**insert post title here**

When I can’t decide on a topic to write about, I’ll usually start writing whatever is on the forefront of my mind. The problem is that there are usually a multitude of topics being thunk through in my brain… so I’ll end up with a weird combo of subjects that don’t necessarily mesh very well.

Regardless, I’m going to write something. Get ready.

I smell (lol) something that is… vinegar-ish maybe? Almost like fermenting, though. Like apple cider vinegar, but alcoholic. I think? I don’t know what’s causing it, which is kinda annoying but there ya go.

In unrelated news, I have a pile of dishes with little bits of food that are rotting in little pools of water and stuffs.

Wait. You don’t think that… Mr. Roger’s wasn’t abducted by the Area 51 peeps, right? I mean, we don’t have proof that he wasn’t. Right? But why would they even want Mr. Rogers? Does he know something that we don’t know?

WOAH! I just remembered what I actually wanted to write about! 🙌 But I also forgot again as I was looking for that emoji which wasn’t really necessary. Aw, darn.

I’ll remember again later and probably write it out properly. We’ll see.

Thoughts on imposter syndrome and my health.

In preparation for writing this post, I decided to take some random imposter syndrome tests I found online. It was a very spontaneous decision so I don’t know what to make of it yet.

Note to self: You’re probably experiencing imposter syndrome about your imposter syndrome. Please try to remember that you don’t need to prove anything or need to manipulate the results.

Wait! What is imposter syndrome?

Let’s all get on the same page here. Imposter syndrome is a phenomenon (do do dododo) where your brain doesn’t believe that you have the abilities you claim or that you’re not worthy of recognition for what you accomplish.

Here’s a proper definition.

Imposter syndrome is the inability to internalize your successes, coupled with the fear of being outed as an unqualified fraud.

If you’re reading my blog then you probably already know all about imposter syndrome. 😜

What type of imposter am I?

First was a test on the Grammarly blog. This test assumed that you do at least occasionally experience imposter syndrome and tried to categorize it kinda like a personality test would. The types of imposters, as defined by Dr. Valerie Young, are as follows:

  1. The Perfectionist
  2. The Superhero
  3. The Natural Genius
  4. The Rugged Individualist
  5. The Expert

Before I began the test I thought that I was gonna be a strong perfectionist. My actual result?

The superhero! 🦸‍♀️ (Bold and italic, Matthew? Yaasss, Queen!)

That’s right! I’m a superhero imposter syndrome haver! 😁 The test has this to say about my result:

The Superhero imposter is one who feels like a less legitimate professional than their colleagues and takes on more and more and pushes hard to seem like the real deal.

In fact, Superhero imposters are workaholics, hooked on the validation they get from work rather than the actual work. Fixing this kind of imposter syndrome should be focused on training yourself to find internal validation rather than external validation. By shifting your focus, you’ll learn how to incorporate more balance into your workload.

I can relate, but I’m not entirely sure what to make of it. While I do have some validation issues–probably more than I realize or acknowledge–I would not call myself a workaholic. Though I may just be denying reality. Who knows for sure? I certainly don’t.

My partner took the test too and got “the perfectionist” and oh boy can I relate to what that one had to say!

Perfectionists are the most common personality type to experience imposter syndrome, and it makes sense – perfectionists set unrealistic expectations for performance, and when those expectations aren’t met, they question their self worth. As a perfectionist you likely have trouble recognizing your achievements and feeling proud of yourself since everything could be done better.

To beat imposter syndrome, you should focus on learning to celebrate your successes and truly appreciate how much you accomplish. Likewise, when you make a mistake, remember that mistakes are natural. Accepting that your work will never be truly perfect will free you to start your projects and try new things.

It’s weird though because while I think that I’m predominantly a perfectionist, I’ve always wanted to be good at failing and using those experiences as a learning tool. I even adopted the mantra “take chances, make mistakes, and get messy!” from The Magic School Bus as my own. Maybe this is a blind spot of mine? Perhaps I am less the perfectionist I thought and more just of a workaholic seeking the validation of others? Mayhaps I shouldn’t be reading so much into this silly online quiz that I googled randomly?

