Learning to Love You

smile on the outside

I’m totally new at this and I’m not going to try to be something I’m not. Instead I’m going to put myself out there and hope to inspire you to do amazing things for yourself. Although I’ve always tried to put myself out there I’ve also always held back.. and only those closest to me know why.

I have struggled with merely liking myself my entire life — it is my problem and my vice. I know that it’s important for me to get this under control, to find love for myself in order to improve my quality of life, succeed at the goals I work towards and continue to be inspired — but how?

Well it IS hard, but once you begin on the road to self-love you will notice your life and appreciation for life looking brighter and brighter. You get what you put out in a sense, so start focusing on positive things and treating others as you would like to be treated. You’ll see a change. It’s always hard at first — anxiety, change, fear — it’s scary. You’ll begin to notice that when you force yourself to do the things you used avoid they become easier to do.

In my quest for self-improvement I have come across the most wonderful, inspirational girl, website and podcast. Her name is Gala Darling and she has a blog devoted to crowning your beautiful life and an amazing self-improvement podcast.

“You cannot be lonely if you like the person you are alone with.”
– Wayne Dyer

Does comparing yourself to others create negative feelings which cause you to feel bad about yourself? This happens to everyone, everyone is improving themselves in someway. Comparison is the all purpose killer, everyone is absolutely different in every way and has their own story, life, dna, experiences, etc. This is your only life, make it worth your while and don’t let others, who may not even really know you, define you.

You have to reprogram your thinking and start to take notice of the things you enjoy about yourself and about life. Sure everyone has something about them that may cause you to clash with others, but what things attract others to you? What things are important to the person that you are? If you feel you are working towards bettering yourself and achieving your goals you will feel more satisfied and confident.

Remember you cannot change the way that people treat you, if they like you or even if they want to give you the time of day. You have to show them why they should give you the time of day and if they respond negatively, change the way you react to it. You cannot change anyone or make everyone like you so someday you’re going to have to reprogram the way criticism makes you feel.

Making a Change

Don’t worry. Worrying changes nothing.
Make a list of and focus on your good qualities and attributes; don’t focus on negative ones.
Be kind to others, see yourself in them.
Find your passion and set achievable goals daily.
Choose a role model; their good qualities can inspire you to be a better person.
Accept compliments.
Know that you are a valuable person. Your time is valuable.
Take care of yourself.
Celebrate your differences.
Smile.
Make eye contact with others when interacting.
Act confident even if you aren’t, if you don’t feel it now you’ll start to.
Consider adopting a cat for responsibility, a routine, comfort and unconditional love.
Take action.

“Many people appreciate the power of positive thinking. But we believe that positive thinking alone is of limited value. Simply repeating positive affirmations such as “I am a wonderful person with much to offer the world” will NOT change your life unless you actively DO something to reinforce that you ARE a wonderful person with much to offer the world!” , Self-Esteem for Women.

“I have an everyday religion that works for me. Love yourself first, and everything else falls into line.”
– Lucille Ball

.. and remember, if we’re new at this we need to take it one day at a time.

“Keep looking at the bright-side and someday you’ll see yourself there.”
– Benjamin Amick aka Mistereducated

Resources

How to Love Yourself in 17 Ways

Got Friends?

Finding a handful of friends is, in many cases, no easy task; especially given the cultural fad of vapid, disposable, let’s-do-lunch, I-love-you-after-five-minutes, overweening, entitled, texting, emotionally handicapped, walking wounded human beings most of us act like. And that’s before you even get to hello. Finding your peeps, as they say, isn’t as easy as it seems but, like all good things, is definitely worth the work!

My mother told me I was lucky if I could count all my real friends on one hand!

Must have been fifteen or so years ago now, when it occurred to me after a string of disappointing intimate relationships that maybe she was right—again. That it might be wise to invest more time in creating some deep and lasting friendships, as they theoretically seemed to have greater staying power and could be in many ways equally fulfilling, perhaps in some ways even more.

