Back from the dead

Surprise! It’s been about three months since my last post, y’all. I don’t have a legitimate excuse for why I haven’t been writing, other than plain and pure laziness. There’s no use in trying to put it any different: I’ve been lazy, not just for the past few months but for the past two decades of my life, probably. I recently identified laziness as the source for many dysfunctional patterns of thinking. It’s a constant battle, but I’ve begun to conquer this pesky demon.

I once held a bit of spring in my hand

Here’s what I’ve realized: it’s a lot easier to throw your hands up in helpless defeat than admit the fact you could have put in a better effort.

When we forfeit our ability to act, we can easily blame everything and everyone else for our current misfortunes. The responsibility is taken off ourselves, and any feelings of guilt, shame, and frustration are held at bay. However, those things still lurk in our subconscious, because the wiser part of ourself knows better. We know that only we are responsible for how we feel and what we do. It’s a painful thing to realize, but I think it can also be extremely empowering. I’d like to share a few ideas around this that are quickly becoming second nature to me:

We can control much of our daily lives.
While it’s tempting to always focus on “the future” or “the past” with longing, regret, and anxiety, I’ve realized that it’s more logical to focus on creating a more desirable daily life. For example, I’ve recently given my mornings a makeover, dedicating at least 15 minutes for self-care and spirituality. This is within my control! Designing a more ideal daily life is a far less daunting task than trying to improve your life as a monolithic whole.

Time and attention are precious commodities.
I’ve tried to be more mindful and aware of what I choose to give my time and attention to, because I’ve realized that, along with information and knowledge, these are some of the most valuable things in existence. There are too many useless and upsetting things that demand our most precious resources and it’s essential to take back the power and decide how and where you want to allocate them.

Gratitude is one of the best frequencies to emit.
I believe that when you choose to be grateful for something, magic happens. You can transmute bad experiences into lessons that make you a better person. You can acknowledge the goodness in your life and attract even better things. No matter what you believe about the universe and higher powers, there’s no harm in giving thanks. I have found that it feels really good to be grateful.

So, that’s about it for now. I may or may not be bursting with inspiration at the moment, thrilled at the idea of sharing everything with anyone who’ll listen, but I won’t make promises of consistency. Three months is a long time not to write – all I’ll say is I hope never to repeat such an absence. Stay tuned!!

xx
ree

Dreaming of Caterpillars | tiny messengers among us

Some months ago, I was in the midst of a self-growth journey that involved me crossing sea and ocean and living with upwards to twenty-five cats. It’s a long story that I’ll get more into later, but one early Spring night I had the most unusual dream.

I saw a tall oak tree before me, and winding endlessly around it was a massive, hairy, yellow caterpillar. It was a striking image that roused me right out of my sleep. When I managed to get a signal on my cell phone later that day, I turned on my internet data and immediately Googled the symbology behind caterpillars.

dewdropped

I usually don’t put too much stock into those dictionaries that tell you what your dreams represent. I sort of believe that dreams are beyond meaning, and that to analyze one logically is paradoxical to the experience. However, what I read about caterpillars on various websites (some of which looked like they hadn’t been updated since the advent of the internet) resonated with me anyhow, so I’ll share it with you now:

Caterpillars, and butterflies for that matter, are powerful symbols of growth, change, and metamorphosis. Since caterpillars eventually become butterflies, the appearance of a giant one is an anomaly or paradox. To my waking self, it signified a thing in my life, whether it was a mindset, a belief, a relationship, or habit that needed to metamorphosize before it became something destructive.

It’s funny, because almost every time I see a little caterpillar crawling up a tree or through the grass, I think back on that alarming dream. I remind myself that, like my many-legged friends, I still have a lot of growing to do.

TTFN!

xx
ree

Being real with yourself: What to do when you realize you aren’t a very good person

“In general, people are not drawn to perfection in others. People are drawn to shared interests, shared problems, and an individual’s life energy. Humans connect with humans. Hiding one’s humanity to project an image of perfection makes a person vague, slippery, lifeless, and uninteresting.”

Robert Glover

*******

Throughout my life, I always thought of myself as a virtuous person with high morals. I had a bad habit of looking down on others to make myself feel good about being good. I used to only be able to percieve myself as a victim of others’ cruelty and carelessness, as if I were “too good” for this world. If someone asked me how my childhood went, I’d be sure to mention the racist bullying I experienced and to curse the town I grew up in for not being evolved enough. It would have never in a million years occurred to me that I could have been someone’s bully; I would be offended at the suggestion.

me being rather stupid

Nowadays, I have what I like to think is a more realistic attitude. Mistaking myself as being above others has been one of the biggest errors of my life. Only now am I beginning to realize what a truly mediocre and even lousy person I am most of the time. This hasn’t been easy to swallow, but I’m becoming alright with it. Here’s my reasoning:

I take a bit of comfort in knowing that I’m not perfect and never have been. I think perfectionism is an illness that keeps us from being real with ourselves and others. Of course, I still try to work on myself and reach new insights, but I no longer delude myself into believing I’m on a righteous moral path that excludes the majority of people. That’s a crappy attitude to have, in my opinion. It feels better to admit that I’m not above anyone. Because, in the same sense, nobody is above me. We’re all just trying to be good.

My advice for anyone who stumbles across this unpleasant truth is to forgive yourself, forgive others, and do your best to withhold judgement. Judgement of ourselves and others can be useful but it can also make us sick. I’ll be sharing my thoughts on this topic more later. For now, realize that judgement doesn’t need to be hurled at everything. It’s possible to sit with your own judgemental thoughts and keep them to yourself, meditating on their usefulness.

TTFN!

xx
ree

how to fall in love with yourself in 3 easy steps

sněhurka

Life is hard to stomach when you’re not your own friend. It’s much sweeter, thrilling, and more meaningful when you adore yourself. After all, you’re with yourself 24/7, and will be for the rest of your life (and possibly after). It’s a worthy endeavor to work on loving yourself! Self-Love is a pretty easy principle to understand but a difficult one to embody. It’s tempting to loathe your own existence, especially when it’s so normalized in today’s millenial culture, in which death is desired and it’s funny but also sad and infuriating.

I say forget self-hatred and to hell with self-pity. Commit to self-love. You deserve you be deep in love with yourself and now’s the time to start falling. This is about you. You are worth committing to. It’s not going to be instantenous, and as I’m writing this I’m still learning, but here are a few things that can help you along:

  1. Observe cats.

    Cats are interesting to learn from because they exude unadulterated confidence and are supreme at stepping into and radiating self-love. Watch how they care for and carry themselves, and honestly, take mental notes. Cats are good at this stuff.

  2. Embrace failure.

    I challenge you to challenge yourself to make a mistake. Give yourself enough room to fail at something, small or big, and when it happens, surrender. Sit with that feeling of failure and then let go of it. Notice that you’re still alive and life is moving on. When you eliminate judgement of yourself, you move away from fear and closer to love.

  3. Add lemon to your water

    This is honestly just something simple you can do that makes you feel like a classy supermodel.

There you have it, folks. A simple pathway towards the gift of self-love has been paved for you!

Obviously, I’m kidding: there’s no easy one-size-fits-all way towards an optimal relationship with yourself. In fact, I’m not an authority to instruct others on how to get there because I’m not quite there myself! However, the point I wish to highlight is that self-love is an important thing to put your time and energy into. It’s a personal decision you have to make and commit to seriously. The more insight I gain on the topic, the more I’ll be able to share. Cheers!

xx
ree