Adult Things

Sometimes I find it hard to figure out what life wants me to do. I feel as if I’m being pushed by the wind in one direction, then quick as a wink, I’m being pushed in the other. It doesn’t exactly make sense to me, but I’m working on figuring out what life has in store.

Certainly over the last 24 years I’ve come a long way, so I must have been doing something correctly. Although, I know I’ve made many mistakes in my past, I’d like to think I’ve matured in my mind set through each trial and tribulation I have faced. Like many of us, I went through the rebellious phase, the “I hate every one” phase, and the “I know everything” phase which was quickly followed by the “I actually know nothing” phase. Fortunately, these have all led me to the “I’m learning to be an adult” phase.

I have to admit, being an adult is not all it’s cracked up to be. Don’t get me wrong, the ability to go out to bars and… well no actually that’s it. I’ve really only found that being an adult is fun when you get to go out and do ‘adult’ things. Working 40 hours a week definitely isn’t a walk in the park, and having to pay for literally everything you want makes you quite the penny pincher after a while. You have to think about others when you make decisions because whatever you do, can and will affect someone else along the way. Being an adult also means that when something goes wrong, you have to take responsibility. You chose to date that person who screwed you over (again), You chose to drink one too many drinks and drive home, and You chose to stay up partying until 2am when you have to give a presentation at 8am.

There’s been times where I’ve said things and instantly regretted it the moment it came spilling out of my mouth. At that point, you have to take responsibility because that’s what an adult does.

Being an adult is a hard lesson to learn.

What’s even harder, is learning that just by virtue of being an ‘adult’ in the age sense, you’re not necessarily an adult.

Webster dictionary defines being an adult as being fully developed and mature. Now you may be thinking, I was fully developed at age 16. No. Not physically; fully developed and mature in the sense of mental capabilities and understanding. Just because you are of a certain age doesn’t necessarily mean you are mentally equipped to be considered an adult. There are 16 year olds who are being sentenced to life in adult prisons because they made adult decisions and took matters into their own hands. While on the other hand there are 40 year olds who still live in their parents basements because they haven’t matured enough to make decisions that will benefit them.

In my eyes, you are an adult when you are able to take responsibility for yourself, your actions and your thoughts. When you can make decisions, wise decisions that will benefit you or others on your own. But also, when you are able to be financially responsible. Having the will power to not spend $1200 on a LV bag but instead putting the money aside just in case your car breaks down or putting it in a savings account. Financial responsibility means  paying your bills on time, not splurging on silly items, and never having to borrow money from anyone.

If you are able to say you currently possess those characteristics, then you may be an adult. If not, then keep trying. I’m 24 and I’m still learning how to be an adult.

That’s what adults do, they keep trying and don’t give up when it gets tough.

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What they don’t tell you

They don’t tell you that when you get a pup you’ll fall in love with her immediately and never want to live another day without her. They don’t tell you that when you start a new show on Netflix that you’ll become hooked, and binge watch nine seasons in two weeks. They don’t tell you that when you wish upon a star it doesn’t come true. They didn’t tell you any of this. You’ve had to learn it on your own. You’ve had to learn how to fend for yourself on a daily basis against people who are going to try to tear you down. Day in and day out, you have had to come to conclusions on your own about nearly everything you’ve encountered. Whether to drive the speed limit or risk going 20 mph over because you’re running late to work. Realizing that when you mix dark and light liquor, you will have one of the worst hangovers you could imagine. Or even figuring out that if you say something as a joke, some people may take it personally and you’ve now offended someone. They don’t teach you these things.

But who’s they?

We are so quick to place the blame on anyone; our parents, coworkers, friends, family, strangers we meet, etc. But who do we not place the blame on? Ourselves. Because lets be real here, what do we ever do wrong?

It’s a cat and mouse game when it comes to placing the blame. Instead of standing up and taking the responsibility for what has occurred, we point fingers and push others under the bus in order to avoid any consequences that are thrown our way.

When did it get to be like that? In my opinion, it stems from when we were children. We were taught right from wrong from moment we entered the world. Yes, you can have dessert after you finish dinner. No, don’t touch the hot stove. These decisions were drilled into our minds without question or hesitation from a young age. We have taken these life lessons with us through our lives, and passed them down to others along the way. But what about the other side? What about what we had to learn on our own?

That’s the kicker. We have had to learn how to go throughout life making decisions on our own. These decisions affect your life, your health, your physical, mental and emotional status on a daily basis. What you choose to do with your life is nobody else choice but yours. You have nobody else to blame for the choices you make. It’s not the same as when you were a child and someone would tell you not to run in the street, or not to shop lift. If something doesn’t work out the way you wanted it to, you can’t pass the blame onto someone else. No-one made the choice for you. There was nobody forcing your hand to do what you didn’t want to do. You have free will. You can say yes, or you can say no.

