Letter to a lost soul.

Dear Self,

Hold on. I promise you that it won’t be this way forever. So please, I beg of you, hold on.

You might not know where this next year is going to take you and the sheer prospect of it might frighten you to your core, but I promise you that you can handle it. Good, bad, happy, sad, no matter what comes your way, you can handle it.

There’s a lot of unknowns right now. Even more than those unknowns, there’s a fucking lot going on that you cannot control. Please don’t let that weigh on your heart.

I know that you can get overwhelmed at times, feeling like there’s really nothing in this world you can do to make things better. It’s times like these that I encourage you to remember that it is not always you responsibility to carry the weight of the world. As much as I know you’re not a religious person, try to remember the sentiment to the statement ‘let go and let god’. Because putting everyone’s burdens on yourself is a really hard way to live.

Please don’t be afraid of the future. Don’t be afraid for opportunities, or lack thereof. Like the lyrics say ‘what is meant to be will be’, and if it never comes to fruition then it wasn’t meant to happen.

Stop worrying about money. You’ll always find a way to get the money – whether it takes a week, a month, a year or ten years.

Stop worrying about time. There is no rule that says you need to have an established life by a certain time. This is your life and you determine the time frame of which things happen, no one else.

Stop worrying about not being good enough. Worry about leaving a lasting impression on the world, especially your friends and your family. Worry about improving yourself daily and about making people’s lives better.

Hold on, self.

Hold on for dear life.

Work had, self.

Even with all the bad there is in this world, you can be good. You can lead by example and you can make change.

Be kind, self.

You never know what sort of challenges someone is facing or how hard of a time they might be having. Perhaps all they need is someone to show them genuine kindness.

Love yourself, self.

Regardless of the insecurities you might see when you look in the mirror, you’re a pretty fucking amazing person. And while you may see those insecurities so clearly, I promise you that the people who really matter to you, they don’t. And even if they could, I’m pretty sure they wouldn’t care. It’s a nice feeling being loved and appreciated for exactly who you are, so stop letting those insecurities dictate your happiness. Let people love you for exactly who you are.

Regardless of what happens, you can and will get through this. It may seem like insurmountable demons right now, but I promise you that one day you’re going to look back on these times and be proud.

Hold on, self. I promise you that it won’t be this way forever. So please, I beg of you, hold on.

Sincerely, Me

Don’t wait for the new year for resolutions. Things for you to quit TODAY

  1. Trying to please everyone.
  2. Fearing change.
  3. Living in the past.
  4. Overthinking.
  5. Being afraid to be different from everyone else.
  6. Sacrificing your happiness for others.
  7. Thinking you’re not good enough.
  8. Thinking you have no purpose.

People always wait for New Year’s Day to make resolutions and honestly, why? Make these resolutions today. Make change today. Better yourself today. You deserve it. You’re worth it. Don’t wait for some arbitrary day to try and change you thinking – start to try and change the way you think today.

It’s not going to be easy. And it’s not going to happen at the snap of your fingers. But if you make the effort to enrich your life with serious changes that will ultimately benefit you long-term, the change will be worth it.

Do it. Do it today.

Millennial Mental Health

I don’t always like talk about it but my mental health is something that I am cognizant of on a daily basis. I want to make sure that I’m taking the necessary steps to look after myself and my well being.

I think that all too often millennials are criticized in the media, and in life, for being so open about mental health struggles. In reality, I don’t think we’re the first generation to have struggles with mental health, I just think that we’re the first generation to be open and honest about it.

I’m 99% positive that my father struggles with severe anxiety and 100% positive that he never has, nor will he ever, admit to that. It’s just not something that his generation does. Nevertheless, I digress.

Some days, I get lucky and there’s not a lot going on. Those are the days when I find the most calm. Those are the days when I am most alright with the world around me. I don’t have to put on a happy face, I don’t have to pretend with anyone, I can just be me. I appreciate those days.

And please don’t get me wrong, it’s not that I’m miserable. I’m not. I could be happier though. Because of this, it just gets exhausting trying to be happy-go-lucky for people. I know they don’t want to see me actual mood, so I spend a lot of my time wearing a mask.

Recently I saw a video of a reporter asking Meghan Markle ‘are you okay? Meghan, stunned at the reporter said ‘Not many people actually ask me that’. While I can’t even imagine what it’s like to be a member of the British Royal Family, seeing her answer actually broke my heart a little bit because I know there are so many people in the world who are trying to hide their struggle and put on that mask to not be a burden to those around them.

