New year advice

The simple fact is that folks typically set unrealistic goals as New Year’s Resolutions. Me included.

I’m sorry, it’s plain fact. The truth.

Not only does it fill us with unnecessary pressure, it leads to self-deprecation—a self-loathing for not meeting our goals and guilt—oh, so much guilt.

I also live in a make believe world.  I have dreams of losing twenty pounds and looking svelte in about 60 days—sliding into black leather pants and looking like a hot mama by the time spring arrives (which, by the way, will not happen in a million years).

This goes along with societal expectations. Sadly, many of us are setting goals such as weight loss or writing a book or working out more in order to improve the way we are viewed by our peers.

Now, you need to know that I don’t typically give advice (this might be a lie) because I don’t have much to give (that might not be true either). I’m still trying to figure out things myself so who am I to give advice to others.

But if I did give advice—which I don’t admit to doing—then I’d say this to the young people in my life (or any young people around me for that matter):

Be you.

I know. It’s not easy. And if you think it is, you’d be wrong. You see, lots of people ask you to be something other than what you are.  Many claim to know what’s best for you.

They don’t. Trust me.

They actually believe you were made to please them.

You weren’t. Trust me on this.

I have spent most of my life marching to someone else’s drum beat. Being what someone else thought I should be. Telling me how to live my life.  That’s right. Most of my life I have pretended to be what narrow-minded half-brains thought I should be.

And I was stupid enough to do it. You know why? Because I couldn’t be sure who I was so I didn’t have the guts to forge my own path.  I conformed.

Those that know me well would say I am not a conformist. But deep down, below the surface, I am.  Trying to fit into a mold that someone else decided I should fit into.

And it’s hard to do that. So, my advice is DON’T.

So, I say to young people, “Be yourself.” Love who you love, wear what you want to wear—whether it is cool or not—because who says what is cool? Who says who we should love? Reach out and love someone. Be a friend to that uncool kid.  Laugh loudly at something you think is funny. If you like to sing, SING and don’t worry about who’s listening or whether you can really sing or not.

Live your life with passion.  For something.  And don’t worry about what others think about it.

Because you’ll learn as you grow in life, you don’t need to care, and if others do—then you don’t need them.

You are unique.  God made you that way.

I’m still trying to figure out what that means. I know God gave me the gift of gab—anyone who knows me will not deny that statement—and he gave me the gift of putting that gab down on paper.

What I learned in the last year is that I have gifts that no one can take away from me.  And they can try to tell me how to use it—but I’ve grown in the last year or two and decided I’m not going to allow that anymore.

You can do that too.  You can make 2019 your year to be the best you WANT to be—to be who you are MEANT to be—who God DESIRES you to be.  So stop messing around.

And do it.

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Constance Camille
Writer, Poet, and Photographer who craves words, and people who love words, Constance Camille hangs her hat somewhere in Florida with her three Volpino Italiani doggies where she writes fiction, creative nonfiction, and a good poem when she’s in the mood. Her idea of heaven is a picnic and a good book. A graduate of the University of Central Florida with a B.A. in English-Creative Writing, she recently completed her poetry chapbook "Other Shiny Things" and her story "The Forger" recently appeared in "The Write Stuff Anthology." She also serves as a submissions reader for the Florida based literary journal "Longleaf Review."

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