On Moving On…

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I don’t remember much of last winter. I was too buried in grief colder than any squall. The sharp bite of bitter wind was a welcome distraction from the sickness of my heart.

I put all the things he gave me in the back of my closet, not brave enough to throw them in the trash but not bold enough to keep them around either. Like all bad memories, I hoped they would just fade away.

I found things enough to keep me busy during the days, but the nights were filled with inescapable loops of all the things I could have done better. Of all the things I might have done wrong.

I don’t remember the first day after January 7th that I didn’t see his face every time I closed my eyes, but it must have come. Yes, it must have. Because the sick sinking feeling in my chest now feels like a faded picture.

I grasped for anything that might save me. Desperately, I entered entropy and let the world devour me with new experiences. And yet only within myself did I finally find healing.

For a late blooming flower, I found that each bruise he gave me wilted my tender petals. But those scars will grow a stronger bud come spring. Every beautiful rose wonts to be plucked. And every summer they bloom again.

Moving on is all about compartmentalizing. The pain never goes away. You just box it up and bury it somewhere in your mind and try to think of better things to come.

Wishing stops working after a while, when you realize that people don’t work like shooting stars. They don’t fall on command, and they have pasts that they can never outrun.

I walked into something karmic, and fuck that’s unfortunate, because you were the start of my journey, and I was only a distraction from yours.

Sometimes I remember the way he rolled his eyes while I drove us home one December night, and in that moment I knew there was no saving this. And it took all my strength of will not to burst into tears as we ate our blue cheese burgers while we tried to think of something, anything to talk about.


Here’s some prose from last winter, about my broken heart and learning to move on after that.

Bad things happen in life, but we shouldn’t view those as negatives. We learn much more from pain than we do from success. And sometimes a broken heart is just what we need in order to transform our lives into everything we’ve ever dreamed of. So thank those who have taught you the tough lessons, and pray that they someday find the healing they need as well. Forgive them, and find peace.

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Take care, and don’t forget to take your medications!

Kat 

 

Gift Guide For When You Have No Idea What To Buy Them

Gifts are great! Gifts are even better when you know what to get someone, when you have that really specific thing that you just know they are going to love. But what happens when you have no damn idea what to buy them? You could get them a candle. Or some…shower gel or something else that is weirdly intimate. WASH YOUR BODY WITH THIS, YOU WILL SMELL LIKE ORANGES. YES I AM YOUR COWORKER. YES I WILL BE SNIFFING YOU TO SEE IF YOU USED MY GIFT. Or you can keep reading and discover a few gift ideas that you may not have considered.

