The moment things started going downhill for me, I knew it was happening. I knew how to stop it, and I knew how much it would hurt me.
Doing the right thing, taking the right actions, and letting the wrong arrows of other peoples choices pierce through your heart in order to make the better choice rarely feels like it’s worth it until later.
I made a choice. I chose to do the right thing for the situation I was put in, but I also made a very active choice not to do the right thing for myself. I was tired of taking care of myself, and always looking at the bright side. I was tired of being nice to everyone else and receiving the shit end of the stick in return. I made an active choice to not go through the right process of grieving and pain and to let myself be bitter instead, because it felt better. All I knew that I wanted was temporary ease. I hadn’t felt like I had been able to be angry at God or people or circumstances previously because I always knew it wouldn’t be the right thing to do, and because I have always wanted to do the right thing for the longterm. This time, I was taking anger at full force. You fuck with me, you lose me and I didn’t care at all.
It’s amazing how fast anger can take hold of your thoughts, your lifestyle, your being. I felt pain at every turn. I saw words twist from helpful to detrimental in split seconds as they soar from one person’s mouth into my ears. I’ve never known myself to be as cruel as I felt or as careless as I was. I didn’t care about anyone else, and why would I? No one stood up for my character when I was being torn apart and for that I was angry. I didn’t want to care.
Anger puts this film over your eyes that causes every wonderful thing to look harmful. It changes every friend into a foe, and every light into fire. No one is safe.
If only I had chose to grieve, chose to deal with my anger, chose to silence my bitter thoughts. Had I, I wouldn’t have gotten to the point of contemplating death every moment of every day. I became defeated.
If you saw me, you would know. I could not stop the tears and I could not stop the pain; all I wanted was for it to end. I understand depression. I understand suicide. I understand pain.
There was a time I would have asked of a depressed friend to live, even only if it was for me. I now know I can never ask that of anybody. I cannot ask for someone to endure pain for my comfort, or live through terror for the “someday” that might come and be peaceful. I cannot ask for life of somebody else, I can only enter their space and give them everything I have to give. It’s crucial.
Depression is a hand, holding, crushing, dragging you into the depths of the earth, into the pit of despair, with no branches strong enough to break your fall and no comfort long enough to take a deep breath. Depression is a weight of a hundred horses treading on top of the canopy of blankets you try to hide under just to find a moment where your mind can be silent. Depression is… a venomous snake wrapped so tightly around your body you cannot breathe but with every pulse of your heartbeat you know it’s the end… Depression… is an ocean of breathtaking pain.
I see the world with that pain in my eyes, much in the same way I used to see it with beauty.
If you know how I feel then you know what I mean. Good things that happen don’t make up for what we see behind the wall we’re so desperately trying to build to keep the horde of pain and anger at bay. It’s terrifying to watch that wall being broken apart and running out of the strength to keep building. It’s almost as if you drop that wall and run as fast as you can to add distance before turning around and building again. It’s coming and you see it; you feel it… and then you make one mistake and it swarms around you from all sides; all you have left is a little tent to cry in.
If you know then you know. And if you don’t, now you do.
Today’s a bad day.
I can’t help but feel like everything I want is just out of reach. I knelt on the floor to look in a box, but instead found myself sobbing in my own arms. I can’t imagine getting up, it’s as if gravity is winning over my mind. Mentally, I don’t feel well enough to fight it; my soul is damaged by hurt and pain. How can I try to get up when even trying entails pushing against a ceiling that won’t budge?
What is wrong with me. It’s like I am trying to get this thing out of my head, this thing that is killing me, this thing called pain.
Today’s a bad day.
I lay my head back on the floor with a Bible weighted against my chest, trying to find a moment of encouragement, but all I feel are questions that He knows I cannot answer. Who is even asking me? All I need is one moment of clarity. The kind of clarity that makes you feel better, not worse; that’s all I’m asking for, please. Instead, I feel defeated every step of the way.
I can’t get the tears to stop soaking my face and I keep trying because if they get in my hair it’s gonna make my hair wet. I don’t want one more annoyance right now.
Today’s a bad day.
I’m supposed to be getting up, I need to get ready for my night. If I don’t go out I’m going to regret it, but for some reason I still can’t pick myself up. The tears seem to flow harder every time that I try. My hair is definitely wet.
I’m trying to text people for help, but no one is around. Aren’t I supposed to be having a good day? I’m trying to keep the happy times I’ve just had in mind but somehow that only makes me cry harder because I want those happy times to stay.
What the fuck is wrong with me.
I want to leave the country every day. I want to be somewhere that my pain is not, but the problem is that I can never outrun myself. It’s sad that I even want to do that. If it’s internal I should be able to fix it, right? I should be able to just tell it to shut up and it should leave me alone because it’s my own pain, right? I should be able to fix it.. why won’t you just stop torturing me.. Pain, please go away.
Today’s a bad, bad day. I could never wish it on anyone.
I have done so many things in 2018.
I started the year by opening a restaurant with one of my favorite people. Led by the most heartbreaking betrayal of my entire life. I left the state, then the country, followed by my niceties, my positivity and my trust. I said, “fuck you” to the world for being so unkind to me, and I started checking things off my bucket list.
- London… Royal Tunbridge Wells… Edinburgh… Dublin… Bogotá…
- I got my motorcycle license and bike (thank you, Christian).
- I got halfway through writing my own book.
- I started learning guitar.
- I learned how to do spray paint art.
- I flew to other states; sometimes for one show, one person, or one night.
Nothing that I did could help the aching feeling I had. I lost all hope. I couldn’t get off my floor. I was at the airport every week. I couldn’t breathe. I couldn’t find peace. Nothing made me happy. Every good thing was too late. Life was too hard. Running was too hard. Staying still was defeating. I didn’t think I would make it one more step. I ran out of tears. I ran out of pain. I ran out of feelings.
I was numb.
From looking at all the things that I did, it looks like I had a good year; flying all over the world, accomplishing goals and meeting new people. I can tell you I don’t give a shit about any of it; from my point of view, it was the hardest year of my life. Although the trips were good, and I have memories that I will keep with me forever, in my personal life I’ve never felt more alone and I’ve never felt more defeated. I was mentally at my end. Five months ago, I couldn’t even hold a conversation because my mind would go blank the moment I tried to think words. Today, I can finally write about my feelings. It’s insane to me that I went through what I did. Life can change in a moment, and sometimes there is nothing you can do to prepare for it.
