Subliminal Messaging: The Ultimate Mind Control

Here’s a fun fact: This was actually written as part of an assignment in my Consumer Behaviour course just a couple months back. This post is quite… extremely different from the stuff I usually post. It’s scarier than it is educational, just because it makes you question, “Are my thoughts really my thoughts… Or are they the thoughts that advertisers and marketers were paid to plant inside my head?” After being shown a video of Derren Brown’s deceptive experiment on two advertising experts in class, we saw that even the whimsical geniuses of deception (advertisers) are susceptible to subliminal messaging… Therefore, maybe we shouldn’t feel that bad, since the tricksters themselves are… tricked.

Sublime messages are messages that bypass to our subconscious/unconscious minds – with their ability to manipulate and control our reactions and thoughts of products. By appealing to our fears and desires on a subconscious level, society is less likely to critically ‘judge and analyse’ the underlying message that the product purports. Instead, they accept the product to some degree – even if they are not consciously aware of it at the time. As these messages are below our immediate perceptive threshold, and are usually presented with something that is more neutral at the conscious level – this pacifies our resistance to this form of advertising.

Why subliminal messaging works so effectively:

“With motivational research, they have found eight hidden needs in the human psyche: emotional security, reassurance of worth, ego-gratification, creative outlets, love objects, sense of power, sense of roots, and immortality.”

With much research conducted on the desires of human beings, advertisers are able to subliminally appeal to our desires at a subconscious level. A common appeal that is used is an appeal to our sexual desires. This may appear in the form of images, or even using double entendres, that consciously appear innocent, but upon further analysis can be seen to hold sexual connotations. Using these desires, advertisers are also able to reverse the process and appeal to our fears, such as losing our power or being unloved if a certain course of action is not undertaken.

Using techniques such as the Rorscharch ink blot test, Szondi test, Thematic apperception test, hypnosis and through the analysis of dreams and nightmares – advertisers are able to access our subconscious to some degree. Through this, they are able to assume desires and fears of their potential consumers. Once gaining access to information of desire, they can either manipulate consumers into believing the product holds the key to their desires – or alternatively, it can appeal to sense of fear, taking away something valued or even appealing to fear of death.

Unfortunately, within us we all have perceptual defense mechanisms that may block certain stimuli from entering our conscious mind. ‘Why is it unfortunate?’ you may ponder. It is unfortunate because it allows perceptual distortions/limitations in daily life to bypass our conscious awareness, and be stored in our subconscious, which holds a greater capacity. Although this isn’t directly harmful to our wellbeing, it influences the choices we make, and we can’t even exactly pinpoint why we are influenced to behave in a certain way, or why ‘instincts’ tell us to purchase a product.

Defense mechanisms work at multiple forms of our defenses including: repression, isolation, regression, fantasy formation, sublimation, denial, projection, and introjection. Where this benefits the advertiser is that they will embed the message in a way that may be offensive but associatively memorable at a personal level, and an individual may bring it back to consciousness when they physically see the product in a supermarket or shopping centre.

However! Not all is lost, my friends. Where the defense mechanisms drag us down, they also do stop us from going insane.

At the neurological level, when we are watching television/movies, we are more susceptible to subliminal messaging because our brain shifts to Alpha waves. This is a relaxed, meditative state where the audiences are generally passive and accepting of information. Especially with media, although some viewers are able to stay to some degree of alertness, others use watching TV as ‘wind down time’. In this state of mind they selectively choose not to focus on material at a completely conscious level (at Beta waves), instead their intent is just to be relaxed and absorbed in the world of the show. At this stage they are at their most vulnerable – the perfect time for an advertiser to strike and take advantage of the audience. Although there are laws stating that extreme degrees of deception are illegal – with subliminal messaging, it is often hard to provide sufficient evidence, as it can be dubbed as circumstantial, thus unintended.
Seriously though, talk about taking advantage of our vulnerabilities, those sly foxes.

It scares me a little that my ‘instincts’ may… and probably are built on the basis of deception and lies… But, hey, go perceptual defense systems for not letting me go crazy.

Also, the following are areas of behaviour that are influenced by subliminal messaging sourced from ‘Subliminal Advertising and Modern Day Brainwashing’ by Dr Lechnar: conscious perception, emotional response, drive-related behaviours, adaptation levels, verbal formulations, memory, perceptual defenses, dreams, psychopathology, and purchasing and consumption behaviour. Highly recommend you click on the link, it’s a long read but it’s super informative.

