Tuesday, January 24, 2012


By Stephen Doyle (oprah.com)

Happy New Year! I must apologise for the rather late start in blogging this year but I was actually doing everybody a favour. You see, since the clock struck 00:00 on 01.01.2012 I've had a dark cloud following me. It must be all those zeros, ones and twos or the fact that I have 3 months before turning TWENTY- FIVE. It feels like a crisis of sorts. Consequently, I need a chat with father time and the lady who runs the fountain of youth.

I'm anxious, uncertain, slightly cynical, fraught with worry and hosting all kinds of pity parties throughout the day. Instead of thinking about the things I’ve accomplished, I’m more concerned with the things I haven’t gotten around to. It’s as if I have subconsciously given myself a deadline and now I’m begging for an extension. With this comes a multitude of middle class concerns: Yes, I’ve travelled but not to Asia or Europe. I have a degree but will I ever have my dream job? I know where I want to be in 10 years but I have no assurance that I’m taking the right steps to get there. I read but not more than I watch TV. I eat more than I work out. I have a savings account with no money in it. The only things I own are clothes and books. I have no clear vision of how this year will unfold and there’s nothing like “the stress of not knowing that destroys ones sanity”.

Having established that, I can only ground myself with the things I know for sure. I have great skin and can no longer afford to sleep with make up on. Exercising releases all my anxiety. I need my body more than it needs me. Thank you and please are two very important expressions in any language. A quick prayer for peace and clarity can be more elevating than an hour mass. If I haven’t written down a “to do” list, I’m likely to forget. Being on time is harder than being late. Love trumps fear. Barbie isn’t real. Music is healing. I must write down my epiphanies before they’re overridden by the next fruitless thought. Keep my Facebook page clean. Reading improves my vocab. 3AM is the devils hour. I trip, bite my tongue or bang my toe immediately after having a negative thought. It’s ok to say “no”.

The trending theme for 2012 seems to be YOLO: You Only Live Once. It’s a green light for living your best life and a reminder that anxiety, worry, cynicism and self- pity are not absolutes.

Dear self, get over yourself. Quite frankly you have a lot to be thankful for in the 25 years you've lived.

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