Random Thought of the Day: The Doppelgänger Effect

Although the concept of the doppelgänger usually refers to more of the physical attributes of a person, I’ve been thinking a lot about the personalities we come across or invite into our lives. I met someone recently who reminded me a lot of a person from my past. It wasn’t so much the physical similarities but the personality quirks of this person that are similar to a friend from a different lifetime.

It got me thinking about the people that come in to our lives. No matter how much I grow or change, I seem to be drawn to certain personalities. Sometimes, their presence in my life is fleeting – maybe a conversation that lasts as long as it takes for me to drink a pint of beer at the bar. A passing conversation. A person who won’t be a lasting part of my life but that short conversation can awaken a feeling, thought, or untie a knot that’s been tangled up in my mind.

This is why, even as an introvert, I try to make an effort to talk to strangers when the time is right. The other night, I was sitting at the bar and one of the girls ordering a drink was asking for a recommendation. I spoke up with my thoughts and next thing you know, we were talking about road trips for an hour.

Another conversation led me to meet a couple who had just come back from a trip to China and they were both creatives, so we ended up talking about art and writing for two hours on a random Saturday night.

I walk away from most of these conversations inspired.

People can surprise you. Yes, that can be a negative surprise too, but the beauty of these fleeting conversations is the ability to walk away. If you’re feeling more drained than inspired, walk away.

If you meet someone who has the same kind of spark of a friend from the past, embrace it. Maybe it’ll remind you of good memories. Maybe it’ll encourage you to finally send that email you’ve been wanting to send. Maybe it will remind you that there’s a reason the past is the past and you should delete that email that’s been sitting in your outbox and move on.

The world is constantly talking to us but we hardly listen. Once in a while, it takes the Doppelgänger Effect to make us stop and pay attention, even if it’s just for the duration of a short conversation.

It’s easy for me to get lost in my own head, until a conversation with a stranger sparks a thought, debate, or clue to help me find my way back to the right path.

When was the last time you paused long enough to listen to the world around you?

I Put Pen to Paper – And This Is What Came Out

I couple of weeks ago, I grabbed my notebook and pen, went to a coffee shop and sat down to write. This is one of the things that came out. So here is my stream of consciousness, unedited. It’s not perfect but there it is.

****

Picture this: There are no pictures. Her walls stand as blank as her clean slate. No smudges. Not a single mark.

Blank.This is your life. You want it to be different? Stop running in place. Stop letting your missteps and people’s misconceptions of you define who you are

Pristine.

Untouched.

Don’t we all want that sometimes? The opportunity to start fresh – to go where nobody knows your name. A place where you’re the only one who even has the tiniest knowledge of your past. You don’t get to start over without your memories. The past comes with you but it’s up to you how you shape your future. Look at that blank slate. There is no comfort zone defined for you. No more familiarity. You take your past – the memories, the heartbreaks and your tainted heart and start over. This is day one. When you cross paths with the next new person in your life, what do you want their first impression to be? Because this is it.

Not to put pressure on your anything, kiddo. But this is what you wanted.

What will you do with the rest of your life?

You have the answer? Good.

I have a secret for you. Are you ready?

You don’t have to go to a place where nobody knows your name to redefine your future. This is your life. You want it to be different? Stop running in place. Stop letting your missteps and people’s misconceptions of you define who you are.

You define who you are. And guess what? It’s a lot less scary than you think. You get one life but you have more than one chance to make it what you want.

So, go. Live. Define and redefine.

Just do me a favor.

Stay true to you. Because there are no blank slates for that.

The rest can always be redefined.

Stay true to you. Because there are no blank slates for that

 

Ten on Tuesday: Because.

Ten on Tuesday courtesy of the lovely Chelsea

1. What’s your favorite television show  for each day of the week?

Sunday: Dexter, Homeland, The Walking Dead
Monday: House, 2 Broke Girls, HIMYM
Tuesday: New Girl, NCIS, Raising Hope, Covert Affairs
Wednesday: Modern Family, Happy Endings, Up All Night
Thursday: Community, Big Bang Theory, Rules of Engagement
Friday: Supernatural, Fringe, Grimm
Saturday: Catching up on the DVR.

2. How many times do you wear your jeans before you wash them?

Usually 2-3 times, at most.

3. What is your favorite pasta shape?

I love pasta of all shapes and sizes but there’s a special place in my heart for elbow macaroni.

4. Do you read newspapers?

Sometimes. Because I just love that grimy feeling on my hands.

5. Do you sleep in socks?

Sleep, no. Pass out? On occasion.

6. Favorite genre of movies?

Action, Comedy, Thriller. (I’m supposed to pick one?)

7. How do you feel about wrestling?

I dated a wrestler when I was a freshman in HS. That’s about as far as my interest goes.

8. Should men pluck their eyebrows?

Take care of the unibrow. Leave the rest.

9. Do you have dimples?

Yup, I get it from my momma.

10. Do you like to camp?

I can’t honestly answer this question since I haven’t legit gone camping. Ask me again next July.

****

Oh hey, are you a blogger too? You should really check out my new project over there.

Fine.

When I’m talking to my best friend online and she says “Fine” as a reply to something, it immediately makes me wonder if she’s upset.

For the longest time, the word ‘Fine’ as a reply had been associated with “I’m annoyed at/with you and don’t really feel like dealing with you.” (Or something similar). It was tied to a negative feeling.

