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Wandering Thoughts

Because sometimes hiding behind a pen and paper is the only way we can express our true thoughts and feelings

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The “Bad Guy” Theory

For most of my life, I have had an interesting relationship with being the “bad guy” in people’s stories.
On the one hand, I genuinely don’t enjoy hurting people, and so I often allow myself to be painted as the “bad guy” (i.e. taking all the blame) when I have issues/disputes/misunderstandings with people. On the other hand, I don’t really enjoy “debating” with people (especially opinionated people who always have to be right). just noWhich means most times, when I discuss controversial or potentially controversial issues, I keep my opinion to myself. Partly because I don’t have the patience for stubborn people (lol) but mostly because I don’t want to be on the receiving end of anyone’s disapproval.
However, over the last couple of weeks, I have been toying with the idea of being the “bad guy” in the story, and I have come to a few realisations.
Realisation number one. In some situations being the “bad guy” doesn’t make you a “bad person”. For example, recently, I have read a lot of articles and posts about sexual abuse and gender equality. Surprisingly, a lot of those posts have received a large number of negative criticism even though the issues raised in the posts have been valid. Now, to a lot of people, the writers of these posts are the “bad guys” however, in reality, they aren’t the “bad guys”. In reality, they are a voice for those who are on the receiving end of gender inequality and sexual abuse which are important issues.
So what does this have to do with the “bad guy” image?excelent question Well, we live in a world with ever-increasing problems, and we often shy away from speaking up on important issues because we don’t want to be the “bad guy”. Or we do not want people to view us as the “bad guy”. However, the truth is, we cannot change the wrong things around us if we remain silent. And most times, speaking up will temporarily make you the “bad guy” because people do not like to be challenged or told they are wrong.
Another realisation is this. The “bad guy” is something fear tells you to keep you from stepping out of your comfort zone and to make you doubt your self-worth. It is probably hard to swallow this “idea” but think about it for a minute. When you don’t understand that your thoughts and opinions are valid, you shy away from voicing them. Which in turn leads to my first point. You shy away from sharing those thoughts because you are scared of the response, you might receive.

You shy away from sharing those thoughts because you are scared of the response, you might receive.

In the past, I often played the “bad guy” role because I felt if someone was upset with me, then my feelings weren’t valid. Even when the person’s emotions were misplaced, I still felt I had to be the “bad guy” so the other person would not be hurt and would feel better. I have now realised that it is not my place to prevent people from getting hurt by their actions. That is something they need to deal with themselves.
I guess at the end of the day, what I am trying to say is, it’s okay if people see you as the “bad guy” if you are doing it in the right way and for the right reason. Everybody who has made a difference in this world was a “bad guy” at one point or the other. Finally, your thoughts, feelings and opinions are valid. You don’t have to bury them or accept undeserved blame because you think you deserve it or because you are avoiding a confrontation. speak up
So speak up, your voice matters.

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You can also follow me on Twitter and Instagram @shayrunn

The Weight of the World

Sunday = Picture dayGrowing up as a pastor’s child, I had what I would call an “interesting” childhood. Right from childhood, I knew I had to live up to being “The GOs only daughter“. The bar was already set much higher than it needed to be because of the family I was born into (I love them btw).  The bar was set so high, that I spent my childhood, teenage and early adult years trying to reach it. Everyone expected something from me and I couldn’t disappoint.

I didn’t get to do normal teenage things because “people would talk“.   I couldn’t be anything less than brilliant at school, and ultimately I had to be the epitome of all that was good and calm.  So, I lived by these unspoken rules laid out for me by the men and women I met at church, at school and anywhere in between. I grew up feeling as if I had the expectations of the world on my shoulders. I lived in a glass house and didn’t get to make mistakes.

PK Problems

I grew up the one people came to for advice (I enjoyed this though; a little too much I think lol!). For some reason, everyone assumed I was always good and as per pastor’s daughter, I was a “mini pastor”. I became a pro at hiding how I felt. I learnt to swallow all my emotions, my anger, hurt, confusion, etc. I swallowed it all. At the end of the day, I ended up knowing everyone, looking out for everyone, but being alone.

 

So many people carry the weight of expectations on them and end up alone because of it.

There is nothing wrong with being a role model, or being there for people, but like everything in life, there needs to be a balance. Many people never have the chance to develop this balance. They spend all their lives living up to expectation and being strong for others, while they silently suffer.  I hurt when I come across people like that because I have first-hand experience of how lonely and hurtful that life can be.

