Fight Hostility Created by Diversity

After traveling as much as I have you come to find how utterly indifferent Americans are to welcoming diversity. We call ourselves a melting pot because people from all over the globe congregate here. Whether seeking asylum from their motherland or simply looking for a fresh start in the magical land where everyone has equal rights & anything is possible. What’s truly amazing is how, despite the diversity provided here in the United States, people are completely oblivious to the fundamental principles involved in accepting others. We have more diversity than most countries & yet I feel we are in the most turmoil because of it. This does not have to be the case. There are three key steps I feel we must implement in order to reduce the hostility created by diversity.

  1. Observe (look, listen, learn)
  2. Process
  3. Act

In order to observe something you have to be fully engaged. Look with your eyes, what do you see? Listen with your ears, what do you hear? & most importantly of all, contemplate what you can learn from this. The first part of observation may seem the simplest, but I believe that in fact it is not. Too often people look & only see what is different: the color of a person’s skin for example. However, they fail to notice what is the same: it is still another living, breathing human with red blood flowing through his/her veins. Listening too is not so simple as it may appear. Once again too many people focus on the differences, for example a language barrier; forgetting that smile is the universal language everyone understands. & as when interacting with small children or the hearing impaired, hand signals combined with body language are often very effective means of communication.

In my opinion though, the most important part of observation is learning. Always consider what you can learn from what you witness. The more you understand someone/something the less frightening it will seem. I crossed paths with a very large moth last night. Now, I am no lepidopterist, & I will admit the initial sight of it caught me by surprise, but I didn’t let it scare me. Rather I approached it slowly. I took a few photos & later got on my computer & researched it. I did this to learn more about the creature, to better understand it & its purpose. The more you know, the easier it is to grasp that everyone & everything on this Earth serves a purpose, if for no other reason than to make our time on this block of rock floating through space significantly less boring. This is why is it important to take the time to study, research, & postpone judgement.

The next step is to process all this information. Consider all you have observed. What is different, what are the similarities, how can this benefit society. Does this person know or understand something you cannot? Can they help improve your life in some way? Maybe they are a biochemist who will one day develop the lifesaving medication you require to survive. Maybe they are an electrical engineer who wants to make your life easier by creating technology that is more user friendly & affordable. Maybe they are simply capable of cooking you the best meal you’ve ever had in your life or providing for your ears the most glorious music you’ve ever heard. Everyone serves a purpose, maybe it is to teach you a lesson like patience, but whatever their purpose is, you best believe they have one! So, before you judge, try to focus on these things. Find one positive attribute or search for a purpose you may be overlooking.

Once you have observed & processed, the only thing left to do is to act! Now while this may seem the most daunting task, truthfully, it is far from it! If you have put in the work to find out why this person exists, why they are crossing your path, what one positive thing they provide, how they are similar to you… Accepting them, embracing them, & even loving them will seem easy. ❤

PS here is the moth I ran into last night 🙂

Gypsy moth

Positive Perspective

Perspective is everything. A good friend said to me the other day “A grateful heart equals a happy life. Regardless of the situation. If you tell yourself what you’re thankful for you will see things in a different light.” He was absolutely right. I saw the movie Every Day today & while I don’t think it was the best movie ever it did make some valid points. The world appears different through everyone’s eyes & there are a lot of different eyes on this planet. Some brown, some blue, some green, some blind, most in pairs, but some not. The world appears different to every one as do all situations. You may look at your meal & think hmmm that’s not what I really wanted or it isn’t cooked properly, while someone else would just be grateful to have something to eat. Don’t take for granted the things u do have no matter how insignificant they may seem. Gratitude is key to a positive mindset, & positivity is the key to happiness. So find ONE thing to be grateful for & you’ll be on the right track ❤ 

WHAT HOLDS ME BACK?

LIVING IN FEAR

I put up a brave façade, but on the inside I’m a coward. I am confident in many things, but not those that matter most. My confidence centers primarily on superficial matters.

I am, & have always been, comfortable with my appearance. I joke that I am “100% genuine, all original parts,” & for the most part that is true. I can admit I am a high maintenance girl. I love to put on makeup & dress up to go out. Yet, I am comfortable enough with my natural self that I walk around daily with my hair in a bun, no makeup on, rocking a t-shirt. Point being, I have no issue with my appearance & I have never contemplated plastic surgery or otherwise redesigning my body. I do love to decorate it though with tattoos & piercings, however, I do not consider this a true body transformation.

I am also brave when it comes to activities I do for fun. I am borderline daredevil material. I have tried everything from skydiving to scuba diving, riding every rollercoaster I encounter, traveling abroad alone, riding horses, & so on. I crave adrenaline rushes! I am all about trying new & exciting things.

This is all fine & great, but there is still something holding me back. Based on the previous information, most wouldn’t peg me as a scaredy cat, but that is exactly what I am; a person who lives in fear.

I am afraid I will fail in my future endeavors. I have toyed with copious ideas over the years regarding what career path I should choose for my life & I never seem to find peace. Everything I consider feels like a cop out for not writing. I have dreamed of making a living off my writing for years. Working on my own schedule from my computer in whatever remote location I so desire. Yet, I have always been terrified of putting myself out there. With many jobs the focus is not centered on you, it is about the work you do. Doctors get praise for saving lives, construction workers for building things, architects for designing, secretaries for assisting, etc. Most careers exist to make people’s lives easier in some way shape or form. They provide some service or produce a tangible object of some sort. Writing isn’t like that.

Writing differs from a typical job because it is an art form. Any artist, regardless if they are in the performing arts, studio artistry, or creative writing, understands what it means to put themselves out there & be exposed to high volumes of criticism. Whether you have 5 followers, 5 thousand, or 5 million, your fans & haters are watching what you do. Sure there are people who will love what you do & be supportive, but “haters gone hate.” No matter how many fans you gain, there will always be people that try to tear you down. The fact of the matter is it’s easier to pull someone off a table than it is to pull someone up on it. Especially if the foundation of that table is unsteady. I am the person standing on the table & my ego is the shaky foundation. It is already extremely fragile & unstable. The simplest remark can topple me off that table. People say, “You shouldn’t care; other people’s opinions shouldn’t matter to you,” & while that may be true, to be honest those words aren’t very realistic to me. No matter how hard I try to release my insecurities, I can’t. I’m scared to put my writing out there because I feel like people’s opinion of my writing is a direct judgement on me as a person. Particularly since the vast majority of my writing is extremely personal. I know this fear is irrational to many people, but it is crippling to me. Everyone is tortured by the fear of something & this is what affects me most. This & clowns, which are the demons that crawled out of the drain holes to hell.

So what are your thoughts? Share with me your fears & how you deal with them. I am open to advice, so shoot me a comment or email (visit my contact page) with your suggestions on how to let go of this terror that is strangling me, preventing me from pursuing my dreams. Share your recommendations on this subject & let’s help eachother out!

PS I hope to gain the courage to start posting some of my better, albeit more personal writing to my site soon so stay vigilant! 🙂