Making friends versus being professional

I and, I think many people, have a pathological need for people to like me. Partially, I think because my natural instinct is to assume that no one on earth likes me and it’s a miracle when people do. I try, really hard. However, I also am attempting to be a working professional. I really want to be productive and work with people to reach a common goal. However, when I work with others I often get distracted by wanting to become friends with who ever I was working with.

You know when you are working in a group project and often end up hating those who can’t hold their weight in a project. It’s so easy to let professional feelings mess with personal feelings and vice versa. Just because a person isn’t your favorite doesn’t mean they aren’t good at their job.

Sometimes I feel like I take that mindset with me into my work life. I take on more work than is fair so people will like me more. It’s hard to find a balance between effectively doing my job and befriending those in my new job. It is a lot harder than I had initially anticipated. I want to balance my life, but being liked in my job is important cause you know politics and stuff.

Wish me luck.

Best Short Lived TV Shows

Happy mostly Summer, but technically Spring or as my still in college friends call it: Finals Season. What I always like during the summer season is to watch a lot of short TV Shows that I can binge in a weekend and then move on.

1. Terra Nova: I am still upset that this got cancelled but it’s an excellent story and the first season is a good and complete arc. It is the story of the family that goes back to a colony in the Jurassic Period because the Earth is dying. The CGI holds up especially since it was made for TV and it’s just beautiful to watch. Also I really like family shows and dinosaurs.

2. Firefly: Probably the most classic unjustly cancelled TV show of all-time. Space Pirates. The cutest characters of all time: Kaylee and River.

3. Middleman: Think Torchwood by goofier and American (maybe implied). A young woman is recruited to be the assistant to the ONE man to defend humanity from all things alien in weird. It was hilarious and there was an Android assistant.

4. The Secret Circle: It was one season but once again for the most part the initial story arc felt complete. About a coven of witches and teenagers who make bad decisions and are honest about it, which is refreshing.

5. No Ordinary Family: This one we needed more from but it was so good. It was about a family that had suddenly acquired superpowers during a plane crash. It’s really sweet and has my favorite trope of accidentally working for the antagonist .

6. Dark Angel: Jessica Alba’s best role to-date no questions, she plays a woman who as a child was genetically modified and escaped a military compound as a child and tries to be a superhero. It’s two seasons and the best decision you can make.

7. Life Unexpected: Two seasons. The first show I remember making me cry. It is about a girl who is trying to be emancipated from foster care and finds that her birth parents never signed adoption papers and must find them.

Honorary Mention: Heroes because only two seasons are actually good and Star Trek: OG because in skipping the bad episodes you only have about a season worth of TV.

Happy watching.

On Making Adult Friends

I really like having friends or at the very least someone to talk to and have fun with. However friends have always been kind of forced into my life, mostly in school or camp. It’s easy to be friends with who lives in your dorm hall or you have to see every week.

My job is really about meeting a lot of people and networking but there is no one I see or talk to everyday except my candidate and my family. It’s been hard to figure out how to make friends and who is a friend versus someone who tolerates you while you are at the same event.

I would like friends where I am living but it’s hard. Mostly because I am pretty sure I am too aggressive when trying to be friends or like actively avoid people. I have found myself to be a relatively polarizing person, and I am very afraid of the people that don’t like me.

The easiest technique that I have used is just showing up, at events, restaurants, the library, etc. People just seem to get used to your presence or maybe I got used to them and finally felt comfortable. Either way several people I hadn’t talked to were convinced we were friends just because they had seen me so often. (I know this sounds like a joke but it’s how I made my two best friends since moving back home).

If anyone knows another way to have fun, platonic people in your life I really would like to know about it.

Monthly Recommendations: Mixed Media/Graphic Novels

Monthly recommendations is a Goodreads group that gives different recommendations for books in new categories every month. This month’s theme is graphic novels or mixed-media, really anything through comic books. I personally haven’t read that many graphic novels/comic books but the ones I have read I really love.

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Amelia Rules by Jimmy Gownley- So this is a children’s series but it’s soooo good. It was actually my little sister’s and I used to steal it from her room. It’s about a girl who has to move to a small town after her parent’s divorce and she has to learn how to fit in with her new friends who are pretend superheros at war with the neighborhood ninjas.

