I’ve often read that when we feel ill-at-ease or uncomfortable with people’s behavior, it’s because we don’t accept that very same thing about ourselves.
As a pure product molded from society, I’ve often judged people when they dressed differently; Tattoos, piercings, flashy colors and sparkling nails, ripped clothes, etc. I loved to observe them. At some point, I had to look away so they wouldn’t feel uncomfortable or surprised by me staring at them.
Then I wondered: “Do they even feel uncomfortable?”
I’ve often felt the urge — but never dared — to talk to one of them. …
It’s the middle of the year, and the pandemic stole half of it.
My confinement wasn’t eye-opening. I had no aha-moment like half the planet pretends they had: I just experienced frustration and social banning — and I gained 8 pounds.
How would I get my social life back after that chaotic experience?
The virus had stolen my joie de vivre in exchange for that deep feeling of loneliness. I needed to get it back to feel alive again. While masks were still hiding half Paris’ face, terraces and restaurants started smiling again. Yet, I was not ready.
I took a look at the calendar and had a feeling of emergency. “Damn! There are only six months left this year!” I thought. …
Your grandpa was one of a kind.
He was the first man I met, and he’ll remain the love of my life.
The word that describes your grandpa best, in my opinion, is “Mensch.” For your great-grandmother Paulette, it was more than a word; it was a concept.
In the Yiddish culture, a Mensch is a person of integrity and honor. The English term would be “stand-up guy.” According to Leo Rosten, author of The Joys of Yiddish, a “mensch” is “someone to admire and emulate, someone of noble character. The key to being ‘a real mensch’ is nothing less than character, rectitude, dignity, a sense of what is right, responsible, decorous.” …
A few months ago, I received a message from someone I had met a few years ago through a common friend.
Charles and I met only once or twice. We happened to exchange a few lines here and there in the past few years. It was always compassionate and kind, but we were not close friends.
In his message, he needed help getting his bike fixed (I work for a bike repair company). We started chatting. He ended up writing that a friend we have in common was visiting him in the evening, and invited me to join them. …
Have you ever noticed how often we underestimate the power of change? This pandemic has been a surprise to all of us. Adapting to this situation has been particularly challenging for many of us.
Since day one of lockdown, a good friend and I kept calling and zooming each other to keep up the virtual social vibe. We are both single and live alone, and we were lucky to keep our remote jobs.
We were very empathetic to people living with kids in a small space, or how hard it might be to work in a hospital right now or to lose a loved one. …
My parents always allowed me to switch from hobby to hobby. If it was hard, I was allowed to give up and chose a new thing. Every exciting discovery turned into a firework passion. By the next day, it was always gone.
They never encouraged me or pushed me. They never taught me “difficult”. I’ve been raised in easiness. Imagine being stuck at a beginner level for everything you start.
Until recently, I considered myself to be a frustrated-switcher-beginner-not fighter expert.
Someone once told me I should write.
« Really? You? Writing? Please. » Meet my ego.
I loved journaling. I had written a few meaningless notes. I loved writing application letters — weird, I know — and people loved them. …
Life isn’t easy. It’s a bitch.
It sometimes comes with trouble and pain.
Therein lies the difficulty
Of living the life that we want.
The life that we dream of,
The easy, happy one.
To get it, you must deserve it.
You have to fight to earn happiness,
To remain yourself and to keep growing.
Never let someone stop you.
Have ambition, work, and reach YOUR goals.
It’s painful. It’s hard. But it’s worth it.
Happiness is everywhere, but you don’t see it yet.
Open your eyes, your mind, and your heart.
Learn, eat, and dance. Smile, dream, and cry.
Arouse those exclusive moments,
Because they won’t come by themselves.
Once you have found the recipe,
Repeat to improve, and never stop doing it. …
One of the first self-help books I read was The Power of Habits by Charles Duhigg. It unraveled everything you should know about habit building.
When it came to reaching my goals or starting something new, I tried to do it my way. My way meaning “I’ll do it whenever I feel like it.”
That strategy of mine — surprisingly — didn’t work because “when I’ll feel like it” is not a plan.
I was allergic to those habit-gurus and routine strategies and said they weren’t for me.
They wouldn’t work anyway because I was not everyone else.
If someone had paid me to make up excuses each time I wanted to avoid doing what books recommended at that time, I’d be rich by now. …