Haven’t Dropped off the Face of the Planet: Millennial Struggles

I’m still here. I feel horrible that it’s been so long since I’ve written a blog post. No worries, I still love my blog and love engaging with my followers. Just busy battling all of lives “wonderful” (sarcasm) challenges.

I tend to forget that as a millennial, I’m part of the most stressed out generation ever! — in all of history. I forget until my husband reminds me and then I add it to my list of things to be stressed out about. I have a pretty good list going. I have found the best way to handle that stress is to focus on each minute of the day as it passes and to ignore the big picture. It doesn’t always work, but sometimes it does.

There’s these charts that they hand out to people when their unemployed and the chart has a line showing what you expect to happen with your career and it’s a perfect diagonal (always moving up the ladder and growing). Then there’s a wavy line that represents how your career will actually develop over time (the line shows growth and then drops down to the land of disappointment and keeps going up and down). Then there’s a shaded area between the two lines that says “This is why you drink.” (when the line drops down). It makes me laugh a little every time. It’s the truth about everything in life, not just the career world. Sadly for me I have headaches quite often and drinking alcohol is just asking for a migraine. And I also don’t think it’s the best idea for my stomach issues.

I’m really putting in my best effort to remove the stressful aspects of my life, yet I’m not seeing any huge changes. I just have to patient, and I’m not.

I started sharing my story of having stomach issues with multiple people in my life and was surprised to find out how many people have gone through endoscopic exams from stomach issues similar to mine. Almost all of them tested positive for acid reflux (which is what my doctor thought I had). Many people I know get migraines and many have had stomach issues. It’s made me wonder… is this because we ate such horrible chemical based foods as kids? Our parents grew up eating healthier wholesome foods and then later started eating the packaged junk and feeding it to us. Now many older people are getting cancer, and adults my age struggle with migraines and acidic stomach problems. One chemical found in most food is finally being eliminated “partially hydrogenated oil.” It’s about time! They finally decided it’s not safe to eat. I eat healthier — more chemical free than just about everyone I know except for maybe 3 or 4 people. So I’m honestly not sure what’s wrong with me, but I won’t give up on figuring it out.

I believe in looking at holistic solutions, not just solving things with pills. So I know I will find a way to get better. It doesn’t make sense to me why people are so against holistic solutions. What is wrong with finding a more natural way to cure something? Doesn’t it make sense that what we put into our bodies effects how we feel and function on many different levels? I believe it’s best to be open to all the different solutions out there.

Maybe all the people my age are having migraines and stomach issues just due to millennials being more stressed. In my honest opinion it’s both.

What do you think?

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Can’t Catch A Break: Advice Please?

So here’s what’s happening in my life currently…

I’ve had stomach pain for a few months now. I’m trying everything under the sun to get rid of this stomach problem to avoid going through with this exam that’s going to eat up a good chunk of our savings. We have already spent a good chunk of money on other tests that needed to be done. And we haven’t been able add to our savings at all over the past 2 1/2 years, we have only been able to take from it. That takes away money that I may need for my business and money that we definitely need to afford the small weekend trip we want to take. We just wanted to take a small trip to a quaint little town a couple of hours away. This is a trip I planned to go on since the end of last summer. It’s a trip we’ve never taken before. I feel like we really need it!

I’m at a loss for what to do. All I can think is how can I make some cash quick! Any ideas? I can do writing for people, I can draw, Photoshop things, create simple graphics. I can do things outside of those specific talents as well.

I have one more week to try and fix this stomach issue before I go through with this procedure. Any ideas? I’m willing to try one more thing. So far I have taken Omeprazole, strong probiotics, acid reducer, and completely gave up coffee, chocolate, milk, all juices, and liquor (all my favorite things). I’ve also given up dairy for a week and gave up gluten for a week, and saw no change in my stomach issues. I tried lemon water and eating lots of veggies. This week I tried juicing a 1/2 cabbage and drinking it twice a day.  And yes it does taste nasty. Still not seeing any significant changes in my stomach pains. I also had a blood test, ultra-sound and a test for H.pylori. All came back negative. The doctor said I had gastritis, but it could be an ulcer. It also could be neither.

