Reflecting on the past decade, it’s surreal to realize that ten years ago, I was in my twenties, happily decorating my first Christmas tree after leaving Jamaica to embark on a new chapter. The term “second life,” which I picked up from my boss, perfectly sums up the distinct phases of my journey. No camera crews, no famous faces, just me in a new country, eager to shape the next ten years. The year was 2013, and hope fueled my spirit.
Now, as I sit down to write this blog exactly one week after my birthday, I find myself grappling with a myriad of emotions. The years post-2020 have been a whirlwind, and the current state of the world has forced me to retreat, prioritizing my mental well-being in a world that feels like water and I can’t swim.
This year, amidst the chaos, has been a profound teacher. I’ve come to realize that I’m often unaware of people’s capabilities, especially when they believe their actions won’t be discovered or face consequences. It’s intriguing to witness the real essence of individuals when they think no one is watching. The difference between what people do because they think they have to; the dichotomy between actions driven by duty and those rooted in genuine desire is a fascinating debate.
Furthermore, this year has shown me that while the people around me may not have changed drastically, my personal evolution has subtly transformed the way I perceive them. Some relationships will forever hold a place in my heart, but the dynamics have shifted because I am not the same person I was a year ago. Three hospital visits in three years have been eye-opening, revealing my needs for self-preservation and self-coexistence in this complex world.
The reality hits me that we often deceive ourselves—we aren’t who we believe we are, our lives unfold in ways we may not comprehend, and none of it is happening how we think its happening. That’s a story for another day Chile but trust me it gets DEEEP!. This year, I yearned for solitude more than ever before. Days spent alone indoors felt like a quest for self-discovery, an attempt to unearth the authentic me. It’s almost as if I’m on the verge of enlightenment, no longer craving external connections. I dream of solitude—no embraces, no laughter, just a journey inward.
Gone are the days of seeking inclusion, invitations, or friendships. A decade ago, when I first moved to the US, loneliness and exclusion haunted me. I battled depression by immersing myself in reading, YouTube, and honing various skills. From obtaining certificates in interior design and photography to building and rebuilding websites, earning a degree, and embracing fitness, these pursuits marked the peak of my solitude-induced productivity.
The realization struck that the only way to avoid disappointment and find contentment was through letting go. And the only way to let go was to be alone with myself. Paradoxically, the more time I spend with myself, the more I sense a growing disconnect with others—a peculiar yet transformative journey of self-discovery.
Do Not Build Fortresses to Protect Yourself—Isolation is DangerousRobert Greene – The 48 Laws Of power
I know that solitude can become very dangerous, I feel it. The more time I spend alone the more I grow apart from people and don’t want that solitude to be disturbed. But I also acknowledge the potential dangers of prolonged solitude and the subsequent detachment from others. Balancing the need for personal space with maintaining connections is a delicate dance. My goal for 2024 is to have a more nonchalant attitude towards others, finding equilibrium doesn’t mean dismissing meaningful relationships but rather embracing a healthier perspective.
The Potential you see in others is not real, it’s what you would do if you were in their positionInstagram Meme
That quote altered my entire outlook that day, and it’s essentially shaping the trajectory of the upcoming year. I used to invest an extensive amount of time and energy in constructing relationships with individuals who ultimately didn’t reciprocate the effort. In the aftermath, I would find myself labeled as a bully, accused of treating them poorly, or making them feel negatively about themselves. My intentions were rooted in seeing immense potential in them and desiring greater things for them than they aspired to achieve. However, I’ve come to realize that a key component to a stress-free life is relinquishing the urge to want things for people who do not share the same level of enthusiasm or care for those aspirations. Let people be Lauren, even if you thin who they want to be is stupid lol.
Have an amazing holiday everyone, Merry Christmas to those who care about it and let’s take 2024 one day at a time.