Tag Archives: inspiration

Secondhand Experience

For several years, I had been bored. Not a whining, restless child’s boredom (although I was not above that) but a dense, blanketing malaise. It seemed to me that there was nothing new to be discovered ever again. Our society was utterly, ruinously derivative (although the word derivative as a criticism is itself derivative). We were the first human beings who would never see anything for the first time. We stare at the wonders of the world, dull-eyed, underwhelmed. Mona Lisa, the Pyramids, the Empire State Building. Jungle animals on attack, ancient icebergs collapsing, volcanoes erupting. I can’t recall a single amazing thing I have seen firsthand that I didn’t immediately reference to a movie or TV show. A fucking commercial. You know the awful singsong of the blasé: Seeeen it. I’ve literally seen it all, and the worst thing, the thing that makes me want to blow my brains out, is: The secondhand experience is always better. The image is crisper, the view is keener, the camera angle and the soundtrack manipulate my emotions in a way reality can’t anymore. I don’t know that we are actually human at this point, those of us who are like most of us, who grew up with TV and movies and now the Internet. If we are betrayed, we know the words to say; when a loved one dies, we know the words to say. If we want to play the stud or the smart-ass or the fool, we know the words to say. We are all working from the same dog-eared script.

It’s a very difficult era in which to be a person, just a real, actual person, instead of a collection of personality traits selected from an endless Automat of characters. 

And if all of us are play-acting, there can be no such thing as a soul mate, because we don’t have genuine souls.

It had gotten to the point where it seemed like nothing matters because I’m not a real person and neither is anyone else.

I would have done anything to feel real again.

~ Gillian Flynn

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Handle With Care

Words…

They’re fake bullets, so why do I feel like I’m bleeding out? ― Jodi Picoult

As I said already before in one of my posts: Even after all these years, words still have the power to hurt me.

I said also that words are like knives. It can only hurt us if it hits the target, and what hurts the most are those that hit closer to home, in other words, the truth.

What I didn’t tell you is: it is not always the case. Sometimes words can hurt us even though they are not true if they come from people who are dear to us and those that we value the opinion of. It hurts knowing they think of us that way regardless of where the truth lies. And often times, at least in my case, I never correct their wrong assumptions. I find it a lost cause. Their minds are already made up. Trying to change their ideas of you is like mopping the floor with the tap wide open or shutting the stable door after the horse has bolted. It is difficult to change one’s (first) impression once it’s formed. Better charge it to experience and walk away. Other people’s opinion of you doesn’t make who you are. It’s a thought, not a fact. It’s a perspective, not the truth. It is disheartening yes but I will never let other people’s opinions define me. I will never give them the pleasure of insulting me. I may shed tears in private because of their ill-intended remarks but I will not crumble before them. Never. I will always hold my head up high and will never let myself be stirred into a fury, losing my dignity in the process. It’s better just to ignore and walk away.

How about you?

Would you defend yourself and your image with tooth and nail?

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insidious

Word I have learned today:

insidious

adjective
proceeding in a gradual, subtle way, but with very harmful effects.
synonym:

stealthysubtlesurreptitioussneakingcunningcraftyMachiavellianartful, guileful, sly wilytrickyslickdeceitfuldeceptivedishonestunderhandbackhandedindirect 

informal: sneak

My ex-husband said to me that I pretend to be intelligent but the truth is I’m stupid really. I think what he meant was I lack the qualities that are mentioned above. Virtues that in my experience most women I know possessed and I seem to be lacking. I never learned to use my gender as a weapon of advantage, like I never learned to sway my hips while walking or say things but mean another. In my world, I say what I mean and mean what I say and I learned to walk with a purpose: getting where I want to be as fast as possible and leave when it is not necessary anymore to stay. I am stupid indeed.

I have nothing to offer to a man.

My ex said that too. According to him I just lay there like a corpse. I told him it takes a real man to make me moan in bed. He didn’t like that. I wonder why.

