My last post, published a few weeks back was called from nothing to something. The post contains much valuable information for anyone that is struggling with rebuilding their lives and looking to build from a place of need. A few weeks ago, I was face to face with having to build from nothing once again. The frustration that accompanies facing the same problems again and again is either crushing or motivational. When you have nothing, being crushed can be an extremely dangerous thing because when you think you’re at rock bottom, any worse than that and you might find yourself dead. As is always the case, I write these articles not only to help others but also to help myself. I hope that you can find value in my attempts to sort myself out.
First things first, I don’t have nothing and certainly have more than many. I have two hands and two feet, a mostly functioning brain and the ability to speak. And so, I looked at myself and figured out what I can do to get where I need to go. I knew that I needed to get stable in a way that would allow me to progress in the direction that I needed to progress. Here in Seattle the job-hunting process was harder than I expected but at one point it becomes a numbers game and depends on how many resumes you can dish out. For every 10 resumes I sent, I would get less than one phone call in return, and that was resumes where I would put in the research and write a long cover letter. Maybe I need to update my resume or maybe my work history is catching up with me. At this point in my life getting a job is taking some work but eventually I landed just the job I was looking for. I landed a job selling cars for Subaru.
This is possibly the first job that I am putting in full time hours and not working for myself. For the first few weeks this was useful and I made it through my first two weeks on spending less than fifty bucks which I ended up needing to spend on work clothes and gas for the car. There is much that I need to learn and I have been hitting it as hard as I can. Fortunately, I have experience in door to door sales making this car thing a breeze. When on the door people tell you to “get the fuck off my door.” Here at the dealership they come to you say “Hi, I’d like to purchase a car.” Selling cars is easy and I have already sold three. It’s managing the relationships with my coworkers that I have a problem with.
There has been an old dog that has been following me for my entire life and that is some sort of social awkwardness that now, at age 26 has become a real problem. I find that in group situations, especially the situations that matter the most, I can’t find anything to say. I used to think that it was social anxiety but with my all my experience in meditation I can crush most anxieties within moments. I now am rethinking how to handle my emotions in these social situations. Part of me thinks that I should chill out to the max, but I want to speak and be a part of what people are doing. This social stuntedness is possibly the biggest demon of my life right now and something that many people don’t understand about me when they get to know me. Some people never see it and many people believe me to be someone to look up to when it comes to social situations. I hope that with a healthy bit of money this problem will go away but sometimes I don’t know.
This post has been something of a soap box but I write these posts to sort myself out. Maybe there is someone that will read that may have some advice or maybe you can relate to my story and feel less alone. The idea behind this blog to find the social connection and the wisdom that can be shared between one another. If you know anything that might help, please let me know. I am open to learning we just need to meet halfway.
Car life is great. I can’t wait to take it to the coast where I will be able to explore from my super mobile home. For now, I am still in the building phase and am working on building the car into the home of my dreams. It needs a passenger window, new carpet, and there are a few cosmetic improvements that can be made. I have been watching different youtube videos that people have made that show off the different style of living that people have invented for their subarus. Some of the youtubers have solar and water collector which is a bit beyond my price point, but a wooden framed that fits into the back seat would be nice. Maybe some cardboard cutouts to fit onto the windows. A disco ball. A play for two.
Currently, I live on the outside of society. Not having a single place that I stay and call home makes it so that I am something other than main stream. Not having a mailing address is difficult in that my first check from where I work will be sent to a location that I do not reside in. All government documentation is mailed and I am currently using my mothers address who lives 5 states away. It’s frustrating that society assumes that you live in a house and if you don’t then you are going to have to figure these nuanced things out. I signed up for this however, and do not regret my decision. At this very moment I sit in a coffee shop next to people that dress like they have a house, a car, a job… Most of these people have probably been going to the same job for years and have savings accounts and maybe even a house. I am so far removed from this type of life that I now feel on the outside looking in. I am beginning to wonder if starting a career and saving up enough money to “fit back in” with the mainstream might be the things that I want to do. (Reading this paragraph through I think- classic, a guy that lives in the rough desires comfort).
The people I went to school with have all graduated and are now making more money than they have an idea of what to do with. I don’t have a way to grasp how much I owe in school loans and also don’t have a definite plan of paying it off. My school friends make plans to travel but something like three years down the road, after they have saved up enough money to make the trip in luxury. That looks like a really good idea for the perspective of my car, but there is no way I could ever wait that long.
I value the experiences that I have had so far but wonder if I might be able to choose a better path for myself. One adventure to the next is something that would be hard to give up, maybe impossible. The wear and tear of life feels like it might get to me at some point and I might then be forced into choosing something different. For now I will continue down the path of the unknown. I wish to be in Australia and that is where my sight still lies. A month or two of work and then I will be off to continue with the great adventure. I will need to figure out how to make money doing the coast over the next few months. This week will be focused on the car. Next week I cannot say. The week after that is still a greater mystery and from then until death anything could happen.
