I Hope You Learn To Romanticize Your Life

Life is beautiful. It is heart wrenching. It is exhausting. It is magic. It is about expectations and disappointments. It is not knowing how you will come out of its storms. “Life loves those who dare to live it,” as Maya Angelou says. Life is always unfolding and we are always evolving. 

In this life, the only thing we have in the roller coaster of life is our attitude. We have our unique perspective from which we look at the world. No two people see the same thing. It’s a wonderful thing to train your eyes to see the world’s beauty and for your heart to be sensitive to touching moments. We can create our magic ourselves. 

We often fall into the trap of thinking that our lives have to be this extraordinary adventure or else it is this mundane and boring life. But beauty lies in the simplest of things. It lies in being present and truly making an effort to enjoy each moment. 

It is when you feel the warmth of the sun on your face on a cold day. It is when you hug a dear friend for a little while. It is when you savor every bite of a meal you have been anticipating. It is listening to a piece of music and letting you take you somewhere else. It is making your bed in the morning to motivate yourself for the day. It is making your coffee just the way you like it. It is playing with that cat on the street. It is singing your heart out in the car. It is a hot shower after a long day and many more simple moments like these.

Life doesn’t have to be fancy to be beautiful. I used to think that beauty lies in the extravagant and the luxurious experiences, but life is so much more than this. It is about looking nowhere but where you are and noticing what is right and lovely right where you are. When you have that mindset, your life becomes eternally more beautiful. Take things slow and absorb your experiences. Live mindfully.

Romanticizing your life is also about daring to take risks, daring to venture in the unpredictable so that we could be surprised. Unpredictability and new experiences set our hearts on fire and ignite a new desire and hunger to live our lives and appreciate them. Go out there, try new things. I used to wait for people to create joyful moments that I could join but I would wait forever. The moment I took control and tried new things whether people were joining me or not was the moment my life became so much more interesting and people naturally started joining.

Create your world and make it a safe haven. I hope you lead a life as beautiful and as wonderful as you. You deserve to have it all. You deserve happiness and awe. Be like a butterfly that spreads glitter all around the universe.

Who Are We, If Not For Our Experiences?

If something were to happen that would cause you to lose all of your past memories permanently, who would you be? This question absolutely perplexes me, because I feel like I am so much a compilation of my experiences. And aren’t we all?

I want to know if someone would bother to tell me about all of the things I’ve struggled with in my life, or if they’d just let me go on in my ignorant bliss. I want to know if I would actually be blissful, or if I’d find other things to worry about. I want to know if I’d have the same experiences or run into the same problems that I did before.

I want to know who I am at my core, is what I’m trying to say. I want to know who I would be if I hadn’t been shaped by the people, places and events in my life. Because I know I wouldn’t be a blank canvas. I’d have likes and dislikes, opinions and passions, and they wouldn’t be because I’ve been influenced to behave a certain way.

Many times I’ve alluded to how I’ve experienced my fair share of problems (although I haven’t disclosed what exactly they’ve been, you can probably infer) and I’ve also noted how much I’ve changed through the process of coming back from these painful experiences. I want to clarify something. I don’t think I’ve actually changed. I think I’ve become more and more myself. Every time I’m pushed to my limits and don’t know how I’ll go on, the way I eventually do is by removing a layer of my ego and living out what I know to be truly me.

There is nothing more liberating than the day you realize you’re living without consideration of other’s opinions. It’s the day that you’re focused on what you are doing, right in that moment. It’s when you don’t hold back because you’re afraid of who may judge you and make you feel embarrassed. It’s also the day that you accept negative opinions as weightless, insignificant thoughts of others. You make yourself the only person in control of your life. As it should be.

Your Life Becomes The Sum Of What You Tolerate

In an ideal world, life would amount to the sum of our intentions.

Good things would happen to good people; we’d be measured by our heart and depth and character.

While this is true to some degree — life is undoubtedly kinder toward those who are kind to it — the truth is that your intentions don’t amount to your outcomes. Just wanting something badly enough does not qualify you to have it, simply believing that you’re capable of more does not mean you will actually achieve more.

In the end, your life amounts to the sum of what you tolerate.

It is defined by what you allow. 

You are treated as well as you allow other people to treat you. When you set boundaries or cut off contact with those who do not meet those expectations, you are setting the standard for relationships in your life.

You achieve as much as you allow yourself to pursue. You create as often as you are willing to show up, and to begin.

You grow as much as you allow yourself to feel uncomfortable. We often think that it is discomfort that holds us back from becoming who we want to be, when in fact, that feeling, once truly acknowledged, will point us in the direction that we need to create change.

