Monday, October 27, 2014

Inspiration Monday: When you don't know what to do

Life often presents us with a platter full of options when you least expect it. If you're lucky, you're given something that you are 100% sure about, something that is your absolute dream. So naturally, there's no need to ponder and make a pros and cons list because you already know what your choice will be. The majority of the time, though, life doesn't work that way. We are given options that have both pros and cons and we ultimately have to make a decision, hoping we make the right one. I feel that during your early post-grad years, this is something that happens quite often. They also tend to be scary decisions. Decisions that can affect which direction your life takes off in, decisions that will determine your future. You can either end up extremely satisfied with your decision or completely miserable (and sometimes somewhere in between the two). So what do you do when it's your turn to decide?

If you're anything like me, you'll pretty much ask each of your friends for their opinion/advice. You'll even ask your parents. You'll go around asking just about everyone, because the more insight, the better, right? Maybe. When it comes down to it, you're the only one who can make this decision. You are the only one who truly knows what's best for you. You can ask for all the advice in the world, but chances are deep down, you already know what you're leaning towards. Sometimes it's exactly what people are telling you you should do. Sometimes it's what people are telling you NOT to do. Or in my case, it's somewhere in between. I think one of the reasons we like to ask for advice is so we can hear someone else validate your decision. Sure, there are times when you genuinely don't know what to do so you appreciate an outsider's point of view. Most of the time, though, you already know what you want to do.

But wait. You may know deep down what you want, but on the surface you're freaking out. You don't want to make the wrong decision. For whatever reason, something is stopping you from going in one direction as opposed to the other. That's when the confusing and frustrating part kicks in. Your future is staring you right in the face. Right now my future is staring me right in the face and growling. I'll admit, I'm a little bit terrified.

This time period in life is notorious for making big-time decisions, paving your life path, figuring yourself out, finding out who you truly are, etc. So, naturally, we feel super pressured! We want to make sure we get everything right. We want to succeed. We want to be happy. If only it was easier said than done.

So when you don't know what to do, when you don't know which direction to take, which decision to make, which option on the platter of life to take—don't freak out. Life is all about making mistakes and learning from them. Maybe you'll end up making the wrong decision, but it's a decision you made, no one else. Do you know how lucky you are to even get to do that? Life will inevitably hand you a truck load of decisions and you will have to make some tough ones. Some you'll get right, some you won't. But that's what it's all about. Learning as you go. Figuring out who you are. What you want. And you know what else? You're 100% allowed to change your mind as many times as you want. There is no right or wrong answer here. It's your life and ultimately it's up to you what you do with it.

Sunday, October 26, 2014

The Ultimate Netflix Halloween Guide!

Can you tell I love Halloween, yet? If you're anything like me you love the Halloween movie marathons going on right now and are eagerly preparing your costume (or anxiously scrambling to figure out what you're going to dress up as). You may find yourself opening up Netflix, in the mood to find that perfect movie to get you in the wonderful Halloween spirit, but instead you spend hours searching and searching yet finding nothing (because that's the glory of Netflix, after all). So, to make things a little bit easier for you during this awesome holiday, I've come up with a list of not just movies you can watch on Netflix, but also t.v. show episodes and documentaries! I call it...

By now you've probably realized that Netflix doesn't always have the best movie selection, so picking out a decent scary movie to watch is borderline impossible. I looked through the majority of their selection and these movies were the ones I deemed worthy enough to watch (or at least try, ha).

The Blair Witch Project
The Human Centipede
Insidious 2
Paranormal Activity 4
The Possession 
The Haunting in Connecticut 2

(Not Scary)
Scary Movie 2
The Nightmare Before Christmas
Fun Size
The Addams Family
The Craft

Buffy the Vampire Slayer
Of course, this show is full of demons, vampires, evil stuff, etc. so really any episode you watch can be deemed "Halloween-worthy" but these two episodes in particular are set during Halloween so you get the whole costumes, trick or treaters and haunted houses package!

S2E6 - Halloween
S4E6 - Fear Itself
(There's a third Halloween episode in Season 6, but I wasn't the biggest fan so I didn't include it on this list) 

Another show that is definitely "Halloween-worthy" with plenty of episodes that showcase urban legends and ghost tales, there are a few that stand out in my mind, especially if you've never seen this show before. These are some of the episodes you can enjoy watching even if you're not familiar with the show's plot but still want to watch something to get you in the Halloween spirit!

