Day: July 11, 2017

AWARD: Sunshine Blogger #5

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Many thanks to Roda @ GrowingSelf for nominating me for this award. I’ve been nominated before, but these are new questions, so I must do it all over again. And I’d do anything Roda asked, as she is a wonderful, amazing and brilliant friend who deserved tremendous recognition. So please go visit her site if you haven’t seen it!!!

What is the Sunshine Blogger Award?

The Sunshine Blogger Award is given to those who are creative, positive and inspiring, while spreading sunshine to the blogging community.

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How Does It Work:

  • Thank the person(s) who nominated you in a blog post and link back to their blog
  •  Answer the 11 questions sent by the person who nominated you
  •  Nominate 11 new blogs to receive the award and write them 11 new questions
  • List the rules and display the Sunshine Blogger Award logo on your post and/or on your blog

Questions from Roda to Me:

  • Use one word to describe yourself.
    • Introspective, as I am always trying to figure out how to learn more about myself.
  • What is your favorite season? Why?
    • Autumn. The temperature. The holidays. The colors. The smells. The sounds. The leaves. 
  • Are you a city mouse or a country mouse?
    • I live in the city. But I think I’d like to move to the country now.
  • What is your superpower?
    • I can always find something to write about, searching for ways to hopefully inspire and captivate friends with my creative, words and imagination.
  • Why do you write?
    • There is so much going on in my head that I can’t stop the characters, the plots and the ideas from literally popping out. I could be walking across the street and an entire novel will unveil itself in those two minutes. I think I might have a few people trapped up there, and if I don’t let them out, they will torture me. Which means I then in turn torture all of you. So, when you think about it, it’s a good thing I’m writing. Right?
  • What is your favorite book? (Jay and Nel – just one!)
    • I was called out in this question as 1 of the 2 problem children, so I best be on good behavior: Lately… And Then There Were None by Agatha Christie.
  • What brings you JOY?
    • People finding their happiness and inspiration. Learning to love yourself and treating others properly.
  • What is your favorite fruit?
    • Is an avocado fruit? I thought if it had a giant seed or nut, it had to be. If it’s not, then maybe bananas. Love the flavor. Poor Nel is having a heart attack on me right now.
  • Who is your role model? Why?
    • I actually don’t have one single person. I admire traits and actions in the people I consider close friends. They inspire me.
  • If you could visit any place in the world, where would you go?
    • Cotswolds in England… I want to live there. It’s the best place on Earth.
  • What do you love most about YOU?
    • That I’m learning to appreciate my voice and perspective on life, and it actually might be something valuable to other people. I used to think I had no special talents. Now I feel like maybe I’m supposed to put all these communication skills and creativity to good use for others.

 

Since I’ve been nominated for this a few times before, I’m not going to nominate anyone specifically, as I’ve doing a new feature on my 365 Daily Challenge where each day, I pick a fellow blogger who inspires me with sunshine… and Roda was the first one! so that’s where to find my nominations… and I’ve got the next 11 people picked out already… so watch out, Friends! Jay’s coming to get you…

 

About Me

I’m Jay and I live in NYC. By profession, I work in technology. By passion, I work in writing. I’ve always been a reader. And now I’m a daily blogger. I decided to start my own version of the “365 Daily Challenge” where since March 13, 2017, I’ve posted a characteristic either I currently embody or one I’d like to embody in the future. 365 days of reflection to discover who I am and what I want out of life.

The goal: Knowledge. Acceptance. Understanding. Optimization. Happiness. Help. For myself. For others. And if all else fails, humor. When I’m finished in one year, I hope to have more answers about the future and what I will do with the remainder of my life. All aspects to be considered. It’s not just about a career, hobbies, residence, activities, efforts, et al. It’s meant to be a comprehensive study and reflection from an ordinary man. Not a doctor. Not a therapist. Not a friend. Not an encyclopedia full of prior research. Just pure thought, a blogged journal with true honesty.

Join the fun and read a new post each day, or check out my book reviews, TV/Film reviews or favorite vacation spots. And feel free to like, rate, comment or take the poll for each post. Note: All written content is my original creation and copyrighted to me, but the graphics and images were linked from other sites and belong to them. Many thanks to their original creators.

