Self-help Sketching

Doodles will forever be a source of therapy for me. Putting a pen to paper is therapeutic, isn’t it?

If it isn’t for you, I’m sure you have something that calms you… How often do you do it?

Lately I’ve been sketching everyday pretty naturally, I don’t know if anyone else can relate but it seems that there is an overflow of creativity and artistic/intrinsic motivation.

Today I’m keeping things short and sweet, and sharing a few of my latest sketchbook gems. I’m seeing improvement in some areas and not in others, but for me it never has been about the quality when it comes to sketches.

Mental Health Discussion

In the very beginning of this Ted Talk I was captivated, the eloquence with which Andrew speaks, is truly captivating. Truly, no one does think about the ludicrous feeling of not wanting to take food out of the fridge for lunch, not being able to get out of bed to shower.

It is also an interesting idea that we are far behind in treatment for illnesses like depression, yet we have come so far in the past 100, 50, 20 years.

I have found myself not being able to do those same things lately, not walking downstairs to get food out of the fridge, not leaving the house. It’s a huge problem, it’s an illness that plagues the world, and I find it interesting that it seems that nothing can separate this illness from individual personality and character. Diluting your mental state with medication is sometimes necessary and beneficial, but it is that, that separates yourself from your own insight. Existential questions that are asked by all, mingle in the brain of the depressed, are pondered often and thoroughly…. I wish it felt beautiful and profound to be a person who ponders, sometimes I suppose it is.

I’m interested to hear any thoughts about this, it can be lonely struggling with your own mind, it can be frustrating when you search for connection on a ground that is so individual and personal. I myself, am trying to find the beauty in asking the tough questions, finding the possibilities within my own incessant mind. What about you?

Calling all closeted self-learners

It’s been running through my mind since my last post, and I really want to put myself out there and start a discussion. Please, if you take the time to read this, I would love to gather anyone with an open mind, and change my quest for this blog a bit. I have recently been really intrigued by the prospect of creating a network, a network that enables anyone and everyone to explore their own interests and start discussions with others that may have knowledge or expertise, or even interest in said area.

If anyone is the least bit interested or has any ideas on how to set up something like that, I would love any and all input. This is a call to start something that I know could be great, with the right community of free thinkers, I have faith that something uplifting, helpful, and interesting can emerge.

The internet has revolutionized the way we live our lives, why not utilize what we already have and so often take for granted? Why not create connections, conversations, and new opportunities?

I know that there are many platforms that are already being used to continue discussions, but my idea is to create something a bit more close knit and intimate between the people on the other end of the screen.

So, again, if anyone has an idea on how to organize a platform like that I would love to talk to you, and start something new. Feel free to email me at: whynotbyou@gmail.com, or leave a comment on this or any post of mine with contact information.

Changing Seasons

The change from fall to winter always hits me pretty hard. With this year being an election year, it becomes even more draining. Tensions are so high, everything is uncertain, and it’s freezing outside.

I’ve had too many thoughts going through my head, and they get so overwhelming I decide not to pursue any of them. Backwards logic, I know…. But there are so many things I want to say, explain, ask. I just can’t seem to put it into coherent sentences.

I haven’t written in a while, and I wanted to check in. Let everyone know that I’m a little all over the place, and feeling tired from all the chaos that is life but, I am slowly getting my wits about me, and I will hopefully have more frequent updates coming, once I get my crap together that is.

For now, I am actually pretty optimistic about a few things happening in my personal life. I can feel things changing in a positive direction for me, it’s just harder to look at the world and see it going in the right direction, it becomes a large source of anxiety and frustration for me. Thinking about the big picture things always gets me a little bit down. Either way, I’m hoping to break out of this funk soon.

How is everyone else doing with the seasons changing? Are you in a cold climate or warm? Does it affect your mental health at all?

To a new year

I’ve never been one for Birthdays, not my own at least. Whenever this time of year rolls around, I go through the ‘normal’ thought process. I question mortality, my life, and assess what I’ve done in a year.

The truth is though, that I feel somewhat fulfilled with this years progress, even though it’s 2020 the year of absolute shit storms.