S1E5 - Bloody Mary
S1E10 - Asylum
S3E13 - Ghostfacers
S4E7 - It’s the Great Pumpkin, Sam Winchester
S7E14 - Plucky Pennywhistle's Magical Menagerie

That 70s Show
Obviously, this show won't get you scared (unless laughing scares you?) but their Halloween episodes are definitely worth watching during this time of the year. 

S2E5 - Halloween
S3E4 - Too Old to Trick or Treat, Too Young to Die

Who else remembers this from when they were a kid?! I used to love reading Goosebumps (even though some of the books, especially the pick your own adventure ones, were super super creepy for me). I just recently found out that there was an actual Goosebumps show (always thought it was just movies) and it's all on Netflix! So of course, you can go through the whole show or find the episodes that are based on your favorite Goosebumps book. For me, however, this one particular episode will always stand out for me and remind me of Halloween-time. 

S5 E1&E2 - The Haunted Mask

Maybe you're not in the mood to watch any more scary movies, but you still want to watch something to get in the spooky spirit. Or maybe you're one of those people who prefers the real thing as opposed dot the fake? Netflix has plenty of documentaries and yes, even ones that can get you in the Halloween mood. 

Never Sleep Again: The Elm Street Legacy
This documentary is super long (about 4 hours...) but if you're a fan of the Nightmare on Elm Street franchise, I absolutely recommend you watch this. It goes through each movie with commentary from directors, actors, etc. You'll get behind the scenes look at how the movies were made and also how fans reacted, plus so much more.

The Real Story: Amityville Horror
If you've ever seen any of the Amityville movies, then you probably know they were (loosely) based on real events. This documentary takes you through the actual events.

The American Scream
A fairly recent documentary that follows three families as they prepare their annual haunted houses. If you ever wanted to get a behind the scenes look on those haunted house attractions people love flocking to this time of year, then this is the documentary for you.

Nightmares in Red, White and Blue
I haven't seen this one yet, but I can tell you I am SUPER excited to! This documentary takes you through the evolution of the American horror film. It combines history + scary movies, two of my favorite things, so of course I'm going to love it. So if you're also into any of that or think you might find this interesting, add it to your list ;)

Wednesday, October 22, 2014

On making mistakes (constantly)

Lately I've found myself moving backwards. This is kind of how my life has always been. I make a mistake or I learn something (the hard way) but because of it I vow to make some sort of change, whether it's in my way of thinking or just life in general. I do this repeatedly. I always think that this is it, this is the last time, I will not repeat the same mistake. But you know what? 90% of the time I end up right where I started. For every step forward, I take two steps back. Or maybe it's really for every two steps forward, I take one step back? I rather think of it that way, because I know along the way of my many, many mistakes, I'm still learning, progressing and generally trying to make myself a better person.
This past month or so, the whole "unemployed & desperately looking for my dream job" thing has taken a toll on me. I'd be lying if I said I wasn't struggling. Having a job, even if it was just a "nanny" job, kept my life in perspective and kept me more or less sane. I had a responsibility, one that I took very, very seriously, and somehow that also kept my head on my shoulders. I don't think I really realized the full extent of that until it was gone. I found myself kind of back to where I was immediately post-graduation, during one of the more difficult periods of my life, and although I do feel I have changed tremendously and matured, I had the sense that I had taken a giant leap backwards in life.
That's when I started repeating past mistakes. When I started to find myself on the edge of a cliff and extremely scared of what would happen if I let myself fall off. I want to have control of my life, I want to follow my dreams and pursue my passions, but fear has gotten in the way so many times. I felt that because I didn't have my "shit together" so to speak, I was a failure. Thus, it's okay for a failure to repeat past mistakes and pretend as if she's never learned her lesson, the hard way, multiple times.