Any advice?????????? The test won’t be painful, but paying for it will be.

If The Earth Doesn’t Swallow Me Whole: Waiting on A Sign of Something Good to Come

I can keep my head above water when a lot of stressful and unfortunate things happen. I can because I’ve had a lot of practice. Except when one large piece is added, then all my positive feelings tumble down like a Jenga tower collapsing all the way down to the basetree-407256_1280.

I worry about myself, I do. At this point in my life with so many things going wrong I have a hard time really enjoying the happy moments. The moments I plan to keep me distracted from the bad stuff. The moments that usually cost money when I’m financially suffering. I have so many great friends and family to spend time with. I have to keep on planning fun activities, I can’t let the summer pass me by. I need to enjoy it.

Then I get angry with myself for not being able to let go of everything wrong and just let all the good moments flood in. I think about how much easier it would be for someone who is not a sensitive soul. And I start thinking: Why me? Why hasn’t my life gotten any easier when I’m so determined to be successful and follow my dreams? Every year I think, this is going to be the year when I’m happy in my career and doing great financially. And time keeps going by, weeks pass, months pass, and things never seem to look up.

I know I’m in a better place with a stronger self-esteem then ever before, but realizing the type of person I am and knowing that I need to embrace that person doesn’t make life that much easier. The truth is it’s difficult being me. I know there’s maybe a lot of people who think that. However, I really have a very complex personality, a sensitive soul, and past self issues that I can’t change and they make me the person I am today. If I didn’t have my husband, I wouldn’t have anything good or positive in my life. Just about all the good things in my life are because of him.

I don’t have the patience for a lot of things in life. I’m easily irritated when I leave home and forgot to grab something and have to drive 10 minutes back in the wrong direction. I forget little things that I remind myself to do in just a few minutes or less. Things like take dinner out of the freezer my husband reminds me of on the phone and I get off the phone and completely forget. I mean I remember important things related to technology, conversations, plans, and feeding the cats. Just not to do lists in my head. I don’t really like driving much at all. I can’t remember how to get places, and If I do I remember how to visually get there. I have to explain the visual directions on how to get somewhere to my husband to ask if that’s the right way. I think it’s because driving is too overwhelming for me. I also think because on a daily basis I have to deal with numerous thoughts and all the feelings associated with those thoughts, so driving and remembering little tasks doesn’t come easy to me. Maybe my brain is just operating and doing more than the average persons. Sometimes I just have bad anxiety about doing something annoying and/or tedious in my life.

I also can’t stand to have meaningless conversations with people over and over again. I was horrible at customer service and the worst waitress in the world. On top of that I can’t handle anything tedious for too long and to me customer service is tedious. To me tedious is anything where my creative brain is not being utilized at all. So it’s safe to say that most of my former bosses didn’t really like me, but the feeling was mutual. Even writing all day to me is tedious, drawing all day, creating graphics, and brainstorming creative ideas. They are all creative, but I get sick of just one creative task. I want to do all of them in one day. I need to keep switching tasks and I need to always be learning. I realized that more than ever when my last position I got bored after I finally learned everything there was to learn even with 4-6 different creative tasks a day. I am literally a born entrepreneur! Just like an Einstein or a Steve Jobs I think differently and don’t quite fit in.

I know there’s a lot of creative people out there and a lot of creative opportunities. The problem with me is I’m a born creative and desire creativity in every aspect of my life. That means I want to not only create things in my job, but also have a creative home, creative fashion, creative adventures, creative food, creative house, and so on. So I say it again, it is really difficult being me, and when I try to be anything but me I fail miserable in life.

Sometimes I just wonder if I’m going to be able to survive being me till I’m like 90. I know if something really tragic were to happen in my life it’s likely I will fall into a deep depression. (Am I already depressed for writing this?) But, maybe it’s me who’s not meant to live a whole life. Maybe the earth will open up and swallow me whole. I am religious and I do believe in God so that won’t be my choice. Sometimes I think death isn’t that scary, life is, and heaven will be great. Will the world be okay without me? or will I need a psychiatrist at some point? or will I get to follow my creative dreams and maybe be making riches beyond my wildest dreams?