I got very angry at a lot of people; for good reason. I reached out to people for help every step of the way and got shut down by 80 percent of them. If I let those statistics be my ground for trusting people, I would never trust again. My anger was affecting every good emotion I had left. Soon, I had nothing but anger and pain mixed with my numbness.
I am still dealing with my anger, my pain, and my numbness. I may not always have the kindest responses and I may still burn with anger inside at the smallest things. That’s what anger does, it kills you from the inside out. If you let it keep growing, it will eventually take over every bit of you until you are only bitter.
I’m on the upside. I am learning to stop and breathe instead of letting the anger continue. It still hurts and it still feels good to let that anger out, but I am choosing to kill it with kindness once again.
In case you see me around, remember to be kind to me as I am still getting through this. You never know when people are really hurting inside.
P.S. Thank you to everyone who took me in, fed me, kept an eye on me, and loved me in the days I couldn’t love myself.
I feel like I’m falling apart. The words I want to scream are, “Somebody help me!”
Why is life so hard? Why do I feel like I can’t get through one traumatic experience before another one starts? I can’t keep going on like this; feeling this pain. When will I get better? I feel cracked in a thousand pieces and nothing relives the pain, it only temporarily holds the cracks together but not even long enough for me to take a deep breath before the change in my lungs causes them to be reopened. Ahhhhhhhhh. I feel a billion needles in my heart, not enough to kill me but enough to cause a panic through my body that slumps me to my knees. Thank god I’m not in public. The pain becomes too much for me sometimes, and the fear of falling on my face is more real than you can imagine. I often wonder if my arms will even catch me when I crumble.
I can’t be the only one who feels this way, there have to be more people like me. I know they’re out there and I write this to you.
I want you to know that I am with you in your pain. That I feel every punch that you feel and every knife that you swallow. I can tell you that it gets better and that it’s worth it, but you know as much as I do and you know how bad those words hurt, so I won’t say it again. I don’t want you to die from the same pain I feel, because I’m pushing through it every day. I might not have any answers or solutions but what I do have is my life. With it, I plan to be the best friend that I can be and the best person in the darkest days. If it were easy, I would write you a handbook. Instead, I am writing you this; that I am still in process and I don’t know how it will turn out. There are days that keeping a smile on my face feels impossible.
The good news is… well I don’t know yet, but I’m gonna find it if there is something. I think that’s what keeps me walking through this; I have to know that if there is an upside to this, I will find it.
I know there is positive to everything and I will stand by my motto that everything happens for a reason. I do not doubt that my sorrow has a purpose, but sometimes I just wish I could be the dumbest person in the world and not have to go through any of this. It feels like the more you know, the more pain there is.
When you feel like there are more days than not that you are stuck in your pain, I want you to remember this:
- You still have your life.
- You’ve got so much to live for (and I’m telling this to myself as much as you), you can’t give up yet.
- Vulnerability is a strong suit, not a weakness.
Reach out. People want to be there for you if you let them (and if they won’t, screw them, I will.)
You don’t have to ever feel alone in your pain, even when that’s the only thing you do feel.
Hi everybody, welcome back to my blog.
Today I want to talk to you about how 2019 can be your year of breakthrough for the things you’ve been wanting to see happen in your life.
Let’s start off by getting a sheet of paper and titling it, “First Steps to Breakthrough.” Now, think for a moment of one of the things that you want to see breakthrough in this year, and write that in a bulletpoint on the left of the page. As you think about that thing, can you imagine what the first step to getting there might look like? When you think of it, write that on the left side of the page like this example:
- Acting career. First Step: Write out resume.
Below this, write out your second, third and forth steps in this process.
Second Step: Find a friend to photograph and video tape.
Third Step: Put together video reel.
Forth Step: Research talent managers and agencies.
Let’s call this process, “Four Steps to Starting Success.” Since breakthrough is a success no matter what type of breakthrough it is. You don’t need to continue on with steps 5-800 because starting really is the hardest part. Once you have the first four steps down, you should be able from there to continue on with the process and build your castle of breakthrough. Once you can see the foundation for your goals, the rest starts being built in your imagination and possibilities you never thought of start coming to your mind. Sometimes when we create a long list of things we have to do, we easily get stressed out over the entirety of it and lose our motivation for even beginning the first step. Let’s not overwhelm our brains and cause anxiety over something that we can easily do given the right steps and the right headspace.
Having the right headspace for beginning 2019 in a way that has you believing that everything is possible (heck, you can even change genders now) is very important. Learning to let the anxiety and previous hardships melt to the foreground while your main focus becomes clear and precise, is not an easy thing to do! Eventually it becomes habitual, but to start off without knowing how to separate your feelings from your present moment of life can feel overwhelming and hard to process how you will ever start what you’ve been dying inside to do.
To learn more about shifting your perspective for a clear mind, I suggest you start by paying attention to your thought process. What you think about often becomes your reality. It’s hard to be upset all the time when your thought life is consistently telling you that things are okay and that you are not the things that happen to you. Once you start to grasp hold of how your mind thinks towards the information it’s been given, shifting that process to allow for a clearer mind becomes easier.
As you finish the steps to each of your goals, you get to cross off the ones you’ve completed! What a victory that is, to see yourself on your way to getting the desires of your heart fulfilled this year. There’s nothing hard about completing one step, and after that, one more, and one more and so on. The part that gets us all caught up about the goals that we have is thinking of doing all the steps at once. When we break down the beginning of that whole process, it doesn’t seem very difficult at all.
Welcome to the beginning of completing your goals for the rest of your life.
We go through life a lot of the time very unaware of our surroundings. Walking down the street or interacting with the cashier at the grocery store, we are generally just going through the motions and not acknowledging what is around us. People have feelings, and we ourselves have feelings. I’m not sure about you, but I don’t want to be 50yrs old and finally realizing that I haven’t been aware my whole life. I’m a generally aware person, paying attention to other people and their reactions and lifestyles, but I encounter a majority of people who are not aware of their surroundings at all. Why is that?
