Day 7 – Make peace with your past so it won’t screw up the present


What a year this has been. Covid, politics, riots, death, destruction and more politics. My entire life.. nearly.. I have found positive ways to move through and past stress.  It takes a lot of effort sometimes but specifically in the past 15 years, I have legitimately found ways to bring myself into a better state of mind.. invisibility for example (Day 6).  I honestly felt that I had grown up and healed from those crazy childhood emotional wounds.  I felt I had made peace with it all.

Set peace of mind as your highest goal, and organize your life around it.  ~Brian Tracy

I’m trying to get more creative in my approach to finding more humor in everything. Sometimes this feels impossible. It used to be so much easier to do this. I felt carefree and fun for years.  I had about 10 years of absolute humorous mayhem.  Everything cracked me up and most everything made me happy.

A day without sunshine is like, you know, night.  ~Steve Martin

Not sure what happened about 3 years ago.  Don’t think it was just one thing.  I think it was a multitude of events, cuts, burns, stabs, and living in the unhappiness of others.  Trying to make them happier and feel more secure by trying to live in their reality and adjust my style, hair, clothes, and attitude to their expectations of what I was supposed to be.  I did this at the cost of my best self.  Constantly trying to be something I wasn’t.  Yet, even when i attempted to change everything about myself, it still did not make anyone any happier or any more secure. I have felt that I have regressed to that sad, angry, morbid child Sami full of hurt and resentment about the cruelty and unfairness of the world.

Life is too short to waste any amount of time on wondering what other people think about you. In the first place, if they had better things going on in their lives, they wouldn’t have the time to sit around and talk about you. What’s important to me is not others’ opinions of me, but what’s important to me is my opinion of myself.
~ C. JoyBell C

Of course, I knew this.  However, I fought against it despite my knowledge of who I was and how I was.  I always seemed to be surrounded by others who seemed to be doing great with things they way they were.  They were able to fit in nicely in their environment.  They learned to close their mouths when needed. Never did they fight the fight.  No truth to power. 

Or

Even worse, they would do all of the things I had been trying to do.  They would fight, scream, say exactly what I had just said and win…and yes, somehow always win.  I kept trying to to fit in.  Obviously, I didn’t.  I would find out that I really just wasn’t where I thought I was or doing things how others wanted me to do it. The little me had somehow managed to creep back into my head.  She began screaming at herself things like, “I am unworthy.  Nobody loves me. I am a horrible person.  I am stupid and not qualified to do anything.”

I wasn’t respected, loved, heard, and sometimes not even seen.  These facts were presented to me and only compounded the way I felt about myself.  The way I had felt about myself as a child.  The way, I apparently had never stopped feeling about myself.  The more I tried to stop digging in that well, the more these thought pressed forward.

I’ve got a bad case of the 3:00 am guilts – you know, when you lie in bed awake and replay all those things you didn’t do right? Because, as we all know, nothing solves insomnia like a nice warm glass of regret, depression and self-loathing.
~D.D. Barant

Why are you lying awake, thinking that you’re a terrible person?
~~To keep my mind occupied when I can’t sleep. Some people count sheep. I self-loathe.
~Rainbow Rowell

When I was seen, it was always when I was at my absolute least best.  I was starting to get mad.  Starting to hold my tongue and mimic all of what I thought was right and still not succeeding.  I was mad at others and even more mad at myself for doing it wrong.  Being right but somehow always doing it wrong.  I was jealous of others success or apparent success and mad that they were always so happy or apparently happy.  So respected or apparently respected. So well thought of .. so .. so .. everything.  It was a super dark time in my life.  Worst time ever in most recent years. 

Anger, resentment and jealousy doesn’t change the heart of others– it only changes yours.
~ Shannon Alder

The way you think about yourself determines your reality. You are not being hurt by the way people think about you. Many of those people are a reflection of how you think about yourself.
~Shannon L. Alder

A few times I swore that i was going to ignore the perfectness of others and just be myself.  I knew that’s what made me happy.  I would laugh again.  Make others laugh again.  I knew I could do it. I occasionally succeeded and thought I had made progress.  I would ashamedly find out that I was only delusional about my fitting in. I would not hear about it directly, but be blindsided by this information in the most embarrassing of ways.

