You are not an excuse – making machine

You are not an excuse – making machine. God, I wish someone had told me this sooner because for the last 22 years, I’ve been an excuse – making machine. When people would wrong me, treat me bad I would make the excuses for them. If a guy played me, lied to me or if a friend cut me out of their life I would just make an excuse for them in the lines of “He/She is going through a lot now”, “The job is stressing him/her out”, “I know he cares, he’s just too scared to show it”. Damn, I really am a writer. Always making stuff up, explaining, elaborating, making everything poetic.  I need to put an end to this and so do you. Yes, you.

Making excuses for someone’s behavior is stupid, selfish and harmful all at the same time. This is especially noticeable in relationships so I will take them as examples to explain my point better. Let’s start with why this is harmful behavior. If you constantly make excuses for someone, it means that you are constantly ignoring all of the red flags in a relationship and you will end up hurt in the end. We all ignore red flags because we want to believe that the person we met is great but what we are doing is not. You need to be objective. If you feel like someone is ghosting you, ignoring you and only calling you when they are bored or horny then don’t make an excuse for them. They are not busy, they don’t have a lot on their plate, the little attention they give you isn’t anything special – see them for who they are. Not interested in you.

Now, why making excuses for others is stupid. Because it just is. You are actually giving a free pass to someone who is obviously telling you lies, neglecting you, playing with your feelings. You are literally making it easy for her/him to hurt you and that’s just stupid. It’s hard when you like someone, or even when you’re in love with someone, to admit that the person doesn’t want you. It’s hard to stop inventing fairytales about the person we like and admit they are not who we believe them to be. I honestly think that people fall in love more with the people they imagine in their heads than the real people standing in front of them. I think that the best way to stop making excuses for someone is to stop reading too much into the situation. You got dressed up, ready to go and meet him/her for a night out and they cancel with some lame excuse such as my head hurts or suddenly they have a family emergency. I’m not saying stuff like this has to be false but if it’s happening repetitively then it’s probably lies. You need to accept they are not being honest, don’t answer their messages and just try to let go before you fall in too deep.

And my favorite one. Making excuses for others is selfish. You probably think I am not really normal to write this since making excuses for other’s is literally handing someone an excuse so they would continue doing their thing, you are actually doing them a favor but that’s just what we see on the surface. The underlying issue of it is that you can’t accept the truth because it would hurt you so you make those excuses for him/her in order to make yourself feel better and to feel loved by someone. Just to feel that someone actually cares. This is harmful behavior and to be honest, I am guilty of this. Often, when I would feel alone or when I would get attached to someone I would become a victim of this type of behavior and it’s incredibly difficult to break this cycle. We all have the need to have someone around and then it’s just hard to accept that the person we thought was around well… isn’t. Probably never was. The time you spend making excuses for someone, spend doing something that will make you feel better. Turn off the movie in your head, stop replaying everything that happened, stop asking questions you will not get an answer to and go and run, workout, meditate, read a book, get blackout drunk (but give your phone to someone first). Do something other than digging your own grave.

If you feel like I just stabbed you and started twisting the knife inside of you, don’t worry I feel the same because all of this that I’m writing I need to start applying to myself so maybe, possibly I will be strong enough to take better care of myself. No matter how weird it sounds, sometimes taking care of oneself is the hardest thing to do so we indulge in behaviors as making excuses for others, becoming extremely depended on other people, getting attached to quickly to others, neglecting our own needs to constantly cater to others so that they would like us etc. I could go on forever but we’ll leave those subjects for other posts. Just stay strong and work on loving yourself more.

Sending love and positive vibes,
Luna

How do we make ourselves unhappy?

I’m going through a lot lately and I started writing a post about it but I think it will take me a while to write it but in the process I started thinking about the way we make ourselves miserable. It’s hard to admit to ourselves that our actions and thoughts make us unhappy because we always accuse somebody else of being the reason for our misery.

