​It’s OK To Not Be OK

We are living in a generation that is obsessed with finding happiness. The self-help industry is larger than ever, with people searching for more meaning and a better quality of life. Mindfulness, meditation, and gratitude journals are the new cool.

But it also appears that people are becoming lonelier, sadder, and more depressed. What’s worse is that depression gets such bad press and so much stigma surrounding it.

There is no doubt that sadness or grief can be extremely uncomfortable and intense, but perhaps the idea of sadness that society has created makes it more unbearable to welcome than what it actually is to feel. We have no skills to deal with challenging times other than what we learn over time by experiencing life and gaining wisdom. There is a difference between sadness and depression, but if sadness is not dealt with in a healthy way, it can lead to depression. If you want a healthy self, then you need to heal thyself.

Society has taught us to believe that showing “negative emotions” such as sadness is a sign of weakness. It’s crazy to think how much stigma exists around the idea of being sad or depressed. It drives you to wonder if we all live on the same planet or not. The truth is nobody is exempt from suffering and nobody, no matter how rich or successful, is above depression.

Our world is a hectic place filled with connections, possibilities, ideas, and theories. Our world is also energizing and inspiring, but a lot of times it can be exhausting and confusing. It is our duty to equip ourselves with survival skills and to program our mindsets to complement a healthy way of living, thinking, and acting in order to thrive. We must gain the ability to release our thoughts and embrace stillness and conquer calmness in times of turmoil. This involves learning to recognize self-destructive thoughts and ideas and mentally organize them as to what is true and what is false.

It’s time to accept that it’s OK to not be OK. Sadness serves a purpose. It brings excellent information about your life. It’s a natural response to an event or experience in your life. It’s nothing to fear.
The intention of sadness is to tell you something is not right and you need to make changes in your life or perhaps let someone you love go. The idea is to welcome the emotion like you would with any other feeling, invite it and ask it questions, like “what do I need to learn here” and “can I change something about this situation or not?” Breathe. Exhale. Let go.
Do not make the situation worse by torturing yourself with anger and shame for messing up or feeling not good enough. Under all your loud, crazy, false beliefs you are more than perfect.
We simply cannot control every event in the universe. We cannot control other people’s behavior, but we can control ourselves and how we respond to the situation, and the best way to respond is with compassion. Accept the feeling and forgive yourself for being a human being that feels too much and loves too much. Forgive yourself for not being a robot that can simply ignore undesirable moments and events. Being sad is part of life. Treat your feelings with respect and love yourself enough to not use alcohol, drugs, food, or people as therapy. This will make you feel worse. The yucky feelings will not magically disappear by burying them; they will only fester.
You can choose to share your thoughts and feelings with others but don’t expect others to totally understand, because people are all different and pain is incomparable, every situation is handled differently. The only person that truly understands the depths of your feelings is you, and for this reason you must express yourself as much as you like and don’t feel like you need to fight it, this will start a huge inner conflict.
The idea is to acknowledge sadness as a normal emotion just like happiness. Do the inner work and let it go. All of our emotions lead us to knowing understanding ourselves better.
Also, just like our emotions have a valuable purpose, crying also serves us. The emotional tears we shed help the body recover from stressful events by excreting excess hormones such as the old stress hormone and help you to detoxify emotionally. So crying makes you feel better. Now you have every reason to cry it out.

I hope this helped many of you.