Ultimately, these decisions and choices were made by you. They were thought through and decided for. Depending on the choice that was made, the outcome has a possibility of either being positive to negative. However, that outcome affects only one person directly. You. 

In this life, beyond age 18, you are at the age of accountability. The decisions you make on a daily basis are going to affect you, and only you, for the rest of your life. So remember, choose wisely.

Disappointment

It’s a feeling, it’s an emotion, and it’s something we all experience at one point or another during the duration of our lives. The feeling does not necessarily change depending on the person, just the situation. Everyone feels disappointment in some capacity, whether it is that moment you find out you’ve failed a test that you’ve studied weeks for, or when your significant other breaks it off out of nowhere. Regardless of the situation, the feeling of disappointment has crept into our hearts and minds at least once since the moment we entered the world.

So what do we do about it? You can hold onto that feeling, or you can let it pass through you and continue on with your life. But that’s hard, I don’t know how to do that. Well, you learn. You learn to let things go as they come to you. How? Well, let’s refer back to my example. There’s the test you studied for, harder than any other test you’ve ever taken, but still managed to fail by one point. It’s disappointing because you spent countless hours understanding and memorizing the material, time that could have been spent working or going out with friends. But think about it in another way. Sure, you failed. But you can take it again, and this time you have an idea of the material to study from the last test. Maybe the next time you take the test you’ll pass with flying colors. Maybe it just wasn’t in the plan for you to pass this time because the next time you take it there will be a better opportunity waiting for you immediately after. That’s it. Take the disappointment you feel, and turn it into feeling something positive.

Now, maybe everyone hasn’t failed a test multiple times but we’ve all had our hearts broken a time or two. But what happened after the broken heart? You healed. You moved on. You began living again. It isn’t easy, guaranteed. The pain and disappointment you feel when its stemming from someone you love is undoubtedly one of the most heart wrenching feelings you will ever experience. When the one you have loved with all your heart and soul betrays the trust you have formed together, it is a feeling that cannot be replicated or easily forgotten. But you move on, you let the hard feelings go and you learn from the experience. Its difficult because you carry that around with you to every relationship after that experience. But the fact of the matter is, the disappointment you feel is because that person destroyed the expectation you had for them. You expected that this person would never hurt you, never leave you, or never stop loving you. But they did, and now you’re left to pick up the pieces. So that’s what you do. You pick up the pieces and begin living your life again. The disappointment caused from this person will not last forever, and it will subside as time goes on.

What I’m ultimately getting at is that disappointment is only a feeling. It’s an emotion. It is something we all feel, and it’s something we can all get past. Don’t let the feeling of disappointment manifest inside of you and create unbreakable walls. You’ve been disappointed before, but you get through it and continue on with your day. These experiences where you’ve felt disappointed have helped you get to where you are. They are just building blocks. So build your way up, and don’t let anything, including emotions, knock you down.

Life Untold

There’s something to say about happiness.

Happiness has its ups and downs, it ebbs and flows, day in and day out. Some people have a steady influx of happiness on a fairly regular basis, while others deal with the unsteady calamity of mood swings as often as we change our clothes. But that’s what happiness is, right? You learn to take the good with the bad, because without the bad, you wouldn’t learn to appreciate the good (or so I’ve been told).

Sometimes, there are the days where happiness is oozing out of your pores, and you can feel the smile thats permanently etched on your face. While other days you lay face down in a pillow questioning what happiness is, and if you’ll ever feel it again.

The happiness I’m referring to isn’t that feeling when you see a pup in a store window, or the feeling in your stomach after you have a delicious meal. This happiness is inside of you. This happiness is relative, and is different in every person on this planet.

What I’ve learned in my 24 years on this Earth, is that happiness is abstract. You cannot physically grasp it; it doesn’t come in the form of a person, or in a materialistic object. Happiness exists in the mind. In the psyche, if you will. It is only when we are in this state of inner happiness, that we reach the point of serenity within ourselves. When we are not in this state, we often feel anxious, angry or depressed. We search for that happiness in other people, in things money can buy. But thats not where happiness derives.

It comes from you. It comes from within. It comes from realizing that you’re worth it no matter what, regardless of what your mind tells you. It comes from finding the good in yourself that you didn’t believe you had. It comes from the realization that you are here and you are alive.

You. Happiness starts and finishes with you. Nobody else. Just you. So take a deep breath, and begin your journey to find that happiness.