I know that’s not the case with my best friend (She will tell me when she’s annoyed with me) but that gut wrenching feeling still jumps at me at times. Like yesterday. My heart just sank because I honestly thought she was upset and wasn’t telling me.

I hate that feeling.

We know words are powerful but the way an association can linger for years is amazing.

The way one single word can take us 5 years back, just like a smell can take us back in time to a moment.

Complete with all of the feelings, whether they’re good or bad.

“Fine” is only one of the words that I’ve proactively worked on disassociating with a time in my life. It’s not always easy because if your guard is down, your psyche will jump up and attack you at the most unfortunate moments.

It’s amazing what a single word can do.

When the cable’s out…

Last night, I came home to find that our cable was out. (We’re lucky though because we’ve had our power while other parts of NE DC have been powerless over the last couple of days.)

Andrew was still at work, and I was not feeling well so I decided to just clean up a little while waiting for cable to come back. [It still wasn’t back this morning]

When Andrew got home, I was nearly ready to fall asleep but wanted to spend some quality time with him. I was too tired for any kind of strategy/board games so I picked up my copy of Bossypants.

I’m going to read to you now,” I said.

This is something I had done in the past with Jim Bruer’s book but life has been so chaotic lately that our quality time has consisted of falling asleep while watching TV.

So we changed for bed, and then sat on the couch while I read a few chapters of Bossypants out loud.

As strange as it sounds, it’s soothing.  He doesn’t have time to read, and it’s a good bonding exercise versus me telling him about the books I read.

Side note: When I was younger, I wanted to be a teacher, and a news anchor.  In middle school, I worked on our morning show. When I was at home sitting at my desk, doing homework, I would read out loud from my textbook as if I was reading to a classroom. Yes, I’m a strange little panda but we all have our dreams.

 

 

Ten on Tuesday: Randomness

I have a ton of to tell you guys, but no time to do it! I promise I’ll get a real blog post up this week but for today, I’m snatching this from the lovely Nora! Ten on Tuesday is hosted by Chelsea and this week’s questions are from Lisa.

1. If you work, do you drive to work or take public transportation?
It really depends on the day.  Some mornings, Andrew drives me to work but I usually end up taking the metro (or walking from halfway if the metro is just atrocious). As much as I love to drive, parking fees in D.C. are awful so I can’t afford to drive and park everyday now.

2. How often do you get your haircut? Do you go to the same person every time?
Not as often as I should!  I go about every 3 months, unless I get the urge to try something new (like hack it all off!). I used to always get it cut by the same person in high school & college but since moving to the city, I’ve been trying out different hair dressers.

3. Do you read the newspaper? If so, a hardcopy or the online version?

I read the online version unless I happen to grab the newspaper at the office.

4. What is the best book you have read this year?

*Sigh* I haven’t read any books this year…Check back with me in May.

5. What is the best movie you have seen this year?
I haven’t been watching that many movies lately either! Hop was super cute though.

6. Do you tend to crave sweet or salty foods?
It really depends on my mood and what my body is doing at any given day.  Sometimes I crave a combination of both but lately, it’s been more salty than sweet.

7. Do you eat breakfast every day? If so, what do you have?

Lately, yes. I either have a bowl of Special K cereal or yogurt.

8. If you celebrate Easter, what Easter treat/candy are you most looking forward to?
I don’t celebrate Easter but I’m looking forward to all the candy being 75% AFTER Easter.

9. How late is “sleeping in” to you?

It really depends on the day and how late I was up the night before. If I was up till 4 in the morning, I’ll probably end up sleeping in till 9 or 10ish.

10. Where are you going on your next vacation?
Seattle! I’m going camping with my Numbah 2 and all of my west coast loves in July.

*If you miss me on days I don’t blog, go fan my Facebook page. I try to have a daily discussion up there everyday to keep the conversation going and check in on you guys 🙂 Today we’re talking about music. Yesterday was books!

Oh Who I am (At the moment)

(I’m totally snagging this idea from the gorgeous Kerri)

I am…

just two days away from yet another birthday, wondering if the universe will reveal the punchline to my life on this April Fool’s Day.

…slowly becoming that girl. Wedding-planning, giddy-over-dresses, ready to throw the best party of the decade, sending her bridesmaids picture after picture of ideas girl.

…seeing the pay-out of all of my relentless hard work over the last two years.

…insanely grateful for the three great men in my life who have bonded over their love for making fun of me. On that note, I am so lucky to have a patient Dad, and the sweetest brother ever (even when he’s being a brat.) I love the way they’ve accepted Andrew into the family.

…way too excited about seeing Hop on my birthday and have absolutely no shame about it.

…that girl who gets momentarily excited about pet giraffes being real (even when I know they can’t be).

…a tad outside the comfort zone when it comes to my body image, but working hard to regain control.

…craving honey like whoa lately. Also craving sliced pickles, chipotle mayo and BEEF. (Maybe I shouldn’t be writing this when I’m so hungry.)

…loving the XBox Kinect.

…finally finding my place in the professional world and redefining my own image.

…a writer.

…completely random.

…obsessing over cute shoes.

…falling in love with D.C. more and more everyday.

…way behind on my blog reading & miss all of you.

…surrounded by the quirkiest people who embrace my weirdness 100%.

…curious.