The mistakes I made? I'm not going to go into detail about them. Those who are close to me probably already know and they know that it's been a struggle for me for awhile. Maybe if they've also paid close attention to my life, they are mistakes I make when things are rough. I like to share my personal life on here because I hope that I'm able to connect with other people and reach out to those who are struggling as well. While I would love to pour my heart out about all of this, there's only so much I can say, and even saying all of this is very personal to me. But there is a point in this story. A big one.
It's okay to make mistakes. It's okay to keep making the same mistakes. It's okay to feel awful about it and it's even okay to not really care. You may have friends or family who will try to talk sense into you or you may even find yourself trying to talk sense into you, only to head back down that nasty road once again. Whether it's mistakes you're making with your relationships, with your family, with your friends, with your health, with your personal life, etc., it won't matter what other people say or do to try and make you change until you finally realize that you need to change.
One classic example I can think of that perfectly exemplifies this situation is when you have a friend who keeps making the same mistakes in his/her love life, no matter how many times you tell them to stop. I have had a couple friends who kept making the same mistakes, or more so hung on to the same mistake, for a very long time. You can give people all the advice in the world, but they won't change until they themselves realize everything. They'll probably even come to this realization more than once and just when you think "FINALLY!" they are back at it again. Don't give up on them, though. Don't give up on yourself. You keep making that same mistake? Someday you finally won't.
It's different for everyone, but we all have that "aha" moment or that real reason for wanting to make a change, but when you do that's freakin' awesome. You have reached your tipping point. You'll finally realize: it's time to change. It's time to stop repeating those mistakes.

I reached my tipping point recently. I don't know what makes this time different than any of the others (although I'm kind of starting to get a sense of it), all I know is I want to put an end to these mistakes that leave me feeling so crappy. We all make mistakes, all kinds of mistakes. Sometimes we make certain mistakes more than once. Sometimes we learn from them, sometimes we don't. What's important is that you realize you can change. It may take a lot of guts and a lot of courage and strength on your part, but it's possible, I promise.
Next time you find yourself making a mistake (even if it's something silly like making a typo on an important email) don't beat yourself up about it. It's okay to feel bad and it's okay to kind of freak out, but at most give it a day. Then after that period of "mourning", get back on your feet and try again.

Friday, October 17, 2014

Some scary movies to get your spook on

There's two weeks left until Halloween and you know what that means... scary movies galore!!! This is one of my favorite times of the year because there are so many great scary movie marathons on t.v.   I'm quite the movie buff, especially when it comes to horror movies, so I've pretty much seen them all. I wanted to compile a "short" list of some of my favorite movies to watch during the Halloween season. I broke them down into categories and also put (KF) next to the movies I consider kid friendly. Each is linked to their IMDB profile so you can read a brief summary of the movie and check out the ratings it got. Enjoy!

To get you in the Halloween Spirit
These movies either have a halloween theme going on throughout the movie or are the typical movies you find on t.v. during this time so they're sure to get you nostalgic!

Halloween (original)
Casper (KF)
E.T. (KF)

The Classics
Ahh, classic scary movies. It's hard to beat some of these. There are plenty of "classic" horror movies out there, but these are a good selection! I included remakes of some of the originals because in my opinion they are more entertaining to watch.

The Shining
The Hills Have Eyes (the remake)

Recent Scary Movies Worth Watching
These may not be considered "classics" just yet but I definitely feel some will make the list some day. A lot of scary movies that come out lately are pretty lame, but these recent ones are worth your time if you haven't seen them yet!

The Haunting in Connecticut (1 or 2)
Carrie (remake)

“Campy”/Ridiculous Movies
Who doesn't love a good campy scary movie? Some of these are almost so bad they make you want to laugh. But jokes aside, these movies have their moments! 

Any of the Scream movies
Any of the Paranormal Activity movies

Halloween mixed with Christmas
For some reason there are movies out there that actually manage to mix the wonderful Christmas spirit with the creepy Halloween spirit. I guess it's the best of both worlds!

Gremlins (KF)

Feel free to share your favorite scary movies or the Halloween movies you have a tradition of watching every October!

Wednesday, October 15, 2014

Abuse comes in all forms

What nudged me to finally write a post about this was the recent news about Kesha suing her producer for sexual assault and battery. The thing is, she wasn't just sexually abused. For over a decade, Kesha claims she was sexually, physically, verbally and emotionally abused by her producer. Unfortunately, you can't sue someone for being verbally or emotionally abusive, but that doesn't mean it doesn't damage a person any less (sometimes, it's even more damaging). I was enraged when I read commentary from people over this latest "celebrity scandal." Some claimed she must be a weak person to have put up with all of that for so many years or accused her of lying because it's taken her this long to come forward. WHY is there always victim shaming? People always find some excuse to blame the victim. This happens more often in situations in which mental and emotional abuse take place. Victims are deemed "weak" and at fault for their own situation.

