Taking Responsibility

Today’s horoscope suggested that I take responsibility for some of the not so good parts of my life. It’s right. I mean how often do we actually sit down and take responsibility for the things we mistakenly bring into our lives? Not often. I know that I preach my advice for others to really take a deep look into themselves and acknowledge the wrongs they’ve done to really overcome whatever it is they may be going through. It’s time for me to take my own advice, no?

Today I take responsibility for something as small as signing up to a random website and then getting upset at receiving the junk mail that goes with it. I go through the hassle of signing up for things to then find myself unsubscribing. I mean, as soon as I plug in my email should’t I already know what I’m in for? Of course… Yet I still do it anyways.

I take responsibility for conditioning people to treat me the way they do. Not setting boundaries from the start allows people to get a different perception as to how to carry themselves within the friendship. The fact that I bend over backwards at all times for people allows them to believe that I will be okay with anything. How can I get mad at someone for treating me the way that I have put myself out there to be treated? From the beginning I should be outspoken and assertive in the things that matter most to me instead of trying to constantly people please. This alone has set me up for many failures in friendships as well as romantic relationships.

I take responsibility in not writing as much as I should for the kind of goals I would like to achieve. I procrastinate or worse, I allow for laziness to completely take over. I allow for others to talk me into wasting time with them (because typically that is all we do) instead of taking reigns of my own personal time and dedicating it to something that will benefit me and what it is I want for my future.

I take responsibility for not speaking up when I should or shutting up when I shouldn’t say a word.  There is a time and a place for both and there are times I wish I knew when they were. I tend to blurt out my opinion, at times without thought, when all people may need is an ear to listen. So I admit, I should keep my advice to myself unless I am particularly asked.

I take full responsibility for not staying connected with those truly who love me, even though I really just don’t know how to. I allow for my introverted self to shine through most times instead of finding balance with the teenie bit of extrovertedness I do have. I could just chalk it up to my childhood and blaming the fact that I don’t know how to really bond with those closest to me, since detachment has always been a coping mechanism. But seriously, now that I have learned this aspect of myself, why not work on it instead of excusing it, right?

I responsibly admit to not knowing how to always handle difficult situations which in turn leads me to letting people down. I have quite the list going, although I will say that in the last two years I haven’t really had to add new people onto that list so maybe I am making improvements to this area of my life?

I admit to making mistakes, to having skeletons in my closet, and to not being perfect, even if my close friends poke fun at me being “little miss perfect”.

I take responsibility for not eating as healthy as I should and sometimes half-assing my workouts. I will be better, I promise!

I take responsibility for sometimes being way too hard on myself and for not only setting too high of standards for myself, but also holding the bar high for others. Why set these social bars? If I can’t be perfect, why should I expect for others to be? I mean, in all honesty, it is  good thing to set standards but one also has to look at each individual as a case by case scenario. The same standards I hold for person A may not be the best standards to hold person B or C to. So I take responsibility for not always taking into consideration a person’s individuality when it comes to this.

I take responsibility for not always eliminating negative influences out of my life as soon as I pick up on the fact that they’re in fact a negative influence. Whether it be people, places, or things, once I figure that their impact in my life isn’t a positive one, I should say “Adios!” and keep it moving without guilt or second guessing.

With that said, I will take responsibility for not listening to my intuition as often as I should. I could have already avoided a bad romantic relationship (or two), wasting time on counter productive friendships, food poisoning (I knew I shouldn’t have kept eating that), worthless jobs, ect…

Lastly, I take responsibility for not having more faith and confidence in myself.  I know me and I do know what I’m capable of. I know that I can achieve all of my dreams and those that I haven’t even thought of yet. I need to strive harder and I am more than willing to work on myself so that I can be the person I know I can be.

Acknowledging responsibility, it is one hell of much needed kick in the ass. Are you strong enough to acknowledge yours?

 

 

It’s Tea Time

There is a bar right by my house that I love to go to hang out. It’s one of those hole in the wall places that you would probably drive by a million times and you’d never even know it was there. This is my Cheers bar and although when I walk in they don’t shout out my name, their flash of a smile or nod of recognition is just the same.

This place isn’t like any other bar. It is unique in its style as well as in its brand. It serves no alcoholic beverages, instead it is all tea based products. That’s right, my favorite bar to frequent to is a tea bar. A vast difference from where I would want to hang out a year ago. It’s dimly lit inside and although there is one side of the place made up entirely of windows, they are covered by a one sided film that allows you to see out but not in. I love this little fact because I can watch what is going on outside as if I were watching t.v, whether it be a group of people outside smoking and mingling or just merely staring at the trees swaying in the breeze.