I must add that, up until that that point, my history with friendships was rather sketchy and my role models even more so. My mother barely trusted women (her best friend slept with my dad) and my father, well, made a lot of offers people couldn’t refuse. Childhood aside, the relationship skills I had gathered afforded me as many pleasant and happy memories as traumatic or forgettable ones. Over the years, many of the friendships had been more fragile than I liked, and oftentimes out of balance one way or the other. Either I was too needy or too unavailable, or our lifestyles were not totally compatible—being a single mom certainly didn’t help. Yet, the ones I did maintain (for whatever length of time) offered a mutual comfort that, when absent, left me yearning for that very specific kind of connection that only a platonic camaraderie offers—one that, no matter how compatible, a sexual relationship does not.

Finding this handful of friends is, in many cases, no easy task; especially given the cultural fad of vapid, disposable, let’s-do-lunch, I-love-you-after-five-minutes, overweening, entitled, texting, emotionally handicapped, walking wounded human beings most of us act like. And that’s before you even get to hello. Finding your peeps, as they say, isn’t as easy as it seems but, like all good things, is definitely worth the work!

So, how do you tell if someone is got the right stuff to be your new BFF or just a GF? I figure that most of our same propensities arise when it comes to friendship as they do in an intimate relationship—except, of course, Le sexe. It’s safe to say that we are looking for many of the same things in a friendship that we are looking for in a relationship. With a few exceptions:

1. Someone to hang out with (you actually like)
2. Someone you have something in common with (aside from Le sexe)
3. Someone who will listen to your incessant or inane whining should it arise, however untimely
4. Someone who will show a genuine interest in you and your life, however ordinary or dull
5. Someone who has a high tolerance for your weaknesses
6. Someone who will have your back if ever need be
7. Someone you can count on (from OMG I have nothing to wear to my high school reunion, to OMG I have breast cancer and need someone to hold my hand during chemo)
8. Someone who will tell me the truth even if I don’t want to hear it (with compassion when needed)
9. Who doesn’t care if I am 10 pounds overweight (fill in the blank)
10. And still love me if I decide to shave my head, take up drumming and move to India for a year

Finding these select few, these magical, unconditionally (most of the time) loving phenoms can take some sussing out. Once you have decided that you want some great ones—who, if you’re lucky, just may be around throughout your lifetime—here are a few things to keep in mind. They just might make your journey a little easier done than said!

1. Set your intention—it works with friends too. Maybe you want to make two or three new good friends in the next year. Set achievable goals.
2. Set forth your criteria. What do you want? I wanted girlfriends who were self-sustaining, had a daily practice of self-care, who were on a similar spiritual track, and who had impeccable communication skills, etc.
3. List your non-negotiables, the things that just won’t work for you. One of mine was, “If you are upset you need to tell me directly and not make unilateral decisions that affect me as well.”
4. Interview well, ask good questions and wait and see if their actions match their words.
5. Don’t settle (even if you’re bored or desperate, you’ll be sorry you did!).
6. Tell the truth, even when it’s uncomfortable, better now than later, I always say.
7. Set your boundaries regarding money, men, and all things sacred!
8. Give as much as you get and make sure it flows the other way too!
9. Take your time, no need to rush, getting to know a new friend is fun and should be savored, and trust is built over time
10. Most of all, be silly, be yourself, and have some fun!

And remember, great relationships, including friendships, begin within!

How To Best Approach a Relationship

Here’s the deal. Most of us approach relationships like drunken sailors, intoxicated with the ideas and fantasies we have about relationships as opposed to the sobering reality of them, and desperate (or lonely, as the case may be) like your ship has just come in—or is about to leave port. Not a great strategy if you want a great relationship.

