Nothing beats the crisp autumn breeze on campus. Time for the comfort of your favorite sweater and cuddling with that cozy blanket that has a way of making things feel just right. It’s times like these that remind me to stop and notice all the beauty around me. It’s a struggle to stop walking around with blinders on, rushing from once place to another. It’s too easy to get sucked into whatever it is I am doing or worrying about. But life really truly is too short and beautiful to wake up and one day and realize you sleepwalked through most of it. I intend to stop and look around throughout each day, to not allow myself to get lost in the craziness inside my head. I want to notice and appreciate the everyday things that make life worth living that often go unnoticed. It’s time I take the blinders off.
This past weekend I attended the first ever Life is Beautiful Festival in downtown Las Vegas. It was absolutely amazing! The festival consisted of a compilation of art, food, and music. It’s difficult not to be inspired by all the creativity that was all around. It turns out the event drew a lot of hipsters and quirky people with their unique styles. Part of the fun was sitting back and watching everyone jump from place to place. The whole experience was not just super fun but also served as one of those life affirming experiences.
The October weather is barely starting to cool down hot Vegas so the weather was perfect. It was nice and windy which helped when I was standing with thousands of people packed as tightly as matches. I took in the entire experience open arms. I let the beat of the music sink deep in my soul as I felt the beat vibrate through my body and felt the thumps deep within my chest. I was even fine with stuff that would have upset me any other time like getting beer spilled on me and getting kicked in the head by a crowd surfer. I didn’t care; I was just happy to be there amongst the excited, crazy crowd listening to amazingly talented bands. We swayed back and forth to the slow songs and jumped up and down to the beat of the upbeat songs.
The highlight of the event for me was The Killer’s performance. My sisters and I stood for over five hours waiting in-between performances for the Killer’s the play. They were the last performance of the event. We learned quickly on that to keep yourself from trouble you went were the crowd pushed you, and for us that was forward. Right before The Killers performed we moved up to the front of the crowd. I was two people away from the front. I could not believe it! When The Killers finally came on I was right there within close view. So close in fact, that when Brandon Flowers came off the stage to say hi to his fans I got to touch him! I sang my heart out to all my favorite songs with the rest of the crowd. So much so that my throat is still sore from that.
And if all that wasn’t good enough I had one of my dreams come true. This might be a silly dream but who says dreams have to meet certain specifications? At the culmination of an amazing song that had the crowd going wild, a blast of confetti rained on the audience. I looked up and saw the night sky fill with sparkles. I smile stretched across my face as I saw a sea of adrenalized people going mad and the confetti dancing above me. That moment took my breath away and made me realize that life is too short to not make time for those moments that do just that.
Sixteen men- five minutes each. I met so many people in such a short, condensed amount of time. It was fun, awkward and entertaining all at the same time. I surprised myself because I was much more social and open with people than I usually am. This experience served the purpose I wanted it to; I got practice feeling more comfortable with people I just met.
I had fun getting to know different people and felt comforted to see that there are many people out there looking to meet the right person. Unfortunately I tend to fall in the “poor me” trap sometimes and think no one else is going through what I am going through. The truth is that many people are single and looking. Many people get nervous when getting to know someone new. My situation is no novelty.
I felt reassured in a way to see how may people were out trying this speed dating thing in the hopes of finding someone special. I came out of the experience feeling so proud of myself for having had the guts to follow through with it. To be honest, I went to sleep the night before the event thinking, “What the heck was I thinking? I don’t want to do this!” It was not a big deal though and I am very glad I did it.
Incase any one is wondering if I met someone that I was interested in- yes I did. There were two guys that I felt I had a connection with. They were around my age, they seemed respectful and had jobs. They did not feel the same way though. The way that speed dating event works is that after the event you login to the site and make your decisions. If there are two people that said yes, their information is shared automatically. I had not mutual matches so I came out as single as I had come in. It was not big deal. I am learning to not take it personally when people are not interested. I’m sure there is someone out there that will appreciate me.
I still had a great time. I don’t regret doing it one bit. I met some nice girls that I had a couple of drinks with before and I went on more “dates” than I ever had. I met many different people and practiced my social skills. I got what I was looking for so I am very happy with my decision to go through with it and try something way out of my comfort zone.