Maybe both types are true and accurate for myself. I do identify with each of the descriptions and can think of lots of examples in my life. I do seek validation and acceptance as well as setting unrealistic expectations for myself and then beat myself up when I don’t meet them. It’s all so complex!! 😫

If you’re wondering about the other imposter types, you can read all about them in this article from The Muse.

But how bad is it, Doctor Internet?

The next test was linked to from a blog post, but the test was gone! But my Wayback Machine browser extension kicked in and showed me the archived test from 2016. This was just a simple little questionnaire that told me I have a moderate amount of imposter syndrome. It had this to say about the matter:

Sometimes you worry that whatever success you have enjoyed was simply the result of being in the right place at the right time, or that people will discover you’re a fraud.

Okay, makes sense. That’s fairly broad, but good to know. It’s here that I want to remind everyone, including myself, that confirmation bias is deffos a thing to be weary of in this little exercise. If you go looking online to see if you have some sort of problem, you’ll probably find your suspicions are confirmed. But I definitely know that imposter syndrome is a major part of my daily life, I just want to use these tests as a way to explore the issue for myself.

The next test said is was “developed to help individuals determine whether or not they have Imposter characteristics and, if so, to what extent they are suffering.” Good to know that I’m suffering!

After I finished answering the long list of questions I was presented with this helpful graphic:

That’s not as much ‘helpful’ as it is ‘scary’. 🧐 At least the colour matches my hair!

Last one, I promise!

The last test I took was quite intensive with its questions; I felt like I was filling out some kind of overly personal marketing survey to earn a gift card! But I pressed on and got another graphic which was less ‘scary’-looking.

You may take pride in some of your achievements, but still struggle to take full ownership of them. Sometimes, in spite of all that you have accomplished and the effort you put into achieving it, you feel like a bit of an imposter. As a result, you may attribute some of your success to factors beyond your control and therefore, feel like you haven’t entirely earned the respect and praise that you were given. You want to believe that you are worthy of success, but can’t fully convince yourself.

Cool. Good to know. I mean, all of our lives’ successes and failures are to some degree attributable to factors outside of our control. Does that mean we don’t deserve the success? Does that mean we didn’t have some part to play in the outcome?

What does all of it mean?

I had a thought yesterday that was the inspiration for this little adventure. It’s popped into my head on occasion but I haven’t given it too much conscious thought in the past. What if my Crohn’s Disease isn’t as bad as I think it is and the symptoms I perceive are there because my mind is rationalizing undesired or otherwise lazy behaviour?

In other words, am I making it all up? Am I just using my Crohn’s as an excuse?

I know that I’m definitely not making it up. My symptoms and physical challenges are all too real and there are tonnes of lab reports that prove it. True I tend to be asymptomatic these days, which is good, but that’s because I’m in remission. It’s not because my Crohn’s is fake or made up. It doesn’t mean my Crohn’s is gone or that I won’t have problems, symptoms, and bad days… it means that I’m in a good place, physically speaking, which is ideal. It’s good!

That all being said, because of the Crohn’s (and probably for various other reasons) there are mental health issues at play. It’s part of the deal. Depression and anxiety are challenges that I face and Crohn’s doesn’t help at all. It makes it hard to do day-to-day tasks or feel motivated to work on projects.

Anyway, the point is that I have imposter syndrome and it affects many parts of my daily thinking. (Like maybe I’m not actually human after all!) It’s not great, but I know it’s a factor so I can manage it to some degree. Plus it’s just the way it is and a part of who I am.

I’m not a Crohn’s imposter.

Why I find Messenger to be a pain.

This post brought to you in part by Starbucks. Free WiFi and not-free snacks available now at Starbuckses everywhere!