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Don’t be a child

In my eyes, it’s usually all fun and games until somebody whips out the ‘I can do it better’ card. Then this little gremlin inside you slowly starts to claw its way out of your body to unleash madness upon the world. For example, you say you ran 10kms in an hour, they say they can do it in 10 minutes. Then you’re just sitting there thinking… ‘Is this guy for real?’ I mean, why is it so necessary for these few people in the world to just not appreciate the fact that you’re proud of yourself?! IS IT THAT HARD TO LET A PERSON BE HAPPY?!

Scenario:
You’re pleased that you’ve learnt how to land a double back-flip. Fantastic. You’ve been trying to master the disciplined artistry of double back-flipping for as long as you can remember. From the corner of your eye, you see your friend looking all smug. Arms crossed, standing in an overly confident manner… they finally muster, “I can do that better.” In that very moment, you’re thinking,

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It’s times like these you just wonder, “Is this really necessary? Is there any real need to snuff out my candle then light my house on fire?” I mean, it’s all well and good if somebody is better than you at something, but it’s that moment they feel the need to voice it that you feel your friendship crumbling into a pile of nothing. Well, there’s no real need to be cut up about these things, because chances are there will and will always be someone who’s better than you at something, and that’s okay. In fact, it’s more than okay. It allows personal growth and all that beautiful stuff. However, it’s that instance where you’re so proud of your accomplishment – not even with the intention to get everybody bowing at your feet – that when somebody decides to one-up you every single time, you’ve just had enough.

Now, why does this childish act annoy me more than when a kid decides to pee in the sandbox? It’s because it becomes this unnecessary evaluation of what you thought of as a feat. Even a nod of approval would suffice. However, these egotistical butt-nuggets find that it’s imperative to rack through their brains, going through that effort of stringing a sentence of words together to make you think you’re not that great. When really, you are… Seriously, you go, Glen Coco.

In all seriousness though, the only person who you can truly beat is yourself. I still encounter these people more often than I’d like… Some who are actually children, which is fair enough. Then some who are adults… Which I’m very slowly learning to deal with. Maybe these boisterous, overly-confident types are crucial to our functioning as human beings… in a way that may not make sense to any of us. If there’s anything I can learn from these situations, it’s to not stoop to their level. Perhaps one day they say they can do a back-flip off a one-storey house, whilst you can do it off the Eureka sky deck. Don’t voice that you’re better than them, even if you know they do it all the time. You don’t want to carry on that flame that starts a whole chain-of-comparisons going. Just be proud of them, however hard it is, because the most important thing is to carry on your ideals.

This goes with everything else in life. If something annoys you; accept that it’s part of this person, try not to punch them in the face… Just, grit your teeth and go with it. There are several flaws in everybody which makes each and every person unique and different. Actually hating on people because of silly things like this is just showing a complete lack of acceptance, disrespect for them as a person and this desire to change them to fit your ideals. Appreciate the differences in everyone and learn to love everybody in the best way that you can… Even if it takes a long time.

Sure, get annoyed and picture something really embarrassing happening to them… But, be sure to let it go. Don’t hate them. Not everybody’s perfect and not everybody’s minds function the same. In the end, we’re all just seeking people who accept us for all our differences.

Until next time,
Kylie x.

The little things

It doesn’t matter how much money you have, what clothes you own, what car you drive or what house you live in. These are material possessions that we’re going to leave without eventually. In the end, the things that do truly matter in life are the love of the people you surround yourself with, the memories you make and the experiences you have. These things, you can still look back and immerse yourself in even when you’re 105 years old and ungraciously drooling from the mouth.

In saying this, I feel that there’s no greater importance than living every moment like it’s the first and last day of your life. This doesn’t mean spend big and not plan ahead, obviously those things are still important for sustenance. What I mean is, make all the actions and choices based on what you would do if today was your last day on earth. Make the most of every day by having that sense of excitement or exhilaration when you first did that thing, as well as choosing the things you do as if it would be the last thing you could do.