Everybody’s lives revolve in their own head; what they believe is their own life and experiences. We can’t assume that they are being rude when really they are only unaware of things around them. Is that selfish? Maybe. But how would they know any better if they don’t realize themselves that they are unaware? I think it takes an eye-opening experience to understand that you yourself are unaware. In the same way that people don’t know what pain really is until they have experienced it, and in the way that people don’t really know how to truly live until they know death. Not have died, but have experienced a death or a near death. Life is so unbelievably awesome and we don’t understand it until we experience it.
I want to bring to your attention that people who you think are being rude, may not actually think that’s what they are doing. Even this morning, at my hostel in Dublin, one of the people in my room got up at first light (5am) and proceeded to pack all of his stuff up in the center of the room, hitting the bed frames and not paying attention at all to how loud he was. Now, I thought about it for a little bit because I wasn’t sure if I should peak around my curtain and say, “Uhm, excuse me… are you serious right now?” But then I thought, ‘I don’t think this man is actually trying to be rude, I think he is genuinely unaware.’ And with that in mind I could smile and feel at peace and just wait it out.
Why does that make me feel any better? Because he doesn’t know. How can I possibly be mad at somebody who doesn’t know? Should people have common sense? Yes. But who am I to know how they have grown up and what their life experiences are? I got to look at it this way – I was awake early; more time to explore the city; and I got to have another moment practicing peace.
Life is uncomfortable, but learning peace in the discomfort can be an incredible experience. I’m not worried about losing two hours of sleep, because there is no point in being upset and something that happened. It happened, and now it is my goal to find peace in it.
I love getting to practice what I preach, it reminds me of the journey that I am on to always be better. When I am not growing in myself, I feel more dead than ever.
Growing, learning, experiencing life; all change who you are and the life you will continue to lead. Find peace in the moments that you could be frustrated in. Have grace for people who are unaware and understand that they need help in that area, just as you need help in another. We are all learning and growing in life, let’s be patient with where other people are at in their process.
With love, Makari Asriel
This has been a fun journey. Learning myself, loving myself, and choosing joy in the midst of finding wholeness and healing. Being aware of how I am feeling throughout my day to day and season to season has helped me be able to notice when things are off in my life; if my thoughts get out of control, if something was said or done that hurt my spirit or when something would affect my soul. When I am able to know all of that about myself, finding the issue and root cause of my problems is much simpler and allows me to change the situation.
Your spirit is affected by the atmosphere around you, so choosing the places you go and the people in your life is something you want to be aware of. Your soul is what’s affected when deep hurt happens, and when deep joy is created; between friends, family, relationships, and yourself. Broken trust and other deep hurts that cause you to feel misled or wounded will cut into your soul and begin to turn it bitter, whereas precious moments, pure love, and deep trust will fill your soul with greater capacity for love. Your body is affected by whether your spirit and soul have been violated, or whether they are being taken care of and loved. When you really start to learn your body’s responses, you will start to notice whether something has been put off in your soul or spirit, creating a response in your body that isn’t meant to be there.
Based on what I have done, I have some suggestions you could try:
Read. Read many many books. I sought out people who I have seen living wholehearted lives and I asked them what they did that inspired them to live in wholeness. They gave me 1 or 2 names of books or people that have inspired them, which I either got or researched. A lot of these books have challenges throughout them that I get to choose to do as I read them. I don’t like to just read through the book, I like to stop when I find something interesting and underline or circle it, then write down my thoughts next to the section. I also don’t borrow books because of this, I like to buy my own copy and that way I have it to look back on if I need to.
Pay attention to your actions. Be very aware of yourself in everything that you do. Notice how you respond in different situations, (you can even write it down if you process better through journaling) and look for patterns of how you respond. The better you know how you personally respond, the deeper you will get into knowing why you respond as you do so you can work on the root issue instead of just dealing with the symptoms.
Don’t be thoughtless with your words. Really try to understand what you are saying and the affect that it has, while also listening closely to what other people are saying. Words are power; so are thoughts. Be aware of what you allow in your mind and what you are making unknown agreements with. You want to have a powerful thought-life. People that are thoughtless with their words are going to be thoughtless with your heart.
Talk to yourself regularly. If you feel off, ask yourself why, what happened, or what you need. The more you talk to yourself, the more you will understand your being and narrow down if there is a problem in your spirit, soul, or body. Start to ask yourself really good, hard questions and learn the motivations behind your actions. You will begin to trust yourself much much more. Sometimes choosing the hard choice when it feels like the right choice is the best choice. Trust the ‘gut’ feeling you get, because that’s probably your spirit trying to tell you something.
Whatever you believe in, there are parts of you that you don’t understand and that affect different aspects of your being. Try this out, and see how it works for you. If anything, I hope to encourage you to go beyond what you know and find new aspects of yourself that may in fact change how you do life in the future.
The reason for this journey is freedom. Free from haunting thoughts and fear. Free from other peoples hold on your life. Free from judgement, control, and disillusionment. Free in ways you that you can’t believe is reality, but it is. There’s a better way to live. There’s a greater perspective to find, a deeper connection to have, and more authority to have over your life and the lives of the people you influence.
Love always and forever, Makarios
Not everything works out for me. That’s just not real life. I do have crazy awesome things happen in my life, but I also learn every single day how to live better with what I have. I read books with topics on self awareness, personality, connection, living in the present, and loving on purpose. I also have people in my life that are constantly keeping up with my feelings and telling me how I could be better. It’s more so how I choose to live than how my life is. Even with all the good; I have really bad days, I go through depression all too often, I get hurt, I get let down, I get pushed away, and along with experiencing close deaths and close rejection, I have needs and unfulfilled desires. Why wouldn’t I be honest about that? I have nothing to hide but my most personal encounters, and those are not hidden because of regret, but stored in my mind and journals as encounters of love and loss that are too precious to be shared until the moment calls for it.
My pains are no less than anybody else’s, because they’re mine and they’re what I’m connected with. You wouldn’t understand my pain, and I wouldn’t understand yours, but we both understand the word all too well. Pain is pain, just as hurt is hurt, just as rejection is rejection, and we can all learn from how each other processes it all, even though the situations are different. (A reason I don’t post about the specific situation I’m going through, but my feelings, thoughts, and beliefs on how to deal with the pain or hurt of it.)
