Rambles, rants and raves

A lot of opinions spilling out of my brain


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Angry TigerI feel like this. The reason for that is multi-faceted and not very hard to explain. But I won’t explain it because I was once told you should never write when you are consumed with emotion – or you should never write anything that may be seen by others when you are consumed with emotions. The best time to write is when your mind is so quiet that you can hear everything you have ever felt and dreamed of and everything you will feel and dream of. You want your mind to be a blank slate rather than a twisted web where you can’t find beginnings or ends.

I often find it harder to write when I am calm. I like to write when an idea sweeps me up in it like a gigantic wave and I have to swim to keep afloat. But maybe that’s why so many things lie unfinished in my desk drawers or in forgotten folders on my laptop. Once the wave of excitement is gone I’m too scared, too judgemental of my own writing to carry on.

That’s the thing with emotions, it is very easy to get swept up in the moment – that’s no bad thing of course, but it does not bode well for when those emotions pass and you are left with the consequences of following your emotions and thinking of little else. I don’t mean in gestures of love, or crazy moments of adventure or of finally taking that step to do something you’ve always wanted to do. Songs, films and novels are created based on those emotional triggers and catching the magic in them.

But there are times when it is best to think, take a step back and breathe. Soak it in and embrace it without having to significantly alter your life or risk altering it in a negative way.

We are not robots obviously and our emotions help make us the people that we are but it’s also worth embracing the calm – the ‘nothing’ – between those moments of euphoria or sadness or anger. It is, after all, where we live most of our lives; not in the extreme but the in-between. I think we would do well to embrace that and enjoy it too. We may become happier, more balanced and better people. Not everything has to be life and death. Joy, or satisfaction, can come from the medium too.

 


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Dreams? Not for everyone apparently

I have been all over the shop this past week or so and although my blog seems to have naturally changed to a weekly update thing I am so tired of essay writing (already!) and am feeling tired but with a still buzzing brain and as a I wait for the boy to get onto skype I felt it was a perfect opportunity to blog.

I am in my final year at university this year, I graduate in July which is only four months away. As a result, I do what every average person would and start thinking about my dreams. After all, it is the reason I’m at university in the first place to be able to achieve my dreams and all those wonderfully impossible ambitions I have! I don’t want the deep despairing hole of student debt trying to engulf me for no good reason. But I digress.

I was talking to a friend today and during the conversation I happened to ask one of my favourite questions ever to ask a human to him, I feel it says a lot about a person. I asked him what his dream was. Not his dream that would please others or get him away from his problems but a dream or an ambition he’s always wanted to achieve. Just because he wants to. He shocked me slightly, as it does every time I get this answer, that he didn’t really have a dream or an ambition. Happiness is enough. Which is all well and good but I’m confused. (I wrote about something along those lines here https://browneyesandgreenbees.wordpress.com/2011/12/03/happiness/ way back when last year).

His dream is to be happy yet he’s currently miserable, feeling low and a little sorry for himself. In my opinion, as nice and lovely as it is to have a dream of being happy it’s not realistic. It’s like aiming to drop a dress size but not telling yourself you’re going to get there through healthy eating and exercise. If your dream is to be happy (which is obviously everyone’s dream – no one aims to be depressed) then you have to have aims of how you’ll achieve that. Humans like to be complex creatures as such having such a basic dream or ambition as being happy means that you’ll never actually achieve it. Funny how the world works, huh?

Not having a dream is fine. Stating your dream is to be happy is like saying well I hope I’m still breathing so that I can have dinner. Duh. Everyone wants to be happy. Those that don’t want to be happy usually wish they could want such a thing. A dream does not mean a state of being, because it’s just illogical to mean such a thing. A dream or an ambition is fundamentally the steps to getting you to ‘happy’ or at least meaning that on the way to achieving those dreams you find ‘happy’.

Banksy

Also, you can’t technically dream to be happy. Even if you have everything in the world. A secure family, health, money, time and whatever else people fantasise as the ideal; there will be times when you’re not happy. That’s just human nature. To be consistently happy, I mean not a single day with even a second less than pure elation would drive you crazy. And it’s just not humanely possible, unless you’re a toy or a cartoon and you’re smile is drawn on. I am a naturally happy person, it is my fall back emotion and yet even I allow myself to feel anger, sadness, disappointment and hope. That’s what life’s about. Not being happy all the time, learning and evolving and reaching happy again, it’s about exploration not numbing yourself to certain emotions because they are seen as ‘negative’.

I have countless dreams but never have I felt the need to announce that I dream to be happy. Firstly because I am lucky enough to feel happy most of the time and secondly because that is just a general consensus. I do not like assumptions but just like I assume that if you’re reading this you’re breathing (and have access to the internet) so I assume that you want to be happy.

You can’t dream an assumption. You can’t dream for something that is obvious for every person on this planet (and there are a lot of people). It’s like every person in a beauty pageant asking for world peace. It’s a given. And although I believe everything should be stated at least once, I do feel it’s a little silly to say you dream to be happy.

