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Archive for December, 2013

You might not realize this, but some people just don’t feel like celebrating Christmas, and they have their own reasons for it.¬†They know they’re supposed to think it’s fun an merry, but they just don’t feel it. And they can’t change the fact that they are not looking forward to Christmas any more than you could have green hair. Sure, you could die it green, but it would not BE green. Just like they can pretend they like Christmas, even though they don’t.

Lately, I’ve been noticing how big the difference sometimes is between what other people think you feel, and what you actually really feel. It has to do with expectations. Expectations of other people, and expectations of yourself.

As a kid, you grow up with expectations people have about you. People look at you funny when you say you don’t like chocolate; people don’t understand when you just want to read a book instead of play with your friends; people think it’s weird when you say you’re looking forward to going back to school after a long holiday. You are SUPPOSED to think free time is fun, you are SUPPOSED to conform to other people’s feelings about things. Maybe it’s a good thing that we grow up like that, because it’s part of life, but somehow it doesn’t feel right for me.

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I used to say: “Hope for the best, expect the worst.”. It was a coping mechanism that I don’t fully support anymore. It tells you to want something, be attached to the outcome, and if you don’t get what you want, force yourself not to be sad about it. I don’t see the truth in this anymore. I deal with things differently now.

I’ve been talking a lot about not attaching to outcomes. I think it’s good to want something, but not to be attached to the outcome. But I’ve also found it very hard not to be attached to an outcome. If you want something, it’s natural to think about what the outcome could be like. And just thinking about outcomes will gently and very easily nudge you into the direction of being attached to a certain outcome. So what to do?

I don’t know the answer to that question. Permitting yourself to make mistakes might be part of it. Accepting a different outcome than the ones you anticipated, in whichever way, is another. But then, is it really such a bad thing to hope for the best? (I really don’t like the negativity of the ‘expect the worst’ part anymore.)

Today a friend got me thinking about the difference between hope and faith. For some time now, I have felt like hope does not help me anymore, whereas faith has helped me and continues to help through my life. It has always been with me, and has only grown in the past couple of years. This friend asked me what I thought the difference was between the two things.

I thought for a while and the answer I came up with surprised me in its simplicity. They both voice an anticipating to a certain outcome, without attaching oneself to it. But with hope, the underlying sentiment is uncertainty. And with faith, it is certainty.

With certainty comes confidence. And with confidence comes positivity. And with positivity good things come your way. I feel like this might be part of a bigger question yet unasked. To be continued.

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