I choose the life I want to see myself live. That’s where I keep my focus, that’s where my perspective stems from and that’s what I hold on to in dire moments when I am falling apart. I oftentimes talk to my reflection in the mirror just to convince myself back into a better reality or I’ll even stare into my eyes until I come to a realization that I’m better than how I’m feeling in that moment. Honestly, these things are so real for me. Sometimes dealing with falling apart looks like allowing what some might see as insanity for a moment to shed light on your inmost thoughts that you can’t reach normally. In these times I think back through my past and find what held me together, then relive it until I believe it. If I can notice the patterns in my life, I can more easily convince myself that I’m okay now. The things I tell myself today with words and thoughts is what’s going to set up how I will be thinking in the days to come.
I want to learn about anything and everything, so when people come and tell me about an opinion or passion that they have, I soak it up. If I notice they have something in their life and personality that I want; I ask, listen, and become a sponge for their words. But as I continue to figure out what my beliefs are and how powerful of a person I am, I realize that I often don’t question what these people say to me. In a conversation recently with one of the people I highly look up to about their beliefs, I found myself so naturally questioning him and returning my opinion on the subject. Only then did I realize that I had reached a level with him that I thought would take me years of knowledge. He is a person who’s beliefs are brilliant, but I found out in that moment that mine are just as powerful and valid. We can both learn from how the other thinks and their outcomes.
It’s not that everything works out for me… It doesn’t. Honestly, many days I think I have the worst luck, but that’s because all I know is what I experience, and I choose to keep learning from every experience I find myself in. Even though that doesn’t stop the tears when I want something and things go wrong, it does help me to make more sense of real life and understand that things don’t happen how we expect and we just gotta roll with it. Something else is sure to happen that will change our history. We can’t keep sitting in our disappointment because what we have in front of us is the destiny we are waiting for.
Our destiny is what we are living in right now. We are making and changing history with every decision, every hurt, every moment, and every outcome.
There’s a sweet romanticism that takes place in life by choosing to be free in loving, living, and giving yourself permission to have joy in abundance. You may not believe in it, but there’s an essence of what “life” is that I like to describe as a force that is constantly pushing and pulling for things to either work out or be brought apart. I am a firm believer in everything happening for a reason, the good and bad, accomplishments and mistakes, even the happenstance of slipping down the stairs or crashing your car. Every one moment leads you to your next, and so on. Coincidence is a life force played out.
Thing’s happen in our lives everyday that are the cause of other people’s life events happening. It is not about us, it’s about the success of humankind. The more you can allow yourself to be one with the world and with life, the easier and more connected you will be to your own self and to other people.
True connection and intimacy is something we all search for and all believe we find in various places and people. The problem with this is that a lot of people look for intimacy in relationship with people when the connection they so desire is with life itself. This force is telling them that they are disconnected, and they search their whole lives to feel connected and never end up satisfied with the results. Sex is designed as one of the greatest connections in intimacy, so people conclude that this is the ultimate encounter for connection. Those feelings last for a bit, but as soon as the desire for connection returns, people come back to sex again and again to have that “fix.” As soon as the connection with that person starts to lessen, people create thoughts that it’s the partner’s fault or maybe even their own so they move on to another, and the cycle of searching for intimacy in relationships continues.
When I talk about romanticism with life, my reasoning for that word is that there is a love that transpires in this force of life that works to intertwine itself within your day to day being. It’s a connection. It’s an intimacy. Life WANTS you to succeed in what you do and become the greatest possible at it. The terrible parts of your life often times lead to the greatness and success in other people lives. This sweet connection with our life force allows us to understand better that our situations are not our own but a collection of what takes place in life. We are what we look at in other people to be the greatest. When we are seeing other people’s success and wishing that were ours, they are seeing ours the same way.
We believe what we think. We become what we believe. We become what we behold. Our lives are too precious and beautiful to waste our time with fears of failure.
Failure is an idea, not often a reality. Your “failure” is still a success, but your thought process keeps a void present in your life that needs to be filled with intimacy to “overcome” or “fill” these feelings that you’re not good enough. We are constantly feeling either a love or hate from the things we encounter in life, and depending on how connected we are to our thought process and knowing what our personal intake of the world is, our feelings are going to be different. We have to make sure that what we think and believe about life is how we actually want to see it.
Our thoughts change our perception. Our perception changes our connection. Our connection changes history. Keep pressing into a better reality, a better thought process, and a better connection. This “life force” is our key to thriving.
As always with love, Makarios Asriel
Traveling a lot makes me really grateful for the people in my life who really know me. Who know the day to day things, the seasons I’ve been through, the processes I’ve dealt with, and the things I love. When I’m constantly in new communities and with new people, it can end up being exhausting. I love to just be. Not to put expectation on myself, but to have people who can ask me about things they know I’ve been working towards, who know my favorite things to do, understand my personality, or who can call me higher when I am lacking in my attitude, or in other areas of my life.
When I am not around people that know me, knowing myself and being aware of myself has been an extremely helpful tool for me to use to continue being the best me. I can understand when I’m off, or what it is that is causing issues with how I am feeling. I can figure out if it’s my body, my spirit, or my soul that is hurting, and I can use the tool of knowing myself to discover the causes. When I can discover the causes, I can uncover the solution.
Let’s talk about one of the reasons we may feel “off.” Shame. There are things that happen in our lives sometimes that put shame on us, which cause our spirits to feel violated and hurt. These are not always expected or intentional and sometimes feel out of our control. A good way to know when this has happened is to feel embarrassed to talk about the situation. If it is something you are not willing to share, there is a level of shame attached to that situation that will cause the rest of you to feel off.
- Notice how you approach people. Is it hard for you to make eye contact? Why?
- Notice your body and how you are holding it. Does it change around a certain group of people? Why?
When you begin to realize where the problem is, you start to find the answers to “why.” In evaluating what you do, and why you do it, you’ll become more aware of your feelings and more able to solve any issues at hand that are within yourself. Don’t be discouraged if sometimes this process takes a little longer than you hope or expect, you are still moving forward.
How can we begin to walk through the process of healing in this area?
- Learn to not judge yourself where shame is involved. Putting any judgement on yourself is setting another layer of pain on you, and another wall up to other people. It keeps you from freedom and keeps you from being fully you.
- Communicate and have hard conversations with people that are trustworthy and can protect your heart. Letting yourself embrace the awkward and sometimes extremely tense moments in many parts of your life will strengthen your spirit and your will and allow more freedom in yourself.