  1. Flowers/plants/seeds
    1. This is something that isn’t going to sit around the house collecting dust. Gardening is a hobby that, if the gift-ee is already well accustomed to, will bring them a new thrill being able to plant and grow a new addition to their garden, and if the gift-ee has never tried gardening before, this present is a wonderful gateway into a new hobby. So you get the thrill of starting a new hobby, and also the excitement of planting something organic that is good for the environment!
  2. honey
    1. Honey is a great gift to give, especially if you are able to find some local or small business to purchase your delicious honey from. Not only are you supporting local bee keepers, but you also get to indulge in one of the sweets that nature provides. And the good thing about his? After it’s enjoyed, it doesn’t linger. You can repurpose the container (to perhaps start growing your new garden, mentioned above!) or recycle it!
  3. tea
    1. What goes beautifully with honey? A good tea! Again, it would be super cool to be able to find a small business to buy from, but one of my favorite teas is Twinings of the UK. (Cool fact, my mom met Mr. Twinings at Epcot and asked him “so have you been in business long?” And his very British response was “oh yes, for nearly the last three hundred years”). If you are a fan of the zodiac, you can find teas to correspond to your gift-ees astrological sign, each blended beautiful to fit the sign.
  4. handmade crafts
    1. Do you knit in your free time? Cross stitch? Make pottery? The time and effort put into a handmade craft gift are always appreciated by your loved ones. What would the holidays be without being forced to wear around Aunt Kathy’s first attempt at a sweater? Sure, it’s two sizes two small and has holes in the armpits, but she really really tried. And in a way, it’s kind of cute, and definitely warm. A little scratchy, but…you get the idea. It’s the thought that matters, and handmade crafts are always high up on the list of thoughtful.
  5. libations
    1. Stumped as to what to get someone? Really truly stumped? Are they recovering addicts? No? Sometimes, the best choice for a non-material present is a good bottle of wine. Don’t know much about wine? That’s ok! Just buy one with a cool label. These days there are all sorts of cool indie labels. You are sure to be able to find one to fit everyone you care about. Wine is also one of those things that, once it’s used, it’s gone. It doesn’t take up space. And if they are recovering addictions? Get them the ingredients for a virgin cocktail. Or a fun mix for hot chocolate. The possibilities are endless.
  6. charcuterie essentials
    1. This is one of my favorites, because I like food. I like salty food. I like food you can eat with a good bottle of wine. Enter, the charcuterie tray. You can easily piece together the essentials based on your gift-ees preferred tastes. Vegetarian? A fine hummus and some pretzel chips, along with some jarred olives and jams would do nicely. Carnivorous? Spicy pepperoni and a good salty cheese will go nicely with some jarred olives and jams too. You can eat this gift together with them. How delightful! And again, when it’s thoroughly enjoyed, it’s gone. No remnants of materialism that never gets used or appreciated. (You can even get really fancy and throw in some figs, dates, nuts, or anything else you can think of! As long as it follows the traditional ease of the charcuterie spread)
  7. Baked goods
    1. I learned how to differentiate the spelling of dessert from desert by remembering that with dessert, you always want more of it, therefore there are two S’s. And that is very true! Everyone loves dessert! If you have a knack for baking, I’m sure your friends would love a good cupcake or brownie tray. Just don’t mistakenly give them your batch of “special” goodies. And hello, who doesn’t love Christmas cookies?
  8. a donation to their favorite organization
    1. This one is really cool. Do you know if they are passionate about a certain cause? Are they humanitarians at heart? Do they love animals or helping those in need? Why not talk to them and see what organizations or foundations they feel passionately about? Not only will it give you an opportunity to get to know them even better, but you can help support a cause they care about.
  9. favor vouchers
    1. I used to do this when I was a kid. I would give my mom “favor vouchers” that she could cash in at any time. Things in the packet could include back rubs, cleaning, chores, cooking dinner, making dessert, going grocery shopping, painting their nails, or hugs! With this gift idea, you can decorate the packet however you want, with bright colorful crayons, watercolor, “cut here” dotted lines so they can “cash them in”, and many other options!
  10. artwork or a story
    1. If you are a creative person, I’m sure your loved ones really appreciate the things you can create. Therefore, a perfect low cost gift could be something artistic. Whether you are a painter, a sculptor, a jewelry maker, or a writer, there are endless gift possibilities. I can say there would be nothing I would cherish more than receiving a story for the holidays. Especially if it was tailored to me, like “how I would be described in a book”. So really get creative with this! Give them something one of a kind that they will love just as much as they love you.
  11. An experience
    1. Some of the best things in life are experiences. Instead of getting someone a candle, why not take them to a workshop or class on rock climbing, or story telling, or painting. Take them to a museum, or spend the day at the library hunting through the stacks for new and interesting books to read, pack a lunch and go to a park to enjoy a beautiful day of sunshine and fresh air and freezing cold snow. Memories are much better than materialistic things that might have served to make them happy at one point but soon fall into disuse. Memories are things they can keep forever.
  12. Used books
    1. I like this idea because, yes a book is something that sticks around for a while, but it doesn’t have to be. After you finish a book, unless you really really liked it, you can give it back to the used book store where it came from for someone else to enjoy. And buying used not only supports local businesses, but it also discourages the continued production of materialism. I think there’s something really magical about reading a used book anyways. Especially really really old books that have sat on so many bookshelves before yours. It’s enough to get your imagination going! Not to mention that buying used is much cheaper, so you can buy more books for the same cost as a new one. Who wouldn’t love that?
  13. A blank journal
    1. As opposed to a journal that is already filled…obviously. A journal is great because they can use it for so many different things. No matter what type of person they are or what they are into, everyone can use a nice new journal. Unless of course they are a dragon and already have a hoard of unused notebooks. In which case, let’s not feed that terrible addiction. Cheers?