I think all the time, I could do something amazing with my creative abilities if only I had the money to invest in some or all of my ideas. It takes money to make money, and I might have to try again at another job where I don’t belong just to get that money. I just really need to keep my self esteem from crashing.amazing-736885_1280

I know who I am and I really do just want to be me, but it’s really hard when things never seem to go my way.

I’m just not sure I believe the grass isn’t always greener on the other side, but I think I believe that one day something really good is going to happen in my life. And I’m praying for it. Just a sign of something good to come would be great!

I guess I feel better just pouring all my thoughts onto this blank page.

Inside Out Movie – Sounds about Right

I went to see the movie “Inside Out” on Tuesday and I just loved the idea of it. It seems kind of silly having 5 people in your head controlling all your emotions and planting ideas in your head. But, by the end of the movie I could totally imagine having 5 different people in control in my head.

If you haven’t seen it, the five different people are: Joy, Fear, Anger, Sadness, and Disgust. They have a control station and press buttons to take control of the girl, who’s head their in. They decide how she should feel and react at any given moment. There are also people who control memories, the unconscious, and even clear out thoughts to make room for new ones.

My husband and I both agreed that Disgust was probably usually in control in my head. Not to mean that I’m disgusted by a lot of things, but because I often don’t see things the way other people see them. I disagree with the way the world works. I don’t follow the status quo. Which I think, makes sense for disgust. Disgust has an attitude about everything. But then again, I don’t often show my attitude toward a lot of things. So, maybe not.

Anyway, when I was young I was very overwhelmed by all the emotions I had. I was very confused by my personality, and I would find myself struggling to decide how to handle different situations. People usually have a certain way of dealing with anger and pain that they stick to. But not me, I would sit there and debate whether I should cry, be angry, ignore the situation, or do something entirely different. In reference to the movie, it’s like the people in my head were arguing over the controls, or worse they were just taking a snooze making me completely freeze in my tracks. I couldn’t even decide if I wanted to be silently be angry, or openly share my anger with those who hurt me. I would often find myself dealing with each emotional situation differently even though the situations were not all that different.

Still today, I can see how it would make sense that people in my head are controlling how I feel. I can go from being completely happy to unhappy pretty quickly. Although, sometimes I feel like anger, sadness, disgust, and fear are all working together to drive me emotionally crazy! Lately, joy has take a backseat because of the stomach pain I haven’t been able to get rid of. But, I want to feel joy, I want to feel joy so badly it actually makes me angry. I try to feel joy.

Well, if you haven’t seen the movie yet I recommend checking it out. I really enjoyed it. I might even buy a copy when it comes to DVD.

The Powerful INFJ’s

We see the world in a different way. That doesn’t make us weak, it actually makes us powerful. We’re more capable of creating change. As Steve Jobs said, “Think Different.” We don’t have to even try to think different, we do by nature. I see myself as an innovator. A creative and free spirited person.

Some days I feel like I can conquer the world, and other days I feel discouraged by people’s need to put me in a box and treat me as if I’m just like everyone else. I’m sure to most people I’m just an average person because I don’t show all my colors to the world. I don’t stand out in a crowded room. I’m humble, and I don’t like to talk too highly of myself. I also keep all my deep emotions mostly to myself. And still once in awhile it’s just painful to be so different.

Being an INFJ is one of the few things that is extremely unique about me. INFJ’s are less than 2% of the population. If there’s so few of us, isn’t that a sign that were suppose to be more and do more? Instead of being treated as if there’s something wrong with us, shouldn’t people all around us be encouraging us to follow our dreams and create change?

We can be powerful, if we believe in ourselves, if we turn off all the voices judging us, if we keep reminding ourselves that being different is a gift. We are capable of so much more than the world is going to give us credit for. We can make our own choices though. We build the world in our heads. We have to stop our fears by reminding ourselves that we can be more successful than others due our INFJ qualities. Because we see things differently. We are more determined.

All we have to do is find our passions and dive down deep into them. Let our passions take over us and guide us on our life journey. There’s so few of us, which is why it’s important that we help each other to not get pushed down and trampled on by others and the weight of the world. The world is a better place with more INFJ’s following their dreams, because they, we, in fact can create change in the world.

