Tuesday, November 19, 2013

HEAD VS. HEART

It's a battle as old as time, the one between head and heart, primarily as it concerns romantic relationships. Luckily for me, I settled that particular battle a long time ago. When it comes to matters of romance neither organs have a say. I decide on using what really matters - a calculator and a checkbook.

Ha. Just kidding guys. I wish I had the wiring to be a gold-digger. Life would be void of love but filled with things! Oh, the glorious things!

Where the real fight between head and heart happens for me is in the tricky realm of future aspirations. Simply put, what is it that I want to do with my life? What will be my verb? "Hi, I'm Audrey and I'm a _______________." You know when you're young and what you believe you have the capacity for is limitless? "I want to be a ballerina! I want to be a zookeeper!

I've noticed that the older I've gotten, the more I've limited myself. And that's not just me. It's a lot of us and we all do it with the reasoning of being realistic. Our heads love to steer us towards realistic goals luring us with the idea that they're safer, better. All of my decisions made under that reasoning leave me feeling half-fulfilled.

I've always wanted to write. If you were to ask 9-year-old Audrey what she wanted to be, after yelling "a Spice girl," she'd say "I want to write!" And between then and now there were a few deviations: a fashion designer, an interior designer, a psychologist, a social worker, until I finally settled on journalist.

I chose journalism as my "verb" because I figured it was the most realistic application of what I really wanted to do - write. And I loved it. I still love it. But the fact remains that my head warped what I really wanted to do into something else for the sake of safety (which is kind of funny because journalism has been called a dying profession, so there goes my safe job).

Our hearts are risky little devils. They yell at us to do things that our brains absolutely do not understand. And our brains are conditioned by the world to want to keep us safe, so you can't be so angry at the little bugger for trying to keep you in a safe bubble. But there's destruction in allowing our heads to always win.

The more we let our heads override our hearts, the less our hearts speak up until one day we're not really even sure of what it is we want anymore. And that is the worst. I'd rather be a person sure and passionate of the fact that I want to do something risky than someone who is absolutely undecided and therefore settles for the first average option that presents itself. Or so I've recently discovered.

I can't say I came upon this grand epiphany on my own though. Two summers ago a older man in a Goodwill recommended that I buy The Alchemist when he saw me eyeing the used books. While it freaked me out that this stranger was talking to me, I bought the book and only ended up reading it this past summer.

So to that guy, thank you. And to you all (all 5 of you who will read this) pick up the book and start letting your heart win.

Saturday, October 12, 2013

OVERTHINKING & OVERTALKING

I'm an overthinker, okay? I am. But when you think about it, what 20-something year old girl would say she isn't? (Only a care-free, dirty hippie, that's who!) I'm pretty fine with this once all of the the tiny details are confined to the noise in my head, but as I get older the more I notice that overthinking has turned me into an overtalker.

Let me present you with a story of overtalking from Audrey's Life Embarrassment Vault circa Summer '13:
Waiting in a NYC nightclub line that was longer than expected, I noticed a young, hip kid in a fitted cap slowly inch his way over to us in the way that young, hip kids do when they're trying to feel out the mood to start an unsolicited conversation. 
His line: "You guys are twins, right?" It was an age-old line, and while absolutely lame since WE WERE OBVIOUSLY NOT TWINS, just girls in unplanned similar outfits, our in-line boredom entertained it. We talked for a bit until he revealed that he was a club promoter and that he could get us in without having to pay the $40 cover charge that neither of us had. 
BINGO. So, with this new knowledge my friend and I turned up the charm and kept the conversation going. When he got back on to the topic of our appearance, as all young, hip kids do when they see ladies about, I decided to do more than passively smile. I talked.
Here are where the specifics get important, so I'll show you what we were wearing. Please ignore the sweaty forced pose on my behalf. My gurlfran looks great. 
Young, Hip Kid: "So you didn't plan this out? Because, it's like, the same exact look."
Us: "Noooooooooooooooooooo," and so forth.
YHK: Well, it looks good on you."
Me, just me: *joking tone* Yeah? So you like this color on us?
YHK: "Yeah, I just said that..." Topic switch here.
AWKAWKAWKAWKAWKWARDNESS

I'm not sure my friend noticed, but at that point I just decided that it would be best to not try to prolong a conversation with young, hip kid and just let him get us into the club. Which he did. And then we didn't see him again for the rest of the night.