That’s all for todays post! Leave your comments down below if you have any other suggestions for gift ideas. Or, contrariwise, comment with something you really really hope you get this year for the holidays! Wishlist shares are always fun.

Take Care, and don’t forget to take your medications!

Hurt People, Stop Hurting People — Mommy 2 the Princess

I know we have all heard the saying that hurt people, hurt people. You hear this from so many people. You see it on social media, people are blogging about it. People are even writing books about it. It is almost as if we are giving people a pass to hurt others just because they […]

via Hurt People, Stop Hurting People — Mommy 2 the Princess

Daphne’ Danielle writes a wonderful article about forgiveness, and the repurcussions of living with the pain of being hurt, and how it hurts others in turn. It is so important that we learn to forgive those who hurt us, so that we do not unintentionally hurt someone else with those wounds we carry with us.

As discussed in my post, Forgive Yourself, you will only hurt yourself and others by holding onto that pain. It is important to forgive others, and also yourself to fully embrace the path of healing.

Daphne’s post is full of wisdom. Go take a read, and give her page a follow!


 

Take care, and don’t forget to take your medications.

For Those Afraid Of Love

It’s all fun and games until they like you back, huh?

It seems a little counterproductive, right? You like someone, and yet feel sick to your stomach when they like you back. Why is that? Psychologists would say it’s due to a past trauma that has changed the way you view your interpersonal relationships in life. But not everyone has suffered trauma like that, so why do we sometimes suffer from feelings of repulsion and fear when someone shows interest in us?

You Fear Losing Your Autonomy

This is the big #1. I firmly believe that 9 times out of 10, this is the case. Autonomy is a powerful thing, especially in the age of the internet where being self centered means productivity means success means survival. It’s not entirely your fault. Look at the culture around you. We are encouraged to engage in frivolous flirting, casual sex, and shallow relationships. It seems that these days there are very few people who actually want to commit in a serious way. Well, there are people who want to commit, but, well…that’s why we’re here.

With technology advancing, we are being led to believe that dating is getting easier. Just go on an app like Tinder or Bumble, strike up a conversation, and meet the man of a lifetime. Or at least a night. These apps seldom encourage real interaction. Talking to someone through texting isn’t the same as sitting across from them, feeling their energy, hearing the tone of their voice, and seeing the slight dilation in their pupils. These things speak louder than any text message, because texts can be constructed. How long does it take you to write out a text message? How many times do you hit backspace? We are creating a false persona when we interact on the internet, an ego, if you will. An ego that grows in the most unhealthy way into something messy and confusing and easily hurt. Nothing substitutes real interaction with another human being. Just because they “like” something on your social media doesn’t mean anything. Do you know how easy it is to hit a “like” button? Hell, he could smash the “like” button while simultaneously smashing his ex at 2AM on a Friday night.

But I digress.

Autonomy is so precious to humans. It’s our individuality in an age where everyone seems to be on a special path of destiny. Instead of just working in a shop, having a family, and being, we are convinced that there is some dream out there that we should be chasing. And chasing a dream leaves little time for entertaining a real relationship. We often think our dreams are more important than other people, that we are more important. How pompous! No one is better than anyone else. No one is so special that they can’t carry on a decent interaction with another human being. But being in a relationship means you have to worry about all the boring shit like who has to buy the toothpaste. No one wants to deal with that. They only want a whirlwind romance full of steamy kink-fests and Hollywood banter. We were fed this narrative for so long that we have forgotten what real romance looks like. Real love isn’t Mr. Right. It’s Mr. Right Now.

Being with someone doesn’t mean you will lose your independence. You still have all your own likes, all your own hobbies. You don’t have to meld into the “we” monster. You know, like those girls on tv that always say things like “we are going to redecorate”, “we thought that was so funny”, and “what do we want to eat for dinner”. You can still hang out with your own group of friends. Where did we get this idea that being in a committed relationship means losing ourselves? If you lose yourself, chances are that is a very unhealthy relationship and you should run. Fast.