We are so determined to make our lives work out the way we plan that we completely ignore the concept of change being a good thing. We have our eyes set on the prize and we don’t know how to enjoy the competition for it. Let’s imagine life like a car ride. You can stay on the road in your little car always but you will forget what’s it like to use your own legs to take you places. If you don’t venture outside your world you’ll never experience new things or maybe find a new dream for yourself. Let go of the steering wheel and let adventure consume your life.

Most of the negativity in our life comes right out of our mouths. It’s like we try to make ourselves feel bad. I can’t do this, I can’t go there, I’m fat, I’m ugly etc. Stop kicking yourself down. Each and every one of us has a great potential inside and we crush it by holding ourselves back. Stop saying it’s impossible, stop saying you aren’t good enough and STOP GIVING UP ON THINGS YOU HAVEN’T TRIED! Let positivity enter your mind and you’ll see how much happier you’ll be.

Tomorrow. The incredible land where all our dreams, hopes, aspirations and beginnings exist. We’ll do everything tomorrow. That tomorrow should turn into now. You want a good grade? Open that book now. Want to lose weight? Start eating healthier now. You want that promotion? Start fighting for it now. You want to save your relationship? Talk to your partner now. Tomorrow is the future and you control it by your actions that are supposed to happen now!

Technology and development made it possible for us to acquire anything in a matter of seconds and, you maybe don’t believe it, but that speed and availability of everything is making us unhappy. We forgot that things take time. We forgot how to work for something because we expect everything to just be given to us. Get your lazy ass off of that couch and do something that isn’t bitching about not having what you want. If we don’t reach our goals in a matter of days we tend to lost faith and give up. Stop doing that, have patience and remind yourself that the harder you work for it the more it will pay off.

This is something that we all have in common and it’s called comparing. Not only do we make ourselves miserable by doing it but we can also become extremely depressed because of it. As soon as we see somebody having it better that us we start feeling deprived and get depressed. Stop comparing yourself to others because you’re not them. You don’t live their life. You are an individual and you should build your life by becoming better than the person you were yesterday not by becoming better than somebody else. Powerful people know how to appreciate their success and they don’t have the need to compare it to other to get validation that they are better. Remember that!

And lastly we make ourselves unhappy by not appreciating our mistakes the same way we appreciate our success. Mistakes are the only life lessons because no books can teach us what our mistakes can and we remember nothing like the things we did wrong so it is necessary for you to learn how to process it in a healthy way. If you made a mistake it doesn’t mean you have to sit down and cry about it. You should actually try to find a new approach to a problem, get creative and get more determined to make things work just to prove yourself that you can do it. Mistakes are lessons, not failures.

Hope I inspired at least one person to change something to become happier. Remember that you are your biggest project in life and you should never give up on yourself!

Just stay single.

When someone exits a relationship that was hard to end, there are certain fears when it comes to meeting someone new, putting yourself out there and I get it. We all get it. What actually angers me is people treating other people as if they were experiments. Let me break this down.

If you are not sure whether or not you are ready to meet someone, get into a relationship with time or just get close to someone then don’t try. Don’t give someone the impression you are interested in them, don’t treat them like you like them, don’t give them false hope, don’t lead someone on just to cut them off. It’s not okay. It’s playing games with people’s emotions 101. You can’t treat someone as if they were your boyfriend/girlfriend, expect the benefits that come with relationships, call that person a friend, make them believe that you’re heading towards a relationship and then end everything by using lines such as “I am not ready for a relationship yet”, “I am scared to get close to you”, “This is all going too fast for me”. Just don’t toy with people.

If you are not sure about getting out there, getting close to someone and if you’re still freaked out when you catch some emotions for a person then don’t go too close to them because it means you are not ready. Just stay fucking single. Fear is not an indicator that you should try something – at least not in this situation because there is a possibility that the person involved will catch feelings for you, get comfortable enough to trust you and get extremely hurt in the end. Then, not only do you have a bad perception about relationships but you’ve also damaged someone else’s perception as well. There’s a chance that the person that got hurt will be reluctant to believe someone new, get to know someone, or let them close. You are just creating more damage and honey, karma is a bitch. Just sayin’.

