New Beginnings

A year has ended and spring has arrived and so a new chapter in life has begun. Everyone has a different take on life; some think, even if it sounds totally clichéd, that a new year means a new beginning (which is totally me) but at the same time I believe that a new year means that we can forget about our past failures and aim to improve ourselves and learn and grow to be a better improved version of ourselves. Every year we get a chance to think of life as a fresh chapter that we can edit if we don’t like our story.

Personally speaking, I have been shedding my past ever since I started college. I started my school in New York City and coming from my background of close minded Indian culture, this was all I had been waiting for since I could think for myself.

The new found freedom was refreshing and challenging at the same time. I could live my life without having someone look over my shoulder every time I went out of my threshold; however, the whole experience of changing and growing has been scary as well since I had to break out of my shell and mold into the person that I want to be. There are always two sides of a coin and every side has its pros and cons but if I had let the fear of living in the city alone or doing something out of my comfort zone stopped me, I wouldn’t have learned and grown so much.

I have learned a lot of things since my two and a half years of living alone and I am going to learn a lot more things but for now these important messages keep me grounded and keep me moving.

I have learned that…

I have to accept my body as it is – coming out of high school I was really insecure of how tiny I was, still am at times. I thought that no guys or anyone else will take me seriously like they do to the more average body types. I was wrong in thinking that and it took me a year since high school to believe that. I had to come out of my comfort zone and meet new people and read a lot of motivational articles to understand that. This year I am going to take that further by joining the gym to get more fit.

I am going to get jealous from certain people and that’s completely ok – in college, there are so many people and you will find a lot of them having a lot of strengths that you think you don’t have. I struggled with that, and I still do but I have accepted the fact that I am not going to keep comparing my life with other people (at least try not to) since everyone is different and everyone is leading a different life even if they are in the same major as you.

I have to rely solely on myself to achieve the goals that I want to achieve – A hard lesson I learnt last semester was that at times even the person who you think is supposed to guide you and help you through something won’t do their job and you will be left alone in a hole that you will need to come out of yourself. I had a professor, who I thought was going to help me come to terms with my queries and understanding of architecture, completely bailed on me and laughed at me. That hurt me a lot. It was something I thought a professor would never do, but he did and that made me insecure and lost. It took me a while to understand my self-worth again and believe that I wasn’t wrong in the way of my thinking, I just had to rely more on myself than on others to work through school projects and projects of life because in the time of need the only person you can rely on is yourself.

These are just a few of the lessons that life has taught me so far. I wouldn’t have learned these three lessons if I had been inside my shell and not embraced the present. Each year is different and it brings so much more to life, all you can do is think of it in a positive light and begin again for a new journey.

-HS

New Beginnings

We often feel like we’re disconnected from the world. We have our routines, we are productive, we do everything we’re supposed to do and even when we do it well, we somehow still feel disconnected.

Part of the new beginning is connection. Connect with others, but also don’t forget to connect with yourself. You always hear the cliché, You can’t love anyone else if you don’t love yourself first. And if you’re like me, you are tired of hearing it. But what’s truly important is knowing yourself and knowing exactly what you want. We follow these maps as if life is fair, as if time has discretion, and as if distance gives us space.

I’ve always been a goal-oriented person and I am determined to get where I want to be in life, but I often get stuck on letting things go. I don’t get attached easily, but once I do, letting go seems impossible. It’s my defense mechanism to put up walls. I’m passive, I taught myself to block things out. New beginnings have given me strength to move on and to give time a chance.

I’m starting a new beginning. Not because it’s 2016 and I need a resolution, not because its Spring and Spring itself is about new beginnings, but because I need emotional relief. Because it’s perfectly okay to decide to set a new goal in the middle of night and because everything I feel is valid. ­­ Landscapes change and maps aren’t these stationary things anymore.

Why do we give ourselves so many restrictions? And why do I feel the need to suppress? People come and go along with opportunities, and changing to respond to all of those things is irrational. I am not a person that fits into a box or single category, nor am I a conformist. I am stubborn and complex with more room to grow. With this new beginning comes confidence and it is one thing that will stay.

-AJ