You would be surprised just how often mental and emotional abuse happens. It's not something you can see and it's not something that victims are likely to talk about. Many victims can even be in denial that such abuse is happening to them and make excuses, often blaming themselves. I really believe this is the hardest kind of abuse to walk away from. Often times in relationships in which this type of abuse is occurring, the victim is being gaslighted. If you haven't heard the term "gaslighting" before here is a brief definition: gaslighting is a form of mental abuse in which someone uses manipulative tactics to create doubt in the minds of others. [For more information on gaslighting, check out this informative article from the National Domestic Violence Hotline.] Gaslighting is used to make the victim feel vulnerable, powerless and even stupid to think that anything wrong is happening. So when someone is being mentally abused, they may be in complete denial about it because they truly don't see what is happening to them. Some people may think "well then that's their own fault for not realizing it" but when mind games take place like this, especially with someone who you love, it's very easy to fall victim to the trap.

One of the reasons I wanted to write a post about this subject is because lately there's so much on the news and media about sexual assault and rape, etc. We don't see as much being mentioned about the other types of abuse. Maybe that's why society doesn't always recognize it as being as harmful as sexual abuse. Obviously, every situation is different and no one can fathom the extent of the damage that occurs for a person that undergoes any type of abuse, but we need to start recognizing that abuse doesn't just take place in the physical form.

The most terrifying part of all this is that it can be happening right under your nose and you don't even realize. I recently discovered that a close friend of mine had been suffering from mental and emotional abuse in a past relationship and I never even knew about it because they chose not to talk about it. For the majority of the relationship, this person was more or less in denial of the abuse they were facing, which is one of the reasons I never found out. Also, if you think this can happen to just women, you are horribly mistaken. I know of a very real and horrible situation that occurred to a male in a relationship who suffered from gaslighting for years. It can happen to anyone.

Sometimes people who do the abusing aren't even aware of it themselves and aren't necessarily trying to hurt the other person, but that doesn't make it any better. Any form of abuse in any type of relationship is harmful for the victim and can cause extensive emotional damage. So what can you do about it? Well for starters, talk to your friends. I'm not saying be nosey about their relationships, but if you ever notice that something is wrong or even just have a weird feeling, talk to them. There's lots of people out there who like to keep private about their personal relationships or aren't necessarily an open book, so just by simply asking "how are you and so so doing?" you can give them an opportunity to open up. And what if you're the one who's in an abusive relationship or you're not even sure if you may be? Talk to someone! Don't ever stay in something that is making you unhappy. Don't make excuses for the other person. I know I did this myself countless times and it only got worse. More often than not, people don't change.

Another thing you can do is be understanding of the victim. It takes a lot of guts and courage to walk away from these types of situations and not everyone is capable of doing so. It may be frustrating to deal with, but don't be so quick to walk away from a friend who needs your help, even if they aren't asking for it.

Please keep in mind that just because there aren't any bruises or "proof" to show for, it doesn't make it any less real. Abuse can come in any form. 

Friday, October 10, 2014

Songs I'm Loving Lately #4: Moody & Mellow

"Thinking Out Loud"
Ed Sheeran

Okay, so I'm usually a sucker for any Ed Sheeran song. He reminds me of a mix of John Mayer and Michael Buble. I stumbled upon this song because I saw gifs of the video and just HAD to watch it. The dance is beautiful and the cinematography of the video is awesome. Of course, the song is cute and lovely as well.

"White Collar Whiskey"
Emily Wolfe

I heard this song on The Vampire Diaries and was hooked. Say whatever you want about the show, but they have some pretty awesome music! Emily Wolfe has a little bit of Norah Jones going on, but more rocky-less blues. 

"Sea Green, See Blue"

Another mellow song by a female singer-songwriter. I guess I'm just feeling that type of music now that the weather's getting cooler!

Gabrielle Aplin

Another song I discovered thanks to TVD! Full of love and angst and all that good stuff.

