Invisible Writer

I notice that since I haven’t blogged regularly or consistently in quite some time, my readership has gone down to zero (or maybe one friend who reads just because they’re my friend). This business of being a deep thinker, feeler, writer, sharer of ideas seems to be a pretty thankless one, unless of course, you’re wildly famous. Who knows, maybe I will be one day. 🙂

I must be getting old (haha) because while I see the relevance of social media, I also see the potential poison of it. You have to use it carefully, lest you’re swept up into checking it multiple times each HOUR just to see if someone posted something new. It is addicting. Not good. Also, there is so much moronic content on social media…I can’t take it sometimes. There is also a lot of good, but, you have to really hone in on it.

Social media caters to short attention spans (maybe even exacerbates them if already present). So, the more thoughtful content (larger pieces of writing that you actually have to READ) can get passed by. Maybe I need to pick more engaging content to write about?? But, I feel like the human condition is plenty relatable and seems like it should be more apt to garner more interest than it does.

I find myself a bit cynical and bitter that my writings are only read if I post about salsa dancing (my other blog). While I adore dancing, I tire of writing about it. I’d much rather write about the day to day struggles we all face and hopefully encourage someone along the way. So, for now, I am a bit invisible. Hopefully the more I write, the more folks I’ll connect with who have similar interests and focus.

©2019 I AM KAYDEE “Invisible Writer”

Image by Free-Photos from Pixabay

Loving the Whole You

Loving myself has been a journey. If I am honest, I must admit that I’ve got a ways to go yet. That isn’t to say that I haven’t made any progress. On the contrary, I have made huge strides, leaps and bounds in this area.  I am doing well in this process, but, I must always remind myself that it IS a process and therefore takes time and work, which is not fun for an impatient person. I often battle inwardly thinking I should have arrived already at some great accomplished place of perfect and complete self love.

Sometimes I think to myself, where does this expectation come from?  Why do I think I ought to have “arrived” by now, somehow?? Is it because I’m a certain age? Because I’ve already accomplished some other major goals in life? Because of society’s pressure bearing down upon me? The answer is all of the above. There are internal and external pressures involved; pressures I put on myself and pressures I feel from forces outside of myself.  You could say to me, “You don’t have to accept external pressures,” and you are correct. But, it’s often not that simple.  External pressures and expectations, whether from individual people (family, friends and strangers) or from media or from society-at-large are often overwhelmingly present.

For instance, have you ever been chatting with a friend or colleague something on your mind? You were thinking maybe they’d commiserate with you or make some small comment about it.  Instead, they proceeded to give full-on advice laced with a few veiled insults in the process.  But they were just “trying to help”, right?  That’s happened to me a time or two and usually the full impact of what was said didn’t hit me until AFTER the conversation was over.  Sure, sure the insults may not have been intentional but they still made their impact and left me feeling a bit hurt, angry and temporarily insecure about something I had no business feeling insecure about.  I then would have to go into “damage control mode” to counteract the impact of the negative words. I’d remind myself to “consider the source” or that they were “trying to help and unaware of their insult” or that “this person tends to be very opinionated so I must take their  ‘advice’ with a grain of salt”.  I’d have to remind myself “I am beautiful, capable, intelligent, and I love my body” or whatever other positive self-talk phrase was applicable at the moment.

Thankfully these types of interactions don’t happen often, but, they do happen.  Maybe they happen often for you with a particular friend, family member, coworker or boss.  It’s not easy to remain unaffected when people are critical towards you. But, let’s talk about another item that may undermine our ability to love ourselves fully… the influence of media.

Perhaps you are scrolling through your social media (or media of choice) and you see an article about, “How to have the perfect body” or “Getting beach body ready” or “How to get rid of those love handles” and along with the article is a picture of a person with seemingly zero body fat and toned muscles and curves in the ‘right’ places.  Then you look in the mirror at YOUR body and see something different.  Is your body less perfect? Less desirable somehow? Less beautiful?  The subliminal messages of these articles and pictures is that if you are not perfectly toned and in shape with zero body fat, or if you don’t look like the image that is portrayed by media, then something is wrong with you.  You begin to feel as though you are not measuring up or that your body is not good enough.

These articles and advertisements may have good intentions. They may want to promote fitness information. Or… they may be advertising a product or service that they want you to buy, so the advertisement / article plays on your personal insecurities about your appearance, your body shape, etc. in order to sell their product.  These subliminal messages tell us we should only go to the beach if we have a ‘beach body’.  Or when we see the that photo of the model with amazing abs has over 100,000 “likes”, we may incorrectly internally rationalize that have to look like that model in order to be “liked”.  It is all in the marketing and we fall for it.  If we are not careful, we feel like we are not measuring up somehow.