So, get a piece of paper and write these things down:

1. First, what do you want? (spell it out)
2. What are you willing to do about it?

I know, I have said this before, but let’s take a closer look—trust me. Let’s start with number 1: What do you want? On your paper, across from each item you have listed in your want column, write down what you have instead. For example:

I WANT

An ideal partner, someone to share my life with
A big house with 3 kids, a dog and live near the water
To be debt-free and have 1 million dollars in the bank

I HAVE

I am single and live alone
I live in the city, small flat w/a fish
I am in between careers and in debt

Whatever the case is, write it down. The space in between what you have and what you want, let’s call your motivational crevasse. For some this may seem gaping, for others totally achievable. Which brings us to number 2: What are you willing to do about it?

On the back of that paper, write down what time you woke up today and what you did, go ahead, write it. Include when you got up, who you spent time with, what books you read, TV you watched, when you went to work, and so on. And be as specific as you can! Then I want you to get another piece of paper, draw a monthly calendar, and mark the days that are pretty much like this day. Go on.

If you’re like most of us, we do about the same thing pretty much each day, consistently, whatever those things are; hang out with certain people, go to particular places, participate in certain activities, watch TV, go on our computers, etc. We have routines and patterns. We are creatures of habit.

We also know that it takes a certain amount of discipline and practice to bring a thought or idea into fruition, or “make them real,” as they say. For example, we get our diploma by going to school, studying, showing up and doing what it takes to make that happen. Same applies for our dream relationship, our dream life.

Now for the math equation: Take what you want, add what you do all day, and see if it equals what you have!

I know, this seems harsh, well…what can I say, it is. When we want something bad enough, we do what it takes to make it happen, rather than sitting around believing in fairy tales, hoping “the one” will just show up and we’ll live happily ever after. Odds are this is never going to happen, and the facts are in, ladies and gentlemen; it almost never does. Why wait? Go make it happen yourself. The good news is, since what you do begets what you have, try something different! Instead of watching TV, take a relationship class; or instead of hours of doing things that aren’t getting you what you want, start doing things that will bring you closer to creating what you do want! Next thing you know, you will want what you have… which, Buddha says, is the definition of happiness.

The Need in Speed

frog prince

Here’s the deal; the facts are in. At least 50% of marriages don’t make it—which, if you’re a gambler, is slightly better than a crap shoot – this is what I told RadarOnline, when asked for a comment about Khloe Kardashian and Lamar Odom’s marriage.

And it would seem obvious to many people that marrying someone you have only known a few weeks would increase your odds of failure…among other things. So perhaps a better question to ask is not what are the downsides, but rather…why? Why get married? So you can have a party? Show up your sister on TV because you are profoundly insecure or desperate for ratings? What’s the rush? It’s not like love has a shelf life. Unless one is deeply religious, which is not evident in this case (correct me if I am wrong; I don’t think so), there are so few reasons to rush into nuptials before we have taken time to do a minimum of due diligence.

What I do know about these two people is they know something about success. It takes discipline, skill and focus (and perhaps a little luck) to turn your desire into reality. Hence my concern, again, about their haste. I am not convinced that these two people understand the game they are in. I feel whatever their motivations for wedlock—“looks good, feels good,” ratings, or whatever—they would benefit by focusing on the fact that the same commitment, discipline and skill that supported their success is needed to enjoy a successful relationship; particularly a healthy, fulfilling, sustainable one.

With all due respect, if these two people love each other, or feel a strong connection and want to jump into marriage (which I likened to jumping out of a plane, considering, well…that they have just barely met), they should strap on a parachute. Which is to say, they should strongly consider checking under the hood to make sure they have what it takes to make the journey before Sunday. Many things are very difficult, if not nearly impossible, to re-negotiate after they say “I do.”

While celebrity marriages may seem qualitatively different than the average boy-meets-girl scenario, all relationships thrive best when they rest on a solid foundation. In some ways, the celebrity relationship needs to pay even greater mind to this, as their relationship is subject to stresses, pressure and scrutiny that on a good day most of us cannot even fathom.

So I would say to this couple, go for it! IF they have managed in this three-week period to establish the following, at minimum:

Their top three non-negotiables.