Here are the two most eccentric questions I was asked:
1. What is your favorite dinasour? I could not think of a type of dinosaur for the life of me. This was just such a random question. He patiently waited for me to respond but I had nothing.
2. Are you a sexual person? Um… this one caught me off guard. I was dumbfounded by his straightforwardness and his lack of manners. I was done with that mini date after that.
Have a great weekend everyone!!!
I have always loved the quote that says, “Do one thing everyday that scares you.” It seems to me that people that have really interesting, fun, lives are those that have the guts to try new things that they are scared of. Living by this quote has been my new year’s resolution in the past, but up until recently I have not steered too far into the things I fear, but tonight I am going to be doing something that has always scared me.
I am not the easiest person to get to know, because I tend to try and protect myself from possibly getting rejected or hurt, by shutting people away. Not good. I am ready to work on that and to let myself relax around people I might be interested in getting to know better, and the best way I can think to do that is by getting as much practice as I can getting to know people.
That’s why I have decided to go on a speed dating event tonight. I have been curious about this for a while and it has always seemed like a very intimidating thing to do which is what makes this the perfect thing to try. I will get to practice another skill that I am really lacking which is the awkward small talk phase. I have opted in the past to avoid this phase at all costs, but now I will be doing just that, multiple times in one night.
I am excited to just live a new experience. I already feel more confident and happy with myself for the mere fact that I am going to do this. My hope is that by trying things that truly scare me I will become more confident and live a fuller life. I would hate to let fear stop me from living the life I want. I want to prove to myself that I can grow and become a better person by doing the things that scare me. I’ll let you know how it goes.
I know the title might sound a bit dramatic to some but there is no better way to describe what these past few months have been to me. In my last post I mentioned how I had a drastic change in my life. I quit my job, started a teaching internship and have had to deal with much higher educational demands than ever before. The result was a worn out girl who began to second guess anything and everything she did. I had an official shutdown and it was painfully terrible. And what was culprit of this shutdown? My extremely irrational, yet stubborn fear of expressing what goes in my mind.
I have realized through these tough times that I would rather put out safe ideas, pretend not to know, pretend not to care, fade into the background, than risk expressing myself only to find out that it is not good enough. Who is this judge that gives the verdict anyways? I don’t know and yet I have been living in fear of this “judge” for as long as I can remember. I guess the judge would be anyone that could disapprove, dislike or think something is stupid that I put out. This judge, I guess, is anything or anyone that can somehow confirm to me that I am in fact not good enough.
That’s why it was so terrifying to me to hear that I needed to share my writing with others (which just so happens to be one of the things I care about the most which increased my fear of sharing it by 1000). That meant I had to open up to the world and let people in on what goes on my head. Terrifying! I have been flying under the radar, quietly observing and reflecting for so long in peace. Now I was being thrown out to share my thoughts with many, many people several times a week, which left me feeling like I could break down any minute.
I dont know why I have always had such a fear of expressing myself. I have always just been a fairly private person. I am the definition of an introvert and this sharing was driving me nuts. Thank God, I stuck with it though. I dragged myself to class everyday. I stayed up late writing and rewriting presentations and running through my presentations before anyone woke up while I drank my morning coffee. I sat through classes, dreading the moment I would be called up, sweating bullets, yet showing the demeanor of a calm, uninterested person (sooo far from the truth!) while I finally gave my presentations. The thing is I stuck with it even though my anxiety was telling me I had run for cover and hide or ELSE. I’m still not sure what the “else” is. All I know is that it is damn scary and it’s stopped me from doing things many times before.
I have shared more and put myself out there more than I ever have in my whole life in these past 2 months. It’s been very difficult but I am truly starting to see leaps of improvement all of the sudden and I could not be more excited. I am becoming more relaxed about the idea of saying things that are wrong or that people wont agree with or like. It is my opinion and therefor should be worth sharing just like everyone else does. I have also become much more relaxed and confident while giving presentations. I still feel nervous but at least I feel a lot more comfortable standing in front of people. I even went so far as to enjoy myself while I gave my presentation this morning which is a definite first!