Obviously, this is not always achievable. Nobody wants to be at uni or at work if it was the last thing they could do (no judgement if it is). However, know why you do these things. Do the things that you love and enjoy… And if you don’t love it or know the reason behind why you’re doing it, then you should consider leaving it. However, please don’t misinterpret this message as not committing to things even if it’s necessary to achieving that thing that you what you want to do/be. There’s a massive difference between working hard (and at times struggling) to get to the place where you want to be in life and simply not liking it. What I’m suggesting is, do things purposefully. If you know that there’s a light at that end of the tunnel, keep going ahead… But if all you see is a gaping black hole, then maybe it’s time to move on. There’s no point slaving away at a job for 30 years, only to look back and wonder what you’ve been doing with your whole life. I’m still young, but I’m living by the policy of cutting off all the things that make me feel crappy in life; whether it be people who are dragging me down or a job that makes me feel majorly stressed out. Seriously, ain’t nobody got time for that.

Don’t hold grudges.
At the pinnacle of my angst-ridden teenage years, I can remember hearing so many people ‘not liking’ somebody because ‘they looked at them weirdly this one time’. I’d also hear a lot of people passing off judgement about others and feel no shame whatsoever. Being judgemental is unnecessary hatefulness that is the reflection of our own insecurities. By being judgemental, we’re so completely self-aware and scared of other people’s perception of us that we don’t let ourselves do things that make us break character. When we judge other people, what we are really voicing is our want for them to change who they are. We want them to change to reflect someone who fits our ideals… And in turn, we fear that others judge us and want us to change.

By building a facade of what we think is perfect or living in fear of other’s perceptions of us, we don’t let ourselves truly live and do things that could be potentially life-changing. I think this is such an important concept, because naturally we all care about what others think about us. It’s okay to a point, but the moment it starts to become debilitating and stops you from doing the things you truly want to do, that’s when you should get that shit sorted. It frustrates me so much when people don’t live the lives they want to live because they’re scared of what others might think of them. You’re not living their lives, you’re living yours. You shouldn’t let their judgements or potential judgements dictate your life.

Appreciate the transient nature of time and everything that surrounds it.
Time is fleeting, and every moment we waste doing nothing can’t be bought back. With this, everything else that follows the liquid state of time is also momentary. The movement of the clouds, the direction of the wind, even the path of a bird… it’ll never be that exact replicative pattern ever again. So, learn to not dwell on the things that you can’t grasp. Alternatively, be grateful for everything that crosses your path. Try to think about the simple pleasures of life, instead of trying to go against the natural state of things. It’s so much more fulfilling to just live and enjoy the moment rather than spending every moment of everyday thinking about the past or what might be in the future.

Not even going to lie, it’s insanely difficult to slip into a rhythm of constant gratitude and appreciation as it’s become so foreign to our society. With the hustle and bustle of our everyday lives, many of us don’t think we have the time to enjoy every moment, especially as it’s become one of those things that we need to pull it into our conscious awareness every time… But, how I see it is, every little moment counts. The smallest things have the power to make us happy, yet, we still let it slip by us because we’re dwelling too much on the things that don’t matter in life.
So, I challenge you to live in the present. To take more pleasure in the small things in life.

Until next time, my friends.
Kylie x.

The Tango of Equality & Convenient Labels

This was actually drafted a few weeks ago, so it may seem like a bit outdated, but I only just decided to post it… well, now:

It has recently come to my attention how much shit Miley Cyrus is still getting for appearing like a deranged cow on the VMAs.
Then there was something about a letter from Sinead O’Connor, then something about feminism yada, yada, yada.

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Don’t get me wrong, I’m a strong advocate for equality and all those serious matters… but I feel like people are starting to spout all this nonsensical bullshit and then deciding to throw a label on it calling it ‘female empowerment’ as if to detract from their own douchebag-gery. I feel like what is happening at this very day and age in such a westernised society is that we’re doing some sort of ‘Tango of Equality’.

We take one step forward from the previous generations and we gain respect as females. Gone are the days when women are believed to have this innate mysterious attachment to this thing called a… What is it called… A kitchen…?
We’re given choices, rights and we no longer need to sit in the backseat of society. Sure, there’s still a fair way to go, but people fail to see how much of a patriarchal society we no longer live in. For those people who live under a rock, we aren’t in a society where we must bend to the every whim and woe of men as if our lives depended on it.

