The 2017 Breastfeeding Symposium was titled First Coast Neonatal Symposium and it discussed a very essential neonatal-related topic today which is insufficient breastfeeding. I am a social worker who manages a center for homeless teenagers that are either pregnant or with a baby/child in tow.
Have you ever wondered how the future generation will remember you or if you will even be remembered? For a person to be recognized is to create something that will contribute to the human race, but everything we need for now has been developed. Maybe you must be twice as a genius like Albert Einstein, or you must be the reincarnation of Leonardo da Vinci for you never to be forgotten.
“The thing is, each one of us is the total of every moment that we ever experienced,” a line from a Hollywood movie, “The Vow.” Indeed, we are but a memory. If we think about it, our entire individuality is based on where we grew up, the places we’ve been to, and the people in our lives. All of these contribute to our whole being. Each of us is different from another, even our sibling or twin because no one can have the same feeling of a particular experience in the exact place and time we had.
What Are The Roles Of Memories In Our Individuality?
We can’t ignore the fact that sometimes, we make decisions based on our memories, like when you choose a profession. You want to be just like your father. You remember him saving lives, so you want to be a doctor just like him. You remember how your mother made your home magnificent and every meal just glorious, that’s why you want a wife just like her.
Our memories could also trigger our behavior towards situations. An old familiar song could instantly change your mood from happy to sad or vice versa. A particular smell could trigger an emotion that only you could know why. These are all because of your memories from the last minute that had passed to the day you were born.
Some people also develop specific mental disorders because of the bad memories of their childhood or traumatic memory of losing someone significant in their lives. These memories create an impact on how they will continue with their lives. Some of these people who suffered abuse in their childhood could not cope up, and those memories affect their mental health leading to other negative behaviors and often, mental disorders.
Why Are Memories Important?
Memories are important because they’re like our records of every little detail that has ever happened in our lives. It’s a personal television in our head where we are the only ones who could click rewind and play.
Memory is essential because it can help us decide how we would want others to remember us because we are all but mere memories. We affect people in a way that even the littlest things we do or say to them influence how they think of themselves or life in general. It is up to us if we want to be a good memory or a bad one.
Maybe, 99% of our population would not be remembered a century from now, but do we really care? What’s important is the memories we make today, today when we can make a difference in someone’s life, especially the people we love. The thought of them smiling when they think about their memories of us is just priceless.
suicide letter, but it can never be enough to comprehend what it may have felt like to have given up hope. Sometimes, these people smile and laugh just before they choose to end their journey. Suicide makes us wonder how pointless life could have been. Didn’t they have family or friends? How hopeless life could have been for them that they chose this way out?
We all dreamed of having a family of our own when we were little. Some of us may have played mom and dad and built a make-believe house. Little did we know that life is going to be tough when we’re not kids anymore. The responsibilities as an adult are sometimes overwhelming that many develop depression.
Right now, I couldn’t say that my life is the way I planned it. I am not a doctor, I don’t have a house of my own, and I don’t have a car. They say we couldn’t have it all. Life is just balanced, and there’s always an aspect of it where you’re going to fail. “No one likes to fail, but some people take it harder than others,” says counselor Monte Drenner. So it should be considered.
I wasn’t able to be a professional because my long-time boyfriend and I decided to get married right after graduation. I couldn’t say no at that time. We were madly in love, and I was afraid that I might lose him if I’d let that moment slip.
We got pregnant on our first year of marriage. We were happy at first, and my husband was doing great at his job. We decided that I’ll stay home and take care of our baby, so basically, I became a housewife for ten years now. I was enjoying what I was doing until life got a little harder. His salary could not sustain all our needs, so we had to downgrade our lifestyle. Now I understand Elizabeth Scott, MS, a wellness coach when she said, “Although any stress can take a toll on your health, stress related to financial issues can be especially toxic.”
I couldn’t say we’re struggling so hard in life, but I wish we were able to prepare, so we wouldn’t have to go through all the hardships right now. If only I could talk to the 20-year-old me and tell her all the things I know now.
