Happiness, You’re Mine

After A LOT of self-reflection, I decided a few years ago to do what it takes to make myself happy. I found myself at a point where I was putting the happiness and well-being of others before my own and it made me feel… like crap. The moment I realised that and decided to make a change marked a new chapter in my life. It sounds a bit cliche but I really was about to live life for the advancement of my own happiness.

Why happiness? I firmly believe if you’re happy, then it’s possible to find joy in everything else,  no matter the situation. Let’s use a job for example. I sat down and thought about what would make me happy at work. My list ended up being a set of conditions that included points like: working independently but having a team to fall back on, a chance to move around and do new things within my role/company, and problem solving while helping others. These we just a few of the points I made, but afterwards I had to ask myself if my job was fulfilling all the things I needed to be happy at work. The reality was my job wasn’t meeting all the needs I had. I did my best to change the environment but I had to accept there was only so much I could do. I ended leaving that job for something else that actually paid less than what I was making at the time but I did not hesitate or regret my decision. This new job was meeting the points I set out for a job/work environment I needed to be happy.

There was a chain reaction effect in my life when I rejected the notion of “doing what I’m supposed to” and replaced it with doing what I wanted in order to be happy. I found myself in a position of saying ‘no’ more often and not having to make myself feel smaller. It’s amazing how much we accommodate others and quickly forget to accommodate ourselves.

Does this sound selfish? Quite possibly. But it’s like the safety demo they give on a flight… you need to put your own oxygen mask on before you can effectively help others. I believe in giving selflessly and without expectations of receiving it back. And for this reason, I think it’s important that I be happy and comfortable to give a piece of myself without feeling like I’ll be missing a part.



Pop Colour

Totally in love with this overcoat right now. I like that it’s a classic silhouette but a super bright colour. Definitely something I could see myself wearing.


Failure is an interesting topic for me. As someone who struggles with the ideals of perfection, failure is actually something I think about quite often. I know for me, my perfectionism is rooted in a solid belief that “I must not fail”. Does this make sense?..

I grew up thinking and wholeheartedly believing that failure is about the worst thinking that could happen. In my school years, failure was a very black and white idea. It meant not getting anything less than a B (I’m being 100% serious). My parents weren’t too strict on me when it came to grades, mostly because I was a good kid and always tried hard with my school work. But for myself, not being one of the top students in the class equated to failing.

After I graduated high school, my definition of failure shifted. Failure became not being employed and not passing my university courses. After surviving a lot of ups and downs in my uni days, I realised my fear of failure got the best of me. By the end of it, I tried dodging all the courses I didn’t like (but needed to take) since I knew I wouldn’t do as well in them (I have a hard time faking enthusiasm and motivation in courses I don’t like… HA!). I ended up burning out in uni so many times (also because life stuff was thrown in the mix). I really felt like I failed at university because I didn’t finish in 4 years with a 3.825 GPA and multiple job offers. (Fun fact: I’m actually a few credits shy of graduating.)

In my post university life now, with adulthood in full swing, I find my ideas of perfection/failure have shifted again. These days, failure is not being unhappy. I try my hardest to lead a happy life and trust that the necessities of life will take care of themselves in the process. I’ve gained more confidence in myself and my abilities (I really do think this comes with age), which helps me to trust that I will survive somehow/someway.

I think the shift in thinking over the years is able to show where my priorities lie and what I’m working towards. Right now, failure is living an unfulfilled and unhappy life. My quest for happiness in everyday life is the ultimate perfection – the failure is not living the life I want.

Racist Comments

“Hey monkey.”
“You guys need to stop having so many kids and being deadbeat dads.”
“Why can’t you guys put away the guns and stop killing each other?”

These are comments I’ve personally received in the span of 24 hours this weekend.
The fact is, these words don’t hurt… I’m not even mad. But simply put, I am tired. I’m tired of having to explain and defend myself against extremely ignorant and one-dimensional opinions using a blanket statement based on stereotypes. I’ve become immune to hearing racial slurs being shouted my way while using transit in a city considered to be welcoming of other cultures. My experience, my education, my choices, my words, my thoughts, my feelings… all overlooked when the colouration of my skin is used to classify me within a very narrow “ideal”.

When I’m told all lives matter, I wholeheartedly agree. All lives should matter, but they clearly do not. What happens when I’m told repeatedly by strangers that my life isn’t worth as much as theirs because of the amount of melanin my body has produced? Why is it wrong to say #BLACKLIVESMATTER in response?

If you feel uncomfortable with people using this hashtag, asking why there is a disregard for the security of Aboriginal women in Canada, or the importance of having gender parity… let’s have a positive and constructive discussion about it.

Difference in thoughts and opinions are guaranteed to happen since we are all different individuals. However, respect should be a mandatory foundation instead of a luxury given to a select few.

Peace, Love and Happiness y’all.

Can you hear me?

I’ve been having this re-occurring thought/feeling lately… Do you get it?

In 2016, I started to post photos on Instagram with captions of song lyrics. I try to put the lyrics in context with the photo, but sometimes it’s just a song I’ve been listening to at the time. One of the reasons why I started doing this is because I wanted to express myself without having to say ‘look at me’. As someone who identifies pretty strongly as an INTJ, I really do have a hard time explicitly talking about my own feelings and sharing what’s on my mind. Partly because it feels unnatural for me, partly because I question if I make sense to others (aka will they understand). However, I feel like song lyrics can always convey a meaning/feeling that’s pretty universal yet also personal in a way.

