I find this question really interesting to ask people because there are so many different ways a person can approach this question.
There’s people who’ll say “a million dollars” and people who’ll say “I don’t want a thing”. There’s people who’ll say items that they really know and love, and people who’ll provide practical options they know that person can afford. Some people even ask for donations to be made in lieu of gifts.
Honestly, to me, what people provide as an answer tells me a lot about who they are. Not that any one answer is better than another. Well, perhaps some answers are better than other’s. If you told me you wanted to kick a puppy for Christmas then I’d think you’re a bad person But, that was a huge tangent and I should get back on track. For the most part, when people answer this question, I really think it tells you a lot about who they are. I read a lot into what people ask for Christmas.
Me? People look at me oddly when I say it, but I tend to tell people that I want the staples for Christmas gifts. Shampoo, conditioner, body wash, toothpaste, makeup remover… these types of things. Is that weird? Possibly. My thoughts behind it is, if people give me these things as gifts, and I can use them for the next 3-6 months (or longer depending on what they give me) then that’s expenses that I don’t have to worry about. It’s practical to me. And I think that’s really thoughtful. I mean, whoever buys me those things are going to be giving me something that I’ll like and get use from.
Decorative blankets are great and all but there’s only so many of them a girl needs, ya know? And heavens, I’ve got enough clothes, shoes and accessories. I don’t need any more. Of course I’m always thankful for someone thinking of me, but if someone is going to go ahead and spend their money on me, I just hope they’d take me seriously when I say I want thinks like shampoo and toothpaste, etc…
I’m curious to know, what do you want for Christmas? Are you the ‘ask for everything’ type? Are you the ‘ask for something I know they can afford’ type? Are you the ‘I don’t want anything’ type? Or do you prefer experiences over tangible gifts?
It’s nearly 11 PM on the West Coast and I’ve been thinking about hitting ‘Publish’ on this post all day. Here goes…
10 whole months that I’ve been pouring my heart out to the internet. 10 whole months that I’ve questioned everything that I’ve written and posted it anyways. 10 whole months that I’ve spent meeting and talking to some of the most incredible souls I’ve ever crossed paths with. 10 months of learning – new facts, new perspectives, new understandings. It’s been one hell of a time, if I do say so.
I made this blog on a whim, with the encouragement of Knight. I wanted a place to rant about the things going on in my life and boy did this platform give me the opportunity to do that and then some.
As much as nothing has changed in the past ten months, everything has changed. I think of the sad shell of a human being that I was ten months ago, I look at myself in the mirror and see the resilient fighter I am today and I’m thankful for what I am becoming. I have a much better grasp on my anxiety (though I still struggle, I can control it a lot better) and I have much more of an understanding of who I am and who is important to me.
Why is ten months an important landmark to me? Because I’m proud of what I’ve accomplished in the past ten months. I’m proud of what this blog has become. I’m profoundly appreciative of the people I’ve met and the stories you’ve shared with me. I talk a lot about my appreciation for the WordPress platform because I wholeheartedly believe this blog has given a great boost to my confidence in the past ten months.
To those of you who’ve been along for the ride since the very beginning, thank you. I love you. And to those of you who’ve only recently found this blog, thank you. I owe you.
Ten months. I’m humbled. I’m grateful. I’m thankful.
To celebrate ten months of WordPress, here are ten facts about me:
I am female. (I am including this because there seems to be some confusion lately… with some people thinking that I am a man)
I have blue eyes and blonde hair and was consistently referred to as Barbie for the first thirteen years of my life because people told me that I looked like a little doll.
I will turn 31 next month, and even with all that has gone on in the past year, I will still say that my 30s have been infinitely better than my 20s thus far.
When editing someone else’s work, I can pick out spelling and grammar mistakes within seconds of reading it. When editing my own work, I can read it five times over and still not notice where I’ve made my errors. And there are always errors.
Recently, Geneva posed a suggestion to me that I consider writing an EBook. I haven’t admitted it out loud, but I am genuinely considering doing it, using it as a means to give out my marketing advice for free by having a company sponsor it. It’s all just a thought at this point in time, but I can’t get it out of my head since Geneva planted the seed.
I have a scar shaped like a Lightning Bolt on my thumb that my friend’s have referred to as proof of my being related to Harry Potter.
One of my most memorable moments was standing with Team Canada as they were presented their gold medals
One of my proudest moments was the day one of my heroes complimented me on my intelligence and told met that I was going to change the world one day.
As a whole, I do not believe that you ever fall out of love with someone. I simply believe that two people can understand they’re not meant to be together and that’s why they divorce. I do believe that love you feel for someone will always stay with you.
I like to eat raw onions. (Yeah, I had to end with this one)
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.
My nephew slept in the spare room last night. We call the spare room his room because he’s the only one who ever sleeps in there. Anyway, he asked what happened to the mattress and why he had to sleep on an air mattress. When I told him that we gave the mattress to the woman across the street for her and her daughter he asked why she needed a new mattress and why she didn’t just go and buy one. I told him that she got in a fight with her husband and that she needed a new place to sleep for a few nights. His response? “Well, you should have given her my blanket too.” What a sweet soul my nephew is. I really do believe he makes me a better person just by hanging out with him.
