Feeling like an Onlooker

Sometimes I feel like I’m looking upon my actions and not doing them. Recently, I’ve become stressed about my mothers money troubles and I’ve been trying to help her out as best I can. Coming from a single income household, I need to do my part now that I’m an adult. So, what’s holding me back from work? The mental exhaustion I think.

My father who is very much still present in our lives is an addict and it can be quite an emotionally abusive situation. I have always been the adult and it seems like I’m the only adult. I feel as if am looking upon myself from a third person view. Maybe it’s imposter syndrome, but I don’t feel like an adult and I don’t think I ever have. Yet, I am stringed into this and it is quite exhausting. That might be the root of it, I needed to grow up too fast to emotionally support others.

As I grow up, I’m starting to wonder if there is any point we figure out what’s going on. Do we ever fit the shoes we need to fill? I hope one day I can. With a PhD to focus on, the stress is definitely getting to me. But at the end of the day, we can only try our hardest and there is no obligation to be the adult for others. So, as part of this post I want to fill some typical journal prompts. These are mostly ones I’ve found are good for gratitude and self discovery. While life can be a struggle, we just need to remember we can get through this.

List three things you’re grateful for

  • My opportunities.
  • My loving pets.
  • All the leisure items I own.

What can you do to make your day better?

  • Write a blog post.
  • Play some video games.
  • Cuddle a doggo or cat.
  • Read a book.
  • Cook fried chicken.

What’s your focus for today?

Finishing my presentation and getting my dog to the vet.

How will you achieve the tasks you need to?

I will focus on myself with keeping important matters in mind. Although, if it becomes too stressful, I’ll take myself out of the situation as best I can.

I stole most of these from the app stoic, however; they help me gain a sense of direction which is great. Before I finish the post, here’s a quote to keep you thinking.

Thanks for reading!

diary · mental health · Opinion

Shifting Perspectives – Spirituality

Just a warning, this post talks about death a bit and I understand that it’s a difficult subject to think about.

I am a quite a skeptical person. I’ve always been like that, I just think scientifically. Yet, the more you delve into the science world, the lack of answers give rise to thoughts and questions. As I’ve grown, I think it’s worked in favour of helping me become more in touch with my spirituality. Although, I was raise catholic so that might’ve helped a bit too. Regardless, in this post I want to explore spirituality more and understand it, looking at alternatives to my unanswered questions.

What is there after death?

As a catholic, I’ve always believed in God and heaven, however I have been open to my own interpretation of this. Despite this, there’s still one thing that makes me panic at night because of fear and that is; what if it’s exactly like before I was born? in other words, nothing.

Scientifically, we can analyse the brain after death, measuring its patterns. However, that’s it. We can take accounts from what people have experienced before they’ve been resuscitated but again, that’s it.

Entering into the realm between science and pseudoscience, an interesting concept that has been proposed is quantum consciousness. It’s where the quantum mechanics (nature explained in terms of atoms) is used to explain consciousness. In terms of death, scientists are starting to look into whether this means consciousness is possible after death. Some scientists even think that when a person dies, quantum information can be released into the universe, perhaps indefinitely, like a soul. While it’s controversial to some, it’s great to see that science is becoming more in touch with ideas of spirituality to understand the world around them.

Science definitely doesn’t know the answer to a lot of questions and maybe that’s just it, we need to explore ideas that challenge traditional science.

How does the universe just start expanding?

The beginning of the universe started with a singular point of infinite mass and density, called a singularity. It’s kind of similar to what’s in the middle of black holes. At some point, 13.8 billion years ago, this singular point just started expanding outwards, in all directions. Naturally, questions arise from this theory. What caused this? Why was this singularity here in the first place? And if space time didn’t exist, how was there a singularity there?

Some interesting theories include the multi-verse theory, which involves bubble universes splitting and colliding. Another is the oscillating universe theory, in which a universe expands to the point where it reverses into itself and creates a new one. The issue with all these theories is that there’s no evidence, only hypothesising. So, at what point do we abandon our conventional understanding?

