18, 04, 2017

Happiness


Even as you get older the appetite for living and filling it with adventures and dreams never really dies down, but as responsibilities grow, priorities change. Some people choose to keep their dreams going, or at least put them on hold for a bit, while others choose to believe that they’re only dreams and nothing more. Being a dreamer and a free-spirit especially as an adult aren’t easy when you’re not surrounded by those who are like-minded. Although the people you surround yourself with make a difference, it’s also important to stick up for what you believe in and to never doubt your feelings. Whether we admit it to ourselves or not, adolescence never really goes away.

Over the last few years, I realized constantly looking for happiness makes you unhappy. You set up an expectation to find it without actually knowing what you’re looking for. I personally spent more time trying to look for and figure out this mysterious happiness instead of looking and seeing it all around me. I also took a step back and realized that the things that I found joy in are the things I don’t do anymore or not enough of. That’s when I decided to make a list (in no particular order):

— 5 Things I Wanted to Be/Do When I Was Growing Up:
    1. Dancer
    2. Photographer
    3. Multicultural/Traveller
    4. Rock Star
    5. Writer

This list that I keep on a piece of paper with me at all times is a reminder of all the things I wanted to do and can still do to this day — that’s if I choose to make them priorities. We always convince ourselves that we’re too busy to do this and that, but the truth is that we always will make time for the things we actually want to do.

Do the exercise: Grab a pen and write down on a piece of paper of your, “5 Things I Wanted to Be/Do When I Was Growing Up” . Once you’re done, review it and think about how you can incorporate each one into your life again. Just to give you some ideas, I’ve broken down my list and how I’ve added each one into my everyday life.

1. Something that keeps me physically healthy and active: Dancing
As a child and into my teens, dance was a very big part of my life; and so it came as a big surprise when I lost it along the way. Since January of this year, I fell back in love with a lot of Latin dances such as Salsa, Merengue, and Bachata; also Zumba has been a fun additional mixture of pop and fitness moves as well. After getting back into the swing of things (literally), I realized how happy it makes me feel — so much so that I’ve made it a high-priority in my life by making sure I take at least 5 days a week for it. I absolutely feel the greatest when I’m dancing!

2. Something that keeps me artistic: Photography
Before I took blogging seriously, I was really focused on launching my career as a freelance Photographer; in fact, I briefly worked for local fashion and lifestyle magazines in my city. Every moment was a learning experience that also made me realize that it was a really tough career, and wasn’t something I wanted to continue doing in the long run. Long hours, free to minimal pay with no overtime, and also not being able to always share my create input took a toll. Although I quit photography as a career, I still love it dearly to bits as a hobby. The photos you see on my blog are mere reflections of my vision and what I enjoy doing.

3. Something that keeps me learning: Travel & Learning about Different Cultures and Languages
In my early 20s, I spent a lot of time learning and studying about different cultures, languages, and traveling around the world. Aside from visiting new countries, I needed to know about the people, how they live on the daily, and who they were. Travel and learning about one’s culture not only keeps your eyes opened, but your mind as well. Raincoast Books and Lonely Planet were kind enough to send me over two of their recently released books: Lonely Planet 50 Festivals To Blow Your Mind, and Lonely Planet 50 Places To Stay To Blow Your Mind, to keep my heart yearning for more. The desire to travel to India to experience what it’s like to become a beautiful mess in Holi (the Festival of Colour) has grown on me, as well as watching the soothing Floating Lantern Festival along the beaches of Ala Moana Beach in Hawaii. And since I’m all about unique and unusual experiences of any city, to blend in with nature at the Montaña Mágica Lodge in Huilo-Huilo, Chile seems cool; or go back to Tokyo and stay in a capsule hotel in Shinjuku would also suit my quirky tastes.