After some more over thinking, I decided it was my fault to assume that he had the brainpower to humorously continue any kind of conversation and that not all people (especially young, hip kids) are the people you overtalk overthunk thoughts with.

*** But for the record, he did not, as he said "just say that." He said we looked good. I was just inquiring as to what looked good, giving the option of color. It was logical thought progression for an overthinker, I think. Right? 

Sunday, October 6, 2013

THINGS I'VE LEARNED

I'm not sure if this is a recent phenomenon in the 20somethings of the world, but I feel like we're all trying to self-help ourselves. I mean, #motivationalmondays is a thing. It could be that because of the internet, with its infinite knowledge, we're now all more self aware of our flawed selves (self absorbed, even) and so we want to make those selves better.

I really don't want to go too deep into whether or not 20somethings are just lost, wandering souls (we totes are), but I do want to share some blurbs that have helped, and are continuing to help, me make it through life alive. These blurbs of self-help have popped up on more than one occasion from various sources (friends, bosses, teachers, Tina Fey, a wise trash can sticker) so I believe them to be true.

1) Don't Be Afraid of 'No"
I am very afraid of being told no. When I hear no, it means I did or thought something wrong because obviously only wrong things get rejected. No one wants to be wrong! Right? Well, you're not right, self. That annoying two-letter word does not have to be the end of the world (as I once thought) and it definitely doesn't mean you're a failure. Sometimes even the mere thought that you (I) may hear no or fail is enough to stop you (me) from doing something that may work out perfectly.

2) It's Okay To Be A Bitch*
For a while I'd prided myself on being very agreeable. I was proud of the fact that just about everyone I knew generally liked me (something you're taught is important as a little girl, along with the idea that pink is best and only color ever). But the older I get, and the more difficult people become, the more I realize that it ain't easy trying to have everyone like you. That agreeable quality quickly started getting me into social situations I didn't like. I have my ideas, my methods and my qualities and at my age a lot of those are unwavering. When you're in the position to announce those freely (America, land of the free, duh), you should. Don't be deterred to feel the way you feel because the worst someone can do is call you a bitch. I'm currently managing a new group of girls and I'm sure they've called me a bitch a time or two behind my back, but you know what, I'M STILL YO' BOSS. Oh, and the asterisk is just to remind you to use your judgement. You don't have to go in guns blazing at everyone.

3) Be Excited About Something
I've noticed that if you're even slightly excited about what it is you are doing, you'll do it better. So find something that makes you excited, and then do it. Do it well. Do it often. And because it is the way of the world that things evolve, doing that something well enough will take you to finding your next something to be excited about.

4) Just Keep Going
I think a lot, long after things deserve being thought about. I'm a lingerer. I linger to my detriment because the time that I should be using to come back stronger than a powered up Pac-Man, I use instead to sulk. And sulking is just so counter productive. I believe that being down is human and very necessary to "the process," but if you stay there for too long it puts you in a funk (and not the good kind).

5) It's Not As Bad As You Think
It isn't, guys. It just isn't. We've established that I think a lot. My brain is really good at thinking itself into non-existent horrible situations based on what-ifs. And after that paranoia has taken hold, I'm left with a 10 ft. tall situation that is really only a 1 ft. tall issue. So know after all your late-night, can't-sleep over-thinking, it really will be fine.

6) You Are Golden
Just about every time I've doubted myself and gone against my gut feeling, I haven't been happy with the outcome. I truly believe that there is something in the universe that wants the best for us and we just get in the way of it with pesky self-doubt (or overbearing mother-doubt). Sometimes it's best to step back and trust yourself -- the yourself that you are when the world is quiet. Deep down in there somewhere, you know what's best for you.

Wow...you made it down here? What a trooper. Thanks! I hope you get some kind of comfort from all my blabbing. I'm still learning how to make these things a part of myself but I have a feeling that when I do it'll be pretty awesome. Same goes for you, kid.

Sunday, July 21, 2013

SUMMERTIME DOWNTIME

Those sunny summer days and long warm nights, ah yes! I spend those glorious days -- werking. Well, most of those days.

