“Travel isn’t always pretty. It isn’t always comfortable. Sometimes it hurts, it even breaks your heart. But that’s okay. The journey changes you- it should change you. It leaves marks on your memory, on your consciousness, on your heart, and on your body. You take something with you… Hopefully, you leave something good behind.”

Anthony Bourdain

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je ne sais quoi

This phrase may be used often, but it can also mean so much. A quick web search says it’s “a quality or attribute that is difficult to express” or “intangible quality that makes something (or someone) distinctive or attractive.”  Everything about this phrase has kept me intrigued.

It’s a feeling that makes your gut feel good.  Somehow common occurrences or even uncomfortable situations feel….what’s the word? Amusing. Safe. Comfortable. Scintillating.

It’s what makes someone stand out.  That unique natural spark that makes their presence so striking.  Unintentionally and unknowingly, they presence is just so…………simply elegant.  They can be wearing the shabbiest of outfits, but still look royally attractive.  They can be dressed up and it would seem as if their outfit was specifically tailored for them.

It’s that magnetic quality that no matter how much force or how many times we try to go against it, we somehow keep getting back into that distinctive yet fascinating feeling.

Amusing isn’t it?  I’ve definitely been noticing it a lot more lately and am running out of words to make it real.

Je ne sais quoi…..that’s what makes magic happen (or at least I hope it does *wink).

30 is the new 20

I’m slowly moving on from all the “twenty something” articles to pre-30 articles. Obviously there will always be some sort of crisis for whatever phase of life we’re in, but this helps with the transition of moving on from the playful stage to a more decided stage. Sometimes, the best thing to do is to “just be.” Make the most of the present and keep moving forward.

forget the roses….

In today’s fast- paced world we are all so enamored of overnight success. It’s easy to get frustrated and feel like everyone is passing you by – especially in your 20s. When you stop and check what you have accomplished it can be a powerful push to keep moving on!

 “Imagine when you are laying a brick wall. Every brick feels like nothing. But at the end of the day you have 3 or 4 levels. At the end of the week it is incredible what you have done. Brick by brick. No one brick is earth-shattering…but it’s amazing what you have accomplished when you take a step back and look at it. We need more patience in our world today. We need patience for great ideas. When you have an overwhelming task or something that seems like it is not going anywhere…just break it down. In my day today — I will do x, y and z. It’s okay to be a turtle and walk slowly.”

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splurge

People often ask me when I plan to buy a new gadget or wardrobe accessory. Not all of them are luxuries, they’re essential in many ways too. I’m actually proud of myself for lasting this long without them. Believe me, I really do want them too.

Even though it can be a challenge, I will always opt to splurge on valued experiences rather than items that may be insignificant soon enough. It certainly has it’s disadvantages but none that I regret. Life’s meant to be enjoyed, not about having (or not having) enough.

enough is….enough

I’ve often thought about what it takes to be “good enough”. Not just for my own standards, but of others and on a general sense too. I’m not gonna lie, it is quite often that I try to measure myself or others up to this standard (which in itself is very loosely defined). That notion of “being the best we can be” has killed us in a sense. It’s made us fear failure, fear others, fear ourselves.  But really, we can undo failure, we choose to love/hate others, we define our outcome.

Anyway,  an article I recently read got me thinking…

“When you hear something and then repeat it internally, you’re accepting it. Worse still, when you hear something and silently sit and don’t refute it, you are accepting it.” “I just want to know that what I’m doing is enough. I always feel like it’s not enough. THAT is my personal utterance that becomes my silent truth. And the second I’ve said it, I’ve spoken it into existence.  No more. No more will I attribute failures to my flaws; they make me who I am. No more will I cry out to heaven in angry tears when I have so much to be grateful for.”

Because after all, “enough” is simply and largely that satisfaction of being able to go to bed each night with your soul at peace.

C’est la vie dear friends!

restless

If there’s anything most people know about me it’s that I tend to get restless easily. As much as I hesitate change, I also thrive on it. As much as I can be easily amused and extrovert, I enjoy solitude just as much. Needless to say, I’ve been more restless than usual lately. I can’t even pinpoint what it is. It feels like an internal battle of sorts, testing me, attacking me, questioning me. I sit still, I sit alone, yet my mind spins in a chaotic mess. I try my best to refocus and shut it out, yet it beckons louder and stronger. Ack!!!

I’m definitely not depressed, thank God I’ve grown out of that phase.

I’m definitely not stressed; thankfully, I’ve had a fair amount of work and play lately.

For the most part, I’ve been in a relatively upbeat mood. Except that I really don’t know where this strange uneasiness is coming from. It’s like my outer shell and my innermost being are at complete odds with each other and I don’t even know why. Or where to begin piecing it all together.

just the way you are

No, not the Bruno Mars song but another on-point Thought Catalog article.

The goal here should be about becoming comfortable in your own skin. The people I look up to the most aren’t the ones with a great spice rack and decorating scheme (those people are often more psycho than those who still sleep on a mattress on the floor) but the ones who have a sort of “effortlessness” to their personality and life. They feel lived in, comfortable with where they’re at. I love that. I want that and I know that one day I will have it. One day I will trust myself and love myself and not be ruled by so much anxiety and fear. I know I will because I see myself already changing and moving toward that.

It’s just about getting to a place of calm, of not constantly measuring yourself against others because I guarantee that if you do that, you’re always going to fall short.

subtractions that add value

If there’s anything I’ve learned, it’s that small things add up to bigger things really easily.  It works both ways – not only can little details turn out to be remarkable blessings; but little mistakes can also easily add up to bigger hassles.

So I figured I need to do an all around detoxification of sorts.  Not a tragic change since that can overwhelm me, but step by step methods that will help weed out the unnecessary and make way for much needed growth.

Step One

“If it wasn’t for money we’d all be rich” – did my accounting today and also unsubscribed from all my travel deal, groupon, living social etc emails.  Anything that would entice me to  unnecessarily spend.

Step Two

I’m limiting eating out as much as I can.  Aiming to do a 30 day no eating out challenge, but easing myself into it.

Will keep adding as I progress. So far so good.  It’s a lot of determination at this point.

the freedom to be you

I came across this article this morning and wow….it feels like an answer to a lot of questions.  Call it a life crisis if you will, but we all go through a phase of figuring out how to identify ourselves beyond the mud of expectations, reputation and stereotypes.  It certainly gets painful, overwhelming and mind-numbing;  but if we’re able to break free from that mold there’s so much freedom of expression and sincere happiness to be discovered.

Read through this article and you’ll know what I mean…