🌞Sunshine Blogger Award 7.0🌞

Whoever is reading this post, thank you for taking time out of your busy day to connect with me! I’m currently out of creative ideas so one of the best ways to kick-start my writing is to work on these Sunshine Blogger Awards. There always seem to be an abundance of them in my drafts because I am slow getting around to completing them. In case you missed my last post, here is a link to my similar yet different blog post titled 🌞Sunshine Blogger Award 6.0🌞

screen-shot-2018-03-23-at-8-2116615623 (1)

The Sunshine Blogger Award is per recognition award for bloggers who inspire readers by promoting positivity and bringing joy. Thank you, Geneva, for nominating me for the award on August 14, 2019. Geneva runs a parenting blog called cerratomom.com, where she writes about “all things relating to baby, mom, and parenting” from personal experiences.

If these topics interest you, I highly suggest that you check out Geneva’s blog. My first impression of Geneva is that she cares about her readers. She goes out of her way to give encouragement and support to those who seek it. That being said, from a parenting perspective, she has a lot of advice and wisdom focused around dealing with anxiety and depression. 


🌞Sunshine Blogger Award Rules🌞

The Sunshine Blogger Award has rules (surprise, surprise!). These rules ensure the success of this award, providing exposure to all the award winners. The rules are quite simple and straightforward.

Rules for Award:

  • Thank the person who nominated you and provide a link back to their blog so others can find them.
  • Answer the 11 questions asked by the blogger who nominated you.
  • Nominate 11 other bloggers and ask them 11 new questions.
  • Notify the nominees about it by commenting on one of their blog posts.
  • List the rules and display a Sunshine Blogger Award logo on your post and/or your blog site.

Questions I was asked:

1. What is your favorite kind of weather? Sunny with a chance of rain 🌦️

2. Would you rather read or write? Both! I need to read in order to improve my writing and communication skills.

3. When it comes to food, do you prefer salty or sweet? Honestly, I wouldn’t be surprised if I was born with a rattle in one hand and a lollipop in the other. This girl has a terrible sweet tooth and still struggles with a sugar addiction to this day. 🍭🍭

4. Have you ever been to Disneyland? Nope.

5. What made you want to start a blog? Mostly boredom and the need to vent about things that were bothering me. Even though my blog is available for anyone to read, I feel like I am not annoying people with my venting and ranting, unlike other social media platforms which feel a bit too pushy and invasive. I appreciate each and every one of you who read my content and leave comments. The fact that you actually want to read my blog means so much to me! ❤

6. Which country would you love to visit? I previously answered this question in 🌞The Sunshine Blogger Award🌞 and to cut to the chase, I would love to visit Japan. I was fortunate to visit Asia in summer 2018 where I spent two weeks in Singapore.

img_0547_19535421120_o

Luckily, Canada carries Japanese goodies. Image: Ramune soda fizzy candy, pretty origami paper, and a Miku Hatsune key chain.

img_1101_19707570185_o

Featured here is my Miku Hatsune mug ◡‿◡✿

7. If you could have one superpower, what would it be and why? I wish I could teleport into fictional worlds, such as books or movies. Admit it! At one point, you probably wished you lived in a fictional world too. Day to day life is often too boring and repetitive for me, and and many people rely on escapism for a breath of fresh air. Being able to physically teleport into fictional worlds would be like escapism on steroids, and a step up from virtual reality. 😅

Escapism – the tendency to seek distraction and relief from unpleasant realities, especially by seeking entertainment or engaging in fantasy.

8. Who is your favorite fictional character? I recently had this discussion with Ilona from https://ciccophoto.com, and I told her that my favorite fictional character is Miku Hatsune, a voice bank from the Japanese synthesizing software known as VOCALOID. Even though the software has expanded over the years to include dozens of characters and their corresponding voice banks, Miku will always be my favourite! 

If you’re curious to know what she sounds like, here is a peaceful/sad songs playlist with hundreds of songs to keep you entertained for hours. You’re welcome. ◡‿◡✿

Miku_v4_bundle_art (2)


9. What is your favourite show to watch? I prefer watching documentaries related to health and wellness. The majority of the documentaries that I watch happen to be British, which I usually stream on YouTube. I do not watch a lot of TV so I couldn’t tell you what the latest TV shows are on Netflix. Any TV shows that I watch on a regular basis are shows that Nick introduced me to, such as Big Bang Theory and Young Sheldon.

10. What are you afraid of? I have Globophobia, which is the fear of balloons, especially the anticipation that they will pop. Surprisingly, this fear is not as unusual as you might think. A psychology professor who taught at my previous university has a fear of balloons, as well as my mom’s friend. According to Wikipedia, here is the definition of balloon phobia:

Balloon phobia or globophobia is a fear of balloons. The source of fear may be the sound of balloons popping. Generally, globophobics will refuse to touch, feel, or go near a balloon for fear it will pop.

chair-731171_1280

The phobia has control over you, which is anxiety-provoking at social events. Image sourced from https://pixabay.com

11. What is something you want people to know about you? I don’t have my life together, despite what people think. People assume that I have an easy life and that I get everything I want, but life is not all sunshine and rainbows. As someone who has always struggled with anxiety, depression, and loneliness, I’m slowly coming to terms with my demons.


🌞SUNSHINE BLOGGER AWARD NOMINEES🌞

https://saltedcaramel670.wordpress.com/

https://midnightwander.wordpress.com/

https://theblackprincessdiaries.com/

https://middleme.net/

https://hunidasblog.com/

https://untipsyteacher.com/

https://kathleens-blog.com/

https://seaofwordsx.wordpress.com/

https://journeythroughlife591163021.wordpress.com/

https://mentalhealthathome.org/

https://mochalatteandconversation.wordpress.com/

QUESTIONS FOR THE NOMINEES:

1. What year did you start blogging?
2. What is the most valuable thing you’ve learned from blogging?
3. What time of day do you blog most often?
4. Are you a morning lark or a night owl?
5. What is the first thing you do after waking up?
6. Is breakfast the most important meal of the day? Why or why not?
7. What is your favorite social media platform and why?
8. Do you drive a car?
9. What does luxury mean to you?
10. Who is your role model?
11. What is your job/career/profession?

And….GO!! There is no pressure to respond to this nomination, as I know you have very busy lives outside of the blogging world. I look forward to reading your answers if you do decide to participate in the Sunshine Blogger Award. I am curious to know what your answers are! BTW, I am reusing the same questions I asked last time because I haven’t previously nominated these bloggers.

great-vibes.regular (1)

 

 

🌞Sunshine Blogger Award 6.0🌞

Whoever is reading this post, thank you for taking time out of your busy day to connect with me! I hope you are all doing well, especially since flu season is back and students are in the midst of stressful midterms yet again. In case you missed my last post, here is a link to my last blog post titled 31-Day Motivational Journal Review.

screen-shot-2018-03-23-at-8-2116615623 (1)The Sunshine Blogger Award is per recognition award for bloggers who inspire readers by promoting positivity and bringing joy. Thank you, Tatterhood, for nominating me on August 12, 2019 for the award. Your blog gives me daily inspiration and reminds of reading a diary. I like the personal touch that you have added to your daily musings. If you haven’t heard of Tatterhood yet, please go give her blog some love! ❤

sunshine-blogger-award-1024x679-1024x585-1

🌞Sunshine Blogger Award Rules🌞

The Sunshine Blogger Award has rules (surprise, surprise!). These rules ensure the success of this award, providing exposure to all the award winners. The rules are quite simple and straightforward.

