I knew that no matter how hard I tried my life could never go back to the way it was before. Everything in Barind was different. The smells, the buildings, the land, the people and even the taste of the air.
We parked along side the road, the three vans all lined up. As we stepped out we all looked around, taking in the surroundings. I hurried to the front, eager to see what was around the corner. I could have never prepared myself for what happened next. As we lined up to enter, the children placed necklaces of yellow flowers around our necks. They dipped their fingers in paint and placed it between our eyebrows. I looked around to see if everyone else was feeling what I was feeling, overwhelmed with joy and fulfillment. By the look on their faces, I knew they felt it too.
We proceeded into the schoolroom. Inside, more children waited. Sitting on the floor around a table with symbols created from rice and grains. The children looked at us with curious eyes, not really knowing what to expect. We’d been previously instructed how and where to sit, we followed these instructions and sat down with the kids, our legs crossed in front of us.
Before the ceremony started a small boy came along to each one of us and secured a colorfully dyed string around our right wrist. When the ceremony started we couldn’t understand what was being said, it was later translated. Even when we didn’t know the words, we understood the weight, power and faith within them. I knew then that Barind was a strong community. One that didn’t have much in the way of things but made up for it in their sense of community and empowerment. We sat quietly throughout the function, our eyes wide with amazement.
From the way the community engaged in the ceremony, to the pride they had in what they were doing and even to how they smiled and laughed when the coconut was smashed on the rocks of the Angon Wadi foundation, I know that Barind is proud. After the ceremony I knew that Barind would be a place that I would allow myself to be proud to work in. I would take pride in the work I would do and for knowing these people.
If someone were to ask me what affected me most during my trip to India, I would answer, “the people.” The people within the communities I worked in were happy. Not to say they don’t need help but despite what they didn’t have they were happy. I think this should be a lesson to all of us. If these people who walk to get their water, and cant always go to school are able to obtain true happiness, we should also be able to grasp true happiness.
It has been estimated that to eliminate slavery from the world, permanently it would cost $10.8 billion. This seems completely unattainable, until you find out that on Black Friday Americans spend $59.1 billion.
We have the money, we have more than enough wealth, now we just need the inspiration.
Break the number up. See how
small it really is if we only came together to make it happen.
This year every time you buy something ask yourself where that money would be better spent.
Lists get us to think which leads us to dream, and it’s when we dream that we find what makes us happy.