Society has often looked to religion and spirituality to understand the unknown. A physicists and atheist named Alan Lightman describes the idea of splitting the universe into the physical universe and the spiritual universe. Physical being what can be studied and understood; and being the experiences of the universe that aren’t subject to scientific analysis. So, maybe the answers to the greatest questions about the universe and life are in fact, spiritual.

There’s so much left unanswered out there and maybe that’s the points. It’s up to us and our own spirituality to discover this. If our soul does exist indefinitely, then maybe we have a greater role in the universe than anyone can imagine. At the end of the day, whatever our beliefs, it helps us answer the unknown and gives us mental stamina. I know that personally, discovering my own spirituality changed my outlook on life and presented hope where there never was any. So, what’s your perspective in life? What questions do you have that can only be answered by spirituality at this point and how does this effect you mentally? I’d love to hear your thoughts!

Thanks for reading!

diary · Inspiring People

Journal Writing Prompts

Journaling isn’t for everyone. It can be immensely beneficial for some and for others it may not be. For me I journal through my creativity. I create blog posts to express the emotions I keep hidden within, all while hoping I can bring advice or happiness to someone else’s day. However, writing down these emotions, whether happy or upsetting can help people understand themselves better. I also keep a physical journal, and while I don’t write in it everyday, it’s there when needed. Physical journaling helps us reflect, but it also give us something to do. Write absolutely anything. Talk crap about your favourite show or go into detail and examine every bit of its themes. You see those themes because it’s how your mind interprets it. It’s a creative outlet that allows you to explore your brain.

I wanted to share some prompts to help you journal and reflect on your emotions, as well as enable you to be grateful. Sometimes we don’t appreciate what we have.

  • How do you deal with change? Is it welcomed? Give an example.
  • What is a time in your life that you put your heart into something and no one appreciated it? How did it feel? And what were your next steps?
  • What little things bring you joy and make you calm?
  • What can you implement in your daily life to give yourself tiny bits of joy?
  • Everyone has a story. A moment in life that changed who they were, for better or for worse. What is that moment for you? And what did you learn from this?
  • Did you fulfil your previous goals in life? If not, are you okay with not achieving this goal? If yes, was that goal what you expected?
  • What show are you watching right now? What makes it appeal to you? Are there any characters you can resonate with?
  • Describe the book you’re reading. What characters can you resonate with? What themes are present?
  • What stands out to you when you take a walk on your normal route? Why?
  • If you find romance, how do you want your relationship to be? How can your partner show you respect?
  • What is your definition of a good friendship? How do you ensure you’re a good friend?
  • What’s a moment in your life that your pets have been there for you?
  • Love video games? List your favourite and the best character in them.
  • If you were to write a book or a screenplay, what would you want it to be about?

Some of these may leave you thinking ‘why would I want to write about that?’. Write about anything you want to. Journaling isn’t always supposed to be about your day. Google prompts or choose some of these, it allows you to reflect on life and also shows you where you were at a certain point in your life. I don’t know about you but I find it incredibly satisfying to look back and see who I was, as well as how far I’ve come.

Thank you all for reading! I hope you enjoyed this post.

diary · Inspiring People

Living in the Present

Living in the present opens you up to more positivity in your daily life. Often when bad old memories arise, it can bring anxiety and stress, and this goes for the future as well. At times when we think of our future we are afraid because we don’t know what awaits us, giving rise to stress.

Why Is It Important?

If your brain thinks about the past or future too often, it can allow negative or toxic thoughts to enter your headspace. If it continues it can become a state of mind. It will give rise to anxiety and it will reflect on your outlook on life.

Keeping your mind in the present allows you appreciate daily life more and brings about positivity. Of course, you can think where your future is heading, but don’t let the negative thoughts in. You don’t know what will happen and stressing over it won’t help.

How Do We Live In The Moment?

Find an activity that will allow you to take your mind back to the present. Walking with a friend often helps, or cooking with someone. Distract yourself, that’s the best way to appreciate what you currently have.