It feels like it’s all going to work out and come together just in the nick of time. It’s been too long that I have been under pressure to complete some task without the necessary resources, but now I have what I need to make the leap across the sea. All my bags are packed and I’m ready to go. As of today, there are two weeks until I leave for Australia. I do not know what I will get into in the remaining two weeks but I am sure that it will be an adventure worth writing about.
After working at Powder Mountain ski resort for the winter I returned to Colorado with 50 dollars and came to start saving money for the trip I am about to depart on. I was able to do exactly what I set out to do here in CO and was able to partake in a few extra adventures along the way. Some of which include working as a bartender for my first time, pirate party festival in Montana, getting a motorcycle, the hail storm, and then general adventuring around the city and in the mountains. There were more setbacks that I am willing to admit, and I am still working on not reacting negatively when life gives you the ol’ one two. Surely, I am making my way.
This past weekend I visited the family in Minnesota and was able to see all the close members that I have not seen too long. My mom’s new house, my brother’s awesome life, and my dad’s cabin in the woods. I know that I will miss them more than anything and this visit will be like my last breath of air as I plunge beneath the surface of America and my home.
There is so much to do. I still have not bought my plane ticket and will need to get on that as soon as I have my passport in had. I will need to figure out what to do with my remaining two weeks. The choice is between riding Vegas pedicabs or going to Portland to explore. I am leaning towards portland but cannot say for sure. I will make my decision at the last possible moment. Contacting my pedicab friends in CO and asking them if they want to go to Vegas is another option.
I am spending less of my time looking back. When I do look back it’s to learn from the past. To think about my wrongs and ways that I can correct so that when I am overseas I do not make mistakes that could potentially be catastrophic. More of my thought is put into the future and as the day come closer and closer I become more and more excited. I am sure that things will not go according to plan. I feel like they will go better, actually. Some things that are within the plan that I am looking forward to are things like pedicabbing in Melbourne, getting barreled on a surfboard, learning to scuba dive, seeing friends that are living on the other side of the world, living and loving in and outside of a car. Australia baby here I come!
I would wager that just about everyone has some form of escapism that they engage in on the daily. A fraction of these people recognize the opportunities that are missed because of the time that is spent on something that is not in direct attainment of life’s goals. For me, its most obvious in the urge to play video games comes because I have shortcomings in other parts of my life. In order to change my focus to something that I am competent in, I turn to video games to get a sense of gratification that I am not getting in the real world. It can be extremely challenging to keep from turning to these types of escapism when faced with overwhelming obstacles. In order to get at the root of escapism I have a few penetrating questions. Where do these negative emotions come from? Why is it that I am unable to control myself when confronted with these emotions? What could be some possible solutions for living a better life?
Firstly, defining what constitutes a negative emotion that then turns me to escapism. From the position that I sit in now it seems entirely irrational to do anything but build myself to overcome in the face of adversity, but this is not the case. One instance of a source of these negative emotions comes from going out at night in order to have fun and meet new people. Not all the time but often enough these events can cascade downward so that when I am leaving the bar I feel alone in that I was unable to make a solid connection with anyone that I met that night. This does not happen often but when it does it can be hard to deal with. Other things that can be hard to deal with are things like shortcomings at work, run-ins with the bad side of the law, and arguments between friends. These are the type of things that cause negative emotions and thus give rise to the will to escape from it all.
The ideal version of myself grows stronger when faced with adversity and at times I have experienced such a thing. A willpower arise that detaches emotionally in order to achieve the desired outcome. Other times a weakness that desires to neglect the reality of the situation in favor of something lazy and shameful wins. I can only understand the ebb and flow of these two internal drives as a necessity of life and therefor I must prepare for both.
Building a life that is full of positive emotions so that one would never even be tempted by escapism sounds disagreeable. This is not to say that I would do anything but pursue my dream of dreams, it’s just that I feel that anything worth doing should be challenging and therefore will include trying situations. For me, it’s not about finding the path free of road bumps but more so about strengthening the self in order to handle any road bump that might occur; and so I turn my attention to the weakest version of myself and ask: What’s wrong? Why are you unable to do what you know to be right? Is it a lack of courage or maybe you just don’t want it bad enough? From the heightened perspective of where I sit now I can offer few words that might help. Remember that life is short and that greatness can only be achieved by those who work for it. The journey of a thousand miles starts with a single step, so take your time and start small. Just remember to keep moving forward. Like the butterfly that created the hurricane, a small step in the right direction could be the first step to shift the minds of millions. Without the first step, there is nothing.
So yeah. Writing is where I do my most precise introspective work and by publishing this online I hope that it may help anyone that stumbles upon my work. If you thought about anything at all while reading please leave a comment. I love to hear other perspectives and to build a community is some of the greatest thing we do as humans and I am looking forward to all of it.