You Fear Being Vulnerable

Being vulnerable means opening up your beating heart, handing someone a lemon, and trusting they aren’t going to juice you. Who wants to willingly put themselves in that position? That is why most people are more attracted to relationships that they subconsciously know will fail. It’s much easier to screw someone’s brains out and be gone before dawn than it is to share your deepest darkest secrets with them. Sex does not a relationship make. Only vulnerability can make that distinction. When we allow our innermost feelings to be exposed, we open ourselves to pain. That can be a scary thing.

And I firmly believe in every relationship, there is always someone who cares more than the other. There is the one who innately cares, and the one that chooses to care. If you are the one who feels they innately care for the other, chances are good you’re the one who’s going to get hurt. If you’re the one who chooses to care, it’s usually you that will end up hurting the other person. If you choose to love someone, I firmly believe you also have a responsibility to not fucking hurt that person by being dishonest, shady, or dismissive.

It takes a lot of courage to be open about how you’re feeling. Appreciate their courage in telling you, and respect that. (I also have a theory that in D/s relationships, the submissive is usually the innate lover, while the Dom is usually the chooser, as submissives are often more open with their feelings, the ones who do the asking, the ones who lead the Dom. Because if you think the Dom is the one in control in a D/s relationship, you are sorely mistaken. But that is a topic for another post)

I think a lot of relationships fail because neither party wants to be the vulnerable one. Neither wants to be the one who gets hurt by sharing their feelings or saying “I love you” first.

Sometimes Commitment Means Sacrifice

We all know you’d rather sit there eating Doritos and watching episodes of The Office on Netflix for the 30th time in a row, but your partner has a family function to go to, and you are their other half, and therefore have an obligation to get up off your lazy ass and engage in some awkward family bonding. Yes, committing to love means making sacrifices. If you are unwilling to make those sacrifices, chances are good you are still single, and any offer of romance could be met by feelings of repulsion. This probably just means you’re not ready to be in a relationship yet, and those feelings of grossness in your stomach is just your instinctual desire to be free. And what happens when you have to go through the agonizing awkwardness of going to your partner’s family member’s former roommate’s funeral? You’ll have to do all sorts of socializing and talking to strangers! Gasp. The horror. In this case, I would say you are putting the cart way before the horse. Take it each day at a time.

You Care Too Much What Others Think

If you are still at that stage of basing your life choices on what others think, you are probably going to have some feelings of repulsion and fear when your friends go, “ew, you are NOT dating that loser” as if it means something. If this applies to you, then you will forever have the word LOSER attached to his dating profile and will avoid him like the plague even if you had feelings for him before. Don’t let others tell you how to think, my dear. You are your own person, after all.

You’re Just Not Attracted To Them

Sometimes we feel sick when someone shows interest in us because we are just not that interested in them back. That’s perfectly fine! It happens. Biology and all that genes stuff at play here can often leave you feeling a little repulsed by someone we are not compatible with. In this case, it’s probably pretty obvious that tangoing with them, if it happens at all, will be shortlived. Therefore, let’s move onto the next point.

You Fear Hurting Them

If you’re an empath and you know it, clap your hands. This one hits close to home. I am someone who is constantly worried about how others feel, oftentimes over how I am feeling. If I can avoid a situation where I might even cross the path of hurting someone, I will. I don’t like it. It’s a messy business. And someone having feelings is like one big pulsing nerve that the tiniest nick could damage. You may fear having that sort of responsibility for another person’s wellbeing. And as mentioned above, being vulnerable is a difficult thing. When presented with someone making a true show of their emotions, you might get your signals mixed and end up viewing it as a bad thing, because that person may come across as desperate, needy, or codependent. That is something you need to work out inside yourself. It doesn’t necessarily mean there’s anything wrong with them. Because being vulnerable does not equate to being desperate, needy, or codependent.

They Remind You Too Much Of Yourself

Ever hear the saying the reason you hate certain people is because you see something in them that reminds you of yourself? You may be projecting your own feelings of self loathing onto them, which isn’t entirely fair. Really try to pinpoint the cause of your negative feelings for those who show interest in you. Is it because they slouch? Chew with their mouths open? Interrupt? It’s possible these are things you hate about yourself, or from a past relationship that you are reminded of. That’s a whole lot of baggage that needs to be dealt with. This person isn’t your ex. This person isn’t you. Try to give them a fair chance instead of judging them based on things that remind you of the negative aspects of your own personality. And then, if you find that these habits or traits are completely theirs, then it would be appropriate to judge whether or not you would be compatible in a relationship. Just make sure you are basing this decision on the truth of the matter instead of your projected issues.

