On Success And Purpose

This week I was asked to write a post for my friends blog! So I though you would appreciate a convenient little link to go a check out not only my post, but also Tim’s blog! He writes a lot about personal development, and he’s all about the #hustle. So please, go and check out what I’ve written by clicking here.

I’ll be writing more original content soon!

 

Much love,

Katelyn Anne

The “I Like-Like You” Talk

Having a crush can feel like the most confusing thing in the world. Being around your crush can be both the most pleasant and most torturous sensation all at once. And trying to talk to your crush can almost cause your brain to crash.

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I know all of this from personal experience, but I’ve never been privileged to see the other side of the story before. And by the other side, I mean having a male friend confiding in me for advice on how to approach his female crush.

It was a classic case of girl likes boy. Boy was oblivious. Girl moves on. Boy likes girl. Girl says she doesn’t want to get involved with anyone right now (6 months ago now). Girl begins flirting with boy again. Boy is conflicted and confused. Where do they stand now??

Thing is, this isn’t unusual. I’ve seen many similar situations, even been in it myself. But simple though it may seem written out in a chronological order, emotions have this incredible ability to cloud our judgement like a thick morning fog. Sure, you can see the lights shining through, but there is every possibility of being blindsided by some random cyclist on his way to work. This is a very specific metaphor, isn’t it?

So lets de-mistify/de-mystify the situation. (ha, puns.) Because it’s really quite simple. However complicated your tentative romantic situation, nothing clears up romantic confusion like going right to the source and having the talk. *gasp* DUN-DUN-DUNNNN!Z¸¸¸¸¸¸¸¸Ax a -sorry, cat on the keyboard.

The first thing to remember when you consider talking to your crush is that, in fact, they are just as human as you are. There is even a good chance they are feeling just as trepidatious about the situation as you do! Also remember that there is no point in liking someone and dreaming about having any kind of relationship with them if you can’t bring yourself to interact with them in the first place.

So you’ve decided to talk to your crush, congratulations! … Now what? I recommend keeping it casual. Don’t make a big deal of it, it will only make you more nervous, and the other person will sense your energy and in turn make them nervous about your nervousness. You’ll both be caught in a circle of freak-out. So, take deep breath.

How do you two normally interact? If it’s a one-on-one friendship, finding an opportunity to talk to them in an appropriate setting should be easy enough. If you hang out in a group, just casually. Casually. The reason that I emphasise casually is that if you show signs of nerves and the one of the group catches on, the endless teasing will begin, and you don’t need that. (If they do catch on, just laugh it off. It’s important to be able to laugh at yourself, it makes you a cool person.) Just see if you can take them aside for a moment. Fall behind the group while you’re walking or call them over to look at something away from the crowd, something like that.

And when I say “the appropriate setting”, I don’t mean a setting that could be considered date worthy. Long walks along the beach at night? Best not. Dinner and dancing? Talk about putting someone on the spot! Make it a setting where the two of you can comfortably transition into a completely different topic after having the talk, so to relieve any tension immediately after the fact.

Here comes the most difficult part: honesty. I unfortunately can’t craft a script for you, but I can give you some main pointers to help you construct your argument. Because the ultimate aim here is to get an answer so that you can then move forward in whatever direction presents itself.

  1. State the facts. This could be as simple as “I feel like things are weird between us”. This is a good opportunity to talk about the signs that you have been seeing to make you think that there might be something there that wasn’t there before. Some chemistry. Something that you have trouble putting into words even. But something!
  2. Where do you stand? Your crush might be unsure of how you feel, which is why they would be giving you mixed signals. Avoid intense language like a straight out “I love you.” I have made this mistake in the past and even though you might be sure of how you feel, you need to be sure of how they feel before making any solid statements. That could make the person feel overwhelmed and uncomfortable. So something along the lines of “I wouldn’t mind taking our friendship to a romantic level…
  3. … if that’s what you would like.” You need to prioritise the other person over your own feelings, because that’s what love is! In any kind of positive relationship, love is the key ingredient. And love is putting someone else’s needs over your own. (There is a line where you do need to love yourself too, but that’s another topic for another time.) Because ultimately, if you care about this person, how they feel matters.
  4. Ask the final question: How do you feel? After this, you’ve done everything you can and it’s out of your hands. Well done! You’ve crossed the finish line.
  5. But wait, there’s more! You’ve come out with the truth and now come the consequences. Try to give them your full attention as they give you their answer even if your own heartbeat is distractingly intense. If they pause, do NOT jump to the conclusion that they are uncomfortable and don’t know how to let you down easy. Be patient, give them time to respond. They may need a moment to compose themselves.
    • If they respond positively, I advise NOT reacting straight away like a Hollywood movie and pulling them into a kiss (tempting though that may be), but that’s just me. Thank them for clearing this up, tell them that you’re glad they feel the same way, maybe even arrange a date in the near future.
    • If they respond negatively, do NOT get emotional. At least, not until after they’ve left. Thank them for helping to clear this up, and reassure them that you won’t pursue them any longer, and that you just needed to know for sure. Do NOT give them grief for mixed signals or teasing or flirting. Why did they act the way they did? Who knows. It’s their character flaw and not yours. The line in the sand has been drawn and the answer is conclusive.

This whole concept of talking to the person you like-like might make you super anxious, and you might be hesitant as to whether you even want to know the answer as to whether or not they like-like you back. But let me reassure you that however they respond, the sun will rise again in the morning.

Some people think that you have to be a courageous is just a thing that a you are, like it’s in your DNA. But that’s not true at all. All it takes is a few seconds of insane, embarrassing courage to do the thing. One needs not be brave all of the time in order to be brave at all. So be wise, but also be brave.