If this person is worthy of their unconditional devotion and respect.

A strong “out” clause or good consciousness agreement.

If they themselves are a strong, loyal, devoted, trustworthy partner.

They have revealed all their deep secrets or habits that have the potential to destroy the relationship if not revealed and healed.

They have cleaned up all their past relationships.

Have the capacity to tell the truth despite the consequences, and see the value of truth as a cornerstone of their relationship.

Love each other’s friends and current daily lifestyle.

Have agreed upon children and child-rearing responsibilities.

Understand and are in alignment about money.

They are confident in each other’s ability to negotiate their feelings and concerns responsibly.

Know what each other values most in life.

Have shared and are in alignment and support of their 10-year plan.

Have agreed to see someone (either within the family or outside) to act as an unbiased counselor, to help support the relationship should they get stuck or feel they cannot resolve any matter that has the potential to end the relationship.

This, I believe, would afford them a good start. While relationships are a great breeding ground for personal development, chemistry as a litmus test for the potential of a relationship is too often a crash-and-burn method & can be quite painful. Rather than each failed relationship being a lesson learned, the pain becomes either fuel for the next one or a barrier to intimacy.

In our 20s we are at a peak in some ways, in terms of learning about who we are and who we are not, and oftentimes get into relationships based largely on chemistry—without having acquired some essential relationship tools and turned them into skills. Life will teach them soon enough. The good news is, if they really want a healthy relationship they are in a position to develop these skills, provided they have interviewed each other and revealed their shadows and non-negotiables to each other. Some of these deal-breakers, like infidelity or drug or alcohol addiction, are things that you want to know before you get married, not after!

Hard to establish trust when you have had so little time to see if the person’s words and actions match up. If you are in a rush, and clearly Khloe and Lamar seem to be, I’d advise them to take some time before Sunday to drop in with each other, because having a success plan is important! Bottom line, at least half of marriages end in divorce. If you want it to work, make sure you are prepared and have what it takes to make that happen.

To Re-cap

Hard to negotiate your needs after the marriage ceremony; double check your non-negotiables, you two!
What do you want and expect from each other & the marriage: do you both want kids, how will you share your money, or not? I call this a consciousness agreement.
What kind of relationship skills do you bring to the table? Do you have issues with commitment and intimacy, do you have a track record of being able to stay and hang in there when things get tough? “Looks good, feels good” isn’t going to cut it when things get sideways…these things are very difficult to negotiate after you already have established a pattern. Talk about it. What are you committing to?
Happily Ever After is not a place, and chemistry is not enough to keep a relationship together. They say that, in unconsciousness, the thing that brings you together in a relationship will be the thing that pulls you apart. What is your foundation for your relationship? I recommend spirit, God or the divine, and having a real practice.
Love is a choice and a privilege, not a sentence, so act like it!

I recently explained my take on the Khloe/Lamar situation at a book signing. You can watch it here.

Develop Great Mate-dar!

You’re single and want to meet that someone special NOW! Especially since we are on the cusp of the holidays, right? So naturally your Mate-dar (your ability to suss out a great mate) is turned up a notch. Or so you think. Truth is, Mate-dar is only as good as its end user.

So, whatever the reason, you’re on the prowl for a significant other. Maybe you feel you’re ready for a commitment. Maybe you’re looking for companionship. So you feel like your “Mate-dar” (your ability to suss out a great mate) is in full force, turned up top notch. But the truth is – even if you have the purest of intentions for seeking out a relationship – nobody’s Mate-dar is perfect.
The problem—or, should I say, one of the many challenges— with being human is knowing the difference between who we are and who we are not. Making the all-important distinction between our unconscious persona and our authentic, healthy, whole selves. Until we have addressed this process it is likely that our wounded little kid has a hold of an adult tool, waving it around like a toy, and then BANG! somebody gets hurt. Our Mate-dar, when operated by our 5-year-old wound, can get us into a lot of trouble—as would any part of ourselves we have not made peace with, healed or become aware of on some level.