The Pity Party Of A Self Sabotage Just Feels Too Good

Ever met someone who seemed to be the victim protagonist in the dramatic story of their own lives? They play everything out like a Hollywood movie, where they are often the one who always gets hurt and must cope with the repercussions? Be careful you don’t become one of these drama queens. Be careful not to sabotage something just so you can get attention for being hurt or going through a difficult situation. Strange concept as it is, it’s ok to be happy in life. You don’t always have to create anxiety from situations that do not require it. Sometimes it’s ok just to allow someone to show you love.

You Fear Change

That pit in your stomach when you find out you have to pack everything up and leave your comfort zone? That’s what this point is about. Some people just really don’t like change, and someone coming in to your circle of life and trying to offer their way of doing things can be upsetting. If this is resonating on any level, you may want to evaluate your control tendencies. If you are someone who always likes to have things under their own control, being shown romantic advances from prospective partners might automatically make your blast doors close up. Again, it’s ok to accept something new into your life. Just because you enter into a relationship with someone doesn’t mean it’s going to change the fundamentals of who you are. Your life will still be your own, just changed.

You Don’t Do Well With Deep Emotional Displays

I get it. I’m an aquarius. Some people just don’t do well with deep displays of emotion. That doesn’t mean you aren’t a romantic! You might just be more logical than emotional, the yang to the yin. So of course, logically, the professing of feelings or romantic interest might strike you as overwhelming, but don’t forget that there are people that live their lives not by their logical mind, but by following their heart and passions. The simplest way of combatting this feeling of repulsion for someone who lives by their hearts instead of their minds is to communicate how you’re feeling. By expressing that you aren’t exactly comfortable with PDA or being super touchy with them, you create a bridge that they can either choose to cross, or burn. This way, you can both keep your boundaries and no one needs to feel like they were taken advantage of. It’s amazing what honest communication can do between humans in love.

Your Gut Is Picking Up On A Red Flag That You Should Probably Pay Attention To

Or lastly, we come to the golden rule. If your gut is telling you something feels off, trust it. If you feel sick to your stomach when someone asks you out, or won’t stop leaving lude comments on your social media profiles, then chances are good they are bad news bears. In this instance, it is perfectly acceptable to burn that bridge and leave them glowing in embers behind you. Sometimes our gut feelings are there for a reason. Just make sure you know the difference between actually being in danger and just being afraid to fuck with someone who wants to give you everything.


This was a long post, but I hope you read it all, and that it helped sort out some of those confusing feelings. I know I suffer from a lot of fear in the love department. I’m an empath, so I feel things like nervous energy heightened to over 9000. Eeek! I am trying to allow myself to be more open to being loved, and I hope you do too.

Take care, and don’t forget to take your medications.

The First Rejection Hurts The Worst.

The first rejection hurts like hell. Everything after that is just fuel for the proverbial fire of productivity.

Do you remember the first time you’ve ever had a broken heart? Maybe you were a teenager in the midst of your awkward, geeky, emotional hormone-rich stage. Maybe it happened yesterday. It doesn’t matter when it happened. All that matters is that it did. This pain is important. It teaches you things. Most importantly, it teaches you how to wipe the tears away, get back on your feet, and take a few more swings at the challenge. Without the pain of rejection, we can never really appreciate the savory taste of victory.

Whether that rejection happened in love, in searching for your “dream job”, or while you were trying to get your novel published, everyone is going to get rejected at least once. Why this rejection happens isn’t important. What’s important is how you deal with it. You must decide for yourself whether you will be a person who gets back up and continues on the journey, or folds their hand and sits in a stew of self-pity and sorrow for the rest of their lives, holding on to the one arrow in their heart that was pulled out long ago but never seems to heal. Which one are you going to be?

The fear of rejection often stops people from trying. After all, isn’t it better to remain in your safe space where nothing hurts and everything is fine? Well sure, it’s nice to live there, but you can’t stay there forever.