The truth is I never thought of offering someone anything in any circumstances. Another thing I never learned: to negotiate and barter. Take me as I am or walk away. No hard feelings.

Reminds me of what Rose -an old friend- told me when we were young – not to eat directly from the pot when there is a possibility that someone, especially a (potential) suitor might see me. The person could lose interest when he catches me doing unladylike things. I told her why hide when sooner or later he will learn to know the real me and preferably sooner than later so he could not blame me of pretending and tell me afterward that if he only knew he would not get into this and that. I rather that he will know how I really am in advance so he has time to make up his mind if he is going to venture further with me or run away. Same reason why I don’t string suitors. If I like you I tell you right away so we can spend time doing wonderful things together instead of beating around the bushes pretending, wasting precious time which otherwise we can use to get to know each other better. Likewise when I don’t fancy the person, I will tell him right away too so he could devote his precious time chasing other preys instead of wasting it on me. Fair is fair, right?

Lately, looking back, I sometimes believe that maybe I am indeed stupid, not using my feminity at its best potentials when I could but even if, I don’t know where to begin. I don’t know how to flirt or seduce someone. I don’t know how to twist the truth to my own advantage and I don’t know how to lie for personal gain. I cannot shut up when I supposed to shut up (like don’t criticize your mother-in-law in the front of your husband and don’t antagonize your husband by pointing out his mistakes and don’t voice out other people’s thoughts which otherwise they rather keep for themselves for the fear of rocking the boat etc. etc.) I don’t know how to caress someone’s ego to be liked and be sweet and amenable to please and I don’t know how to be who I am not for popularity. If I don’t know all these, how can I be smart?

Smart people, women, in particular, my ex-boss said know their way in the world. He said this after I refused to attend his 25th wedding anniversary because I didn’t want to wear a long gown. After I refused to go to the sauna with him. After a female colleague cooked him dinner and after I didn’t get into his proposition of being employed by him to take care of his invalid wife on paper but in reality living with them and taking care of him. He fired me but tried to hire me again three weeks later. Funny guy.

I’ve met quite a few who are insidious. I wonder how they can look at themselves in the mirror and believe they are the paradigm of virtues. I admire people who are overly self-confident when clearly there is no reason to be. Like stating on their profiles that they are very attractive while their pictures say otherwise. I know what false modesty means and it is equally unflattering. They say the best part of being beautiful is when one is not aware one got it. That’s when the allure becomes powerful and at its strongest.

Do you believe it?

If you’ve got it, flaunt it they say. It’s a good subject for a debate, but not today. All I know is it is endearing to watch someone who is not aware she or he has a devastating impact on people. Kind of innocent. Kind of sweet. Kind of everything I am not. False modesty aside.

But I’m getting sidetracked again. See what a single word could do to the mind of a person?

I better stop I think.

See you next time.

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How to Stop Envying Other People’s Seemingly Perfect Lives

By Sonia Devine

“The reason we struggle with insecurity is because we compare our behind-the-scenes with everyone else’s highlight reel.” ~Steve Furtick

It’s in our nature to compare ourselves with others. The ability to weigh one situation up against another helps us make decisions and live our lives productively.

The downside is that when you constantly compare your own life with those of other people, you will always come up short.

Over-comparing causes envy. Envy is the feeling or sensation we have when we want to get something that someone else has and we can’t be happy for them when they have it.

Getting stuck in a cycle of envy is just about the best way to ruin your life. Fortunately, there are several ways to deal with envy that will guide you toward happiness and well-being.

Don’t Compare Your Cutting Room Floor With Someone Else’s Highlight Reel

Have you ever seen anybody post an unflattering photo on Facebook? Let’s face it, you rarely read about someone fighting with their spouse, hating their job, or declaring bankruptcy. Most people show you what they want you to see—a highly edited, glossed-up version of their life.

The next time you feel envious about someone else’s life, remember that you’re only looking at part of the story, the part they want you to see.