Rules for Award:

  • Thank the person who nominated you and provide a link back to their blog so others can find them.
  • Answer the 11 questions asked by the blogger who nominated you.
  • Nominate 11 other bloggers and ask them 11 new questions.
  • Notify the nominees about it by commenting on one of their blog posts.
  • List the rules and display a Sunshine Blogger Award logo on your post and/or your blog site.

Questions I was asked:

1. Have you ever been hypnotized (stage hypnosis)? No, I have not been hypnotized on stage or through self-directed hypnotic therapy. I’ve always been a little skeptical of hypnotism and feel like it wouldn’t work on me. I know that in order for hypnosis to work, one has to keep an open mind and I am already closed minded. 😂

2. Do you believe in aliens? Sure, why not? It is likely that aliens probably exist, considering how HUGE outer space is. There is probably intelligent life on a distant planet in a distant universe somewhere far, far away.

3. What would your Circus Act be? Well, I cannot juggle and my balance is horrible so that eliminates a lot of options. I took a quiz because I couldn’t answer this question, and my result is a sideshow performer!

You are a rarity indeed! A little off the beaten path, your pride is in your individuality. No bed of nails or floor of broken glass can scare you. You take it all with a smile. Some may call you a “freak”, but you should consider that a compliment. Remember, uniqueness is what gets you noticed!

4. If you were invisible for a day, what would be the first thing you would do? The first thing I would do is take advantage of free travel, find someone that I dislike, and follow this person home. Then I would haunt their house for the day and follow them around town just for fun. Specifically, this needs to be someone I don’t like because I would figure out their social media passwords, hoping that they still use Facebook and whatnot, and I would hack into their Facebook account to permanently change their passwords and emails. Facebook wouldn’t suspect anything since I would be doing this in real time and location. It would be fun to read their private messages, mess up their relationships, and maybe add a few status updates of my own. Karma’s a bitchAt the end of the day, maybe I will ghost slap them on my way out the door. Too bad the ghosting life is short-lived. 🤷‍♀️

5. Hogwarts House? I am not a Harry Potter fangirl, so I will let another quiz determine my fate. My results from the quiz indicate that I am 30% Ravenclaw, 27% Gryffindor, 26% Hufflepuff, and 17% Slytherin!

You believe above all in the importance of wisdom, which is why you undoubtedly belong in Ravenclaw, but your sense of adventure means you may also have an affinity for Gryffindor house. You are a thrill-seeker – you love to travel and there’s nothing more exciting to you than new experiences – and believe that adventure is essential in the pursuit of knowledge. You are brave, but would never intentionally put yourself in danger, placing you firmly in Ravenclaw.

Your slight compatibility with Hufflepuff house suggests a deep love and appreciation for those close to you, which you may keep hidden for fear of being hurt.

 6. A smell you hate? Gasoline.

Capture1.JPG

Corner Gas… well, what’s left of it. We were lucky to get these photos before it got torn down. 😥

Capture

The fictional Dog River grain elevator lives on. My camera has a mind of its own since the ground is actually really flat.

7. A flower you love? Sunflowers 🌻

8. Who is the strongest Avenger? I know nothing about the Avengers except that it involves Superheroes. Based on this knowledge or lack thereof, I will conclude that the strongest Avenger is the Incredible Hulk.

9. Star Wars or Star Trek? Ugh, I do not like either of them. However, Star Trek is much worse in my opinion since it’s SO outdated. I choose Star Wars but please don’t make me watch a Star Wars movie with you.

10. Ever been on Stage? Does the stage in the school gym at my elementary school count? I played my violin in a school talent show back in Grade 6.

11. Do you have a pet? – Insert Photo & show your love ❤

WhatsApp Image 2019-04-16 at 7.38.11 PM

Cozy mornings with my therapy cat ❤

WhatsApp Image 2019-04-16 at 12.59.27 PM

Rebecca and Timon the Cat 💕


🌞Sunshine Blogger Award Nominees🌞

https://puddlesidemusings.wordpress.com

https://sippingcupsofinspiration.wordpress.com

https://acupofwonderland.com

https://noloveforfatties.com

https://priyankaspen.com

https://ciccophoto.com

https://justhannahhere.blog

https://chocoviv.home.blog

https://giannaandgemini.wordpress.com

https://inhisserviceandlovingit.wordpress.com

https://crystalbyers.com

Questions for the nominees:

1. What year did you start blogging?
2. What is the most valuable thing you’ve learned from blogging?
3. What time of day do you blog most often?
4. Are you a morning lark or a night owl?
5. What is the first thing you do after waking up?
6. Is breakfast the most important meal of the day? Why or why not?
7. What is your favorite social media platform and why?
8. Do you drive a car?
9. What does luxury mean to you?
10. Who is your role model?
11. What is your job/career/profession?

And….GO!! There is no pressure to respond to this nomination, as I know you have very busy lives outside of the blogging world. I look forward to reading your answers if you do decide to participate in the Sunshine Blogger Award. I am curious to know what your answers are!

great-vibes.regular (1)

 

Snail Mail, Anyone?

Whenever I am having a bad day like today, I have a habit to self-soothe (don’t we all?) by indulging in some shopping therapy. Not just any kind of shopping therapy though. Preferably, stationary-related shopping therapy. I don’t know why I gravitate towards glittery cards, stickers, notebooks, coloring books, etc. Now that Halloween-themed merchandise has taken over the store shelves, guess what I bought today? Halloween-themed cards and stickers! These items are flat enough to fit into an envelope which I can send via snail mail. Sometimes, I like to include photos, but this year I did not feel like taking photos that are worth sending. What can I say? Depression deprived me of the joy I once had for photography. 🙅‍♀️

img_8748

When I lived next door to the neighbors with young kids, I would make treat bags for them! 🎃

Seeing the kids’ faces light up made my heart happy.

Luckily, sending handwritten cards still brings me joy these days, and my CBT therapist encouraged me to continue sending mail because it gives me a sense of connection. One of my favorite hobbies includes pen-palling with both online and IRL friends who live across the country (Canada) and across the border (United States). This is my way of telling faraway friends that I am thinking about them. Some of them I’ve met in person, and others I have yet to meet. Perhaps I am childish for believing that snail mail is still a cool thing when there is email and instant messaging available at our fingertips, or maybe I am too old fashioned. After all, I am an old soul who feels like an old lady trapped inside a younger person’s body. Not only that, but I also find that text messaging lacks authenticity. Given the option, I much rather receive a birthday card with a hand-written message than a generic text message on my phone that says, “Happy Birthday!” 👉Copy. Paste. Send.

