A clean slate each day to discover your personality traits, doesn’t that sound wonderful?

© Mantova Outlet Village (photo)

As a 90’s kid I grew up watching and loving As Told by Ginger. Obviously at that age you don’t think things through and it was nothing but a fun cartoon with cool storyline. Being a grown up and re-watching all the episodes brings back a lot of good childhood memories. On the other hand, it helps me love the cartoon series with more depth than I ever imagined possible. Yes, I am a grownup. YES, I still watch As Told by Ginger. It is my unicorn island.

  In a certain episode ( Stuff ‘ll kill ya, Season 3, episode 51) the main character Ginger has started high school and feels burdened with the high expectations of school teachers. While trying to step up her game and perform better, her situation is reversed, resulting in poorer performance. The same goes for her brother Carl, who has a “bad boy” reputation. While entering elementary school, Carl wants to turn the pages and become a “good boy” in his sister’s footstep. But his former principle has already gone around distributing Carl’s “File of wrongdoings.” Thus, before Carl is fully settled in the elementary school environment, he is branded as a “bad boy”. His first impression is stolen from him. All his new teachers are prejudiced. He has no clean slate.

Ginger, being a smart and sensitive girl, wonders: “I can’t help wondering if Zorsky somehow expecting the worst of me actually brought out the worst of me. And if same could be true of Carl and his behaviour over the years, is it possible for one to succeed when absolutely everyone expects you to fail? And that said, are the Foutley kids victim of the system? Or just total goofballs?

Recently I also read I Know Why the Caged Bird Sings by Maya Angelou.
“There were no favourite students. No teacher’s pets. If a student pleased her during a particular period, he could not count on special treatment in the next day’s class, and that was as true the other way around. Each day she faced us with a clean slate and acted as if ours were clean as well. Reserved and firm in her opinions, she spent no time in indulging the frivolous.” P. 231

The quotes above are the opposites of each other.

 In the first, your first impression is shadowed by your (former) reputation.
In the second, you have no reputation since each time your reputation is erased.

Each day is a new beginning without expectations. A new day to prove yourself.  To become a better version of yourself. Could this mean that reputation kills you from reaching your potential? The word “reputation” is often used with a negative connotation. While “image” is more neutral if not positive. But at the end “reputation” = “image” = “personality”. And throughout the days, months & years, our image is created. Fixed. We are such and certain person in society. People assume you to react in a certain way to things or behave in a certain way.

People expecting you to behave in a certain way, might lead you to behaving in a certain way… You are even made to play the part, to quote Taylor Swift. 
A heavy burden of expectations can be the consequence sometimes.
But where is the fun in that? Being the same dull person each day anew…
Isn’t it nicer to explore our personality traits and fully be?

Isn’t it way better to be Maya Angelou’s former teacher and wipe the slate each day. A brand-new start, not only for yourself but for each person you encounter.

No expectations.
No judgements.
Life would be so much easier.  
But then comes the question of reliability. How is “someone who is constantly changing” reliable? At a certain moment you just wouldn’t know what to expect of that person right? But that’s the point. Maybe don’t expect this or that. Maybe their change is just their growth.  

Yes, I am being an idealist. Yet here I lay wondering how to reach that state of being able to give each person his own clean state. May be by giving myself a clean state each day to “be”?


To achieve something, you need to get uncomfortable

There I was cycling up that hill in Ireland. Sweating as hell and wanting to give up. Just as I had given up multiple times yesterday and the day before.
But the words of the famous Youtuber Superwoman were drumming in my ears in a sound beat. “Get uncomfortable.” So were the words of Mary, a friend, “You really need to reach the point of feeling uncomfortable while going to the gym for it to work.”