Think of something that another person has that you want. For example, maybe someone you know is far more popular than you. On the surface, it may appear that they are surrounded with people who look up to them and that they are well-liked and respected.

But in reality, people might have a different view of them behind closed doors. In this case, the actual reality and what we perceive as reality are two very different things.

Even the most enviable lifestyle has downsides. For example, many people covet the glamour and glitz of the rich and famous. But have you ever sat down and thought about what kind of life a famous person has?

Ask yourself if you’d enjoy someone jumping out of a bush and taking a snapshot of you in your grubby tracksuit pants while you’re collecting the newspaper from the front lawn.

There are always two sides to every coin. What you think you see is not necessarily the reality. So the next time you get caught up in envy, always remember that unless you are that person you don’t really have the whole story.

Isn’t It Already Here?

I am by nature a private person, but I wasn’t always that way. In my twenties, I was invited to every party, had scores of friends, and was (in my own mind, at least) funny, clever, and popular.

As the years went by I became more introverted, and not too long ago I started beating myself up for not having many friends. Why wasn’t I popular like other people?

One particular couple that my husband and I love catching up with came to mind. Whenever we wanted to see them, we had to literally book months in advance because they were so busy with other social commitments.

Then I started to really ask myself, what is the essence of what I think popularity will bring me? The answer was simple: I wanted to feel a sense of connection and belonging.

It was at that time I realized that the essence of what I wanted was already here. I have a loving husband, a great family, a couple of good friends who would do anything for me, and plenty of time to do what I want.

I also realized that I would absolutely hate not having a moment to myself; being popular would probably make me pretty miserable.

So the next time you feel as though you’re missing out on something that somebody else has, drill down into the essence of whatever you think that thing would give you and ask yourself, is it already here?

Do You Really Want What They Have?

If you really want to play the comparison game, remember that if you want someone else’s life you have to be willing to do a complete swap; that is, you would have to give up your life as it is and swap over to theirs.

Here’s an exercise that will help you decide if you really want out of your situation and into someone else’s:

When you’re ready, think of someone you know who has the kind of life that you envy. Then take a piece of paper and in the left-hand column write the heading “What I have that they don’t have.”

Then in the right-hand column, write the heading “What they have that I want.” In this column, you are going to make a list of all the things this person has that you want. Write down whatever comes to your mind. For example, do they have a lot of money, a nice house, nice clothes, or the perfect partner?

When you’ve finished doing this, move to the left-hand column. Write down everything that you value in your life. For example, family, friends, pets, and everyone who is important to you.

One caveat: the other person may indeed have friends, family, and pets just like you. But in this case, you’re not so much looking at what they have (i.e.: a dog, a child, a husband), but the unique relationship and connection you have with your pets and loved ones. So remember to write down the names of your family members, friends, and pets.

Be as specific as you can. Get really clear and what you love about your life. It could be something as simple as being able to finish work early on Thursdays so you can go to the gym.

Now its crunch time; you’ll probably find that the list on the left-hand side is much bigger than the list on the right. So ask yourself, is there anything in this list you would be willing to give up in order to have the life that the other person has?

What you’ll likely discover is that everything you have in your list is as valuable as or more valuable than the things that the other person has.

Practice Gratitude

One of the reasons we feel envy is that we often take the good things in our own lives for granted.

The happier you are with your lot in life, the more good things will come to you. Happiness studies show that truly happy people are not necessarily wealthy, powerful, or famous.

They have simply made a choice to be happy by paying attention to the good things around them. Since whatever you focus on will become the inclination of the mind, this makes perfect sense.

Every night before I go to sleep I ask myself the following questions:

  • What do I take for granted in my life?
  • Who are the important people (or animals) in my life?
  • Who is in my corner?
  • What freedoms do I enjoy?
  • What advantages have I been given in life?

This allows me to take stock of what is important and gives me a nice feeling of contentment before I drift off to sleep. Try it for yourself!