Maybe I’m being overly ambitious and judgemental but I stand by what I say. I think it’s more logical to state that you don’t yet have a dream; or that you’re still figuring  it out; or that you don’t need one because you’ve got all you want and you couldn’t ask for more. That, to me, makes a lot more sense.


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Anger: a multifaceted emotion

How I feel when I'm angry...although I don't look quite as amazing.

There is a fine balance when you enter into the realm of angry feeling. I know many see it as a bad emotion, one that should be repressed and I agree, to a point. However, it is healthy to allow yourself to feel anger every once in a while, like everything else you shouldn’t let that be the only thing you feel but anger is good I think. It’s a multifaceted emotion, like a lot of things, it’s stereotype isn’t necessary the die hard truth.

Getting angry almost shows you care enough about something to get mad over it. I know that’s a dangerous statement to make, I have sometimes felt such anger that when I do finally calm down, I realise it was unnecessary to fall to such extremes. But I can get angry, not mad rage angry but frustrated angry, when having a discussion with someone and I feel passionately that they’re wrong and they feel the same towards my views. It doesn’t mean I want to break their neck or punch them in the face. That sort of anger is more frustration at not being able to make someone see my point, or not being able to explain myself properly to understand why I think the way I do (even if they then choose to prove I’m an idiot).

There’s the sort of anger that you can’t control, which makes you shake and want to break things. This sort of anger is obviously, at least for me, far more damaging. Especially if it gets the better of you, and as soon as those little angry nerves disappear, you end up feeling like an idiot and regretting whatever you said or broke or whatever. Still, I think it’s good to let ourselves get into extreme emotions; I think it stops us from becoming robots to be honest. It shows we’re still capable of extreme emotions (as long as we don’t let them get the better of us).

Anger is a multifaceted emotion and although considered a negative, it helps reignite our passion, it refuels our ambition and it’s an important emotion in helping us realise our mistakes and our desires.

So when you feel yourself getting angry, don’t suppress it straight away. Embrace it, take deep breaths and enjoy it. Your allowed to get angry, just as you’re allowed to be sad, excited, hyperactive or annoyed. Don’t let it consume you and with time you’ll realise you’ll be able to handle the emotion quite well. And soon enough you won’t get angry as easily because it’s no longer taboo, it’s just a normal emotion like boredom, glee and scared.


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Happiness

It’s strange but I’ve only recently realised that many forget to be happy or at least they forget to find out if they are happy. People get caught up in the mundane of their lives, or on the amount of things that have to do or the dreams they want to achieve that they forget to be happy. They may be happy, they just don’t realise it so does that even qualify as happiness?

Happiness is different for everyone, where rainstorms practically make me jump around in glee (which I have been known to do on occasion), I know they terrify some. It’s all perspective and obviously some people are happy with not realising they are happy. Some don’t need the confirmation to be happy, they just assume they are. It’s not exactly how I’d define happy but so each to their own.

A lot of people are never asked questions like “Are you happy?” “How do you feel about it all?” “How are you?” from people that genuinely mean it and actually want to hear your answer because they care, not for the gossip or as a conversation filler. Even those that love you and care for you sometime forget to ask. I think I know why. Apart from the fact that people are busy with their own lives, I think it’s because happiness as become an assumption.

People, and this is from society’s expectations of us, are assumed to be happy; people assume that happiness is other people’s default state. Even though they know, from their own personal experience that it probably isn’t theirs. Although they probably don’t know that. They probably don’t know that because they just assume they are happy too; people are too scared to evaluate themselves and see if they are really happy. People are curious about others and everything around them, but to self reflect and ask themselves, what is in my opinion a fundamental question, is shoved to one side and ignored.

It’s important to take a step back and breathe. Otherwise before you know it, you’re not okay. You’re unhappy, you’re frustrated and you’re annoyed. These emotions may be because of whatever is happening in your life at the time when you come to the awful realisation that you’re not happy. But you’d probably be slightly better equipped to handle those negative emotions if you’d asked yourself if you’re happy long before then.

Happiness is not an assumption; happiness is not something we should be complacent about. Happiness is one of the most important things in the world, it’s what helps make life that little brighter. You may surprise yourself when you ask yourself if you’re happy. You may stop and see and you may realise that you are happier than you realised.

I think the majority of people would agree that happiness is important to a healthy mentality. Isn’t that what everyone is striving for? Happiness? Isn’t that what companies are selling us when they advertise the newest gadget, car or perfume? Happiness? So why do we forget to actually ask ourselves such a simple question? Does the potential of a no scare people too much?

You deserve to be happy. You deserve to acknowledge your happiness and not just assume that you are. If you are happy, then great; you’ll find yourself feeling happier at realising your happy. If you’re not happy then you can start working towards being happier. But I should also point out that it’s okay not to be happy. It’s alright to be sad and to not be okay. Human beings are complex creatures and we need that too. For me though happiness is crucial to living and not just surviving.

Happiness is not an assumption.