However… We then take two steps back after coming so far. I mean, if you’ve got sex appeal and you feel completely and unadulteratedly in love with your body, then flaunt it… In a way that is acceptable in public. The badly coordinated PR stunts that are being pulled to throw Miley into the limelight are not what I would classify as acceptable… And it’s not exactly doing much good for our fight for greater equality. I mean, I felt like I had to eat a bar of soap after watching her VMA performance and even seeing screenshots of her Wrecking Ball MV just to feel a little cleaner.

It’s perfectly, 100% fine for Miley to want to change her image of an innocent, Disney child star into a sexy, fun-loving young adult… But, is she really commanding the respect of everyone around her? F@$k no. Pardon my French, but seriously, she continually tries to defend her actions or passing her behaviour off as some form of female empowerment… But all I’m seeing are heaps of naked photos, tongue-sticking-out photos, inappropriate sexualised carvings of jack-o-lanterns and all that stuff I don’t really want to see. I mean, shit, if you want to be empowering, that is bloody awesome. However, if one moment you act like a role model and the next you’re gyrating on a married man on a public stage… Then, I don’t really see the empowerment in that.
(Note: Okay, so I’m aware that the ‘man behind the booty’ has just as much fault in this whole shabang, and I would love to further my rant, but I’ll probably go off topic… So, we’ll save that for another time. )

This brings me to the ‘Wrecking Ball’ music video. Oh, dear lord, throw some clothes on. I understand how there may be the tiniest, most minuscular amount of symbolism behind her nakedness depicting vulnerability (as she explained in an interview)… Except for the fact her hair and make-up is all immaculately styled… Her skin is flawless… And the fact that she’s licking a hammer. Maybe I’m getting a little critical, but there are much more refined and beautiful ways of symbolically representing vulnerability without having to get naked and sit on a massive ball. My aim here isn’t to attack her, but just merely demonstrate that you can’t carelessly pass off inappropriate antics as meaningful symbolism.

For all those wondering if I dislike her… No way. I don’t know her, or all the things she’s been through. Me disliking her makes about as much sense as me hearing about a movie for the first time and saying I hate it. It makes about as much sense as boiling a potato without water. IT MAKES NO SENSE. I just feel that getting naked then screaming, “I AM FEMALE EMPOWERMENT… EMBRACE ME, WORLD.” doesn’t send across a clear cut message of equality… It’ll probably just land you in jail for public indecency and a whole lot of people losing respect for you and potentially other females.

I guess what I’m trying to focus on is that, yes, it’s fine if you want to be naked and sit on massive wrecking balls.  It’s also fine if you want to change the image that you have because that’s what you want to do. It’s also flippin’ fantastic if you hope to be a role model to be all the little people of the world. However, what is not okay is when artists and public figures make abominable claims about doing it to ’empower’ and to fight for ‘freedom’ and ‘equality’ when all they are doing is just being wildly inappropriate and shaming the human race. If you aim to empower, do it with grace, dignity and in a way that commands respect. You can’t empower if you’re advocating the very thing you appear to be opposing through your behaviour.

Oh, and I realised I went off on a bit of a tangent, but this is essentially my perspective on how little misdoings like this don’t really advocate for gender equality. Although I predominantly focused on females, this applies to males as well (just go back to the beginning of the post, substitute in ‘male’ for ‘female’ and put it into context that makes logical sense…. and tada, you have yourself the other perspective).
Careless behaviour of people, not just celebrities, can put females and males to shame and give reasons for society to not be able to take the respective genders very seriously.

This time last year…

I guess you could call this an extremely delayed typical graduation speech… But, these are what my final thoughts of graduating were…. And what I still feel when I look back on my last days today.  A reflection of a very important paragraph in the chapter of my life, if you will.

On this very day last year, it was one of the most daunting, yet most exhilarating days in my life thus far. Although, I’m sure that many… or most people were pumped to be done with high school, I almost instantaneously felt like a kid lost in a shopping centre. I was suddenly in a world without the routine that I had followed for the past 13 years of my life. I felt lost.

It was one of those days that any sane high school kid would count down the days ’till… and the thing is, I did. Except, I didn’t realise how much I didn’t want those last days to come… until I started willing the seconds to drag in to hours. That’s the moment when you realise you’ve gone bat-shit crazy. I would walk around the hallways passively thinking about how ‘this time… next week, this won’t be my locker anymore’ and ‘this is the last second-last tuesday I will ever have of high school’… and this scared me so much.