If you are willing to tolerate mistreatment, you will be mistreated.

If you are willing to tolerate unhappiness, you will remain unhappy.

If you are willing to tolerate dissatisfaction, you will remain dissatisfied.

Your life only truly becomes your own on the day that you decide you will not — for another second of your existence — tolerate less than you know you are capable of having, doing less than you are capable of doing, and being less than you are capable of being.

The truth is that nobody else is going to give this to you.

Nobody is going to wake you up to this fact.

Nobody is going to sit you down and give you a power point presentation about your worth and potential, and nobody is going to strategize a way to make it a reality.

The only way it is going to happen is if you decide you are no longer going to be okay with excuses, empty words or broken dreams. It is only going to happen if you decide that you will no longer tolerate anything less than the outcomes you want, and the life you dream of.

Your life becomes the sum of what you tolerate, so stop tolerating less than you desire.

This Is Your Reminder That You Are More Than Any Failure

Your past failures will always haunt you. They will make your life a horror story and paralyze you with fear every waking day. They can limit you, make you lose your hope in yourself and in the world. With their tiny yet powerful voices, they will tell you to stop going.

The voices of the ghosts of your past will always be loud and haunting, but how they will affect you solely depends on you. Will you entertain and welcome them into the doors of your thoughts or silence them before they can silence you?

Your failed resolutions, career, relationships, and dreams are all things of the past. Don’t let them weigh you down forever. Take them with you in the future only as lessons. You’ve got forever to go — many years still ahead of you.

Cry as much as you want and let your tears wash down all the labels your past failures marked all over your soul. Free yourself.

Never let anyone belittle you and define you for your past failures, especially yourself. Fake hope until it becomes real to you because one day, at the moment you least expect it, someone will see all of you and still see the potential.

Someone will see you past your failures. They will see you not as a hopeless project but a gem in the making. They will see the great future you’ve been failing to see for yourself — the future that’s been clouded by the mistakes you used to define and dictate you and your life.

It won’t be easy. Pity parties will always be inviting. But after you tire yourself from crying and seeing yourself short, get back up. Never give up on yourself. You owe yourself that.

When opportunities start to knock again at your door, leave whatever you’re doing and welcome them before your fears knock them over. You’re only a few steps away to be back in your game.

However, if you happen to fail again; remember that God is a God of never-ending chances. Don’t be afraid to humble yourself and take another chance He offers you today and will offer you always.

Don’t be too hard on yourself.

You are more than your failures.

Give yourself a chance to start again.

Don’t let your past limit you. 

8 Steps To Moving Forward In Life

Sometimes, it seems like no matter how hard you work, nothing much is changing within your life. That’s probably your ambitious and overly self-critical self in action. Gentleness and speaking to yourself with compassion are sometimes the only things missing to propel yourself to move forward.

1. Take little steps. Sometimes you’ll move forward three steps, and move back two times. 

I thought allowing myself to fall down and take little steps is lenient enough. No matter how much we try, things are going to happen which would do worse than making you fail.

Three steps forward and two steps back is still a step towards the right direction.

2. Celebrate each step. Celebrate the little things. 

When we do something we’re proud of, no matter how little it may seem, it deserves a celebration. We sometimes get sucked in this belief that when we do something, it should always be the legend that it’s supposed to be.

No writer sits down and knows for sure that their work will become a bestseller. No painter makes an artwork and knows for sure that their art will end up in a gallery or a museum.

They sit down in their studio and do the work. They toil every day without knowing how everything’s going to turn out. Celebrate each step you take in achieving your life goal. The only time you’ll ever jump on your journey to success is in the beginning, when you take your leap of faith. The rest will be baby steps. And those baby steps deserve nothing but praise and celebration.

3. Learn to celebrate on your own.

Sometimes, we even unconsciously ask someone else’s permission to be proud of ourselves. 

Some people are never going to be happy for you. In my short stay here on earth, I figured out that it’s just their insecurity that they’re mirroring to the world. I refuse to be sucked in that hole so I decided to somewhat snap out of it.

We should be free to be proud of ourselves and celebrate our little victories.

4. Look back occasionally and see how far you’ve come. 

Sometimes, it’s hard to appreciate our progress until we look back and see how far we’ve come.

Looking back occasionally is a great way to keep yourself grounded and to check if you’re still on the right path. Look back and see if you’re giving yourself less credit that you deserve.

5. Train yourself to avoid looking sideways.

Now that everyone posts everything on social media, it’s hard not to compare lives even for a bit. It’s all just harmless competition until you’re crippled with self-doubt and self-pity.

