I want to start by saying that I don’t know what I’m doing. I’m not a published author, I don’t have any college degrees, and I don’t like writing. I am a psychology major with no goals in mind, no direction, and no motivation. My enjoyment lies in living vicariously through my fantasy football team, listening to alternative masterminds of rap, hoping to become one someday, and being a complete ambivert. I’ve had more rough days as of late than I’ve had good ones, and I hope that dumping my thoughts from mind to board will create some sense of clarity.
I’m extremely grateful for the position that I have been placed in. I’m surrounded by people that appreciate me for all that I am, and all that I’m not. However, I’ve been surrounded by people that don’t. I believe that whether you’re a people person or not, the support you are aware of either makes or breaks you. Factually, I do have this support, whether it’s visible or not. But because it can be blind, I underestimate its existence. That’s when the thoughts of loneliness arrive. The belief that at the root of it all, no one cares.
I believe the nature of this stems from moments of my youth. I have had times when support wasn’t there and I could see it. My mother left our family when I was eleven. I do take a lot from my mother. I believe that her emotional intelligence rubbed off on me, to a healthy extent. My father, still in the picture, was raised in a traditional sense, and while he can sometimes show his personal side, raised me in a similar manner. Do I wish that I was raised in a more hybrid household? Yes. But I can’t change that. I’m in college now, and I’m on my own.
This “I wish that” or “what if” mentality has destroyed me, and still does. As an emerging adult, I have been faced with many experiences that I wish I could have changed. Today alone, I was pulled over by a police officer from my brother’s school, reminding me that I was driving in a restricted area. When reversing out, I hit the curb incredibly hard, popping out the bumper of my 2005 Altima. I felt like a criminal, and for the entire car ride back, I imagined how I would’ve felt if I simply dropped him off after legally parking. In the grand scheme of things, it probably doesn’t matter, but I’m so fixated on what could happen or would have happened, that everything happens all at once.
I bet every one of you reading this has had someone remind you that “there’s only so much time”. However, people usually use this phrase with a negative connotation. It’s used as a fear factor. “You only go through high school once.” “Your paper is due in two days.” “You’re going to laugh about this one day.” Only a few people that I know of have ignored this phrase.
I’m sure in at least one of your classes, your first day of school icebreaker was “if you could have dinner with anybody, dead or alive, who would it be?” If I could have dinner with someone that I’ve never met in person, it would be Alex from Headspace. That man has done so much for me and he doesn’t even know it. He’s one of the rare few aforementioned that combines the belief that time is both a finite resource and how it is best to conserve that resource by just living in the moment.
My favorite analogy of his is how anxiety can look like a game of whack-a-mole. Many of us, if not all of us, sporadically face problem after problem, day by day, and our one goal is to eliminate them as soon as they arise. As a man raised in a semi-traditional manner, I admit that I have fallen under this “efficiency trap,” the belief that there is a solution to every problem, and that every problem should be solved in a swift, timely fashion. With this thought, however, I am viewing time with a half-glass-empty perspective, feared by the concept that a similar problem will appear again, and appear soon. Therefore, according to Alex’s wise words, all I can really do is just welcome these thoughts, label them, and just carry on. Acceptance is a hard skill to teach yourself, because for many it embodies submission. However, you’re submitting yourself to fear if you let denial get the best of you.