Basically what they were both trying to say is that in order to reach the next level, you need to battle that dragon without hesitation and kill it in order to reach the next level. Even if you are sweating fear that you might get killed in a seconde. You need to get out of your comfort zone. You need to feel uncomfortable. And foremost you need to keep pushing yourself to unlock the next level. With that thought in the back of my mind I pushed myself to the top of that hill. I felt my face turn red, sweat all over the place, tears of frustration about to explode. I felt like crying and giving up.  Yet I kept yelling at myself inside my head “not to give up”. I was screaming things like “don’t be a pussy” & “keep paddling”. And I kept going. I kept paddling with all the energy I could gather without bursting into tears. And I also reached that hilltop. I reached my next level of determination. I reached my next leven of perseverance. So this is what being uncomfortable is really about. Unlocking levels. Climbing the ladder.

I felt so glad and proud of myself on that hilltop. When the next hilltop was in sight, I smiled because I felt that I could handle this too. This is do-able I thought. And I did. I rode uphill again & again & again. I believed that I was capable of riding up hills without stopping every other minute to rest and catch breath. A new comfort zone, that is were being uncomfortable got me. A brand new physical border.

This experience made me a believer of the “Get uncomfortable”-quote. In order to achieve something you need to get uncomfortable. Of course this might not be applicable to all situations, but you decide that for yourself.
Sometimes we are so happy in our bubble called “Comfort Zone” that we stop growing as a person, even when we are unhappy the way we are right now. So, I give this advice too: “Get uncomfortable”. Maybe it would even be better to say:

Get comfortable being uncomfortable.

Why kill curiosity at its birth while you can create a bridge?

How often did you wonder about something? A question that just popped up in your head… An answer you clearly didn’t know. But you wondered. And sometimes you kept on wondering. I know I do. Being a very average person, I too am prone to procrastination and furthermore to forgetting. So, in a way I had an abortion. I killed the curiosity in me at its birth. I sometimes even nipped it in the bud by giving it little to no genuine attention.

Of course sometimes you search it up and you know. But for me that’s not often the case, most of the time I simply forget. Recently I had been wondering how ballons were made and I still don’t know the answer to it. 

It’s about time I went looking for the answers to my questions. How else will I know, right? How else will I create the bridge to “the wiser me” ? 

You are the average of 5 people you spend the most time with.

I had heard this saying before. Now I have started to believe it. The past few days I have been wwoofing in Ireland with this wonderful family and I do feel inspired. 

Wwoofing is a concept of going on a farm or somewhere else where you go help out certain hours per day in exchange of free accommodation. For students like me this is a great way to travel on a low (er) budget. But not only that, wwoofing is a wonderful way to really get to know the locals, their history, daily lives, culture & tradition. And now I have come to realization that this is what travel is going to be about for me. Not only visiting nice places but really trying to get the essence of the place through interactions with the locals.

 I had wanted to wwoof for a few years now. But it had stayed “a dream”, somehow unreachable. So, one day I just took a leap of faith and booked a return ticket (Brussels – Dublin) with twee weeks inbetween. This without having found a host. Right now I am so glad I booked the flight. Having already spent around 90 euros did force me to contact as many host as I could. And wonder above wonder I found a host.  Perhaps if I hadn’t booked that flight, I might have brushed the lack of interested host off as me being late to send all those emails. And I might have said maybe next year… But when we put off things for later, how big are the chances of them getting fulfilled right? So in a way I bet my 90 euros on those plane tickets. And aren’t I glad I did. 

County Waterford, Ireland. That’s where I am. My first wwoofing experience but also my first solo travel ever. And I am learning new things everyday. About plants, bees, Irish history, gender salary gap… 

In the past few days I was in company of people who read history books, who preferred reading history of China. People who were really aware of the things that had happened or things that are happening right now in the world. Of the art around the world. The lifestyle of some other cultures. I got asked tons of questions too. About Brussels, its inhabitants and its government. And although I do know certain things, some questions I just couldn’t answer. I felt stupid in a way while at loss of words. I wondered how come  I didn’t know this or that. I felt like looking up all those unanswered questions later in the evening, so next time I would know. Not only that but all those conversation also made me curious about the Chinese history or the beehives or the Irish famine and immigration. I wanted to read. I wanted to know. While meeting people who love to read informative books and not only fiction, made me realize the importance of daily reading! With this gained knowledge in mind I do hope to open more books, more often.