My point here is not that you shouldn’t go out there but you should listen to yourself. If there’s fear, doubt, anxiety – it means you need more time to heal. You need to find the source of the problem and deal with it. Ask a friend for help or someone who’s close to you but just don’t use people to see if you are ready to date or not. Focus on self-care, heal and things will fall into place.

Put your own oxygen mask

In the past few months my life went from comfortable to everything I thought it will never be. In just a few short months I got my Bachelor’s, got into grad school, dropped out, came home after three years of living alone and became a waitress collecting her tuition fee for a private university. That’s a lot to happen in a few months.

Since the day I started to realize I was unhappy about my life, while I was still at my university, I encountered a big problem I used to struggle with as a kid while my abusive father was living with us. My panic attacks were back. It was overwhelming. It was scary. It was also a big, fucking neon sign that said “GET OUT!”.

In these few months I realized the importance of one very simple sentence everyone heard if they were ever on a plane (I was actually never on a plane). The sentence goes: First put your own oxygen mask.

There is so much meaning in this sentence and I guess I, myself, had to go through a bunch of problems, get my panic attacks again to realize I have chosen to take that oxygen mask off and deprive myself of air for so long. I was completely neglecting myself just to make everyone else happy and maintain a certain image about myself because I thought and was taught all my life that I had to do everything to come off as a well put-together person. I was also taught that a university degree is the only road to success, that other peoples’ opinions matter the most etc. I was force fed a lot of bullshit through my life and I am here to tell you to slap that damn oxygen mask on your face.

Stop suffocating yourself and stop making yourself small in order to fit in with some worthless standards our societies and upbringing have made us follow. If you are not happy with yourself, not only are you hurting yourself but you are hurting the people who care about you. When you are in a bad place in your life for a longer period of time you can’t be the person, child, mother, sister, worker, friend, girlfriend, boyfriend that you actually want to be. If you don’t take care of yourself first, you won’t be able to take care of anyone else or make anyone else happy.

Also, if you sacrifice your happiness and wellbeing to make others happy and satisfied with time you will start to resent them and blame them for your own unhappiness. Let me just get this clear. It’s not their damn fault, it’s yours and you need to own up to your mistakes. It was your choice to sacrifice your mental health to make someone else happy. Don’t drown yourself in sorrow now – TAKE ACTION!

Get yourself out of that dark place, find your oxygen mask and put it on. It’s not selfish, it’s necessary. Make yourself the person you want to be so that you could be the person people you care about need. Put yourself first and, I can’t stress this out enough, that is not selfish. Your happiness and mental health are just as important as everyone else’s and it depends on you.

To repeat again (I feel like a parrot): First, put your own oxygen mask!

Let’s be grateful

Lately, with The Poetry Bar and all, I’ve been all about communicating more with you, being more interactive so I came up with another little project for us.

2018 is coming to an end in just a few days. For me it has been a very long year filled with all types of excitement and change, but it was also filled with defeats and pain. I’ve learned a lot this year, met some great people, made some steps forward and I believe that I became stronger when it comes to chasing my own happiness.

What I want you to do now is to reflect on your experiences this year and write in the comments what events, feeling, people etc. are you grateful for this year. Write from 1 to 5 things. Even more if you want! All of your lovely comments will be published in a little gratitude post on my blog and make sure to place links to your blogs in the comments as well.

I believe that gratitude is a feeling we should all nourish because it helps us see the world through different eyes and to progress in life. Gratitude makes us aware of all the gifts we have and makes us feel more present in the world. I think this post will be very beneficial for everyone who writes and reads it.

I can’t wait to read all of your comments. Also, The Poetry Bar is still very much active so make sure to keep sending in your works there. All of the necessary info you can get by clicking here.

Love you all so much!

P.S. All of you are on my list of gratefulness.

Dealing with trauma flashbacks

Certain smells, spaces, situations or people tend to bring up bad feelings we thought we had forgotten about. Most people who went through abuse deal with this problem on the regular basis especially if they just left the toxic relationship or moved away from the abusive parent who left them with a serious trauma.