It’s Never Too Late To Apologize

Just the simple little words “I’m sorry” can be incredibly powerful to the person who receives them. Yet, some people don’t even know how to say them. I’ve experienced first hand relationships absent of those simple words. One person believes they are right about most things, and just brushes off the things they are wrong about as if they are no big deal. Never even thinking how it may affect the other person. The other person doesn’t apologize for the things they do wrong, because that would be unfair. It wouldn’t be balanced. Yet, the scale is already tipped by the person who always thinks they are right about everything. Anger erupts and quite possibly resentment.

But, the only thing that is needed is a simple understanding that were all not perfect, and we all make mistakes. I apologize in my relationships, and then the problem vanishes into thin air. POOF! Right before things get blown out of proportion. The person receiving the apology quickly forgives and forgets. When both parties can apologize right away, every time, a strong bond is created, and over time it grows. There’s a mutual understanding that we both make mistakes, quite possibly just as many. And although we are imperfect, we can view ourselves as perfect. Our ability to apologize removes our imperfections. We can easily accept the others apologies, because we know the same respect will be given when we make mistakes. We are then complete equals. Just as perfect and just as imperfect.

So Easy. Right? So, why is this so hard for people to do? Do people just have too much pride? Do people just like feeling in control of everything? Do people just like to view themselves as someone who knows more then others? I can’t say I would have an easy time apologizing to someone I don’t respect. But, by not being able to apologize to people you certainly don’t show them respect.

I also don’t agree with parents who think because they are the adult, they are superior, and therefore they don’t need to apologize when they mess up. By not apologizing to their kids when they mess up, they are teaching their kids the wrong lesson. A kid can learn a lot from a parents apology. They learn that even parents are not perfect, they mess up too. They learn to be more confident and independent because the parent shows they are not superior. They develop a respect for the adults in their life. They understand what is acceptable behavior for a parent, by the parent admitting they made a mistake. A parent is a role model.

When I was growing up, I was just taking notes on everything not to do when I became an adult or quite possibly a parent. I learned a great deal about what not to do. I never felt respected. In church the pastor said, “As role models for our kids we always think about how we treat each other in our marriage, so that our kids will know what is acceptable when they get married.”

I wish more people looked at it that way. I tested the murky waters of admitting I was hurt by something one of my parents did, and it’s been over a week with no apology. It’s still never too late to apologize. It shows respect.

Creating a more alert and energetic version of myself

It’s been almost two weeks since I’ve had a cup of coffee. It’s been rough. Except, I don’t even like coffee. At least not without some added flavors. And by added flavors I don’t mean cream and sugar, they don’t make the coffee better. I’m taking about chocolate, vanilla, caramel, hazelnut, mint, and so on…coffee-691464_1280

Even with eight hours of recommended sleep I’ve never been a person with much energy in the morning and even during the day. I used to drink mocha’s and other fancy coffee drinks just for the delicious flavors. Then one day I realized I couldn’t survive in the career world without a cup of coffee every morning. But, I didn’t want to drink the unhealthy sugar stuff. So, I started pouring myself a cup of black coffee and just cringed as I sipped it. I never thought cream or sugar made this dirt mixed with water beverage any better. Of course, I still had flavored coffee and fancy mocha’s once in awhile.

It’s been three years now that I’ve been a coffee drinker. I never wanted to be addicted, and I never thought I was until I had to give it up. I definitely thought I was addicted to the energy and better brain power it gave me. But, I didn’t expect to be addicted to it physically. When I first started drinking coffee I could barely get through a whole cup without becoming shaky and super hyper. Now I sit here staring at this computer screen and I find myself struggling to process words in my head. My motivation and brain power are down. I keep thinking about how much better my writing would be with coffee in my system. I keep losing my train of thought.

The first couple of days with coffee I had a migraine. It finally settled into a headache on the third day. It then finally faded to just head pressure on the fifth day. I have felt like a complete zombie in the morning even after eight hours of sleep. I find myself not only missing the energy, but also the feeling of sipping something hot in the morning. I used to persist on having coffee everyday. My husband, who drinks it because he likes the taste, didn’t understand this. He drinks it all the time and is somehow not addicted. Or so we think. I wanted it everyday for the energy, not because I felt ill physically. I never had headaches during the day even when I didn’t get coffee till noon, instead I just had a lot less energy.