For the past few weeks I’ve been mostly avoiding Facebook Messenger on my phone. I realize that I already do that fairly often without meaning to, but this time is slightly different. It started out as a passive non-decision–That is, I just ignored new messages when they arrived and told myself that I’d respond later or something. You know, the normal kinda thing that I do when I’m just not feeling socially able to deal with it right away.

After a little while I decided to make a conscious choice to stop responding to messages. Unless somebody needed an immediate response for something important, I would just ignore the messages. This made it an active choice that I made. Instead of simply neglecting to check messages or open notifications, I was actively ignoring people by choice.

Side note: I’m just spewing things as they come to mind… so this post may not make sense totally.

Now, if I’m ignoring Messenger intentionally vs unintentionally, does that make a difference? Like, should I feel bad about ignoring people that are wanting to talk to me? I think that it depends, but largely I shouldn’t feel bad about it.

See, the reason that I wanted to actively choose to ignore messages is so I wouldn’t feel obligated to respond. Does that make any sense? Maybe not. But for me, knowing that I don’t have to respond to messages helps take the pressure off.

Everyone and everything is trying to get our attention these days, and it’s quite invasive because we each have a phone with us pretty much all day long. I have my phone with me a lot, and with it I carry a slight sense of obligation that society sort of attaches to modern life. We need to be available, connected, and totally up-to-date on everything. God forbid that we aren’t informed about the latest happenings or newest trends. Everyone needs to throw in their two cents and react.

Where was I going with this… Ugh. I need to gather my thoughts again.

I think my point was that Messenger comes with a sense of obligation. By consciously choosing to ignore Messenger, I kinda remove that feeling for myself. I’m no free to respond or not respond as I wish! Sure, nothing’s actually changed except my perspective…but it makes a difference. By choosing to ignore Messenger and remove the obligation, I’ve actually been able to engage with some of my long-distance friends more than I used to. I don’t know why it’s made such a big difference. Maybe I’m just crazy.

I’ll come back and finish this post later.


Okay! It’s later. The next day, in fact. I had to leave the Starbucks so I could have TV night and now I don’t remember where my thought process was for this post. I’ll try to get back there somehow.

I think that I was just meaning that there are pressures and expectations put on us these days that we don’t even realize exist. Small little things like responding to messages become a big stress and it’s not even because of what those messages are saying but simply just the fact that we have to deal with them–are expected to deal with them. It’s one more thing on the big pile of responsibilities we have.

Whether we mean to or not, we take on that stress and let it build up. Maybe we don’t all have the same problem with messages as I do, but I’m sure there’s a bunch of little things that causes certain people similar feelings.

So that’s basically it. I’ve given myself permission to ignore messages and leave responses until a later time. Sure, part of the problem may be that I tend to have conversations over text more than quick communications about a certain topic. Either way, I needed to write a post about something and this is what came out. Hope it was worth the read. ;P

M3

Where to start?

I sometimes have high expectations for myself.

🤨

Okay… very high expectations.

😑

Yes, yes. I often have unrealistically high expectations for myself.

This blog is one of those things. Even though I don’t end up putting too much effort into what I write on here (most things end up being silly and totally great!), I do tend to let my high expectations prevent me from just writing.

It’s annoying and I don’t like it. I find that it gets in the way of many things and leads to my low-key freaking out or nearly breaking down because I’m not good enough. Or, at the very least, the things I do aren’t good enough.

Question to self: What even is this “good enough”? Good enough for what? For whom? And why?

Even now, as my partner read what I wrote so far, I’m feeling like this post won’t be that good either. I mean, it’s probably because I don’t have a point to make… I started this post as I often do; not knowing what I’m going to type.

Maybe it’s all part of imposter syndrome? Or maybe since I’m generally good at doing a lot of things, I fear that I’ll not do a great job, so instead of doing my best and having it possibly fail, I either intentionally fail and laugh it off as a joke, or I stress about it and worry that whatever I’m doing won’t be good enough.

