I love summer braids, I think it’s a great way to keep your hair in check when you’re at the beach, but ladies, braids are hot this season! Are you looking for a new and inventive way to do a braid this summer? I’ve got your back, fashionistas! I’ve got the top 4 summer braids that you’ll be able to sport all year long!
Happy Pride NYC — you deserve it! Party on gays! My partner and I had the chance to head to the Boston pride earlier this June and I’ve got to say, it was beautiful, wonderful and absolutely one of the best experiences ever. Not only was it thrilling to be with other gays that understand the challenges, but it was peaceful and full of colorful rainbow flags flying everywhere. Enjoy your day NYC, you deserve it and remember, love is love!
I am who I am.
I won’t change.
What you see is what you get.
Everyone is different, everyone is unique in their own way and that is why life is so fun and meeting new people is so exciting. We all have something different to offer. Some of us know how to write and perform incredible and inspiring music, some of us can run for miles and miles without stopping, some of us can do mathematical equations without hesitation – we all have different talents and things to bring to the table.
If we were all the same then life would be so boring. Being an individual is important and you should act how you feel. Granted sometimes it’s not always appropriate to be a loud mouth or to be really serious, but being mindful of that you should do what you want and express yourself.
I am a loud, bold, sarcastic, opinionated person. I won’t change. What are you like? Are you shy? Are you loud? Do you like to let your opinion be known or keep it to yourself? Whatever answer you had for these questions – don’t change. You are an individual and you are wonderful.
Sometimes we sit and wonder, why do I do that or why did I do that? Why do I act like this? Is this why I’m single? Is this why I fought with my significant other? Is this why this happened? We run though 999,999 different scenarios of why we act a certain way sometimes, but we shouldn’t. If we didn’t act like ourselves then who would we be? If there weren’t any funny people then we wouldn’t know who was serious. If there weren’t any jerks then we wouldn’t know who the nice people were. If we were all exactly the same then what excitement would there be?
It’s late (for me) and I was about to go to bed, but then (I know, you’re shocked by the BUT THEN…moving on…) I read a picture that my friend posted online. It was a picture of a note that said: “What screws us up most in life is the picture in our head of how it’s supposed to be.” After reading that, I knew I had to write about it.
That note is so true. We fight with ourselves daily about how things are going in our life, as if someone is taking notes on our lives and scoring us on how we’re doing. If we miss one day of going to the gym or a date goes wrong then we’re out of whack as if we just lost 100 points in some professional competition. But really it’s in our imagination.
Why do we have to constantly battle with ourselves? Why do we make ourselves feel bad when we don’t do EXACTLY what we thought we were going to? We all need to remember that, yes, it is good to plan. In fact, it is very important to plan and if you ask any one of my friends then they’d probably tell you I plan to much and it’s annoying, but nonetheless, we need to also remember that our lives don’t always have to go according to plan.
I thought that by the time I was 23 I’d be all put together in the perfect job with a perfect significant other, etc etc. Am I there? No. Am I in a horrible terrible place far away from that? No, that’s not it either. I’m in a job I enjoy and I’m working my way up and I’m single. Should I get all bent out of shape because I’m not exactly where I thought I’d be? No, because you never know how life is going to go and you should work as hard as you can to get it to be exactly where you want it, but you always need to remember that there will be unplanned roadblocks. And sometimes it’s not even necessarily a “roadblock,” it’s just something else you have to do in life before you get to exactly where you need to go. You’re probably going, “ummm…hey stupid, they call that a roadblock…,” but I think that word has a negative connotation, so let’s say a life pit stop instead of a roadblock.
So you had a life pit stop, I won’t say whatever and shrug because that won’t get you ANYWHERE, and that is NOT what you want. But don’t beat yourself up and get upset because you know where that gets you? Even further away from where you want to be. Here’s one of my self-proclaimed famous three step plans on how to solve getting out of/around a life pit stop:
1. Focus on what your original goal was
2. Brainstorm ways to get to that original goal or modify the goal (maybe you truly want something different or should go in a different direction that better suits you)
3. Pick yourself up and implement your new plan on how to get to your new goal
It sounds pretty easy, but I know that it’s much easier said that done. If you actually do that though then you’ll be able to enjoy life more and live in the moment we’re living NOW.
We’re all different for a reason and we all have different experiences at different times for different reasons. If we all found the perfect job, the perfect person, the perfect house , etc. all at the same time then how would we even know what’s perfect anymore?
If we always just got everything we wanted handed to us then would we even know what we want anymore? If we don’t have to work hard for anything or dream about anything then would we even have as goals and aspirations? We wouldn’t have any because we’d have everything and that’s just not how life is.
So think to yourself right now – are you EXACTLY where you want to be? If not, think about how to get there. Think about what you want and what you need to do to get it. So you fail? Okay, well then keep trying or change your course of action or maybe even your end goal and just keep going. But don’t bring yourself down, sometimes getting what you want takes time. Everyone is different and we’ll all get the things we want at different times and in different ways. You just have to keep believing in yourself and live as happily and as best as you can each day and stop trying to picture false images in your head of EXACTLY how your life should be right now. Just enjoy right now and work towards what you want in the future and you’ll eventually get there, I believe in you, so how about you start believing in yourself too? Starting now…
You know what they say, “when life throws you lemons…throw them back at and say, hey, cut it out LIFE.”