It is so important that we find places and spaces where we can be honest, both with ourselves and with other humans. That we can find a common ground and admit that not everything is okay all of the time and that is okay.

Millennials are keenly aware of our identity, where we fit into society and the struggles that come with that. I don’t think that makes us whiners like society paints us out to be. Personally, I think that makes us stronger. If you’re willing to acknowledge your demons, you’re more likely to face them head on.

How am I? I’m doing okay today. It’s one of those good days where there aren’t many people around and there isn’t a ton going on. I don’t have to put on the mask, I can just be. I’ve been laying pretty low this week to try and rest/get healthy again, so I think another low-key day will be good for me. My thoughts are a little sporadic, but I am hanging in there.

It’s important to remember to be good to yourself. Remember to treat yourself. Remember to look after yourself. Self-care is about doing things to look after yourself long-term. It isn’t about instant or short-term gratification.

Whatever generation you’re a part of, be good to yourself today, and every day. You’re worth it and your well being depends on it.

There are days…

There are days when I struggle to look at myself in the mirror.

There are days when I don’t believe that I’m worthy of anything I have in this life.

There are days when I just don’t feel capable of basic human function. Everything seems too difficult and too complicated for me to even comprehend.

There are days when I wonder what I did wrong to wind up this… scared, selfish and stupid.

There are days when I question everything.

Oh, there are days.

There are days when everything bothers me. People chewing. Rain falling. Wind gusting. It’s all annoying and there’s nothing I can do but just see it through.

There are days when it’s hard to zip my lips and to stay out of it.

There are days when I want to give up, run away, leave it all behind.

There are days when I am so out of touch with myself that I look back and I think ‘who the fuck was that person?’

Oh there are days.

The most important thing to remember through all of this? That without the bad days we cannot appreciate the good. That the good people in our lives, they’ll be there whether we’re in a good mood or a bad. Whether we’re easy to get along with or we couldn’t be trying harder to push them away.

We need to remember that these bad days remind us that we’re human. That struggle is real and that we shouldn’t diminish the value of it when it comes. Because struggle teaches us. It makes us stronger. It shows us what we’re truly capable.

There are days when it feels a though the world is crashing down around me. But those days, as with all things in life, they too shall pass…

#WorldMentalHealthDay

You are good enough. You are strong enough.

You are worthy, beautiful and capable. You can and will defeat your demons and you will move those mountains that have been holding you back. So care.

Care about life. Care about everything and everyone and stop telling yourself to not. Most importantly, care about yourself.

Give a damn. Make sure that you know that you matter. Look after yourself. Believe in yourself. Say good things about yourself. Why? Because maybe if you hear it enough, you’ll stop doubting it. Wouldn’t it be nice to stop second-guessing yourself? Yeah, it would. So start reminding yourself of how fucking amazing you are. No more self-deprecation and no more negativity, just positivity and light.

Only you have the capability to see yourself through this darkness. While others can contribute to your happiness in small ways, no one can rescue from this sadness, anxiousness and despair but you. And trust me when I say this, you’re more than capable of rescuing yourself. So do it.

Take those small steps, E-V-E-R-Y DAY. Celebrate those small victories when they come. Your confidence depends on it. Take advantage of help when given to you because… god damn, pushing people away hasn’t ever gotten you anywhere. And exercise. Exercise every day. Because if you want to take care of your mind, you need to take care of your whole body. Rescue yourself.

You have the power within you to make serious changes in your life. Stop fighting the things you cannot control and conquer the things you can. I know you’ve got the power, you know you’ve got the power, so don’t let those voices in your head win.

Take care of yourself, please. You’re too valuable not to.

The best things about unemployment

Photo from: healthland.time.com

Switching gears from my ‘worst of unemployment’ lists, I wanted to talk about the positives that have come with unemployment. Because the pendulum still does swing, and there is still good in this world, no matter how sad I might get sometimes.

Unemployment sucks, but here are a few reasons why it has is bonuses:

Getting rid of that soul-sucking boss. Honestly, my last boss was a misogynistic overgrown frat-boy who ran an office like it was a locker-room and treated women as though the only thing we brought to the table were short skirts and an ability to fetch coffee. He didn’t think that I was qualified to fill my roll, didn’t believe that I deserved the position and made it open in the office that he really didn’t like me. Leaving him behind was an incredible gift for my psyche.