But again… good enough for what? What standard do I need to meet? Why can’t I just not be worried about this?!?!

Man, I need to chill.

Anyway…

I actually intended to give you an update about my life over the past several months. Let’s do that instead!

Sooo… where to start?

I’m tempted to start at the very beginning… 🎶 A very good place to start! 🎶 etc, etc

Over the past couple of weeks, I was actually surprised with very unexpected visits from three people! One of my aunts was in town and texted me two Fridays ago… and then last Friday my sister came home and we dragged her bags down to the ferry… and also last Friday one of my bestest friends from my home town texted me and we had a wonderful evening with each other and our partners! I hadn’t seen her in almost TWO YEARS!!! It’s crazy!

It’s been quite the time, let me tell you… 😸 and quite the boost for my spirit!

Other than that… I left my position at my cafe, which is really exciting and good for my overall health. (I was going crazy over there!) I kinda miss that place and making drinks for the regular customers, but I don’t miss being in charge and having to deal with all of the manager-type junk by myself.

The one downside is that I should probably start working somewhere else fairly soon. I’ve already applied at IKEA (HA!) and a few other places, but I have no clue what I’ll be doing. It’s an adventure!

Spring is definitely here and summer is speeding towards us! (Us being Vancouver and the surrounding area.) I’m so happy to see life coming back in my surroundings along with the warmer weather. It makes getting outside more pleasant and brings the opportunity for more outdoor activities, such as kayaking, hiking, geocaching, and spraying smokers with water! Can’t wait!

I also have renewed creative juices flowing and new inspiration for projects that I want to work on! I’m really excited about them all, and I can’t wait to share them with the world! It will take some time before I can do that, and I’ll also need to buy some new equipment, but I really want to do more projects. I need to do more projects. I need that outlet.

And after all of that rambling I hope that you’re not left feeling confuzzled and dazed. That’s all for now, so I’ll say bye bye.

See ya later, friends! 👋

Washing Dishes

Let me tell you something. Washing dishes is one of those activities that I hate and love at the same time.

Why I kinda like washing the dishes.

It doesn’t take too much thinking to accomplish this task, which is the biggest draw for me. I can listen to audio drama, or podcasts, or even watch Netflix while washing. A dishes dance party is also a really fun option! Although it’s also nice to just… think. It can be a great point of disconnect.

Why I mostly don’t like washing the dishes.

Washing the dishes is yucky!! I’m a bit of a germaphobe at times, and washing the dishes isn’t totally appealing to me. Once I get started, it’s not too bad most of the time. But sometimes, I just can’t handle it.

It’s quite frustrating since I’m a highly clean person. Like, I’m literally OCD about things. So some people say that I should enjoy cleaning! But I don’t. I like having things clean and organised, but the process of cleaning things isn’t always appealing. That’s not what the point is. The point is to have it be organised. That’s what I like (and sometimes need!).

Conclusion.

Washing the dishes is not always fun for me. What’s kinda funny is that I’m about to wash some dishes. 😛

Note to self: Don’t wash the dishes so late at night. Go to bed! Do them first thing in the morning.

M3

Pirate milk. It’s a thing.

I mentioned here once before that when I was younger, I started calling chocolate milk “pirate milk”. It was mostly because I’m silly like that, but also partly because our family ran a day home at the time, and the kids liked the name. Pirate milk because chocolate is like gold, and Pirates like gold, eh? Hence the name.

To my recollection, I haven’t heard anyone else call it pirate milk outside of my house. But I think that should change. So I’m calling on you, dear reader of my blog, to help start a revolution. Let’s get this thing rolling! Bring on the #PirateMilk!

I should see if that hashtag had been used previously.

Note to self: Google “pirate milk”. It might already be a thing.

Edit: Okay, so it turns out “pirate milk” is the name of a mix drink made with rum. Typical. Ah, well. I’ll still call chocolate milk “pirate milk”. And you should too!!

