All posts by nyxexists

About nyxexists

I am an empiricist who dabbles in politics, languages, travel, cultural studies, and business. I am a damn good saleswoman, and I enjoy freedom and individuality. I believe in education, humor, and romance. I think therefore I am Nyx. Nyx exists.

Starting Over

Life as I knew it a year ago seems so far away. The world around me continues to change and I keep finding new paths to take. I could have never imagined where I would be today in my recovery, career, or social life. I feel like I am sprouting new wings of glory right now. Something inside of me that has been stuck under the muck in my soul is starting to glow again. It hasn’t been an easy job to get to this point, but I am so grateful for what I have right now.

 

Friday I had to call in sick to work, which was fine, but my old me felt guilt. New me felt empowered and strong. I have an upper respiratory infection that really took a toll on me last Thursday, so after going to a clinic and getting a doctor’s note, I called my supervisor to let him know I wouldn’t be coming in. I needed rest, fluids, and meds to feel better, so that’s exactly what I did all day. 

 

My boyfriend came over that night to stay with me, and we spent Saturday and Sunday together. I can’t begin to express how grateful I am to have him in my life today. A year ago, I was so convinced that I was doomed to never being loved or even liked by another human being. I felt so removed from normalcy with other people, my anxiety and depression were at their peak, and I knew I just couldn’t do it anymore. Now, I am cherished and loved to the moon and back by an amazing guy. I am learning to truly love someone else while I learn to really know and love myself. God has blessed me to say the least.

In a few weeks, we will be moving into his parent’s home to live together for the next year. His parents are leaving the state, and they trust us to watch over their home while they finish the basement. It is a gorgeous home that will give us an opportunity to learn to live together without the added stress of rent. As much as I would like to move closer to my new job, I realize how fortunate we are to have this offering on the table. I am excited to move in with him, as it will be a major step in our relationship. I feel like I am growing when I am with him, so I can’t even imagine where we will be in a year from now!

 

This week also marks my first week going back to school. I decided to take advantage of my tuition remission ASAP. I really hope that I have made the right decision, but I won’t know until I try! I’ve decided to go back to study computer science. I will do the B.S./M.S. track, God willing. I was able to download/run VMware Fusion on my Mac to get Windows (for C++) and I bought my book for this semester. I feel ready to give this a go! I always think about “what if I had gone into a STEM field,” and now I have the perfect opportunity to go back and do it, so that’s the plan. I realize that the job field will be extremely good when I graduate as a woman in C.S. I am excited to report back on how my first semester goes. If it turns out to be too much work, I can either drop a class or the program, and I won’t have a lost anything but time. I know I just need to have an action plan for my health and wellness, so that I have balance in my life. 

Overall, life is going well right now. There are always somethings lingering in the peripheral (like family) that I am challenged to overcome, but I know with time I will. Like anything else, as long as I am open, honest, and willing, things fall into place exactly how they were meant to. 

With that, I am going to bed. Peace & Love! 

4 scientific studies on how meditation can affect your heart, brain and creativity

TED Blog

Many people have tried to sell me on the idea of meditating. Sometimes I try it, and have an incredible, refreshing experience. But usually, as I close my eyes and focus on my breathing, while I know that I’m supposed to be letting all thoughts go, more and more fly through my mind. Soon I have a laundry-list of “to-dos” in my head … and then my legs fall asleep. It’s all downhill from there.

Today’s TED Talk, however, might actually convince me to give meditation another shot.

“We live in an incredibly busy world. Our pace of life is often frantic, our minds are always busy, and we’re always doing something,” says Andy Puddicombe at the TEDSalon London Fall 2012. “The sad fact is that we’re so distracted that we are no longer present in the world in which we live. We miss out on the things…

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12 Things That Show You Who You Really Are

Thought Catalog

1. What your ugly looks like.

There are few times in our lives we are uglier than fresh after heartbreak, so that’s a good place to start. We’re reeling and hysterical and compromising every conversation with the news of our failed romance. We are selfish and pathetic and quite possibly the worst version of ourselves. Watch yourself when you’re at your ugliest. Understanding who you are isn’t all about noting all of your positive qualities, although that is important too. You have to understand yourself as a whole person, the good, the bad, the ugly. 