Cute birthday card I received in the mail from a friend back at home. Inside was a lovely handwritten note. 💌

Right now, I am only sending mail to people who live in Canada and the US. In the future, I would love to expand my pen-pal mailing list to include international pen pals as well. Luckily, I still have a few international stamps leftover from my wedding. If you are interested in exchanging mail with me, feel free to contact me here, or you can email me at hilary_harm_7@hotmail.com

img_3660.jpg

Like what you see? I try to send things that I think the other person will like. In this case, it happened to be rainbow unicorns and pink skulls #random

Disclaimer: I won’t be sending snail mail in 2020 because I will be a full-time student and part-time mommy again. If everything goes as planned, I want to take the accelerated route during the summer months so that I will [hopefully] finish school in December 2020. Will I be publishing new blog posts in 2020? Tbh, I am not a psychic so I don’t have the answer yet. Thank you for understanding that not all of us were gifted with the ability to foresee the future.

img_8937.jpg

I went a little overboard in 2016 and mailed 50+ Christmas cards to friends and family! 🙊

What are your thoughts about snail mail? Do you think that instant messaging is good enough or is mailing physical letters a lost art? Have you ever sent mail to online friends who live far, far away? Please leave a comment by joining the conversation below ↓

Thanks for stopping by!

great-vibes.regular (1)

 

 

C’est La Vie

English translation? That’s life.

Oh, and I added a pun too. That’s Vee, the blogger who runs a site called milleniallifecrisis.org. In case you haven’t seen her blog yet, please do me a favor and check out her blog. This blog post will make more sense if you read her blog post first (see image below for a preview). Thank you, Vee, for your lovely shout-out! ❤

 Meeting Vee

img_4816

We both happened to be in the right place at the right time. The other day, Vee and I agreed to meet each other and chat over coffee at a local Starbucks. There is something quite relaxing about the smooth jazz usually playing in coffee shops, muffled chatter, and the smell of fresh brewed coffee. Vee is the first blogger who I had the privilege to meet in person from this wonderful WordPress community, so I am feeling very #blessed right now. Did I seriously just use the word #blessed in a sentence? Yes, yes I did.

I believe that every friendship needs to be built on a foundation of trust and respect. Meeting Vee made me feel at peace, and my social anxiety quickly subsided. In a way, I feel like we have been friends for a long time even though we had just met. Also, I felt a strange sense of familiarity as if we crossed paths before.

Fortunately, I learned that socializing with new people does not have to be scary. I often let social anxiety dictate my life so last week, I was really impressed by myself for stepping outside of my comfort zone. Because I am an introvert and a bit of a recluse, I prefer to hide in my house all day, everyday. However, I know that hiding is not a healthy coping mechanism. Not only that, but I recently learned that I actually prefer talking to people in person rather than video chatting or calling them on the phone. There is a stereotype that Millennials dislike making phone calls, so I guess I fit that stereotype! 🤷‍♀️

Finally, we should all celebrate our victories in life, no matter how big or small. As someone who deals with social anxiety and shyness myself, I understand how liberating it can be to push boundaries and face fears. In fact, I was initially drawn towards nursing school because I wanted to see if I could get comfortable with social anxiety.

“Every worthwhile accomplishment, big or little, has its stages of drudgery and triumph: a beginning, a struggle, and a victory.” ―Mahatma Gandhi

I am grateful that I had the rare opportunity to meet Vee in real life, and I hope that we will see each other again in the future. I am wondering if YOU ever met someone from the WordPress community. Who did you meet? Where you excited or nervous prior to meeting them? Please join the conversation and leave a comment below ↓

Thanks for stopping by!

great-vibes.regular (1)

Breaking Trust

1:00 AM: My heart is pounding through my chest and anger rages through my veins like a forest fire. I’m not angry – I’m furious. I feel like the carpet has been pulled out from under my feet by some prankster. Right now, I’m sobbing like a 2-year old who desperately longs for a comforting hug and a popsicle to soothe the pain. In reality, I am an adult and I won’t be eating any popsicles tonight to help me self-soothe the pain away. The pain I feel is emotional and I’m not the type to eat my feelings anyways.

I apologize for wasting your time with another depressing post. If you would prefer to read something more uplifting and positive, feel free to click away. Because this is the internet and everyone can read my blog posts, I cannot openly express who hurt me or share the juicy details with you. That being said, this post isn’t directed towards you or anyone else in the blogging community. I am writing this blog post because it’s incredibly painful for me to fathom what happened last night and I just want to be understood.

As some of you already know, 2019 has been a bad year for me. I try my best to stay positive but it’s difficult when I’m dealing with $hit that is VERY triggering to my mental health and well-being. Tomorrow, I have my first cognitive behavioral therapy (CBT) session on campus so I plan to discuss my anxiety and trust issues with the therapist. I have been on a 3-month waiting list so I am grateful that I am finally getting some professional help.

What the hell is happening to the world?

Everyone handles anger differently. My anger accumulates in the pit of my stomach which makes it difficult for me to eat after experiencing hurt or betrayal. My negative emotions feel like a tangled ball of anger, envy, jealousy, and frustration towards everything that’s wrong in my life right now. It is like I am drowning in my own sea of negative emotions and I have lost the ability to breathe.

large

This elegant image of Miku Hatsune illustrates depression in an artistic way. Source: https://weheartit.com/entry/253679447

As Sheldon states from The Big Bang Theory, “Everything is changing and it’s simply too much!” After being mislead and lied to by my loved ones this week, I don’t know who I can trust anymore. I have been lied to by friends in the past which seriously sucks, but loved ones… really? Am I destined to be lied to by everyone I encounter in my life? What other secrets have they been keeping from me?

10:00 AM: In my book, lying is NOT okay. From the moment I met you, I made it very clear that lying is unacceptable and that I won’t tolerate it. However, you made the choice to keep me in the dark by making me oblivious and ignorant to the world around me. Like they say, ignorance is bliss…. but is it really bliss? Even though you felt like it was best to protect me during my most vulnerable moments, you still lied to my face and broke the foundation that we worked so hard to build. You probably felt like I was too emotionally unstable to handle the truth, but you also kept me in the dark. Right now, I’m having a hard time trusting anyone including you.

Trust-Quotations-052

Trust is a fragile thing – difficult to build and easy to break.

How does it feel when you realize that you’ve been lied to? Do you believe that it is ever OK to lie to someone? Please join the conversation and leave a comment below ↓ I really enjoy reading your comments! ❤️

Thanks for stopping by!

great-vibes.regular (1)

🌞The Sunshine Blogger Award 5.0🌞

Whoever is reading this post, thank you for taking time out of your day to connect with me! I hope you are all doing well. In case you missed my last post, here is a link to my last blog post titled 3.2.1 Quote Me! – love. 

screen-shot-2018-03-23-at-8-2116615623 (1)The Sunshine Blogger Award is per recognition award for bloggers who inspire readers by promoting positivity and bringing joy. Thank you, Steve, from Steve’s Country, for nominating me or the award. Your blog really does make me smile “as wide as a country sunrise.”   

I highly recommend that you follow Steve if you haven’t done so already. His collection of beautiful flora and fauna photography, as well as vivid imagery he creates through poetry and personal experiences is sure to take you on an adventure while you sip your morning coffee. We also live in the same country which is pretty cool! Oh Canada! 🇨🇦

sunshine-blogger-award-1024x679-1024x585-1

🌞Sunshine Blogger Award Rules🌞

The Sunshine Blogger Award has rules (surprise, surprise!). These rules ensure the success of this award, providing exposure to all the award winners. The rules are quite simple and straightforward.

