Can we do a little lifewithjson blog real quick? Like not about cars, not about being sad about one of the best shows ending this year, not about anything that some of you might only come here for. Just literally life with me, positivity, relationships, achievements, progress, downfalls, and some self-reflection. Maybe this can be a feel-good post for some of you reading it, it may feel like nothing to you, it may feel like jibberish, or maybe you can relate to it depending on how you’re feeling right now. Maybe you’re reading it while you’re waiting somewhere trying to kill some time, or you accidentally clicked your way here and are caught in the middle of this paragraph and are too invested now to leave. I just want to use this space to reflect on things and get my thoughts out – afterall – this is what I started the blog for.
I used to write and take pictures about everything. There was a sense of joy when I got to share what I was up to in my life because there were people that were interested. That’s why people blog – because there’s a certain niche that is interested in knowing what’s going on with other people. It’s like a sort of free-ride voyeurism where I decide what to show you. It’s like an old-school Instagram/Tik-Tok where instead of watching, you’re reading. Kind of a lost art nowadays. I wish more people gave more capacity and time to write things rather than record things. When you read things, you decide how you feel as you’re doing it – you assume the tone and the emotion – and it’s all dependent on whether you are having a good day or a bad day. When you watch things, all of it is laid out for you already – there’s no brain power needed to watch a reel. The difference between the two is the level of emotion that is invoked during each activity. As you’re reading this, perhaps you’re relating or agreeing. Maybe you’re disagreeing and finding that you’re unsure what I’m rambling on about… The point is that there is some sort of thought.
I’m not in a mid-life crisis. I’m only 35. “Only?” you ask. Maybe I’m old depending on who’s reading this. I want to talk about how I feel – I feel complacent, happy and calm. I feel like I’ve reached the point in my life where some sort of Zen is all I want and feel because I’ve had so many hard years of learning how to get here. So many years of the devil on my shoulder telling me to feel jealous, angry, or upset about things that were outside of my control and then cooking myself over that same fire over and over again when really, all I needed to do was let go. Mind you, letting go is not easy when you’re young and you think everything is about you and everyone’s opinions and criticism chips away at you. Let me tell you – it isn’t and it shouldn’t. Letting go for me was realizing I could only control myself and how I felt towards people and circumstances. I can’t control what people think of me, of my things, my thoughts, my actions, or my life and so when you come to that hard realization, you’ll feel free.
As an example, there are times Diana would tell me a story about something that upset her or bothered her at work because someone did something and she was stewing over it. Many times, my answer would be like “but that’s not your problem?” or “but you can’t control that?”. And every time, she would say “I know” and my response would be “so then lets forget about it”. Instantly, the gas would shut off, the fire would dissipate and she would move on. It’s not about “not caring”, just to be clear. I care about a lot of things – my family, my self, my well-being, my family’s well-being. It’s more about not letting things that negatively impact the things I care about negatively impact me. Read that again. It can be things, people, attitudes… You name it. The way that I stay complacent, happy and calm is by focusing only on the closest things to me and ensuring they get 100% of my attention. I don’t mind other peoples’ business, I don’t compare myself to people. It might be brazen to say but the things I “don’t care” about are other peoples’ lives. That’s not to say I can’t be happy for you or share joy in your achievements, but at the end of the day, my happiness is what matters the most. In other words, your own happiness should be your number one priority and responsibility – however you get there is up to you.
I think social media has made it very difficult for people (myself, included) to find and marinate in their own happiness. Opening an app and seeing people make money, raise families, buy expensive things, eating at expensive restaurants, sharing their beauty and workouts, new cars, new parts… The amount of “good” things to take in within 5 minutes is underestimated and overwhelming. Imagine doing this hundreds of times a day – at one point, you’re bound to say “I need to workout”, “I need new clothes”, “I want to order takeout”, “I need to find new ways to make more money”, “I need to be a better parent”. All the needs and so little time. What happens when you have all these “needs” you think you need but can’t achieve them all right now? Feelings of conflict. Despair. Frustration. Cognitive dissonance. Maybe you didn’t think of that exact term, but that’s what it is. And if you don’t know how to disconnect or detach from what you’re seeing and what you’re feeling, you’ll never be 100% happy with yourself. It took me a long time to learn how to view it with a blank mind, so to speak. I relish in the truly happy moments for my close friends and I leave the rest behind with a swipe without a second thought.
The last thing for me was the realization that not everyone in your life is good for you; friends and family alike. I’ve always been the type to easily be able to disconnect from relationships if I felt that it wasn’t positive to me and it was good because it really helped me focus on good people and to seek positive relationships without much guilt. I think it’s important to be able to realize that and to let that go. The hard part for me is constantly trying to assess the relationships that we create and/or have and now not only figuring out how it impacts me, myself, and I but how does it impact Diana and the kids. These last few months, I’ve really had to do some soul searching, and a lot of the searching led me right back to these relationships on our front step all along. People don’t get a free pass because they’re blood or because they’ve known you for all their lives – they only got free entry. So many destructive relationships hide behind the mask of the loving, familiar face and I hate that because you have to lie to yourself that the mask is not really there. The hard part is not letting go; it’s telling yourself to stop giving excuses for someone else to be a part of your life when they really shouldn’t be. It’s a really hard thing to come to terms to because you say “but they’re family” or “but we’ve been friends for so long” and I often have to remind myself that people change just as I do and sometimes what was once good for your life can now be toxic.
Alas, let’s have some final thoughts together cause I’m feeling good about where we are. It’s taken me a long damn time to really feel comfortable in myself and my life and not having to worry about things like followers and likes and making everybody happy at the sake of my own happiness. Man, if you’re at that place now or you found this garden of Zen sooner – I’m happy for you – because it’s truly a good place to be. If you’re not there yet and are seeking the way, I hope you get there with good people along the way. Social media is just entertainment – it’s not a life guide or a place for competition on who is living the best life even though we only share the best aspects of our life. I just want to take cool pictures and post dope videos and create wicked things. Destructive relationships are not confined to people you just met – they can exist in all people and it’s important you filter them out somehow. They are an unnecessary burden that don’t deserve your shoulder. To all the people in our circle – I’m glad you’re here and thank you for inspiring W’s over L’s.
Thanks for reading. Maybe I’ll find some time to blog again in the next year LOL