How To Understand Different Online Communication Culture

Facebook is Thanksgiving dinner. Your whole family is there your parents, your siblings, your cousins, including the cousins so distant that you don’t feel weird about flirting with them. Your random friends from high school who still live in your hometown and for some reason or another don’t interact with their own families and are now awkwardly here.
There are many different tables people sit at, an grownups’ table where people have Serious Conversations About What’s Going On In Our Lives, a kids’ table that seems to be a continuous high-pitched shrill whine of incomprehensible noise, the den table around which the middle-aged guys shoot the shit about sports, the coffee table around which the middle-aged women gossip about celebrities.
There is the corner where you stand with the other young adults making small talk about how much you hate the chintzy decor, how you’d like to be anywhere else in the world right now, and how you are paranoid that your parents will overhear you talk about sex or use a swear word. Vacation photographs are plentiful, interspersed with predictable political debates between the one angry Cordesian and the one strident Japanese(JAP).
At any given point, someone will be slumped on the couch crying while other people are desperately trying to console them, while being ignored by everyone else in the house.
Twitter is a big cocktail party. Everyone is in their 20s or trying with varying degrees of success to pretend they are in their 20s. People are either extremely well-dressed or dressed in the sloppy casual way of someone communicating they are too important to have to be well-dressed. The ambient noise is loud enough that it’s pointless trying to communicate other than in short, staccato sentences. There will be one exception, extremely drunk, who is conducting a full-on rant in his own little part of the room — no one will ever be sure exactly what he’s saying because everyone drifts in and out of paying attention to him at a different point. Everyone’s eyes are constantly roving the rest of the room for someone more famous, more interesting or more attractive than you to talk to. It is extremely dangerous to mention shitty gossip about somebody because they may in fact be right behind you, and yet everybody does it, because what else is there to talk about?
Random one liner jokes cribbed from stand-up comedians or directly quoting an episode of The Trend Show that aired last night abound. Whenever you come home from one of these parties your roommate asks, “Did you have fun?” and rather than actually answering the question you say, “I totally chatted with [random celebrity] standing in line for the punch bowl!”
Tumblr is the basement lounge of a college dormitory, after midnight on a week night. Everyone here should theoretically be studying or sleeping, and is instead here because of loneliness, procrastination and/or some kind of substance abuse problem. Whether or not substances are actually involved, everyone is either draped over pieces of furniture in an opiate haze or amphetaminically pacing rapidly back and forth as though they have an itch all over their body. The conversation goes through odd peaks and lulls many silences that would be awkward if everyone wasn’t too messed up right now to experience the sensation of awkwardness. Only to be suddenly broken by someone engaging in a long, meandering monologue about something horrifically personal, which either inspires a series of people “chiming in” with their own similar monologues or instead leads to a shouting, vicious argument over some tangential point made in the monologue. At least one of the guys in this room self-identifies as a Nazi, and everyone has kind of come to accept it.
The TV is on, and frequently people will mention whatever happens to be on the screen at the moment, but no one is really watching even though it’s a large TV on at a very loud volume. It’s tuned to one of those three digit cable channels that is showing a weird late night mix of Saturday morning cartoons, “for mature audiences” anime and call in shows produced in someone’s basement about UFO abductions.
LinkedIn is a corporate networking event and charity banquet.It is very similar to Facebook, except no one actually knows each other at all and everyone is wearing a tie or a string of pearls. All the small talk has an air of desperation to it. Everyone is craning to see the job title on your name tag says. Business cards are exchanged in huge numbers. Terms like “ROI” are used regularly and without irony. Any two people who see each other in this room and are actually friends will avoid each other all night out of a certain unnameable shame. This is by far the most depressing and unpleasant of all the rooms so far listed.
Google Plus is a “social” organized by the official social committee of a college campus. There are many brightly colored posters telling you where and when it is and encouraging you to take advantage of the free refreshments. After an initial flurry in which the refreshments are all eaten, there is no one left here but a handful of “facilitators” who are paid by the college to be here and be friendly, and some freshmen who are too awkward to just get up and leave but also too awkward to make conversation or eye contact. Many of the people who stopped by to get free refreshments were just on their way to get drunk at Twitter. The rest will be found getting stoned with each other in the basement of this building, on Tumblr. Pinterest
I have never been on Pinterest.