Backtrack 2 years to 2011, I remember sitting with one of my best friends on a ramp outside the gym, drinking our iced coffees, watching the Year 12s wreak havoc on the school thinking about how ‘this time next year… that’s gonna be us’. As we stared at a year 12s artistic drawing of a penis on the backboard of a basketball hoop… I was already starting to feel a little scared of the year ahead.

Then, let’s skip forward again… Except not too forward. At this very moment last year, I was over at one of my best friend’s houses drinking my heart out, ‘getting ready’ for muck up day. I was eating pizza with my close group of high-school friends by a pool… sitting on a red couch we had taken from somebody’s hard-rubbish pile just a few hours back. We were talking about nothing of substance for ages, and we were all pumped to get high school ‘done and dusted’. Then in a few hours, I would wake up early, make a labyrinth in the Year 9 locker bays wearing a moustache and a sombrero. Then after walking through the guard of honour for our final assembly, I’d get home, conk out on my bed for a few hours then get ready to go to our valedictory dinner.

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The thing is, I hate change. This is the only reason I was dreading walking in to our final assembly on that day. If I could, I would go back and do the same boring shit I did in high school everyday… Except life doesn’t permit these perpetuating pitstops, which is just bloody fantastic. Seriously, though… it is. Otherwise I’d be comfortably looping the easy years of life again and again.

However, of course I must do that whole ‘reflective thing’ and look back at all the times I did enjoy in all my schooling years. I did enjoy the free breakfasts every Wednesday. Then that crappy coffee machine in the Senior School kitchen. I loved hanging out in the art rooms (yes, I was one of those kids), and the hierarchical system that went on in the school buses.

I know this is also a very cliche thing to say, but a year has gone by and I still stand by this. I couldn’t have asked for a better group of people to have in my cohort. I didn’t speak to all of them, but I enjoyed how reputable we were for being the laziest year level… In the history of all year levels. I also loved how one of my favourite teachers was chuckling at the fact I was bawling my eyes out whilst walking through that guard of honour. Although sometimes I may miss school like crazy, I’m grateful for every person that made those moments so memorable… Then to all those people who have shaped me to become what I am today.

… Now, a toast to the future… and my undying dread of those ‘last moments’ in life.

Kylie. x

Paying homage to Katherine Mansfield | A Girl’s Play

Much respect to the late Katherine Mansfield. I dig her writing and
her crazy life adventures.  Originally written for Literature during VCE    where we had to adapt to Katherine’s style of writing… Or attempt to…

Now, enjoy! 

A Girl’s Play

On a Sunday afternoon Laney kneeled on the soft, green grass as she leaned over to pick a daisy from the pond. Her lush hair swinging back and forth – back and forth brushing against the dirt as a soft swirl of dust settled against her little black shoes. A bell on the tall clock tower tolled, a deep groaning noise.

Bringing her hands under her skirt, she swooped it over the edge of the seat – the hem of her dress puddling on the velvet floor. And like a little blue bird, she lifted her chin high, looking over the tall heads of the suited gentlemen, until finally she perched her chin in her hands staring through their bodies onto the stage. The audience hushed as the lights dimmed.

A spotlight signalled the gentleman in the black suit to take careful steps from behind the curtains towards the mahogany desk, careful steps – getting him nowhere. Soaking in the lilting essence of the leather that wafted from the chairs he suddenly stopped. Her breath caught and she gave a tiny yelp. Falling, falling – he dropped on all fours like a suited cat. Thud! “Oh no! The tragedy!” he crawled!

A woman sneezed nearby, her wrinkly, shaking hands reaching into her coat sleeve. Laney, startled, turned calmly back to the stage, only to have her eyes caught by the sight of a woman elegantly leaning into the giant man, gazing dreamily into his eyes as he whispered into her hair. Laney blushing a deep crimson – shook her head as her soft curls gently fell around her face, framing perfectly. With a skilled flick of her wrist, she released the yellow lolly, puckering her lips as she turned towards the stage once more.

The crawling man stretched a long arm, reaching the lowest desk drawer, tenderly drawing it open. The actor gently patted the affected wood until he found a little black piano. The gentleman opened the piano case – looking deeply upon the aged yellow keys, and howled out like a wounded animal. Hunched and towering over the little piano that was too small for him now, the man played. Seas of people snorted with terrible shrieks of laughter ruthlessly engulfing the ugly piano noises that spurted from the stage floor. Oh! How it ached. How terribly it ached! Her lips trembled and her eyes quivered – but she mustn’t cry. Oh no, she mustn’t.