Then, there are the articles saying things like, “Things you should accomplish in your 20’s, 30’s, 40’s¨ or “What you should wear in your 20’s, 30’s, 40’s, etc¨?  Who are “they” to be saying what we should or should not wear or what we should have accomplished by a certain age?  Sure, you can use these types of articles as a LOOSE guideline if you’d like, but, people are defying age stereotypes daily!  But, if we buy into these articles as more than for just entertainment or opinion, we could get caught up into thinking we’ve failed somehow by not reaching a certain goal or marker by a certain age.

Sometimes I swear this system is meant to keep us living in a state of dissatisfaction with ourselves and our lives. We can fall into the trap of endlessly striving to be some ideal rather than learning to actually LOVE ourselves as we are.  Not that we will never need or want to improve in some areas or facets of ourselves because we will.  But, we must first learn to accept and embrace ourselves FULLY.  We all have shortcomings, flaws, things that we don’t necessarily prefer about our appearances, etc., but we must love these parts of ourselves as well, and love them wholeheartedly.  Do you have stretchmarks?  Love them.  Do you have “love handles”? Love them.  Do you have scars? Love them.  Do you have a tendency to chatter on and on? Love yourself.  Do you stutter? Love yourself. We are all imperfect and it’s okay.   What’s not okay is allowing your own self-talk, other people’s opinions, or other external sources to make you feel less worthy as a human being.  You, I, we … do not have to be perfect people. We should strive to be good people. We should strive to be the best version of ourselves and that is different for everyone.  But, do not cast aside who you are at this moment.

It can be very difficult to manage if we have people in our lives who constantly tear us down. Or if we are in social situations on a regular basis where we must deal with negative and/or bullying type people (work, school).  There is no easy solution in those situations. The dynamics are not always identical.  But, if you are being bullied at work or school, talk to someone you trust and someone who can help you.  Try talking to a teacher, administrator, friend, parent. At work you may also want to speak to a manager you trust or to the HR department or to a friend outside of work who can give you wise counsel.  Also try using Google to look up information for resources who might be able to help you.

The last thing I will mention is this.  When it comes to learning to love your whole self, the only caveat to this is if you know that you are harmful to other people or to yourself. If you know you are someone who purposely hurts others or if you purposely hurt yourself, loving yourself does not mean staying the same.  If you struggle with some dark parts of yourself or something that is bigger than you can handle that you know is destructive, then loving yourself would mean getting HELP for yourself so that the harmful behavior does not continue.  Loving ourselves also means doing what we must to help ourselves to get better.

These are my thoughts.  Blessings.

Kay Dee // @kaydeespeaks

https://iamkaydee1.wordpress.com
Facebook, IG, Twitter @kaydeespeaks
YouTube: bit.ly/KayDeeSpeaks

Photo credit: pexels.com

“Likes” Aren’t Real Life

It’s been some years since I entered the land of social media.  It is its own entity.  It should have its own zip code.  Maybe even its own country code.  I initially (and hesitantly) entered this new place, just to monitor my kids … and to see what all of the hype was about.  I gradually got sucked into the vortex of “likes”, “shares”, “RT’s”, “thumbs up”, “<hearts>”, etc.  I also realized it was a place where I could network with others; where I could keep in touch with the goings on friends and family  who live far away; where I could grow my business; where I could have an outlet to express myself artistically; and where I could share from my heart things that are important to me… as well as share posts just for entertainment value.

There are times when I honestly have loved and hated social media.  Sometimes my newsfeed looks more like a bad infomercial, or the latest edition of the National Enquirer, than a “news” feed.  On the personal side, I’m embarrassed that I have, from time to time, gotten sucked into liking the “likes” (or equivalent) and have become very discouraged at times when I did not receive many.  I began to equate these “likes” with some sort of approval, or self-worth.  Foolishness, I know.  To re-center myself I have found that talking to my REAL friends has been of immeasurable value.

What do I mean by REAL friends?  We all know that if you’re on social media for any length of time, you have what I’ll call “social media friends”.  These are people with whom you don’t really have a real-life relationship.  They are merely online contacts.  I’m talking about friends I interact with on a regular basis, and even more so, friends who are in my close-knit circle with whom I’ve built and established trusted relationships.

By concentrating more on my real life relationships, I am able to put social media life into its proper perspective.  None of it really so very important.  Understandably if you’re an entertainer or promoter and rely heavily on social media metrics for your livelihood and future opportunities, then, yes, I can see it holding more importance.  But, if  you’re the ‘average Joe’ and social media is just one of your hobbies or something you engage in for fun, then it shouldn’t hold such a high place in your life (in my opinion).

Like anything else, it has its good and bad points.  For kids/teens/young adults it’s a primary form of communication and of relating to the world.  But, we’ve also seen its destructive side, and we need to keep it in balance.

 

 

©2017 Kay Dee Speaks, “”Likes” Aren’t Real Life”