I think we all have that innate need to not only tell our story, but also know we’re being heard and understood. I think as a more introverted person living in an extroverted society, it can be a little difficult getting that validation. Although I may not shout or share every moment or thought, it’s really does feel good sometimes knowing that someone is paying attention. I have my support system that will listen to what I have to say. But I can’t deny the want/need of hearing a “that’s a good idea” or “you’re cool” from a complete stranger every now and then… knowing that my social awkwardness hasn’t made be a pariah to the human fabric of this world.

You Don’t Complete Me

I recently went to a dinner party attended by some of my nearest and dearest friends. Always a nice pick-me-up, especially considering we haven’t all been together in spot in a very long time. What made this dinner a different was was a +1 affair. Everyone was encouraged to bring their significant other and after dinner there would be some party games. Although it probably didn’t stick out to my friends, I was the odd man out with no +1 to accompany me. I have no significant other, no major romantic love interest… nada.

I had a fun time and my lack of accompaniment was a total non-issue for the night. However, it did provoke some thoughts about love, relationships and romantically involved significant others. I’ve come to realise (a long while ago actually) that my views on love are quite different than the norm. These views that tend to stop me from the desire to pursue romantic endeavours with absolute seriousness.

My main views are this:

  • I don’t believe in someone being my “better half” or completing me
  • I think it’s totally possible to have more than 1 “soulmate” and not have said soulmate be someone you’re romantically involved with
  • I do value the ideals of companionship and love but… meh, I’m lazy.

I think for these reasons, I find myself not much into dating. Any when I do date… it doesn’t end well (HAHAHA!). Most people I mention some of these views to tend think it’s because I haven’t been in a serious relationship or found “true love”. And you know what, this could be very true! But at the same time, I feel like North American social norms keep telling me that I need to find someone to start a family with (-_-)…

I chalk up my viewpoints on love/relationships to a few things in my life. I’m a super introverted & independent person. The type of person who would go without if I couldn’t do something on my own. I don’t really see myself being “fulfilled” by being with someone’s husband & dad. Those are titles I may have one day but would never solely define myself with… at least not in this point in time.

Am I jaded? Am I going against the flow? Have I just not found “the one” yet?

I guess time will tell…


The New Guy

People around me know that I embrace change and I’m a fairly confident person. However, one thing that makes me uneasy is being the new guy. Walking into a situation/environment where you are the only new variable is nerve wracking for me. 

I recently started working with a new department at my company. Although I knew of my future coworkers, I didn’t know them. I was very nervous how I would fit in with the rest, if they would like me and etc. I guess I wasn’t as confident as I thought I was. 

From this new “new guy” experience, I learned a few things about being the situation and myself. I realised how great a new beginning can be. It’s a chance to redefine yourself, motivation to make the changes you talked about but didn’t start… just a fresh,  clean page.

+Positive Vibes Only+

A lot of my friends will tell you that I’ve changed a lot over the years. One of the biggest changes is that I made a conscious decision to make myself happy. It’s a decision that took a lot of work though. I spent a lot of time thinking about what happiness is and means to me and how to achieve that feeling. The number one thing I learned is that I need to be positive and stay positive. I think it’s easy to underestimate the role of your state of mind in our everyday life since we usually don’t put conscious thought into it.

To me, it’s important to be positive because of the binary system of positivity vs. negativity. By being negative, you’re not really doing anything to help yourself get out of the situation you’re in or change the circumstances. You’re literally stopping in your tracks saying “I am defeated, this is the end, there’s nothing I can do”. However, being positive in my opinion is acknowledging that there is a chance of a happy outcome or that things may not be as horrible as you see them right this second.

I’ve been asked a lot over the past year how I am able to be so positive all the time. (That was actually a weird sentence to type out. Not boasting, but it’s really is a question I’ve been getting a lot lately!) So here is my unofficial guide to those glorious positive vibes.

#1) Being positive is a choice. We could debate this, but I firmly believe that you need to choose to be positive. It’s the first step to acknowledging that you can do it, that there is a way out, that it’s not a hopeless cause. By choosing to stay positive, you’re giving yourself a stepping stone towards an outcome in your favour.

#2) Being positive takes work. We all want good things to fall into our lap out of the sky. But the reality is, 99.99% of things take work. Positivity is no different. Staying positive goes against our primal human instincts of worrying about what’s next, jumping to conclusions and seeing the big picture (IMHO). That’s why positivity needs to be a conscious effort. You constantly have to remind and motivate yourself to stay positive. 

 #3) It’s okay to be sad and have negative emotions. It’s unrealistic to say we can all be happy and positive 100% of the time. Situations come up, life happens, and shit hits the fan. I think it’s important to acknowledge your feelings of sadness/anger/depression. At the same time, I think it’s unproductive to dwell on them too long… you need to acknowledge and move on. And that takes you back to step #1!

 All in all, this is just my viewpoint. I’m in no way saying I’m perfect or discreding mental health issues. This is just a system that has worked for me.

Putting the ‘Hi” in Hiatus

It’s been a while!

The end of summer brought about a lot of changes, challenges and learning. And while I thought about updating my online journal, time did not permit. However, I’m back!

We’ll see how things develop with this reboot 🙂