"Be Alright"
Lucy Rose

Okay, I may have a TVD addiction but whatever it's my total guilty pleasure. If you're a fan of this show then you'll know this is the song that was playing during THE most heartbreaking scene EVER.  

"All Through The Night"
Sleeping At Last

This is a cover song of the original version and much more mellow (and of course, sad).

Check out the first three installments of "Songs I'm Loving Lately"

Thursday, October 9, 2014

How To: Get Yourself Out of a Slump

Since I've recently found myself in one of these very nasty "slumps" as I like to call them, I've had to become extra proactive in my attempt to basically slap myself back to reality. These are a few of the things that I did to get myself out of that slump (and am still continuing to do because it also helps you avoid getting back into that slump!) Hopefully some of these tips and tricks will help you, too!

photo credit: ~Liliana via photopin cc

1. Clean & Organize. This may be the last thing you want to do (believe me, I know) but most of the time it’s the very first thing you need to do in order to get out of that nasty rut you’re in. Cleaning your room/house and organizing things helps not only declutter the space you’re in, but also your head. Creating a clean and essentially “new” environment for yourself to be in is one of the first step’s in feeling better.
2. Read. Get out of your head for awhile. Reading a good book helps me escape my own world and enter the world the author has created. I love getting myself lost in a good book. I love it even more when I finish reading a book and it stays with me, leaves me pondering. A good book can be life changing. It can change your perspective. It can spark new ideas. A good book can make the impossible possible. 
3. Talk. Even if it means talking to yourself (if that feels weird, just write it out). Sometimes talking about what’s worrying you or what the problem is really does help, even in the slightest bit. Not having those thoughts rattling around in your brain can really be a huge weight off your shoulders. 
4. Do something silly. Okay you may think this is completely ridiculous, but seriously, do it! Belt out your favorite song (it can be a Taylor Swift song, it’s okay, I won’t tell) or do a little dance that you would never in your life do in public. I guarantee you will smile. If only because you feel like a total fool. But that’s okay. A smile goes a very long way. (Pro tip: If you’re out in public and can’t necessarily do “something silly” just imagine yourself doing the most ridiculous thing possible. I used to imagine myself dancing like a lunatic when I was on the bus and I’d catch myself smiling. It works!)
5. Make a to-do list. It can be the most mundane tasks. List anything you want. Make them simple things. Stuff you can easily do. Just being able to cross things off your to-do list will make you feel better and more proactive. It’s a step in the right direction.
6. Binge-watch a show on Netflix. Okay, this is a no-brainer. It may not be the most ideal thing to do if you’ve already been lounging around in your bed for days. But sometimes we do need those moments of just doing absolutely nothing but mindless television watching. It’s a great way to distract yourself, if that’s what you truly need right now. Just don’t let yourself become so involved in that Netflix marathon that you become a lazy bum and you’re back to square one.
7. Create an inspiration board. This is good because it not only requires you to search for inspirational quotes and pictures online (I recommend Pinterest, of course) but it also means you have to get crafty and put those hands to good use. If you have a printer you can print out the pictures/quotes/etc and then all you need are scissors, glue and paper (or a poster board!) Don’t have a printer? Perfect excuse to get out of the house. Staples has a printing center and it’s fairly cheap. Or you can use your local library. Once you have your inspiration board all set, put it up somewhere you’ll see it every single day.
8. Set weekly goals. Sometimes when we find ourselves in these so called “slumps” it’s a little difficult to set long term goals. They seem so impossible and far off. That’s why you need to start small. Give yourself weekly goals that you know you can really accomplish. It not only gives you something to do, but it gives you something to look forward to. It also puts you back in control of your own life. (Pro tip: don’t feel bad when you don’t accomplish these goals. They’re not meant to set you back further or make you feel worse about yourself. Just keep trying.)
9. Try something new. This can be pretty much related to anything. Are you into cooking? Try a new recipe. Are you a fitness junkie? Try a new form of exercise. Do you like gardening? Plant something new. Is there a hobby you've always wanted to get into but never have before? DO IT!!! I recently signed myself up for guitar lessons (pro tip: put the credit card far away from your computer after you've had a few beers) and at first I was all mopey about it (long story, but mostly because I was feeling lazy and in that nasty slump) but I went through with it anyway and it rocked! I may just be the new Taylor Swift. Watch out world. What I'm trying to get at, however, is that trying something new can sometimes give you back that spark or interest in life that is so often missing when you find yourself in a slump, so it's definitely worth a try.
10. Volunteer. This can go hand in hand with the "try something new" method, but volunteering not only gives you something to do but you'll also be helping someone/something for the greater good and that is sure to boost your spirits. There are so many options for volunteering. You can sign up for something that requires time commitment so you also have something to keep looking forward to (I recommend Girls on the Run!) You can sign up for somewhere where you set your own schedule for when you come in if you have a busy schedule (example: many animal shelters let you pick the days and times you come in to help out). You can even volunteer for just one day, just to test the waters. I can honestly say that anytime I have volunteered, whether it was for Girls on the Run (best. experience. ever!) or for a hospital gift shop, I have gotten something good out of it.

