Monday Musings

Around Here Lately

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I’ve been living in LA for a few months now, but I feel like I’m barely beginning to get used to it. After looking through some images I’ve taken during my time here, I realize I need to get out more and take more images; I need to take more advantage of the area and get out of my comfort zone. In the meantime, here are some of the photo I found.IMG_2274IMG_0163IMG_2270IMG_9946

Introverts like Parties too

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I believe it was Tolkien who said “All that is gold does not glitter; not all those who wander are lost; all introverts do not hate being social.” Okay, maybe he didn’t say that last part, but he should have, along with foreseeing Dumbledore’s character and making a separate book about the epic battle that would definitely ensue between Gandalf and Dumbledore (#TeamDumbledore). Okay, I think I’m getting off tangent, but seriously, sometimes a person has to look past the surface to see the value of something. I’m not implying that all introverts have some greater hidden value that extroverts lack, but just because I prefer not to talk as often does not mean I prefer having my voice be unheard. These are factors that relate to my extroversion that I’ve been able to acknowledge and that I should keep working on, all fancily formatted and everything.

Also, as a warning, I don’t mean to identify all introverts with being, quiet, shy, homebodies, but the stereotypes are there and this post serves more to address them. Just as a quick recap, introverts are not defined by those qualities, but as individuals that prefer “solitary activities and get exhausted by social interaction. They tend to be quite sensitive to external simulation in general.” In other words, being an introvert or an extrovert is more about where you get energy from, whether it’s from an internal world or an external world.

Embrace it.

I used to think of my avoidance to being as extroverted as my friends as a weakness. Honestly, sometimes I still do. I have tried to push myself past the point of being comfortable. Being pushed out of your comfort zone could be beneficial but in this instance, it wasn’t. I didn’t feel like I was being authentic, which in turn, was the real weakness. Thanks to the yin and yang, the universe, all the gods, one God, Beyonce, or whatever suits your fancy, balance was created in the world and it was created for a reason. For day, there is night. For extroverts, there are introverts. For rice cakes, there are pizzas. Embrace your most authentic self and the world will reward you, hopefully with a pizza.

Use it as a strength.

An introvert is known for being more of a listener than a talker, but as I previously stated, that doesn’t mean I prefer for my voice to go unheard. Now I try to see listening as a skill that can continue to be crafted to later go on and serve as a platform. This could be used for other people to not just hear me later on, but to really listen and process what I try to communicate. It’s important to remember Meryl Streep when we feel like we’re not being heard (and at all other times because, you know, it’s Meryl) and what she had to say about it:

“It’s amazing what you can get if you quietly, clearly and authoritatively demand it.” 

Listen to what others are telling you, then use your limited speaking time as a strength to say it once, and to make it final.

Take your quiet time, and your social time.

My new tagline for meeting people should be “Hi, I’m Laura, and though I identify with being a homebody please don’t count me out of all your social outings.” I try to not feel guilty for taking my alone time, but I have noticed that leads to less invitations out. This point is simple: Take your alone time, but not so much that you’re alone an unnecessary amount of time. Make sure that your alone time is that, and not an alternative to social anxiety. Reach out and initiate meeting with friends. Avoid the small talk and have meaningful conversations.  Join clubs. Try to have something scheduled in the future to be excited about, whether it’s solo reading time or a fun concert.

Do not overthink.

This is also a simple point; alone time leads to thinking, which could lead to ruminating, which has the potential for over-analyzing. I could go into why this is bad, but I’m sure you know of its downfalls. For me, this has interfered more with my decision-making skills. Now I try to make quicker decisions and run with them. If it was the wrong decision, I can learn from it and go from there. It’s better to make the wrong choice and learn from it than to make none at all.

I’d love to hear any other tips/mantras/what-have-you that others have for being introverted, or what this is like from an extrovert’s point of view. Also, I recommend this site that does a wonderful job at pinpointing which category you fall into, along with your personality type (#TeamINFP!).

Image via Telegraph UK.

Falling Asleep

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You know that feeling? You know, that one feeling. The one where your body decides to be mean and jerks you awake just as you’re about to fall asleep. Today I read that it happens because your heart rate decreases so rapidly that you’re brain jerks you awake to make sure you’re still alive. Another theory is that the brain gets confused by your muscles relaxing, thinks you’re falling, and causes you to tense up. Either way, there’s some miscommunication going on here between the mind and the body.

Here is the part where you insert your own symbolic interpretation of situations in life that could also apply to this. Maybe it’s you making a bigger deal out of something smaller and freaking out for no reason. Maybe it’s taking life too seriously. Maybe it’s staying in tune with all those signs your body is giving you (yes, go see a doctor already). Or maybe we should stop trying to make a symbolic interpretation out of the smallest things (guilty).

For all you insomniacs out there, want to know how to supposedly fall asleep in under one minute? Follow the 4-7-8 rule: Breath in through your nose for 4 seconds, hold your breath for 7 seconds, then exhale through your mouth for 8 seconds.

Image source

Monday Musings: The Act of Doing

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It’s so easy to get used to something. Used to the feel of clothes against my skin. Used to feeling comfortable. Used to being mediocre. Something can only remain new for so long.

It’s a Monday today. I’m quite used to Mondays. The beginning of a new week. I’ve decided that this week is a cause for routines and new habits.

Inspiration can only last so long. It’s what gets you started, but routine is what keeps you going (hopefully all the way to the end). So this week, I’ll stick to that routine – a routine of doing.