Our society has conditioned us to believe that your net worth equates to happiness. Accordingly many people strive to be more, do more, and have more.

But none of those things actually cause any lasting happiness. They are all impermanent and subject to change. Most importantly, they represent other qualities of the heart that can be achieved regardless of net worth.

Ask yourself the question: “What really makes me happy?” Is it actually the money, possessions, or reputation? Or is it freedom, joy, peace, and serenity?

Happiness is the ultimate currency, and there’s no law that says there isn’t enough of that to go around.


Sonia Devine is a qualified professional hypnotherapist who assists people to make positive changes in their lives.

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The Secret Life of Prince Charming

“I used to think that finding the right one was about the man having a list of certain qualities. If he has them, we’d be compatible and happy. Sort of a checkmark system that was a complete failure. But I found out that a healthy relationship isn’t so much about sense of humor or intelligence or attractive. It’s about avoiding partners with harmful traits and personality types. And then it’s about being with a good person. A good person on his own, and a good person with you. Where the space between you feels uncomplicated and happy. A good relationship is where things just work. They work because, whatever the list of qualities, whatever the reason, you happen to be really, really good together.” 

― Deb Caletti

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In The Sea

“Ideas are like fish. If you want to catch little fish, you can stay in the shallow water. But if you want to catch the big fish, you’ve got to go deeper. Down deep, the fish are more powerful and more pure. They’re huge and abstract. And they’re very beautiful.”

― David Lynch

Does the above quote applicable also when looking/hunting/choosing for a potential partner? I heard it before, so many fish in the ocean and to quote a fifteen-year-old boy who thought he knew better he said: She’s not the only pussy walking around. He was, by the way, referring to me, angry because his own brother and first cousin were on the clinch for my attention. But if I read him correctly, he got an adolescent crush on me and probably angry at himself. Those were the days.

Down deep, the fish are more powerful and more pure. Oh, I thought the higher you go up on the social ladder the poorer it gets when it comes to attitude and manners. But then again, Lynch was talking about ideas, not people.

But ideas come from people, and I believe that in order to have depth on anything, the source got to have layers, multiple layers. And layers come from life experience, years of experience. The harder the life you lead, the more colorful and complex the layers become. No wonder most if not all geniuses were tortured souls. All great art comes from pain they say, and history is there to prove it, There is no need to mention names, we all know who they are. The Myth of the Tortured Artist, remember? They say it’s not a myth. Art is a reflection of humanity, and humanity’s greatest virtue is its ability to overcome adversity. Suffering gives insight they claim. What tortured them is what made them great. I can only agree. I write better when I am unhappy and can’t sleep.

Experience and the ability to feel and to know where those feelings are coming from give art authenticity in my opinion. It’s your soul that is out there, no one had been through what you have been through, your stories are solely your own, unique in every way. Your craft is an expression of your personal journey and the bumpier the road, the greater is the experience the deeper is the source of inspiration.

I have lived a thousand lives. No exaggeration. I could write about a million things others could only imagine about. My history and my experience lend truth to my voice as opposed to someone who is writing fictional situations. They say in every book someone writes, there is always a piece of autobiography in it and I believe that. We draw characters and places from our own personal experience. It doesn’t matter if we are writing fiction or not, we based personages and situations on people we know and places we’ve been. There is always a piece of truth in every lie they say. I believe that too. Where else we could get our inspiration but from life itself, right?

With a little bit of imagination or lots of it, we can make ordinary extraordinary and simple to wonderful. All we need is to catch some big fish, and in order to do that; we have to explore bigger and deeper seas and risk drowning. Sink or swim people.

Till next time.

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I Was in an Abusive Relationship & Didn’t Know It.

Do you know the boiling frog story?

If a frog is placed in cold water and the heat is slowly turned up, the frog does not realize that it is in danger—until the water reaches the boiling point, and then it is too late for the frog.

I have been the frog in cold water, with the water slowly heating up.

I’m lucky. I got out before it reached the boiling point.

