Recall

I remember how when we started going to high school, it was all about becoming famous and being liked by everyone. Back when Instagram had only but launched and Facebook was still leading the social media empire. It was all about having more likes on your profile pictures than anyone else.

It was so stupid because once you had reached some kind of fame (which is ridiculous in itself because our population consists of about 3 people)  rumors started. We wanted to be who people talked about but we wanted people to have good opinions about us. Rumors, however are not usually positive and when we heard about how other people thought we were, all we wanted was being left alone.

Back then, Formspring was still a thing and for a year or so it was the hotspot for rumors. People answered questions about other people, spreading lies to restore their own image. Acting and reacting. We knew that lies about us were being told, yet when we heard something about someone else, we didn’t think twice, believed and passed it on.

I don’t know why  people feel the need to be known by everyone. It might just be some sort of transition phase, part of growing up. I think that it’s the result of social pressure, that we put on ourselves. We think that we’re good people when others believe we are. We give others too much control over our self-esteem and self-evaluation. We fear to lose our individuality and want to stand out, have something that others want, do something others can’t.

Now, looking back to this period, I feel like I spent too much time comparing myself to others. While I enjoyed growing up in this society( and still do), I think I could’ve been happier if this comparison hadn’t taken place to this extent.

Uniqueness is wealth. Compare yourself to who you were yesterday, not other people.

Invent yourself, CK


“How much time he gains who does not look to see what his neighbour says or does or thinks, but only at what he does himself, to make it just and holy.” ― Marcus Aurelius, Meditations

nicotine is out

In times of endless possibilities to keep in touch with others, we’ve become more anti-social than ever. We’re slowly becoming a society full of people who live in their phones , rather than using it as a tool. The roles are reversed, phones have started telling their owners what to do. They own people.

The various profiles we created to fake a perfect life, made us so aware of how we’re supposed to present ourselves, to show the best of us in every situation. We’re worried that people will notice that this is not who we are in real life. We’re no longer hiding behind false fronts, we have turned into them.

On the one hand, when we’re in public, we’re looking at our phones, pretending to be really busy, hoping no one looks at us or judges us. As soon as we look up, we see other people avoiding social contact in just the same way, for what?

On the other hand we’re seeking social contact, we’re looking for social interaction. That’s something you can’t find on a phone, yet we replace real, face to face communication with chats. We’re becoming robots, machines, addicted to our phones. While social networks are meant to communicate, we’re losing the ability to actually keep up a real conversation, simply because we’re no longer used to it. An online chat is not an alternative to a real conversation.

We’re bored of reality, we think that we can find real life on the internet and hope to find purpose on our phones, where all we really find are Donald Trump memes. How  do people not realize that phones are keeping them from living? How much more could we do if  we spent this time, looking down at phones, to improve our lives and change the world around us. We’re so keen to find out who we are, who we want to be, yet we waste our time because we’re afraid of real life and would rather be entertained. In my view, exchanging personal growth with entertainment is not too great of a deal.

You’re human, perfection is not an option, accept it. Don’t hide who you are. Put down your phone  and talk to the people you love.

Invent yourself,CK


The more social media we have, the more we think we’re connecting, yet we are really disconnecting from each other. – JR

Sunsets

When was the last time you watched the sunset without taking out your phone to take pictures? Why do we think that it is more important to show other people what we see than enjoying the happy moments of life?  When did you last see something that gave you the shivers? When were you last astonished by something you saw?

I think we have lost vision for the beautiful things of life.  There seems to be nothing left that leaves us stunned. We take pictures of moments and move on. We have forgotten how to enjoy. You’ll say you can still enjoy sunsets, sunrises, rainbows- whatever Nature provides us with -before or after taking pictures, but why has it become more important to save a moment than to treasure it?
We live in a time in which it is more important to show people that our life is great than actually trying to make the best of our life.

Instagram photos, Facebook profile pictures and  Snapchat stories have become a tool to show off the great life we pretend to live. We want people to think that we’re having fun all the time, that we don’t have to worry – that we live the life they want to live.

But the truth is that no one actually lives the life they pretend to live. We hide behind a mask on social media because we’d love to believe that what we show other people of ourselves is who we really are, yet we know that we can only pretend to believe it, knowing deep down that it’s not true. Ironically, we still believe that other people do actually live the life they show us, waking our need to pretend we live an even better life.

