02:45

In just under 24 hours I will be seeing the beginning of a new year. The beginning of new hopes and dreams, the start of an endless number of resolutions to be broken by February. The ambitious hoard of middle aged men and women flocking to the gym in the hopes to get into shape, the empty diary abandoned by January’s end, the new bicycle used once or twice before joining the pile of other unused new year splurges.

I have never made new year resolutions, why you ask? The new year is a time where society insists that each individual makes a change. It is a time in which individuals muster up the courage to take a stand and alter their life for the better. I never understood why there had to be a certain time for this. Change can occur at any given point in time if the individual tries hard enough.

I resolve to change all through the year. If you want to bring about a change, what is stopping you? Why have you not made that first step yet? Take it. Yes, it may be scary. Yes, it may be difficult. Yes, you may not like it at first and attempt to revert back to old ways. Nevertheless, push through and persevere! Change can happen at any time if you want it enough.

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01:37

Birthdays are a funny thing. To remember and celebrate the day that you came into the world, to rejoice at your birth, to honour the day of your coming into the world and the years which you have lived.

To have a birthday is to celebrate another milestone. It is to reach a set point in time where you come of a certain age, a number of years since you were brought into the world. As you get older birthdays may get less significant. Parties become a thing of the past, presents become scarce and genuine birthday wishes from friends and family transform into emails or Facebook messages.

One of my good friends turned 22 years old yesterday yet she didn’t want to make a big fuss out of it, opting for a dinner with friends. Another friend sticks to his mantra of ‘Age is only a number’ and this rings true. What does it matter how many years you have lived? Does a number define a person? An 80 year old can have the life of a 20 year old whilst a teenager can live one of fully fledged adult. What you make of your life is up to you, not the number which gets a plus one after reaching a check point every year!

00:11

Why is that we are curious about the reasoning behind things? Why do we ask why?

Rewind back to a natural disaster and the media surrounding the event is filled with thought-provoking articles with topics such as ‘why do bad things happen to good people?’. Why is society so focused on the reasons behind something happening? Is there really an answer to all of life’s questions?

I often find myself wondering about why events happen: why I only got a C on an university essay, why I got splashed by a car while walking home, why I tripped up on my words during my solo presentation. It is in the midst of these thoughts that hatred and self-loathing arise. Where external reasons do not fully satisfy the question of why, we turn to ourselves. We analyse our every thought and decision which led up to an event, resulting in ‘I could have done that differently’ or ‘Why am I so stupid? Why did I do that?’. It is these thoughts which are unhealthy. It is this curiosity that dampens our spirits and covers us in gloom.

Don’t get me wrong, curiosity is great. Wonderful, in fact. However, it is only beneficial in the right context. Why do we make mistakes? Simply because we are human and no one person is perfect.

22:46

J.K. Rowling – Harry Potter And The Philosopher’s Stone

I am currently reading through the Harry Potter series as I never managed to get round to reading them in my teenage years. There’s something about getting into a series of books that is exciting and thrilling. To know that a set of books is loved worldwide by people of all ages is a recommendation in itself.

At present I am close to finishing the first of the series and I am really enjoying the read. There are times in which I wish I had read the books before watching the films so I could imagine the intricately described scenes myself, but there is always room to imagine.

02:11

Today feels like a day to be thankful. Of course every day should be a day to be thankful, a day to appreciate everything we have been given, for the smooth passing of another 24 hours.

We often find that we overlook the little things in life. We become comfortable with the possessions that we own and seek to obtain more in the hope that it will bring us happiness. We are never fully content with the things we already own. How much more do we need before we are truly happy?

Nonetheless, whatever we have, no matter how vast or minute, we need to remember that it means everything to someone who has nothing. Someone truly in need may look at our lives and wish they were in our shoes. Take the time to be thankful today!

03:26

Early mornings seem to be my most productive. They are the hours where I can conjure up essays and elaborate revision plans, and push through half a season of a drama. Early mornings are also the times when I confess some of my inner most secrets. My thoughts and feelings are set free in the morning, they roam the walls and paint the ceiling and are more openly expressed than in the day time.

I am a self confessed night owl, one who hunts at night and sleeps in the day. Late nights are used for deep chats and sharing. They are for exploring the crevices of my mind, setting free the thoughts that are enchained during the day, for loosening the wonders that are reigned back.

Nights and early mornings make everything seem more true, more real. Words spoken are genuine and true, they are soft yet honest. Though they are whispered, they shout the truth through unmasked words.

04:24

Have you ever thought about the way others see you? The way you talk and move, the facial expressions which give away your true emotions, the laughter that erupts when something is truly hilarious. The quirks and habits that come naturally to you so you don’t notice until another points them out – twirling of hair, pinky sticking out whilst drinking tea, the subtle blush on hearing a compliment, gazing into space when deep in thought.

How incredible would it be to watch yourself from someone else’s eyes? To view yourself as a whole other person, someone who is living and breathing, one who is alive and feeling real emotions. To see yourself as someone you could be friends with, someone whose company you would enjoy, maybe someone whose personality glows when they speak.

Sadly, this is impossible. It is only through the interactions with others that you can find out things about yourself. Unless there is an individual who can tell you all the little things you do, someone who is close enough to tell you the truth without hurting you. A friend with which you can be the most honest version of you.

11:18

The sound of falling rain is calming, soothing, almost hypnotic. I have a skylight in my house above the stairs and whilst I lie in bed awake I can hear the patter of raindrops on the glass. I can hear the changes in the heaviness of rain and when it has stopped completely.

Hearing the sound of rain while I am safe and warm inside makes me grateful for a roof over my head, for the clothes on my back and the possessions that I own. To be outside in the rain is a whole different experience. It is not relaxing to be caught in a downpour, it is not soothing to be soaked from head to toe. In Edinburgh it rains long and hard, often for the entire day. As much as I dislike being caught in the rain, I think the tranquillity of listening to the rain falling weighs out the negatives.

01:25

Currently feeling sleepy, feeling a little drained from the few days of consistently being out and about. Sometimes I need a day or so to ‘recharge’ before heading out into public again. The act of looking and acting presentable in the midst of society is a pressure in itself. The way we behave is dictated by society’s norms and values, the words we speak are shaped by the words we hear on TV and the radio. Sometimes I like to be alone, to be quiet, to lose myself in a good book. I live for those quiet days in between the fun-filled people-facing ones, the days where you have time to stop and focus on yourself.

There are rises and falls of company however I like the lulls of stillness and prefer the gentle quietness of solitary.

“I’ve always envied people who sleep easily. Their brains must be cleaner, the floorboards of the skull well swept, all the little monsters closed up in a steamer trunk at the foot of the bed.”

David Benioff – City Of Thieves

02:21

I find I don’t sleep well because there are always thoughts swirling around my head. There is always something on my mind, something which I need to ponder and contemplate before my brain ‘switches off’. I wonder if I will ever be able to sweep these thoughts to one side and put my mind at rest.