I want.

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I want to dig deep into the vast recesses my mind. I want swim through the seas of my consciousness. I want to follow the rabbit hole to wherever it may lead me. I want to follow a path that leads to realization. I want to generate more joy and love for myself, those I love, and for the world around me. I want to recognize when I am being lead astray from my values and aspirations. I want to experience what it’s like to be the master of my mind. I want to enjoy the journey. I want to be true to myself and those around me. I want to become a more authentic, instead of one that hides behind a mask of societal norms. I want to know unconditional love. I want to keep improving. I want to what it’s like to truly feel alive.

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Scotch, Soda, & Friendship

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The rekindling of friendships can be a beautiful thing. I went out for a couple drinks, or more specifically scotch & soda, with a friend last night who I have been slowly connecting with more once again. In life its unavoidable that you will drift away from people. We change, others change, we have falling outs, some relationships can become toxic. It is always nice though when two people can grow apart only to grow back together stronger down the road.

This did get us talking about a friendship that he isn’t too sure how to start separating himself from. They have been good friends in the past, but there ideals have now changed. This friend of his also has substance abuse problems. Because of this he tends to be a bad influence. The way my friend goes about separating himself, is usually lying to his friend and making up excuses on why he can’t see him. Because of having to lie, this brings my friend inner turmoil and I’m sure his friend knows that he’s not always being honest.

I too have been in a similar situation. I have a friend who has his struggles with addiction, and I no longer wanted to hang out with him. I went back and forth with what to do. I made up excuses, I lied, and when I did this, it brought with it a slew of unwanted thoughts and emotions. I hadn’t set any boundaries for myself or the friendship. I wasn’t honest with myself, or with my friend. This friend of mine also happened to be a guilt tripper. Believe it or not, guilt tripping is another person manipulating you to do what they want by taking advantage of your emotion. By creating guilt within you, you are more likely to do what the want because you feel obligated. I would usually succumb to this and hang out even if I didn’t want to.

Now don’t get me wrong, guilt tripping doesn’t make my friend or anyone else that does it a bad person. This is usually a subconscious action developed over time to get what they want, and they really aren’t always consciously aware that they’re even doing it. However, I’m sure there are many who are very aware of what they’re doing. Anyway, one day I decided enough was enough. I was sick of lying and being dishonest with myself and my friend. I called him out on his guilt tripping ,and believe or not, he hasn’t done it too me since. Because of this, I gained more courage to just be honest. If I didn’t want to hang out, I would tell him that, and he respected my decision. Then some days I did find that I wanted to see him. Because of the honesty I had with myself and with him, the friendship had more room to be just that, a friendship, not an obligation.

Over time I realized how much our friendship does mean to me. And he is now getting help for his problems and for that I am very proud. I guess what I’m trying to get at, is don’t just abandon someone who you don’t see eye to eye with, or who are taking part in things that don’t align with your values. Of course there are relationships that really are toxic that can also lead to violence.  In these circumstances you should get away before more harm can be done. If you can’t do it alone, find help.

Set boundaries for yourself and for your relationships. By doing so you can build respect not only for yourself, but from those around you as well.

 

 

 

Choices..

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What is life but an accumulation of the choices that we make? All the choices that you have made up until this point are what brought you to where you are standing now. Sure there is much that is out of your control, but a vast majority of why we feel the way we do, where we are, and what we are doing with ourselves, comes from the choices we make each day. Most the the choices we make however go mostly unnoticed. We work so much from the subconscious mind that we really aren’t consciously aware of most of the choices we make. We just kinda zoom around on autopilot making the same choices every day based on the habits and routines we have established. Some of them are not always the best choices either.. Smoking a cigarette with your coffee in the morning. Drinking a few redbulls throughout the day to give you that extra edge. Getting fast food for lunch because you chose not to go shopping last night. Hitting the snooze 15 times until you have no choice but to burst out of bed and run around like a manic until you’ve done the bare minimum just to get your ass out the door! The more we unconsciously make daily choices, the worse we could potentially be off. The worst part of it is, the more you do them, the easier and more unconscious they get, in turn becoming that much harder to break. Lucky enough for us, the reverse of this is also true. The more aware we are of the choices we make, the better those choices become. Over time, making better choices becomes habitual, and something rooted in the subconscious.

In my experience I have found that just becoming aware of a habit or unpreferred choice, gets you halfway to no longer making it. It’s so easy to get caught up in the bustle of this crazy world, thinking about where you want to be five years from now, what you should be doing with yourself, what Kanye is saying on twitter, what everyone else is thinking about you, different things that you will be doing at different times, but not right now. What you really should be focusing on are the choices you are making at this very moment. We don’t realize that most of what we want to attain doesn’t come in an instant once you’ve done or realized something. It is the outcome of constantly applied effort that eventually takes you to the place you want to be. So your focus should really be on the choices you make in each moment. Will this choice take me closer to the place I want to be? Is this actually keeping me from doing something I need/want to be doing? If I don’t make better choices that effect my health now, how am I going to look and feel like I’ve always wanted to?

I will tell you that changing any aspect of yourself is never easy and there will always be resistance. Just be patient and persistent. It may not seem like it at times, but there is a part of you that always knows what you truly want. There is also a part of you that knows what choice you ‘should’ make. Unfortunately the right choice is not always the easy choice, and we love taking the path of least resistance… I urge you to really take a look at your life and ask yourself if you are where you want to be. If there are certain tasks you have chosen not to do because of the challenge or struggle they will bring. Your life isn’t going to change over night. Making the right choice now will not only benefit you in the future, but also in the present moment. Knowing you are moving forward and in alignment with your values is a great feeling.

Your life really is a sum of all the choices you have made in your past. Good, bad, conscious, or unconscious. We aren’t always going to make the best or right choice. Just always remember this one thing, you always have the ability to choose.