2. What you do when you’re upset.

Do you quietly calm yourself without telling anybody? Do you take it out on other people? Do you act out physically or violently? These are all signs of what’s brewing underneath your surface, or more so, your grasp on self control.

3. How you treat others who can…

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Serenity

Lately I have been facing some issues with myself. A sense of hopelessness and despair swept over me Monday as I drove to work. The song Price Tag by Jessie J came on the radio, and it struck a chord inside of me. I started thinking about where I would be in the next ten years with financial success, but without any positive impact on society. I blew an opportunity to work with the government in the field I am majoring in, and that is really hard to accept. It also is unsettling to think about the person I was then and the person that I am right now. I feel like I have grown immensely, yet if I am to be honest with myself and others, my chances are virtually nonexistent for securing that same position. I can see now that it is better that I didn’t get it at the time than if I had. I really wasn’t fit for it then. Now, though, I feel like I would be so much more suitable in the position, but I locked myself out because of my own bad choices. That hurts.

Now as I set on a mission to be practical and to make a decent living doing something that is rewarding in a completely different sense, I feel empty. Like what is the point? What will money buy my soul? My track in life has shifted significantly, and I have to get used to it or be miserable. I am a black or white thinker, and if I can’t have exactly what I envisioned for myself, I feel like I have nothing.

What really helped me today was reading a daily meditation that centered on facing this issue and really feeling it. I sat for a few minutes on my toilet and as I thought about it all, I burst into tears. How could I have been so stupid? What was wrong with me? Where am I going now? Will anything ever make me happy? All of these questions flooded my mind and I really felt the sadness and fear that had welled up inside of me come out. I got down on my knees and said a prayer. After that, I actually felt like a lot of that burden had been lifted from my shoulders. I felt lighter and found a sense of clarity. That seemed to have worked for me somehow.

These kinds of things in life are inexplicable. It was a miracle that the thoughts really stopped after I asked for help from the universe…my higher power. I get so stuck in my idea of what is best for me and what I MUST do to be happy that I lose out on enjoying the here and now. I worked from home today because we got 6″ of snow, and I was able to focus and ground myself into my work. I guess part of me is always searching for something, but I pray that will slow down. I really hope that I will learn to someday be truly content with where I’m at. Sometimes I crave the highs and lows of life so much that I actually create them out of seemingly nothing. Others around me do their best to console me, but until I am able to be honest with myself about a situation and accept it for what it is, I will not find serenity in my life. That is what it comes back to.

Juggle It All

So this is the third blog post that I will have written today. My life went from boring as can be to busy as a bee in the matter of a few weeks. I got into work early today and had the office to myself. It was nice to turn up my music and start my daily grind. I made some decent headway into the project. I am consciously slowing myself down and taking things piece by piece, which is something I have to learn in all areas of my life. I tend to take on much more than I can actually handle, and it is cause a lot of stress and unhappiness. I think I am making a resolution or goal for myself to limit myself and stop overcommitting. It is really hard for me to say no to good opportunities. It’s like that Yes Man movie with Jim Carrey where he is only able to answer yes to questions. Good things really do start happening when we open ourselves up to the universe, but it can be overwhelming to manage everything.

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This weekend, it will be crucial for me to organize and strategize my plan of action. I have two volunteer internships that are an per-event basis, a new part-time job, a work study job, 12 credit hours of school, recovery, relationships and leisure. I enjoy all of these things in my life that I am trying so hard to balance, but I know I could trim up  my schedule a bit (or a lot). I like to stay busy, but I think I fear losing out on things. It tends to be one of my character defects that I overwhelm myself to please others and to feed my fear of failure. I don’t want to fill that hole up more than it needs, so I know I need to loosen up and take some risks. Risks that involve not committing myself to new opportunities…risking on losing out. If it were a perfect world, I would just have my career, some volunteer positions, recovery, family, relationships and leisure (emphasis on this)…or a clone who could double my efforts, but it isn’t a perfect world and there is only one of me. It is exciting to feel like I am moving forward.

