What’s in my toolbox?

Hello again,

I am sorry that I have been gone for so long.

I left because I had begun to feel that writing here, on a blog, was powerless. That posting my views, albeit onto the internet, was never going to spark the change that I so crave. However, having returned I have been contradicted, and I must add how glad I am to be wrong.

So much has happened it is hard to know where to begin. But upon deliberating over what to focus on, I found my inspiration right under my nose (as I often do!)

Power. Power is what I gain from writing. Writing gives me a voice outside of my bedroom, or my classroom. My words carry me far further than my feet and writing is a ticket to everything I could ever imagine all at once. But how we use power, is an ever changing topic.

The power I have at my finger tips is within media; mass communication. Talking, is now not only done fact to face, or down the telephone. No, now we can give out our message in a myriad of different forms, writing a blog included.

When we are given such a beautiful tool as media. Through which endless ideas, plans, and nuggets of information can be shared.  Therefore I find it heart rendering when man abuses such utensil.

In my opinion, media should not be used to ‘brainwash’ nor to force, or blackmail. Media should not be used to extend the reach of harm, but extend the reach of help.

When huge numbers of people face hopelessness, let us give a hand of aid, not an arm of hatred.

 

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Say when

‘Say when  you want me to stop [pouring], ‘ we are often told when someone is filling our glass.  We aren’t told ‘Tell me how far from the top you want it. ‘  This is a very literal illustration of the ‘glass half full/glass half empty’ mentality.

The glass half full people see what we have,  appreciate it,  and don’t think about what they don’t have.  It is positive and optimistic. 

The glass half empty people see what they don’t have (but others do), they can’t see what they actually do have,  or give thanks for it.  They frequently worry about what they don’t have. It is negative and pessimistic.

In my opinion the first one is healthier,  however in modern society I think the latter is more common.

Modern society brings many conveniences like technology,  and  easier transport,  but also brings pressure.  More than ever people are bombarded with goods and products that they can buy and pressured into wanting them.

Things. Lots of them.  They are available to us with a magic key.  Money. I don’t want to make it sound like our whole existence is based on those two nouns,  but the fact that we live in a materialistic age is unavoidable.

We live in a time where many will judge you on material,  physical possessions and belongings. They have meanings and statements attached to them.  A handbag can often feel like more than a bag to carry your purse and keys. It reflects your taste,  in what you think looks good. It reflects how much money you are prepared to spend on a handbag. Possibly how much money you have.

For many people things,  inanimate objects have emotions attached to them.  It can be upsetting if they don’t have that bagThat bag can bring much joy.

But when has it gone too far, and when is enough enough? When are we going to say that things don’t matter that much?  What is now more important to us?  Friends,  family and other human beings, or accessories that are so ‘significant’,  along with their respective connotations?

I think society needs to start shifting away from this obsession with goods,  and it is something I want to try to do more.  Remembering what really matters,  and what is in actual fact not important. Trying to not get caught up in the desire to posses that we have been conditioned to have,  and thinking more about the more meaningful but less substantial experiences we can have in life.

I leave you with the Oscar Wilde quote: “Nowadays people know the price of everything and the value of nothing. “

Hindsight is a funny thing

What do I wish someone had told me 5 years ago?
To answer that question I need to take a look at my circumstances, which have changed since then.

5 years ago I was still at my local school, which my brother had just outgrown and left for a bigger school. I had friends, I loved school, I can remember having some very kind teachers. Both my parents worked, as they do now, I think my mum picked me up from school most days as it wasn’t till I was 9 that I got a house key. My nickname was alien, I don’t know why.

What knowledge do I think would have been valuable, that I didn’t have then, but do I have now?
I wish I had known that it is perfectly alright to not be normal, to be a bit weird. I can remember putting a great deal of effort into ‘fitting in’ and being like everyone else. I would tell myself to not let the opinions of others hold me back, and not to limit myself to what they think of me, because you are the only one who has to live this life, and you should live it how it suits you. As long as your decisions have no negative impacts on anyone else then you should do it.
I know now that we are all different, and that it is more common than I thought back then to not feel accepted for who I was.

Although now I preach this, it would be far more difficult for the 8 year old me to practise it. The appeal I once saw for being ‘normal’ is far less relevant. I used to think being normal would make more people like me and stop the names. I thought being normal would give me a sense of belonging. Now I am nearer to be where I ‘belong’.

This is purely hypothetical though, and if I’m honest I don’t think I do wish that I had know that. Because if I had known that I would have missed part of the journey to get where I am now. I wouldn’t have learnt some of the lessons that I have, and ultimately I would be a different me.

What do I think I will wish I had known now, in 5 years time?

In 5 years time, again, lots will have changed.

I think I will wish I had stood back and appreciated the moment more. I spend a lot of my time currently longing to move out of my small town, to a more exciting city. But I should realise that I do live in a beautiful place, if I look at it with the right eyes. I also spend a lot of time wishing I had more rights and freedoms that I will gain with age. However with rights come responsibilities, and I should enjoy the relative calm I therefore have now. I will probably wish that I had spent more time with my family. My grandparents aren’t getting any younger, nor are my parents. My brother and the cousins who I have grown up with, will soon either starting work or go to university. Like me, they will go down their chosen paths. Life now can seem chaotic and busy with school, but you only have one family, and they won’t be here forever.

It is funny how our lives can sometimes seem so problematic. We can feel helpless and confused, not knowing what to do next. Sometimes a little reflection can do wonders, giving you security in reminiscing where we have been and where we will therefore possibly go.

What do you wish you had known five years ago? What do you think you will learn in the next 5?