The Defense Mechanism of Being “Okay.”

I have written so many things about life encouragement. Sometimes pouring hope into my words is the only thing that convinces me to go on, like they have a magical pull that will keep my spirit up. However, on most days it is just about being okay- going through boring routines- not being sad nor happy, just a blank slate.

It is the human way of staying sane.

We are mostly driven by the power of our emotions. These are fueled by our energies, and being just “okay,” is the act of our body to defend itself. It keeps it surviving, recognizing that this stagnant stage is for renewing energy.

It is though, a different story when you become so steady that all your emotions- including rage- are pent up inside you. This paves way for overwhelming reactions that are not good for you and the people around you. Acknowledging that these emotions are part of you makes it easier for you to gain control over how to express them, but sometimes, like I have said, not saying anything is also just enough.

People have the misconception that being “okay” is a bad thing, like it is you settling for less and not having the drive to yearn more in life when actually being “okay” is the way to contention- and what is life if not the search for what will make one content?

Being just “okay” means that you are in touch with reality and have acceptance of how your life flows, but it should not mean that “okay” is enough.

I know I got you confused there. Let me explain more.

“Okay” should only be a stage of reflection. It should not be permanent.

Our feelings, and life in general is not a one way line- it is a cycle. In a cycle, when one gets stuck in one stage, it becomes meaningless and unable to move forward.

Being just “okay” is the breaks in between the ups and downs, allowing you to transition into them. Humans will be unfulfilled without the purpose of seeking for something, and in that our emotions should be exercised in all ways. We need to feel pain in order to feel happy. We need to feel angry in order to feel peace. We need all the contrasts and we need “okay” to go between them.

So if you are just “okay” right now, take your time, but remember- there will always be something after, and if that exhausts you, you can always take a break and just be “Okay.”

It is Not A Cinderella Story: The Reality of Poverty

The pandemic has taken over the world and made it halt- but it cannot stop the graduation season. Countless of stories of success flood your social media timelines, mostly of people who have made it despite of setbacks. How the world loves to romanticize sufferings- the inspiring drama makes us teary eyed and hopeful. We uplift the people who we think have made it in their harsh lives, and it is in our human nature to sympathize.

Poverty should not be romanticized.

Rags to riches is one of the most popular storylines because it shows that if they can, why can’t you? We worship these even though we are well aware of the facts that only one in a million make it while the rest of us scrap by. We fail to realize that we shouldn’t be inspired by such because opportunities and wealth are equally distributed in an ideal society. We are so accepting of this broken system that we applaud those who reach the finish line, without even thinking about why their roads are bumpier than ours.

We talk about a child who climbs mountains just to get to school. We talk about girls who fight back for their educational rights. We talk about kids who are forced to endure hunger while in class. We talk about them like they are normal, but the real question is why is this all even happening in the first place?

For every one person who gets their Cinderella story, thousands in the world suffer. It is never about the effort you put in, but it is more about how their levels are only on 10 while yours is 100. No matter how hard they try, they will always just reach a 10 while you look down on them from your 20th and mock them because the climb has already taken a toll on them.

Perhaps on the evolution of human beings, we have been conditioned to accept hierarchy like it is part of us. We forget that we are the ones who created it in the first place, these invisible lines that make visible impact in our lives. The more we are advanced, the more our gaps widen. It is no wonder that those who find their eyes open to the many imperfections of the society are still trying to make their voices heard, because the truth is, we have not resolved anything fully. We are still bound by prejudices. We are still in this pyramid and the bigger it gets, the more the foundation widens- the rich get richer while the poor get poorer.

The true way to success is not through hardwork- it is through the right opportunity.

That’s the only answer.

A man can plow his land and it still would not grow him crops simply because he has a bad land. Why doesn’t he change the land then? Well, he simply can’t because he is on an island. He can perhaps grow other things, but would it be the same as a man who has rich soil on good land? It would never be. Should he be just satisfied with what he is given then?

We try to justify it with contentment. It is true that happiness only comes when you decide it for yourself, and you can only be satisfied when you are contented. Again, we are so accepting of how broken our society is that hope is the thing that keeps us in check.

The greatest lesson to all this is that we should realize how much privilege plays. You may think that you are just doing average, or even barely making it, but only when you see the real face of poverty in the eyes of those who are on the streets, hungry and lost, will you find yourself accepting of how the right chances got you to be lucky. We should always remember kindness and be the opportunity that someone needs to make a change in their lives, then perhaps in that we can all change the world.