​Life Is Fleeting, But We Must Press On

“There is no normal life that is free of pain. It’s the very wrestling with our problems that can be the impetus for our growth.”
—Fred Rogers
It’s hard to believe that the year is already half over. We crossed the half-way point in June, and as we turn the corner into the later part of the year, I once again come to terms with the realization that the year is not new anymore, and that life continues on as it always has, hurried and unavoidable.
When the year seems new, the canvas of my life seems fresh and untainted. I am unburdened; blissfully oblivious of how quickly time flies. I set goals and intentions for how I’ll live and how I’ll grow. I resolve to be better. The weight of the last year lifts for a moment, and I feel as though I can do anything.
Then I realize I still  have responsibilities, and even baggage. Even my most low-key resolution – reaching  to the people I care about – is exhausting; I don’t want to keep sharing my worries with friends who seem to have it together. I tell myself I don’t have time to chart- I’m just too busy. In short, I am sick of “trying.”
Some of you may be valiantly keeping all the promises you secretly made to yourself at the beginning of this year. But others, like me, are losing the determination to stick to our guns as cold July days tick by in Nairobi, thick with lazy  vibes, and humidity. Our resolutions are quickly forgotten in the chaos of a monotonous days of the week, a bad case of strep throat, or the death of a loved one. Our best intentions are slowly getting beset by daily life.
To the people who feel like this year has already gotten out of control, who once again feel stagnant in their quest for a better self, who feel overwhelmed, who realize the brevity of the days, I’ve got a heavy but hopeful message: Mistakes and steps backward can be a necessary part of the journey, and change does not happen all at once.
In his book, Warrior of the Light, the author Paulo Coelho writes,
“He [the Warrior] often finds himself faced by the same problems and situations, and seeing these difficult situations return, he grows depressed, thinking he is incapable of making any progress in life.
‘I’ve been through all this before,’ he says to his heart.
‘Yes, you have been through all this before,’ replies his heart. ‘but you have never been beyond it.’

Then he [the Warrior] realizes that these repeated experiences have but one aim: to teach him what he does not want to learn.”
It makes sense that the majority of people don’t want to learn hard things through trial and error; it leads to disappointment and frustration. We desperately want for life to be normal or easy, for good things to magically happen to us. We are a reactionary species, and most recently a society which values instant gratification. Rare is the person who pursues gradual challenges or change.
To assume I will still have friends, if I never reach out and put in the effort to connect, is leaving a lot to chance. Most likely the results won’t be good. If I want to love my friends well, I better choose to be a more intentional friend by reaching out to them in tangible ways, every single day. Yet, because this change of self doesn’t happen overnight, I end up feeling like a garbage friend when I realize I haven’t touched base with certain people in over a month. Am I wasting my days? Why can’t I seem to get it together?
The “day-to-day” is messy, agonizing, and just down-right tiring. We are constantly faced with challenges and often don’t do what is ultimately best for us. We mess up. This is when those feelings of inadequacy start to creep in. We beat ourselves up for not being better than we are. But guys listen up: Personal growth has no timeline; there is no deadline to meet.
I believe that in the telling of my greater life story, misadventures lead to deeper self-awareness, clarity regarding our personal priorities, and give hopeful hints in answering some tough questions. What do I prioritize? What led to the failure I experienced? These rough times lead to the change I so desperately seek at the beginning of every year. The daily challenges are what make up a life that is consistently striving “for more.”
More purpose. More. Adventure. More growth.
In writing this, I hope to not only myself, but others too. While embarking on a mission towards a better self is risky, to never take the first steps because it will “take too much time or effort, would be denying ones’ self of the incredible opportunity to make the kind of change that instills itself in the soul and holds on forever. By wrestling with my tendency to give up making the effort to connect, I am building stronger will that can translate to other areas of my life. I may not always want to be vulnerable with people when connecting to them, and maybe I’ll chose happy hour over chatting, but at least I am trying. Only by trying, even if there is a possibility for failure, can we grow steadfast in our intentions.
Do not think of this year as a sprint towards a better you, think of it as one leg in the long marathon towards a more fulfilling story for your life.</h2?

