Proof, Lists, and Gratitude!

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Dining in at Proof at Gallery Place with Tirone!

January 18th, 2017

Take 6. I’ve begun to write this entry several times in multiple directions, however I can’t really pin down what I really want to talk about. Of course, a lot has happened over these past few months – but mostly personal things.

So I’ll make a list of some of the things I love in the world.

  1. Photographing people in their truly candid and quirky moments. I get this inspiration from that scene in Lilo & Stitch when she goes to the beach and we see all of her polaroid pictures of the messy, unposed everyday, normal people.
  2. Pay-it-forward. I love people who do nice deeds like pay for the person behind them or go out of their way to do something nice for no absolute reason. The other day, this guy parked his car in the middle of ongoing traffic in order to pick something up on the street for a homeless guy in a wheelchair. I’m sure he knew cars behind him were probably confused and annoyed, but it was very heartwarming to see.
  3. Pizza Stop. It’s this pizza parlor near my house on Bel Pre Road. It’s a family-owned parlor, and has bomb ass pizzas, subs, sandwiches, and a lot more items. I want to say it’s kind of a hole in the wall type of restaurant, but I feel like that’s just a personal opinion since my brother still goes out of his way to by Papa John’s. Either way, it’s a blessing in disguise hidden in the corner of a small shopping center!
  4. Ted Talks. Any time I feel down, depressed, or unmotivated, I find myself watching plenty of Ted Talks about self-confidence and vulnerability, just inspirational and motivational speeches that help me remember how nobody’s perfect and there’s always a way to become better… or at least think better about the world around you.
  5. Reading. As much as I hate having reading assignments for school and having to read studies and articles, I actually find myself somewhat intrigued in everything that I read and I definitely learn something new everyday. I’ve learned to think more critically and become more aware about the world around me. Although it is a dread to be somewhat “forced” to read some of these things, it’s more of a blessing in disguise in the case that I am ultimately gaining knowledge. Don’t get me wrong though, I do read a lot on my own time as well and I love it. And for those who don’t read, knowledge truly is power. It also improves my writing by a whole lot!
  6. Having a home with a functional shower and toilet. Okay, I know this one sounds weird, but I take multiple showers and baths daily, especially after I do my number 2. That’s a lot of water. I have an OCD of being clean! I know that I am abusive of having a functional bath or shower, but I am very aware that it is a privilege. It’s a simple thing to be thankful for, but throughout my travels to Cambodia, and other third world countries in Southeast Asia a few years ago, my eyes were open to the types of bathrooms they had… Public restrooms on the side of the country road were ill-maintained and had dirt and mud everywhere. There were no toilet paper in any “stalls”, but they provided buckets in tubs of water next to the toilet with which you were supposed to rinse your genitals with. I had no idea where they filled the water from and it did not look remotely sanitary, so we brought our own toilet paper to the restrooms. The actual toilets were holes in the ground that you would have had to squat over and do your business in… I know there are people there who use these types of restrooms everyday, so having a nice bathroom here in Maryland is definitely something I truly find gratitude in.
  7. Friends. Good friends. Friends who understand that you have a busy schedule and sometimes text back hours later. Friends who make an effort to make plans and see you during holidays and weekends. Friends who always take you back after you get lost in another crowd. Friends whom you can tell anything, and you never smell a hint of judgment coming off of them. Those are the friends I will keep close in my heart forever.

I’m sure I have a lot more but I’m also pretty sure I’ve spent a good 2 hours on this post, so I think I’ll end it here. I create a lot of these lists about things that I am grateful for, and it has honestly helped me see the brighter side of everything and helped me note a lot of silver linings. So for anyone reading this, if you’re ever having a bad day, just take some time to sit down for a good 10 minutes and write down at least 5 things you are grateful for… and really internalize that gratitude. I know it may sound stupid at first, but the more consistent you are with it, the more it’ll positively affect your psychology… And I can vouch for that.

A Downward Spiral

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An irrelevant photo of a bank in Georgetown, DC

As my network expands, I realize that a lot of negative and positive interactions will come with it. Friends will come and go. Your heart will be broken, and people you thought were true to you, instead may cut you off without telling you. And there’s really nothing that you can control. But if you stay true to yourself, if you stay true to your good intentions, better things will come your way and you’ll naturally attract people who were meant to be there for you… and at the end of the day, you’ll know for sure who your real friends are.