If Given A Chance, This Is What The 30-Year-Old Me Would Say To My 10-Year-Younger Self:
- Set Your Goals For Yourself
Yes, you have a partner, but you two are different individuals. He has his own life, and you have yours. It’s okay to plan together, but make sure that you have goals for yourself. You want to be a doctor, right? Go for it! Never give up your ambitions just because of your feeling at the moment. If he loves you, he’ll wait for you no matter how long. You’ll have a lifetime together, so a few years for yourself is not too much to ask.
- Dream Big
Always aim for the biggest. Don’t settle for what you think you can achieve. Strive for the things that challenge you. They will make you grow as an individual. You will never get better if you always stay in your comfort zone. Think great of yourself instead of limiting the things you can do. You know what you want, and that’s the most important thing. Never lose focus until you get it. Know that everything that comes between you and your dreams is a distraction.
- Take It Easy With Love
- Don’t rush love. Yes, it is a magical feeling, but it can spellbind you to move away from your dreams.
- True love is never selfish, so you should both want what’s best for the other, and that’s to see the both of you grow individually.
- True love is patient, so take it easy. If it’s true love, you’ll have a whole lifetime to spend together. Use your time in nurturing yourself as an individual so that you’ll be able to give more. You can’t give what you don’t have.
- Secure Your Future
Being ambitious is okay. Be idealistic and buy yourself a house and a car; make sure you have savings and a second source of income. It doesn’t hurt to be ready for the future but being unprepared does.
- Be Happy With Yourself
- Make a bucket list of the things you want to accomplish before turning 28.
- Make a list of the countries you want to visit before you settle down.
- Try different cuisines.
- Get a tattoo if you wish.
- Dare yourself to live on the edge sometimes.
Do all the things that make you happy. Be someone who makes you happy, so you won’t go finding it from anyone else. Note that “Authentic happiness is relating to the entire universe. When someone relates and leaves nothing out, you can see it in the face and posture. There is a presence about a truly happy person, a look that says “Yes,” to oneself, to others, and to the world.” Andrea F. Polard, PsyD said.
I wish I knew these things when I was younger. Things could have gone differently. Maybe we would be happier, perhaps not. Still, there’s still a difference in settling down ready. Life has a lesser chance of catching you off-guard.
I know I can’t bring back the past, and it’s not possible that the 20-year-old me could know this, and even though I know there’s nothing I can do about what’s happened ten years ago, I could still do something now. I am my present self who knows better, and this time, I’ll make sure the 40-year-old me won’t have to do this all over again.
Being in a relationship for an extended period of time can teach you a lot of things. From understanding the value of love and finding the essence of your self-worth, everything is undeniably in control. However, since there are relationships that require an end, you will eventually feel the need for letting go and being able to develop some beneficial qualities for yourself and become a better person.
The impact of bullying, be it in the school, the internet or within the family, has significantly compromised the mental health of children involved in bullying. Experiencing violence and humiliation at a very young age is something genuinely undesirable, but because of bullying, children had to go through the emotional and physical pain that will forever be etched in their minds and will be part of their lives.
Face it. People will have a lot to say when you are trying to push your limits and do things on your own. Most of them assume that you can never make it because you don’t have enough guts to work your way to the top. Sadly, these people are often the ones you offer and spend your life with. These individuals judge you, mock you, and break down your spirit. Why? That is because they do not want you to succeed.
Sometimes your best is not often enough to convince people to support you. That is because it is either they can never benefit from your achievements, or they don’t feel like living behind your success. But the truth is, these people only want to be like you but just can’t. They do not want you to succeed because they know you are capable of becoming one. They do not want to see you living your life to the fullest because they want it too. They desire it too much, but they know they are incapable of doing so. With that, you need to understand that “Research shows that how you think about yourself can have a powerful effect on how you feel. Practice using words that promote feelings of self-worth and personal power. Give yourself a positive pep-talk.” That’s according to Dr. Aaron Kaplan, PsyD, Clinical Psychologist.
Most of the time, you hear them complain about their lives. And when you don’t care, they marked you as a selfish, uncaring, and inconsiderate human. But is that your problem? Of course, not. Honestly, you do not have to care about them when they don’t take a minute to appreciate all your efforts towards reaching your goal. It is not your mistake for being motivated in creating something for your future. It is these people’s fault why they are still miserable and unfortunate. “Look at negative thoughts like reruns of a TV show you’ve seen a million times. Let them play in the background while you shift your focus to something else.” Jo Eckler, PsyD suggests.