On my "Audrey-only" days it's easy to want to lay still and veg out (to combat my rigorous werking), so this summer I made a conscious effort to do things that are the opposite of vegging out.

Like loud fun concerts! Whoo- yeah! For about $10 a pop (can't afford Coachella here), I've gone to 3 concerts this summer and even though they're not sold-out arena shows I've had a damn good time.

If you want to share in the good jams, just click below.


Another thing that's caught my attention are movies. Now, I know there's nothing new to catching a summer blockbuster, but I've realized that there are sooooooo many good movies out there that aren't getting pushed to the forefront like the new superhero flick that still deserve to be watched.

I've assembled a list of movies-to-watch, which you are free to peruse -- so many good ones!

THANKS FOR SHARING
 
THE TO DO LIST 

THE SPECTACULAR NOW

Monday, June 3, 2013

LIFE A LITTLE LIVED

Summer, while not officially here, has pretty much started and keeping up the annual trend, I'm messing up. Well, not really messing up, but in the history of my life Summer has always provided me with a few interesting experiences. It must be the longer days (and sometimes even longer nights) that gives us what feels like more time to make all sorts of bad choices.

On this summer's list of experiences, I can claim a car accident. Joy of all joys. Getting into that accident made me feel like an absolute idiot of a person. It also made me see how unprepared I was for life's not-so-little bumps in the road. All in all it made me feel like a failed almost-adult.

Also, my man companion graduated from a fancy pants art school and I was completely proud of him, but as a self-centered millennial, I couldn't help but think about how not-graduated I was.

I made peace with the fact that I've slowed down school to work, but all the cap and gown pictures makes a girl wonder. I like what I do everyday and I while this may sound like a bad thing, I can feel myself aging thanks to it. I feel myself getting older in thought and that's something invaluable.

And this week, I get to go on a little buying trip with the boutique I work for. Something I never thought would be a part of my life's story, but something I love doing and wouldn't get to do otherwise. Hey, look at that -- I just stumbled upon the first great experience to add to my summer. And werk!

Monday, April 29, 2013

NO RISE, NO GRIND


Today, I woke up at ten in the morning and didn't leave my room to enter the world until 12:30 in the day. Appalling to all of the "rise-and-grinders" of the world, I'm sure. 

This grinding that people do so often, I wonder if it's similar to the grinding of gears. Because, if so, don't gears eventually - grind out?

Every motivational tweet and Tumblr image promotes hard work. And hard work most definitely has its value, but I'm beginning to feel that the days where you don't rise (more of a meander) or even grind are just as important to the process as say, tweeting about it. 

So, today, I went to Goodwill to donate the result of Spring cleaning and to shop. And behold, I found the perfect pair of summer shorts and a Dooney & Bourke I knew was just waiting for me. I drove around, with no real purpose, really. I enjoyed that I had nowhere pressing to be, with no one expecting me, running on a clock that was just mine. 

And then, when I came home, I cooked delicious carb-filled pasta and watched Hemlock Grove (absolutely terrible dramatic Netflix series).

 I was unproductive! I was a waste! And somehow, I feel like I accomplished everything I was supposed to. 

Do things that make you feel like you, just for you. Selfish, silly, random, even unproductive things (selfies included). It's okay and it's as important to your life as those 8 hours of work you're putting in somewhere.


Friday, April 19, 2013

CAN'T LOSE WITH 22

It's safe to say that I can be a very sentimental person, especially when it comes to words.

You know those letters you wrote in middle school, that traveled from hand-to-hand at the risk of being intercepted by a particularly stern teacher? I still have those. For all they went through to get to you, they're worth keeping. I feel the same way about cards. I've kept all of my birthday cards, as far back as 2003. I have a drawer full (that's not hoarding...).

This year, on the eve of my 22nd birthday, I dug through my drawer of memories and had a nice spell of nostalgia. And while digging through, I found a card from good, ol' 2009. From my favoritest Aunt of them all, the card probably went not understood by an 18-year-old me.

Reading it now, at 22, it spoke to me so much louder than it did then. The card means really means something now, and I'm happy that I kept it. And although it was given to me for my graduation, it's more importantly served as a guide to my 22-year-old self.

Maybe my aunt can help guide you too.