Life Thoughts

I have come to a realization that you can only know the real world once you have seen it through the eyes of those who suffered most. To what degree, though, one might say, because there is no way we can judge the suffering of each one and justify it as greater than the others. Some see it in wars, some in poverty, some in silence battles that hide behind masks of glittering images. Pain, in every way it is, is still pain. In this common ground you will find how the human heart relates with each other, because there is no greater comfort than knowing you are not alone.

To see it, one must take the journey of looking back to memories they have longed buried and relive the experience. Be in that feeling again; the hurt, the pain, the hopelessness, and remember how it made you to be who you are now. Remember that you have this, and other people go through the other things that can account for it. You have scars on your heart, others have it on their minds. You might have a fresh wound now, others might have already had it for years and yet the pain haunts them like a lost limb.

When one understands, then it becomes clear what the answer is- kindness. Kindness is so rarely pure, and bless those who have them so genuinely. Often it is developed from regrets, from guilt, from making amends. Are we to judge then if it is still considered as good? Kindness is a good virtue- but I say no. Kindness, no matter its form, will always be kindness.

Let kindness grow from your own pain, then perhaps, this world would get the change it needs. However, it is mostly wishful thinking for we know that with free will comes cruelty and injustice. Then I must revise; let kindness grow from your own pain, then perhaps, one’s life would get the change it needs- your own, or another’s, and then maybe both.

There is no greater thing than growing kindness and letting it bloom. // hrh

Humanity For The Rest of 2020

Halfway through 2020 and we have gone (and still going through) with the following:

  • Wild Fire in Australia; destroyed the ecosystem
  • Tensed War in the Middle East; Iran vs USA after an Iranian General was killed in Iraq
  • Coronavirus spread from Wuhan, China
  • Brexit- United Kingdom withdraws from the European Union
  • Locusts destroyed crops in Africa
  • Looting and Rioting in the USA against Racism

This is, of course, not to include the issues that we have long faced and have now intensified:

  • Unemployment rate rises as economies strain from impact of the virus
  • Healthcare systems collapse
  • Poverty is on high toll
  • Education systems transition from physical to online learning strain on 3rd world countries

We all had our hopes for 2020. According to Numerology, 2020 calls for positive outlook in preparation for the changes that will occur. The consequences gets worst as you go down the social ladder, as money has played the part of being the cushion of power versus impending doom. Several (if not unlimited) options are for the rich- the poor only think of surviving, while the middle class remains the backbone of the economy.

Six months in and there is no saying that it will get better soon, in fact, the future is set to bring more challenges that will yank humanity out of the normal routine we are used to. Expect more eruptions to come that will shake us to our core, but it will also come to stop. The timeline is unknown, but I have finally foreseen a positive possibility. When this comes, we have to seize it and learn our lessons from the events that crushed us.

It is the time for us to destroy the social triangle and make it a circle instead. We need to pay kindness forward to survive the rest to come. It must start with us; You, the ordinary man, in order to break this cycle. The rich may hold sway in this world, but we hold the real power. We are the laborers, the minds, the ideas, the actions. We are the ones who can make an impact and start the positive effect. I cannot say that we can cleanse the world of our prejudices; this is something that we should continue fighting for throughout the generations  as it is honed into our characters and we cannot just expect that tomorrow will be perfect. But at least- at least we have stood up against it and create the chain of action that will put an end to it in the future. If you have privileges, whether it be by money, race, or identity- this is the call for you to know your role.

In your own way, make the change. Ask for the change. Be the change.

This Is Why You Should Hold On

This is why you should hold on.

You don’t have to get out of the dark. You have let it consume you, but sometimes.. sometimes we need to be in shadows. I just need you to light a little flame there, like the dark night with a lone star- lonely, oh so lonely, but hopeful. I want you to hope.

You don’t have to forget all the pain. You don’t have to forgive. But don’t ever remain hurt just to blame yourself. I just need you to accept the pain and embrace it- for scars are beautiful. I want you to fight.

You don’t have to pretend. You are not okay, and that’s fine. You don’t have to put on a mask, you don’t have to force yourself to feel something, or to be someone. I just need you to be you, no matter how everybody else sees you. I want you to help yourself.

You don’t have to move forward right now. This journey isn’t easy, and if you are stuck in this road, it’s okay. I just need you to never let go, no matter how much you want to give up. I want you to try.

This is why you should hold on.

And the fact that you are still holding on,

just shows that you are strong.

This is for you, who’s thinking of giving up today. // hrh

Photo: Basketball Diaries

It Is Not You I Miss

It is not you I miss, but the gap you left me with makes me think of it. I know I am long over you, as I am writing this I can’t even remember your face anymore. It’s funny how the small things that used to mean so much to me no longer matter. Like the sound of your voice; I remember how I would feel at peace just by hearing you during our late night talks.
 