You see, she too had a little black piano gathering dust on a shelf – the keys grown stiff and the strings brittle from years of disuse. With a quivering, unsteady hand, she would pry the piano lid open with a creak before it snapped shut with a clap. She liked to dream, though. With floating clouds of thoughts echoing through her mind, uncaught, what it must be like to play again.

The lights flickered on swallowing the entirety of the room as the curtains slithered down with a hiss. The audience broke into applause, the sounds of their hands like relentless drops of rain pattering against a rooftop. Like a bird about to take flight, Laney leaned forwards, with the tip of her toes pressing hard against the floor, before turning to leave the room. Laney walked closer towards the tall opened oak doors that welcomed her as the bitter warmth bid her farewell. The perfectly dull light revealed her golden strands of hair struggling to be noticed among the grey. The crevices and folds of skin starkly coming forth like a draggled weight on the frail body – covering like a veil that shielded the expired youth that was herself.

Running up to the lady was a little girl with an impish smile, the juices of strawberries dribbling fast down her face – the bliss of the child only merely reflected in the old lady’s eyes. The lady reached down to the child, only to grab a handful of air as the child turned to run back into the room. Hobbling, the old lady reached her seat, falling fast and hard into the seat.

The curtains rising fast, revealed the man once more. The man entered the stage in a black suit – his slick hair pooling against his red face. His eyes glazed, yet emotionless. Clasping his chest, so silently, vulnerably – Laney could feel the blood running through his veins like a clam of steam rushing out of a boiling kettle. The bulging vessels on his forehead pulsing so violently. And his hands, oh his hands! Clammy and shaking! Shutting her eyes tight, but never tight enough. Had he lost his wife? Yes, he had indeed! The tragedy! Oh, the tragedy!

Laney had also lost a lover. The doctor pressing her hands hard against her lover’s back as the terrible cough of his clawed out of his chest like a frenzied cat trying to claw its way out of water. The wheezing sound he had made was Life itself heaving out of him in one final gush. Silently that night she let the curtains fall and stored away her piano one last time.

The man in a terrible fit of despair, showed nothing as he paced the length of his room. Finally, one silent tear escaped his empty gaze. It’s drop shattering into a thousand shards of liquid emotion – he quickly placed a finger and absorbed what was left. The gentlemen in the crowd tried to conceal their despair as they held fast onto their lovers with their blubbering faces.

Laney wrapped her arms around herself as a smother of warmth blanketed her as she stared desolately into the perpetuating darkness of the room. Is it possible to feel so completely and irreparably vacant even in the midst of a crowd? She watched the actor take a worn coat from a hook, placing it on himself before retiring from the room. The curtains fell and the audience applauded and soon Laney was left cradling herself. The little impish girl ran up to the old lady, tugging on her dress. ‘Are we leaving yet, granmama?’ said the little girl. The corners of Laney’s mouth drooped as she looked towards the door. ‘You rud along first, by little dear. Gradmama must stretch out her joints.’ said Laney with an affected drawl.

As she hobbled to the tall oak doors, the chilling air brushed against her as she shivered. She looked back one more time towards the silent stage, as her sigh was carried away with the bitter wind.

http://dailypost.wordpress.com/2013/10/14/daily-prompt-homage/

Lesson 3: Accepting the good, the bad and the ugly.

Our lives are made up of fleeting moments that are the embodiment of our experiences that define us… and one of the things that has helped me enjoy good times and get through the bad times is knowing the fact that nothing is ever lasting.

The phrase “This too shall pass” is a proverb that so beautifully encapsulates the transient nature of our states of emotion.
This has taken quite a turn from my first couple of posts where I get by with saying, ‘stop being a little bitch’ a lot more than necessary… mainly because I’ve never really felt so attuned with a phrase before.

I realised that this has basically been my motto in life, except I’ve never seen it so perfectly and simply put together, until I saw that one of my favourite dancers had it tattooed onto the inside of her wrist. This then caused me to sporadically think of all the times I’ve thought of this to get me through the little struggles of like… such as just before I get an injection, that painful moment when my toe collides with the corner of the bed, and passing through that dreaded feeling of possible failure. It even applies to the positive things, such as winning an award, going to a formal, partying and all that fun stuff. Regardless of the positive and negative states of emotion we’re in, it will inevitably pass.