Rules for Award:

  • Thank the person who nominated you and provide a link back to their blog so others can find them.
  • Answer the 11 questions asked by the blogger who nominated you.
  • Nominate 11 other bloggers and ask them 11 new questions.
  • Notify the nominees about it by commenting on one of their blog posts.
  • List the rules and display a Sunshine Blogger Award logo on your post and/or your blog site.

Questions I was asked:

1. What is your favourite fruit? Personally, I love them all so it’s hard for me to narrow it down to just one. I can narrow it down to my top 3 favourite fruits: peaches 🍑 mangoes 🥭 and raspberries😍

2. What one place in the world would you like to visit, outside your own country? The cherry blossom festival in Japan!

3. Do you like pets? As a matter of fact, I like cats and dogs. At one point, I wanted to be a veterinarian but I feel like this is every girl’s dream. I co-oped at a veterinary clinic and got to adopt a pug from a litter of pug puppies after witnessing a disturbing euthanasia that left me in tears. I named my pug after the pug that was euthanized in memory of that dog. My pug is now 9 years old and she lives with my parents in Ontario. Recently, my husband and I adopted a cat from a local animal shelter to help me deal with my depression. I love this cat so much and he puts up with a lot of toddler shenanigans….

15351721078_390261454f_k

Zoë is a 9 year old fawn pug who lives with my parents. She enjoys spending time at my dad’s boat on weekends.

WhatsApp Image 2019-05-12 at 11.21.50 AM.jpeg

My boy, Timon, chilling in his cat tree.

4. Do you like beetles? I don’t mind The Beatles as in the band, but I am terrified of creepy crawlies. I get itchy just thinking about beetles.

5. Do you enjoy flower gardening? Honestly, I’ve never tried to tend to a garden. Considering how terrible I am at keeping house plants alive, I rather not chance it. A few potted plants is all I need to be happy.

some-edits-and-stuff-i-used-to-make-when-i-was-bored_15351327818_o

I wouldn’t mind having potted plants like these! Courtney S. is the owner of this photo (we were neighbors a very long time ago) but I don’t have a link to give her credit.

6. Do you enjoy yard work? My mom complains about the weeds, so I probably wouldn’t enjoy yard work. I didn’t mind mowing the lawn as a kid because my dad paid me to mow it. Now that I’m an adult, I would prefer to own a property that requires little to no yard maintenance.

7. Do you like winter? If yes, you obviously don’t live around here. By winter I mean at least 5 months with snow on the ground and temps getting as cold as -30°C. NOPE! 👎 I dislike climates that are too hot or too cold. Canada is way too cold for me and our winters/cold temperatures typically last 8+ months of the year with approx. 2 months of scorching hot summers. When it’s -30°C outside and I’m with you, I literally cannot feel my face. Seriously, who thought that living in Canada was a good idea?

img_0934_19087557293_o.jpg

Summer vs. winter in Canada. Don’t let the pretty snow fool you.

8. Do you enjoy traveling? Yes and no. Travelling is a bit stressful and I usually don’t find it relaxing. I haven’t done a lot of travelling so my views might change once I start exploring more countries. This summer, we will be flying across the country to visit our families and honestly, even these “mini vacations” are mentally draining and physically exhausting.

9. Do you enjoy moving? My husband and I move around A LOT. Honestly, I don’t know what home is anymore. Within the last 5 years, we have moved house a handful of times. We will be moving again in a couple of years, hopefully to our forever home. My husband wants to leave Canada for several reasons but I am not thrilled about moving to a foreign country.

10. Do you prefer sunrise or sunset? Notice the word prefer, means pick only one. I prefer sunset because most evenings, I get to watch the sun set. Usually I am still asleep when the sun rises.

11. How many hours of sleep do you prefer to have? Ideally, 8-9 hours of sleep. I can easily sleep 13+ hours on any given day, so I have to force myself to wake up at a reasonable hour. I don’t know why I’m always tired but it’s probably a result of food allergies or intolerance.


🌞Sunshine Blogger Award Nominees🌞

https://thelawofattractionandmylife.com

https://gcerrato.home.blog

https://huguetteantoun.com

https://easydiet.blog

https://mynamaste365online.blog

http://jennylouise.blog/category/healthy-mind

https://vihani.home.blog

https://ashokwahi.wordpress.com

https://sensiblyfrugalliving.home.blog

https://discoveringyourhappiness.com

https://miscellaneousmichelleca.wordpress.com

Questions for the nominees:

1. What country do you live in?
2. What year did you publish your first blog post?
3. What is your favorite blog post you’ve written and why?
4. What is the most valuable thing you’ve learned from blogging?
5. What book has influenced you greatly?
6. What is the meaning of life?
7. If you could eliminate one thing from your daily routine, what would it be and why?
8. What is the scariest thing you have ever done for fun?
9. Are you a listener or a talker?
10. Would you rather have more time or more money?
11. What song best describes your life right now?

And….GO!! There is no pressure to respond to this nomination, as I know you have very busy lives outside of the blogging world. I look forward to reading your answers if you do decide to participate in the Sunshine Blogger Award. I am curious to know what your answers are!

great-vibes.regular (1)

🌞The Sunshine Blogger Award 4.0🌞

Whoever is reading this post, thank you for taking time out of your day to connect with me! I hope you are all doing well. In case you missed my last post, you can read about my opinion about buying and selling locally here

screen-shot-2018-03-23-at-8-2116615623 (1)The Sunshine Blogger Award is per recognition award for bloggers who inspire readers by promoting positivity and bringing joy. Thank you, Snigdha Dekafrom The Soul Searcher, for nominating me back. Although it takes me a while to complete these awards, I still like to finish the ones that are awarded to me personally. 

I highly recommend that you follow The Soul Searcher if you haven’t done so already. She is very optimistic and aspires to accomplish amazing things in her life. For instance, she is currently working on obtaining her Ph.D. in the Department of Humanities and Social Sciences while balancing life with leisurely hobbies to include poetry, reading, cooking, and baking to name a few! You go, girl! 💁


🌞Sunshine Blogger Award Rules🌞

The Sunshine Blogger Award has rules (surprise, surprise!). These rules ensure the success of this award, providing exposure to all the award winners. The rules are quite simple and straightforward.

Rules for Award:

  • Thank the person who nominated you and provide a link back to their blog so others can find them.
  • Answer the 11 questions asked by the blogger who nominated you.
  • Nominate 11 other bloggers and ask them 11 new questions.
  • Notify the nominees about it by commenting on one of their blog posts. ← I don’t leave comments on their blog posts anymore because it’s spammy. Instead, I tag them in this post so that they will receive a notification about the nomination. 
  • List the rules and display a Sunshine Blogger Award logo on your post and/or your blog site.

