July 31, 2012

Never stop being whimsical.

Oh, the places you'll go!

Sometimes, the questions are complicated 
        and the answers are simple.

This video was compiled of footage shot at Burning Man 2011; be sure to appreciate it's message as much as it's commitment to ingenuity and individuality.

July 25, 2012

Love is...

Do you want me to tell you something really subversive?
Love is everything it's cracked up to be.
That's why people are so cynical about it. . . .
It really is worth fighting for,
being brave for, risking everything for.
And the trouble is, if you don't risk anything, you risk even more.

Wild thing.

Once a little boy sent me a charming card with a little drawing on it. I loved it. I answer all my children’s letters — sometimes very hastily — but this one I lingered over. I sent him a card and I drew a picture of a Wild Thing on it. I wrote, “Dear Jim: I loved your card.” Then I got a letter back from his mother and she said, “Jim loved your card so much he ate it.” That to me was one of the highest compliments I’ve ever received. He didn’t care that it was an original Maurice Sendak drawing or anything. He saw it, he loved it, he ate it. 
        —Maurice Sendak

Be soft...

Be soft.

Do not let the world make you hard.
Do not let the pain make you hate.
Do not let the bitterness steal your sweetness.
Take pride that even though the rest of the world may disagree,
you still believe it to be a beautiful place.

12 Truths

What becomes known to us is often advice we wish we would have been served at birth; however, that which we learn throughout is what dictates whom we become. What follows are 12 truths that have been passed down to me from a wise, wise man.

  1. Everything is as it should be.  It’s crazy how you always end up where you’re meant to be – how even the most tragic and stressful situations eventually teach you important lessons that you never dreamed you were going to learn.  Remember, oftentimes when things are falling apart, they are actually falling into place.

  2. Not until you are lost in this world can you begin to find your true self.  Realizing you are lost is the first step to living the life you want.  The second step is leaving the life you don’t want.  Making a big life change is pretty scary.  But you know what’s even scarier?  Regret.  Vision without action is a daydream, and action without vision is a nightmare.  Your heart is free, have the courage to follow it.  Read Awaken the Giant Within.

  3. It’s usually the deepest pain which empowers you to grow to your full potential.  It’s the scary, stressful choices that end up being the most worthwhile.  Without pain, there would be no change.  But remember, pain, just like everything in life, is meant to be learned from and then released.

  4. One of the hardest decisions you will ever face in life is choosing whether to walk away or take another step forward.  If you catch yourself in a cycle of trying to change someone, or defending yourself again someone who is trying to change you, walk away.  But if you are pursuing a dream, take another step.  And don’t forget that sometimes this step will involve modifying your dream, or planning a new one – it’s OK to change your mind or have more than one dream.

  5. You have to take care of yourself first.  Before befriending others, you have to be your own friend.  Before correcting others, you have to correct yourself.  Before making others happy, you have to make yourself happy.  It’s not called selfishness, it’s called personal development.  Once you balance yourself, only then can you balance the world around you.  Read Psycho-Cybernetics.

  6. One of the greatest freedoms is truly not caring what everyone else thinks of you.  As long as you are worried about what others think of you, you are owned by them.  Only when you require no approval from outside yourself, can you own yourself.

  7. You may need to be single for awhile before you realize that, although the co-owned belongings from your failed relationships might not have been divided equally, the issues that destroyed the relationships likely were.  For how can you stand confidently alone, or see the same issues arising in your newest relationship, and not realize which broken pieces belong to you?  Owning your issues, and dealing with them, will make you far happier in the long run, than owning anything else in this world.

  8. The only thing you can absolutely control is how you react to things out of your control.  The more you can adapt to the situations in life, the more powerful your highs will be, and the more quickly you’ll be able to bounce back from the lows in your life.  Put most simply: being at peace means being in a state of complete acceptance of all that is, right here, right now.

  9. Some people will lie to you.  Remember, an honest enemy is better than a friend who lies.  Pay less attention to what people say, and more attention to what they do.  Their actions will show you the truth, which will help you measure the true quality of your relationship in the long-term.

  10. If you concentrate on what you don’t have, you will never have enough.  If you are thankful for what you do have, you will end up having even more.  Happiness resides not in possessions, and not in gold; happiness dwells in the soul.  Abundance is not about how much you have, it’s how you feel about what you have.  When you take things for granted, your happiness gets taken away.  Read The Happiness Project.

  11. Yes, you have failed in the past.  But don’t judge yourself by your past, you don’t live there anymore.  Just because you’re not where you want to be today doesn’t mean you won’t be there someday.  You can turn it all around in the blink of an eye by making a simple choice to stand back up – to try again, to love again, to live again, and to dream again.

  12. Everything is going to be alright; maybe not today, but eventually.  There will be times when it seems like everything that could possibly go wrong is going wrong.  And you might feel like you will be stuck in this rut forever, but you won’t.  Sure the sun stops shining sometimes, and you may get a huge thunderstorm or two, but eventually the sun will come out to shine.  Sometimes it’s just a matter of us staying as positive as possible in order to make it to see the sunshine break through the clouds again.

So few want to be rebels anymore...

Today will be a good day.

Life sometimes takes you by surprise; at 22, I am nowhere near the place I thought I'd be two years ago. I've lived, loved, learned, cried, smiled, and most of all--grown!
            Among my most recent developments, I've come to some very drastic life conclusions:

-As a recent graduate in Social Policy, I'm joining the Peace Corps. It's been a lifelong dream; and I refuse to be a 50-year old woman filled with regret over the dreams I never chased.

My knight

-I've found the love of my life, and our relationship sure does have its ups and downs. Yet throughout it all, I've never had this kind of mutual respect and companionship before. It is truly rewarding.

Momma and Poppa Layne

-I am now coming into my own; I've lived on my own (encompassing the dependence upon Ramen noodles and poor life choices) and am now living back with my parents.

Grandma and Grandpa Layne

-That being said, my new lifestyle is definitely an adjustment. I'm not saying it's easy, and we maintain our fair share of fights.

The older but younger sister, Sarah: the free-spirit who helps to give me wings

My adoringly loveable older sister, Sallie; full of wise advise and silly faces

-However, if college has taught me nothing else--it has reminded me that family is truly the most important thing a person can have. Legal definitions aside, whether related by blood, law, faith, or mutual understanding--family is something you can always rely on. Never forget it.

Da' crew: they make my life go 'round.

July 24, 2012

What you thought you needed...

Develop an interest in life as you see it; the people, things, literature, music - the world is so rich, simply throbbing with rich treasures, beautiful souls and interesting people. Forget yourself.