Recently, a few people have told me that I'm a great writer. In the sense that my posts are articulate and well written. I laugh because they have no idea how terrible I think I am at this. In school, writing was my worst subject. I didn't like it, it didn't come easy, and I always did poorly on papers. So naturally I'm shocked when people actually enjoy what's coming out of my head and on paper. I've written blog posts that I've deleted because of how terribly written I felt they were. It's funny how we tend to be our own worst enemies, huh?

Your insecurities will follow you wherever you go, until you're ready to let them go. Until you are ready to understand why they are there, and understand why you no longer need to feel that way. See, my insecurities about writing haven't vanished, regardless of living half way across the world in Hawaii or halfway across the world in Greece. My self worth hasn't increased from moving from one place to another. I don't find myself more beautiful or "better" than I found myself 5 years ago sitting in my small bedroom in New York.

Honestly? I think that maybe I had this image that if I up and moved to Hawaii, I'd find true happiness. I'd find nothing but love for myself and everything would fall into place. I saw the photos, I felt the feeling. It was a good plan in my head. Yeah, nope. You can up and run and live in the most beautiful places in the world and still feel empty. Trust me. Don't get me wrong, I truly loved every minute spent in Hawaii and am incredibly grateful for the growth I experience while living there. This growth, however, didn't come from location, it came from within.

ATTACHMENT

Attachment has always been a huge part of my life. Especially as I grew. I would completely attach myself to people, places and things for happiness. At the time I didn't see anything wrong with attachment or dependency on outside sources. Yet at the same time, I didn't realize how much I depended on things outside of myself to nourish me. I didn't realize how broken I was on the inside. I don't think I wanted to realize. So I focused on ways these "things" could fulfill me. Drinking, my friends, my boyfriend. When it came time to be alone in my room, I couldn't stand it. I couldn't stand myself.

The reason many people in our society are miserable, sick and highly stressed is because of an unhealthy attachment to things they have no control over.

Attachment is scary, because when you lose the things you're attached to, you feel like you're losing yourself. Partly because you are. But it's not a bad thing. When we attach ourselves to items, people, places, we lose everything that makes that place, person or item special. We begin needing it, depending on it, taking advantage of it. No longer appreciating it for its presence in our life, more so doing anything in our power to keep it for our own selfish reasons. It's survival. It's because we feel that we "can't" lose it. It's similar I imagine to an addiction. It's nourishing us, it's filling that void, so when it's gone, we feel this emptiness. And the emptiness manifests as fear, pain, depression, anxiety. What I have learned is that we are bound to lose these people and things. We are bound to change places. Change is inevitable. We cannot hold on to these things forever.

Happiness is not preventing those losses. It’s learning to adapt to them. It’s not the people and objects that fulfill the needs in my life that make me happy. I make me happy. And if those objects were all taken away, while I would mourn their loss, I would find new people and new objects, new activities and new passions, and build a new identity for myself, and live on.

For me, it takes a lot of soul searching. It takes a lot of "letting go." A lot of "me" time. (Notice the present tense - I am still working on it, everyday.) Doing the things that make my soul happy. And as I learn to just "be" with this emptiness I feel at times and allow it to completely take over, I find pain, yes, but the pain never lasts forever. There comes a time when you will find the inner strength, joy and peace which always burns out the pain.

Peace comes from within. Do not seek it without.

Something that always, always, always brings me out of a funk is exercising the body or the mind. Going for a walk, bike ride, lifting weights, doing yoga, reading, writing. I build myself up mentally and physically, because as long as I have a solid foundation, I am strong. Mentally & physically. I can handle "life." Build a strong foundation filled with happiness and joy from within and share that with the world. There's nothing we can't handle when have a strong core to fall back on.

Often times in life all it takes is a positive shift within yourself that will not only strengthen you and affect your life greatly, but will affect all of the lives around you. It will affect your relationships, your happiness, your self image and self worth. It'll affect your job, your family and your friends positively.

And now when those special opportunities, places, people, things come into our lives, we don't attach to them. We don't depend on them. We just love and appreciate them for what they are. We develop a healthy relationship based on appreciation and openness rather than need and attachment. They will just be a plus. The best plus, though. You will love them better because the love comes from deep within yourself. 

Very little is needed to make a happy life; it is all within yourself, in your way of thinking.