Cut To The Chase
Your life and success are yours alone. These people who stick around when you are on top are parasites. You need to get them off your system and block their every entrance in your life. Do not feel sorry for their sad lives because they deserve it. They choose not to do anything with their situation, so it is not your obligation to pull them out of the pit. Listen to yourself. Value the things you can do and never allow these people to rip you into pieces.
Your goals are the things that matter. “People with a healthy self-esteem tend to view failure as an event. People with low self-esteem often view failure as fatal. This thought process pummels one’s self-esteem and overtime being a failure becomes their identity.” counselor Monte Drenner said. People might never agree with your ways, but it is not your entire problem. Let them take care of themselves and do not wish for them to get involved with your success. Because if you do that, these ungrateful people will take everything from you until you have nothing left. So instead of trying your best for them, work things out for yourself. Focus on what you can achieve and become more and more successful. Because once you are on top, these people will soon crawl back up. Trust me. These parasites live for their benefits.
Being successful is a choice, and it takes a lot of hard work. When you allow people to pull you down, you will never achieve anything. And even if you think you are capable of doing everything, when you enable these losers to control you, you will fail and will hit the ground ten times harder.
Have you ever wonder why there are people in your life that does not want you anymore? Have you questioned yourself about the type of personality you have that makes people unloving? Is there a significant chance that you understand how your behavior is affecting the way others connect with you. Are you unaware of your words and actions toward others’ feelings and opinions? If you know you are not making any slight offense that others cannot take, then maybe it is not you that is the problem. Perhaps the way you see things is different from the rest. So instead of them accepting you, they leave you because you tend to be distinctive. If you are confident that your personality, behavior, and self-expression are not the cause of why the people around you leave, then perhaps here are the grounds.
You Are Brutally Honest
“Most people have a loud inner critic which makes their life more stressful,” says David Klow, a licensed therapist. In case you haven’t noticed, people do not like it when others tell them the truth. No one wants to hear the truth because they get overwhelmed with lots of lies. That is the problem with people. So when you are brutally honest, people think that your opinions and suggestions are not worthy. You become a type of person with less of a value. Most of your friends, family, co-workers, and schoolmates will think that your honesty is something that rips them the ability to enjoy whatever lies are in front of them. These people believe that regardless of what you are telling them is true, as long as it hurts, it will never mean a thing.
You Refuse To Blend With The Crowd
There is this mentality that when you try to be yourself, you get judged. People do not feel comfortable when someone is not blending in with the majority. That is because a lot of them are afraid to get left behind. “If your intention is to live a meaningful and healthy life, you will make decisions that support this intention, and feel good about yourself when you succeed in this purpose.” Deborah Khoshaba Psy.D. explains. Everyone thinks of reaching the top no matter what. So when someone is nearly there, these losers always have something negative to say. They take all your power and motivation to do things that is self-satisfying because they are not satisfied with what they do in their lives. With that, they convince more morons to hate and discriminate you for being different.
You Love Yourself More Than Anything
What is more mind-boggling with a lot of people is their hate towards individuals who love themselves. They look at these self-loving people as self-centered, biased, and inconsiderate ones. Funny, because these unworthy people who don’t know how to appreciate others tell everyone that loving one’s self is a selfish act. However, they do not realize that self-love is the only thing that can save people from having emotional and mental agony.
Honestly, these people who complain about you being brutally honest, different, and self-loving, are the worst people to have in life. Let them go and let them leave you. Fran Walfish, PsyD says, “When trying to keep a positive attitude, you must avoid people who thrive on negativity.” Do not worry because it is not your fault to be unique. It is their problem for having misperception towards people like you who can stand proud of being exceptional.
It is not always that you understand yourself. It is also not possible that you can convince people to accept you for who you are. It is not usual that you manage the things you want in life without thinking through it. It is not often that you know what you can do and who you want to become. Since there is no guarantee that you can stay consistent with yourself, you might want to consider doing things for future you.