As one of my favorite characters, Wolf, says in The 10th Kingdom,

“Well, you may not get hurt, but huff puff, you won’t get loved either.”

Eventually you’re going to have to venture out and take a few hits. Why are we scared of this pain? Yes, heartbreak hurts, but eventually you get over it. Go out there. Get rejected. Then go out there again and do it all over again, and eventually one of those tries is going to end in success.

When I was searching for a job I loved, my mindset was solidly rooted in the idea that a career was the thing that was going to make me happy. I thought that because I didn’t have a passion for something (or rather, because I had too many), I thought that I would never find a job suitable for me. That’s a very negative mindset already to have before you even start to apply to jobs. So naturally when I received my first rejection for a job after I spent the time and energy going through the interview process, I broke down a little. The negativity grew into thoughts like “See, why did you even try?” and “you knew they were going to reject you”. But after a while those thoughts began to fade. The pain and humiliation of being rejected began to fade too, and eventually I began applying for jobs again. After that, it became an exciting challenge. “Ok,” I thought, “let’s see if I make it to an in-person interview with this company”, I would tell myself. It didn’t matter anymore whether I was hired or not. The point was that I was doing it. I was getting my resumes out there and doing the thing that seemed so scary before.

The topic of love isn’t such an easy one. That is by far the hardest rejection to cope with. Going through a breakup is never easy. For the dumpee or the dumper. As someone who has been in both positions, no one ever likes rejecting someone or being rejected, but these are life lessons that you need to learn. If you’ve never dumped someone, I highly recommend it. Just because you are rejecting someone doesn’t mean you have to be mean about it. There are nice ways of letting someone down easy, and the best one is by being honest and communicating how you are feeling, honestly. By going through both situations (being dumped and dumping), you learn how it feels to be in both positions. That’s a great life experience. There’s nothing negative about that, if you learned from it.

Don’t be afraid of that pain or discomfort, because those are the situations that really matter in life. You have to take the good with the bad. You have to prepare yourself for heartbreak in order to gain love. You must consider the fact you may be rejected after you interview for that really awesome job just as likely as you are to get it. And either way, life goes on. Just remember that.

“Why did I let her in? Didn’t I know she was bad? I did. Of course I did. But I also knew that I couldn’t keep the door closed all my life just because it was dangerous. Just because there was a chance that I might get hurt.”

Snow White, The 10th Kingdom

The first rejection hurts the worst. Everything after that is fuel. Use it to light your way. Don’t give up. You will reach your success if you continue to try.


Stay strong, little troopers.

Begin Again, Never Over artwork by Chronographia, a local Pittsburgh artist.

Take care, and don’t forget to take your medications!

Words Of Wisdom | Elizabeth Gilbert | Eat, Pray, Love

“Deep grief sometimes is almost like a specific location, a coordinate on a map of time. When you are standing in that forest of sorrow, you cannot imagine that you could ever find your way to a better place. But if someone can assure you that they themselves have stood in that same place, and now have moved on, sometimes this will bring hope.” – Elizabeth Gilbert, Eat, Pray, Love

How To | Dealing With A Life Plateau

Recently my life has revolved around self improvement. After going through “tower” energy–which for those of you who do not follow tarot, means a huge shakeup that levels everything you knew down to the foundation so that you can build something up stronger–my focus was on fixing myself. The process of healing became my raison d’etre. But now that I feel my healing is coming to an end, I am left with a confounding feeling of “what do I do now?”

If you’ve spent so much time focusing on one thing, when it ends, you might end up feeling a little lost, or like you’ve hit a plateau. Everyone in life encounters plateaus from time to time, whether it follows a new job that was once challenging but now is so routine that it has become boring, or whether you feel like you’re in the best shape of your life. Well what do you do when your health stops improving? What happens when you’ve mastered a job?

