Getting The Juices Flowing

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Now if I was in a naughtier frame of mind, that title could mean this was a totally different type of post… but as I generally don’t talk sex on here, or at least not in an overt blunt manner, that’s not what that title means.

For anyone who’s been around these parts lately (or not so lately, to be more accurate), you’d have noticed a decidedly lack of activity since mid-August, with the previous couple of months being very sporadic.

Once again, I’ve become a lazy blogger and writer, and it’s becoming increasingly hard to get back into the flow of things.  To get those creative juices flowing, so to speak.

Or maybe not…

Repeatedly over the past few months, I’ve had ideas for blog posts or things I’d like to write about but I just haven’t.  More than anything I just keep dreading the thought of sitting down at the laptop after a full day’s work in the office in front of the computer.

My eyes (and brain) can only take so much I think.

So instead of writing I’ve been voraciously devouring books on my Kindle, gotten re-addicted to Candy Crush, and watching Netflix like it’s going out of season.  So instead of writing cause I don’t want to be in front of the laptop, I’m glued to the tv, my tablet or my Kindle… not much different, right?

And all the while I’d doing that, I’m having ideas pop into my head of things to write about, or possible (fiction) stories to write, and so forth… but yet I still don’t do anything about it, and the ideas either continue to rattle around my head or get forgotten into the ether.

So what the hell has prompted me to actually sit down today and write?  How’d I manage to shockingly drag my ass out of bed or off the sofa to sit in front of the laptop?

To be honest, it almost didn’t happen at all.  I was all snug and warm under the duvet, with unlimited lives on Candy Crush and could have easily just stayed there all afternoon.

But what kept going through my head was snippets of a conversation I’d had with a mate at a birthday party in Soho.  A mate who’s had some short stories or poetry published, and is about to have more of his work published in the next six months or so.

And as thrilled as I was to hear of how well he was doing and the palpable excitement in his voice as he explained his plans, all I could think about was ‘why isn’t this me?’.

Yeah… good old jealous selfish me couldn’t just be happy for him, but I had to think about how that’s exactly where I want to be in life.  Well, not exactly.  He writes poetry and children books (with a touch of horror), whereas I’m looking at LGBT fiction, with a side of M2M romance thrown in.

But from our conversation last night, I can understand why he’s doing so well at the moment – he’s working at it.  He dedicates time each and every day to write a certain number of words.  He makes sure he takes the time to hone his writing, and pushes himself to accomplish it even when he’s not feeling up to it.

And me?  I’m just sitting here like a bump on a log wishing I could be published.  And haven’t done a damn thing to get to where he is at the moment.  Or more accurately, where I want to be.

I know the only person that’s going to drive me to succeed is me.  Not my mate, not some mythical publisher who’s going to come out of the woodwork wanting to put my words into print.

Not even you, the lovely people who’ve taken the time out of their busy days to stay with me even when I wasn’t sure I was coming back.

I know I need to get off my ass and motivate myself to do something about what I want out of life.  And if I don’t, then I only have myself to blame when I don’t succeed.

Here’s hoping this is the wake up call I need to get my butt in gear… time will tell, right?

Bear With Me

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Haven’t disappeared again… just life gets busy sometimes, and before you know it several weeks have passed.

Plus it’s summertime and the weather has been faaaab for once in the UK (recent heat wave), so been enjoying it where I can.

Though sadly have only been to the beach once. . Need to fix that. 😉

The Trials of Being an ‘Average’ Gay

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Life as a gay man can have it’s ups and downs.  And if you’re considered an ‘average’ gay, then you may be in for a few additional ones.  At least that’s the way society and the media makes us believe.

We all know that a lot of gay men out there can be very superficial when it comes to appearance (and I include myself in that generalisation…), but have we reached a point where the stereotyping is starting to harm those who may not fit that perfect mould?  Not everyone can have the body of a Greek god with perfect hair, muscles upon muscles, great abs, a large package, etc.

Unfortunately, the media does tend to paint the picture that only the most attractive amongst us could possibly be considered successful, happy, or desirable.  That you ‘must’ look like an Abercrombie model in order to be attractive.

When you really get down to it, the actual percentage that would fit that stereotype is probably quite slim, whereas the rest of us could be considered average with varying degrees up or down.  But yet we’ve somehow allowed ourselves to buy into the shallowness and try to strive to reach that unattainable ‘perfection’ and hotness – the perfect body, the hot AF boyfriend, the ideal life.

What a load of crap, huh?

Of course, this doesn’t apply to everyone.  Not everyone is turned on by an awesome set of abs, pecs that are marble-like slabs, a chiselled chin, or an ass so tight and peachy you could bounce a quarter off it.

There are whole sub-sects of the gay community that perceive things differently, and have different ideals of what is beautiful (bears, chubby-chasers, etc).  But sadly the media would consider them ‘average’ and perhaps even dismiss them for not wanting to live up to what’s considered an ideal.

Regardless of what you find attractive, it’s more likely that this ‘yearning’ for what others have is due to all of us (gay, straight or anyone in between) regularly comparing our lives to those around us, or to those depicted in the media.  And as much as we know deep down it’s all a facade, we can’t help but to buy into the happy-happy everyone posts on their social media and think ‘I wish that was me’ or ‘I want that’.

But does that necessarily mean your life will be more difficult when you’re just considered ‘average’ (*gasp* the horror…)?  Are you less likely to become successful at you job, or snag that man of your dreams?

Well… yes and no.  It’s all dependant on how you approach life.