Much love,

Katelyn Anne

Suffering

That’s right, I’m jumping into the deep end today, because life happened. And who knows, this might even help someone who is going through a difficult season right now. Please keep in mind that I am a Christian, and as such my blog will occasionally delve into theology, and discuss topics through my own, Christian, point of view. This is one of those posts.

**WARNING: SPIRITUALLY EXPLICIT CONTENT**

We live in a broken world where suffering is inevitable. Sometimes things happen for a reason, sometimes life simply isn’t fair. Regardless of circumstance, none of us are immune to grief, pain, and loss. This should not come as a surprise to anyone.

I recently read Walking With God Through Pain And Suffering by pastor, theologian, and Christian apologist Tim Keller. I will not list the 10 ways we can respond to suffering because that would take far too much time, and a shortened version would take away from you the chance to read the book for yourself. Seriously, if you love logical deconstruction of theological arguments, this is the book for you! I will, however, briefly touch on one of points that I feel will help a lot of people, regardless of philosophical persuasion.

Thinking.

Pop quiz: what does the Christian church of Philippi in 62AD and American former competitive swimmer and the most decorated Olympian of all time, Michael Phelps, have in common? (And no, it’s nothing to do with shark racing, which, by the way, who knew?) They were essentially given the same advice!

When Michael Phelps was at the Beijing Olympics in 2008, he set a new world record. But the story is better than that. I read about Phelps’ story in The Power Of Habit, written by journalist and non-fiction author Charles Duhigg. It turns out that when Phelps dove into the water at the beginning of the race, he could tell immediately that something was wrong. There was moisture inside his goggles, they were broken. For most swimmers, losing your sight in the middle of an Olympic final would cause them to panic.

But Phelps was calm.

It turns out that part of his training regime was mental rehearsal. His coach, Bob Bowman, would tell him to “watch the videotape. Watch it when you go to sleep and when you wake up.” He wasn’t talking about a real videotape, of course, but rather a mental visualisation of himself performing perfectly in a race. This made it so that when Phelps actually did race, his habits would take over, following what he had rehearsed mentally. When Phelps goggles failed, he was prepared because one of his “videotapes” had prepared him for problems like this, and he knew ahead of time how to respond to this crisis.

Now let’s rewind about 2000 years to when Philippians in the Bible was written. The church in Philippi was the first Jesus community that Paul started in Eastern Europe. Philippi was a Roman colony in ancient Macedonia. It was full of retired soldiers and known for its patriotic nationalism. There Paul faced resistance when he was announcing Jesus as the true king of the world. And after Paul moved on from there those who became followers of Jesus continued to suffer resistance and even persecution. But they remained a vibrant community faithful to the way of Jesus. Paul sent this letter from one of his many imprisonments to say thank you for the continued financial support from the church, and to give them some advice for their current circumstances.

Paul urges the Philippians not to give in to fear, but despite their persecution to vent all of their emotion and their needs to God, who will give them peace. And that peace, Paul says, it comes by focussing your thoughts on what is noble, right, and pure. What Paul actually means (because there are a lot of language barriers between Greek and English and a lot of meaning gets lost in translation if we aren’t aware of that) is to think hard and long about the core doctrines of the Bible, because that’s where Christian peace comes from, God.

“Your focus determine your reality.” – Qui-Gon Jinn, The Phantom Menace

When you see a storm on the horizon, it only makes sense to tie down your belongings, get yourself to a safe place, and be prepared to wait it out. Now often we don’t see tragedy coming, it has a bad habit of blindsiding us. But as I mentioned at the beginning, we are all vulnerable and it should not be a surprised when suffering does enter our lives. So it only makes sense to meditate on how you want to respond when that time comes. Learn to control your own thoughts so that when hopelessness enters, you can stop it from controlling you.

I’m afraid that my advice won’t make life hurt any less when it decides to sucker punch you. But it might just make it easier to eventually pick yourself back up after the storm passes.

 

Much love,

Katelyn Anne

 

P.S. If you’re interested in reading the books I’ve talked about, you can buy them through these links.

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The Power Of Habit

 

 

Walking With God Through Pain And Suffering

First blog post

In this moment in space and time, as I stare at the fake lavender plant that pokes out from behind my laptop – because God knows any real botanical life under my care is in danger of dying from neglect – I am alive. And, if you’re reading this, I assume you are too! Life is a good thing, but it does not last forever (at least, not on this plain of reality, but believe me, that’s a whole other discussion!).

This is why I started video blogging on my YouTube channel, alwaysgettingthere, in the hopes of leaving my mark on the world. And maybe, one day after I’m long gone, someone might stumble upon my little corner of the internet and have access to a small part of my soul that I’ve left behind. Perhaps a digital archeologist?

But as much as I enjoy making little videos about the days of my life, I have more to say that doesn’t quite fit the purpose of my channel, daily vlogging. So what can you expect from this blog? Some stories I wasn’t able to capture on video, the things I like, some things I don’t like, reviews on books and movies and music, perhaps even the occasional deep philosophical thought!

I’m still experimenting with this blogging thing, so if there’s anything you’d like to suggest or to tell me that you like (or don’t like!) what I’m writing about, use that comment section below, you will be heard!

Maybe, just maybe, as I share my thoughts and grow as a person, I might be able to add some value to you and contribute to your journey as well. Let’s grow together! … Okay, that was cheesy. You know what I mean. Hopefully we can grow more than my fake lavender plant.

 

Much love,

Katelyn Anne.