Importance of Connectedness

Human beings are social creatures.

Alone time is good. Too much alone time can be dangerous. It’s important to connect with others and build relationships to create a healthy and happy life.

Life gets easier when you CREATE a support system. These can be people from school, a community club, sports team, family, friends, work etc. Life gets better when you surround yourself with people who make you feel good. That sense of connectedness can make all the difference. Connectedness and happiness are closely related.

When it feels like everything is falling apart, sometimes the quickest and easiest approach is to isolate and self medicate. That is the WORST thing you can do. Find the courage to reach out to others.

I know I’ve developed close bonds during different, unimaginable chapters in my life that I could’ve NEVER predicted. I assumed that my high school friends would be my only lifelong friends and I was completely fine with that. Until college happened, then ski team, then my study abroad experience, then my first job out of college, then AmeriCorps, then Toastmasters, then my next job, and other unforeseen events. My relationships with others are sacred and I am sure to put effort into all of my relationships. I strongly believed that they saved my life. Funny enough, I never even looked for a romantic relationship. I never felt that void because of the incredible people in my life. Then, I unexpectedly met someone. I love my life partner and I now couldn’t imagine my life without him.

The point is, that no matter what is happening in life, spending time with others is the best thing you can do. That’s the ultimate medication. The times when you want to isolate the most are the times when you need to launch yourself into a social situation. From experience, I know this to be true.

A Long Life Is Not A Guarantee

Life is precious. Life is unpredictable. Life is unfair. Life is beautiful.

A few days ago my best friend of 25 years was in a serious car accident. Her car flipped over onto the opposite side of the highway. She was stuck in the car, upside down. There were a group of heroes who stopped their cars and helped her crawl out of the window. She was rushed to the hospital. She is okay. I believe she has guardian angels.

When I think about life, the first thing that comes to mind are all the extraordinary people in my life. Then, I ponder what my life would look like without certain people in it. It just wouldn’t be the same. I wouldn’t be the same.

Life can be scary because death is a part of life. At my young age, I think about the future moments that I will have with all of my wonderful friends. I can’t envision my future without them. I feel like I shouldn’t have to. Even though it is not worth the emotional energy thinking about life without certain peers, it allows me to appreciate them even more. Day after day, I am grateful for the people in my life.

I have grown up with this friend. We talk about anything and everything. We are there for each other through it all and always will be. She is a remarkable human being. The thought of losing her makes my stomach turn and I truly couldn’t imagine my life without her. I’m so incredibly grateful that she’s okay. It makes me happy that we’ve chosen to have a rich friendship full of amazing experiences and this is another reminder as to why this needs to continue.

I never want it to take near death experiences for me to be reminded of how fragile life is. A long life is not a guarantee, but a beautiful, fun, creative, fulfilling, inspiring, purposeful, and loving life can be.

Stop Comparing Yourself to Others

Have you ever had a great day and felt good about yourself until you went on Facebook and your self-esteem took a hit? Have you noticed that everyone's life looks picture perfect on social media?

Most people don't post the various challenges they face everyday. I know I don't! Why would we? Unless someone is coping with a major loss, I rarely see negative or depressing posts on Facebook. Many of us post the very best pictures out of the hundreds we take. We post the vacation photos, fun outings with friends or our significant other, baby photos, wedding photos, new homes, proposals, new jobs, accomplishments, new cars, and other life milestones. It makes complete sense to do so!

This is where the comparison game begins. It's easy to compare ourselves to others and question our worth. We may even start to internally beat ourselves up. I've talked to many talented peers about how easy it is to feel 'not good enough' in society.

These may be some of the questions we ask.

"What am I even doing with my life? Everyone is so much further along than me."

"How come I don't have enough money to buy a home? I should by now!"

"I'm making way less money than my peers."

"Should I be getting married and having kids?"

"Everyone's life looks perfect!"

What's the point of internalizing everything and beating ourselves up? There isn't much point at all. We may even be wishing to have something that we don't want simply because of how perfectly it's being portrayed on social media. Thankfully, there are ways of changing our perspective of social media.

Understand that everyone wants different things.

We all make our own choices. However we are living our lives, we created it! Any of us can change our path simply by the decisions we make. I've spoken to peers in financial services who are making a ton of money but don't feel a sense of purpose. I've also talked to peers in social services who enjoy their rewarding job but don't make enough to pay the bills. It's hard to find the right balance. But, the point is, no one has it all. If it looks like someone does, it certainly isn't just because of the luxuries they have. If someone is living an incredible life, it is because of the perspective they have. I've met some of the poorest people who are by far some of the happiest people I've ever met. The traditional path may be for you, but it also may not be. It doesn't do us any good to compare ourselves to others because everyone is unique and everyone wants different things.

Use Facebook as a positivity outlet.

Could you imagine if Facebook was a depressing as the news? Life isn't fair and we learn about horrible events happening in the world everyday. Facebook can actually be a positivity outlet. I believe everyone is doing what they can to cope with life's tragedies and create a beautiful life. It's nice to be happy for other people and everything good that is happening in their lives. I have yet to meet someone who isn't facing any challenges. We all have some stressors in our lives. We have the ability to filter through the negativity and post only positive experiences on social media. It's actually quite remarkable. We can use social media as a positive resource in our lives if we allow ourselves to stop playing the comparison game.

No one has it all. It's all about perspective.

The only way that anyone can 'have it all' is by believing they do.

Never Too Late To Love

The world appears to be a frightening place. The news is worse than a horror movie. People are getting murdered. Natural disasters are destroying homes. People are getting sick. Lives are being ruined.

It’s scary to think, that I now fear friends and family members getting murdered the same amount as I fear them being diagnosed with cancer. How unfortunate to have to think that way. When people are being fed hatred, it leads to negative outcomes. Does anyone else feel helpless to stop the horror?

Should we just live in fear everyday? Should we change our lifestyle? Should we not leave the house? 

Is there a solution? Yes.

I believe, the solution is and always will be Love. You may ask - how can love creep into the lives of the people who are on a mission to kill? It may not. That doesn’t mean that we are helpless to do anything though.

People want to be loved. People want to feel supported and accepted. It’s hard to feel that way in today’s society and some people never will. They may give up before getting to that point and choose to do something unforgivable. However, anyone can CHOOSE to cultivate love and acceptance in their own life. Is that enough to save the entire world? No. Is it enough to change YOUR world? Yes.

To still find love and peace through the tragedies and hatred around us is true success and 100% worth it.

It Is Never Too Late To Love.

The Purposeful Challenger

Do you like to challenge yourself?

I am the creator of purposeful challenges every weekday with a variety of weekly themes, which result in feeling a sense of fulfillment at the end of each day. We watch inspirational videos that talk about how short life is and how we need to live out our dreams! How can we do that when we are so busy all the time? I created this channel to provide an outlet for people who want to make it happen.

This channel consists of 1-3 minute videos every weekday. Each day, there will be a new challenge for you! There are many benefits of trying new things everyday. You can have increased confidence, more appreciation for yourself and those around you. It has the ability to get you out of a rut, and you can start to see the beauty of life again. All challenges will generally take between 1-15 minutes of your time. This way, even if you’re working 12-hour days, there is still time to add something a little different to your day. This is an outlet for people who want to grow and feel a sense of fulfillment after each day.

"In the end it’s not the years in your life that count. It’s the life in your years." - Abraham Lincoln

We can CHOOSE how we are going to live each day of our lives. We CANNOT PREDICT when our last day on earth will be.

If you’re interested in developing your skills and having fun, check out my YouTube channel and grow with me!