Getting rid of that soul-sucking office. My last office was the equivalent of a men’s locker room. Women were rated based on their looks, told to wear short skirts to meetings and treated as though we brought no value to the office and it was ‘a gift’ they were even letting us live in the presence of the men who worked there. Time after time after time I really didn’t want to go to work. The job itself wasn’t bad, but the people – they were so… awful. They were the type of people who made me not want to get out of bed in the morning. The type of people who would take credit for my work and then publicly (and I mean in the newspaper) shame me if something didn’t get done on time. Leaving them behind took a big burden off my shoulders and my heart. And I can honestly say, there isn’t a soul in that office that I miss.

Being able to take more time for myself. Prior to unemployment all that I did was work. All the time. Monday through Friday I was at the office from 8:30 to 6:30, sometimes 7:30 or 8:30. I worked most weekends and I never really did anything for fun. Since being unemployed, I’ve been able to do the things I’ve always wanted to do that I never got a day off for. I’ve been to the Ice Magic Festival at Lake Louise, done the air bubbles walk of Abraham Lake, hiked the largest ancient inland rainforest on earth, spent some time in Niagara Falls and Toronto, taken more than 10,000 miles worth of roadtrips and so much more that I haven’t even shared on his blog. And you know what? It’s been a dream come true.

Helping my family. As much as I like to rag on my family for the things they do to frustrate me, I’m also really grateful that I’ve had the opportunity to help them this year. Let me tell you, driving someone to the cancer clinic every day, cleaning up puke in the middle of the night, is hard for any person to face. I commend my dad for looking after my mom to the extent that he did because he really stepped up and did an incredible job, but I’m also grateful that I was able to be here and to help. Because when it’s family, you do what you can do.

It’s allowed me more time to write. To create. To build this blog. To take credit for my own writing. To say what I want to say. I know that it sounds counter-intuitive, claiming that I get credit for my writing on a blog that’s nearly anonymous (I say nearly because three people now know who I am). When I was working, I was writing all of the time for my job. I was writing things that my boss would take credit for, I was writing things that people from other companies would take credit for. I was specifically supposed to write things as though they sounded like they were coming from other people and not me. On the off chance that I did get credit for an article that I put together, I was reprimanded for not giving the article to my boss before sending it out. Here, I can say what I want, when I want. I may not have a face on this blog, but I have a person. And I value the person I get to be here… spelling mistakes in all.

It builds your strength and resilience. Rejection after rejection after rejection sucks. It sucks so hard I often break down in tears because I just don’t know what else to do. I will say though, no matter how many rejections I’ve had this year, I’ve always kept trying and I have always kept going. When it seems like it’s the easiest thing in the world to just give up, I won’t. I’m not going to give up. I’m reminded that I have the strength to get through this and I will damn well get the life I want and deserve. I know this now more than ever. Even on my bad days a piece of me still knows this deep down.

There are pros and cons to everything in this life. And for me, its a consistent fault of mine that I’m not always able to see the good. Today, though, today I wanted to remind myself of what good has come from this.


If you’e interested, my unemployment journey is detailed here >

If you’re interested, my travel diaries, tips and thoughts are detailed here >

The worst things about unemployment part two

Photo from GFMAG.COM

Anyone who’s been unemployed for any length of time knows what it’s like to feel as though you don’t have a voice, a value or a place in this world. They understand what it’s like working hard to find work and ‘playing the game’ of the potential employer, to no avail, just waiting for your day in the sun.

Unemployment sucks and here are a few reasons why:

Being told you’re living easy. This one annoys the crap out of me. People think that if you’re not going to work each day, you’re not contributing, you bring no value to this world or their lives so all you’re doing is sitting on the couch watching Netflix. And since all you’re doing is sitting on the couch watching Netflix all day, you must not have any real problems and thus your life is inherently more easy than those with jobs. It’s a shitty assumption people make.

When people ask you what you do for a living. Do you tell the truth and deal with the awkward conversation that will follow? Do you lie and pretend that you do something you do not as a means to save face? Either way, it’s going to be awkward.

Being unemployed plays a contributing factor in many health concerns. Unemployment can lead to depression, low self-esteem, anxiety, and other mental-health issues that affect every aspect of your life… and there’s really nothing you can do about it, especially if you truly want a job and it doesn’t seem to be happening, no matter how hard you try. It can cause serious tension, stress and strain on the body.

