the idea of being better keeps me awake

26 June, 2020

I wrote a few weeks ago (in this post) about how I'm desperately trying to be present and in a state of self awareness. I've felt stuck and like I can't really move forward through the haze and in a sense I'm trying to take a little step towards being more of my best self. Someday when I am that person I think I'll be in a better place mentally, physically, socially, psychologically, all of it.

This idea of my best self is really what drives me as a person and I'm still figuring out which pieces of my life right now, the things that I like and do, are going to stick around and prove to be core aspects of myself as a person. I think I have a hard time really accepting and giving my all to things like art, writing, music, etc., because I'm afraid they won't be in my life forever and therefore I shouldn't commit to them. I know I've been writing songs since I was a child but what if it is still just a phase? What if I'm distancing myself from things now so I have nothing to let go of later? Maybe I'm being a little too self aware. What I do know  is that I spend a lot of time consuming those same hobbies (art, music, film, books, etc.) and that inspires a large part of who I think I want to be in 10, 20, or 30 years, so maybe my whole idea of self is skewed. Maybe people are different than what I think they are.

Whenever I think about the person I want to be or the person that I am working towards becoming, my mind always goes back to characters from movies or books. I want to be my full snarky, sarcastic, quick-witted, bright-eyed self that I know I am deep down and that circumstances have kept locked away. I've said before that I am consciously not the person I want to be. It's a defense mechanism- putting up this many walls. 

Something about being myself, being the best version of myself in a situation that is not the best possible situation really terrifies me and I slip into default mode or the version of myself I've created to deal with this harsh world. I keep to myself, I don't smile often, I don't say what I'm thinking out loud, I don't initiate conversation, I don't ask for what I want, and I don't take risks. I really can't imagine, in my current state of life where I get burnt out every other week, where I can't keep to a routine or make the decisions that I want to or find a meaningful career or love my body, I can't imagine this person ever even meeting my dream self because they aren't compatible. Does that make sense? My best self exists in a better life so since I'm existing in a state that is suboptimal: I am not making any change.

So my best self, if they're really out there, is buried deep down. I compare them to everything I've seen in the movies. Shiny, happy people holding hands. People who are emotionally equipped to handle life's ups and downs without crying. People with great skin and clothes that fit. People who can be authentic in relationships without terror and are honest and real. TV characters who are competent and confident at their jobs because they made the leap when they were my age and never looked back. Book characters who are able to look at their own lives from the outside and dive head first. People who aren't afraid to jump. 

When I compare my best self to fictional people with traits that inspire me (i.e. this post), they measure up. They're unafraid to admit that they're good enough and when I compare myself to them I know that I'm not- and that scares me too. I'm scared I'll never get there, I'm scared I'll never jump.

So when I say that fictional people know the most about life, I mean that almost everything I know about life I've learned from fictional people. I've built so many aspects of my personality or perceived personality around movies or books that are just unrealistic, which is why I think I feel so many of the things that I do. All the movies that I've seen where people are coming of age or letting go or finding themselves, they are all just small slices of what life really is and I keep trying to remind myself that life goes on. You can't fit everything in 120 minutes or 300 pages and that is why I feel so lost, maybe. The most unrealistic part about fiction is that you know when you're in the beginning, middle, and end.

Some of the things I do are important. Some of the things I do are meaningful. Sometimes I think I can gather enough positivity to imagine a future where I am thriving and that possibility is what keeps me going. I just don't know how to get there.


Join the conversation!

  1. What a wonderful message. Thank you for this. <3

    1. Thank you, I'm glad you liked it! ♡

  2. Ah I compare myself to fictional characters all the time too, even though I know it's impossible to be them and that the movies are never like real life. What I've discovered though is that we can't be too defining. If we try to become something we are limiting ourselves. Instead we should just let life take its course, and we will develop naturally with it, and become so much more than the two-dimensional person on a screen - we are multifaceted human beings. We don't need to be defined Hope you get out of your spiral soon <3


    1. It's nice that you can relate and you're right that fictional characters seem like such a good idea until you focus on them too much. I'll try to think like that, thank you! ♡

  3. i don't see myself in characters but i would like to be more like some characters ive seen before.

    im starting to accepting who i am NOW maybe that is my true character, always growing and getting out of my shell, it's okay. i have to accept her lol

    1. I think in some ways we all want to be more like characters until we realize that it's a lot of work to try and be some one else. I'm glad you feel like you're coming into yourself! ♡


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