So, what has this phrase taught me apart from that all my happiness can and will be taken away from me in the same way a toy is taken from a child?
It has taught me to relish in all the chances and opportunities I’ve been given. Not to dwell on the negatives, or to take the positives for granted. It’s helped me to embrace sadness, anger and frustration… Allowing me to get passed anxiety and those moments where I’m so stressed I feel like I’m literally dying. As you may… or may not have read from my last post, it has especially allowed me to stop letting fear of failure have so much dominance over my life.

This leads me to Phase 2: Embrace it, then let it go.
As I hope I’ve made this point clear enough, moments are fleeting and dwelling on them for prolonged periods of time is just allowing you to miss out on other events that are just as crucial. So, when we are in a massive shit-stain of a moment, it’s inevitable that we must overcome it, but firstly we must embrace it.

If any of you have read “Tuesdays With Morrie” by Mitch Albom, you would’ve read that in Morrie’s final months before death, he learnt to embrace the fear of death, to understand and accept it, then finally learning to detach himself from it. My interpretation of this put into everyday context is that when you are experiencing something so negative that eats away at your soul… don’t let it dominate you. Understand the shodiness you’re feeling and know that you can overcome it. Then after understanding how crap you’re feeling, allow yourself a moment to get it all out of your system… But, don’t dwell on it. You want to be left with something that allows you to grow as a person and hopefully changes you for the better, not something that haunts you at every twist and turn of life.

The reason I’ve written this post today is partially due to the phrase, ‘This too shall pass’… That, and as a public appreciation of my mother and father’s kick-ass parenting skills. Whenever it comes to the time where I’m so stressed out that I’m panicking… Like a little bitch (sorry, it had to be done), my parents will tell me that it’s okay to stress/cry/panic… However, after I get it all out of my system, I need to let it go and not to dwell on it. By dwelling on it, you’re just allowing yourself another reason for pointless self-loathing, another chance to relive and regret the choices you’ve made in life… But frankly, it’s completely useless and unfortunately nobody currently possesses the ability to time-travel and change all those bad decisions.

I’ve noticed that I focus a lot on ‘overcoming the negatives’, but this, too, applies to those feelings of great joy. Except, I don’t really feel the need to tell you guys how to enjoy yourself, since you can probably figure that out all on your own. What I will point out is that in moments of great joy, you need to make the most of it. You need to take that bundle of joy, and turn it into a mother-f$%^in’ rainbow.

Until next time, mis amigos.

Kylie. x

Lesson 2: Peace of Mind

Perspective. It’s one of those crucial internal measures that lets us organise our thoughts, opinions and feelings – allowing us to reassess and reevaluate the importance of our problems in everyday life. It allows us to realise the insignificance of our worries and allows us one step closer to coming to peace and acceptance of ourselves.

FIRST OF ALL… I must clarify that the worries I speak of are the ones that cause me everyday stress and hold me back from feeling completely at ease. I can’t truly define what this means for you, but for me, I just end up feeling only 80% of myself and not being able to completely and openly embrace all the good and bad things in my life. In other words, I become quite the whiny bastard, and for lack of better words, feel like like a general pile of poop.

Okay, so where this whole train of thought started was on the way home from the city. Cheesy or whatever, but it’s generally the time I allow myself to collect my thoughts and just… think. Sometimes it’s a bad thing, but sometimes it allows me to get to a complete and total philosophical, Confucius-like state where I think, “Damn, Kylie, you be brainy as hell.”

I started to think about how there’s essentially 2 more weeks left of Uni, then the dreaded exams are just around the corner. I thought about failure and all that bad stuff… But, then I started thinking about how lucky I was. I thought about how my problems seriously ain’t no thang. I thought about how the world’s care-factor for my problems probably ranked at the extreme far end of the ‘don’t give a @$%& zone’ on a scale that reached the billions.

As I hope you guys are all aware… there are over 7 billion people in the world, and everybody is basically a bundle of problems. Some people have real problems. The other end is us; the Gen-Y kids who are endowed with a pantry full of food, a closet full of clothes, technology within our grasp and a myriad of things we take for granted. As some poor third-world country child barely gets by in a week, we slave away on the internet, crying into our $100 bills thinking how much of a douche-bag the teacher back in Year 7 was for failing us in P.E.