Being an adult is so much more enjoyable when you have money. It’s true. And when you’re not making bank, or you’re struggling to make bank through side hustle after side hustle after side hustle, sometimes it just feels like it’s all you can do to keep the side hustle. You’re not enjoying life, you’re just trying to stay afloat and stop the feeling of drowning.

Rejection emails. I’m talking about the finely-tuned art of an automated response that somehow manages to very succinctly, professionally, and somehow brutally, crush your hopes and dreams with the kind of disengaged effort that is, by true dictionary standards, effortless. You’re reminded of just how little they care about you (and all job hunters) and just how far removed we’ve come from basic human interaction… because it’s all automated, no-response email addresses these days.

No response from a company whatsoever. I’ve noticed a distinct trend on Indeed and LinkedIn in which, if the company doesn’t find a resume they like, they’ll simply delete the job posting and repost it to present day so that it appears at the top of the list of most recent listings. You don’t get a response as to why you’re not being considered, you don’t get to know why you’re not good enough and you don’t get an email to ask them WTF! I’ve seen postings appear 5 or 6 times over the past few months.

You become so used to rejection that you begin to expect it in other areas of your life as well. This plays a lot to do with the low self-esteem mentioned above. Picture this – you meet a man or a woman in the bar and you really hit it off. After swapping phone numbers you head home for the evening and then you’re hit with it… the doubt you have about yourself. The fear of rejection and the bracing of yourself for when you don’t hear from said person ever again. It’s a serious mind-fuck that allows you to start to believe you’re not worthy of people, places or things, let alone the job that started the whole avalanche.

Trying to talk about it with people is a struggle. When you’re stressed it helps immensely to talk about it with someone. When you’re unemployed, you’re heavily stressed out. Trying to talk about this with anyone isn’t really an option though because they either don’t understand because they’ve never been through it, or they just don’t give a damn because, if it’s not their problem, they don’t want to hear about it.

You feel guilty about actually treating yourself. There’s a notion carried in society that if you’re unemployed you should not be enjoying yourself and you should not do something for yourself or have fun of any sort. So, if you do take the chance to do something for yourself to try and boost your self-esteem or make yourself happy, even if just for a few hours, you inevitably end up feeling guilty for doing such action because… you’re unemployed, and thus should not be spending your money on what is deemed frivolous things.

Receiving unsolicited advice. Because when you’re unemployed everyone has an opinion about what you should do and everyone wants to share their opinions with you. The fact of the matter is, with the exception of a very few close people, no one truly knows what you’re going through, what you’ve done or what you’re presently trying to do to find work. Unsolicited advice often come with the assumption that you’re just not trying, that you just don’t care and that you just aren’t capable. Rather than taking the time to ask and learn, invest in you to ensure their help is worthwhile, they just take their assumptions and start throwing opinions your direction. These opinions aren’t helpful and can often add a lot more stress to your days.

Being too good for some jobs is a fucking joke. I have a Bachelor’s Degree and ten year’s of industry experience… and I have had to ‘dumb-down’ my resume to even get retail places to take me seriously. I’ve been turned down from Wal-Mart, MacDonalds, Burger King, and so on and so forth, because they believe if they hire me, I’ll leave right away. Because of this I’m in an awkward stage in which career positions don’t seem to consider me a viable candidate and retail positions consider me not a worthy investment and thus, I can’t even get a job as a cashier. Life happens. Sometimes people have to deviate from the plan, you would think that potential employers would be understanding of that fact. But no. I dumbed down my resume, took my education and experience off of it, applied to be a cashier at a local grocery store. When I went to the interview I thought it was going great and the store manager loved me! Within two hours of leaving the interview I had a rejection email in my inbox. I can’t even pretend to be dumb to get a job it seems.

People assuming you want to be unemployed. If you’re unemployed for a certain length of time, people genuinely assume that you just don’t want a job.

Jumping through ridiculous hoops to try and find a job in 2019. Companies are asking for ten references, for you to record 15 minute videos of yourselves to submit for them to review with your resume, asking you to fill out application questionnaires that can often take upwards of an hour per application, to take aptitude after aptitude test that prove nothing more than an ability for deductive reasoning. NONE of what they are doing in this time involves having an actual conversation with you.


Read:

The worst things about unemployment >

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