Finding Deeper Meaning

Advice + Inspiration, Uncategorized

Like many who come into college, I started my academic career by taking “generals”. These are classes like sociology 1001, biology 1000, and intro to psychology.

In these courses, we skim the various topics that pertain to the overall subjects- like in biology we briefly went over definitions of evolution, genetics, and cell functions. Each topic covered spanned about two weeks long. We took an exam, forgot about what we learned, and then moved onto the next subject.

While these classes gave us a chance to explore the wide range of studies available to us, they lacked an in-depth understanding of why the lessons were meaningful and didn’t give us the ability to have long conversations about what we had learned.

It’s not until 3000-level subjects when we are able to completely unpack and learn deeply a certain aspect of an overarching subject. We take more time focusing on each lesson and usually have one big project that we work on the entire semester.

What does this have to do with deeper meaning?

Have you ever gone to a social gathering and realized you are engaging in surface level conversations with people?

These conversations sound like tape recordings “how are you?” “how’s work?” “what’s new?”

After a while, these conversations drain our energy. Why is that?

We crave connection and meaning.

Social gatherings honestly suck until you get into those unique conversations that you don’t engage with in your everyday life. They excite us and make us feel like we are really getting to know the person we are talking with.

These conversations usually occur once we get more comfortable and situated in an environment.

If you are like me, you want to give everyone attention at an event. You want to say hi to everyone, but sometimes engaging with just a few people allows for more memorable conversations plus once you have a really good conversation it makes it easier to engage in more.

Not only do I enjoy depth in social settings, but I find when I work on just one or two projects during the day, I feel much more satisfied. Focusing on finishing a book or an art project instead of doing small bits of everything is much more rewarding. Trying to pack too much in our day makes for a chaotic life.

So what I’m really trying to say is that engaging with more in-depth content is so much more interesting and fulfilling. When my day has at least one deep interaction or lesson, I feel peaceful and whole. When my days are full of lots of superficial content, I feel like something is missing. In some ways, this deeper meaning is achieved by simplicity. Less can be more.

What do you think?

Why You Need to Move in Order to Grow

Uncategorized

I know- the title is kind of a bold statement.

I believe in it fully.

Here’s why-

Have you ever been back in a place where people only see you as the old you?

The people in this certain place expect old reactions from you and see you in a way that is no longer a present version of who you are. Often times you feel as though you have to resort to old behaviors to satisfy the relationship even though you know you’ve grown from this stage in your life.

No matter how differently you act or what topics you are now interested in, they choose to see you as the person you used to be.

You need to move.

I’m sure you’ve heard this before but you can’t move forward if you keep re-reading the same chapter of a book.

There is no way you can grow in a place that refuses to see you as a book that’s still being written instead of a chapter that is to be re-read.

If someone isn’t willing to see you for the growing version of yourself, they’re only stopping you from reaching that next step in your life.

What do I mean by “moving”?

I think you can move in a number of ways. It all depends on what kind of “move” you think is necessary in order for you to grow and be who you truly are. Here are a few examples-

Live somewhere new

Actually move to a new place! Pick a location on the map and go there. Start completely new. A new house, new job, a new climate.

Sounds kind of drastic, right?

I want to tell you a story. I had a friend who traveled and lived in Europe for a year to work. While there, we would FaceTime occasionally and she told me how distance from our hometown made her feel like a new person. She had new visions for her future, felt she had new purpose, and saw life through a whole new lens. I could see it too. She even explained to me how she felt as though the people in our hometown were stuck having the same conversations that she didn’t want to be a part of anymore. When her job ended and she came back home, she went back to old perspectives and behaviors. She knew better but because of the environment she was put back in, it was hard to change and continue growing there.

So please just move!

If not physically moving your location you can also

– move away from certain types of people

– move jobs

– move away from certain places that don’t benefit you anymore

It can be hard to do these things especially when it’s all you know, but you are not doing any of these people or places any favors by pretending to fit in there.

Move where you need to move.

When a Stranger is your Soulmate

Uncategorized

Have you ever met someone who just changes your perspective on life?

You talk to them and instantly you feel your whole body fill up with energy and inspiration. Every part of your conversation with this person feels spiritual in a sense.

Have I known this person my whole life?

These encounters happen to me often. When I travel, I tend to meet these types of people.

How wild is it that you can have a deeper conversation with someone you’ve known for less than an hour than with someone you’ve known for years?

Have I met this person in another life? I know we are here at the same time for a reason. 

When these conversations come to an end, I tend to think to myself: I’ve made a new life-long friend. How are we going to keep in contact? What will our relationship develop into going forward?

Often times- nowhere. A week later and I still think about this person and our conversation.

Only recently have I realized this: Not every person you meet needs to be your life-long friend. Maybe in essence, but sometimes these one-time encounters are all they are meant to be in your life.

This has been hard for me to swallow, but it is also a beautiful realization.

How wonderful is it that life sprinkles random encounters that have the power to change our lives?

 

 

Why You Need to Do More Story-Telling

Advice + Inspiration, Uncategorized

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Okay funny story- are you ready?

I used to work at an elementary school- and boy if you don’t know what roasting is you will learn a thing or two while working there- okay that’s besides the point.

So, do you remember being in elementary school and always trying to act cooler or more mature than you were? Yes you do- don’t lie.

Anyways, in the classroom we had a book shelf filled with books that I never once saw a kid touch. Very sad, I know. One day, I decided to pull out a few of my childhood favorites and read them out loud. I just sat at a table by myself and began. No fair -warning- nothing.

At first, the kids were all snickering. “Why is ms. Coco just reading out loud randomly?” They started making jokes about the books, but then something funny happened.

Within five minutes of me reading, half of the classroom was sitting by me. They began to truly listen. No jokes- just engaged fourth and fifth graders. While the other half wasn’t gathered around, they were still listening as well and would occasionally run over to look at some pages as I told the stories.

Funny right? I think so at least. It’s because we all love a good story.

What teachers did you like the best? The ones that made connections through story-telling or the ones who just read off the bullet points and left you wondering “what’s the point”? I think it’s a pretty easy question to answer, right?

Story-telling draws people in! That’s why we love movies, hearing other people’s experiences, etc. It connects us to one another.

They also help us remember things better. I am much more likely to remember new information if it’s told in story form versus just having to memorize words and definitions.

Tell more stories! It makes people want to listen more and it makes it easier to connect with others.

Thanks for coming to my Ted Talk LOL.

And as always, thanks for reading!

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Aesthetically Pleasing Ice Cream Places

Food + Travel, Uncategorized

The Loop, CA

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This place is so much fun. What’s better than churros and ice cream? Churros in ice cream. They have so many options to choose from and omg I wish they had these in Minnesota.

Waffle Bar, MN

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I need this right now. Waffles and ice cream are another iconic combination. This place is super fun and they have a wall where you can post instagram photos. They also have a cotton candy machine? Pretty cool.

Minnesota Nicecream, MN

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I waited in line for this ice cream for like 45 minutes. Luckily, there was a pug in a backpack in front of me which made it more enjoyable. The ice cream looks better than it tastes, but would definitely get it again.

So, have you been to any of these places?

If not, treat yo-self!

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