Appreciate Your Self And Love Your Flaws
There is nothing more validating than accepting your imperfections. You are not perfect, and you will never be one. So instead of trying to tell the world how worthy your life is for the things and people around you, live it for yourself. Do not mind those people who see nothing good in you because whatever you do, they will never appreciate you. When you find time to value yourself, your future self will thank you because you will become more passionate. You will become aware of what you can do and what you can become. You will become you. “You’ll love yourself more when you set limits or say no to work, love, or activities that deplete or harm you physically, emotionally and spiritually, or express poorly who you are.” Deborah Khoshaba Psy.D. said.
Listen To What Your Mind And Heart Tell You
Listen to what your heart and mind tell you because your future self needs it. Nothing is satisfying in everyone’s life than to be able to decide for yourself. But be mindful, creating a decision that gets based on mind or heart alone is never going to work. So before you end up making mistakes, you have to make sure that your decisions undergo emotional and mental balance. Do not make decisions without using both. Never judge with what you see, but never misunderstand what you feel.
Take Care Of Yourself
No one is going to care about yourself but you. Yes, some people will care. But they will not make a move to do it because they are not obliged. You have to bring the balance in your life and control the things that require your full attention. Save yourself from anxiety, stress, and depression. Live life the way you want it, provided that you can handle it no matter what. Listen to your mind and body. Take quality care of your emotional, physical, spiritual, and mental health. There is a guarantee that your future you will benefit from your effort. “Prioritizing daily self-care and making efforts to take action. Accepting that daily self-care is hard work and challenging.” Edna M. Esnil, PsyD said.
Never Allow Negativity To Enter Your Life
Regardless of the negative things being family, friends, and significant other, never let them ruin your composure. Your future self will become appreciative towards your effort in keeping yourself calm and with peace. Do not allow guilt to control your decisions, and do not let self-doubt to ruin your state of mind. Always consider choosing what is best for your overall development. Do not complain about things, and look for ways to make it better. “Negative thoughts are just a part of life, but they don’t have to consume you. Instead of trying to ignore those thoughts altogether, try countering them with positive statements.” Licensed clinical psychologist John Mayer, Ph.D. said.
There is no way you can handle the future encounter. However, when you learn to accept the necessity of change, you will see that things in life are much more significant.
Your friends can become one of the most critical persons in your life. They teach you a lot of lessons. They provide value in everything you do, and they become the foundation of your self-improvement decisions. However, not all of them are as beneficial as you thought they would be. Some only want nothing but to take advantage of you. Most of the times, they become the source of your emotional and mental suffering. With that, your ability to know which ones to keep is essential in maintaining your overall health and development. So here are the types of friends you should avoid.
“I take Yours, But You Can’t Take Mine.”
Most types of friendship give and take. When you offer them something, they offer something in return. However, some individuals take so much of your time and energy but are not willing to sacrifice theirs. These people have the mentality that consuming something from you is their primary purpose. But when you are the one who wants something from them, those things become an off-limits. These types of friends are selfish and undeniably self-centered. Erika Martinez, PsyD once said, “You have to get really clear with yourself first about what’s motivating you when you agree to do someone else a favor.”
“I Will Help, But Give Something In Return”
“Your environment, both your social and natural surroundings, can greatly impact how you feel.” Marjie L. Roddick, MA, NCC, LMHC said. It is vital to recognize that friendship is something that requires effort. It is often successful when two parties know their responsibilities to each other. But when your friends are only doing things for you because they benefit from it, you should consider cutting them off. These people will not only take something from you but will also make you feel that you owe them the world. Their attitudes get stuck in the idea that whatever they do for you are something that you should thank them forever.
“I’m Here Because I Need You”
Friends should be there for you when you need them, and not the other way around. When these people stick around because they know they can gain something, they are not the ones you need. These types of friends mostly choose you and follow you because they know you will give them something. But when you happen to ignore their needs and start to refuse to all their demands, they will leave you in an instant.
“It Is Always A No For Me”
Karen R. Koenig, MEd, LCSW used to say, “Nothing ruins self-esteem like surrounding yourself with people who abuse or neglect you.” When you have these types of friends that always say no and does not want to be involved in your life, you should leave them immediately. These ungrateful people will never agree to anything you do or say. These people’s lives are focused on making you feel bad about yourself. They do not support your ideas, and they never appreciate your worth. You have to avoid these types of friends because they are draining, exhausting, and full of shit.