 

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365 Challenge: Day 121 – Naked

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Naked: not covered by any clothing, nude; devoid of concealment or disguise

naked

 

Around 3:15 this morning, a certain lovable little shiba inu took it upon himself to grow unsettled in the bed, circling three or four times, before roughly throwing his 20 lbs. of bulk against by thigh. Startled by said lovable little creature, I found myself awake and unable to quickly fall back asleep. Always one to use my time wisely (don’t even bring up yesterday’s post or I’ll have to hurt forgive you), I thought about the 365 Daily Challenge for today. The first word that popped into my head was ‘naked.’ And although I tried to think of a few other words, I kept returning to the word ‘naked,’ wondering how I might pull off such a post without it coming across as vulgar. And after 120 ‘365’ challenges, 500 book reviews and about a hundred other posts, you know by now, I’m not a vulgar person.

Ask yourself this question: Am I brave enough to walk into a room full of people, some of whom I know and some of whom I do not know, while I am completely naked?

{Aside: Jay, you have started to go off the deep end a little bit. I’m not sure I can support such a behavior if you continue down this path.}

I already know my answer is ‘yes,’ as it’s happened before. But I suppose it would only occur again under somewhat comfortable conditions. Let me try to redeem myself here…

Being naked physically means you are wearing no clothes. Every part of your body is exposed for others to see you in all your supposed glory; essentially, nothing is left to the imagination and you are unable to hide from the world. We’re born this way. Doctors and nurses often see us this way. Other people in a public fitness center or school locker room get a preview. Anyone you are intimate with experiences this side of you. So it’s not an unheard of situation, right?  OK, keep those thoughts on hold for a little bit longer. And no, I’m not advocating nudity nor am I a member of or interested in joining a nudist colony.

What about being naked emotionally… stripped down so there are no barriers between what you are thinking or feeling and the people in your life. Naked can also apply to the walls or shields that prevent us from being open and honest with others about what is going on inside our head. Under those conditions, I’m a fairly naked person. Over the course of the past 120 days, I’ve been naked to anyone who happens to read my 365 posts. I’ve covered a wide variety of topics where I’ve shown some silly and stupid decisions I’ve made, a few embarrassing moments, and a couple of personal desires or needs that might end up never being achieved. For me, I no longer feel a need to hide behind any walls that often function as a shelter or protection from pain, fear, disappointment and hurt. It doesn’t always work, and sometimes I hold back a little bit; however, for the most part, I feel free and open with what’s going on in my life, how I make my decisions and what I am hoping to accomplish. So I share it with you.

This method is definitely not for everyone. And I wouldn’t even recommend it without truly thinking about all the implications that could occur, up to and including how you handle difficult situations. But the one thing I’ve been learning in the last few months and over the last year of my life, is that it doesn’t matter what other people think of me or my life or my situation. If someone wants to laugh, ridicule, or berate me for something I’ve chosen to do, that’s their problem. Not mine. If I feel good about it, then that’s what counts. If I worry about what others will do or say, then perhaps I’m not quite comfortable enough with my own decision to proceed. And if that’s the case, it’s totally OK, as that just means you need more time to figure out the right time and place to move forward.

So if someone thinks I am wasting time by not going back to work more quickly… or people felt writing a blog was too self-indulgent… or searching for an agent was a useless activity… {no one is actually saying any of these things to me, btw} — it ends up being their problem and issue, and I can erase those opinions from my mind as long as I feel good about what it is I’m doing. So let’s flip back to the concept of not only being naked in front of others with your thoughts and feelings, but with your body. How is that any different and why am I bringing it up today?

Our bodies are no different than our emotions and ideas. It’s just another aspect of who we are — cells that create a physical shape and form versus cells that produce words and thoughts. For the most part, you can’t change your body without massive surgery or risk. If you’ve got wide hips, that’s what you were given. If you have a flat butt, oh well, that’s life. If your eyes are set too far apart, deal with it. If something is too big or too small, it is what it is. I am not being flippant about these issues, as I know very well how much they can cause pain and hurt, especially when you’ve been singled out by someone purely for the sake of their tasteless and childish need to laugh at something rather than at their own expense. And I’m not saying it’s time everyone just strip down and walk around naked. I’m simply saying if we can learn to love who we are as people for our personalities, we can learn to love our bodies. We can work on them as much as we need to for the sake of health and relaxation, but to obsess over any specific part or area that you truly cannot change will only hurt you more than you know.