My mom made her very first sale on Etsy. She’s so proud of herself and she’s so happy that someone wanted to purchase something she made. It’s nice to see a little ambition in her. She’s already talking about making more and putting more up on her Etsy store. It is nice to her so excited about something.
There are some new neighbours (I call them neighbours because they’re on the street they’re not right next door) who have three little pugs. The pugs name’s are Huey, Dewey and Louie. I want all of them. I think I’m going to make best friends with these people just so that I can hang out with their dogs.
I have so many different posts in my drafts folder right now I’m torn between deleting them all or posting them all at once. I just… I don’t know what to do with them.
I’m not really sure what to say on the matter. It’s obviously not the outcome that I wanted. It’s obviously not the outcome that I thought was going to happen. I got my hopes up for this. I really thought this was it, this was my opportunity for growth, for a my next career move, to work for an organization that didn’t break the law and ask me to cover it up. There were so many bonuses to working in this office and I’m kicking myself right now because I don’t get any of them.
I can’t even be mad. I’m not mad. It’s an incredible company and I know they’ve got to do what they feel is right for them. I just can’t help but feel as though they made the wrong choice. And, in their making the wrong choice, I’ve lost out.
It sucks. It really does.
All of my worst fears seem to be coming to fruition. I’m too qualified to work in retail, not qualified to work at these jobs that I’ve been working towards for a decade. Job hunting sucks. It really does. I’m squandering all of my talents and there’s nothing I can do about that.
I wholeheartedly believe there is a distinct difference between travelling and being a tourist. Tourism is a commercial product. I liken it to that of holding a movie pass. You’re experiencing something different without ever actually leaving your comfort zone. It’s safe. It’s easy. Travelling, on the other hand, has a lot more to do with exploring and immersing yourself into a time, place and culture that you don’t understand. Travelling is a mindset that you want to be as much a part of your destination as it is a part of you.
Big cities might be filled with tourists, while travellers are those who follow the less beaten paths of this globe. The rewards might be great in either category, depending on what you’re looking for, but I happen to be a firm believer in travel over tourism. If you’re going to take the time and money to go somewhere – truly go there. Immerse yourself in the adventure.
Step outside of your comfort zone. Travelling allows one to leave order and conformity and move towards the unknown. Pushing yourself out of that comfort zone can teach you just how far into the unknown you’re willing to go and just what potential you might be capable of.
Escape your routines. Use travel as a tool to beak your behavioural patterns that keep you in the ‘daily grind’. Travel can provide that much needed escape from the world you hold so dear, but need a break from every now and again to avoid burnout. Scheduling your travels gives you something to look forward too and allows you to know when your next break is coming, when your next escape is waiting.
It’s a free education. The last thing that you want to do is travel with the belief that you know everything. You’ll be shocked by your own ignorance. There’s too much to this world that you don’t know and haven’t learned yet. Travelling gives you an opportunity for that education that a classroom can’t teach and it also shows you just how much you don’t know.
You’re exposed to new ideas and beliefs. While people often fear what they don’t know, or don’t understand, travelling puts you into situations where you’re forced to see these circumstances firsthand, witnessing that which can forever change you from there on out.
The more you explore, the more you realize how complex human life is. And it’s hard to acknowledge that so few people will get to experience/know that within their lifetime.
It increases your problem solving skills. It can be easy at home to go about your day in the same monotonous way as you’ve done over and over before. Drop yourself in a new location in a part of the world and you’ll be faced with a need to solve problems you’ve never faced in your daily grind. Reading a map in a foreign language is a problem that you’re going to have to learn to solve.
Experiences come with expiration dates. This one is important. Who you are right here and now is not who you will be after you get married or have children or go through other changes in your life. The way that you experience a country/place/destination right now won’t always be the same. Someone who’s just out of highschool, backpacking through Europe will experience it in a completely different way than a retired couple. That’s not to say you won’t enjoy a trip when you’re a retired couple with your spouse, that’s just to say – are you really ready to give up on the experiences you could be having right now for the one day? For the some day?
Honestly, I’d take experiences over new shoes any day. I’m a firm believer in the statement ‘Collect Moments, not things’. Furthermore, moments and memories are the only form of wealth you can gain that give yourself that doesn’t diminish in time.
There’s so much more to travel than seeing a landmark or taking a selfie in front of a monument. Don’t get me wrong – those moments are pretty great too. Everyone needs a selfie in front of the Eiffel Tower. But, for me, the importance of travel is about who you become when you go to a place, the person that you get to be and the person you transform into based on the situations you’re immersed in.
There’s really, genuinely important reasons for you to squander away your extra money. There’s a whole world out there to see. And yes, there are some material things in life that are important for you to purchase. But I guess, the point of this ramble from me is that there are so many important reasons to start putting that money aside and to be saving it for your next adventure.
Belting out 80’s music, at the top of my lungs, to my two Chihuahuas is a pretty big highlight of my life. I’m pretty sure they hate every second of it, but they stick around and listen and watch my theatrics because they love me.
Chihuahuas are so loyal. Or stupid. lol.
Every breath you take Every move you make Every bond you break Every step you take I’ll be watching you
Picture mirrors breaking and windows starting to crack.