In the case of seeking a great partner, when we are seeing through the eyes of a wound we are less likely to see clearly! This can show up in different ways (boy, can they be tricky, slippery and subtle all at once), most of them falling under the guise of denial or rationalization.

Here’s a great story to illustrate how elusive accessing our very own truth can be.
My husband, David, got on the scale this morning. I could hear the clang and distinct argh. “How can that be? I gained four pounds? I have only been eating lettuce all week, for crying out loud.” I tried to comfort him by saying that muscle weighs more than fat, and then burst out laughing, realizing that’s what I told myself last time I got on the scale. After we lavished one and another with a few more excuses, we decided that the scale was broken and we needed to get a new one. One that told us what we wanted to hear! That we were not fat!

I have learned it’s one thing to sit around and bitch and moan wishing things were different, and another to do something about it. So I went for a run, then later we went to get the scale. Apparently doing a little of both.

pretty in pink

“It’s never a good idea to weigh yourself late in the day, sweetie” I reminded him as he stepped off the fancy glass scale in Bed Bath and Beyond, that seconds before had held such promise. “Yeah, but this one says I weigh even more than the one at home—did I gain four more pounds since we left?” I wasn’t laughing, as I was about to climb on. Mind you, I don’t make it a habit to get on scales—I know all too well they are not my friends, because I almost never feel better about myself as a result! How bad could it be? I thought. I run and eat well and anyway I would know if I… “What the…? A hundred and…? Wow, I don’t know what to say, except …that scale can’t be right!” I leapt off like it was a bed of hot coals.

“Oh, look, here’s one that tells you how much muscle versus fat you have, and it will show us how much water we are retaining! Let’s try it. You go first!” I said. David placed the Ferrari version of a scale on the floor, took his flip-flops off again and stepped on. “Uh oh…uhhhh… Wait, try that one, that’s just a regular old scale,” and quickly pointed to another. He put the Ferrari one back, put the next one on the floor and hopped on. We both waited as it calculated. “Well, this one says the same thing as the one at home does,” he shrugged. ‘Which means—uh…we’re fat, right?” We both laughed, let it sink in for a minute, and then decided that since we were ready to admit the truth, that we weighed more than we wanted to, we might as well buy the really cool one that told us in great detail all about it.

What the heck does this have to do with relationships? That’s a very good question, and if you answered “Everything!” you are definitely smarter than the average bear!

Pay attention, ‘cause this is some heavy. It doesn’t get any more real than this kind of reality. A huge contributor, if not a top ten reason so many of us don’t have a GREAT relationship, is—we don’t tell ourselves (or others) the truth. It’s an exact proportion, as a matter of fact! Think about it. Let’s say I asked you right now to write down your name, how much you weigh, how much you make a year, the color of your eyes, hair, your shoe size, how tall you are, where you live. Nine out of ten of you would lie about at least half. The rest of you would at least exaggerate or minimize. Don’t believe me, go grab the next person you see and tell them how much you really weigh. How tall you are, to the centimeter. What color your hair really is. How old you actually are. Go down the list; if you are honest with yourself, you will see how often we lie about the most mundane things. Why? Because of what we make it mean:

I weigh X = I am fat = no one will want/love me
I am X years old = I am too old = no one will love me
I am five feet X = too short (or tall) = no one wants that = no one will want me
My real hair color is X = I am unattractive = no one will love me
I make X amount of money = I am poor = no one will want to be with me/love me

So we do what my husband and I tried to do. We slip right into the old river called Denial. We begin with some simple rationalizations, adding or taking away a zero here and there. What harm can it do? we think, Who cares? If I don’t care, why should anyone else? Well, that’s the problem. You do care, or you wouldn’t bother lying—especially to yourself!

You can see how easy it is to miss cues, red flags and warnings or signs from another person that they really aren’t interested. Our agenda for love can be so strong, our wound-ology so ingrained, that it actually distorts reality! Here are some recommendations to help develop or adjust our Mate-dar.