Once we realize that social media is not a representation of our real lives, but only a dream world we pretend to live in, we’ll no longer feel the need to pretend living a perfect life, because such a thing as a perfect life does not exist.

We’re actors in our lives, pretendin’ to be who we want people to think we are. -Simone Elkeles

Invent yourself,CK

We’re the drunk generation

No, we’re not the first generation to drink alcohol, nor will we be the last, but I believe that you can’t deny that we incarnate being drunk and have brought it to another level, for we do not only need it for the sole purpose of having fun anymore. We’re in desperate need for it. Why? Because deep down we need social contact, we need love, yet giving love is something we’ve unlearnt somewhere on our way.

The only time we are accessible- and can spread this social love, is when we forget about looking good, when we don’t care what other people think anymore. In times of social pressure and beauty ideals we feel we have to live up to, alcohol seems to be the only solution to enjoy ourselves.

We drink on every occasion; On birthdays, on days that are not our birthdays, when we’re happy, when we’re sad, when we party, when we mourn. There’s no time when alcohol wouldn’t be appropriate. It has become a fundamental part of our all lives.

Being able to say we were drunk, allows us to do all the things we want to do, but don’t have the guts to when we’re sober, afraid of not being accepted anymore, of being laughed at. When we’re drunk, we like to talk to people we don’t know and I think this is something we all should do more often, not when we’re drunk, necessarily. Flirting becomes really easy, because it is a natural thing to do.

To all people saying ‘You don’t need alcohol to have fun’ -Yes you’re completely right, but I need alcohol to free myself from worries and self-awareness, to accept my flaws and openly admit that I seek social contact and love. It is sad that we seem to achieve this state only with the help of a drug, (because that’s what alcohol is in the end), but that’s the way our generation works.

To say alcohol does no good is wrong. To say it does no harm is wrong. But I’d rather be liberated from my insecurities and harm my body, than be healthy and enchained for all my life.

Invent yourself,CK

Spend time with the right people

There’s nothing better than spending your time with the friends you love and knowing that they will still be your friends in a few years.

Rather than trying to invest your time in all sorts of activities, invest it in the right people. When you’re in good company it doesn’t matter what you do. It’s really irrelevant whether you’re out drinking expensive champagne in one of those fancy overpriced bars or if you’re bumming around at your house drinking Ice Tea.

If you’re simply checking off your to-do list, without taking care of whom you’re checking it off with, you’ll end up regretting it.

However, often we don’t realize that the people we’re spending time with right now, are not people that’ll stay in our life. That does not mean that you can’t have a good time with people who you know won’t be part of your life in 10 years.

As I’m writing this I’m thinking of an American guy that was camping right next to us at Rock-A-Field , whom we had a great time with, knowing very well that we won’t ever see him again (plus he probably died of an alcohol overdose)

Some people are simply not meant to stay in your life. They might just be the universe’s way of making you change your way of thinking on something. Sometimes, we’re not given second chances. Be aware that people are capable of wasting your time, time you won’t get back. Realize that life’s too short to spend it with the wrong people. Not everyone’s supposed to follow you on your path.

It’s not about what you spend your time on; it’s who you spend your time with.

Invent yourself,CK

Be picky with who you invest your time in. Wasted time is worse than wasted money. -Unknown

Who are you?

The most difficult thing in life is to know yourself – Thales

We grow everyday but forget that we are growing together, we influence each other more than we know. While we might not even know it, we could change someone’s life. You might have forgotten what you told someone months ago (compliment or insult), but that person could still be thinking about it. In the same way, we are affected by everyone we know and everything we experience. We grow up together and contribute to the personality of others.

We are part of something big, bigger than we could ever imagine. All of our actions, everything we say, everything that crosses our mind, changes the world around us. We are responsible for each other. In a city where everybody knows everybody, it’s important to be aware that we have a great impact on other people. Let me give you an example: A few weeks ago I saw a friend of mine had published his own track. This made me think about who I want to be. Seeing someone else follow his goals, what he loves, was inspiring and I’m pretty sure I wouldn’t have started this blog without him.

In the same way every action and every experience we’ve ever made has made us who we are today. If we grew up in another country, we’d be someone else. If we had chosen other friends in primary school, we’d be someone else. If we had not drunk that Trojka shot on the first Friday of secondary school, we’d be someone else.