Questions I was asked:

1. What motivated you to start blogging and still inspires you to blog? I wanted to get away from Facebook and needed a safe place to vent to the world while making sense of my life through writing. A blog seemed like the most logical outlet for my needs. Also, I had previously used WordPress for a project at university, so I already knew how to use this platform when I started blogging. [copied answer from Sunshine Blogger Award 2.0]

2. Which is your favourite book and why? I like self-help books but I don’t really have a preference. The one book that I would recommend to anyone who wants to better themselves is, “You Are a Badass: How to Start Doubting Your Greatness and Start Living an Awesome Life” by Jen Sincero. However, there are many books just like this one on the market.

img_3565

Look familiar? I used the same image for Sunshine Blogger Award 2.0 

3. Which is that one song currently stuck in your head? The Peppa Pig Theme Song. Peppa Pig is my daughter’s favourite show so it’s usually playing on TV at my house.

4. Three things you would love to do on a rainy day? Yesterday was a rainy day. I started working on the Sunshine Blogger Award 4.0 rough draft because I had time. Later that day, my husband came home and we decided to make strawberry shortcake! Since he wanted to use the desktop computer, I was unable to complete the rough draft, hence why I am working on finishing the questions today. We still needed exercise and usually, we go for a walk outside. However, it was still raining, so we spent time at the mall yesterday evening. 

P1060381

Delicious homemade strawberry shortcake in all of its glory.

5. What is the one food in the world that you cannot live without? Fruit! I love all kinds of fruit. If Fruitarianism was an option for me, I would totally be one. #30BAD

img_1188

Look familiar? I used the same image for Sunshine Blogger Award 2.0

6. If you could travel somewhere right now, where would it be? Right now, I would like to travel to Singapore again and spend a couple of weeks in the tropics. I am tired of the cold, rainy weather in Canada.

P1050644

Sentosa Island, Singapore | Summer 2018

7. Which do you like more – Dreams or Reality? I am a realist so I see things for how they are in the present moment. As much as I like dreams, dreams aren’t real until we make them real by turning our dreams into reality. At the end of the day, we should appreciate reality for what it is, regardless of what your reality happens to be. Here is the definition of a realist, according to Urban Dictionary:

Realists have a firm grip on reality and can see things for what they are, not what they are told they are. Realists have their own views and do not fall victim to propaganda, misconception, or titles!

1. There is the Pessimist who believes the glass is half empty!

2. There is the Optimist who believes the glass is half full!

3. Then there is the Realist who knows it is just half a fucking glass!

8. Love in one word? Unconditional ❤️

9. What do you do to make yourself feel better when you are having a bad day? Usually, I make myself a mug of chai or orange pekoe tea and watch reruns of the Big Bang Theory.

10. Which is your most embarrassing childhood memory? I feel uncomfortable sharing this story on the internet. It has to do with Aunt Flo and a lack of female sanitary products while stuck in Quebec on a school trip. Nuff said. Period. [copied answer from Sunshine Blogger Award 3.0]

11. Three ways you would want to bring more happiness and peace to this world?

Capture1


🌞Sunshine Blogger Award Nominees🌞

https://newblogger20.wordpress.com/

https://laviedeuveeblog.wordpress.com/

https://bournemouthgirl.com/

https://selfcaresloth.wordpress.com/

https://sassycatlady.com/

https://retrospectivelily.com/

https://caffeinatedinlosangeles.com/

https://nicolesundays.wordpress.com/

https://renardsworld.wordpress.com/

https://rapturousretreat.wordpress.com/

https://gracethoroughgoodbeauty.wordpress.com/

Questions for the nominees:

1. Why did you decide to start a blog?
2. What year did you publish your first blog post?
3. What is your favorite blog post you’ve written and why?
4. Do you own a pet? If so, what kind?
5. Do you have any routines before you write a blog post?
6. What motivates you to write? Where do you find inspiration?
7. What is your favorite social media platform and why?
8. Are you a coffee or tea drinker?
9. What is the most valuable thing you’ve learned from blogging?
10. Are you satisfied with your blog’s progress so far?
11. What do you fear the most?

And….GO!! There is no pressure to respond to this nomination, as I know you have very busy lives outside of the blogging world. I look forward to reading your answers if you do decide to participate in the Sunshine Blogger Award. I am curious to know what your answers are! BTW, I am reusing the same questions I asked last time because I haven’t previously nominated these bloggers.

great-vibes.regular (1)

 

🌞The Sunshine Blogger Award 3.0🌞

Whoever is reading this post, thank you for taking time out of your day to connect with me! I hope you are all doing well. It’s time for yet another Sunshine Blogger Award! I had originally planned to split up the Sunshine Blogger Awards throughout the week but my laptop is unreliable right now. It keeps crashing on me every half-hour because there is something wrong with the cooling fan. 

screen-shot-2018-03-23-at-8-2116615623 (1)

The Sunshine Blogger Award is per recognition award for bloggers who inspire readers by promoting positivity and bringing joy. Thank you, Ilona, for nominating me for the Sunshine Blogger Award. This is the third award that I have been nominated for and I am excited to participate in the Q&A yet gain.

Ilona has a popular blog called easydiet.blog, and her blog is one of my personal favorites. She takes the time to connect with her readers and she’s a wonderful person. I feel a sense of belonging whenever I visit her blog and I also feel like I have known her for a long time, even though we haven’t met in person. If you haven’t already done so, you should go check out her blog. 🌻

sunshine-blogger-award-1024x679-1024x585-1

🌞Sunshine Blogger Award Rules🌞

The Sunshine Blogger Award has rules (surprise, surprise!). These rules ensure the success of this award, providing exposure to all the award winners. The rules are quite simple and straightforward.

Rules for Award:

  • Thank the person who nominated you and provide a link back to their blog so others can find them.
  • Answer the 11 questions asked by the blogger who nominated you.
  • Nominate 11 other bloggers and ask them 11 new questions.
  • Notify the nominees about it by commenting on one of their blog posts.
  • List the rules and display a Sunshine Blogger Award logo on your post and/or your blog site.

QUESTIONS I WAS ASKED:

1. How does the person develop a personality over time? Personally, I believe that we are born with our personalities (nature), and our personalities are shaped through childhood experiences (nurture). Many people may argue that we cannot change our personalities over time and I agree with this statement. However, I also believe that we can change our personalities through personal development and self-awareness which happens over time.

4

This used to be my desktop background so I could look at it every day as a reminder to aim high.

2. Do you have a dream to chase? Yes, I have spent a few years chasing after my dream of working in the field of health care. Even though it is taking much longer than I had intended due to unforeseen circumstances, I still plan on becoming a RN eventually.

I am not in love with my stethoscope and wish I would have chosen mauve or hot pink instead of raspberry. ¯\_(ツ)_/¯

3. Are you really doing, what you would like to do in life? Not yet. I thought I would have established a career by now or have a full-time job in the health care industry. I already have a B.Sc. in biology and I have been taking university courses since 2010. These days, I am a stay at home mom (SAHM) who feels unfulfilled and stuck in life. Even worse, I am unable to accomplish my other long-term goals because of a failed semester. It’s super frustrating because I am not getting the results I want! 💢

4. Are you afraid to make mistakes? If so, why? Yes. I am afraid of making mistakes because I am afraid of making the wrong choices. Sometimes, failure to take any action whatsoever only makes the situation worse. I have one more chance to go back to school next January, but a part of me wants to ditch the dream of becoming a nurse in case it doesn’t work out.