Punch after punch, blow after blow, hit after hit.  Yeah pretty violent.  Every time I thought everything was ok ……

At the same time, I also knew that I have been in the wrong group and living the wrong life. Doing the wrong thing.  Going against my own grain.  I have been going against myself and my innate nature. It has just not been working out.  But damn.. I keep on intently trying to make it work because the truth is, I love my life, my job, my friends, and my family. 

If you had a person in your life treating you the way you treat yourself, you would have gotten rid of them a long time ago…
~Cheri Huber

I have been in a mental rut.  It has been a dangerous rut.  I am now working hard to get out of that rut and what I have found is that the rut is a rut of my own making.  My own desire to make things right, fit in, be good, a rut of negative self-talk.  It’s the same rut I had been in when I was a teen.  The rut of self-non-acceptance.  Self-talk that always put the blame on me for everything wrong in the world.  My sneaky way of making others laugh to get out of challenging situations and emotions has not been working.

The greatest weapon against stress is our ability to choose one thought over another. ~William James.

So, here I am.  Working on rebuilding my funny bones, reclaiming the paths of resilience that I had spent years building up, and reinventing wacky world of Sam that made me so happy. Getting my funny train back on track has been very difficult and nearly impossible.

However,  I am ready.  I get it.  I am still here. I am still as good as anyone else, not better than, but equal to. I am o.k. I am working on choosing the words that go in my head. It’s not what they say, it’s what you hear. It’s not what I say, it’s what they hear.  

Never forget that once upon a time, in an unguarded moment, you recognized yourself as a friend.~ Elizabeth Gilbert

I am working my way back through music, art, meditation, good friends, real friends, letting go of what does not bring happiness, and mostly bringing focus and intentional actions back into my life.  Going back to minimalism, preparing for retirement, and learning to laugh again.  Like really laugh. 

In relationship to work.. I am shooting for mediocrity.

Only the mediocre are always at their best.  ~Jean Giraudoux

In relationship to friends… fame… fortune.. etc. I have decided I would rather just be myself.  wish me luck.  Please.  Myself is a pretty good thing to be..I know this is true, but just have to keep reminding myself.

Don’t let people who fuck with your mind enter into the door of your mind.
~Curtis Tyrone Jones

I will not be “famous,” “great.” I will go on adventuring, changing, opening my mind and my eyes, refusing to be stamped and stereotyped. The thing is to free one’s self: to let it find its dimensions, not be impeded.
~Virginia Woolf

Here’s to the crazy ones. The misfits. The rebels. The troublemakers. The round pegs in the square holes. The ones who see things differently. They’re not fond of rules. And they have no respect for the status quo. You can quote them, disagree with them, glorify or vilify them. About the only thing you can’t do is ignore them. Because they change things. They push the human race forward. And while some may see them as the crazy ones, we see genius. Because the people who are crazy enough to think they can change the world, are the ones who do.  ~Rob Siltanen

Other voices that rang in my head:  Thegirl; custard; lucid; language; catladysings; compound; anxiety; bop; method; mon; dry; gladgame; writingbug

Who go better do better


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This random hand painted sign on the bumper of a Nigerian truck made me smile.

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Based on the craziness going on in the world, the 24 hour cycle of bad news that the media pushes out, and just the meanness of the people who have always really been mean, I think that sometimes we forget that expression.

In my world, I have been very fortunate to have had the opportunities that I have had and have had the ability to surround myself with amazing people who choose to go better and do better daily.  I have always tried to model myself after them.  Don’t get me wrong, I’m a decent person, but not as decent as the people I have chosen to cling on to as my role models.

The last few years have presented some gigantic personal challenges and emotional set backs.  So many that I sort of lost the inner me that has always been able to pick myself up, dust myself off, and truck the hell on.  The last few months in particular gutted me with sadness, frustration, and anger.