We all learn at different paces and through different methods, so as we head into the latter part of this year, simply resolve to grow. Don’t give up this year as a lost cause. Set intentions and fail, knowing that one day you will not make the same mistakes and the goals, which once seem so unreachable, will come into view. I want to own and create a magical and empowered personal story for myself, one “letter to a friend” at a time, and so I will press on toward greater intimacy with those I most love, with the hope that this task that seems so challenging now, will one day be a concrete part of my ever evolving story.
“…we find ourselves trying to remember the good times and trying to forget the bad times, and we find ourselves thinking about the future. We start to worry, thinking “What am I gonna do?”, “Where am I gonna be in ten years?” ….. in the end none of us have very long on this earth – life is fleeting. And if you’re ever distressed, cast your eyes to the sky when the stars are strung across the velvety night, and when a shooting star streaks through the blackness turning night into day, make a wish…Make your life spectacular.”
–JACK (1996)

TELL ME HOW YOU SPEND YOUR DAYS AND I’LL TELL YOU WHO YOU’LL BECOME

believe

The good news is, you have the same 24 hours as every successful person you know. The difference though might be that they spend this time more wisely.

One of the best pieces of advice I’ve ever received is to monitor the things I allocate my time to and make adjustments so that my everyday behavior reflects what I want out of life. In other words, I have to make sure my daily actions are in line with my long-term goals.

The thing that most people don’t understand is that they build their career daily. You carve your…

How do you spend your days? Do you go to work and come home to watch TV before bed? This must mean you’re satisfied with your job and happy with your life. Do you make time to go to networking events after work? Then you probably want to take your career to the next step or continue your professional development. Do you spend your 5 to 9 volunteering or working on your creative projects – whether that’d be writing a book, filming and editing videos, painting, making beaded bracelets etc.? Then you have something you’re passionate about and showing the world what you care about. Do you stay home and binge watch the latest series and movies or mindlessly browse the Internet?

If you do something well and consistently, it will become your reality. Habits develop as a result of doing something long enough. They become the building blocks of your long-term behavior. This in turn determines the course of your life. If you’re unhappy with where you are, figure out what’s wrong and make concrete changes to fix it. Pay attention to your habits and what you naturally spend your time doing. Eliminate distractions and focus. This isn’t to say that you can’t occasionally take breaks and binge watch episodes of your favorites movies or shows(*cough*). However, maintaining a balance is healthy.

You build your future every day. It doesn’t just happen to you. You create it.

A full-time blogger didn’t just write one blog post to reach that level of success. A milestone can take years of dedication, smart investments, strategic thinking and planning.

Take a look at your life now. Have your actions brought you closer to your goals? Are you repeating mistakes and expecting to see different results? Focus on what you can control – your thoughts, your actions. I guarantee you the rest will fall into place.

So, what did you do today? Or better yet, what will you do tomorrow?

What if you had the courage to pursue the things you love? What’s holding you back from living your dreams?

Life is a Gift

Life is a gift. Live everyday as a thank-you note.

-Anonymous-

From the moment we are conceived we receive the greatest gift. We come to this world. From the moment we are conceived we receive the greatest gift. We come to this world and we open our eyes, the first thing we do is scream! We are taken into the unknown and we start learning “what world and we open our eyes, the first thing we do is scream! We are taken into the unknown and we start learning “what we need to know to survive” and unconsciously we start the race.

Existential crisis have become so common nowadays, it is our conscience trying to flourish and keeping us present. We start discovering how precious our present moment is, and we are eager to discover our truth.

Health and eating habits start to change, discovering your passion becomes a priority, experiencing life is your greatest gratification, new people come into your life full of positiveness and becomes your family and only the ones who matter and don’t care embrace the new you with true love.

You are definitely experience a lot of challenges along the way, since to others you have lost your mind, because the most valuable things for you are not material anymore, you become an observer of the physical world and the only time you worry about is NOW.

You stay away from negativity and toxic people, but you do it with love. You accept that many are still in the journey of getting a glimpse of light while you have started your greatest adventure.