5. Do you react to other people’s actions or do you choose your own actions? I react to other people’s actions most of the time. Rudeness and entitlement really rub me the wrong way, and I am not hesitant to block people on social media if they piss me off.

6. Is there something that you know you have to let go, but you can’t? I have to let go of the anger I have towards certain people and stop playing the victim. Having anger and bitterness towards them does not make the situation any better. The negative feelings are ultimately hurting ME, so I need to let these thoughts go, and yet I struggle to let them go.

7. What makes you the happiest in your life? Why? Being free of depression and other negative thoughts. Part of the reason why I am on a journey towards self-actualization is to figure out how to rewire my brain and stop these negative-thinking loops. Guided meditation helps me escape these negative thoughts, if only for a moment.

8. Would you like to be famous? Being famous brings additional problems and burdens mainly driven by ego and greed. I would like to be remembered for being authentic and humble. Fame is still a possibility, but I wouldn’t want to famous for the reasons that most people want to be famous.

 9. The most embarrassing moment of your life? I feel uncomfortable sharing this story on the internet. It has to do with Aunt Flo and a lack of female sanitary products while stuck in Quebec on a school trip. Nuff said. Period.

10. Do you have any superstition? I believe that I will attract good health, longevity, truth, and fidelity for every 1000 paper cranes that I fold. I don’t know how many paper cranes I have made in my lifetime, but it’s probably a few thousand. If you would like to learn more about this superstition, you can read about the 1000 Cranes Legend.

Some of the paper cranes that I folded for a school project.

11. What you don’t like about yourself? I struggle with body dysmorphic disorder (BDD) and I hate the way my body looks. You may or may not know this about me, but I was anorexic when I was 14 years old which was triggered by bullying, depression, and feelings of inadequacy. I especially hate my smile and can’t stand it when people bug me for selfies. I also hate my big forehead. It hurts my feelings when people make fun of the way I look.


🌞Sunshine Blogger Award Nominees🌞

https://mbodypower479768866.wordpress.com

https://gagsblog.com

https://trystwithmind.wordpress.com

https://stevescountry.com

https://whenanintrovertspeaks.home.blog

https://michellewriterblog.wordpress.com

https://changedlife365.net

https://lifesfinewhine.wordpress.com

https://hopescorner.home.blog

https://musingsandroses.wordpress.com

https://thetalesofateenagebrunette.wordpress.com

Questions for the nominees:

1. Why did you decide to start a blog?
2. What year did you publish your first blog post?
3. What is your favorite blog post you’ve written and why?
4. Do you own a pet? If so, what kind?
5. Do you have any routines before you write a blog post?
6. What motivates you to write? Where do you find inspiration?
7. What is your favorite social media platform and why?
8. Are you a coffee or tea drinker?
9. What is the most valuable thing you’ve learned from blogging?
10. Are you satisfied with your blog’s progress so far?
11. What do you fear the most?

And….GO!! There is no pressure to respond to this nomination, as I know you have very busy lives outside of the blogging world. I look forward to reading your answers if you do decide to participate in the Sunshine Blogger Award. I am curious to know what your answers are! 

great-vibes.regular (1)

 

🌞The Sunshine Blogger Award 2.0🌞

Whoever is reading this post, thank you for taking time out of your day to connect with me! I hope you are all doing well. In case you missed my last post, you can read all about it here: My Favourite Things.

screen-shot-2018-03-23-at-8-2116615623 (1)

The Sunshine Blogger Award is per recognition award for bloggers who inspire readers by promoting positivity and bringing joy. Thank you, Stay Alive, for nominating me for the Sunshine Blogger Award. This is the second award that I have been nominated for and I am excited to participate in the Q&A yet gain.

sunshineStay Alive runs a popular blog called reaosons2stayhome, which is a fairly new blog that has recently gained momentum in the blogging community. I am not surprised considering that this blog speaks to many people who suffer from depression and anxiety. The purpose of Stay Alive is exactly what the blog implies – to stay alive by finding purpose in your life and a reason to live. 

🌞Sunshine Blogger Award Rules🌞

The Sunshine Blogger Award has rules (surprise, surprise!). These rules ensure the success of this award, providing exposure to all the award winners. The rules are quite simple and straightforward.

Rules for Award:

  • Thank the person who nominated you and provide a link back to their blog so others can find them.
  • Answer the 11 questions asked by the blogger who nominated you.
  • Nominate 11 other bloggers and ask them 11 new questions.
  • Notify the nominees about it by commenting on one of their blog posts.
  • List the rules and display a Sunshine Blogger Award logo on your post and/or your blog site.

Question I was asked by Stay Alive:

1. If there was absolutely nothing stopping you, what would you do to make this world a better place? I would ensure that people have access to clean water and as well as food security. Most of the world lacks access to these basic needs as people continue to die from starvation and preventable infections caused by contaminated water. Considering that first world countries have an abundance of food and access to clean, running water, I personally think that it pathetic that wealthy countries are so full of greed and people care more about how many likes their Instagram photo has. Meanwhile, there are impoverished people in this world who are struggling just to stay alive.

Stay Alive asked a great question! I personally enjoy answering questions, so I am also including Ilona’s questions to make my replies a bit more interesting. Ilona’s blog is very inspiring and optimistic. If you don’t follow her blog already, you should definitely check out her blog for her latest updates at https://easydiet.blog/


Questions asked by Ilona:

1. Tell me two things that prompted you to start a blog? I wanted to get away from Facebook and needed a safe place to vent to to the world while making sense of my life through writing. A blog seemed like the most logical outlet for my needs. Also, I had previously used WordPress for a project in university, so I already knew the how to use this platform when I started blogging.

2. What is the happiest day in your life? This is a hard question to answer since I am fortunate to have had more than one “happiest day” in my life so far. I was happy when I met my now husband, when we got married, and when our daughter was born. My answers are so cliché but these are my most memorable moments. [copied answer from Sunshine Blogger Award 1.0]

3.What absolutely excites you right now? I don’t really have much to be excited about these days, but if I had to choose something, it would be the progress that I am making with my weight loss. I would like to wear crop tops and bikinis this summer, which I believe is possible if I continue to stick to my diet consisting mostly of unprocessed, anti-inflammatory foods.

img_1188.jpg

You can live frugally and still eat well! Be sure to check out 7 Ways to Stop Wasting Money

4. What’s the most important thing I should know about you? I suffer from depression and I am currently seeking help. I do not let depression define who I am as a person. I also feel like depression allows us to play victim and throw pity parties for ourselves which is NOT what I intend to do with this blog. Sometimes, we are just dealt a bad hand in life but that does not mean that we should continue to using the same crappy cards dealt to us over and over again.

img_3458

My depression was bad last weekend. I only took this photo because someone was bugging me for a selfie.

5. What are you currently reading? I am not reading any books at the moment. Sometimes I will casually skim through “You Are a Badass: How to Start Doubting Your Greatness and Start Living an Awesome Life” by Jen Sincero.

img_3565.jpg

My book looks beaten up because it has traveled with me to Singapore and back.