And that’s why I’m not so worried about being naked anymore. As I age, and I realize what I do and don’t have control over, I am learning to just let things go as I do with decisions, missed opportunities and fears. I am short. I will never have that slender upper torso that stretches on forever, something I’ve always desired. And when I wore a tighter than usual grey polo yesterday, I almost took the shirt off because it didn’t land in the way I wanted it to land around my waist. It made me look stocky. Then I told myself no beach time this summer… you didn’t fix your body like you said you wanted to. But I can’t fix it. I’m short. It ain’t gonna happen the way I want it to… so I will go to the beach. And I will leave my shirt off. And I will be happy about it.

Being naked physically is just like being naked emotionally. Whether someone sees you make a mistake during a public speech or notices the fine lines and crow’s feet appearing on your face, they might still judge you — but that’s their problem, not yours. No, I’m not going to start parading around naked. Nor do I suggest you do either. Even if you are the world’s most attractive naked person. But I am suggesting we all learn to get comfortable with who we are and what we do and don’t have. And if someone wants to judge me for wide hips or a stocky torso or whatever it is I’m worried about that day, or making up that day… so be it… judge away. I’ll be busy making something of myself and staying happy.

Of everything I’ve said and believe, the most important thing in all of this — at least to me — is that I’m remembered for being authentic and genuine, unafraid to share anything and comfortable in my own skin enough to help others find their own happiness in these areas. In the end, whether I’m naked without clothes or naked without a barrier to my thoughts, I’m showing the world the real me is good enough to put it all out there. And what happens in someone else’s mind is their concern. Not mine.

Last point… today’s post was mostly theoretical in that I don’t feel judged, nothing has happened to make me feel bad about myself, nor am I worried about what other people are thinking and trying to convince myself it’ll be OK. I’m actually in a very strong place in this area, but I also want all my friends to be there, too. So that’s where this share came from. And oh yeah, aren’t you no longer afraid I was going to share a naked picture of myself in today’s 365 Daily Challenge? Phew… that would have been awkward for you. Cause it obviously wouldn’t have been for me based on what I’ve said, right?

 

RECOMMENDED BLOGGER

  • Today’s 365 Daily Challenge recommended blogger to know is Noriko (AKA Norin) @ BookfiendSite because of my lovely little Ryder (shiba inu dog) keeping me awake last night… No, Noriko wasn’t texting me all night, but when I think of shiba inus, I think of her as she’s from Japan, which is where Ryder originally came from. Noriko and I probably met close to 2 months ago and now chat on both Goodreads and WordPress. She’s almost always online, able to chat and has a very charming approach to books and life. Noriko reads a lot and has been the #1 reviewer on Goodreads in Japan. She takes on all different genres and is reading a few books I recommended this summer. I hope the Ken Follett Pillars series doesn’t put her over the edge. What’s special about Noriko is how kind and thoughtful she is, always leaving beautiful comments on your posts, asking brilliant questions and interacting in a very immersive and connected way. I enjoy chatting with her, look forward to her book reviews, as they always provide fantastic insight into the meaning of the story, the plot and the characters. If you love books, she’s someone to know. If you want to get to know someone from the another country, she’d be a good addition to your followed blogs. Please find a few minutes to peruse her site and let her know what you think of it!

 

About Me & the “365 Daily Challenge”

I’m Jay and I live in NYC. By profession, I work in technology. By passion, I work in writing. I’ve always been a reader. And now I’m a daily blogger. I decided to start my own version of the “365 Daily Challenge” where since March 13, 2017, I’ve posted a characteristic either I currently embody or one I’d like to embody in the future. 365 days of reflection to discover who I am and what I want out of life.

The goal: Knowledge. Acceptance. Understanding. Optimization. Happiness. Help. For myself. For others. And if all else fails, humor. When I’m finished in one year, I hope to have more answers about the future and what I will do with the remainder of my life. All aspects to be considered. It’s not just about a career, hobbies, residence, activities, efforts, et al. It’s meant to be a comprehensive study and reflection from an ordinary man. Not a doctor. Not a therapist. Not a friend. Not an encyclopedia full of prior research. Just pure thought, a blogged journal with true honesty.

Join the fun and read a new post each day, or check out my book reviews, TV/Film reviews or favorite vacation spots. And feel free to like, rate, comment or take the poll for each post. Note: All written content is my original creation and copyrighted to me, but the graphics and images were linked from other sites and belong to them. Many thanks to their original creators.