The feeling of being alone is what haunts me. I miss having someone to call mine, I miss the feeling of being in love. And yes, even though I have been broken many times I still hope that someday, I will come across someone who will finally be the one who’s just right.
 
It is not you I miss, but being together completed me. It is not that it defines me, but I know for a fact that love is what makes us whole. The sense of belonging to someone makes one realize that the world is even more beautiful when you have someone you can share it with.
 
It is not you I miss, but love.
 
I’ve forgotten you; it’s been a while and I no longer love you. I have learned to be with myself and I don’t really mind it even if I would end up alone forever. I have hope, though. My heart hopes for another story, maybe another heartbreak; another chance to believe in love again.
 
It is not you I miss, and I think I’ll never do anymore.
 
— It is not you I miss;
I miss the someone I will love next.
 
// hrh
photo: A Walk to Remember

Come What May

You came to me with a strange look on your face while we sat down to look at the sky again. I knew by then you already have a question on your head. I waited, listening to the wind whispering to the leaves. Minutes passed by and silence swept over us.

Finally, you spoke and said, “Why?”

I waited for more, but apparently that was all you said. I thought about it, and came up with this:

“Why? I do not know. Some things happen, some don’t. No one knows. But that’s what keeps living; we live to know the things we probably won’t even know.”

You smiled at me, and took a deep breath. And just because of that, I understood- I understood how it felt to live.

 

// hrh

The Art of Lucid Dreaming

Every night, as my body falls asleep, my soul is awake, aware that it is in a dream. I usually see events unfold from a first person point of view with limited physical control, with my mind following the dream as it is to see if it has a message for me. I let the dream take over, and only interfere with it on times when I feel like I might be stuck in it or if it turns into a nightmare.

Facts say that we humans always dream, but most of us forget about it when we wake up. Ever since I was a kid, I would always have a recollection of what I have dreamed about the night before as I wake up every day. Sometimes I would get a whole episode, sometimes just fragments, although I cannot seem to remember everything. I have ignored this, thinking it was normal, and never questioned why my dreams seem to be real.

I don’t recall when I first heard about lucid dreaming, it’s just that I was amazed that there was a term for it and that it was rare. I researched about it over the years to fully understand it, there was even a time I tried to interpret almost every dream I would have. It made me more anxious and tired, as I would be stressing about what signs in my dream would mean and if it was bound to happen in my already challenging life. I learned that some people would even see themselves sleeping, and I was totally freaked when that first happened to me. I try not to do it again in fear of not being able to go back to my own body, I think that’s why most of my dreams are first person view. I don’t think I can even imagine what my reflection looks like in a dream, a defensive tactic I have developed to avoid seeing myself from another perspective.

The best dreams are the ones that seem so out of the world but yet feel so real. I have flown once, and I remember how vivid it was; how ecstatic the feeling of flying was like the superheroes I watch on TV. I remember waking up to aching legs, because in my dream the pressure of flying was made from one’s legs. I do not know how to swim in real life, but I had some dreams where I would be able to breathe underwater. I was living my fantasies while I slept.

However, as my eyes close and darkness captures me, it can also follow me into the other worlds I see. I have had encounters in which I had to force my physical body awake by thinking about which body parts I can easily move first, like my toes or fingers. I have tried to avoid these by not watching horror films before sleeping, as I tend to relive nightmares.

Perhaps lucid dreaming is my way of searching for the void I feel whenever I am awake, but the truth is sometimes I also yearn for a dreamless sleep where I can fully rest.  I don’t think I remember a time where I just.. slept.

 

 

Ready, Get Set, GOAL!

We all know a certain philosophy- but not all of us live by it. We come across inspiring words and stories almost daily, thanks to the powers of social media. The world today seems to increase its pace, and the question is, where are you now?

· Think

Many of our life decisions are based on a pulse feeling, so it’s a good practice to think about what you really want. This also allows you to know yourself better, and in knowing yourself better you learn how to prioritize and organize.

· Believe

You are the only one who can set the limits. Be confident, the world is out there for you to conquer. It may be a tough battle, and not all of us get the luck. However, don’t stop yourself from aiming to be better than always. A little growth over time goes a long way.

· Act

Your dreams will stay as dreams unless you take a step to reach them. Be patient in working for them, for nothing happens overnight. Remember that you can build your life the way you want it to, so you better do the best.

Time flies fast as you grow old, and in some moments you come to a point where you start to rethink your life over. Usually, this leads you to the road of regrets, frustrations, and hesitations- making you feel like you haven’t done enough- so it’s now time to get up on the other side of the bed and live the life.

 

photo: Oscar Söderlund: https://unsplash.com/@messisorder