6. What do you think is the driving force in your life? I was put on this planet to heal people. I don’t know how exactly, but I know that I am supposed to be a healer in this life. I used to interpret this as a future nutritionist, but fate did not work out that way. Now, I am interpreting this calling as a registered nurse. However, I have faced several challenges trying to achieve my goal of becoming a nurse. I still don’t know how to interpret the role of a healer or what I am truly passionate about.

7. What’s the best thing that’s happened to you this year/month/week? Honestly, not much. I am literally at a standstill in life and feel like I have hit a brick wall. There isn’t anything that I have to look forward to right now except $1 iced coffee all summer, if that counts.

8. If you had the opportunity to meet one person you haven’t met, who would it be, why, and what would you talk about? I would like to meet a girl I met online who I’ve known for several years now. We used to admin Facebook Pages together back when I was still using Facebook. She recently started a blog called https://sadlonelybutterfly.wordpress.com/ and I encourage you to check our her blog. One day, my husband and I will probably have the opportunity to visit her and I’m sure we will talk about many things. I would like to meet her family and her boyfriend. Right now, we call each other on the phone and talk for hours at a time. Since we both enjoy video games and anime, I can see us binging on our favorite pastimes when we meet each other in real life.

9. Who is your role model? A family friend who I grew up with and happens to live in the same city as me. We don’t hang out that much anymore. She basically has the life I want and I envy her. I am also a bit jealous of her which is something I know stems from my own insecurities. I never told her that she is my role model.

10. If you could know the absolute and total truth to one question, what question would you ask? Can science prove the existence of God?

11. How can I be most helpful to you right now? I am not sure how to interpret this question. It would help if you read my blog. Also, be sure to “like” this post if you enjoyed reading it. All of your feedback is helpful and comments are welcome. It helps to know what my fellow readers would like to see more of in future posts.


🌞Sunshine Blogger Award Nominees🌞

https://minimalismmyway.com/

https://biblionyan.com/

https://beautybeyondbones.com/

https://bealright.blog/

https://simpleula.com/

https://theintrospectivescribbleronline.wordpress.com/

https://soulsearcher.life/

https://stiinamarie.wordpress.com/

https://sadlonelybutterfly.wordpress.com/

https://www.blessingsbyme.com/

https://mywellbeingandlearningjourney.wordpress.com/

Questions for the nominees:

1. Why did you decide to start a blog?
2. What year did you publish your first blog post?
3. What is your favourite thing about blogging?
4. Do you own a pet? If so, what kind?
5. Do you have any routines before you write a blog post?
6. What motivates you to write? Where do you find inspiration?
7. What country do you live in?
8. Are you a coffee or tea drinker?
9. Are you a morning person or a night person?
10. What languages do you speak?
11. What do you fear the most?

And….GO!! There is no pressure to respond to this nomination, as I know you have very busy lives outside of the blogging world. I look forward to reading your answers if you do decide to participate in the Sunshine Blogger Award. I am curious to know what your answers are! BTW, I am reusing the same questions I asked last time because I haven’t previously nominated these bloggers.

great-vibes.regular (1)

 

🌞The Sunshine Blogger Award🌞

Whoever is reading this post, thank you for taking time out of your day to connect with me! I hope you are all doing well. In case you missed my last post, I have been dealing with depression but I don’t want it to prevent me from writing. I’m determined to fight my demons through writing, which is a therapeutic outlet for me. 

screen-shot-2018-03-23-at-8-2116615623 (1)

The Sunshine Blogger Award is per recognition award for bloggers who inspire readers by promoting positivity and bringing joy. Thank you, Ilona, for nominating me. Ilona runs a popular blog called easydiet.blog which has become popular since she first launched it. I feel like I can resonate with Ilona on many levels because she speaks from her heart and takes the time to connect with her readers. Even though we live miles away from each other, it doesn’t feel like we are separated by distance. 

Ilona’s blog is very inspiring and optimistic! If you don’t follow her blog already, you should definitely check out her blog.


🌞Sunshine Blogger Award Rules🌞

The Sunshine Blogger Award has rules (surprise, surprise!). These rules ensure the success of this award, providing exposure to all the award winners. The rules are quite simple and straightforward.

Rules for Award:

  • Thank the person who nominated you and provide a link back to their blog so others can find them.
  • Answer the 11 questions asked by the blogger who nominated you.
  • Nominate 11 other bloggers and ask them 11 new questions.
  • Notify the nominees about it by commenting on one of their blog posts.
  • List the rules and display a Sunshine Blogger Award logo on your post and/or your blog site.

Questions I was asked:

1. What do you enjoy most in blogging? I enjoy connecting with other bloggers because I feel like I am a part of something bigger. I also feel like I belong in this community and the atmosphere seems much more positive and inviting compared to other platforms (I’m looking at you, Facebook).

2. What has been your most successful blog post and why do you think it was such a success? I am not sure which blog post is most successful, but I am guessing that it is probably Life is Not All Sunshine and Rainbows since it seemed to get the most likes and comments. This is the also the first blog post where I openly wrote about depression.

3. What was your happiest moment in life so far? This is a hard question to answer since I am fortunate to have had more than one “happiest moment” in my life. I was happy when I met my now husband, when we got married, and when our daughter was born. My answers are so cliché but these are my most memorable moments.

WhatsApp Image 2018-06-14 at 7.05.57 PM

My daughter enjoying the sunflowers at her grandparents’ house. 🌻

4. What is your little wish you would like to come through the soonest? I wish for things to get better in 2019. So far, it’s been a rough year for me and I would really like to see big improvements. I am sick and tired of feeling “stuck” in life. This is a quarter-life crisis maybe?

5. A day on the beach or a day exploring a city? I burn easily in the sun so a day exploring a city!

6. Where would you like to travel next? Japan.

7. What is your favourite season and why? I am an August baby so summer has always been my favourite season. I also like summer because this season promotes relaxation unless you work/study year-round. Even summer semesters seem more relaxed.

8. Eating what food brings to you some happy memories about your childhood? My oma makes the best cakes and desserts. Her cakes are mouthwatering and delectable. She still makes them but I live across the country, so I cannot enjoy them sadly.

Quick German lesson: Oma means grandmother & Opa means grandfather.

9. Who is your favourite historical character and why? I never really cared for history. Terry Fox is not my favourite historic figure but I remember him well because we had to do this Terry Fox run every Friday in elementary school. And to make things worse, it was timed and graded.

10. What is the piece of music that brings back to your happy memories? Wind of Change by the Scorpions. My dad told me that I had the entire song memorized by age 4. My best memory is singing this song in his Volkswagen with the windows rolled down.

11. If you could go back in time when would you like to live? I prefer to live in the present, not in the past.


🌞Sunshine Blogger Award Nominees🌞

https://humanityliveson.home.blog/

https://popsiclesociety.com/

https://grieftolife.com/

https://joypassiondesire.com/

https://existentialergonomics.com/

https://groundinggrowth.com/

https://jazminheavenblog.com/

https://opinionatingblog.wordpress.com/

https://millenniallifecrisis.org/

https://coffeennotes.wordpress.com/

https://fightmsdaily.com/

Questions for the nominees:

1. Why did you decide to start a blog?
2. What year did you publish your first blog post?
3. What is your favourite thing about blogging?
4. Do you own a pet? If so, what kind?
5. Do you have any routines before you write a blog post?
6. What motivates you to write? Where do you find inspiration?
7. What country do you live in?
8. Are you a coffee or tea drinker?
9. Are you a morning person or a night person?
10. What languages do you speak?
11. What do you fear the most?