Well, maybe that’s not quite it, but I think you could say that too. Because, in my opinion, when you come to a roadblock in life you just need to keep going. Life isn’t always made to be easy. It’s hard and frustrating and sometimes just down right confusing.
So let’s try to focus on the good days. The ones where your stomach hurts because you’ve been laughing so hard or the ones where you can’t stop smiling because you realize you have the best friends and family in the world. Think of those days when you’re down.
And do things that make you happy. If you are miserable at work, reevaluate what you are doing. Why should you stay in a job you don’t like? Now I know you’re say, “Listen here, ALI NANDERS, it’s not that easy! I can’t just quit my job and have no plan!” Well…before you start yelling at me, let me finish…think about what your true passions are and work towards that. Figure out what you love to do and what you want to do for a career. As humans, we work so much, so why waste that time being miserable?
Maybe you’re content with what you do, that’s fine, you don’t have to have the perfect job, in fact most people don’t and that’s okay. No one is expected to wake up EVERY single morning and go, “WOOHOO, workin’ today, heck yes, I LOVE LIFE!” If you wake up every day like that, AWESOME, you are lucky. But most of us don’t do that. We should work towards that though. Maybe if it’s not our actual job then it should be something we try to involve ourselves in. Maybe if you want to be a singer/songwriter then you try to go to open mic nights or join a local band. It doesn’t have to be your job all the time, but at least you’re finding something to have a passion for, something that drives and motivates you to live everyday and be happy. Figure out what will make you happy that way.
And love, oh love. That can make people feel like they are on top of the world…or it can make them feel hopeless. If you have love, it is the best feeling you can have. But who is to say that if you aren’t with someone then you should be sad or lonely? Not to be cheesy or anything here, but I do have to say (and don’t judge me for this…) that Kelly Clarkson actually says it well in her song “Stronger” when she says, “Doesn’t mean I’m lonely when I’m alone.” You don’t have to feel miserable just because you don’t have love from a significant other. It’s definitely hard to feel that way sometimes when you’re at work and you hear people talking about their husbands and wives or boyfriends and girlfriends or on Valentine’s Day when everyone posts pictures of their flowers and chocolates on Facebook. Those little things can make it hard. But it’s not about having another person around to make you happy. You need to make yourself happy too. And that’s where doing what you enjoy comes into play. If you’re not doing what makes you happy and you’re not trying to reach the dreams you’ve made for yourself then you’ll start searching for someone to fill that void and it won’t work. Find what makes you happy and content before trying to use someone else to do it.
And never settle. If you settle then you’ll be even more miserable than before. You can pretend and fake something but you have to always remember that pretending doesn’t make it real. You have to be honest with yourself and with whoever you are with. If you have to wait it out a while – weeks, months, years – isn’t it worth it to find true happiness with another person? Don’t waste your time or anyone else’s by cheating or crying or being dissatisfied with where you are in a relationship. Move on, figure out what you want, maybe work on yourself for a while, and eventually you’ll find something wonderful.
I do believe there is someone for everyone. Sometimes you lose all faith and think that no one will every come around, but they will, this coming from a single person by the way. For every nerd, jock, genius, rock star, etc. there is a person you were meant to be with. It’s just a matter of finding that person, letting life work it’s “magic,” so to speak, and waiting for the right “one” to come along. Don’t force anything because if you do…you’re settling.
So go forward in life and look to the future with positivity. Work towards making yourself love life. We are all here for a reason and we all have a purpose. So don’t waste your time with sadness or drama or anger. Spend your time wisely by enjoying life with loved ones and by finding your passions in life. I challenge you to try and do those things and to focus on embracing new experiences and staying positive.
And then when life throws you lemons…you can just squash them, keep on moving forward, and never look back.
Okay, first off, can I just go off on a little rant here? Let’s talk about Christmas lights. I’m all for putting up some twinkly little lights around your roof, maybe even having some displays on your front lawn, but let’s get friggin’ serious here. Christmas lights nowadays are INSANE. When I lived back in Michigan (hey, it’s not all the Ghetto — but most everyone does work for GM, my dad included), my neighbors right next to me went all out for Christmas. I’m talking lights everywhere, displays all over, it looked like a friggin’ orb of light vomited into their front yard. Drove me effin’ nuts! Who wants to wake up to that mess?
Now, not only are people obsessed with putting up Christmas lights (there is even a show called Extreme Christmas Lights — google it), but they are obsessed with making it go in sync with music. Watch the videos below and tell me that is not obsessive!
Okay, so I admit, I like the Nightmare Before Christmas one, but still! What do you guys think?
It’s almost Christmas y’all and I gotta say, there are just some Christmas movies that I — personally can’t live without. They might be stupid, but they are totally, for real, 100% my traditional Christmas movies that I love. So — let’s start a little count-down shall we? I’ll reveal one Christmas movie per day that I love and hey, maybe you’ll comment and tell me what Christmas movies you love. So let’s get this started!