You are just thankful to be alive, to breath, for every decision you made brought you here. You have just discovered that you are able to see the world with new eyes, the challenges that come along will only benefit you to become a better version of yourself. You no longer mourn on the past or have anxiety about the future, because the only life you have is NOW.

You are just blessed and thankful to feel alive, and realize the greatest things of the world and the universe are within yourself. You love the gift of life you were given since the moment you were conceived, and thank you becomes your daily note. And your journey into remembering and discovering yourself begins.

With Love & Joy

 

 

I’m Afraid To Tell You How Much I Like You

Dear You,

I am writing this letter to let you know that I like you the moment I set my
eyes on you. It grows deeper by day and believe me I’ve tried every possible way to shrug and avoid this feeling. Funny how though, we hardly talk, but those small talked from the past is enough for me to treasure for a lifetime.

You may not be able to read this letter anyway for I have no guts on giving this to you. If you happened to read this letter by any means I want you to leave it just like that. You don’t have to answer nor mention it. I forbid you. I know I am hallucinating to believe that you will feel the same for I know it is going @:…III uu impossible. No, I am not asking for more, meeting you and knowing you is more than resume is .
On my
So I want you to stay quiet, go on with your beautiful and adventurous life, have fun and continue being awesome as you are. This letter happens to just pass you by, that it never happened, that this is just like our normal encounter every day; ignoring each other. Because knowing that you read this makes me fall to my knees and makes my pulse race.

I also want you to know that your voice is music to my ears, that I end up wearing my earplugs almost every day because hearing more means falling for you more.

Did you know that you have the sweetest smile that I have ever seen? And that you look twice more beautiful  when you throw one?

But most of all you have the most passionate eyes. And I wonder how many fall on their knees when they see you stare? You have a stare that could mean anything or nothing to someone, but for me it means everything. It means even for a while I get to glimpse with those eyes, with your passionate eyes.

And lastly, you wear your hair like no one else can. Be it lay on your shoulder or in a bun. You wear it like an armor, like you are the most feminine of all.

I hope these makes you smile even a little, but if it creeps you out, my deepest apology.

To tell you honestly, you are the person I never wanted to meet. Because I know meeting someone like you means changing my beliefs, it means a big impact on my everyday life. You are the person I never planned to meet. You are the person I was afraid to meet. You are the person I never expected to meet.

But I want to thank you. Because meeting you means I am still alive, that after all those bad times in the past that I almost believe that this is impossible to feel again, like an arrow shot from a crossbow, like a flash of lighting leaving a jagged line across the sky, it happened, so sudden that it is almost foreign to me.

Thank you, though I know you have no idea about this (but you have now), thank you, because in the shortest months of my life I feel more alive than ever, more delighted, more colorful.

You serve as the rainbow after all the storms. Thank you for being my inspiration in so many ways you know nothing about.
I’m afraid for this day to come, to finally bid goodbye. I feel so sad every time I think of it and I do think of it every day; from the moment I open my eyes in the morning to the moment I close it at night. If only I can drag the days longer to always hear your voice even if I always wear my earplugs, to always see your smile, to always take a sneak on your eyes, to always admire how your hair perfectly suits you,.

If only I can drag the days longer to always be with you even from afar and feel your presence each and every time. It hurts and it hurts more every day. If only I can wipe all the feelings I have for you. If only I can teach this heart of mine to stop beating for you. If only I can unlove you. If only it would be that easy. I will. But it isn’t, because I have fallen for you more than I can imagine.

I’m sorry for liking you.

I’m sorry if, for the past months that me glancing-to-staring at you gives you creeps. Sorry if I irritate you when you catch me glaring at you. I don’t even know why I am apologizing in the first place but I know somehow with those instances I felt that I annoyed you and I am deeply sorry for that. It’s just, there are some things in this world you can’t let your eyes off it; no matter how hard you tried diverting away from everything.