No one runs the same path in the marathon that is life. The only time when you are supposed to look sideways is to check if the person beside you is doing fine. We should be there to inspire and help one another. Life is too short for mindless competitions.

6. No one is a self-made man, and no one is an island. 

Accept that you cannot go through everything alone. Living just for yourself is pointless. If you can’t see yourself as part of a whole, then you might be lost.

Getting along and asking for help isn’t always easy, but sometimes, these things have to be done. Not only will they make things easier for you, but it’s also more fun to succeed if you’re taking people along with you.

7. You can’t have the same length of stride all throughout your journey.

Some days, you’ll have the motivation and energy to run towards your goal. Some days, you’re going to have walk slowly to get there. There are days when you have to absolutely stop altogether to rest. And that’s fine. You’re not in a race with anyone.

8. Keep your faith.

Life will never be easy. I think that’s simply how it should be. A difficult life is an epic life. And sometimes, there’s going to be too much of these emotional and mental baggage’s that it’s practically impossible to take another step, no matter how small it is.

The thing is, you’re going to be alone, and you’re going take on these life challenges alone for the most part. No matter how tight knit your family is. No matter how close you are with your friends. You’ll mostly walk through life alone.

The only one who can truly motivate and propel you to move forward is yourself. And your faith.

You Have To Make The Most Of The Chances Life Gives To You

We often get paralyzed in the concept of is this right? Should I wait? Is there anything better? Should I settle? How do I know if I am?

Chances are often given to us without much warning. Sometimes we’ve worked extremely hard to get to where we are. The blood, sweat, and tears turn into the golden moment we’ve been reaching for. We beam with pride, feeling as if we earned it. Sometimes, the chances are unexpected. Perhaps we were simply in the right place at the right time. Maybe a door opened to something we never honestly thought would be available to us. We are allowed to move towards something that could be great for us, and we are excited but uncertain if we should jump at the chance to take something we didn’t fight for every minute of the day. We recognize our luck. We question if it’s enough, or if we are allowed to take the moment and move forward without hesitation.

Regardless of either path that we are given, there are always the moments after that continue to keep us still. We fear we’ll screw things up. That we aren’t truly cut out for the chance after all. That perhaps we didn’t try hard enough to get here. That regardless of who we are or what we’ve done, there is still more we could’ve done to prepare.

And while we’re standing in this paradox of whether we deserve the chance or are ready for it, time slips between our fingers without pausing. The spotlight on us becomes dimmer, and not because we aren’t worth it- but because we aren’t doing anything with it. We blink. Suddenly, that opportunity has shifted away from us, moving towards someone with another set of hands waiting for the chance to hold it.

It makes sense, doesn’t it? If we sit back and think about it, how often do we actually have opportunities to let them slide away because we believe we could never deserve them? How often do we feel accomplished in receiving a chance, but then freeze once it’s given to us to mold and shape into what could be our destiny? Or at least the path we want to be on right now?

We know the difference between getting a chance because of being underhanded, sneaky, or dishonest. We know those moments aren’t truly meant for us or not in the ways we want them to be. We know that in some cases, we are given chances based on unfair or downright unacceptable things. We know these aren’t random “chances” life hands us, but a way to cheat ourselves into believing a fallacy of who we are. This isn’t about whether to take an opportunity that you were given based on dishonest reasoning or systems put in place to provide you with an advantage that you didn’t really earn.

This is about the moments in life where we are given something, and we decide that we aren’t capable or we aren’t enough to accept it. The ones you want to believe that something wonderful is happening for you, but you just feel too unsure of yourself to think you could really achieve anything, even when the universe seems to bring the perfect opening your way.

If there is one thing we have learned about life, is that it isn’t always fair. People get away with things they shouldn’t. Disasters show up that no one anticipated. Seemingly unbreakable bonds shatter without a moment’s notice. When something like this happens, we know we don’t have much of a choice in the outcomes. It’s possible that even if we try our hardest, things won’t play out in our favor. All we can do is take what we have and try to make the best out of circumstances, whether we were ready for them or not.

What if we did something similar when great things show up in our life? Instead of questioning if we deserve it or standing still worrying that we will mess things up if we realize that right now, we’ve been given a chance. Our only job is to do the best we can with it. That all we can do is make the most of it.

Is it possible that we make mistakes along the way? Absolutely. Could you find later that you want to go after something different? Sure. Yet there is only one thing for certain- if you don’t take the opportunity you’ve been given and actually try to do something with it, nothing will happen. You will make the mistake of letting something escape you because you were too terrified to do something.