Betty and Veronica by Archie Comics –  I loved Betty and Veronica and they have their own comic series where they do much better than trying to date Archie. It’s just really funny and sweet.

elfquestElfQuest by Wendy and Richard Pini- This is one of the favorite series. It’s about elves that are bonded with wolves and then humans burn down their forest and have to leave and find a new home.

No Fear Shakespeare Graphic Novels published by Sparknotes – So this is I think the easiest way to consume a Shakespeare Play. You get to take your time with the language but it also has the visual aspect that is like you are reading a play on stage.

Nimona by Noelle Stevenson – I wished this was a series but it is a really beautiful, cute, and sad story about what makes some one a hero or a villain.

Saga by Brian K Vaughn – Everyone kind of already knows this series but it’s very good and just because it’s hyped you should still read it. It is the story of a pair of galactic lovers who are on opposite sides of the war and told from the POV of the pair’s child.

 

saga

Long-Distance Relationships

Happy Valentine’s Week! I hope you are spending it with anyone who makes you happy. This week I will be spending Valentine’s Day on Facetime. My S.O. is 500 miles away finishing up his degree. To be fair last year we celebrated at the hours I had off from stage managing the Vagina Monologues but we were at least together.

Long distance relationships are a pain in the butt. I am in a long distance relationship with everyone I care about S.O. and best friends.  With best friends it’s easy we’ve been together so long. My best friend in the world lives another couple hundred miles away in Arkansas. We keep our connection through weekly newsletters, filled with what we did this week, what books we read, annoying things people said to us, etc.

With my partner things are a little harder. Technology helps. Snapchat allows for a daily viewing of the face you miss. The Showgoers extension on chrome allows you to watch Netflix at the same time on different devices. So date nights can still continue as long as your partner does not pause every other second like mine does. We have found that it’s important to keep up communication while far apart to make sure the other person still feels like they are a part of day-to-day operations. Developing traditions around the long-distance like saying goodnight every night and making sure the other person ate lunch.

Anyway long-distance sucks but love rocks and it has become easier to make it work.

Spend this week with people who make you happy.

Breaking Resolutions

So for the last two weeks I have broken my resolution to write a blog piece for this site once a week before midnight. It’s just so easy not to do something versus actually doing it. So I took so unintentional and then some intentional time off because I didn’t really have anything to say and I felt guilty.

Then I was like why should I feel guilty it’s a promise I made to myself and it does not hurt anyone else. Also it’s not a huge deal as it is not as though I am giving up on my blog or my writing. Actually a lot of the reasons I took a break is because I was so focused on my other resolutions. Also, I got really sick.

My baking resolution also had to change slightly because we recently found out my grandmother is pre-diabetic. So instead of practicing my meringues I have been practicing my sugar-free baking.

I think that is okay to press pause on a resolution and not feel bad. As long as the goal is given up on but only made to work with current life situation. Resolutions are should make you feel better and improve your life. It should not make you feel worse or push your life in ways that do not make you feel good.

Long story short. I am keeping up with blog I just think it’s okay to take time off.

Changing Plans

I had a plan. To be fair I have had lots and lots and lots of plans. I’m pretty sure that my long and short term goals have changed like 20 times over the past 5 years. Even in the past month things have changed from the initial plan that I had when finishing my degree.

Plan A: I was rejected from. Rejected is my least favorite feeling and it definitely has put me in a moving forward slump out of new fear of rejection.

Plan B: I figure out is not what I wanted when I had to consider it seriously. Which was a bummer, I think but it would have been more of a bummer to actually go through with it and be completely miserable and not making any money

So it took a little step back and am letting myself be a little lost. I am still working/free-riding and working while gaining experience. So my currently plan is a large amalgam of back up plans while trying to figure my life out. I DON’T KNOW WHAT I WANT! This is largely keeping me from wanting to do anything or move in any particular direction.

Right now I am staying put until June I have a position until the primaries here in Maryland in June and then we (me and the candidate and my family) are re-evaluating. However, a lot may happen between now and then, my family may move away. We will see.

Plans will probably change a lot again likely soon. I am learning to accept it even though I really really hate it.