The truth is, I haven’t quite figured out how to balance living my life and being there for everyone. I still take on more than I should and get consumed by people and their emotions and I still internalize a lot. However, I have learnt some things along the way.

I have learnt that we are not perfect people and we need to be kind to ourselves.  I have learnt that you can only truly love others when you love yourself. I have learnt that beating yourself up for not living up to “standards” isn’t healthy. It can make you see yourself as not good enough. You are. be kind to yourself Most importantly, I have learnt that you cannot give when you are empty. Any help or advice you give when you are weak and empty is never a hundred percent.

At the end of the day, there is nothing wrong with being the person who is always “there” for people. There is also nothing wrong with living up to certain standards. However, while you give yourself to others and while you live up to “standards“, remember that you too are human and the same kindness you extend to others you should extend to yourself.

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Something Old but New

 A month after obtaining my B.Sc, I went back to school to start working on my Ph.D. Before I went back, I had a list of things I wanted to do outside of my research. I didn’t want to be one of those people who became so consumed with their research that they forgot how to live life. LOL. I laugh now because the thing I feared was what happened to me. A year into my Ph.D. I found myself struggling to find a balance. story for another post.palm face

I began to measure myself and my growth and progress with what those around me (and by around me, I mostly mean the people I knew back in Nigeria) were doing.

To my eyes, they were living the life, achieving their dreams and I was the struggling researcher living the work-home, work-home life 6 days a week. LOL what a silly comparison to make.

For a long time, I struggled with feeling like I wasn’t measuring up. Feeling like I was left behind,  and not progressing. But recently it struck me that yo I am doing a Ph.D.! I tend to throw the word around because I am surrounded by other Ph.D. students, but the truth is,  it’s in no way a walk in the park and the people I am constantly measuring my life with are not doing a Ph.D. and they are not me! well duh

Everyone’s journey is different and the truth is, we don’t all have the same end goal and we won’t all get to our end goals at the same time. Some people will get there at 20 others at 25 others at 30 and others at 50. Yes, we all want to achieve greatness, and we also want to be successful and happy, but the truth is, success and happiness vary for every individual. Our lives are different and the factors that surround us are different. We can’t expect to achieve everything at the same speed and in the same manner as others because we are not the same people! obv

So here are my two cents on the matter. In this social media age where everyone’s life is on Facebook and Instagram and Snapchat it’s easy to feel discouraged when your mates/people you know seem to be doing so much more than you are, or seem to be having much more fun , but the truth is, most people only put up the good times. They don’t post about their struggles, their stress, their hurt, nada, so you measuring your entire life against their happy moments is not ideal and doesn’t help you in any way. It’s like measuring your physical growth against a newborn baby. I mean, you won’t get an accurate representation because you are both at two different stages of life.

measuring your entire life against their happy moments is not ideal

Moral of the story, everyone is running a different race. Your race is unique to you and as long as you are running it to the best of your ability that’s all that matters. Keep running and achieving, cut yourself some slack and celebrate your small victories!celebrate

I say this all the time because it is super important! Celebrate your victories because life can be tough at times and people can be hard to please, so when you can, celebrate those victories! They make the bigger victories that much sweeter.

 

Thank you for reading today’s post!

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That Time of Year

Today is the 18th of December and in a few days, I’ll be a year older. Usually, I’m quite happy when my birthday comes along.

me

It’s another year, I’m getting older (don’t know why this ever made me happy tbh lol) people show me love, I remember all the good times, treat myself to some cake LOL, all that good stuff.

More importantly though, for me, birthdays usually mark the beginning of a new year (which is what they are) but more than that, they sometimes feel like a second chance. You know, like maybe you didn’t really do 18 that well, so then you decide you’ll do 19 better because you know better.  Or maybe 25 wasn’t as great as you wanted it, so you tell yourself 26 will be better, it’ll be your year etc.

In fact, about 6 months ago, I was already planning my birthday. I told myself I’d cut my hair and dye it red. I’d get a second piercing and this birthday I would usher in a brand new Sharon.

LOL, it’s actually not funny, but the last couple of months knocked me down a peg or two and to be very honest, I am not ready for my birthday this year. If I could skip it, or postpone it for a month or two, I would, but oh well!

oh well

Anyways, so things aren’t really going the way I planned, but I was speaking to a lady the other day and she said to me “Sharon, you can’t keep doing the same things and expect things to change”.