There is no way I am going back in.

Abuse is not always physical and it is not always obvious. Emotional abuse leaves scars that are silent and hidden.

My experience of verbal and emotional abuse left me feeling worthless and hopeless. My already low self-esteem diminished even further. I spent most days confused about what it was I had actually done wrong. I walked on eggshells, attempting to avoid tension and conflict. I tried to make sense of my relationship; I tried to fix myself. I put on a mask to navigate the outside world.

I retreated further into myself to avoid seeing my reality. I felt off-center. I no longer knew who I actually was.

My experience did not involve black eyes, broken bones or bruises, but what I did experience wounded me on the inside. Most of the damage lay with losing all sense of self.

Wounds have become scars. Occasionally, the scars still bleed.

They are a reminder to call on all I’ve learned since I walked out the door.

To bring myself back to center and trust in myself.

I am healing.

Not only from the years of being in a domestic violence relationship but from my experiences since birth that led me to stay in such a toxic union for so many years. The experiences that led me to believe I was not worthy of love and respect.

My relationship did not begin with my being called a useless bitch, a fat lazy cow and a worthless piece of shit.

If that had been the case, I doubt I would have gone out with him.

He loved me. He whispered words that made me feel cherished and secure. Worthy. Worthiness based on his approval of me. Approval I had never given to myself.

I loved him. We laughed together; I felt comfortable and safe with him.

I did not listen to the quiet voices in my head—the sick butterflies in my body that quivered and tried to make me aware.

No. I was the tough one who proclaimed that if anyone ever hit me I would leave.

Except he never actually hit me.

Pushing someone isn’t hitting.

Besides, I pushed back.

I yelled back. I fought back.

The abuse crept in slowly and stealthily.

It was subtle.

I was in an abusive relationship and didn’t know it.

I was not aware of the depth of the trauma and damage I experienced until months and even years after I left.

My reasoning for all the fighting, for being so desperately unhappy?

“I wasn’t being abused, because I wasn’t being hit.”

My feelings were denied and minimized.

I was told it was all my fault.

I was told I was ungrateful for what was provided.

I was told I did not deserve affection and that I had to earn it.

I was told I did nothing all day.

I was told that I was the one destroying our relationship.

I was told I was useless. I was told I was useless. I was told I was useless.

Over and over and over and over.

And I stayed.

I believed him. I believed his version of the truth.

I stopped fighting back.

I stopped pushing back.

I stopped calling him names.

I became numb to my experience.

Numb to stop the anxiety, despair, and frustration I felt.

Depression was my protection.

There were days my body collapsed when I got out of bed. The physical pain in my feet and legs stopped me from walking. From supporting myself. From facing the day ahead.

I did not trust myself and my inner voice. I stopped listening to any whispers that remained.

I succumbed to what I believed I deserved.

I believed this was how I would live my life forever.

I did not plan to leave this relationship. In the months before I did leave, my thinking had slowly started to shift. There were moments of clarity. Moments of questioning.

I was in counseling, and I believe that this support was the pathway out of my confusion.

I also opened up to a couple of trusted people close to me. I revealed to them the reality of my relationship. Voicing my reality helped me to see it with more clarity.

I approached a women’s refuge for advice. I was fully expecting to be turned away. I thought, “I’m not one of those women who is hit.”

I was not turned away. These two women sat and listened to me. They spoke with me about what a domestic violence relationship was. I opened up, even more, that day. My thinking shifted again.

The facade was starting to crack.

I was using my voice, and I was being heard.

My new life began when I left my relationship. When I finally realized I was living with a man who—still to this day—believes he is entitled to exert power and control over me.

I can still be pulled out of my center and into his reality, but the majority of the time I live with my truth. I live with the knowledge of my own power and freedom.

It has taken every ounce of strength and courage within me to be able to look at myself and the role I played. And I did play a role. My low self-esteem, my lack of self-love, my belief that I did not deserve more than what I was receiving. It took honesty and authenticity to face myself. To bring my healing back to me. To change me. To love me.