The idea of being fully you is not anything new to us. It’s thrown out there in many different ways, and people are consistently talking about it and saying, “just be you.” But how many of us really know who we are? How many of us have actually gotten to that place of truly understanding ourselves? I may have a good grasp of myself and how I am feeling in a lot of areas in my life, but I can’t say that I fully know who I am yet. What I do know is that I am getting closer to finding out.
Being fully you is being the best you that you can be. Sticking to your beliefs, but being open to your beliefs changing in order to be even better. The way you carry yourself, the way you dress, and the way you talk, that is all part of being you; however, if you are fully you, the atmosphere around you will show off more of who you are than the appearance of what you believe you are. Times change, seasons of life change, the world changes, people change; this all affects us being fully us and that’s the beauty of it. We can continually find ways to be more ourselves, better versions of ourselves, and fully ourselves.
As always, Makarios
Everyone’s deciding now, more than any other time of the year, to be a better version of themselves. Setting new goals, creating new dreams, having new visions for their lives. And we all plan to really do them. That’s the beauty of a new year. It feels like a new beginning with new found belief in ourselves. However, as the first few weeks turn into the first few months, we tend to lose sight of that. A big reason that in the end we don’t always complete our goals is because we stop believing in ourselves. Over and over again we hear the reoccurring excuses of a busy schedule, financial difficulties, a lack of motivation, etc. The level of discouragement that creates in us escalates from there. But what really happens? We stop believing we can do it, or that we are actually worth it. In fact, we might even start believing that it wasn’t really a new start at all, but just a continuation of the year before. It becomes not as important. And as the things we do with our lives start becoming less important, we start viewing ourselves as less important too.
I think a lot of times at the beginning of the year we feel a sense that the things that happened in the last year are kept in the last year. All the disappointments, the grief, the pain; that can all be left behind, and now we get to choose how our next year looks. In some ways that’s true, but as we look back on the years and say, “that happened in that year (and so on)”, we have to realize it’s still a continuation of our previous days, even if the date of the year changes. I’m not trying to be discouraging, but I want to point out that how you want to live your life can START now, just don’t stop that based on what time of year it is. Live out who you want to be all the time. The great thing about the new year is that it’s a reoccurring mark on the timeline of our lives; a way to keep track of our goals so we can continue pushing for success, and something that starts us creating good habits that we will continue long after the year is gone.
It’s also important to understand that a new year does not mean that you can forget about the pain that you were dealing with in the previous season of your life. It’s not a time to leave your feelings about a situation un-dealt with, but instead it might be just a good time for a break and a re-evaluation of how you are really feeling about the situation. You still need to go through that process; however, it may just be at a different time. There are seasons of your life needed for rest. For many people, the holidays are not a good time. Whether it be loss, heartache, or loneliness; some feelings and emotions may come up in you that you are simply not used to feeling and didn’t realize you still had within you. This can bring a lot of stress, a lot of hurt, and can become a huge burden that sits within you if it isn’t properly handled. The new year sounds like a perfect time to just leave all that behind you doesn’t it?
What if we actually dealt with our emotions, found the root causes, and became free in those areas? Think of how much better we would feel everyday, and how much more we would understand ourselves, love ourselves, and treat ourselves. Don’t you want that?
Something that will help us to pursue our goals all year long is to 1) make goals that are attainable, but still high enough to keep us pushing towards notable success, and 2) have more frequent check-mark dates that keep us accomplishing smaller goals on the path in reaching our overall goal. Continue to look at the vision you have for the end of this year and update your process as you go along. Your new life starts now!
Why, I can’t explain… Awful things happen all the time and affect so many people. It’s so tiring. It’s so exhausting. It’s so devastating. It’s so terribly life-changing. People will never know the great impact they have had on so many others, for better or for worse. People that die don’t know just how many people loved them, and people that kill don’t know just how many people they have affected.
Don’t forget… I find so many Christians today who are so caught up on “loving Jesus” that they are oblivious to or are ignoring the killing pain that happens in peoples lives. Don’t forget that there are real humans dealing with dreadful pain. To love Jesus is to follow what He did and who He was. Praying for PEACE when things are stirred up in someone’s life is not always the best option. “Well everyone needs peace.” No.. No they don’t, not if the peace numbs the pain that needs to be felt so feelings can be dealt with. I don’t know how biblical this is, and I’m not trying to be. I’m talking from my experiences of yearrrsss in the church. LOVE LOOKS LIKE SOMETHING.
Take. one. moment… One of my closest friends heard about devastating news in my life and cried with me. When I told her how much I appreciated that because of so many people just giving an arm-length comment, she responded, “It’s inconvenient to love genuinely…” Isn’t this what we are called to do? “Rejoice with those who rejoice; mourn with those who mourn.” (Rom 12:15) How come people find it difficult to be WITH a person for a moment to connect with how they are feeling.
Christians; I am calling you to a higher standard. Love looks like something. If you don’t know how to do ^^THAT then I would question who I am serving if I were you. It’s not all ‘Jesus’ and ‘God is good’ rainbows in the clouds all the time. It’s real shit that affects real lives, while you are in the mindset of “lets be happy, bless you, peace always.”
If you’re offended, take it up with God. If you’re not; good, you’re probably mourning with the broken. Question yourself always.
There is so much that goes on around us every day, and we can all get sucked into the emotions that are around us. We have to be intentional, or we might miss out on relationships and the small (but important) things in life.
Life can be insane. For me, I travel a lot. When I don’t travel, I work. When I’m not working, I’m trying to catch up with friends, stay connected with leaders, research schools, read books, write, and paint. I also go to concerts, coffee shops, and I make new friends every week it seems. I’m pretty busy. To be back home is a blessing and rest is definitely a must for my lifestyle.
Life can be exhausting, and if you’re living it up every day, you are probably tired every day too. Knowing your body and how much it can take is so important. Eating right, exercising, and staying healthy are great ways to make sure you’re getting the most out of your life and that you’re able to stay focused on what’s going on around you. Have a cup of coffee if you need it, or just want it because it’s fantastic.
Life can be really awesome. There are always ways to make your life better, and I hope you can say that your life is amazing, because you deserve that. Finding things that you love to do and making them a priority is important to living a life that you love. You might feel like you’re drowning in responsibility and that taking time for yourself is selfish and that other things are more important, but my question to you would be, do you love yourself? Because if you don’t make time for yourself, you won’t feel the best that you could feel, and you won’t have the fullest experiences that you can.