I firmly believe in the power coffee has to stimulate better brain power. It helps with focusing, reducing stress, and creating more energy, all leading to more success in life.

Coffee creates a better version of myself, and I feel like a different person without it. I can’t wait till the day I can drink a cup of coffee again and go back to the person I loved more.

Handling Health Issues as a Highly Sensitive Person

I’ve been pretty lucky throughout my life when it comes to my health. I rarely get sick. When I do it’s usually a cold that doesn’t last more than a week. I’ve only had some form of the flu three times in my life, and that’s all within the last three years. I have had several injuries in my lifetime, and a good handful were definitely me being reckless.

I don’t handle pain really well. I never have. I know it’s natural to get sick every once in awhile, but to my emotions it’s like the apocalypse has come. My emotions tend to take control over my thoughts and I worry that I won’t get better. If I have to go to the doctor because I’m not sure why I’m in pain, I’m always concerned I’m going to be diagnosed with something life threatening. This scenario has only happened two or three times, but to me that’s too many.

Part of the problem is that I believe something bad is going to happen because I’ve been floating through life with barely any real illnesses. I worry my turn is coming. The second half of the problem is because I haven’t been sick a lot, I don’t know how to handle being seriously sick. To people who have had the flu multiple times it all seems quite normal, but to me it’s like the end of the world as we know it.

I know being highly sensitive there’s a good possibility that I probably feel pain more. I know for a fact I feel the pain more emotionally and mentally than other people, if not also physically. There are days when my mind will wonder into a very dark place, where I just don’t see the light at the end of the tunnel. I think deep down the thing that bothers me the most is how difficult life is already being highly sensitive. When I’m sick, it’s like, I can’t function even slightly at the same rate of everyone else. I do feel like life in general is more complicated for me because I’m highly sensitive. I don’t want to feel that way, but I do. Being sick and having to sit around and do nothing is the worst. I hate sitting in front of the TV for hours, and I don’t like relying on someone else to take care of me. I just end up angry at myself for getting sick in the first place.

I got the stomach flu for the first time at the end of March. It was one of the worst sicknesses I’ve ever had to endure. It did feel like the end of the world at times, and what’s worse is the pain didn’t completely go away. My husband tried to convince me that it would go away on it’s own, but it didn’t. A month later, I went to the doctor — all worried — and they told me I had gastritis. After two weeks of taking medicine for it, it didn’t get better. I went back again, they ran some tests and I received a different medication. The first time they didn’t tell me what foods or drinks to avoid. Now, all of a sudden I have to give up coffee, orange juice, and liquor. I have, and now I’m getting headaches from the lack of caffeine and my energy levels are low. I’ve never had any real energy without caffeine. My level of anger for getting sick in the first place, dealing with crumby doctors, and being in pain is increasing.

I worry about whether it will go away this time. I feel like being highly sensitive and having to deal with this is much more then I can handle for moving forward with my business. I just want to feel like my normal self again.

I keep thinking the world doesn’t understand. It’s hard enough just for me to be me without being sick.

No One Can change the way I see the world or myself anymore

I don’t think anyone can destroy or change my view on the world or my view on me. Quite possibly the two people who know me the best have the power to do so, but I trust and strongly believe they never will.

I’ve done a lot of reading about life, success, and happiness. I understand that my perceptions of the world are only my perceptions, not reality. I understand that I make mistakes in life, but my mistakes don’t define me. I understand that I was made perfectly, just the way I am.

When I spend time with my family it’s mostly for holidays and social gatherings. I enjoy their company as long as I know I can leave at any time. It truly bothers me that they only see the world through their own eyes and don’t quite understand that there is multiple ways of seeing it. I know the way I see the world is flawed at times, and I let myself be overcome by jealousy and judgement toward others. But, I know that the way I see things is shaped by my personality and my experiences. So, I try often to take a step back and judge whether I’m viewing a situation or person unfairly because I’m only thinking and feeling a certain way as a result of my own perceptions. I try to see the world from other people’s points of view.