Because who knows what could happen if you stop doubting yourself so much and lean into this? Who knows where it could lead? Perhaps it opens doors to something better later- maybe you discover your passion by merely taking a chance.

There are some things you should listen to- things like if your gut instinct tells you this is a wrong move, or if you know you’re walking into something that will only make you miserable. If you’re reluctantly embracing an opportunity because someone else really wants you to, or if it fulfills someone else’s dream idea, then you know that this isn’t something to move towards. You see the difference between debating something you genuinely want but are unsure you would do well in, and discussing whether to do something you know won’t make you happy simply to paint a picture of the person others think you should be.

When it comes to the moments where you know you want something or know something that could be great for you, but you hesitate because you’re afraid you’ll fail? Or that you aren’t worthy? These are the times you need to open your hands and trust that if you’re given this moment, the best thing you can do is do something with it to the best of your ability. You may not believe you’re ready for it, but perhaps where you are in life is precisely what is needed to do this. A sense of humility isn’t the worst thing in the world, and while you’re sitting there thinking someone else would do things better, maybe the world doesn’t need their perspective right now. It needs yours.

So the next time you are presented with a chance that you want or need, don’t dig your heels in and worry about whether this is the right moment for you. Recognize that this is your moment, whether you planned for it or you didn’t.

The only question is: what are you going to do with it?

21 signs and symptoms of a spiritual awakening.

Here are some signs that you’re going through a spiritual awakening or are about to embark on one:

  1. You feel disconnected or detached.

At first, the spiritual awakening process can feel overwhelming and confusing. It can feel like everything you thought to be true about your life was a lie, and as such, you may feel disconnected and detached from the things and people you used to enjoy.

2. You’ve reevaluated your beliefs.

A spiritual awakening will likely cause you to revise your spiritual beliefs or adopt significant new ones. Whether that means connecting deeply with a new religion or belief or quitting your job to pursue your real passion, your priorities are likely different now.

3.  Your dreams are more vivid.

Not only is your waking life more vivid as a result of a spiritual awakening, but your dream life may become more vivid too. The meanings of your dreams and how they connect to your journey may become more apparent as well.

4. You experience more synchronicities and déjà vu.

If you’re frequently experiencing mind-blowing synchronicities, like thinking about someone and randomly running into them the next day, or seeing angel numbers all the time, that’s a sign you’re on your spiritual path. Similarly, feelings of déjà vu aren’t uncommon either.

5. Your relationships may begin to shift.

There can be no doubt: Spiritual awakenings are transformative, and the people in your life won’t always be able to appreciate that. You may feel like your loved ones don’t understand you anymore because you are changing.

6. You feel spirituality becoming an important part of your life.

It will be hard to ignore the call from your spiritual side as you go through this process. The desire to find meaning and fulfillment within your spirituality will likely become one of your biggest priorities.

7. You’re more intuitive.

Another sign is having newly heightened intuition or new intuitive abilities showing up. They were always there, buried beneath the layers of your ego, and now that you’ve awakened, you feel much more in tune with yourself.

8. You can sense in-authenticity and manipulation.

In addition to that heightened intuition, you’ll be able to sense any inauthentic or manipulative behavior when someone is deceiving you, as well.

9. You realize everyone is on their own path.

As you figure out your own spiritual path, you also become more accepting of the idea that everyone else is on their own unique path, too. Things like winning arguments or convincing people of your views don’t matter as much anymore.

10. You want to be of service.

As you begin “realizing that every living thing is inherently worthy and equal,” you will feel called to be of service, whether to people, to animals, or to the environment. It’s important to you that you have a cause you can get behind to make your life feel purposeful. It may not be about changing your current roles or jobs, but just approaching what you’re already doing with a deeper sense of service.

11. Your teachers find you.

During an awakening, your spiritual teachers may “appear everywhere with perfect timing to help you.” These don’t have to be literal teachers: They might be a kind stranger in the store, a new friend you met by chance, or a literal spiritual or religious figure.

12. You feel alone.

Spiritual awakenings are no easy undertaking, and while there’s hope for enlightenment on the other side, it can feel very lonely. It’s isolating to have your whole life flipped upside down, especially if the other people in your life aren’t quite on the same wave.

13. You feel more connected to the natural world.

While you may feel less connected to friends and family at first, you will feel more connected to nature. From plants to animals to the world as a whole, you will sense your interconnectedness to it all, and it may be quite moving.

14. Your senses are heightened.

Senses will often become heightened during spiritual awakenings, as you become more tuned in to the present moment. This includes sensitivity to physical, emotional, and/or energetic stimuli.