The founder/CEO and I had a lunch date today so that he could “download” all of his ideas for the project onto my mind. He is an interesting dude, and I enjoy hearing his vision, but sometimes even he can get too abstract and difficult for me to follow. I’m usually that person, but seeing it in the person across the table from me was a different experience. I realized that it’s great to be intelligent and have innovative ideas, but too many start to become unmanageable. Part of my job will be managing his ideas, clients and plans. That seems like a big job, and I honestly feel that he could do those things for himself. It seems insulting for me to take care of his personal responsibilities instead of directing my talents towards more productive endeavors. I am at an entry level position, but I am an A-type with a strong personality and a big thinker. I guess I just want to keep my side of the street clean, which makes it frustrating to have to worry about cleaning up his side.

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I was very mindful today at work. I am practicing integrating the tools I get from my meditations into my everyday tasks, and I find that it does center my focus and ground me in the present moment. I check in with myself and assess what my overall mood is at that moment. The first step is being aware, so I feel good that I am working on that. I know it will take a lot of practice to become fully mindful, but I am making progress as I continue along my Headspace journey. I have to use the tools that I am already equipped with, and ultimately I have to put my trust and faith in my higher power. So far it is working, but I would like to start advocating for myself more.

Dress for Success

Another day at my new job, and my enthusiasm has not wavered. In fact, it is on the incline, which does make my brain work harder. I decided to dress my jeans up today with a tan rock tank with fringe and an eagle, a black suit jacket and black cowboy boots. I really enjoy adding one sophisticated, clean cut piece to my outfit. I feel that it gives a laid back but professional look that is what I want to convey. I’m here to rock and roll.

This morning, I experienced my first team meeting, which happened around a white board and floor rug in the middle of the office. Funny it felt like reading time in elementary school, which is awesome. I haven’t had one of those in awhile…The founder and another employee returned today from a trip to Las Vegas for a social media conference, so nearly everyone was present.  We went around and explained what we accomplished, what we are working on and what we need to do. I already feel like I am making a contribution. I pitched an idea for a collaborative “future artifact” for our upcoming event, and it was taken really well. I am so pleased to take over this project because it is something that I truly believe in, and I have so many ideas. In fact, last night I tossed and turned all night with ideas. I actually had a dream that I was giving a lesson in a large auditorium, and I was very confident and comfortable. Not sure what that means, but I think it is a positive message. I do, however, need to get a good night’s sleep, so I picked up a bottle of melatonin at the grocery store on my way home.

To make my desk more homey, I brought an aloe plant that has been hiding in my dark, cave-like room, so now it will get lots of nice sunshine; a coaster, paper organizer, some folders and other things. I brought everything in my old grocery bag from Switzerland. It is huge and has the Swiss flag on both sides. No one will ever know that it came from the cheap-o grocery store. One other employee showed me pictures on his phone of the new office that is in the works right now, and it is pretty sweet. I will have my own personal office instead of being smack dab in the middle of everyone. If all goes well, I think that would be an awesome working environment. We’re also moving to a much classier district in the city, and it is walking distance from many of my favorite restaurants including an authentic French creperie and a delicious chopped salad bistro. I am really looking forward to that, but I know that I need to focus on what is right in front of me and do the next right thing. Today, I focused on integrating mindfulness in at the office and it was a challenge. I will have to keep working on that, and hopefully I will improve slowly but surely.

Today is day four of no coffee, and it has been a difficult transition. It could also be due to my lack of sleep lately, but I am sticking to it. I am only drinking Emergen-c and orange juice (pre-workout), water and tea. My recovery week in Insanity is going well, and my coworkers and I have been able to talk about exercise and diet a bit… I plan to make a post later of “What not to do as a new hire,” so stay tuned for that.

Your Year in Financial Milestones [Infographic]

I sure do love a great infographic…

The TurboTax Blog

A lot of big life changes can happen in a year – whether you’re looking for a new job, got married, or bought your first home. Let’s take a look at how each of these big milestones can affect our financial situation and what can it mean to your taxes come April 15th. In any case, taxes are just a story of your year and no one is better telling that story and doing your taxes than you.

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Follow Your Heart and Play Your Part

Today was my first day at my new job at a local branding agency. I am a marketing associate, and this marks a new chapter in my life. My commute only took about 30 minutes this morning. I was very energized after my morning Insanity workout. Thankfully I am in my recovery week, so this schedule transition is smoother . Things seem to balance themselves out naturally.