I guess that’s the beauty of the eyes, it will lead you right back where it finds beauty beyond comparison; but as tricky as it is, it pursues the things that will hurt you all the more without it knowing as it did to mine.

I guess it’s just me building pile of memories with my eyes that somewhere behind it, it has seen something worth staring, worth keeping, worth remembering.

Please don’t hate my words. There are days that I’m bad at it.

I’m really bad at it.

If by fate we see each other again one day, I want you to ignore me, to continue walking, to continue where you are going. But I know deep down, I want you to smile at me and wave at me and ask how am I. But no, please, don’t do that.

And God’s be good you will live a life with so much adventure, a life not just what you desire but a life that you deserve with your family, your friends, and your special someone. And I am more than happy to know that.

Thank you because, because of you, I have felt this kind of emotion the same feeling I have when I’m on top of every mountain, the same feeling I have when I’m in the middle of the sea, the same feeling I have when I am surrounded by my books.

Thank you because, because of you I have felt this kind of emotion; as high as the highest peak and as deep as deepest sea and all the roads in between.

See you at the crossroads, this whole thing meeting you, it was and still an extraordinary and blissful adventure I will never forget about.

The Opposite of Fear…….

Everything you want is on the other side of fear.”Jack Canfield

Let me tell you about fear. It’s poison. It’s poison for your mind. It makes you lose control, it makes you freeze, it makes you take the wrong decision. When you let fear take over, you’re just an echo of your former self. An empty shadow and nothing more.

But we’re all afraid, aren’t we? Even the brave are afraid. There’s no such thing as fearless. There’s always something to be afraid of. What will happen, what might happen, what we might lose, what we might never gain.

So… what is there to be had on the other side of fear?

The awful truth about life is that what doesn’t kill often makes you wish it did. There’s great sadness and pain in this world, and we all get our fair share. But, you see, eventually all those things that don’t kill us either make us stronger or weaker. After a while, when pain becomes but a memory, we have a choice.

We can either decide to become stronger or weaker. We can harden ourselves up or not. The choice is always ours.

But we’re afraid… even when the pain goes away, we’re afraid it might return. Even after heartbreaks heal, we’re afraid someone else will break our hearts again. We might never want to fall in love again. We might want to spend a lifetime behind closed doors, just to be sure.

That’s when we need to fight fear, we need to see what is it that we can find on the other side of fear.

All our dreams and expectations. All our ambitions. All the power and the courage and the determination and the discipline we could ever need. All that lies just on the other side of fear.

I’ve always wanted to go to the United States and forge a better future there. Ever since I was six, actually. I never even traveled there, mostly because I was afraid of the visa requirements. Or the fact that I’d fail. I just wanted to fight a sure battle, but no one could ever guarantee me that. No one ever will.

And I’ve filled the ocean that lies between Romania and the US with excuses, endless scenarios, and fear. I’ve thought about it, over and over again, and decided that it would be best to wait. Living in a foreign country, all by myself, seemed like too much. Just the thought that I’d need to go through a lot of trouble just to arrive at my destination seemed impossible.

I’ve never even been on a plane.

But…

There’s one thing about me that I never lost, one thing that I didn’t learn or mimic from others. I want things so badly that I’d be willing to do anything to get them. When I decide that it’s time to do so, I don’t let anything stand in my way.

I did the same for writing. I wrote on and off for 8 years before finally deciding that I’d better man up and write more and more stuff. And finish stuff. And get stuff published.

There are no impossible journeys in life. Only journeys we’re too afraid to even start.

Now I know that life’s all about being afraid and doing it anyways. In fact, fear should motivate me. It should drive me to act, to try my best, to try to solve problems.

I don’t want to spend a lifetime dreaming about an ideal future. I don’t want to wish for it to happen. I want to make it happen. Because no one else will do it for me.

And that makes all the difference.

The world is never against you. The world does not hate you.

You’re just alone. You and your dreams. And it’s entirely up to you to make them happen, one at a time, before it’s too late.

Because the most tragic thing that could ever happen to you is to realize that it’s too late.