It doesn’t seem that I’ve gotten very far on the surface but, I am working towards my dreams, I have gained self-confidence (even if it doesn’t seem like it). Basically, I’ve become a totally different person in a year, I’ve come closer to who I’m meant to be, I’ve let go of a lot of baggage, and I’ve become overall happier. Not to say I don’t have my dark days, not to say that I don’t still get anxious and overwhelmed, and not to say that I’m the perfect image of a stable person. For me though, progress has definitely come.

So I’m not sure if I’ll be super excited when my birthday rolls around next week, it is after all just another day but, I am going to take a moment to be proud of who I’ve become. I’m going to take a moment to visualize what I want for this next year, and I’m going to try pretty hard not to get stuck in thoughts of impending doom, and mortality. I have plenty of other days to think about that, hopefully.

Painting: Works in Progress

Even though I have been utterly overwhelmed, and sometimes overtaken by anxiety, I’ve made it a mission to keep pursuing art. Pushing myself to pass the boundaries of my comfort zone and create. I’ve been dealing with pesky thoughts about my work not being perfect, or even halfway decent at times. However, I want to keep working at it, keeping bringing ideas/sketches to life, and try to enjoy the learning process.

I’ve also been considering making more video content as well. I bought a camera years ago with the intention of making videos, and have yet to try, for fear of judgement. It seems to be the thing holding us all back, doesn’t it? Fear is a bitch I suppose. It’s unfortunate that a lot of the time people like to prove fear right, rather than take control. I will confirm, I am very guilty of letting anxiety get the best of me, letting doubt be my friend, it’s something I’m trying to work on.

Some days are better than others, and I still have a lot of ideas I want to pursue, the commitment floats around my head, waiting to be picked up and taken seriously. Soon.

Dragging Myself

I always find it so funny how our moods can drastically change, for no reason at all.

Yesterday morning, I woke up excited to start the day. I was finishing a painting for a local business, and I actually had a lot of fun with it. So there I was enjoying myself, jamming out to tunes, painting to my hearts’ content. I finally finish the painting I spent 6 hours on, I turn the music off, and my heart sinks.

It isn’t because I was sad to stop painting, it wasn’t because I had anymore music I wanted to listen to. It was just like all of the happiness got sucked out of me in an instant.

Fast forward, going through the motions of the day, my mind rumbling through any and all possible reasons to be upset. Then, making up new qualms and anxieties, overwhelming my mind with so much at once.

Anxious. Tired. Sad.

It was like an incessant loop, that I had no power over. Or, I let myself believe I had no power over it. Man, I get so frustrated just thinking about how betrayed I felt by my own mind. I’d been doing so great, feeling so optimistic and hopeful. All it took was a moment for me to do a complete 180 and feel self-loathing all over again. A whole day wasted to negative thoughts and feelings, all of which I most definitely didn’t ask for.

Well, here’s to a new day, another chance.

Hope. Happiness. Optimism.

Reflecting on the past

While I agree that it doesn’t help to dwell on the past, I’ve found that looking through old journals really helps with developing new ideas, and understanding how you’ve felt in the past. I took the time today to go through some old notebooks and find some entries that elicited emotion. Below, I’ll share from a journal I kept through the summer of 2019, so over a year ago, in the hopes that it will give some insight into my current journey.

When will I grow up, and stop living in daydreams and idle fantasies.

Stubbornly feigning indifference, while bearing the weight of worlds.

These were placed on the inside cover of my notebook along with a poem I chose not to share. I have learned through these passages, I have come to recognize pieces of myself, pieces that I still struggle with, but in some ways have come to love. I dream. I question. I feel deeply.

Wander exceptionally far away from what you know, only there will you find yourself.

This one is still relevant to me today. All of my goals lead to a time where I am able to wander. A time, that will give me the freedom to experience, to learn, and to find myself.

Note to Self:

In order to find _______ .

Adventure is inherently important. Nothing else matters. Finding magic means taking the necessary leap.

Be free, create the world you dream of.