Looking forward

2017 was a weird year. There was a lot of good things: I finished my bachelors degree, I interned for a mayoral campaign, I lived and worked in Boston, I vacationed with my friends and boyfriend, I started reading and writing again.  There was also a lot of really bad things: the loss in my family, my mental health was bad and had significant relapse, I had to let go of friends that turned out not to be positive people in my life even though I thought they would last a lifetime.

2018 will be better. 2018 must be better even though it will be significantly harder than I would like transitioning into life after college, a long distance relationship, and still coping with lose and mental health. So I have some goals to keep progressing in my life.

Writing Goals:

  • Post on my blog once a week, deadline before midnight on Sunday (better than keeping track of 7 days)
  • Finish draft one of the novel I started at the end of 2017.
  • Enter 4 writing competitions for short stories or poetry

Reading Goals:

  • Read 100 books again this year:
    • including 5 books that come out in 2018
    • Read 5 new to me authors
  • Keep up with non-fiction reading that applies to my field (Political Science) now that I have left school — two courses of reading

Personal Goals:

  • Finally get a credit card because debit cards have kept me from ever over-drafting but also I need to build a credit score
  • Get a job, this is already underway I am working on a campaign for free but am not doing anything for money which currently am trying to fix. It would be fine with me to get experience for no money as long as I can build up savings at the same time.
  • Get better at technical baking,  I would like to learn how to make the different types of meringues and sponges (The Great British Bake Off changed my year)
  • See my now long distance boyfriend in person at least once, stretch goal is three times but this is probably not going to happen.

 

The First Holiday without a loved one

As you may no from my post on ambiguous loss, this past fall my family has been separated and we have in a sense lost my brother. This was our first holiday season without him. It has not been easy. In fact it has been incredibly hard. There was no fighting over who would light the candles or vigorous bets on which candle could last the longest. We didn’t watch his favorite Christmas movies, yes the Santa Clause is cheesy but this is the first year it did not graze our screens. My sister and I weren’t woken at 6 and then 7 and then 8 which is when we can actually come up to enjoy presents and stockings. Passing around presents went faster than it ever has. It is quiet. I don’t know if I like it. I suppose the only way to get through the holidays is to miss them and know that you miss them and not pretend that things are the same. We tried that for a while and my mom cried through Elf. Needless to say it didn’t go well. So for Christmas my mom framed one of his pictures and I gave my parents a framed photo of the whole family at my sister’s first Christmas (she is the youngest). It is so hard to know how sad you are supposed to be especially on a holiday where in all reality it should feel joyous.

Hanukkah was mostly easy because I was at school for all but the last night and could celebrate with my friends there and did not have to think about my family not being together, as I was states away and couldn’t be with them anyways. This has been harder because it is clearer that someone is not here, that there is a part missing. Hopefully it gets easier as the years go on or at least as we start to move away from this crappy year.

If you have any tips to make it feel any better please let me know.

What ever you are doing today celebrating or not, have a safe and happy time.

Monthly Recommendations: Books I am thankful for

November (yes I know I am a little late)’s recommendation topic is books I am thankful for. There are lots of ways that one can be thankful for a book: made me the reader I am, connected to a happy memory, got you through a hard time, etc.

  • Harry Potter by JK Rowling: I think this is an obvious one for most people. It sparked my love of magic and obsessive love of Harry Potter. This is also the book my dad brought home when we adopted my baby brother.
  • The Mortal Instruments by Cassandra Clare: So this is a series that came to me at the right point in time. I was going through such a hard time and it made me feel there was where people like me and who cared about me. I read this series with my friend who became my best friend.
  • She’s Come Undone by Wally Lamb: Once again a book that showed me that you can be fine no matter what else is happening. This is also the book I was reading when a real professional author, of this book, told me to keep writing and that I had talent. So grateful for both.
  • The Sound and the Fury by William Faulkner: This was a book that I read with my 2 best friends in high school and we made a hilarious book report with it (it was on a pumpkin). I really just had such a great time reading it and it made me much less afraid of classical literature.
  • Shadow and Bone by Leigh Bardugo: I read this book my freshman year of college and it just got me out of reading slump and my stress of school and it was such just a bright fun read.
  • Red Rising by Pierce Brown: This is the first book series I read with my boyfriend and we still talk about it all the time and it’s so much at the root of our friendship.