4. Something that keeps me musical: Playing Guitar
I know I mentioned that I wanted to be a rock star, but to be honest, I don’t think I really knew which direction I wanted to take it in as a teenager. I did know that I originally wanted to learn how to play drums, but since that can be a bit too loud for parents who aren’t fond of loud music, an electric guitar was the next best thing (yes, it’s still loud but we had to meet in the middle somewhere). I never thought I would return to learning and playing with the guitar, however I’m really glad I decided to pick it up again.

5. Something that keeps me writing: Blogging
I can still recall the first time I wrote and illustrated my very first Power Rangers comic book, to the times when I wrote daily on my LiveJournal where I shared a mixture of my own original poetry, songs, and teen angst. Despite how imperfect my grammar can still be, and what genre I’m writing about, I’ve basically been writing my entire life, and have always enjoyed every moment of it. Fun fact: The Bambi Eyes is actually the second blog I’ve owned — she-cries.com, which doesn’t exist anymore (if you were an emo/scene kid and know the band Rufio), was my first “blog” where I wrote daily. I leave quotations on the word blog because at that time everything on the internet was just called a website. Anyways back to the main point, when you find yourself always coming back to something or realizing it’s always been there, then I truly believe it’s meant to be.

If you’d like to share one of the things you wanted to be from your list I’d love to know!


9 responses to “Happiness”

  1. Serene says:

    Awww this was such an incredible post Stacey <3! I LOVE this exercise I think one of the top things I wanted to be as a kid was definitely a singer LOL! And although I'm not blessed with the greatest of singing voices, I still don't take life to seriously and still sannnng my heart out! I love how you've incorporated each into your daily life as an adult <3! Such a lovely read babe! ❤️ Xoxo
    Serene | iamserenel.com

    • Stacey says:

      Ahhh you wanted to be a singer!! I bet you’re just being modest and you can sing your heart out! Were you inspired by Britney Spears or Spice Girls as well?!? I just wanted to be in a girl group and dance but I knew I couldn’t sing so I’d probably be the background girl LOL

  2. I love this post and the idea behind it! Just like you I was searching for happiness for a long time until I realised it was making me unhappy. When we set happiness as a goal, we forget that it’s an emotion and not a mood – it is short-lasting and occurs in the moment and no one could possibly be happy 24/7. Unless we interpret happiness as being ‘content’. I have wanted to learn to play the guitar for ages and for reason I have never done it – your post has inspired me to try again. Other childhood dreams were being an author/blogger (which I’m partly achieving through my blog although I would love to write fiction), being a photographer and a traveller. xx

    113thingstosay.com

    • Stacey says:

      Ahh, you’re comment was a bit of a tear jerker for me because I felt that exact way you just wrote out! Playing guitar is a lot fo fun! I think ukulele’s are pretty cool too though. Well from what I see in your blog a lot of your childhood dreams already came true!

  3. yuka says:

    this is such a great idea! I will have to dig deep in the memory bank and reapply some of those ideas into my life!

    http://www.prettyinleather.net

  4. 3 of those 5 things sounds a lot like what my 8 year wants to be. Me personally, I’ve always wanted to be a writer and look, now I’m fulfilling that dream by blogging . I love writing and being creative and I think my daughter gets that from me too. Great post hun! x Ann-Marie

  5. Akshita says:

    Stacey, I agree with so many of the things you just mentioned and loved knowing from your perspective as I feel I could relate a lot due to similar interests in photography, travel and blogging. I used to love dancing as well, and took 4 years of classes back during high school but then completely got out of it. It has been on my mind so much though since the past one year that I feel more motivated from reading your post and might just sign up for some classes downtown. Quite a lovely post to read, and nice to get to know you a little better as well 🙂 xo

    • Stacey says:

      Sorry for replying late but I’m so glad my post could help motivate you! Definitely as we get older we have fall outs on things that once made us happy because so many things in life get in the way instead. I hope you do sign up for those dance classes because ever since I started dancing again I feel more like myself yet again. What type of dance did you do before? I love to know your background in it as well!! xo

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