Make your ideal reality.

Here I am, over a year ago, searching, yet not knowing what it is I’m looking for. My mind during this time was similar to what it is now, I still yearn for a sense of freedom that I haven’t found. However, I have come to understand the importance of so many other things. I have come to understand the importance of connection, of family, and of being vulnerable enough to let people in.

Small City

Heightened awareness of status in a bourgeois sense.

Finally finished with college degrees, shopping for polos and pleated skirts.

Waiting eagerly for the chance to wear them to new jobs, holding themselves in a higher esteem than they truly should.

False confidence emitted in hazardous waves.

Unappreciated and well despised by those who walk the streets in rags, by those who have seen cruelty and misfortune in this little city.

Now, this piece holds some true anger. I remember the day I wrote this, I was at a stoplight in the city that I was working in. I was watching people walk by, holding their shopping bags from ritzy stores. At this same crosswalk I saw others walking by, dirty and tired, carrying everything they owned on their backs. It was a long day at work, and I had befriended some of the people that were carrying everything they owned on their backs. I felt for them, for their misfortune, and most of all for how misunderstood they are. I still think that everyone who has the privilege of new things, a hot meal, and a place to sleep, should take the time to get to know, and potentially help, someone less fortunate. However, I no longer feel that I can immediately condemn or judge those who do have more.

Nothing feels familiar, and everything is out of place. Lost in a cascade of emotions, never seeming to make sense. It has taken a long while to understand, and here you are, still looking at some unknown land, with a language that eludes you. It was once your vernacular, and yet, it is foreign.

This passage to me, was all of my feelings of disconnect, of uncertainty. Wondering where to turn, who would listen, who would care. This is still something I struggle with, connection for some reason feels so important, yet so scarce.

I guess this blog is an embodiment of my yearning for similarities in such a vast world. This is a place for me to be me, completely honest and open, forgetting all of the time I spent burying my thoughts. It’s also about gaining the confidence to share passages like these. I hope, if you’ve taken the time to read these, that you can gain something too.

As time passes

Something that has always been a massive cause of anxiety for me, has been feeling that I’m not doing enough. Progress is something that can’t be seen in the day to day, and being like most young adults, that makes me feel like no progress is happening at all.

Trying to take things a day at a time, hoping that living in the present will lead me to a better, more light-hearted future.

Spending less time thinking about what I’m going to do, how I’m going to get somewhere, etc. It has helped keep me from my feelings of hopelessness and anxiety. Life ebbs and flows, things change, some days feel like the world is ending, and some days, it feels like opportunity is all around.

Opportunity to live, to flourish, to be. There are so many quotes out there describing, and explaining life in so few words, but the truth is, there are no words to explain what life is to each individual. I guess the point of it all is for you to decide, for you to find out. That’s what makes life so captivating and inspiring.

Sunny Daze

With fall upon us, I have been taking the extra time to truly enjoy what the beginning of this season has to offer. Fun photo days are something I genuinely look forward to. They always seem to lift my spirits and spark creativity. From searching for a good location, to funny photos, to getting the perfect shot, to getting home and having a drink while looking through all of the pictures from the day. It all has some serious meaning and it makes life more enjoyable.

Yesterday was a beautiful day, the sun was shining, and the fresh air was rejuvenating. Spending the whole day adventuring and embracing my inner model, it was truly one of the best days I’ve had in a long while. Nowadays, everyone is talking about self-love and self-care, mental health days, etc. Being able to take that time to relax and genuinely just have fun, no pressure, no worries. That to me is the greatest form of self-care.

It’s been hard lately with the uncertainty that is the world right now, and quite honestly, the uncertainty that is my life. My dream is to travel, to have fun, to experience, and to love. Yet as a currently unemployed young adult, with a very short resume… I’ve had some bad days. No one prepares you for the harshness of the world, and no one prepares you for a global pandemic, climate change, or any of the other plagues of society. However, I am truly, trying my damnedest, to embrace life and enjoy the present.

I hope you are able to enjoy your own sunny daze.

Below are a few of the bloopers I hold dear.