I am proud to see my growth in the years since I left my relationship. I am able to recognize when I am being a victim.

I witness myself.

I have owned and taken responsibility for what is in my awareness.

I have learned to set boundaries.

I have learned I cannot always control what happens to me but I am in control of my reaction.

I acknowledge my darkness and my light.

I have discovered my worth.

I recognize my value.

I am compassionate with myself.

I give myself permission to get it wrong.

I forgive myself for the times I did not get it right.

I am learning to trust my truth, my inner voice, my intuition.

I honor my feelings and allow myself space to drop into what I feel.

I continue on my journey of healing.

Most of all, I continue on my journey of learning to love myself—all of me, including my shadows.

I am lucky. I did not become a frog in boiling water. I got out.

Many women don’t.

I hope that in sharing my experience I will give another woman the courage to trust her inner voice.

To question if she is living her reality, or another person’s.

To open up a pathway out of the confusion she feels every single day.

To find the freedom to be happy and live without a knot in her stomach every morning.

To find her voice and share her experiences.

The clarity to see that abuse does not always involve physical violence.

The right to live a life without abuse in any form.

I want you to know that you are worthy and you deserve to live your life without fear and confusion. You deserve respect, love, and kindness.

Your voice matters. Your feelings matter. You matter.

~Lisa Ambrose

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365 Blank Pages

Brad Paisley said:

Tomorrow is the first blank page of a 365-page book. Write a good one.

Fair enough.

But how to do it?

One subject they never teach in any school is how to cope with life.

They never teach us how to be a wife, a mother or how to keep a relationship alive and functioning properly and how to get over heartaches and traumatic experience. They never tell us what to do when everything is falling apart and you have nowhere to go and no one to turn to. In short, for all those mostly unnecessary things they instilled in our heads, they never prepare us for real life and what lies ahead when we’re lucky enough to survive childhood with or without scratches.

In school, they never teach us even the basic on how to deal with obstacles and hurdles of growing up and being an adult.  Worse still, there is no school on this planet one could apply to if one wishes to be educated about life. We have to learn it on our own stumbling and falling.

Good for building a character you might say. That which does not kill us makes us stronger. Wrong! Friedrich Nietzsche. What doesn’t kill us makes us crazy or at the very least, paranoid if not bitter, vindictive even. Once we are burned, we show the scars one way or the other. It will manifest in whatever aspect of character we are lacking strength and influence our choices and decision makings in the future. Those who made the same mistakes over and over again are terrified of leaving familiar water. The devil you know is better than the devil you don’t, right?

Of course, in every rule… you know the drill.

Observe and learn. The best way to learn is from the pros. Easier said than done. Watching people doesn’t always give us a heads up. We tend to think it will not happen to us till it happens. Same as getting old. The youth tend to shrugs off the myths about aging even though the proofs are staring them right on their faces, till it is their turn then suddenly myths become facts and by then it’s too late. You know what I’m talking about… We all been there, being young and thought we are immortal, smarter than our predecessors and a lot, a lot luckier forgetting we are all born terminal and living on borrowed time.

Ah, if we knew then what we know now.

If only they teach us survival skills in school. If only they prepare us for what is going to happen next. If only…

And the way I see it those modern conveniences and technologies don’t help. Today’s generation is accustomed to having what they want with one click and living in virtual realities. How can you expect them to survive in the real world?

Or maybe I’m just getting old and getting nostalgic for yesteryears when people still know how to cook a meal from scratch instead of letting it deliver on their doorstep. When people could function without the aid of a computer and can write a proper letter and send real Christmas cards instead of electronic ones.

Those were the days.

Let’s begin the 365 days by spending time with our loved ones minus the gadgets. Could we still do that?

I wonder if our loved ones want to spend time with us without the buffer of iphones, ipads, and what have you. Do we still have something meaningful to say to each other to begin with?

Somehow I doubt it.