One of my favorites is to interview people who have the kind of relationship you want. If you can’t interview, at least pay attention and jot down some features that stand out for you!

Date yourself seriously. Yes, seriously…date yourself. Make a date, get ready for it, pick the place you want yourself to take yourself, the whole nine, and do it. How do you like your own company, what do you notice about yourself?
Interview yourself. Yeah, why not? Who are you? What do you want out of life? What’s your five-year plan, what is your relationship history? Ask yourself all the questions you would ask of another, and see how you react or what comes up for you.

Have a few practice dates with real people to see how well your intuition is working. Yes, a date where you actually try and work on your weakness. Maybe you even ask the person for feedback about you and see how your perceptions compare. Could be very enlightening, if you have the courage!

Look, if you don’t take care to do these things, or things like this, for yourself, why would you expect anyone else to? Awakening to consciousness is not for lightweights—it’s hard work, and you got want the good stuff! Like I always say, great relationships begin within. Don’t kid yourself!

Minimalism vs Hoarding and Decadent Interior

If I could just… if this was.. it still doesn’t *feel* right!

I’m often finding myself stuck when designing new layouts for Miseducated — it started so collage heavy as I was using tons and tons of popular icons.. then I started seeing the collage thing EVERYWHERE and it was feeling cluttered so I obviously cut it down… :p I always feel that deconstructing and ridding of any excess is a positive thing.

Now why is this?

My room was very cluttered as a child and I hoped for a day when I would have my own modern, minimalist house.

As you can see my minimalism kind of lost the battle with whimsical nonsense and fantasy candylands. Obviously I find my *greatest* satisfaction in cuteness, well-designed, minimal yet colorful homes (Jeu de Paumes went RIGHT UP my alley, didn’t they yours? ^_~).

.. but is deleting and deconstructing making it better really? Is it just my fucked up sense of things?

I *know* hoarding isn’t healthy, it’s very hard to overcome like any addiction… so does that mean that minimalism is the goal? We simply *must* know! I’m very familiar with hoarding regarding my own life and have studied it extensively in my obsession with psychology and helping myself and those around me.

(… and while we’re at it, why do you *insist* on using asterisks *everywhere*?!

Because I often despise italics, use bold for other things and have a strange need to use the only flower on my keyboard over and over and over! As well as inserting random thoughts that have no relevance to the subject at hand –if anything this NEGATES minimalism–because of course, I am a crazy rambler. With all positives come negatives. ^_~)

Hoarding

Hoarding is the excessive collection of items, along with the inability to discard them.
Hoarding, also called compulsive hoarding and compulsive hoarding syndrome, can be a symptom of obsessive-compulsive disorder (OCD).
People who hoard often don’t see it as a problem, making treatment challenging.
Mayo Clinic

Minimalism

A twentieth century art movement and style stressing the idea of reducing a work of art to the minimum number of colors, values, shapes, lines and textures. – ArtLex

Funny thing is.. minimalism is many times regarded as ‘rejective art’ and I think of it as ‘perfective’ art — it’s a very tough thing to master correctly — it can be done both very right and very wrong.

A minimal lifestyle… now that’s exactly what I admire. When applying the rules of minimalism to your life and home it helps a lot if you’re moving (I was) or organizing absolutely everything — it’s good to do yearly (*spring*cleaning)!

1. Evaluate your possessions that sit on shelves.
2. Find a place for everything.
3. Enjoy what you have.
Christian PF

Zakka

Another design movement, but in Japan. Generally means improving your environment and seeing beauty in the mundane.

When I see zakka it reminds me almost of a minimalist cuteness and innocence, it is completed with the sweet kitschy illustrations and/or designs that are *just enough* to add color and sweetness into the room. It’s very natural and inspired by country lifestyle.