However if these thoughts are consistent and constantly causing stress and anxiety, by all means seek help to talk out the events bothering you. Talking things out definitely helps you to understand why the situation bothers you and let’s you move on.

Hope this post was thought provoking, thanks for reading! And please be safe in these strange times.

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diary · Inspiring People · Review

The Outer Worlds And Asexuality

Lately, I have noticed that representation of different cultures, orientations, etc have become more prominent in the media. In my opinion there is still much stereotyping going on, however; it’s good to see that wider representation is happening. This brings me to the topic of this post. Recently, I have been playing the video game, The Outer Worlds and I was taken aback by the asexual character that was presented. For those who don’t know, asexuality is an orientation in which an individual lacks sexual attraction to anyone. That’s the definition in its purest form and by no means excludes people who don’t have sexual attraction, yet still have romantic attraction or sleep with their partners. I have been asexual for as long as I can remember, all those natural instincts never clicked. The Outer Worlds portrayed my situation perfectly. First I want to explain a bit about what the game is about and then delve into the character which changed the game for me.

The Outer Worlds is a role playing game set in a colony in another star system. This colony is poorly run by a cooperation and you are tasked with saving the colony before its demise. Not only does this game have an asexual character, it also explores social hierarchy and the power of cooperations. The social commentary present in this game is incredibly in your face and it really allows you to reflect, drawing comparisons. In saying this, I shouldn’t have been surprised when I discovered the level of depth they gave Parvati (the asexual character). The writers never failed to show the anxiety that had arisen due to her sexuality.

During the game, Parvati meets someone she idolises and they start hitting it off. When I went to interact with her, I could feel her anxiety. She confided in me about how she has was never into ‘physical stuff’ and worried that her romantic interest wouldn’t accept her. And to personalise your gameplay and story even more, the writers added an option where you can admit that you weren’t into physical stuff either. Parvati looked completely surprised. For me, it captures the anxiety with meeting potential romantic partners and even the shock of finding someone like you to a tea. When you meet someone you like, anxiety takes hold, some might argue even more so if you’re asexual. Countless times I have worried, ‘what if they only want one thing?’ and it stop you from pursuing relationships. It’s also amazing that they didn’t make her an aromantic (someone who doesn’t experience romantic attraction) asexual. I’ve found when people find out someone is asexual there’s a lot of ‘so you don’t want to date anyone’, so it’s good to get a wide variety of asexual representation out there. Every asexual is different.

On quick side note, I also like how she wasn’t labelled as asexual within the game, which I know might sound a little strange. For me, it’s normal, it doesn’t need a label. Yes, a label can help us understand what we experiencing, though I’ve always let it create anxiety about how different I am. Labels help some and don’t help others, it’s a matter of preference.

Thanks for reading everyone! Let me know what you think about representation in the media today. Is it getting better? or is it full of stereotyping?

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A Letter To My Younger Self

Hey there,

Life is going to throw a lot of challenges.

Some of which, you would never even imagine.

There will be much heartache and pain.

However, you will get through every minute of it and be a better person at the end of it all.

Keep those who treat you right close and don’t let them go.

Let the ones who don’t leave your life and do so knowing that you tried your best.

You have great friends currently and know that whatever life throws at you they will be there.

I want you to remember to be there for them too, especially when life is tough; try.

It’s okay if you can’t as long as you give it your all.

And one last thing, don’t let people walk all over you.

You have a voice.

Make your feelings clear and don’t allow people’s comments to resurface.

Be strong and know you have a right to be treated with respect.

I am so proud of you and you’re doing your best to achieve your dreams.

Love from, your future self.

This post is a little different than usual, however; I think it’s a nice idea to write to your younger self. It was quite therapeutic telling her how far I have come and where I am at now.

Thanks for reading!

diary · Inspiring People

Creativity And Mental health

Life can be quite stressful at times, and often we bottle up our feelings. As we keep in our feelings more and more, it becomes even more unhealthy and can give rise to outbursts of emotion. A way to combat this is through having a creative outlet.

What is a Creative Outlet?