Note to self: It’s dangerous to search for pictures of chocolate milk. Do so with extreme caution!

M3

Celebrating one week…with chocolate!

I just ate a few bites of my chocolate Easter bunny. Why? Because I was craving chocolate. But then I remembered that I hadn’t written today’s blog post AND that it has been one week since I started posting daily. That’s crazy! And the chocolate suddenly became somewhat celebratory for me. This is the first time that I’ve posted to a blog each day for a solid week. Yay for firsts!

Naturally, the rest of this post will be about feet. But first, can we just acknowledge the yumminess that is chocolate? Like, really. Who even thought of that? Actually, just a moment.

Okay, I’m back. I just visited an amazing place!!! Facts About Chocolate has so many facts about chocolate. It’s great! Liquid chocolate was the way to serve it back in the day. That sounds amazing! But back to who invented chocolate. The Olmec are believed to be the originators of chocolate, though we can’t be sure. After that, the Maya used cacao beans as currency and integrated liquid chocolate into much of their culture.

Note to self: Add “chocolate body paint” to the list of reasons to lick other people. That sounds fun!

Look. We all agree that chocolate is great. But have you ever tried a deep fried Mars bar? They’re amazing!! If you ever have the opportunity to try one or make it yourself, DO IT!

I’m sorry, this was supposed to be a post about feet. Let’s get back to that.

Feet are weird. They’re like hands with webbing between the fingers and knuckles that moved towards the end of each digit. (Also, the thumb fell off and another fat finger was grown to replace it.) We use feet to walk, to swim, to play sports, and push a door when our arms are full. Honestly, without feet, we’d be stuck. So I’m quite a big fan of feet! After all, I am six feet tall, which makes me a literal big fan of feet.

But seriously. Chocolate milk, am I right? In my family, we call it “pirate milk”. Why? Because it’s sought after like pirate gold, and it’s milk. Also because I started calling it that and the name stuck. (I was kind of a trendsetter in the family.) Now that I’m telling you, maybe it can become a thing. Pirate milk! You heard it here first. 🙂

Here’s a question. What if we mixed feet and chocolate? You could dip your feet into chocolate! Like putting your feet into mud except that it’s edible mud that’s really chocolate. Sounds fun and relaxing, right? Almost like a therapeutic treatment that you’d get at a fancy spa. “Chocolate foot dip with gold flakes.” This needs to be a thing!

So ends my daily dose of random writing. Thank you for your time and attention.

Also, a very happy birthday to Queen Victoria! Long live The Queen!

M3

Little adventure

I like adventure. I especially like adventure in the great out-of-doors! Like going on a big river trip or camping through BC. But sadly, adventure like that doesn’t happen every day. (For the most part…)

To deal with the lack of “big adventure” in my everyday, I look for “little adventure”; which is very similar to big adventure, but involves a lot more imagination. At least the way that I do it. It’s taking the small and insignificant, filtering it through a weird algorithm that doesn’t make sense, and making it big and the most vital thing in human history. I find that looking at things this way can help me to appreciate the small stuff and keep me engaged in the moment, instead of just waiting for the next big adventure.

Along the same vein, I also look for missions. Tasks that need completing, either big or small. You see the important tasks that people on TV complete with impossible circumstances surrounding them and threatening the very existence of planet Earth? Yeah, I basically lived that today.

How, you ask? Well, if I didn’t finish cleaning, fixing, and installing this printer at work today, my boss would’ve been unable to print off the super important notes that he needs for a top-secret meeting with the first aliens to ever contact Earth. See? Little adventure and mini mission. Fun, right?!

Okay… so you don’t have to take it that far. But I think that it’s very helpful to use techniques like this to keep your mind engaged, your imagination active, and your fun meter filled. Plus it’s fun to hum the Mission: Impossible theme while scrubbing a toilet.

Bingo! I have solved boredom. 😛