This is why we will never stay the same person and change until the day of our death. As long as we live and perceive things, we change, making it impossible to answer the sleep-disturbing, all-subordinating, pathetic question:  Who am I? The question should rather be: Who do I want to be? This way we would be much more aware of our actions and realize that all of our actions have to follow our goals and approach us to the person we want to be.

Do not underestimate the impact you have on others and know that you can change someone’s life, without even knowing it. We are part of something big, we can change it to the better at any moment and should seize that chance.

Invent yourself,CK

You must be the change you wish to see in the world – Mahatma Gandhi

 

 

 

Bring back dates

‘I have to drink until I’m courageous enough to dance with her’
I’m aware that the way dating is depicted in movies is exaggerated but in Luxembourg, there seems to be no romance at all anymore.

You see a beautiful girl or some handsome guy and instead of just going over to her or him  and get to know them, you have to fear that you’ll be ridiculed by her friends for actually having the courage to meet someone in person and not on Facebook or Snapchat (which is really common because it’s so much easier to get to know each other if you have time to think about what you’ll say next. This way you can make them think that you’re really smart and funny when in reality you’re as smart as a stick).

The only other way is to wait for the person you fancy to accept a freebeer invitation on Facebook, where nobody cares who you’re talking to because everybody is drunk.
(Note:  how can you build a relationship if you won’t even remember the first time you talked to each other? I mean it’s not impossible, but there should be other options.)

I might be too harsh on this and you might argue that I’m overacting and that you should just go for it if you want to meet someone but I hope you’re aware that most people discourage others simply by giving them a daunting look (very common feature in Luxembourg).

A little more sympathy and a little more romance would do us good. Think about how your parents met, they couldn’t access social networks and hide behind their screen and got together anyway. Of course it’s awesome to be able to connect with people over internet but when it comes to love, you should grow a pair and talk to them, even if you risk being ridiculed. I mean you want to spend time with them, right? That’s the main desire if you like someone. Then why would you prevent this by writing them on Facebook, Snapchat etc. I know you can arrange to meet them on those networks but to say it in Ted Mosby’s words:

Nothing in this life quite compares to the sweet, terrifying exhilaration of making your move- when you just put it all on the line and go for it. (HIMYM)

I think we should go back to this. Bring back dates.
Invent yourself,CK

The thing about society

Expensive coats, image and gossip. Welcome to Luxembourg city.

That’s all we care about isn’t it?  As long as we wear the clothes everyone else wears and behave the way they do, we don’t have to fear that people will start hating on us. We’re afraid of being left out and not be part of society.

You know what’s the outcome of trying to be the same as everyone else? We forget who we are. Our individuality, if not stimulated, is wiped out. We believe that being the way everybody else is or imitating the so-called ‘famous people’ will make us happy. But it won’t. Disillusion will be the outcome either way. Even if we  convince ourselves that imitation is the key to happiness, it’s not. Of course it is easier to be a part of the group, but eventually we will only be happy if we choose to be who we are, even if this means that we have to separate ourselves from the group.

This insecurity is the main reason for gossip. Talking behind people’s back is a really common thing in Luxembourg. We are so used to it that we have come to accept it,  we’ve become the prey of an addicting pastime. In the 5 last years, I’ve seen quite a few friendships and relationships being destroyed by rumors. The downside of living in such a small country is that everyone knows everyone and can tell you lots about them  without even knowing them personally.

We are so afraid of being different to the mass that we condemn everybody who differs from us. We don’t support individuality. Because this might mean that other people would follow, it’d become a trend and we’d have to change our attitude. We start rumors and do everything to make this person feel bad, to make them get back into their place, where they belong and do not attract more attention than we do.

Gossiping can often be an act of jealousy. You don’t like someone? Don’t talk about them. You shouldn’t worry about the life of someone who is not part of your life, should you? And gossiping about friends is just sad. Gossiping does not make you a better person.

I’m not saying that I’ve never talked behind people’s back and I’m not trying to put myself on top of anybody, I’m just trying to describe the way I have experienced our society so far. Some people are so desperate to be recognized but instead of doing something of any worth, they try to make themselves look better by pulling others down. But this can’t be the path to a healthy lifestyle. Be true to yourself and

Invent yourself, CK


 

The only time people dislike gossip is when you gossip about them – Will Rogers