I couldn’t help but think on the way to work this morning as all the cars whipped past me that I’m actually stepping into the “real world,” and I am OK with that. Strangely, I feel at ease. My office is located inside of a renovated barn, and we all work on the second floor. It is flooded with natural light, and I plan to bring my aloe plant with me Wednesday. I’ve been finding all sorts of fun gizmos and gadgets at home to bring in with me… a purple table lamp, a light up gaming keyboard… needless to say I feel very comfortable.

My office is also filled with other young adult women like myself. They are all very talented at what they do, and I have a feeling that we will grow on each other. We had some awkward moments, but I am the “new girl” for now. I have to be the best that I can be with what I have right now. I am not forcing or controlling what happens outside of me, but I am focusing on generating energy and control over what I let happen inside of me. It is both daunting and exhilarating.

The day started off slow, but that was much needed. I didn’t feel rushed or pushed to get anything done. I  acquainted myself with the office and surfed the internet looking for inspiration. I read over the PR plan for the project that I will be leading, and wrapped my brain around the big ideas  I will bring to life.

I realize that the universe has a purpose for me, and I am letting it happen freely. For so long, I thought I had my entire life figured out and I pushed and pulled tirelessly to get it to fit into that mould. I am finally at peace in just being me.

The end of my day snuck up on me as I was just starting to develop my first marketing plan.  To succeed is to accept life on life’s terms, and that is what I am doing. I believe that having ownership over my work and having the freedom to make choices makes this job  fun. It doesn’t feel like work once I get started. I feel like I am doing what I love.

I feel very fortunate to have this opportunity before me. Transitions in life and rites of passage aren’t easy, but they are worth it if we put in the effort. I believe we all share a common human experience. Whether you are just starting college, trying a  fitness program, moving to a new city, or falling in love, I hope that you follow your heart and play your part.

Confluence

While working on homework last night, I became very distracted by my younger sister and mom arguing upstairs. As I sat on my laptop clicking through emails and writing to-do lists on my legal pad, I had to use every fiber in my being not to run upstairs and shut them up. I did not even know what their disagreement was over, but I did not like the way that my sister was yelling and treating our mom, and I did not like that my mom was taking it. I love the convenience of living at home, but sometimes it can be really stressful. I have a tendency to own the feelings and actions of my mom and sister, and that gets me into trouble. This time, I had to bear it the best that I could.

I quickly texted my life coach, Jen, about what was going on, and waited for a reply.  I sent her three long paragraphs detailing the crazy  family drama, and she replied an hour later stating, “Ignore it.” Well, that was what I had done…it was all that I could do to be somewhat sensible, but inside I was fuming. I replied to her text with a “Thanks…”, which could have been interpreted numerous ways. By this point I was reading a textbook in bed, and I let my phone drop into the mass of blankets and pillows around me hoping that it would be lost forever. I felt hurt. I felt like she didn’t care, but more than anything I was confused. My expectations to get a warm and fuzzy message to simply affirm my beliefs was not received, and I felt let down. I went back to my book and let the thoughts fade away with every passing tick-tock on my wall clock. I strongly dislike that helpless feeling I get in my relationships when I feel myself forming resentments.

Later that night, I talked to someone about my mom and sister, and I decided to bring up my frustration with Jen and I’s relationship. It did not occur to me that I was not helpless and there was something that I needed to do: communicate my frustrations. What a novel idea!  I just expected her to understand me and how I felt without giving her any insight or feedback on my personal experience. I rushed home and sent her a strong, heartfelt message. It was nerve wracking, but it had to be done. She replied back with compassion, kindness, and understanding. My stomach knot released, and my heart lightened. All of the build up began to escape with my out breaths. We made plans to get together at the end of the week to catch up.

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I always love experiencing points of confluence in my life between separate entities. As I previously mentioned, I am reading Lean In by Sheryl Sandberg, COO at Facebook. Before bed and after telling Jen goodnight, I read the chapter “Seek and Speak Your Truth.” Having mentors, bosses, friends, and family teaches us the most important thing in relationships is good communication. When I put my feelings out on the table, as hard is that may be, problems get solved. Too often, we stifle these gut feelings, and things worsen quickly. Part of being mindful is getting in touch with not only my mind, but also my physical sensations. I believe that many of my emotional qualities manifest into my physical being, so doing body scans and being aware of my own body allows me to grow and improve. It is painful at times, and I have fears that people will not like me or my feelings are unimportant, but I am finally seeing how untrue that is.