I know that there is still a long road to travel but I am very happy to know that I am on that road. Sometimes I am running by, other times I am walking and sometimes the best I can do is crawl along, but I am advancing. I am getting better. I am slowly chipping away at the protective shell I built around me that has been harming me more than helping me. I am beginning to get a taste of what it feels like to express who I am and it feels delightful. I will continue exploring different aspects of who I am and letting my creativity and self come through. I can’t imagine anything feeling better.
I have had the same goal in my mind for years: To become more open and confident in myself. I am used to second guessing myself all the time, to sitting in the back of the classroom and keeping to myself because I don’t want to say something that sounds stupid. So I’ve spent my life quietly on the sidelines, admiring the people that are able to express themselves so openly.
I have recently gone through a lot of changes in my life. The comfort of working in a place where everyone knows and respects me and where I know the job like the back of my palms is all gone. I resigned in order to be able to complete my teaching internship, which is required to get my teaching license. I am now planning on substitute teaching the days I wont be in the internship.
I don’t know this new job at all and to be honest and I am very afraid of getting out there and learning it. It’s pretty much going to be a sink or swim process when I substitute teach. I am terrified of losing control of the classroom or of sounding dumb in front of a classroom full of students. But I know it is going to help me become a better teacher in the future and will be my source of income for the time being.
I am also taking 15 credits this semester. The classes are more demanding than the ones I have taken in the past and are very heavy on classroom participation, projects, collaboration and presentations. Sitting quietly in the back of the classroom is no longer an option. Between the teaching internship which requires me to teach a classroom full of super smart senior AP students and my college classes, I have been pulled out of my comfort zone so many times in the short week since the semester started, that I feel absolutely drained of all my energy.
The first day of all this mess, I even considered quitting. I was trying to think why I thought teaching would be a good idea in the first place when it required so much public speaking which is something I have never liked. My anxiety has been flaring up like crazy and my self-doubt is at an all time high. Even worse yet, the combination of these two things has made the perfect environment for depression to make a guest appearance too. In short, I am a mess.
I have surprised myself with my childish reaction to all this “newness”. I have found myself crying in the car on the way to school wishing I could just go back to the way things used to be. Hesitating coming in class and taking long “restroom brakes” hoping class will end faster. My mind has been screaming at me to retreat since I started this. But comfort has never been the way to progress. I wanted to become more open… this is most definitely a way to become more open. The world has a funny way of making things happen. I know that the more I put myself out there and the more I participate, the more natural it will become to me and the easier it will get.
It’s just going to suck majorly until I get to that point. Right now I am still awkward when I do participate, I give very basic, bare minimum, safe answers out of fear of sounding dumb if I try to expand on my thoughts. But that’s ok. I have still talked to more people in my classes this past week than I have in the last two semesters combined. I know that this difficult time I am going through is all signaling growth. As long as I keep working at it, I know I will come out of this semester closer to the person I have been wanting to be. But until then, God help me.
I was recently nominated by Christine Blackwell for the Versatile Blogger Award and I could not be more excited. I am very happy to accept this award and am looking forward to continue blogging. Thank you Christine for the kind gesture!
The rules to accept the Award are the following:
- Display the award certificate on your blog.
- Make a post announcing your nomination and include a link to your nominator.
- Nominate 15 deserving bloggers and notify them by leaving them a comment.
- Post 7 interesting things about yourself.
Seven Interesting Things About Me:
(Not really that interesting but they will have to do :))
- Ever since coming back from China, I’ve been obsessed with neon colors.
- I am addicted to self help books.
- I am going on grand tour of Europe next summer!
- I love trying traditional foods from different cultures.
- I cannot parallel park for the life of me.
- My favorite movie is  Days of Summer.
- I love, love, love autumn.
Here are the 15 amazing bloggers I’ve nominated:
- The Bottom of a Bottle
- Pearls of Perception
- Living Minimalist
- My so Insta life
- Bucket List Publications
- Ben’s Bitter Blog
- Lucy’s Football
- Project Light to Life
- Bright Moments Catcher
- joyful cacophony