By no means am I saying, “Hey you! Every time you’re feeling bad about your life, think about how unlucky that starving child is… and then start feeling good about yourself!” No. What I’m trying to get through is that you should put things into perspective. In comparison to somebody else’s problems, yours appears minuscular, but where it really counts is how much dominance you let it have over you.

Don’t hold yourself back from feeling happy.
This is something I’m still coming to terms with, but it’s something I hope future-Kylie will stick by.
There’s no point in being worried about failure or ‘that-thing-you-should’ve-done-that-one-time-but-didn’t’. There’s no worth in the ‘what ifs’ or ‘if I could go back in time’, because these thoughts hold you back from your full potential. Everything that you’ve done, felt or said in the past and the present shape who you are and who you are to become. Everything that you experience can be considered a growth. It’s really only what you make of it, if you want it to be a failure, it can be a failure. If you put it into the perspective of ‘bettering yourself’, then that’s what it’ll be.

Sure, you can feel crappy for a little bit and think about how your problem is the skid-mark on the underpants of society… but after that, be grateful for what you have, and don’t let the goings get you down. The only problems we have are the ones we allow to persist in our lives.

So, until next time, my friends!

Kylie out. x

Lesson 1: Stop being a little bitch

This is one of the phrases that one my best friends has told me repeatedly,
and it has proven one of the greatest phrases of them all.

The context of this particular conversation took place when I was feeling intimidated and aggravated at one point in my life and wanted to quit a job, but all I did was complain instead of just doing it. Admittedly, I was a little… No, I was massively taken aback the first time she said that to me… in my mind I was all like:

However, the more I thought about it, the more I realised how much it applies to everyday life. Being a little bitch doesn’t just apply to people who are spiteful and unpleasant – it also applies to those who dedicate a substantial patch of their life to telling others how much they don’t want to do things. Admittedly, I still do this occasionally… If fact, I’m sure I do it more often then I’d care to admit. Okay, scratch that. I still do complain quite a bit. The massive change is that I recognise when I’m acting like a little bitch and I try to put that energy into… well, not being a little bitch.

Bear with me on this, but this will have relevance in a second. What another wise person once told me was how anger is essentially passion that fuels proactivity in life. This doesn’t mean be angry and punch everyone in your path, it means that during an in depth conversation where a polarity of opinions occurs, you have a right to voice your opinion and open another person’s mind. So, you can either feel angry and crappy whilst not doing anything about it, or you can do things like go to gay-marriage rallies or get into some heated but mind-opening debate instead of just not doing anything about… anything.

Similarly to this, the fuel for our inactivity when it comes to school work in high-school, university assignments, cleaning your room or even getting back into a hobby – is the fuel and time that we use to bitch about not doing these things. Up until a week or two ago, I was on struggle street with assessments, work and my social life. In fact, there were many times I would want to break down and cry, complaining that I want to quit uni because it was too much for my little heart.

Where this all changed was when I actually started doing something useful other than complaining. What I realised was that complaining about not wanting to do stuff is like ripping off a band-aid. The pre-cursor leading up to the ripping of the band-aid is sooo much worse than it actually is. Being a university student and freshly finishing VCE, this mainly applies to doing assignments or studying for assessments. The quicker you just get into it, the quicker it’ll be over, and the faster you can move on with your life. So instead of slowly peeling off the band-aid and getting distracted by Facebook, Tumblr and Youtube, just rip it off all at once and you won’t have to feel that sensation of pain every time you go back to it.

Sure, it’ll still be sufficiently unpleasant and the greatest annoyance in your life, but the more you think about it, the more prolonged your agony will be. Whereas, if you just rip it off and get it over and done with, then you will feel a gaping load of relief.

So, let me break it down for you crazy kids:

Step 1: Problem recognition
(e.g. Uni work)

Step 2: Have a bit of a bitch about it, go cry a bit in a corner, demolish a tub of Ben&Jerry’s and 50 packets of Tim-tams if you must
(e.g. “I DON’T WANT TO DO IT. UNI ASSIGNMENTS SUCK MASSIVE BUTTHOLES. WAHHHHH.”)

Step 3: Stop being a little bitch and get yo’ shit together, son. 
(e.g. This is where you’re actually doing the damned thing without complaining about not wanting to do it)

Step 4: Repeat from Step 1

NOTE: Please feel free to skip Step 2 or combine Step 2&3 to get the most out of life.

You’re welcome.

Kylie out. x