Tag Archives: Positivity

At Hope

hopeA few months ago I resolved to take a certain path in life, mostly relating to career, and more importantly, actually setting a life goal. I’ve rejected goal-setting for as long as I can remember.

Junior year in college I started hanging out with some new friends, who happened to be very ambitious people who had their lives neatly mapped out to include all kinds of tall orders, pies-in-the-sky and grand visions. I hadn’t thought much beyond next quarter’s class schedule, let alone life after college. I would listen in rapt fascination at their conviction, wondering if any of what they wanted was possible, and secretly dismissing their plans as grandiose, their future lives as boxed-in before they could begin. One time one of them said, “people without goals are losers. I simply can’t understand them.” Not long after that assertion the relationships ended and I parted ways with the group. There’s only so long a loser can hide out, before her lack of goals is revealed, her worth as a friend diminished. But to me they were the losers, setting everything up into tight patterns in advance, every detail accounted for. What about spontaneity? What about living for the moment? What about crisis, and life is messy, and shit doesn’t always go your way? These people knew nothing. I was the realist. Goal setting was out, because life smashes your plans and hope spirals down and away, and I was a cynic already at age twenty. Continue reading

Perception Is The Enemy Of The Good

percepI’m starting to come around to the idea that how we perceive our lives and daily reality contributes hugely to our happiness quotient. Have you ever looked back on a period of time in your life and realized, hey, I had it pretty good right then. I was happy and didn’t even know it. I have. I’m challenging myself to have those realizations more closely to the moments I’m living, rather than in retrospect. I’m doing it one small bit of awareness, one little shard of presence at a time. And it’s kind of working. I’m going to keep trying and see where it leads, with gratitude as my guiding force. Continue reading

Managing Expectations Down To Nothing

expectI didn’t even realize I’d done it until I looked around and saw that I had. I’m superstitious and fear disappointment just as much as the next person. I believe in Murphy’s Law, and that the universe is random and chaotic, and have a Midwesterner’s tendency to downplay good fortune. I do this to avoid inviting bad luck. I don’t count the eggs even after they hatch and have been sold at a profit. I try to be prepared for the worst, because doing so ensures a fairly well-prepared today. I have built a life on avoiding discomfort by attempting to maintain balance. I try to look out for myself and make healthy choices. The view I have of my life is a precious, hard-earned stability to be cherished. It wasn’t until very recently that I was forced to peer below the surface where I confronted a glaring truth: I had worked so hard to manage expectations for myself and my life, that I’m not striving for anything more than stability.  Continue reading

High Hopes In A Dark World

hopesThe power of a voice and the distance it can travel is astonishing. One simple post on social media can leave the world with numerous meanings. Just the other day, I posted a photo with the caption, “High Hopes in a Dark World”, and the feedback I received was very diverse. Most were wondering if something was wrong, or simply admired the creativity and perspective. Continue reading