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An Open Letter To Infatuation

An Open Letter To Infatuation

Hello, infatuation, my old friend.

I felt too comfortable with you. Like a ridiculously soft hoodie and warm mocha on another bland, tedious winter’s day. I knew each and every nook and cranny of yours.

Beneath your sparkling eyes and smothering smirk, I was fully aware of every single game you’d lead me to play. And, fully aware of the preceding side effects, I gave you permission to demolish my walls, one by one. You crumbled them right in front of my eyes. It’s a predictable ritual; a non-programmable state of mind.

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After countless attempts to rid myself of you, none worked. “Time heals everything,” or so I was told. Your undeniable charm hiding your true intentions caught me starry-eyed and vulnerable. You’d gently caress me in my weakest moments and darkest nights. When the slightest peek of sunshine emerged, I was then greeted with a strike on the face followed by a knowing grin.

Consumed by the passion inside your penetrating gaze, I was reminded of the times you’d whisper words of affirmation into my ear. Your words dripped off of your lips like melted butter; your kisses as sweet as honey.

Oh, my melodramatic self saw all of those crimson red flags in the plain. The escape was easy; all I had to do was to bid you a firm farewell. Choosing otherwise, I threw consciousness and logic out the window without a single glance back.

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You were more powerful than any addiction encountered in the past. There was no over-the-counter medicine to combat the butterflies and electric tension. We were like moth to flame: always close, yet never close enough. Had I gone too close, the story would be no more. From my first thought of each waking moment to the final thought before dozing off into a slumber, you were there.

Sometimes, I wondered if you had ever thought of me. I would then recall how you never remembered my birthday without the aid of social media. I would remember how you’d disappear for weeks without notice. I was so accustomed to living on the edge; hanging by a thread.

The days felt like weeks, weeks felt like months, but I would always be awaiting your response. And the next one. And the next one. It was a routine that thrived on spontaneity, ironic in its existence, illogical in its consistency.

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Darling, thank you for blinding me. Thank you for opening imaginary doors that directed to new doors of opportunity. But most of all, thank you for helping me realize my self-worth. Without being pushed down to what could only be described as a prison of lingering uncertainty and fear, I would never be aware of how strong I really was. I said goodbye, and the results were ethereal.

I found time again. Energy, again. Even dignity, again.

Suddenly, I could walk through that little path in the forest without your scent looming. I could listen to that musical piece without envisioning what we could be. I could write without your name etched in the back of my mind.

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Infatuation. You’ve been quite the handful, being that grey area between the fiery sparks of romance and peaceful waters of friendship. Throughout this journey, I finally realized that you only have enough control over me as I’d allow you to. All that insomnia and over-contemplation has led me to who I am today. And of course, I don’t regret all the bad poetry I wrote.

It’s been a while since we’ve last had a chat. Perhaps I can take you out to coffee sometime to talk about someone else I’ve met.

With gratitude,

Your longtime friend

Featured photo credit: VividScreen via splendidwallpaper.com

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Lily Yuan

Full-Time Student

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Last Updated on August 16, 2018

10 Ways To Step Out Of Your Comfort Zone And Enjoy Taking Risks

10 Ways To Step Out Of Your Comfort Zone And Enjoy Taking Risks

The ability to take risks by stepping outside your comfort zone is the primary way by which we grow. But we are often afraid to take that first step.

In truth, comfort zones are not really about comfort, they are about fear. Break the chains of fear to get outside. Once you do, you will learn to enjoy the process of taking risks and growing in the process.

Here are 10 ways to help you step out of your comfort zone and get closer to success:

1. Become aware of what’s outside of your comfort zone

What are the things that you believe are worth doing but are afraid of doing yourself because of the potential for disappointment or failure?

Draw a circle and write those things down outside the circle. This process will not only allow you to clearly identify your discomforts, but your comforts. Write identified comforts inside the circle.

2. Become clear about what you are aiming to overcome

Take the list of discomforts and go deeper. Remember, the primary emotion you are trying to overcome is fear.

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How does this fear apply uniquely to each situation? Be very specific.

Are you afraid of walking up to people and introducing yourself in social situations? Why? Is it because you are insecure about the sound of your voice? Are you insecure about your looks?

Or, are you afraid of being ignored?

3. Get comfortable with discomfort

One way to get outside of your comfort zone is to literally expand it. Make it a goal to avoid running away from discomfort.

Let’s stay with the theme of meeting people in social settings. If you start feeling a little panicked when talking to someone you’ve just met, try to stay with it a little longer than you normally would before retreating to comfort. If you stay long enough and practice often enough, it will start to become less uncomfortable.

4. See failure as a teacher

Many of us are so afraid of failure that we would rather do nothing than take a shot at our dreams.

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Begin to treat failure as a teacher. What did you learn from the experience? How can you take that lesson to your next adventure to increase your chance of success?

Many highly successful people failed plenty of times before they succeeded. Here’re some examples:

10 Famous Failures to Success Stories That Will Inspire You to Carry On

5. Take baby steps

Don’t try to jump outside your comfort zone, you will likely become overwhelmed and jump right back in.

Take small steps toward the fear you are trying to overcome. If you want to do public speaking, start by taking every opportunity to speak to small groups of people. You can even practice with family and friends.

Take a look at this article on how you can start taking baby steps:

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The Number One Secret to Life Success: Baby Steps

6. Hang out with risk takers

There is no substitute for this step. If you want to become better at something, you must start hanging out with the people who are doing what you want to do and start emulating them. (Here’re 8 Reasons Why Risk Takers Are More Likely To Be Successful).

Almost inevitably, their influence will start have an effect on your behavior.

7. Be honest with yourself when you are trying to make excuses

Don’t say “Oh, I just don’t have the time for this right now.” Instead, be honest and say “I am afraid to do this.”

Don’t make excuses, just be honest. You will be in a better place to confront what is truly bothering you and increase your chance of moving forward.

8. Identify how stepping out will benefit you

What will the ability to engage in public speaking do for your personal and professional growth? Keep these potential benefits in mind as motivations to push through fear.

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9. Don’t take yourself too seriously

Learn to laugh at yourself when you make mistakes. Risk taking will inevitably involve failure and setbacks that will sometimes make you look foolish to others. Be happy to roll with the punches when others poke fun.

If you aren’t convinced yet, check out these 6 Reasons Not to Take Life So Seriously.

10. Focus on the fun

Enjoy the process of stepping outside your safe boundaries. Enjoy the fun of discovering things about yourself that you may not have been aware of previously.

Featured photo credit: Unsplash via unsplash.com

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