I keep thinking someday, someday I will make them see the world differently. Someday, they will know who I am. They don’t know me, and the sad part is that they think they do. But, in order for them to know who I am, and how uniquely different I am from everyone else, they need to learn how to change their perceptions. How do you make someone understand that the way they see things is not reality? I really want to know!

How do you make someone understand what it means to by highly sensitive, when they never listened to your needs or bothered to care that you were different? Someday, I want them to know and understand. Someday I want them to stop judging me based on their own personality and experience. Someday, I want them to understand that they never showed me the respect I deserved. How do you talk to someone who doesn’t understand what it means to feel everything so deeply? How do you talk to someone who listens to you one minute, and within a day does the complete opposite of what they promised? Someone who looks at you as flawed, because they can’t understand why your needs are different from theirs. But, my flaws are not my personality, they are my gifts.

Being different is okay.

Why There’s a Problem with our Education Systems

I have constant recurring dreams that I have gone back to college or high school. I used to really hate these dreams, but now they no longer bother me.

I’m not entirely sure why I have this dream, but it is rarely a good dream. I end up either late to class or I forgot to do my homework. I dream of having to redo a year of school because I didn’t take some course I was supposed to take. I read this is a popular dream for people to have, but I don’t think I’m having these dreams for the same reason.

School was very difficult for me, and I understand now more then ever why it was so hard. I’m not entirely sure how schools can change, but I don’t believe they are set up correctly for introvert personality types and certainly not highly sensitive people. I daydreamed all the time because the crowded classrooms overwhelmed me. Constantly being around other people drained my energy. I hated being called on in class and having to talk in front of the whole classroom. The teachers always gave me hard time because I never spoke loud enough. I had one teacher in elementary school that I still remember to this day, because she always pointed out that I wasn’t paying attention in a room full of students. I tried and I tried in an effort to avoid the humiliation, but I still kept falling into a day dream losing sight of all reality. But, she was wrong for treating me that way, it was unfair for her to embarrass me for something I had so little control over. I felt like there was something wrong with me all the time, and now I know it’s the school systems that are wrong, and perhaps some of the teachers.board-361516_1280

I faced other problems with taking tests. I never could finish a test in the allocated time limit and often had to stay after class. Sometimes I would end up staying after into the next class. It was embarrassing at times, but I was committed to putting in my very best effort with each test.

I always struggled with Math, Science, and History. I had to study many long hours in order to get good grades. I wonder now if maybe it wasn’t what I was learning, but how I was learning it. I read a great article about being an entrepreneur and a kid told their parent, “Why do I have to memorize all this information for a test, if I’m just gong to dump it from my brain later?” I wouldn’t have a good response to that question even if it was my kid. Because I agree. I don’t entirely believe in tests. I also think people would learn a lot more about how to succeed in life if they learned how to operate a business – just like the article mentioned.

I’m friends with a bunch of teachers and I hear the stories about all the tests kids have to take now, and how they are losing their recess and free time to just play and release energy. I’m extremely upset by this! I honestly can’t imagine having a kid and having to accept the way schools are now. I read an article recently on the most productive workers and it said they take frequent breaks: 17 minutes for every 52 minutes of work. In the article it lists ways to waste time properly such as taking a walk, chatting with a colleague, taking a nap, surfing the net, daydreaming, and meditating. I started taking the advice in the article and incorporating more breaks into my working day and I did notice the difference that it made. If adults need these breaks, of course kids do.

I had all these dreams as a child about when I grew up. How I would find the right path for me, and how I would feel accepted, valued, and apart of something emotionally fulfilling. When I had to face the real world, I realized it was nothing like I imagined and nothing like my parents and teachers made the world out to be. It was all just one big struggle after another, with the exception of my happy marriage.

I think my dreams are a reminder that I’m no longer trapped by society’s systems that are not meant for people like me (introverted and highly sensitive type). And I don’t have to go back down that road ever again, I can make the choice not to. I don’t have to be a part of any classroom lecture, or any corporation again that will make me feel undervalued.

The future is my own.