The logical side of my brain is always aware that I have been and continue to be blessed.  But the logical side had recessed so far that the emotional heart and brain took over and started incessantly repeating some of the darkest and most insecure thoughts and emotions that had plagued me as a child and teenager and well into part of my adulthood.

The fact that I knew these thoughts and frustrations were all in my head, did not help me overcome the spiral downward I was feeling and the eventual wall I knew I would hit.  That I had hit before.  I knew where that would eventually lead and that made me even more sad.

Logically, none of the bad feelings were real.  Emotionally they were all too real and really all too terrifying.  Like a clamp on my heart.  Because of what was going on in my head and the lack of control I was feeling with my mind and emotions, I started shutting down.  I started feeling that old, old, old angst that I had promised myself years ago I would never allow to enter my heart again.  I started feeling bad about myself and questioning everything and everyone around me.  I started illogically hating myself and who I was and where I knew I was going.

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About 6 weeks ago I woke up and my logical mind for the first time in awhile felt back in control.  It was clear to me that while I felt rational once again I needed to take immediate action to maintain that visible light at the end of a very dark tunnel.  I knew I had to begin the arduous task of reprogramming my mind to focus on all of the amazing things that have happened in my life and all of of the amazing things that were still going on in the world.

I began to limit the amount of far right and far left wind media I would allow myself to watch.  I found some positive social media sites that dedicated themselves to only presenting good news and happy stories.  Facebook pages like “Good news and Happy Stories Only” and Mike Rowe’s “Returning the Favor“.  I youtube’d funny baby, animal and comedian videos as well as any video that profiled the struggles that other people had overcome and how they overcame odds much greater than I had ever faced.  I spent the first few weeks just sitting on my couch bawling my eyes out during each of these very emotional and wonderful stories.

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Another step I took towards recovering myself was to begin working through my social media and deleting the people and the articles that related to the many things that were bringing me down, had been part of the spiral downward of my confidence and happiness.  I had a tech friend go through my Facebook and delete anything that was causing some weird friend requests and terrible and false news stories to land on my newsfeed.  This did cause some people in my life to disappear that I had not intended.  However, I don’t miss the amount of time I wasted on social media looking at how everyone else’s life appeared so amazing while mine was.. bleh.. and slightly depressing.

I have been focusing on cool facts and documentaries related to historical figures.  Paying attention to why those people were so amazing.  Finding inspirational quotes and just attempting to be a better person who might one day inspire others.

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Everyone has a unique tongue print, just like fingerprints.  Banging your head against a wall burns 150 calories.  It is impossible to lick your elbow (busted).  If you lift a kangaroo’s tail off the ground it can’t hop.  Casu marzu is a Sardinian cheese that contains live maggots. The maggots can jump up to five inches out of cheese while you’re eating it, so it’s a good idea to shield it with your hand to stop them jumping into your eyes.  The average person spends 6 months of their lifetime waiting on a red light to turn green. A single cloud can weight more than 1 million pounds.  During your lifetime, you will produce enough saliva to fill two swimming pools.  Coca Cola would be green if coloring wasn’t added to it.  You cannot snore and dream at the same time.  In a study of 200,000 ostriches over a period of 80 years, no one reported a single case where an ostrich buried its head in the sand. More than 50% of the people in the world have never made or received a telephone call.  Most lipstick contains fish scales.  The first American film to show a toilet being flushed on screen was Alfred Hitchcock’s Psycho.  An epidemic of laughing that lasted almost a year broke out in Tanganyika (now Tanzania) in 1962. Several thousand people were affected, across several villages. It forced a school to close. It wasn’t fun, though — other symptoms included crying, fainting, rashes, and pain.  Honey never spoils.  Earth is the only planet not named after a god.  A “jiffy” is the scientific name for 1/100th of a second.

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I started getting back into my art.