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A New Year Has Tiptoed In

Time has no divisions to mark its passage
there is never a thunder-storm or blare of trumpets to
announce the beginning of a new month or year.

There is nothing magical about the flip of the calendar, but it represents a clean break, a new hope, and a blank canvas.

I cannot wish you …

I cannot wish you good fortune
knowing that good fortune is what you are, while bad fortune is just a mistaken identity

I cannot wish you all the things of earth
since earth itself is yours and that is sufficient, while all the rest will never be enough

I cannot wish you the things you want to see 
when much unseen is also here waiting for your denial of mind that refuses to see 

I cannot wish you strength or courage to conquer the troubles and tribulations of life
because you alone are the master of limits and imaginary lines

I cannot wish you an easy and safe path in all your ventures
safe and easy paths are unworthy of the worthy

I cannot wish you any kind of freedom you may seek
life is the proof of freedom ; seeking is your prison ; expectations are your guards

I cannot wish you any kind of happiness
heart is too blind to be content in the certainty of reality, excellence and immortality of things 

I cannot wish you good health 
the voice within asking ever provoking questions is your health ; fear that silences you is your illness

I cannot wish you anything
as long as life is about being instead of having

Maybe holiday season is just not about wishes and celebration at all
maybe, just maybe, it is just a reminder about the power of state of mind

What else than state of mind can make things look beautiful when in fact they are ugly
what else than state of mind can make things look ugly when in fact they are beautiful

Let the New Year be the year in which we choose to be the masters of the mind and not its slave.

No brooding over old worries, let’s start a new series.
Forget about all the negativities, think of new possibilities.
Here to conquering a new frontier, that’s all I wish in the upcoming new year.

happy-new-year-2015

Compilation of quotes from Goodreads

New Year: A Dialogue

MORTAL:

“The night is cold, the hour is late, the world is bleak and drear;
Who is it knocking at my door?”

THE NEW YEAR:

“I am Good Cheer.”

MORTAL:

“Your voice is strange; I know you not; in shadows dark, I grope.
What seek you here?”

THE NEW YEAR:

“Friend, let me in; my name is Hope.”

MORTAL:

“And mine is Failure; you but mock the life you seek to bless. Pass on.”

THE NEW YEAR:

“Nay, open wide the door; I am Success.”

MORTAL:

“But I am ill and spent with pain; too late has come your wealth. I cannot use it.”

THE NEW YEAR:

“Listen, friend; I am Good Health.”

MORTAL:

“Now, wide I fling my door. Come in, and your fair statements prove.”

THE NEW YEAR:

“But you must open, too, your heart, for I am Love.”

-Ella Wheeler Wilcox

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7 Signs Your Personality Is Intimidating Others

Have you ever suspected that your friends, colleagues, acquaintances, and even close family members are blindsided by the sheer strength of your personality?

If you are the kind of person who knows their own mind, always sees their plans through, and doesn’t believe in following the herd, other people might find you somewhat intimidating!

Do any of these signs sound familiar?

If so, you probably earn the respect of others – but they may also be a little bit scared on occasion!

1. You Read Other People Quickly

Your intuitive abilities are strong, and you form accurate impressions of people within seconds of meeting them.

Dishonest, ignorant, and bigoted people can’t hide their true nature from you – and this makes them nervous.

You aren’t afraid to call out bad behavior when you see it and are quite capable of putting obnoxious individuals in their place.

2. You Get Straight To The Point

Have you often been told that you are “too blunt” or even “too honest”?

If so, your personality might be intimidating to those around you!

Whilst most people like to ease into a conversation with small talk, this isn’t your preferred approach.

You’d much rather focus on big, important, or even abstract issues rather than what you had for lunch, the latest celebrity gossip, or your next-door neighbor’s vacation plans.

3. You Often Find Yourself In The Minority

You don’t conform just to meet the expectations of others, and you don’t go along with their requests if they don’t sit with your values.