Because there is so much going on around us all the time, we have to be aware of how we are handling ourselves and our days. What are you doing to make sure the right things are prioritized for you? Ask yourself if doing that thing (whatever it may be) is loving yourself and your body before saying yes to it.
What are some ways that we can stay sane throughout our crazy lives? I think that’s something we all have to figure out for ourselves, and knowing what makes us feel the most at rest is probably something to add to our priority list (unless in some way it harms our body or spirit). Taking a few minutes out of our days can make a big difference in keeping us from being overloaded with information and stress. Having a moment to decompress and be reminded to be purposeful with our time where we are will change our perspective on what we are doing.
Being present throughout your encounters will also ensure that you will get the most out of every moment. Make being present a goal for this next season and watch how that changes things for you.
All the best in your journey, Makari Asriel
I recently had a short conversation with some people who knew me really well and who I’ve just recently seen again after being apart for months. The conversation was about how we have all changed so much (for the better) since last seeing each other, and in my friend’s response to this, he said, “…things become different when you are able to stand through the pain in the midst of your circumstances.” (paraphrased)
Yes, please. I want to be able to say that in my circumstances, when I’m hurting, when I want to curl up in bed and never be seen again, that I have stood in that season, through the crashing waves of emotions, and not been defeated.
A few weeks ago I was with some friends at the ocean, and within 10 minutes of being in the water my lungs were giving out from the cold and the exertion my body was using to stay up in the waves. I got to a point I could not longer stand and it was pretty difficult to breathe, but I didn’t want to get out just yet either since we had all really been looking forward to some beach time. As the waves would come, one of my friends would grab me and hold me up. We spent over an hour in that water, and he held me up the whole time. At one point, I decided to go on my own back to shore. Bad idea. The closer inland, the stronger the waves, and I was doing somersaults into the water, not even getting my feet planted before the next wave hit.
This is how my life feels at times, and definitely the seasons I’ve been going through recently. Trying to stand up on my own in the hurt and hard times has exhausted me to the point that I no longer could, and every time I would be about to give up, someone would come along and hold me up. This doesn’t mean that I was automatically okay. I still had to catch my breath, hold on to that person (those people), and keep my head above the water. But with their legs on the ground, I had something sturdy to be my stronghold when the waves did hit. I wasn’t defeated and I wasn’t alone. Also true that when I thought I could get back to my normal life (the shore) on my own, I’d end up pummeled by the waves again.
We’re not meant to walk through pain on our own. We’re not strong enough. None of us are.
Walking through your process with people helps you to stand through the pain of your circumstance. Pain will try its hardest to keep you down when you are hurting; life will do its best to keep you up when you are dying; friends will hold your hand and walk you through your process; and YOU will have the strength to stand when you feel powerless.
So I realize that a lot of you don’t know what I do with my life. In fact, I don’t even know what I do with my life. I just say yes. When opportunities to travel come up, I say yes. When I feel a prompting to do something, I say yes. When a situation is uncomfortable, I still say yes. Though I may have some crazy stories about some of the things I’ve said yes to, I do not regret a moment of it. What I do changes my life and changes the lives of the people I come in contact with.
Just last week I was part of an experience that impacted who I am. I have spent the last month in Santa Barbara, California at an Artist Boot Camp. Let me tell you, it really was a boot camp. There were 3 different focuses at this school (acting, music, & film production) and I was in the acting portion of it. I spent over 5 hours a day in acting class and several more hours doing homework for it. When I wasn’t doing that, I was in sessions with incredible speakers who are changing the world through the arts. It was such a change from “normal life,” being stuck on a mountain with barely any cell service, internet, down time, or sleep, but it was absolutely necessary for who I want to become and what I am working towards.
In my last class with my acting group, we all did a connection exercise that will stick with us forever. It started by pressing hands together in a circle (20 or so of us, with the rest of the camp sitting around the edge of our little class room watching us), and making eye contact with each person in our group. From there we were to move as a group and create a company of actors who breathe and work as one. We did this. In a way that left every person in that room with tears running down their faces. I can’t explain it or do it justice. Without knowing what we were doing, we worked as one, connected with each other, and our final move as a group was holding hands, taking a bow, and clapping for each other. The moment we did this, the music stopped, not a dry eye was in the place, and we ran together for a final group hug, knowing that what just happened was an experience that would forever change us. All because each one of us looked at each other and said yes to the moment.
Even though I haven’t slept in a month, and today is my first day home, saying yes to what I knew was right was the best decision I could have ever made. The people I have done life with this summer from all over the country, the friends I’ve made, the places I’ve been, and what I’ve learned about myself, has impacted my life in ways that will never stop increasing.
I am blessed, blessed, blessed. And I am so incredibly thankful for each person that has been a part a it, and helped me through it. I will never be the same.
I believe in saying no, and I am in the process of writing a post on that too, but right now it’s about saying yes to you, yes to your heart, and yes to others. Go for it, be you, be inspired. There is always a way. Know that, believe that, live that.
If you know you, trust your yes.
Love always, Makari Asriel
My acting track 9’14’15
We are all servants of a higher being. No matter who or what you believe that is. To some, it’s God, to some, many gods, a higher energy, a person, the earth.. We all believe in something greater than ourselves, no matter how narcissistic you could be.
Ever have those points of your life where you know there has to be something more? That there has to be something else out there that makes life worth more than it is in your own little world? Ever feel anxious and you don’t know why? This is one of the reasons for anxiety in peoples lives: they’re searching. They’re figuring out their beliefs, and because they don’t know what it is that they’re trying to find, everyday can become a struggle. I encourage you, be aware. Look in your everyday life for encounters that can prove to you who you are serving. If you know your Boss, life changes from searching for something greater, to living with something worth dying for. A servant: a person who is devoted to or guided by something. Devoted: having strong love or loyalty for something or someone. If you can find out who you serve, your level of love, commitment, loyalty, devotion, and satisfaction for life will rise. Your anxiety has to drop, because you can’t be guided by something and still be stressed out about the future. A guide: a person who helps to direct another person’s behavior, life, career, etc.
As you decide your next journey and the life you hope to have, don’t forget how to live. Everyday your conscience is telling you to search for it.
