Grow Through What You Go Through

  • As a little kid, I was always all about the next next next thing. Inevitably, I’d start the next thing and find myself discouraged and/or hating it just 5 minutes in.

Rinse, lather, repeat.

This has been the cycle of my life for 25 out of 26 years, mostly subconsciously. Whether it was elementary to junior high, junior to senior high, high school to college into career, I would always find myself super frustrated about my current situation while only looking ahead into the far future where this scenario would no longer have relevance.

It wasn’t until recently that I recognized it’s all up to me, my mindset & Irene to choose how I allow different circumstances to impact me. I realized that I needed to start living in the present instead of anticipating all of the possible outcomes the future may or may not actually even hold. I needed to avoid needless distractions and self deprecating behavior.

It honestly wasn’t until earlier this year that I started waking up and consciously shake off my autopilot (aka matrix vibes) to ponder the meaning of life and my greater purpose in this span. During this time, I became boldly aware that I had survived about a quarter of my life in anticipation of something… the perfect life to magically cascade down from the heavens? Hard work pays off, but get real. That is by no means whatsoever how it actually works, ever. In fact, we would all be better off setting realistic life expectations for the sake of resilience if nothing else because setting ourselves up for failure is beginning to get old. I am realizing that in many ways, my tendency to procrastinate has always been a lot like my subconscious approach to life… I’ll live it for real later.

*Yawns. Already living the life she once dreamt of in oblivion.* Newsflash, you can’t get these times back.

The off and on trend I notice in myself boils down to some weird and unattainable standard I hold myself to. Anytime I try and fit in downtime, I somehow convince myself that I must have lost ALL of my ambition because I took ONE night off from working late or doing *fancy* stuff. REAL SLACKER, ASHLEY! Why don’t you go do something? And so on…

The thing is though, I do actually do things. So why do I do this to myself when adulting is already taxing enough? Rest is the new hustle, my friends. Inner peace is where it’s at.

I relate to people the most when I try to remember that we’re all just doing our best at this whole life thing. I also try and remind myself of how much time I spend being hard on myself when all I really need is a quick moment of mindfulness and affirmation to disrupt the downward spiral from consuming me again, because it’s truly a slippery slope.

Sometimes I wonder if everyone is just as high-functioning and suicidal as I am. I’m not sure knowing the answer to that would make me feel better or worse.

What a time to be alive, am I right?

The world is an interesting place and it makes me feel a million types of ways the more I try and comprehend it. There’s such an unfortunate amount of hate in this world cemented into the veins of those who sit on far opposite ends of the spectrum (any spectrum). It’s like trying to look directly at the sun to try to see the sun itself. Basically impossible, but achievable enough in theory that we genuinely try. You could easily go blind and/or burn your eyes out trying.

In the end, this type of thinking ends up being my Achilles heel. I enjoy diving deep into thought to understand things that most people tend overlook, but I’m realizing that sometimes I need to overlook some of these things (particularly these bullshit things) otherwise that bullshit will ultimately weigh me down beyond what it’s worth; leading me to plummet again. Up until that moment, I’ve pushed myself so hard it’s almost worth it. Double-edged sword? In a way.

Navigating this lava tag/life spin-off without getting burned has been harder than I anticipated. And it makes time pass very quickly. In somewhat of a sad sort of way. Hello aging.

I’m still learning what is and isn’t lava, but even when I lose sight of the bigger picture, I know that returning to the mantra of taking each moment one step at a time will carry me long enough to see forward when I’m not sure of what is “supposed to be” ahead.

Ashley OchiaghaComment