The Air That I Breathe

I have an ego.

There’s no denying this and I’m totally okay with it. I got bored and decided to promote my awesomeness on my Facebook account for my own personal amusment and a friend of mine posed a fun request:

She wants to learn how to shine! She’s pretty shiny already! One of my oldest friends told me the last week that she sees me as her role model, the person who’s example she follows to be her best self.  I was floored.  Truthfully, we all have the ability in us to shine, we just don’t. We simply live, go about our day, live our meh little lives and then…die. From the time I was small, I knew I wanted more, to be more, to be everything and while I may not have everything I want all of the time, truly I have accomplished great things and hope to continue to do so. I want to show my daughters how to do more than just live. I want to show them how to radiate, that they have the power to change the universe, even though they already have. But it’s my job to be my best self, to lead by example, so every move I make is to be someone that they can be proud of, as well as so that when my time comes, I know I did everything I could to achieve everything I ever wanted.

So, as requested, here is a lesson on how to shine

(DISCLAIMER: Shininess not guarenteed. Truthfully, if you are reading this, you are likely an amazing person and do not, nor will you ever need my help. While yes, I have an ego, I’m also self aware and understand that I can be a tornado of screw-up and any advice I could give may mean destruction. But if you need a good laugh, continue.)

1. Be your own biggest cheerleader. If I waited for people to believe in me, I likely would have offed myself at 12 years old. On paper, I don’t look like I have a whole lot of potential; product of the system, kind of spacey, scatterbrained and dorky. But I know who I am and I know what I am capable of. Only you know what resolve you have and what you can make happen if you set your mind to it. Remind yourself that you kick ass.

2. Surround yourself with people who see that you kick ass. If they don’t genuinely believe in their heart of hearts that your destiny is to be great, then why keep them in your life? I’m pretty sure that I could count the number of close friends that I have with both hands (I may need a toe or two) and those people genuinely believe that I could conquer nations with only my own resolve. They know I’m right about things when on paper it looks wrong and an outsider thinks I’m psychotic, but in the end, when it all works out according to the MHC master plan, they just look at me and say “I knew it.” The people closest to you should believe that you are the coolest and most awesome person on Earth, support you in all things, dumb or not and genuinely believe that you were put on this Earth to make it better. Almost all of us have the potential to make life better, even if it’s just for our child or family members or friends.

3. Embrace solitude. I do not need a person to make me feel like a whole person. If I choose to be with you, it’s because you are someone I feel makes my life better, someone who I feel will be a partner in life, someone I can count on and someone who knows they can count on me in all things, to make them happy, to accept them completely, flaws and all. Don’t just date the first person that shows interest. Hold true to your standards, don’t settle and be with the right person, someone who truly “gets” you in every sense of the word. Forgives your screw ups, big and small. Someone who is willing to stand by you in all things, even when things seem their suckiest. Someone who cares and no matter what the circumstances will always find themselves drawn back to you because they know that you are the constant, the person who makes their life better. Pro tip: If everyone around you says that they’re a positive influence on you, then chances are, that’s the right person to be in your life. Sometimes it’s actually nice to be alone. It’s nice to have the independence to do what you need to do, like achieve your professional goals. Besides, if you can’t enjoy spending time with yourself, why should anyone else?

4. Never let go of the belief that everyone has the potential to be a good person. Once you become cynical, you lose the ability to see the good in good people. You will question their motives, their pure, genuine love for you, their genuine friendship and you will destroy it. Don’t let one heartache, or two, or a million take that trusting part of you.

5. Observe and report. Of course there would be a journalist reference, but it’s true. One thing that has always set me apart from everyone else and the one thing that people love most about me is that I see so much more than most others. While a friend & I may walk down the street, he will see people on the street, while I will tell you that there is a couple fighting and that toddler waved at me and the person beside us mentioned the Wind Mobile store is open. Observe and report. Why is this important? Because whether you call it God, fate, the flying spaghetti monster or a series of coincidences, life is always showing us the way to go. Life is always showing us the things that we need to see in order to figure out the next step. Whether it’s a subtle hint, or some huge neon sign to your right, look around, see the signs in front of you. See the sequence of events. Watch your own behaviour. Chances are it’ll show you what you need to do to shine.

6. Quitting is for pussies. It took me three attempts to quit my last job, that is how committed I am to seeing things through! Honestly, quitting IS for pussies. Sometimes we need to change the plan to save our sanity (ie I didn’t quit on my marriage, I simply restrategized my plan to raise a happy family. Sometimes, team members need to get cut) but just because something didn’t work the first time, or the second, or the third, doesn’t mean the fourth time isn’t the charm. My very first article was heavily panned by my editor. I cried, then I crumpled it up and decided to create something better…and I did. Every time an article didn’t work, I tried again. Every time I eff up yet another assignment in law, I try again. Fight with a friend? Meh, leave it in the past and…yup! TRY AGAIN. Because the idea that something works out perfectly the very first time or that the very first sign of adversity means it’s effed is ridiculous! Most successful experiments fail the first five times. It took Jack Daniels seven times to create a delicious sour mash whiskey. Nothing works out the first time…at least not usually. Sometimes we have to get up and try again…and again…and again…

7. Music. Life has a soundtrack. Find yours. (Mine currently is a mishmash of Ed Sheeran, Maroon 5 and Green River Ordinance if you need suggestions!)

There you have it, MH’s quick tips to shininess! Of course, those are only suggestions, your path is truly your own. So, find your broken road and see where it leads you. I’m fairly certain that it will lead you to exactly where you were meant to be, even if (like all of us), you took a couple of detours, a few pit stops and got lost six times along the way.

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