published originally on the NU Chronicle
As I set my alarm for Monday morning late on a Sunday night, I decided on 8AM, before remembering, oh wait, tomorrow is Monday! No makeup, which means I get to sleep an extra fifteen minutes. I won’t look as good, but haha, whatever.
On Monday morning, I woke up and looked at my face. It really didn’t look that bad at all; I only started to feel the familiar discomfort and inadequacy as I walked past people on my way to class who looked much more put together and awake than I, with my under-eye bags (they’re designer), oily skin, and adolescent complexion. Continue reading
I’m trying to commit to this in college, and it’s going pretty well so far.
It’s not a complete solution to my insecurity, but hey, it’s a start.
2) Eating by yourself.
Lots of people do it; at the dining halls here, loners eat in front of a TV together. Everyone’s on their phone (this bothers me), and I try to force myself to just sit and eat my food.
There’s no shame in eating alone. Not everyone has the time to wait for a friend…some of us are in hurries to get to class; we just need something in our stomachs. Continue reading
There’s this post on tumblr:
I don’t want to be creepy, but I don’t want to be empty either.
It sort of just makes me think how we let social norms dictate our actions and how it ruins our lives because we DON’T do things because we don’t want to seem creepy or weird, and we don’t take risks or leaps of faith and we always think about what could have been, not what was. There’s always a lingering question: what if, what if, what if?
I’m tired of what ifs.
If I keep living my life scared of what people might potentially think of me, it’s going to consume me. I will look back at these years and hate myself, and I will be left wondering, what if?
And I feel like lots of people share this sentiment. I can’t be the ONLY person out here that gets fed up with hesitation and mixed signals, right?
– Queen of Second Thoughts
Have courage, like this ledge cat.
People are effing courageous; are you aware?
I mean everyone.
New teachers could be new to a school or new to teaching, or both. They can slip up a few times the first semester and have only their mentor to aid them. They can walk into a cafeteria and feel some sort of discomfort, but they have to suppress it, because they’re an adult, and walking through a sea of high schoolers, they are already supposed to have their life figured out and gotten over adolescent insecurities.
Except these sort of insecurities don’t magically disappear the day we graduate school.
Props to new teachers, because their lives are currently harder than a new student’s. They are not only alone and unfamiliar in a new setting, but they also govern the lives of dozens of little individuals.
So, props to new teachers.
Hats off to people who face social pressure about what they do or who they are. Props to those who ignore it all, take all of the taunts with a grain of salt, and keep on the path that they are taking. To those that go above and beyond and proudly display their passion or speak freely about it, I salute you. Thank you for not hiding something that is central to your identity, and thank you for letting the ignorant haters ignorantly hate.
To people who feel the seconds ticking down or the window of opportunity slowly closing, congrats on making big moves or taking leaps of faith. Because we all know the despair of regret, of not having said something before it is too late, of having to hold something in and suffer inside.
So, in the off-chance that your big move works out precisely how you want it to work out, embrace that feeling of relief, of finally crossing something off of the list of things that you have been wanting to do for a long time.
The people who put themselves on the line and abandon their insecurities will be the ones moving forward through life, whereas the ones who sit rigid on the sidelines and wait for action to happen to them will remain static.
In our society, insecurity and dissatisfaction with our own body comes from the media, along with which comes the overwhelming emphasis on physical attraction as the driving criteria of self-worth. Now, I’ve written about this before. But as you will have read and noticed by the theme of this blog, I am daily having new revelations about my approach to different societal ideals, and in the past few days I’ve come to a stronger conclusion:
I am proud of myself for being relatively satisfied with my body; although it is not picture perfect, I’ve got no regrets or worries about what I look like, because I have no control over a great portion of my appearance.
Appreciation for your body comes from (in my opinion) two approaches, both of which must be utilized to cover all bases. This isn’t a flowery lie; this is merely the humble truth.
First, you have to prove to yourself that the concept of fat is not only arbitrary, but also completely inappropriate in the context of today’s society. It does not and should not exist; it is entirely illusory.
Once you realize this and understand that there is something called a ‘personality’ that truly makes you who you are, you can go about improving yourself with a healthy mindset. Of course, all of this talk of self-acceptance certainly does not preclude the idea of progress; it only alters the reasoning behind the desire to change.
The concept of fat is currently placed in control by your peers, not yourself. No matter what your appearance, there will always be people that you will encounter that will expression their dissatisfaction with your outer appearance.
There will certainly also be representatives of the other side, namely, your friends and family. These social revolutionaries in your own world will say words; these words will be an attempt to convince you that you are fine the way that you are. But this doesn’t matter.
If you don’t truly believe inside what they say to you, the words won’t make a difference; they will go in one ear and out the other. Realizing that random bozos will always find something wrong with your appearance eliminates the arbitrary nature of body image.
In this new mindset, the concept of beautiful does not exist, because diversity is good. There’s no secret formula with variables for hair color, weight, height or ethnicity, because everyone is attracted both romantically and platonically to all sorts of people.