What's your favorite thing to do when you're in a slump?
What has worked for you in the past? What hasn't?

Wednesday, October 8, 2014

True Life: I'm 23 years old and already crippled by debt.

Of course this post is coming to you from someone who is currently unemployed and has all the time in the world to rage about this issue that is affecting who knows how many students across the country right now. But the issue isn't just about unemployment. It's the fact that I can't seem to do anything that twenty-something's should be doing. I can't move out of my parent's home and start being independent. I can't move to another city because of this. I can't experience the new-ness that comes with being on your own, whether it's close to home or somewhere new. I can't even travel because I don't want to spend a single penny on something that so many have the privilege to do but take for granted all the time. I haven't taken a vacation of my own, ever. I have considered traveling or visiting friends in other states or countries for months now, but I haven't been able to because I don't want to wipe out my very small savings account and max out the credit cards I have already had to open even though I swore I would never succumb to that.

I'm only 23 years old, at the "prime" of my life as many people seem to say, and there are so many things I want to be able to do, I SHOULD be able to do, but can't do because I am already crippled by the debt that student loans has brought me. I am crippled by the very society that raised me to believe a college education would get you everything your parent's didn't have but always wanted for you, only to be facing some very serious issues that years ago twenty-somethings did not have to worry about for years to come (if ever).

Is it my fault? Should I have chosen a different major? Should I have pursued a different career path? Something I didn't love but was more practicable? Something that would have made me the big bucks? Should I have put more effort in school? Should I have worked a job while attending school full time (with crazy hours) just so I would have something to show for when I finally graduated? Should I have taken on tons of internships? Is a college education even enough anymore? No, it kind of isn't.

I'm finding that I can't even get a job that doesn't require a college degree (but that many places now deem a "requirement" as if filing paperwork and taking phone calls requires four years of upper education...) I can't get those simple entry-level jobs, even if they don't require experience, because there are other people out there who do have experience who are applying for the same jobs and willing to take those jobs at entry-level salaries (which even then are very underpaid) because they have no other option. The job market is literally hell right now and I feel like I'm standing in the middle of a battlefield with no weapon, just a sweet smile and apparently a pitiful resume.

Everyone I talk to about this has a story to tell. They're either in the same boat or a very similar situation. You know what's the scariest part about all of this? What is our generation going to do when it comes time for us to start buying our own homes? Will we even be able to? At what age are you expected to finish paying off your loans? Is the interest going to eat you alive? 

I'm really not trying to be a debbie downer and I certainly know there are worse problems/issues out there. But the fact is, this is an issue that is VERY real and that MANY people face and many more will continue to face. Nothing is changing. To be honest, I don't even know where we would begin to make changes that can help. Sure, maybe student loan forgiveness is one step in the right direction. But is that really even a feasible option? What will even fix this deplorable job market? It's been this way for a long time and now us post-grads are paying for it (literally and figuratively). 

Who knows what the future holds. If I can give anyone going through similar struggles right now some advice, it'd be this:

Hang in there. You're not alone. Become an active citizen and fight for your rights. Go out and vote. Educate yourself on what you can do. Don't give up hope. Make a plan. Make a list. Don't worry. Or just try not to worry as much. We may have been utterly screwed by past decisions but the future is in our hands and we (hopefully) have the power to change it.