A creative outlet is basically something creative that you do to portray your emotions. It can range from drawing to writing a blog. It also doesn’t have to be singled down to one hobby. I personally enjoy writing stories, blogs and poetry, as well as digital art. It just has to be something that allows you to express yourself.

Why Is It Important?

Having a means to express your creativity is extremely beneficial for your mental health. It enables you to focus all your creativity and emotions on a specific task. The importance of aiming your emotions at one activity allows one to have an effective outlet, as opposed to keeping them in and doing nothing with them. If we don’t allow them to flow, our emotions tend to come out eventually in an unhealthy way. Drawing, writing or other hobbies allow us to reflect and explore the reasons we are feeling a certain way without discussing our issues with others. Opening up to friends isn’t a bad thing to do, however; sometimes we really need to listen to ourselves.

Taking the time to think and analyse your emotions allows one to understand themselves to a higher degree. It’s essential to reflect without the influence of others. Often we go to other people to understand our own emotions and give us advice. If we constantly let opinions and judgements bombard us, we start to lose sight of ourselves, therefore; it is up to us to obtain that understanding of our own emotions.

Creative Outlet Ideas

  • Journaling – this helps us think clearer, although it is quite hard to do because directly writing our emotions can be daunting.
  • Writing poetry or short stories – I see this as a way to mask ones emotions. Say you’re experiencing extreme heart ache because of a situation, you have the power to put creativity into that emotion and express it in fictional way. This is my personal preference over journaling.
  • Drawing – sometimes scribbling helps, sometimes delving deep into a picture does. As long as you get those emotions out.
  • Creating YouTube videos – some people like to use their experiences to create media. I haven’t personally done this, however it’s an outlet.
  • Making a game – games are just writing and drawing combined which seems amazing. Of course, there is coding and the hard computer aspects, none the less it is a great way to channel emotions and creativity.
  • Cooking or baking – make up your own recipes, decorate a cake, it helps to just do something fun and creative.

Thanks for reading everyone! I only this year learned how to channel my emotions into creativity and its working thus far.

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diary · Inspiring People

The Importance of Self-Care

Hi Everyone! In this post I am going to discuss self-care and why it’s a necessary for one’s mental well-being. At times when I have felt quite down and lacked confidence, I found that had to do a lot with the fact that I had stopped making time for myself.

What is Self-care?

Self-care is an activity that we do to take care of our mental or emotional state. It can range from partaking in your skin care routine to taking a long bath, or even playing video games. Basically something you do to make yourself feel better.

Why is it Necessary?

Often our day to day lives are filled with stress and anxiety because of work or other factors. Practising self-care helps to combat the toll that our daily lives takes on our mental health. Some benefits that self-care has shown, include; greater capacity to manage stress, increased resilience and reduced mental health problem symptoms.

As someone who was incredibly burnt out last year, I always delayed doing activities to take care of myself. I would often find myself saying, ‘I’ll do it when my semester is finished’. At the end of the day, I got even more burnt out and my performance dropped. Self-care should be implemented on a daily basis as we all need a break.

Some Self-Care Ideas:

  • Light some candles, even the smallest tasks can be therapeutic. Create a calm atmosphere to enjoy especially if the environment you live in is quite stressful.
  • Put a face mask on. I always joke that face masks wash away all my insecurities and they do in a therapeutic sense. If I feel like I am having a bad skin day, I put on a mask and my skin feels better.
  • Eat some chocolate. Don’t eat your feelings away, just indulge in some comfort food sometimes, its like a reward for your work.
  • Play some video games or read a book. I do this for escapism and well there’s nothing wrong with wanting to escape at times. Take yourself to another world and have an adventure.

There’s so much you can do to feel good and, more often than not, its the simple things that help the most. I challenge you all to try an implement some self care at least once a day. Just do something that genuinely feels good because it’s incredibly easy to absent mindedly watch television while scrolling on your phone.