The bar for the most part is pretty quiet. I love to sit in the lounge area tucked away in my corner on one of their antiquated, yet comfortable couches, tribal masks hung for decoration dance far above my head. From here, when not in the company of my friends, I work on writing or maybe do a little reading. Today I people watch.

One of the things I absolutely love about this place is how all different types of people stroll in and out of this tiny establishment. Those you’ll mainly find here are modern day hippie kids. You know the type. The ones that listen to Sublime and  Slightly Stoopid, laid back in their youthful ways. Those that have no real prejudicial thought or agenda against others, their only true focus is on bettering themselves and those around them. Sprinkled among that crowd you’ll also find your gym rats, your business professionals, your serious video-gamers, your student working on an overdue paper. At this place you will find anyone and everyone and all of them are intermingling with one another.

As I take a sip my from usual tea, I can’t help but smile at the thought that we have all decided to be right here, at this moment, together. No matter how different of a life we may all lead, today we had the same thought and decided to visit this very bar to consume our signature drink. I look at these individuals around me and it amazes me how those that are so vastly different from one another, those who in the “real” world would probably never find a genuine commonality otherwise, have found a common thread not worth cutting. Even I, who is a self diagnosed extroverted introvert, has made friends with people I never once thought I would make real friends with. Not because of any other reason other than it’s hard for me to stir up conversation with complete strangers unless there is a solid reason to, unless I know that rejection is not an option left on the table. I have found comfort among all these now familiar faces. There is comfort in knowing who my “tea”tender is and how I don’t even have to see who is working behind the bar but by just listening to what is playing over the speakers will tell me. The familiar sound of pool balls being racked and then breaking in the next room, their game room, is always comforting. It’s a simple reminder of life, scattering its traces of enjoyment throughout this tiny bar.

Sometimes I daydream about how this bar will be the place in which I finally finish my book in. Even if it doesn’t happen here, the meaning of this place already holds enough weight to be a part of me, at least for a very long while. Who would have thought that a bar serving only tea would be, for me, much more enjoyable than any ol’ bar serving spirits?

This little tea bar is my getaway, my comfort, my safe haven.

Eventually Works For Me

After my last disaster of a relationship (realistically its been the last two but who’s really counting?) I decided to go on a hiatus from the dating scene. It wasn’t more than a few weeks into my celibacy that my close friends were adamant that I get myself out there again. Never being the type to rebound date it took  me months to really even contemplate going out one on one with a guy.  Five months later I woke up one  morning thinking to myself that maybe I was now ready to go out and at least mingle with the opposite sex. As I went out with friends I began actually looking at the strangers around me, wondering “what if”? Not many peaked my interest. Those that did were either already locked down, lived long distance (not doing that again), played for the other team, or after a moment’s conversation just wasn’t meant for me.

On a random night, while my amazing roommate and I were having a glass (or two) of wine by the pool deck, he decided to try to bring up the whole “dating app” scene to me. He already knew that I was never a true fan of making up a profile to try to “find love”. He always poked fun at the way that I was set on finding the man of my dreams organically. This night however he decided to give the topic of conversation another try and this time I was more open to listening. He listed cons but his pros outweighed them. In his eyes it was the most obvious answer to what he called my dilemma. As far as I knew I was in no dilemma. Being single was good for me. It was only random periods of time in which I really craved having someone again. But like any other craving, as quickly as the wave would come, it would then again go. His advice wasn’t one I took seriously until there came a moment of sheer boredom.

On this particular night I had been extremely bored. I wasn’t in the mood to write or read ( I know! Can you imagine?) nor was I in the mood to binge watch Netflix or anything else that I had been using to combat time. I decided to open up a dating app and see what actually resulted from it. To be quite honest, coming up with the profile was to me the fun part. Answering profile questions, setting up a summary of yourself, pictures, ect.. that was all fun to me. The moment I hit the button to actually activate my profile was exactly the moment the anxiety crept in. Within just a couple hours I had 663 potential “matches”, a list of people who liked my profile and wanted to chat. About 400 of those people messaged, most messages being one liners like, “Hey mami..” or “Hi there beautiful. Wanna chat?” There were quite a few creepy messages, explicit and very to the point in what it was they were desperately searching for. I decided that instead of me sifting through all the crap, I would just scroll through and I would message the ones  I was mostly interested in.