I began to put more effort into my Spanish studies by reading some well-known fairytales.  Nice break from stressful adult Spanish learning.  Also, reading these stories guaranteed successful comprehension.

I started walking places more and eating healthier again.  I cut back on coffee and started drinking herbal teas and even did a few cleanses.  Using the model of positive energy balance.  While I had been living in Korea, I had taken some Reiki classes that dealt with energy healing.  I made myself go back to treating myself and focusing on my chakra practice that I had stopped doing.

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I contacted  The Distant Healing Network  and put in a request for positive energy and love to be sent my way.

Finally, the hardest thing for me to do was to reach out to a counselor to express my concerns about myself.  I requested any type of help that could be provided short of going on medication.  I allowed myself to accept that I was going through a depressive period that very well could be related to hormonal changes due to my age.  (Menopause is real and so is depression).

I slowly began to feel consistently better and better able to focus on the good things in my life and the people that build me up rather than make me feel bad about myself. To realize that I deserve more than how some people have treated me in my life and how even I do not always treat myself right.

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I started writing in my “Starting Today” Journal which is a journal of intention and change.  Every day I write one sentence or a page on things I will start doing today.  One of the things that I have started doing is seeking out stories, movies, and people that will motivate me to be a person who go better to do better.  Every day I do this, I really believe I will be better.  Thanks for reading.

Things to read to go better to do better.

Happier.com – Humans of New York, Amy Poehler Smart Girls, Deepak Chopra, Sweet Green, etc.

Prsuit (@Prsuti)

Prsuit is an Instagram account that posts inspirational quotes as well as links to their articles each day. This Instagram account is dedicated to giving knowledge and inspiration to their followers—not to trying to sell them on a product. If you want an account that is all about giving you the tools you need for success, follow this account.

Achieve the Impossible (@achievetheimpossible)

Achieve the Impossible Instagram account focuses purely on motivational quotes to keep you striving for the goal of your business or life. This Instagram feed is filled with feel-good phrases that will fill you with positive energy.

Zig Ziglar (@thezigziglar)

Zig Ziglar’s Instagram account is made to fuel your motivation with quotes that will be sure to brighten up and boost your day. This account is all about feeling positive with exactly what you are doing in life, right now.

Circles Of Inspiration by Anna Pereira Founder of Thewellnessuniverse.com; Lean in circles; 10 People you’ve never heard of who changed the world

x0xo

We can do better

[Intro]
We can do better
Oh yeah, we can do better

[Verse 1]
I know it hurt bad, your mom left your dad
When you were a little girl
You think I’m gonna leave ’cause history repeats
We’ve seen it around the world
Oh, all that we’re told is this will get old
We’ll cheat and we’ll both get hurt
Against all the odds we’ll pray to the gods
That this love works

[Pre-Chorus]
When all we see is bad blood and mistakes
All we hear are sad songs ’bout heartbreaks
And no matter how long it takes
We’re not gonna give up

[Chorus]
We can do better (ha)
Oh, we can do better
And nothing lasts forever (ha)
We can do better

[Verse 2]
Things can get rough, we might drink too much
And say things we shouldn’t say
Forgive and forget ‘fore we go to bed
And we’re gonna be okay
Some people pretend it’s not gonna end
And end up then walk away
But that isn’t me, I’m not gonna leave
I’m here to stay

[Pre-Chorus]
When all we see is bad blood and mistakes
All we hear are sad songs ’bout heartbreaks
And no matter how long it takes
We’re not gonna give up

[Chorus]
We can do better (ha)
Oh, we can do better
And nothing lasts forever (ha)
We can do better

[Bridge]
I’m not worried ’cause the thing is
We can do better
I know you and I are different
We can do better
I don’t wanna overthink it
We can do better
I know you and I are different
We can do better

[Pre-Chorus]
When all we see is bad blood and mistakes
All we hear are sad songs ’bout heartbreaks
And no matter how long it takes
We’re not gonna give up

[Chorus]
We can do better (ha)
We can do better
And nothing lasts forever (ha)
We can do better

[Outro]
We can do better