Thanks for reading everyone!

diary · Inspiring People

Organising My Life

Hi everyone,

It’s 3am and I have realised I have been in rut for the past two weeks. All I do lately is play video games and I don’t think that’s healthy. Now at 3am, for some reason I have decided it would be the best time to organise everything so I can be as mentally prepared for productiveness tomorrow. So, how am I going to organise everything? How am I going to get into a productive mindset?

Writing Down A To Do List For Tomorrow

I created a bullet journal and it is being used very poorly at the moment. I am basically going to plan out all my tasks the day before and leave the bullet journal open in plain view so I do not ignore it. I find if things are directly in front of me I will just ignore them, therefore; it is going on my desk where I first sit in the morning.

Developing A Morning Routine

My morning routines are non-existent and I wake up at like 1pm these days, since I haven’t started uni again. So, my morning routine or should I say wake up routine is poor. Basically I am going to put the tasks I want to get out of the way in the morning such as, workouts and reading. From there I will march over to my desk and not play videogames.

‘How are you going to maintain this morning routine?’ I hear the voice inside my head asking me. Well, I tried downloading the app Fabulous but it wanted me to pay and I like motivational messages as much as the next person but I’m not paying $64 a year. I could use my bullet journal, though I need something to bombard me with notifications so I actually do my morning routine. After searching for that perfect app, I found ShineDay which is half in Chinese but it looks really cute and that’s what matters. One of the pre selected habits was ‘take an egg’ and I have no idea what that means but I love it. Eggs are now part of my morning routine.

I am not sure how effective habit tracking will be as I tend to give up on it. I am however, optimistic because the tasks I set don’t stray too far from activities I do during the day.

Timing My Tasks

Instead of writing what I need to do, I am going to spend say an hour on a certain task. That way I don’t feel like I am taking on too much work. I do have quite a lot of tasks I want to complete which makes me feel overwhelmed and then I just procrastinate. So, if you’re like me and easily procrastinate, I recommend doing this. After completing all my tasks, then allow yourself leisure time. The app I use to time my tasks is called Tree and it allows you to plant a virtual tree for every hour you focus, its great.

Thanks for reading everyone! I hope some of you can resonate with my experience of being in a rut. I personally find these methods work for me, hopefully they can work for you too!

diary · Inspiring People

4 Lessons Learned at University

University can be a fantastic experience that enables you to meet new friends, explore your character and open you up to a number of opportunities. However, University has downsides as well that you need to experience to allow yourself to grow an develop. Here is a list of the some of the lessons that I’ve learned throughout my years studying, I hope others can draw parallels with their own experiences.

Grades Aren’t Everything

Everyone gets a grade they aren’t satisfied with. An idea that took me a while to realise is that people tend to not fulfil their potential at times because it’s hard to manage study, a job, hobbies and mental health. It’s incredibly difficult to get your desired grades on top of all those responsibilities and obtaining less doesn’t make you a failure. You were able achieve your best at that moment in time, you still worked hard regardless and you should be proud of that.

Even if you fail, or barely pass there are always alternative paths to your career options. Sometimes you just need to take the longer path and that’s okay because if you really want to get somewhere you will.

There’s Opportunities Everywhere

One door closes and another will open. Sometimes you won’t get that internship and that’s okay because another opportunity will come along. It may take time but most of the time, something better will come along.

You’re Not Going to Automatically Find Your Calling

I went into University thinking I’m going to love my course and find my calling. That didn’t happen. The work load at University was intense and then I had practicals as well, I didn’t enjoy studying science (which I love). What really keeps you going though is the end goal. As long as you remember what made you choose that career path you will be motivated to keep going. Although in saying that, do work experience in your field and find out if its truely a career you think you’ll enjoy on a daily basis. Explore other options as well because you never know where you passions entirely lie.

Making Friends May Be Difficult

Sometimes you make a friend in a class, then you don’t see them for a month. University works in strange ways. One of the things I was really excited about before starting University was making really good friends. That didn’t happen until the middle of second year. I’m not saying that you won’t, but it may take time. Add people on facebook, make friends with your project group because you never know where it will lead.

Thanks for reading everyone! I hope these lessons can resonate with others, as well as help new University students.