So since I love lists so much, here are a few things to remember for when you feel like the world is pummeling you down into a pit, like I’ve been feeling this whole entire week.

  1. True friends will always be there for you no matter what at the end of the day
  2. True friends don’t make assumptions and preconceived ideas of you based on what they heard. Instead, they would make their own based on their interactions with you
  3. People will say things about you that are untrue. It’s life.
  4. If you don’t feel like you have anyone, your family will always love you. Family will be there for you no matter what.
  5. If you’ve done wrong, realize that you’ve done wrong. No more beating yourself up for it. Pick yourself up and learn from that mistake. You, in yourself, will know that you are better.
  6. Don’t chase after people!!
  7. “Don’t waste your time with explanations. People only hear what they want to hear.” – Paul Coelho
  8. Be true to yourself and don’t force a friendship or relationship. Friendship is a two way street.
  9. Don’t pay attention to the negatives of what people say. It may hurt. But don’t counter that with more negativity. Instead, encapsulate yourself with positive people who make your life happier.
  10. Don’t take things so personally. Life is short. And people will be people.
  11. People have opinions. Opinions are natural.
  12. Not 100% of people will like you. It’s not your fault. It would be unreal if they did.
  13. Keep your head up. It’s not the end of the world. Out of 20 people who hate you, there are 80 more who love you.

Living The Journey

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Thank you to my dear friend, Shawn, for taking me out to the city and being my muse for the night. 10.16.16

Moving on.

Moving on hasn’t always been easy for me, but it is a skill essential to have if you’re going to mature. I am currently maturing into the woman I desire to become – strong, independent, detached, and always moving on… yet I don’t think that there will be an end to maturity. There is no end result of being a person. There is no “finally I’m here”.

Life is ever-changing and even when you’re dead, it still doesn’t end there. There was a quote in this incredible book (called Don’t Sweat The Small Stuff… And It’s All Small Stuff… 10/10 recommend) that enlightened me to the fact that even when we’re dead, we will all still have unfinished business. And you know who’s going to finish that business? Other people! It says that there is no destination… there is only a journey. So here’s to the folks who don’t know where you’re going or where you’ll end up, to the folks who are so incredibly terrified of what path they want or need to take, and are confused in figuring out just how they’re going to get there (like I have been for these past few years): You are on a road to somewhere significant, so stop stressing out so much because no matter where life takes you, life will take you… and there is no right or wrong. There is only an acceptance or a rejection. But regardless, this path that you are on is the path you are meant to be on. And the only advice that I will give to absolutely anybody is to not think so much about the circumstances you are in, but to think about how you react to the circumstances you are put in. Life is amazing; the difference between a good and a bad one is your perspective of it.

So take it from me… feel the fear and negativity, and embrace it for it is a natural part of life… Then move on and keep enjoying the ride. You deserve to be happy.

What Makes A Person Attractive

 

 

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Over the years, I’ve had the opportunity to meet some great people in my life. Here are some of the best qualities I’ve picked out of some of my favorite people

  • The way your belly sticks out after you’ve just eaten a meal and you’re not trying to look good, but you do anyways
  • The way your face lights up and your body swings into full motion when you’re telling a story
  • The ambition in your eyes and the power in your step when you really want something
  • How although when 7 things go wrong, you’re still looking up because of that 8th thing that went right
  • The natural way your words flow out of your mouth and you can go on and on about something you’re passionate about, regardless of what others might think
  • Your extremely ugly laugh, but it’s beautiful nonetheless because it remarks genuine happiness
  • How frantic you can get when 2 strands of hair fall out of place
  • The way you express your opinions unapologetically
  • When you offer to go out of your way to do something for someone just to make their life easier
  • Your smile that never rests
  • The way when someone compliments you, you lose all your words and can’t stop smiling
  • Your favorite past times, like blogging and dancing and singing and exercising
  • How you’re very understanding when I don’t call for a week because you understand that life can get hectic.
  • When you pay for your friends, not because you expect anything in return, but because you want to

Beauty isn’t always the way a person looks. I find beauty in the way people live their life on a day to day basis, how they react to things, their personal mannerisms. Beauty is more than just skin deep.