Loss is relevant to everybody. Every one of us has experienced loss in some form. Whether it be the laying off of a job, the death of a friend, the death of a family member, dropped communication with someone we love, losing valuable possessions, and on and on. We all experience loss differently. Based on what is important to us in our lives, that determines the level of hurt and the depth of pain that comes with our loss.
The reality. No one will understand exactly what you are dealing with, but a lot of people will try and sympathize based on what they have lost that is close to the depth you are experiencing.
The problem with this.. is that people try and relate, thinking that it sympathizes at the same level, when they don’t ever really understand the pain that you are feeling.
A lot of times people remember a past experience that they have dealt with, and even though they know that it was painful, they either 1) don’t want to bring up the pain that they felt, or 2) think that because they got through it, so will you. This sometimes creates the emotions in them that you are already fine and therefore don’t need the attention and help that you really do need. Or heaven help us, they give you the advice of things that helped them, without acknowledging the fact that your situation is completely different (and for the love of all things good, everyone’s emotions and feelings are all the same, RIGHT??!?!…) As a result of this, we have broken people who never get true healing and starve for affection in all the wrong places just to fill a hole that was never properly filled.
This. isn’t. everyone. I’m not stating that I know every human being and that this world is awful. Not what I’m saying. From my personal experience and spending time with hurting humans, this is the reaction people give a lot of times when someone is dealing with loss.
Hurting people are not broken people. Why do we always think that they are?! Get out of your bubble, take off your tainted lenses, and come to every person believing that they are great, loving, fun people who just happen to be in a difficult place. We all go through them, and we all need people walking through them with us.
So what can you do?
Learn to serve people. Turn off part of your brain for 5 minutes (trust me, you can do it, I believe in you) as you talk to people who are in pain, and listen to their story without already creating the situation in your own mind. Hurting people need to be heard. Let them know you are listening. And no, you don’t need to tell them your life story afterwards to make them feel like they’re not alone. This often times makes them feel like you are saying your life has been just as hard and trust me, that’s not what they need.
Give them your time and affection and show them that you care before they even ask for it, and learn how to love people specifically to how they receive it. (It never hurts to ask)
Most importantly, just be wise.
It’s hard to talk about just what it is we are thinking about. We’re scared that our inner being is too fragile or too “bad” to share how we actually feel. But if we did, we would understand how to better love people specifically based on their thought-life (i.e. encouragement if they’re thinking negative, hugs if they’re feeling lonely..etc.)
I don’t want to be worried about other people’s opinions about what I think. If you have a different opinion, great, that’s your opinion. I won’t be satisfied with keeping my mouth shut about what I believe. I know that I don’t know everything, and in many areas I’m still figuring out what it is I believe and what feels right to me. It’s a process, it’s a journey, and I’ll be on it for a long time.
This is how I choose to think about the way I have decided to live my life. I’m not okay with doing what I’m “supposed” to do or what I’m “told” to do for this reason: if I don’t go out and experience the things that I don’t know, how will I ever know what it is I really believe or ever truly understand people who believe differently than I do? I won’t.
The whole “learn from other people’s experience” thing does not work for me. Maybe you’re cool like that, but I’m definitely not. Everybody’s different, so if one person believes they have made a mistake, it might not actually be a mistake to somebody else.
There is so much judgment about people in this world. Most people fear what they don’t understand. Also, most people don’t know how to respond correctly in situations that they have never had a “connection” to, or an experience of.
Some of my best friends have been able to experience this since knowing me. I’ve been able to open their eyes to a whole new aspect of loving people they used to only love from the “outside” and because they’re “supposed” to love everybody, but now they can love them truly as they love themselves because they understand these different peoples worlds. How amazing.
I haven’t necessary made the best choices while pursuing this lifestyle but I can tell you that I wouldn’t change it for anything. I am who I am because of it and I get to live an amazing life where I can travel, experience different cultures, and make friends everywhere I go.
I am so loved because I choose to love. I am understood because I choose to understand. Everyone wants to feel like they are understood, so everyone who sees that you trying to understand them will accept you, faults and all.
Just my thoughts, Makarios
We all have tragedies in our lives. It’s what we do in the face of them that defines who we are and where our heart truly lies. If we are not truly okay inside, the real feelings of our heart will come out when we are faced with disappointment.
Pain makes people snap. The things that we never thought we would do, are now a product of our lives because of a hurt we had to deal with. Who do you look up to that became great in the face of pain? And how are they handling it two/three/four years from that time? We have many reactions to tragedies in our lives. Let me talk about 3 of them:
1, people do what they “know” is right, and sometimes never actually deal with the problem. These are the people we usually look up to for how they are handling the situation. When in reality, they listen to what their mind has been told, but not what their heart is actually saying. They will go to church, read their bible, say all of the things that they “know” they should be feeling (i.e. I’m not mad at God, God is good, I can do this, I know that person would never intentionally hurt me, it’s not their fault, it’s not God’s fault, etc.) These things are good. But if you never allow yourself to express the deep, dark, hurting emotions, how will you ever process through them?
2, people run to something that will numb the pain. We all know these people, and at times throughout our lives, we are these people. Numbing the pain can happen in so many different ways. Now let me tell you something.. if you think you are not this person because you don’t run to alcohol or drugs, look again. Running could look like distracting yourself by being with friends, going to concerts or movies, engulfing yourself in work or school, and even in some cases, spending all your time with God. Let me explain this. Running is anything that takes you away from dealing with the problem. Though spending time with God is amazing, if you are doing it out of “what you think is right” but aren’t using that time with Him to actually figure out what it is you need for the season, you’re running away. Don’t get me wrong, you are running to the greatest thing you could possibly run to, but if you don’t deal with the situation in that time, you will eventually end up blaming or being disappointed in God because the situation has happened or isn’t changing.
3, people face it. They take the time, they pause their lives, and they search out help from people or leaders they trust. This is the hardest in some senses because it means that now everything is on hold, people feel broken, people feel like a mess. But this is honestly the easiest solution in the long run. You will go deep, grow fast, be challenged, and break free. Everyday is a new challenge, a new day for growth, for receiving love, and for accepting where you are. By facing your pain, you will be able to deal with your situation, and walk out in freedom.
Sudden tragedies change our lives, and sometimes, everything about who we are. What are you going to do about the situation you are in? Will you choose God? Will you choose you? Or will you dive deep into a process that is life-transforming, even if that means facing the pain head on.