Because you pride yourself on being an independent thinker, it’s likely that you are alone in your opinions from time to time.

People with low self-confidence find you intimidating because they can’t understand what it’s like to validate yourself instead of looking to others for approval.

You’ll also be unsurprised to learn that unintelligent people also find it uncomfortable to be around you, because they soon realize that your IQ far exceeds their own.

4. You Don’t Make – Or Accept – Excuses

You don’t whine about your circumstances and you don’t see yourself as a victim, even if everything is collapsing around you.

There is no place in your life for people who moan and complain.

When you set a goal, you pursue it with vigor and do not tolerate laziness and procrastination.

Although you can be tender-hearted and kind, your willpower can make you appear resilient and tough, which can be intimidating.

It’s not that you lack sympathy for those going through a hard time, just that you have no patience for people who would rather wallow in their own misery than take action.

5. You Aren’t Jealous

For you, it doesn’t matter what other people have.

You know that their money, jobs, or status don’t affect your own chances of success, so you don’t waste your time feeling jealous.

When you congratulate someone on their accomplishments, you truly mean it, without a trace of malice or envy.

Your ability to focus on your own goals and destiny can surprise others, particularly if they happen to be envious or bitter themselves.

6. You Love New Opportunities

Lots of people prefer to stay in their comfort zone, but this isn’t an option as far as you’re concerned.

For you, life is about exploring new ideas and making the best of opportunities you have been given.

In fact, you even see problems or setbacks as blessings in disguise!

You aren’t a starry-eyed optimist, but you have an amazing ability to review a situation from multiple perspectives and try several approaches when solving a problem.

What’s more, you aren’t easily discouraged.

If one solution doesn’t work, you just pick yourself back up and try a new tactic.

7. You Find It Hard To Tolerate Stupid People

Your open-minded attitude and capacity for critical thinking means that stupid or ignorant people really get on your nerves.

Perhaps you sometimes catch yourself thinking, “Why don’t they just read a book once in a while?” or “There’s no excuse for being that ignorant!”

Although you are usually polite and patient, you have no desire to spend any more time than is absolutely necessary with those who can’t understand high-level concepts.

Is an intimidating personality a blessing or a curse?

Sometimes, you might scare away potential friends and partners just by being yourself.

On the other hand, those brave enough to stick around and get to know you will come to appreciate your intelligence, honesty, and unique perspective on the world.

Because you are willing to meet lots of new people there’s a good chance that you will find your tribe sooner or later, even if it takes time to find friends who are capable of keeping up with your incredible mind.

Embrace your intimidating personality! Your proactive, strong-willed nature will set you up for success in every area of your life.

-Powerful Mind via Facebook

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Dear Santa

Dear Santa,

Thank you for making last Christmas perfect – but when I asked for a storybook ending, I didn’t quite realize that the magic ends at midnight.

I’m older and colder now, and I’m not quite sure whether or not to believe in you anymore. I believed in happily ever afters and goodbyes that lasted until the next call, but look where we are now. Honestly, all I want for Christmas, is to be okay (am I asking for too much again, like I did when I wished for my parents to kiss like they meant it once more?) I was taught that although miracles happen, it is always wiser to ask for things within reach. I’ll learn to self-soothe, given enough time, I suppose. But this season, I want three simple things :

A blanket fort, to protect me from the monsters in my head
A playlist without memories, so I don’t have to drown my tears in the shower
And my last summer loves to outlast this summer.
You see, I’m still laying the table for two, my answer machine still says we although now there’s only me, and I’ve forgotten what kisses used to taste like before orange and cinnamon became the only flavors I recognize.

I’m not sure how long I can dance alone on Queen while the candle burns lower and lower still. The clock is ticking away and the forty-sixth letter came back unopened, stamped “return to sender” again.
It’s almost midnight, and I want three simple things (but more than anything else, really, I just want to be okay.)

Maybe it’s time to write the forty-seventh letter now.

– Tanvi Deshmukh

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