The idea of self-worth is placed primarily on physical appearance. Now, I’ve written about this; my post essentially can be summed up by explaining that personality and attractiveness do not always go together. Since first impressions are visual, we should take the time to appropriately dig deeper into a person, breaking through their materialist outer shell into the soft membrane that is their personality. Do this before you form a premature conclusion about someone else.
See, in today’s world, mainly immature people place such a strong emphasis on looks. The tragedy of this obsession comes in decades, when the fleeting nature of looks is uncovered, and you are lying naked on the ground with only your personality to cover your arse. As Lana del Rey asks, “Will you still love me when I’m no longer young and beautiful?”
My mind always comes back to the example of the tragic fire; a true friend or lover will still love you after a major fire singes half of your face off. The struggle between prioritizing looks over personality is demonstrated primarily in the adolescents and young adults of today’s world.
When all is said and done, change and progress are still important, but only when approached with the correct motivation. This reasoning would lie in the desire to better oneself for oneself, not someone else or to fit in with society.
Sometimes, it is nearly impossible to accept yourself as you are, or even to agree with what others tell you. When push comes to shove, the most logical and acceptable option would be to simply change yourself for the better.
Your approach to body image should rest on a strong foundation of disbelief in the concept of fat as something that can be universally and concretely determined; everyone’s opinion is entirely arbitrary, and whose opinion really matters is your own.
Self-acceptance and the general rejection of physical attraction as the only factor that makes you worthy of friendship and love is the first step in the self-love process.
This twisted tango with body image is merely a phase; in the end, the people who accept you for who you are and who you want to be are the ones that actually mattered. Once you have accepted yourself, you are free to go about changing yourself.
We are all on this road, but some of us are just facing the wrong direction.
In 50 years, the world will be in chaos.
The nuclear taboo will have be broken, and nuclear weapons will have destroyed the planet. We will finally have suffered the consequences of not taking nuclear threats seriously.
Countries will acquire bio weapons and wreak chemical terror on others. And if scientists are incompetent enough to not know how to create chemical weapons, cyber terrorists will hack our databases and intentionally start conflicts that escalate.
We’re going to run out of space as the population of the world outpaces the space available. It won’t be immediate, but we won’t think anything of it until disaster strikes and the damage is irreversible. By that time, we’ll have stripped all of the green off of the land, and the planet will be a mix of blue and brown. But the blue will be more abundant than the brown; our resource consumption and our CO2 emissions will finally catch up to us, and the resulting climate change will not directly cause extinction, but will cause a rise in sea levels, exacerbating the issue of overpopulation.
We’re going to run out of effective antibiotics, and all of the bacteria will become resistant, eventually allowing a deadly, widespread disease outbreak.
And the polar bears? They’re gonna die. So are all of the tigers and elephants that we’ve been poaching for generations, and overall biodiversity will plummet, and the zoos will be empty soon enough.
Not as though people will want to go to the zoo though. The skies will turn more and more gray and the gas mask industry will prosper, but the overall quality of life will go down. Air pollution won’t kill us all, but we won’t be happy. We won’t have a blue sky to gaze at, and we’ll see fewer stars to wish upon.
Technology? Well, we’re going to develop so many new types of technologies in the coming years that will eventually take over the role of humans. Vending machines replace vendors, and factories and mass production replace handmade goods. While this may be good when you initially think about it, what happens to all of those jobs? My thought is that eventually every role today that requires a person will eventually be replaced by a robot, and that the only new job will be as mechanics and engineers, to fix the robots when they fail, and to create new robots that will fix broken robots.
Increased communication through technology will cause an inability to speak to others in person without feeling extremely awkward, and eventually people will never leave their houses. I mean, why would they need to? You can shop online now. Food delivery is such a commonality, and windows and natural light is overrated anyways.
Computers will be cheaper. People will be less inclined to get out of their chairs and go outside to exercise.
The media will continue to infect our minds with arbitrary and flawed perceptions of beauty. We as a society will become more insecure, prone to suicidal thoughts and self-harm.
In 50 years, we won’t know what an apple is. Everything that we eat will come in the form of a vitamin or supplement and everything will be mass-produced and modified by science because our crops are struggling so badly. The quality of meat will decrease, animal abuse will skyrocket, and even the most exclusive and high-class restaurants will serve subpar food.
The people will revert to savagery. We won’t have anything else to do.
And all of those dreams you’ve had as a kid? They won’t exist anymore.
President? The government will revert to anarchy because they won’t be able to solve problems well enough, and the people will mutiny and overthrow the bureaucracy.
Astronaut? Well, space tourism will be such a plausible concept in the next few years that if you’ve got the money and time, you can fly to Mars or a nearby comet for fun. While the role of astronauts won’t become obsolete, the wonder and mystery and prestige that you initially thought to be associated with being an astronaut will cease to exist; you’ll just be one of those people.
And if none of these manages to throw our planet drastically off of its balance, we’ll probably face extinction from threat from a large asteroid slamming into Earth.
*Note: this is a creative writing prompt; I don’t necessarily agree with everything said above.