Your choice. Always your choice. Don’t let it be your downfall.
The title for this post is meant for anything that is hidden and isn’t the best part of you, brought to the light and dealt with. It doesn’t define you, it also doesn’t kill you because of the shame of it. My goal as you read this, is for you to discover for yourself that how you choose to live your life will change everything about you and the people you influence.
I wish I could explain to you just how important it is to live life right. But the truth is, I can’t explain it to you. Because we all learn differently and we all believe different things. Your right is different than mine, and if you think about it, what really is right? So I would just like to tell you about some of my process and why it’s been important for me to choose the best possible outcome of my circumstances.
I’ve done the wrong things. I’ve lived in that place, where the love I give comes from anger, and the peace I carry comes with discomfort. In that place, the choices I make hurt people, and the life I choose hurts me.When I’m not okay with my life, and when I have no vision for my future, everything I do comes with pain. And I end up ripping people’s lives apart. Trust me, it does make me feel “powerful” and in “control” and in a sick twisted way, it “satisfies” me. (I put these words in quotes because it’s how I feel in the moment, not how it actually makes me feel, because in reality it is going against my identity.)
Because of how I choose to live my life now, my challenge in those seasons isn’t to love people really well, or to believe that God still has a plan. My challenge is to create a safe place where I can just be, without feeling like my life is falling apart all around me. In those hard times, I know that what I am feeling won’t last forever. I know it is only a season, and my conscience is set on discovering the best way to deal with the struggle in front of me. I think one of the things that we have to remember in these times is “who do I want to be when I come out of this?” and then make that the end goal.
The things that happen in your heart are on display for everyone you encounter. One of the goals for my life is to always go through process in the best way possible. I’ve been in situations that tore me up to the point of hysteria. Everything I thought I knew came crumbling around me, and there is not much worse then feeling like your life is falling apart and there’s nothing you can do about it. Because I’ve had several of these situations in my life, I think it’s important for me to share some tips of how I choose to overcome in the midst of my circumstances.
1, with love. You have to understand that if you saw your best friend going through what you are dealing with, you would have so much grace for that person. Show that grace to yourself and understand that you need to love yourself through it in the same way you would want to love them.
2. with a heart of perseverance. You will win in the end, but only of you choose to. If you can live knowing that one day you will see the finish line, you will be able to persevere through anything. You’re not allowed to let yourself give up. Especially with everything you have already faced and overcome. You will win.
3. choosing to know in your heart that you are strongest person you know. Every night in these seasons I felt like I was going to die. And every day that went by was another day that I chose not to give up. When you are able to look back a week later, a month later, a year later, and see that even in the shittiest time of your life, you still lived a life worthy of love and acceptance, you will see how strong you truly are.
Hello from Patara, Turkey! I’m here on vacation, enjoying the beach, learning about different cultures, trying new foods, and resting in peace. My only dilemmas for today were the choices of food to eat at breakfast, and later if we should 1) swim in the Mediterranean, 2) walk through the ruins to see an ancient lighthouse, or 3) sit in the sunroom and drink a beer. Let me just say I’m having an amazing time. I’m allowing my brain to turn off and my thoughts to run free. Taking a break from life is sometimes the perfect remedy for life’s insanity. We can try so hard to take care of the soul and spirit that we forget that our body is just as important.
The city I’m staying in currently (Patara) is actually the birthplace of St Nicholas. Being able to stand where he stood and explore the ruins where he would have walked makes my imagination come to life. It’s amazing to think that the icon we know today around the world as Santa Claus was actually a real person whose good deeds eventually brought him fame. I encourage you to learn more about him if you can. An orphan child who used his wealth to help and serve people became a bishop very young and was part of the council that established the Trinity. He was imprisoned and tortured for his faith but never lost sight of his calling. St Nicholas was an incredible man who left an incredible legacy.
“Owning our story can be hard but not nearly and difficult as spending our lives running from it. Embracing our vulnerabilities is risky but not nearly as dangerous as giving up on love and belonging and joy–the experiences that make us the most vulnerable. Only when we are brave enough to explore the darkness will we discover the infinite power of our light.” ~Brené Brown ‘The Gifts of Imperfections’
Boom. My life at this moment summed up in a quote. We need to believe in who we are if we truly want to live in wholeness. We need to be open, vulnerable, and live in ownership of our lives in order to be powerful and not a victim to our circumstances. Stop shoving things down, stop hiding in the shadows, stop pretending we have it all together. ‘Me against the world’ mentality will crush you. People are not made to live outside of God, away from community, and without leadership speaking into our lives (I say ‘and’ instead of ‘or’ because those three cannot be separated.) If you do, you will only last so long feeling ‘good’ about your life and be continually searching for something to fill the void of emptiness in your heart. Listen to the experiences of many…nothing will. You could have everything seemingly together (finances, great relationships, choosing to believe all the right things about yourself (i.e. joy, love, acceptance), a stable job, a happy life, etc) but without God as your everything, without a community around you, and without leadership speaking into your life, you will not succeed to the fullest that you were created and born to be. You were predestined to be more than you are capable of by yourself.
I love the last sentence of that quote, “Only when we are brave enough to explore the darkness…” then we will find our light. The darkness is meant to be walked through. Otherwise, how will you ever find a way to turn on the light? Nothing will ever happen if you just choose to sit there in it. As one of my pastors recently said about walking through difficulty, “the darkness is there for us to recall what life was like when the lights were on.” We need to be able to recall who we are and what God says about us so that in dark times and dark places we are able to still find our way through the darkness to turn on the light. This is also another reason for community! In times where we end up feeling stuck and don’t have the strength to get up on our own, that’s where friends come in the room and turn the light on for us. Now hear me…be smart. Understand what I’m saying. I’m not telling you that you can just sit there and always let someone else turn on the light. Who of us would actually expect a friend to come and turn the light on for us when we need to get up in the middle of the night or when it is dark? What I am saying is that there are times and seasons in our lives where we just can’t do it ourselves and need a friend or leader to shine light on our situation. It requires vulnerability. It may be tough. It may be messy. But it may also be the best way for breakthrough in our lives.
I hope you are willing to go on this journey with me. To see yourself as God sees you, to be known in the darkness, and to find your light.