Naturally, the human inclination is to move onto something else, something better. We are constantly in a state of evolution. Humans constantly seek a new challenge. When we reach a state of peace or contentment, our nature is to create chaos, to shake things up, or to find struggle. Think about Adam and Eve. They were placed into paradise where everything was perfect. They wanted for nothing. But wouldn’t perfection like that get boring? Of course it would! Why do you think they took a risk with the apple? Because it is human nature. In more practical terms, “paradise” might be related to boredom. When you are bored it means that there is nothing to do, nothing to think about, nothing to work on. You literally are searching for something to do. You are not content to sit there and do nothing, which might sometimes be the case when you take a break from something you are currently invested in. But when you are truly bored, you aim to end that state of boredom. How? By creating conflict. The conflict might be as simple as getting up off the couch and cleaning the kitchen. Whatever it is, human nature dictates that when we become bored with things in life, we tend to shake things up.

It’s why so many people become addicted to drama. Drama constantly shakes things up. It constantly creates conflict that keeps things moving, keeps your lessons coming, keeps your life interesting. Of course not everyone adheres to drama. For those people who are relatively drama-free, they find their shake up in other ways. Perhaps those who do not seek drama already have mentally stressful jobs that constantly require focus and energy. Ever seen a dramatic doctor? Chances are low. And if they were dramatic, it probably means they don’t have many clients. The two are inversely proportionate to one another. Drama is the antithesis to hard work. Both create struggle in two very different ways. Both also serve the function of quelling boredom.

In shorter terms, you’re either working hard to change something in your life, or you’re bitching about it. The only way you are doing neither is if you’re catatonic or dead.

But I digress.

What does this have to do with plateaus?

Plateaus are what is created when you are in a state of boredom. Plateaus follow completions. Plateaus are a good thing! But when they last for long periods of time, it can make you feel a little anxious. Oh my gosh, I’m not doing anything with my life now. Your human mind is looking for the next challenge to occupy itself. How very masochistic.

In my example, for the last eight months I have been working on self improvement. I got my mental health under control, increased my income, got over a tough breakup, and learned some new skills. But over time, the thrill of these things began to fade. Now I am faced with…boredom. I have improved as much as I can at this point in my life. I hit all of my goals for the year. I have hit a plateau. But I’m not worried, because I know that plateaus don’t last forever.

As one very cool dude in history once said, or maybe it was from a book or the bible, “this too shall pass”.

So how do you “pass the kidney stone” of plateaus? Let’s look at some ideas.


Read

Reading is one of the best pastimes when you are bored with your life. Is it a conflict or challenging? No, but by reading, you open your mind up to a multitude of new information, both fictional and realistic. Perhaps you will stumble upon something that sparks a new passion, a new goal, or a new life path. Knowledge is the key to contentment. And if you don’t find anything to break the plateau of your life, at least you’ve killed a few hours of that ever-nagging boredom.

Commit

It’s easy to love something and leave it, to get a job and quit as soon as it becomes routine. It’s so easy to give up. But to break a plateau, you must commit to something. That’s how you master it. That’s how you reach Lv. 100. That’s how you become better than the other guy. You stick with it. Sometimes the best way to beat a plateau is just to endure it and come out the other side. Appreciate the small things in life, take it one step at a time. Nothing lasts forever, and if you do nothing to break a plateau, believe me, the universe has got your back. She’ll do it for you, if you wait long enough. I think we call that fate, or luck, or whatever the hell…natural disasters. The unknown variable. Stick with something long enough and sooner or later you’re going to see some sort of universal shake up.

Meditate

Meditation is just a fancy word for deep thinking. Just kidding. No it’s not. But that’s a big part of mediation. It’s all mental. If you find that you are stuck at a certain point of your life and you aren’t sure which way to turn, try meditation. Along with all the other benefits of meditation, you might just find an answer to your questions too. Sometimes just by turning off the mental clutter and negative juju you feed yourself during periods of stagnation, you are able to focus in on what’s important and think of a plan for your next steps. Even if your next step in life is to become a cat. Yep, it can happen.