 

you can’t keep doing the same things and expect things to change

Now this isn’t or wasn’t the first time I was hearing that, and it wasn’t new to me, but hearing those words in that moment made me realize that I was actually doing a lot of harm to myself by being comfortable in my situation and waiting for the world to magically fix itself for me! LOL

And it reminded me that you can wish all you want for a better life, a better 2018. You can make all the new year resolutions you want. You can hope, and you can dream.

just

But if you live 2018 the same way you’re living 2017, making the same choices, nothing will change and come December 2018 you’ll be right where you started. At some point, you have to realize that life is what you make of it, and if something isn’t working for you, maybe you should try something else because come what may, you are not the same as everyone else.

Also, you need to accept the fact that your life is really yours to live and if you make decisions based on everyone but yourself, chances are those decisions will come back to bite you and they more often than not will leave you feeling resentful.

So yea, if you don’t like the way things are going, then maybe it’s time to make a change in your life. A change that moves you in the positive direction.

Life can sometimes be hard, but you don’t always have to do it alone.

And hey, if you’re unsure of what to do, there’s nothing wrong in asking for help. It takes a lot of courage to admit that you don’t have it all together and you need help. Don’t let your pride stop you from being great.loved

 

Life can sometimes be hard, but you don’t always have to do it alone.

 

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Greener Grass

I’m sure you were all expecting Part 2 of Relationship Bants! Lol, sorry to disappoint guys, I will post it, but just not today!

smug gif

You know what they say about delayed gratification!

Okay, so to today’s post. For the majority of last week, I struggled with feelings of “everyone seems to be having a better time than I am” 😦 .

I was comparing myself to former classmates that had gotten married, classmates that got new jobs, classmates that seemed to have had amazing summers etc. And there I was . . . going to my “8- whenever I close job”. Doing experiments that for some unknown reason kept failing, marriage nowhere in sight. (not that I really want to be married right now, but still) No chance of a new job for at least 2 more years and summer is over, so no amazing summer for me this year! 😦

As you can see, everything in my life paled in comparison to what everyone else seemed to be doing, and it was hard to not be depressed or to not compare my life to theirs and feel like I got the short end of the stick. sad face

I wish I could say I “slapped myself” and got out of those feelings just like that, but it didn’t happen that way.

I had to have conversations, with both myself and other people. I had to remind myself why I do what I do, and why my life is just as good as anyone else’s.

It’s very easy to think the grass is greener on the other side. It’s easy to look at others and feel inadequate to the people around you, but you shouldn’t, and there are many reasons why.

For starters, you don’t know personally what they are experiencing. I have learnt that social media life can be as real as it can be fake and it is often difficult to determine what is a stunt and what is the reality. Another thing I have come to learn about the grass on the other side is that it is rarely ever the kind of grass I like. It looks good, but if I am completely honest with myself, then I have to admit that the things I am envious of, are not really things I am interested in, which raises the question of why am I jealous of those experiences in the first place! idk

Human nature is always searching for more. Day in, day out we want more. We are hardly ever satisfied, and I think that’s why the grass often always looks greener.

So, what do we do about that? How do we deal with this illusion of greener pastures?

Honestly, I think everyone will deal with such issues differently. However, one thing we can do is when we are tempted to look at other people and think less of our positions or accomplishments, we need to remind ourselves of why we started in the first place and why we have stayed all this while. We should have those conversations with ourselves and the people around us that reaffirm what we already know about ourselves and the things we have. Because as human beings, we love affirmations and reaffirmations. affirmation

So, yeah… The grass does often look greener, but your grass probably looks greener to someone too, and maybe if you pay a little bit more attention to the good in your life, you’ll see all the greenness that others see in you!

 

I’m back!

pnWo3I can’t believe it’s August already! I mean, I can, but it’s just a bit dumbfounding. So many things have happened in the last couple of months, but that’s a story for another post!

I know I’ve been gone for a minute, but I’m sure it will please you to know that I have been working on some cool stuff, so keep your eyes open for them!

So, to today’s post.

Today I want to share a bit about myself  🙂 . I’m not a celebrity who gets asked hundreds of questions daily, but I do know that some of the people who read my blog haven’t a clue about who Sharon Bolanta is. So here it goes!

who_am_i_clipart2

My name is Sharon Bolanta, I am a PhD student at the University of Limerick and I have a B.Sc. in Pharmaceutical and Industrial Chemistry.