And….GO!! There is no pressure to respond to this nomination, as I know you have very busy lives outside of the blogging world. I look forward to reading your answers if you do decide to participate in the Sunshine Blogger Award. I am curious to know what your answers are! 

great-vibes.regular (1)

 

Boundaries Matter

 

What are boundaries and why does it matter? 
Everyone should have their own set of explicit rules regarding personal boundaries. Personal boundaries include material boundaries, physical boundaries, mental boundaries, emotional boundaries, and even sexual boundaries. Personally, I know people who have a lack of personal boundaries which translates into a lack of respect for themselves. I also know generous people who are easily taken advantage of and are unable to stick up for themselves. On the opposite end of the spectrum, there are people who have a very firm understanding of their boundaries and ultimately, respect themselves and their personal rights. In an ideal world, we should all learn how to stick up for ourselves when our boundaries are crossed. We should also learn how to let go of toxic friends who are sucking the energy and joy out of our lives. For the majority of my life, I was easily taken advantage of because I am a people pleaser by default. I was afraid of losing friends if I were to upset them in any way. Being blunt towards a crappy friend is a messy process and it is probably going to hurt you in one way or another. This is all part of growing up and behaving like an adult, and it’s time that we start being adults.

Settling for crappy friends is better than being alone, right?
I let people take advantage of me for years and still have a very hard time standing up for myself. To this day, I don’t like confronting people face to face but have no problems sending a very blunt email or letter. Over the years, however, I learned that being a doormat in order to please others is actually harmful to my psyche. Just like being taken advantage of is a learned behavior, learning to stick up for yourself because you actually respect yourself is also a learned behavior – and a much healthier one!

If something doesn’t feel right, then why do you keep doing it?
After pondering this question for years, I have concluded that if something is causing you pain, then the best thing to do is to walk away. Often times, people do not want to change themselves and you cannot expect them to change for you. You can rip the bandage off now or peel the bandage off slowly, but it has to come off. You need to set yourself free of these toxic people. The initial pain of cutting them out of your life will hurt, but you are doing yourself a huge favor by practicing self-care.

ootorii1-big

Image: http://visit-miyajima-japan.com/en/culture-and-heritage/spiritual-heritage-temples-shrines/le-torii-flottant.html

It’s Not Me, It’s YOU!

These people face many problems of their own and likely come from broken pasts. We all have problems and deep psychological issues but the difference between us and them is our level of self-awareness and our ability to take full responsibility for our actions. Usually, these people are initially harmless and probably want someone who will give them the time of day, but the biggest conflict arises when they translate your kindness as some kind of love interest or booty call. This topic is taboo for me, and I do not want to pursue a friendship with anyone who believes that I am sexually available. I am a married woman and I feel that Millenials don’t take marriage as seriously as previous generations. Despite that, what really sickens me is the lack of respect for not only myself but also my marriage. The most frustrating aspect of this type of friendship occurs when [he] continues to seek validation by questioning whether or not I’m still friends with [him]. You should know where you stand with me, and if you can sense that I am annoyed, then you should be aware that you’re being a tool. This type of behavior becomes toxic when the person continues to cling to you like cat hair and continues to seek your approval regarding their thoughts and actions. They may ask you questions like, “Is this okay/Am I good enough/What do you think of… etc.?” as a way to confirm that their thoughts and actions are in line with yours. And if they frequently rub you the wrong way by saying or doing disturbing things on a daily/weekly basis, prepare for the avalanche of “I’m sorr[ies].” When adults make mistakes, we handle these issues on an emotional, and conscious level. “I’m sorry” is the shallowest form of an apology and lacks any kind of deeper meaning, especially on a mature level.

Guilt and Resentment

Anger and anxiety are usually the first indicators that something is wrong in a platonic friendship. To this day, I still struggle with feelings of guilt and resentment towards people who have wronged me. I hate tension and dislike upsetting people even if they may be toxic in the long-run. By walking away, I am not only setting myself free from pain but I am also setting the other person free from being misled by an unauthentic friendship that I have established with them. In this way, I am setting them free from being misled. Instead of enduring several more months or even years of anger, guilt, and resentment, I can rip off the bandage now and start healing today. This healing process starts as soon as you have walked away from the toxic parasite.

Tsunami_by_hokusai_19th_century

The Great Wave off Kanagawa | Taken from Wikipedia.org

When will you know when it is time to let them go? 
If you tell someone time and time again to back off, and they still don’t get it or can’t take the hint, it is okay to excuse yourself and walk away from the friendship. It is okay to nicely tell them that you cannot stay friends with them because they repeatedly disrespect your boundaries and that you feel uncomfortable being around them. If someone crosses my line, whether it’s through inappropriate actions or vulgar language, then I will question my friendship with this person. Often, I give people too many chances with the hopes that they will somehow smarten up and start treating me with respect. Sadly, these people are unlikely to change their ways because they don’t think anything is wrong with their behavior. Remember, disrespect is a learned behavior, but that does not exempt them from being a shitty friend because their personality sucks. Moral of the story: Find better friends.

great-vibes.regular (1)

 

 

 

Pandora’s Box

It has finally happened. All of the sleepless nights I spent wondering whatever happened to Jenna* became very clear but only for a millisecond. I had forgotten that I buried Pandora’s Box under a pile of 0’s and 1’s, hidden in a place where boredom and curiosity finally revealed it for all its worth. In other words, I didn’t realize that I had access to her gossip and haterade. I had completely forgotten that we were still “friends” in that realm which meant I would be able to see her entire profile. However, whether or not it was my Guardian Angels or God, they protected me at that very moment. Reflexively, I deleted Pandora’s Box, where it will ultimately remain out of my reach forever, and I did this without thinking, without comprehending what had just happened. I only realized what I had done seconds later. Without reading all of the FOMO that I could have feasted my eyes upon tonight, everything vanished before curiosity could even kill the cat. In the end, I didn’t get to see or read anything, which is the irony of it all.

Spoiler alert: the cat is very much alive. Here I was, so close to getting what I wanted, and when I finally had the chance to read her latest gossip like a kid in a candy shop, I had banished it before my eyes like a parent to my inner child.

Did I do this subconsciously out of anger and loathing?

Or did I do this because, at that very moment, a spirit much larger than humankind decided to protect me? But what does this even mean?

Was there something in Pandora’s Box that would have deeply hurt me had I read it? I mean, JD hurt me terribly, and I am still trying to move on in order live a life free of drama.

But what exactly was in her box that I needed to be protected from?

Perhaps, if I am being protected for my own good, then this realization makes me even more curious about what was in Pandora’s Box. At the same time, this eye-opening experience is a reminder that I must remove my washed-up digital footprint from the universe so that another rendezvous like this one won’t happen again. People say that whatever you share online lasts forever, so if that statement is true, I will finally remove my past by locking it up for good and throwing away the key so that nobody, including myself, will have access to it.

pexels-photo-326616

Jenna* is no her real name. The name has been changed because of #confidentiality