On choosing paths

A tear etched its way down my cheek

for the veil is lifted and now I can peak.

I can glimpse the cross roads now

I could have gotten lost swimming upstream

I may have not seen

that I can do it but I can’t do it all

Now I’m afraid to let go

My hands can only hold so much

So I have to let something go

Will this be enough for me or will I desire more?

Maybe it’s not about me and there is a way

but I’ve seen what it takes to get there

and I wish to.. I need to explore and play

Another tear rolled down, I can see

It’s liberating and devastating

But at least now I can see

Thank you for showing me.

This was written after some reflection on future paths that culminated in watching La La Land. 

Disclaimer: Always learning.. Always evolving.. for life. x 

On duality of Self

There are days when I wish I could spend all my time devoted to photography, writing, baking and art. I feel the pull to live simply, making a living off of a combination of these creative pursuits and having the time to read novels, gather around delicious food and “just chill” and connect and find joy in these little things. What keeps me from it is not practicality because I intentionally turn down clients in those areas, it may sound arrogant now that I write it down but it’s not; I want to pursue them, it’s just that there is a weight on my soul, a fire that does not let me use those tools and my time to pursue these individual desires.

See, the truth of it is that I wish I could live like that and be happy, but I know I would not be. It is like wishing for ignorance after feeling the weight of knowing. The reason I have those two parts of me that coexist, and sometimes battle, may be partly due to the way I was raised. I was always told that whatever I do needs to bring value to the world, if it adds value to others then it is a job, if it does not then it is a hobby. Another reason for that weight is connecting early on with issues that did not make sense and felt extremely unjust and made me desperately want to change them like children in care for example. It did not make sense to me that in the fateful randomness of life, kids and other young people like me had the odds stacked against them by adults simply because of the circumstances they were born in, when the very same adults would bend backwards to accommodate kids and young people who were born in privileged circumstances.

I have always intended to live simply so it is not a matter of making money, but a matter of how. The tools and skills are acquired and learned but it is how they are utilized that matters. I still pursue photography, writing and art but I hope to use it to bring value in addressing those issues that I care about. My use of the word value is a deeply personal one is because I truly believe that there are millions of ways to bring value to others so it’s about matching internal passion with external needs. The youtuber who travels and teaches yoga is pursuing what personally moves them, their art, but they are providing value to me on the other side of the world because they solve a problem for me. They are listening to their soul and pursuing what they find moving to them. I need to do the same with mine.

Since it has become clear to me that both sides are important (after years and years of them battling), the one that is moved by creative sensory aesthetics and the one that is moved by a large and complex problem, I must honor them both and not suppress one for the other which I had done in the past. Now it is about figuring out how to give space for each side to breath, grow and build an intertwined bridge of meaning between the two. I know that when things get tough on one side I may want to escape to the other, but they are both needed, equally and simultaneously.

When both work together I see great results with creative approaches to addressing complex problems and a really fun and enjoyable process. They make magic together. I just need to practice and learn how to give them that space, how to build in both of them and how to allow them to dance together to create something meaningful and authentic.

This entry was written on a day filled with creative energy but focused on analytical and structured tasks. I have been experimenting with balancing both with promising results. 

Disclaimer: Always learning.. always evolving.. for life. x


On this Journal

Since this is the first post, I thought it would only be logical to explain the idea behind this online journal, why I am doing it and who I am. The who I am bit is a little daunting to explain in a nutshell so I may let all the upcoming posts gradually paint a picture and I’ll stick to mentioning just some basics.

I’m currently 23 years old (it is 2017) in my final year of grad school (studying child and youth care) and I did my undergrad in psychology. I’m into a lot of things, mainly photography, art and design, and business and I love combining my skills, my passions and the social issues that I am most concerned about. That is why the traditional job of a psychologist never really attracted me and I went towards NGO work and currently social enterprise work.

I have blogged for years (on this very site) since I started this blog when I was studying psychology and doing a bunch of volunteer work in Istanbul and I wanted a creative outlet to share what I was learning in a very self-help kind of way (Thank you to all the readers who enjoyed that blog). I grew, evolved, questioned a lot of things and found that those types of posts were limiting because they don’t match the complex and uncertain nature of humans and life (I can say that now in hindsight but at the time I found that I was censoring myself to write neat “5 steps” posts).  I found that the more I dived in to examine the questions I had, the more there was to learn and discover. I learned an incredible amount about myself and through that open vulnerability, my perspective transformed.

Now, that transformation was grueling, it tipped my world on its axis, I felt lost and so confused at times and euphoric in others but it taught me so much about how to question, how to search, how to learn and most importantly how to reflect. It also taught me that I have just got a taste of a drop of water and there is an ocean of learning and growth that awaits me to seek it. So I began an effort to push myself to do just that and journaling is a useful tool to have on that journey.

What does that even mean?

I always thought journaling was like keeping a diary and writing what I experienced, and since I had nosy siblings, that never attracted me. I came across its true meaning in the midst of that rollercoaster of change when so many ideas, experiences, concepts, and conversations from different areas of my life would connect in my mind in a very hazy way and when I get frustrated with a foggy head and trying to push for clarity, I would resort to putting pen to paper and allowing the words that flow out to solidify those connections. This seemed very useful and it made me listen more closely when people I admire online spoke of keeping a reflective practice like journaling.

I am trying to be more present and mindful, to push myself outside my comfort zone and do things that make my heart just clench and my mind whisper over and over “there is no need for you to do that” or “you can’t”. So I journal to pay attention to thoughts, conversations, experiences, feelings and ideas and when I say journal, sometimes it means writing a page of text, sometimes a poem, and at other times a mind map, a sketch or a list.

On this online journal I will post some of those connected ideas in order to develop them further through conversations with you guys and to push myself (outside my comfort zone) and be open and honest about all that is human. So in conclusion, this journal will resist perfection, accept contradiction and contain multitudes.

I feel like you deserve some kind of reward for reading this so here is a brownie    I made with my sister last night and photographed. Yay brownie points! (also, my first blog was a food blog.. so that’s another thing about me.. I love food!)

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