Monday, October 6, 2014

Inspiration Monday: Keep on keepin' on

I woke up this morning (okay, more like afternoon because I stayed up all night catching up on the Vampire Diaries...perks of unemployment?) and for a SPLIT second I pitied myself. Then, I snapped the f* out of it and told myself I had plenty of things to do and to get to it. Just because I don't have a "job" doesn't mean I'm rendered useless and incapable of actually being productive today. It's so easy to find yourself void of motivation during times like these, but I can't stress enough how important it is for you (and your sanity) to keep yourself going. Keep believing, keep hoping, just keep doing something. Don't let yourself fall trap to the blues and negativity. Yes, it is extremely difficult under certain circumstances and it gets harder as time goes on and all seems to be a lost cause, but no matter—keep on keepin' on.

Before I start doing any of the millions of things on my to-do list today, I scrolled through my Pinterest inspiration board (comes in handy quite a lot) and I wanted to share some of my favorites with you, in hopes that it inspires you as well.

Friday, October 3, 2014

Pursuing my dream job

Many of you bloggers may be familiar with the "Blogtober" challenge with the goal of blogging every day in October. At first I thought I'd give it a go, but honestly I've been the laziest bum ever these past couple of days. I've let sucky times get the best of me and resorted to laying in bed sleeping and/or Netflixing (can that become a word?) all day (and night...) I haven't been very productive. Being jobless sucks. You'd think having all this free time would mean I FINALLY catch up on all these projects I've started and such, but my motivation is seriously lacking. I actually had to slap myself in the face today to snap out of this mopey mess I've become. I absolutely dread getting sucked back into that hole of post-grad misery I faced about a year ago, so I am absolutely not going to let myself get to that point. I have been applying to jobs, but jobs that actually interest me/are relevant to what I want to be doing with my life are lacking, so who knows where the road may take me...

Anyway, I'm getting off topic. The point is, I was scrolling through my blog newsfeed and I noticed that today's Blogtober challenge is to write about your dream job, which is funny because that's exactly what I've been thinking about for awhile now. I know I always say I don't know what I want to be doing with my life or what direction I want to go in, but deep down I actually do know what my dream job is. I know exactly what I want to do. The problem is that I'm too scared to pursue it. I'm too scared to lack financial security. I'm too scared of failing at something that actually means the world to me. I'm too scared to actually get started and pursue that dream job.

The funny thing is I've known what my "dream job" is since I was a kid. I just never really acknowledged it until recent years. It's not an easy job and it's not something that many people are successful at. It's a job that if I do pursue, I want to be the very best at, and it scares me to think that I won't be. How will I ever know if I don't try, though?

Okay, ready? My dream job is... to be an author. Surprise, surprise. A blogger whose dream job is to be an author (absolutely no shock factor there, sorry for the suspense). The thing is, it's not something I really tell people. Or at least haven't gotten to telling people until very recently. I feel that especially in today's world, it's not really a viable career option—to be an "author". I don't want to be just a "writer", I want to actually be an author—someone who writes books and books that people actually enjoy. I'm always so critical of books that get turned into movies, but you know what? That would rock my world. If that ever happened I think it would possibly be the high point of my life. This isn't really something I've told to anyone, and here I am putting it on my blog for the whole entire world to read. I guess in a way it's like giving myself a kick in the butt. Now that I've told all of you, I actually have to follow through with it.

And that's exactly what I plan to do. I am jobless right now. So even though I will be applying for jobs, I'm going to take the free time I have now to not only work on this blog that I have come to love so much, but also finally get started on all that book business. I have tried before, but it was a pretty weak attempt. I know that even if I do get a job, I will continue to pursue my "dream job" so to speak. I guess that would mean I have two jobs. Writing may be a hobby of mine right now, but if I were able to actually make a career out of it... well that would be a huge thing to cross off my bucket list (I think meeting Leonardo DiCaprio would be number one on that list, no shame).

We all have dream jobs. We all have ambitions and goals that we'd like to some day reach, but sometimes fear gets in the way. Sometimes life gets in the way. Don't let it! Don't let anything stop you from pursuing your dream job. It's never too late. Seriously. Life is too short to just live day to day life. Even if your dream job is way off the charts and literally impossible to pursue, make a list of other things you want to accomplish. Things you know that you absolutely can accomplish if you just set your mind to it. A bucket list, basically. Make one today if you don't already have one. Check on it regularly. Pursue that list.

And as my favorite actor playing my favorite character from my favorite movie says...