15. You may have more bodily sensations.

Along with heightened awareness and senses, you may have other bodily sensations too. Sleep disturbances are not uncommon.

16. You may have physical symptoms.

A number of physical symptoms can accompany spiritual awakenings too like fatigue and brain fog. (Though of course, these symptoms could also be a sign of a medical condition, so don’t necessarily write them off as nothing.)

17. There’s a sudden change in your habits and routine.

As your spiritual life begins to transform, so will your day-to-day life, including habits and routines. Perhaps now you make it a priority to spend time in nature or meditate, or you’ve ditched old habits that were no longer serving you.

18. Your outlook on the world feels different.

Again, spiritual awakenings aren’t easy, and the alienation and ego-shattering realizations that occur can make anyone feel like they are living in a new reality.

19. Increased empathy.

As you begin feeling more connected to the world around you, you’ll also have increased empathy regarding the suffering of others. The prevalence of suffering may feel impossible to ignore, hence why you now feel more called to be of service.

20. You display more compassion.

On top of feeling more empathetic, those going through spiritual awakenings likely can feel more compassionate toward others—while still wanting to hold them accountable.

21. You have a newfound curiosity.

And lastly, now that you’ve “awakened” to your life, you probably have a childlike wonder and curiosity for the world around you, even when things get tough. Being able to stay curious about your life and the people in it, even when you’re feeling emotional, is a sign of a spiritual awakening.

The process and stages of awakening:

You could say the actual “spiritual awakening” is just the first step on the long path to enlightenment. Indeed, the initial awakening may happen in just a moment, but the process has many stages, which are as follows:

  1. The spiritual awakening.

This is the beginning of your spiritual journey, as you start to question everything you once knew. You begin to clear certain things out of your life (habits, relationships, old belief systems) and invite new, more enriching things in. You may feel like something is missing, but you haven’t quite figured it out yet. During this phase, it’s common to feel lost, confused, and down.

2. The dark night of the soul.

The second stage of a spiritual awakening is kind of what it sounds like: a very rough patch—the lowest patch, in fact. In many ways, this is when your soul is re-calibrating, stripping away all aspects of the ego. It’s very challenging, but once you hit rock bottom, there’s nowhere to go but up—forcing you to make a real change.

3. The sponge.

Once you’ve made it through your dark night of the soul, you’re ready to begin creating your new and improved, “awake” life. In the third phase, it’s all about trying things on for size and exploring. You begin branching out, trying different hobbies, religions, relationships, etc., as you figure out what meshes with your spirit.

4. The satoru self.

Satori is a Japanese Buddhist term for awakening or “comprehension,” derived from the Japanese verb satoru. In the Zen Buddhist tradition, it refers to kenshō, or “seeing into one’s true nature.” In this phase, you begin to not only recognize, but honor and embody, your true nature through your gifts, skills, and talents.

5. The soul sessions.

Think you’ve reached enlightenment yet? Not quite. The fifth stage, is referred to as the “soul sessions,” can take some time. You’re building the actual structure in your life through which your true spirit can thrive. This can take some trial and error and lots of different strategies. During this time (which can take years—even decades—BTW), your soul is growing and healing as you discover the routines and rituals that work for you.

6. The surrender.

The second-to-last step in the awakening process, surrendering is all about releasing any remaining structures, beliefs, or facets of the ego that are keeping you from your truth. By this point, you’ve gotten to know your soul, you’ve figured out a lifestyle that works for you, but there may still be people or habits that hold you back. This is where you will release them so you can fully step into your power.

7. Awareness and service.

And finally, we have awareness and service. This is full awareness of your own divinity in every moment, as you flow through life with grace and clarity. You live in service to others, which brings you great happiness and contentment.

How to make space for a spiritual awakening.

While it may not be easy, many would attest that spiritual awakenings are well worth the effort. So, if you want to make space in your life to start your spiritual journey, we need to slowly develop daily, weekly, or monthly spiritual practices (like meditation, mindfulness, and gratitude, for example).

In addition to that, find people you resonate with spiritually that you can talk to. You can look for books or podcasts about spirituality that resonate with you, as well.

“Practice self-love and compassion. Be gentle with yourself and trust the unfolding; all spiritual awakenings occur to guide us back into balance with our true self. Pay attention to your inner guide and intuitive nudges, as “they’re helping you harmonize and remove what no longer is authentic in your life.”

The bottom line.

Spiritual awakenings are complicated, profound, and nothing short of life-changing—in the best way. While they may not be easy, they will improve your life for the better with patience, trial and error, and a bit of time. If you find yourself in one, all there is to do is trust the process, hang on tight, and prepare for a newly awakened life.