Go back

Plateaus are wonderful times for self reflection. You achieve a goal and you’re feeling great, but that emotional peak is followed by the dreaded plateau. Go back to the you that you were five years ago, or ten years ago, or fifty years ago. Celebrate your accomplishments. You are not the same person as you were back then. Try to remember what you thought of back then. Did you have different goals? What was important to you? What did you want to be when you grew up? All of these reflective questions can help bring you back to the core of who you are. I also highly recommend reverting a little bit. Yeah, I know regression isn’t healthy, but sometimes by listening to the music or visiting the websites or hobbies that you used to occupy your time with can give you a great counterbalance to where you are now. Go ahead and have a good chuckle about how you used to cosplay when you were fifteen and thought you were the coolest teenager alive, living their best life. Reconnect with that inner child and give them a chance to stretch their little legs. You might just find that the room you give yourself to go back will be all you need to propel yourself forward.

Step outside your comfort zone

No good story ever begins with “So I was eating a salad”. The best stories are the ones that involve two foot long spicy volcano burritos and a trip to the bathroom that would have made Lucifer himself proud (the hugest pun in history, nyuk nyuk nyuk). Do something that scares you a little bit. Have two scoops of ice cream. Go rock climbing. Rob a bank. Just kidding, don’t do that. You never know what you’ll encounter by taking a step outside your normal routine. By wondering off your beaten path, you might just find some beautiful flowers. You might discover you are not a person who likes two scoops of ice cream. Or you might find out that you are totally a person who loves two scoops and decides to join an ice cream enthusiast group. You might tumble off a canyon wall and right into the arms of your true love (don’t laugh, it actually happened). Nothing shakes up your world like doing something that scares the hell out of you.

Join an organization

So you’ve found something that you’re really passionate about. You spent the last six months researching old books. But now what? You’ve grown tired of browsing ebay for elusive copies of Thomas Hood and Marquis De Sade. Why not share that passion with a group of people with similar interests? The thing about human interaction is that it usually propels change. Maybe you’ll make a new best friend. Or meet someone that shoves you forcefully into your dream career of being a published author. You certainly aren’t going to meet these catalysts by sitting in your bedroom. By joining a club or organization, you are inviting change. It might not be the ultimate change that you imagined, but it might just be the push that gets the ball rolling.

Return to nature

I don’t know of any problems that can’t be solved by returning to nature. (Except perhaps life threatening diseases. Nature can’t really fix that. Go see a doctor.) Outside of that, however, nature is a great place to go when you’re feeling stagnant. Realign you energy, feel the wind tangling your hair into a rats nest, run away from ALL THE BEES. There is so much to see outside in nature, so much to experience. Nothing makes you appreciate your standing in life more than being chased five hundred feet by an angry mama bear. Perhaps you can dip your feet into the scum filled pond at your local park, or get a brilliant lobster red sunburn at the beach. All joking aside, getting some sunshine and fresh air is super healthy and I highly recommend it. It might not solve your plateau, but it will probably make you feel at least a little better.

Explore your world

Do you remember being little and exploring all sorts of things? Even something as foreign as your backyard was exciting. You could get your hands dirty and play in poison ivy with no cares in the world for the danger of scratching your own skin open while whining profusely to your mother about “oh my god, it burns! It burns!” Oh yes, exploration leads to strange and extraordinary opportunities to live. Now, as an adult, exploration doesn’t have to be so itchy. Instead, you can explore much more enjoyable things, like the new speakeasy in the cultural district, or the burlesque show that you would never ever have considered going to in your life. Boredom leads to very interesting shake ups. Even if you have to go exploring on your own, doing something new and exciting might just be enough to jar you out of your flatline lifestyle. Ever seen the movie Eyes Wide Shut? You know, the movie with the infamous orgy? The main character in that movie leads a perfectly normal life. He has a good job, a lovely wife, everything a middle aged person could possibly want. Because of that contentment, he creates drama by following a metaphorical white rabbit into a world of secret societies, weird sex things, and danger. Of course there’s more to it than that, but just roll with it for the analogy.

Make new goals

And lastly, and probably most obviously, make new goals. When you hit a certain level, the next logical step is to climb to the next. Unless you are one of the most powerful and rich people in the world, there is always room to improve. There is always room to learn more, meet new people, and experience new challenges. Make a list of goals for the next year, the next five years, the next ten years. Determine that you want to join the peace corps, or remodel your house, or get married. One of those new goals could even be as ambitious as being president someday. I mean, they’re letting anyone run for president these days, so…


What do you do when you’re feeling stuck or stagnant in life? Leave a comment! 

Talk later, friends!