I was active on the app for about 2 days total. I personally messaged two guys and have since then gone on two dates with one of them. The other has been really trying to convince me to “allow” him to take me out but I haven’t been motivated to do much more than a little messaging here and there. Both great guys, yet neither have me feeling comfortable enough to join the “official” dating scene again the reason having nothing to do with them, and all to do with me.

Its been weeks now since I have discontinued my profile and I have officially stopped looking for a special someone to meet. Instead what I’ve done has been much soul searching and trying to understand exactly where I am at this point in my life and what I really want for myself.

My findings are honest and real.

Simply put, I am at a point in my life in which I want to be completely and utterly selfish. I enjoy spending time with myself focusing on the things I want to do and the things that make me happy.

I want to think that due to all the newness in my life these last few months (real single-hood, new home, new job, new friends, ect..) I have come into a new self. A revamped and upgraded version of me. I got rid of all that was weighing me down and it has only been just recently that I have found balance in this new life I lead. Changes as small as choosing who to keep within my inner circle or as big as taking a better job but with a slight pay cut affect who we are, how we live our lives, and what priorities we set in life. For the past few years I have sacrificed a lot of the things I’ve wanted to pursue or do because I place the importance of others and what they might think or say above my own needs. I relocated to a new city solely  for a significant other (do not recommend it), I have quit jobs due to other’s disapproval of it, I haven’t taken travel opportunities due to a boyfriend at the time not “liking” the idea of them not being able to come along. Since being single, really single, there has been no one to answer to or keep in mind. If I have money to take me out, I do it. I choose where I go, who I invite (if any one at all), I decide how long I stay out for. If I decide to stay in whether due to wanting or needing to, I decide how I spend my time. There is no me feeling guilty because maybe I chose to go into my room to read a book. When I get ready to leave the house, I get ready for myself. I don’t get anxious about where I’m going, who I’m going to meet, what I should wear, will I say something stupid and embarrass myself (I mean it’ll happen, but I don’t care if it does.)? I don’t have to worry about meeting a guy’s group of friends and then their family (Will they like me? What if they don’t?) My days and nights are carefree and genuinely happy. I daydream of places I want to travel to and not of those places I’m compromising to see. I am not living out anyone else’s dreams, just my own.

I thought I was ready to hit the dating scene but now that I have dipped my toe in the water testing it, I know that I’m not. I have friends that tell me that maybe I’m overthinking it. “Just let them wine and dine you for fun… a free drink and some dinner never hurt anyone” but to me I don’t see the point. To find new friends is great and I’m always open to it, but to date for the hell of it, simply for a free meal and drinks? To me, that’s not only a waste of time but also asking for bad karma. To me that’s leading people on, taking advantage of their sincere interest in me in hopes for a future together. Instead I rather tend to go on dates only on the rare occasions in which I have money. That way I feel no guilt or any obligation. Being Miss. Independent I never want to leave myself at the mercy of others. I like to be able to contribute for half the check or at the very least, the tip. Yes, most times a man won’t take a penny in the name of good ol’ fashion chivalry but this lady also understands the meaning of hard earned cash and will be damned if she uses a man for a  meal ticket.

There was promise with the one I went out with from the dating app, but my current financial situation hindered me a bit. One of the very first things he mentioned to me while on our first date was how he highly believed in financial equality within a relationship. Right now, what I can afford to do between paychecks is very minimal so for me that was just another sign as to why I should not be dating at the moment. Don’t get me wrong, he was quite the (handsome) gentleman and would always offer to pay for any date we planned for but if I’m not comfortable being able to hangout with someone due to personal financial reasons, then the simple fact that I feel uncomfortable is enough to deter me from moving things forward as an item. To be totally honest, this is probably residual trauma from the last relationship I was in where monetary issues ruled every important aspect of our lives from the very beginning. It left one hell of a sour taste in my mouth and therefore I always swore to myself that I would never allow money to play a major part in any of my relationships again.

The idea of dating to me signifies much more than a meal and a means to kill time. I’d like to eventually find that person to share and build with. We can make memories and be support for one another through our future stages of life. I look to add to their life and they add to mine. A solid friendship that’ll endure the test of time. A friendship in which we both can be comfortable in being ourselves and where we don’t impose unrealistic expectations upon one another. The compromises we would make would be out of genuine care and not because you feel as though you “have” to. I’d like to find that one who will make me smile and laugh much more than cry and stress out. One who I could do the same for as easily as it is to breath. I believe that in life, if you do not settle for anything less than what you hope to have, you will find exactly what you’re looking for. I believe that eventually it will happen and “eventually” works for me. Until then, I will continue to live my single-hood happily and in peace.