So in a way: yes! You could definitely be the average of the 5 people you spend the most time with. I wonder who my 5 people are. Do you know your 5 people? 

Chunks of soul left behind

Revisiting places evokes old faded memories in me. Some are bittersweet, others best left forgotten. Some I had totally forgotten about only to realize that they aren’t forgotten at all. May be we just tend to put some memories in a box until we reopen it one day.

No matter what, memories they remain. A present that might still exist somewhere in some dimension. But long gone and ungraspable in this reality. How things were and how they no longer are the same. 

This reality evermore points out how everything is and remains momentary. And time lapse becomes a fact. A truth. 

It makes me realize the importance of now.  And to live it to the fullest! Makes me appreciate every second, every minute. Because eventually I am merely a book and every single day of my life a page turned over. 

During my travel I left a chunk of my soul behind. But I also left a little richer with a crate full of priceless memories and lessons learned. 

So until we are reunited with those specific chunks of our souls left behind, let the adventures of our lives continue. Let’s keep shedding chunks of our souls and gaining new precious memories. Xx 

Catharsis: real or figment of our own imagination?

©Defective Barbie, The Drip Effect 

We all have things we had to let go. Let it lose. Let it fly. Let it spread its wings.


Sometimes it’s easy to let go. Sometimes it’s hard.

But most of the times: we crave catharsis.

Definition according to Oxford dictionary. 

Catharsis = “The process of releasing, and thereby providing relief from, strong or repressed emotions.”

There you have it… 

Our proper needed closure.
In order for us to be “okay” once more we need closure. We need to release. We need to let go. We need to let it fly.
But what does closure look like? I guess nobody has an answer to that.
And also, my definition of closure might be totally different from you definition of closure.
In that case when do we reach closure?
Does it only matter to us individually?
When we go through rough time with a certain person, very often pain overtakes and we tend to think ONLY of ourself, we loose vision of the other individual, of their pain.
Here only our own catharsis matters. We care less about other individual’s healing process.  But what about the other individual’s catharsis? Aren’t we responsible for their catharsis as well? (Especially if the painful history involved both of you.)
And I am using the word responsible because you are definitely going to be the person who can ensue some catharsis… whether it be by talking things over and over again or something else. 

And what about the times when you thought you had achieved that catharsis and a few days/ weeks later you are back to zero… Catharsis gone. 

What if catharsis is nothing more but a figment of our imagination… 

Created our of fear for karma or morality…

Maybe we can never fully reach that point of catharsis. We only grasp its shadows and believe it to be real.

“Must’s” imposed by society, Darwin, Freud

©Anatomy Art By MimiPrints

must become strong
a better person
have a diploma
find a job
divergent= deviation
9-5 job, get a job
study hard to get a job
money to survive
money to thrive

Yet there are so many people in our world.
Yet there are so many worlds within our world.
So many worlds that our world seems too small for all those infinite worlds within.

It sometimes feels like Darwin’s evolution theory. Survival of the fittest in a way.

In the past & the present (and in the future) Darwin’s theory has been (will be) interpreted in so many ways and here  I am, interpreting it once again with my own thoughts.
Where does this urge to become a better version of myself come from?
But then we could start with Freudian “me, myself & I” if we start talking about “me” as an entity.

It is true that we are attracted to people with whom we are supposed to have genetically better adapted children.
So isn’t that survival of the fittest?
So is this urge also a way of trying to survive this new era?

Is it our genetics that is trying to overcome the natural selection?Of is it something more psychological and individual? Is it perhaps me trying to find I ?

If we are genetically encoded to enhance ourself, is procrastination and other defaults human flaw?

OR maybe sometimes, just sometimes we are better off walking our own unbeaten path.