These bad feelings and flashback can manifest in different ways. Some of the ones I experienced myself are running out of air, losing my touch with reality, feeling like I can’t move, paralyzing shivers up and down my spine, excessive sweating, stuttering etc. One of the worse things I still deal with are my nightmares that happen on a regular basis. The problem with these flashbacks isn’t only that they make you live through your pain again but they can put you in serious danger. If you are in a situation where you could get hurt but your mind has a flashback and paralyzes your body you are in an even bigger danger because you can’t defend yourself.

In my 22 years of life I have been abused physically for roughly eleven years but the psychological abuse continued despite my father not being around because my mind was still trapped and going over everything I experienced as a child. I learned to control it a little bit but there are still certain triggers that give me flashbacks. Some of them are being in the presence of a man who reeks of alcohol, someone putting their hands near my throat…

With time I started to use my breathing to cope with these flashbacks and to calm myself when I wake up from a nightmare. Whenever we get agitated our breathing changes, so in order to ease your mind you need to get back to your normal breathing pattern. Try to even out your inhales and your exhales. Breathe in for 3 second and breathe out for three seconds. It’s that simple and it helps you center your mind. You just need to focus on your breath, on the sensation of air entering and exiting your body. As soon as you get your inhales and exhales evened out you will notice a slight release in your body. Your muscles will get relaxed, your mind will get clear and that pressure on your chest will slowly fade away.

This isn’t something you can accomplish perfectly in one take. It took me years of even reminding myself to breathe when I start having flashbacks and panicking. The other thing that helps a lot is meditation. I think it isn’t even necessary to state all the positive sides of mediation because you already know most of them.

When you get flashback and feel paralyzed, you have the feeling like the abuser is still controlling you. He or she is not doing it, you mind is! You need to become aware of the power your mind has over you and you need to develop techniques to calm it down and to rise above what your mind tells your body to feel.

Remember: Transform pain into strength and you will be invincible.

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Starve that bastard

Every single person in this world has an ego. It’s a part of all of us. I perceive it as an animal. When you have a small ego it means you have a small animal which doesn’t have to be fed a lot. In this state you have a lot of space inside your life to do what you love, have understanding and respect for other people and you are capable of being happy for other people. This is a beautiful state to be in. Having this small animal to feed isn’t time consuming and exhausting. It’s like a small puppy.

When your ego is big it means you have a big animal and that is a problem. People who find themselves in this state have a very large animal they have to feed. Their life revolves around keeping their animal fed and giving it even more food so that it would be satisfied. This state is time consuming and exhausting, even though people who find themselves living this life constantly lie they are okay and that their life is just perfect. People like this do not respect anyone, including themselves and the person they hate most is themselves. I know that everyone says that people with a big ego love themselves more than anything but when you look at it better that’s not true. A person that loves himself doesn’t allow his ego to grow into a wild beast that manipulates their life.

These types of people can’t feel true happiness for their friends, loved ones or other people because being happy for other people would mean that other people have something good in their lives which would consequently make the people with the wild beast ego feel unhappy because potentially they don’t have that something good or that something good will make what they have look small and insignificant. Often these people go to great lengths to humiliate other people, put them down, criticize everyone just to feed their own ego and hide their own insecurities and let me tell you something – this is no way to live. I know it because I used to have a big ego.

I’ve heard the term “Burst that bubble and put your feet on the ground”. First of all, a big ego is not a bubble. It’s a high security prison guarded by that wild beast we need to feed so that it wouldn’t harm us. If it were a bubble then all you would need to burst it would be a needle. In reality, you need a whip to control the animal, you need to starve that bastard and you need a hammer to break down the wall and escape. It’s so hard but the end goal is so beautiful. The end goal is that small puppy you don’t need to feed a lot and who doesn’t like puppies?

There is so much bliss in making your ego small, in learning how to love yourself for who you are and gaining respect for other people. Putting others down won’t make you fly higher but recognizing that we are all equals will make your wings wide enough to hug the whole world.

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