Which lifestyle do you lean towards? 😉

Gallery

Merci: Landscape Online, Momoy, Christopher Coleman, Elidur, Homepic, SoSuperSam, BKK Home, Zakka Candy

Qualities in a Partner

I heard the most evil thing the other day. My definition of evil is often flexible, lying somewhere in between totally heinous and completely ridiculous. This story falls in there–you decide for yourself.

My gal pal told me she read a book this guy wrote ( If I had one less scruple, I might tell you his name–for now, we’ll call him something friendly, like Penile Supremacist…PS for short. Fine–forget that, let’s just call him Jack. There! Who can argue with that?) So JACK made quite an impression on my not-so-easily-impressionable gal pal recently. She rang me straight away to give me the scoop.

“Maryanne, you’re not going to believe what @#$% says in his book!” She’s known me for 15 years now, knows that in general male/female issues have been in my top 10 list of favorite things to get bunged up about…particularly when they’re coming from downwind, let’s say. Historically, she delivers the message and then runs for cover. As she started recounting “The top10 qualities women are looking for in relationship with men,” my eyes started rolling back in my head. (I get bored easily sometimes.) Here’s all I can remember:love-is

1. Presence

2. Intelligence

3. Sense of humor

However, I perked up a bit when she started on the men’s list, which I remember every detail of, luckily. You have to be so excited–are you? I mean, finally someone is willing to divulge such privileged information–top 10 qualities men are looking for in relationship with YOU! Here they are, in order of importance:

1. Great in the sack

2. Great in the sack

3. Great in the sack

4. Great in the sack

5. Great in the sack…

Sorry.. I know I am going too fast–I do that sometimes–but did you get that so far, ’cause I have 5 to go… but – you already know what the rest of them are. Exactly–great in the sack, great in the sack, great in the sack, great in the sack, great in the sack.

Now then while I am sure JACK has some motivation for telling this story, other than to humiliate men for making them appear as though they have no discretion–which would really be like saying men are stupid (that can’t be true). Perhaps he’s simply lost his way. I must give him credit for the fact that he apparently asked these gentleman to rethink the question, and they did come up with some insightful, significant qualities they are looking for in their relationships with women.

Apparently our friend (who now shall, for his own protection, remain nameless) has not been informed that hormonal litmus testing is medieval, that we live in houses now, we even read and write. (How did he miss that?) We have developed skills beyond pounce and attack. How does someone who is in the position of teaching open, impressionable people get away with spouting ancient stereotypes like he was proud of the “well-known fact” that men often think with their smorgasbords?

The point is–well, one point is: Making love is an art – and it’s not just about the sex. It’s no wonder so many women think being great in the sack is a good investment of their time. How about we all revisit that list, people…take pen and paper and really make a list. Look and see what unconscious ideas you may have about the other sex…’cause when mama ain’t happy, ain’t nobody happy!

The Trip of a Lifetime: A Drug User’s Fairytale

I grew up in the 70’s/80’s watching everyone do cocaine. I thought it was the most disgusting thing I had ever seen. when I was 8, i lived with my aunt for awhile and her husband would snort big rails of what he called “sugar” and then he’d do nasty things to my cousins (ages 2 and 2 weeks) and break things– there was lots of screaming and crying and my aunt would always beg me to never do drugs EVER!!!!!!

In high school, I fell in love with a heroin addict who killed himself. My best friend was a crystal meth addict. The adverts were everywhere, too, “THIS IS YOUR BRAIN ON DRUGS!” with the egg frying in the pan. My boyfriend fell asleep at the wheel of his mom’s Porsche and crashed into one of those signs with me in the passenger seat. I swore it was a sign from god. I designed myself to stick to my chain smoking and alcohol (I’d been drinking heavily since age 9 and this addiction was BAD ENOUGH).

Then I started going to raves… I got curiouser and curiouser, like Alice in Wonderland. I gave in and tried acid for the first time at 22 years old. It was the most fun I’d EVER HAD!!!

Something else happened at 22. I found out I had an ovarian cyst the size of a PEACH PIT. The cause? Another drug! Ortho novum 777 – the birth control pill that I’d been on for the past 7 years. My body was never the same after.

