Monday, February 2, 2015

forever 21/The Answer

 Shot on Sony NEX-5n

New Years in Melbourne

I have always been perplexed by the 'motivational phrases' that flood social media platforms during the new years period. In particular, the one that I see every year and am especially skeptical of is the line, "New year, new you". 
I know it's supposed to inspire people to start over and make positive changes in their lives, but it simply eludes me why these changes should only be made when we enter a new year. To me, every single day is an opportunity for a fresh start, and if you really are determined to make a difference, you could do so today, right now- not only when the clock strikes twelve on the first of January every year.
That's probably why I have never really made any New Years resolutions. Quite frankly, if I was really so driven to join a gym or be a nicer person, I would have done so yesterday, without the excuse of a "new year, new me". If I am so determined to increase my fitness levels or make the lives of the people around me easier, I would force myself to do it, no matter the stakes, no matter the time of year.

Last weekend I turned 21, which is supposedly a huge life milestone. These past few years, though, birthdays have just been another day for me, with the added excitement of fancy meals and presents. I can't really remember the last time I felt "older" or "more grown up" with the passing of my birthday. However, this year, I felt a twinge of the monumental importance of the fact that I have graduated, am even legal in the United States, and still have no idea where I'm going in life.

For almost every day for the past two years, I have been questioning myself over and over again what I really want to be doing. The Answer was always nagging at the back of my mind, but I would cloud it with hypothetical problems and endless what-ifs. Every now and then I would allow The Answer to resurface, and allow myself to dream of the possibility of chasing after it, before blanketing it again. 

It didn't take a New Years motivational quote to make me feel more adamant about listening to The Answer, but a birthday celebration. With no more excuses and a certain pressure to map out a path, I have been forcing myself to plan out and take certain small steps in acknowledging The Answer. More often than I care to admit, I still receive visits from my old friends Mr Doubt and Ms Cowardice, but I send them off as politely and as soon as possible, with secret hopes for them to never return. And then I continue taking my small steps.

But ultimately, what I'm trying to say is that you don't have to wait for a particular date or milestone to start changes that you want to make. Just because it's already February and no longer the New Year does not mean you can't make new 'goals'- you just can't really call them 'New Years' resolutions' anymore. (However, let's be real. Who even abides by their New Years' resolutions past the initial two months max.?) You simply have to want to start, then you can start. Today.

Unlike my previous miserable attempts at blogging in my middle to high school years, wherein this corner of the internet was assaulted by my lines upon lines of emotional angst, I have kept this blog relatively impersonal. I try to keep word posts minimal and allow my photos to reflect my thoughts, save for a few sporadic personal writings. I have withheld from sharing controversial opinions past my favourite items of clothing, or my favourite views whilst travelling, for the sole reason that I don't believe my opinion or the status of my emotional well-being is really warranted. There are plenty of outspoken people in this world who will share their beliefs and feelings, whether other people want to hear them or not, and cyberspace does not always need another opinion or whining teenager/adult to fuel forum fires. This [increasingly lengthy] post, however, I felt really belonged here, on this blog, where I have slaved away so many hours creating content for an unknown audience.

Anyway, now that I've finished putting myself out there, I'm retreating to the safety of my novels. Just remember: if you want to see a change, you just have to be willing to make an effort, and you can start any day.

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