I am a Christian and I love it! Every day is a beautiful day when you know you are loved by The One who loves with reckless abandon! I cannot remove myself from my faith, or my faith from me.

I love writing. I write articles, poems and I dabble in “spoken word” now and again.

I am a fan of unconventional things, and I often think if people could see the thoughts that go on in my head they would be scandalized!

About my writing. I write because there is so much to say! I mean, we live in a world that has a warped idea of how things should be (in my opinion) and so many people feel hopeless because of the ideas and ideologies that society has placed on them. They feel locked in a box (I used to feel that way) alone and without a voice. They feel like they don’t belong, or like they have to conform to a certain way of life simply because it is all they know. I don’t think it has to be and for me, having certain conversations is the first step in showing people that they really do have a choice and life doesn’t always have to be a pot of beans!

Lol, okay, so I got carried away there! Anyways, here are some more random facts about myself. I found the questions on the internet!

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  1. What is your favourite colour?

I do not have one! I am partial to blue, purple and red which considering all things are almost the same thing!

  1. How tall are you?

I am about 1.72m I think. I might be taller, I don’t really know.

  1. Cats or Dogs

Dogs!  I grew up always having dogs as pets so I am a bit partial to them.

  1. How many countries have you visited?

Do airports count? Lol, I am joking. I have been to 5 and I have like 30 more to go to!

  1. Tea or Coffee?

Both! I don’t like black tea though. Herbal teas are my thing. I used to have tea collection a few years ago. But then, coffee is just something else. I love the taste, especially all the fancy coffees. Plus with my job, you need a few cups of coffee a day!

  1. Are you single or Taken?

El oh el. I am married to the Lover of my soul!

  1. How would you describe your fashion sense?

Comfortable. I like to look nice, but I will almost always choose comfort over fashion. I also tend not to follow fashion trends because I usually do not like them, or I really just can’t be bothered.idk

  1. What are some of your favourite tv shows?

Grey’s Anatomy is currently the main hit. I enjoy(ed) the Good Wife, White Collar, House, Gilmore Girls, How to Get Away with Murder, Riverdale (waiting impatiently for the next season) etc.

  1. What phone do you have? (iOS v Android?)

Android. However, if you want to bless me with a new one (iOS maybe!) I won’t say no!

  1. Do you eat breakfast every morning?

Hahaha, I should let my friends answer this one! Not every morning. In fact, not most mornings. I hardly eat breakfast

  1. How many pairs of shoes do you currently own?

10 maybe? Not more than 12 sha. Feel free to buy me some more if you want to!

  1. Do you use sarcasm a lot?

I am starting to use it more often thanks to some friend of mine! They know themselves!

 

That’s it for today guys! Thank you for reading today’s post.

Feel free to share, like and comment!

Just Do It

Something sad happened to me last week.Crying-Sad-Meme

My work crush got a new job and left (sobbing uncontrollably) LOL

I actually found it quite sad, cause in the 9 months that I have worked there, I never had the liver to talk to him, very sad stuff. He was always nice to me, smiled at me, actually said “Hi Sharon” unlike everyone else who just nodded at me, but for some reason, I just never knew what to say when I saw him. And then, last week he left.

As per usual Sharon nature, I learnt a lesson from that incident.

You know how the Nike slogan is

Just do it

Well, they were really onto something there. I mean, I expected this guy to be around for at least 2 years, giving me time to develop a liver and talk to him, but lo and behold, he left after 9 months.

Nothing in life is permanent. If you’re like me you might be good at prioritizing things and never actually getting to things at the bottom of the priority list. Don’t do that.  Don’t put things off when you can do them. If you’re meant to email someone, do it now and don’t say “I’ll do it later”, cause chances are you won’t.

just-do-it-

Life is fleeting, we all know this, situations change, people move, and life goes on, but sometimes we miss out on opportunities for greatness simply because we say to ourselves, “I’ll have time later” or “it’s not that important”.

Don’t be like me, if there is something you need to do, do it now.

So, these are my Monday words of wisdom, I hope you find them somewhat helpful or at the very least funny.

In the spirit of doing things, if you haven’t checked out my last blog post, now is the time to do it. There is a link to a beautiful song, “Boys Don’t Cry” on it, and I’d advise you to check it out 🙂

Thank you for reading today’s post! As always, I look forward to hearing your thoughts!

images gotten from Googleuk.complex

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