I’ve never done an ‘illegal’ drug that did the damage that that ‘legal’ one did.

The cancer made me angry and careless. My experimentation became a reckless fascination. I set out to try every single drug in existence and did drugs constantly for the next 10 years.

In 2002 I swore off illegal drugs. My life without all the drug craziness seemed like a dark void. I filled that void with marijuana. I watched a LOT of t.v. and did NOTHING with my life. I stayed with a boyfriend that beat the shit out of me and didn’t care. I was too lazy to leave. Lovely drug but zzzzzzzzz …. watch the motivation kill.

When I finally got off my lazy ass and left the asshole boyfriend, I found myself sober again and severely depressed. The doctor put me on ‘celexa’. this made me go CRAZY. Crazier than I ever went years ago when I experimented with ecstasy, mushrooms, acid and crystal meth.

Needless to say, I have friends that have done meth and acid for years and have LOST THEIR MINDS. One of them saw me driving by once and thought a giant twinkie was driving my car. I didn’t go THIS crazy, thank god.

Several prescription drug combinations later (and MANY side effects along with them, including 20 pounds of weight gain), the depression was gone but the cancer came back, this time in my right fallopian tube.

rainbowbowl

Sober now for a year, marijuana entered my life again as the miracle drug that helped me get THROUGH that cancer. It was the only way I could SLEEP, EAT .. hell, get THROUGH the day. I WAS IN SO MUCH PAIN. Legalize this drug NOW!!!!! 🙂

Confused?

Yeah, me too. If this made no sense, It’s because I’m trying to stop smoking pot again and I’m fiending a xanax like you wouldn’t believe. I had too much caffeine today and it’s making my words all jumble together. I could really go for a cigarette, even though I only smoke when I drink, but I can’t have a drink because it counteracts with my xanax. DRUGS ARE EVERYWHERE. ahhhh!!!!!

Am I pro drugs?

Hell yeah!!! Wouldn’t change a thing. My life was f*cked up before them and f*cked up after them, but I LOVE the rainbow trail that they created behind the rollercoaster of my crazy ass life while I was on them!!

What Life Should a 20-Something Live?

what life to live?

I am a twenty-four year old woman and I don’t know what I want to be, do or where I want to live when I grow up. Sound familiar? Lately I’ve spoken to a lot of girl friends and women and have found they all have questions and concerns about the life they have chosen and the lifestyles they are living. Women have more choices than their mothers and grandmothers, they have a choice to be whoever they want to be, to live however they want to live. This also makes for more stress, what if you miss your chance? What if you wake up when you’re 60 and realize you didn’t achieve any of your main goals and choices? Possibilities are endless. Lately ladies have been finding economic stresses and lifestyle decisions that leave them in shells, filled with questions. How can you decide how to live your life when you can’t even afford to live it? Will you marry? Start family? Start a business? Travel the world and write a novel? Record a demo and play your songs live? Redesign a product? Help people in some way? Whatever you life you create, build it — be conscious you’re always changing and you’re always molding your life into the life of your dreams. If you’re not happy where you are after honestly questioning yourself, find new routes, question yourself about new goals and dreams, make steps to create the life you want and that life will be yours.

DIY Lifestyle

Step 1: What is my lacking in? What is abundant in my life?
Step 2: What is my dream life and what goals do I want to achieve in life?
Step 3: How can I achieve these goals? (even if you’re not sure, quite a lot of resources are available for us to research possibilities)
Step 4: Make conscious efforts, daily, to create that life and achieve those goals. Talk to people doing what you want to do, tell them you admire them and get advice.
Step 5: Continue working towards and gaining the benefits of your dream lifestyle.

Lifestyle Inspiration

Is it most important to you to do what you want to do, live where you want to live or to live with whom you want to live with?

Lifestyle Q&A

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* The photo above was taken by myself in Hello Kitty’s house (Puroland, Japan).