As difficult as it can be at times, you can’t live your life comparing yourself to others.  There’s no magic formula for where you should be in life by a certain age, just a bunch of pressure you’ve put on yourself.  And there’s nothing saying that you have to have the same things in your life that your friends or family do.

And that’s the joy of life – it’s different for everyone.  And no matter how you look, you might have the same insecurities, hopes or dreams as that super hot guy beside you on the tube, or as that regular bloke sitting across the pub from you.  Or you might have different ones.

In the end, the most important thing in life is how we perceive ourselves and we really shouldn’t allow the media or other people’s perceptions of beauty to detract from our own self worth.  We should own our average-ness and not allow others to make us feel ‘less than’ because we don’t fit their mould.

Because when you get right down to it, you’re exactly who you’re supposed to be right at this moment.


Can’t help but look around and question whether or not you belong? Magazines, online publications, and nearly every TV show might show a gay couple cuddled up, but why do they all look like supermodels?

Source: The Trouble With Being Average Looking in the Gay Community – GayGuys.com

Friendships are Weird

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I’ve always had trouble making friends, and sometimes I think it’s because some people are just weird.  Or at least how they treat their friendships can be.

We all have those friend where it’s hard to recall how the friendship started in the first place… or why it’s even continued to this day.

Or we’ve looked at a friend and wondered why the hell we’re even friends.  There isn’t much in common between us or many mutual friends, and sometimes there are things they do that just make them beyond annoying.

But I think that’s normal.  Or at least I hope it is, because I’m positive there must be some people out there that look at me the same way.  LOL

Now I know I can sometimes have a slightly skewed view on things, and friendships aren’t any different.  And any perceived weirdness may just be in my own head…

I sometimes feel like certain friendships aren’t equally balanced, where the one person’s needs are being met more than the other’s.  Examples of this could be where everyone always ends up doing what the more extroverted person wants, or they tend to steer most conversations towards what they want to talk about.

In fact, when they do monopolise the conversation with a more introverted person, it can become quite difficult for that shyer person to get their point or needs across, let alone met.  Which can become quite frustrating.

And sometimes these overly social people can easily miss the signs that their less-outgoing friends aren’t on the same page as them (or even in the same book).  They can get so focused on their own enjoyment of life that they might not notice that those around them may feel left out or left behind.

Or they’re so busy with their own lives that there’s no time or recognition that perhaps a dear friend may need someone to talk through some things or a shoulder to cry on.  Or even just hang out with without it being a party night or loads of people around.

Or perhaps they do realise the other person needs to talk through things but purposely ignores or pushes it aside so they don’t have to listen to another person’s negativity.

Then there are those in committed relationships who seem to only hang out with other couples, inadvertently excluding their single friends from any plans.  Or even if they do include them, they end up being the only single at the ‘party’.

And of course my biggest pet-peeve is those who’re so wrapped up in their active lives that they don’t realise they’re excluding those who may not be as busy.  I don’t think it’s done with any sort of malice, but there are those out there who’ll make out like they don’t plan anything… but yet they never have any time to hang out.

Or they’ll make you feel bad for feeling left out, making it seem like it’s your own fault because you aren’t making the plans or organising events for people to get together.  That it’s your own fault that people don’t include you.

Obviously every person can manage their lives their own way, and that’s fair enough.  To each their own.  Some just like being busy all the time.

But to me, if you’re so busy that you can’t make time for a supposedly good friend when they need you (and not have to ‘schedule’ it in ahead of time…), then how can you possibly expect them to do the same?

Friendships are weird and wonderful things… but they need to go both ways sometimes.

Just a Face in the Crowd

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Sometimes it’s hard to feel like I stand out in life.  That there’s something about me that makes me unique from everyone else.

And I don’t think this is the same as having a purpose in life.  This is more about feeling like there’s something special about myself that others may find interesting and make them want to get to know me better.

Or perhaps I just feel like I’m a boring person.  That I don’t really have much to talk about when trying to have a conversation with people.

Or maybe I’m just crap at talking about myself.

And as silly as it may seem to some, I actually feel slightly horrified when someone DOES try to engage me in small talk about me and my life.  For whatever reason, I’ll freeze up and act like there’s nothing of interest to talk about.  I’ll literally downplay anything exciting that’s been going on recently.

Curiously when I look back, this has actually been an ongoing thing most of my life.  It’s like if I actually boast about something good that’s been going on, then maybe that other person may figure out that there’s really not much interesting about me.  Or that maybe I really don’t deserve the accolades being given, rightfully earned or not.

Maybe I’m just afraid of being the centre of attention.

Is it a self-confidence issue?  Definitely.

I’m not sure why, but I grew up feeling like I wasn’t good enough or didn’t fit a certain expectation of who I should be as an adult.  As if there was some standard I never felt I could live up to, so ended up spending most of my life feeling less than everyone else around me.

Or perhaps in my youth, it was instilled in me that doing well and showing off how well you did was a bad thing.  That it made me boastful or egotistic in some way to celebrate any accomplishments I might have made.

An example of this was about 9 years ago when I travelled to Copenhagen with my LBGT softball group to compete in the World OutGames.  Because there weren’t enough teams for a proper men’s tournament, the organisers allowed us to compete in another sport of our choosing for no additional fee.

As I’d been bowling since I was 9 years old, I decided it be a laugh to sign up for the bowling tournament.  There were a few other guys doing the same, so I’d still know a few people and wouldn’t feel too out of place around strangers.

Now the big shock was how I somehow found my groove and kicked some serious ass.  And I ended up winning a Gold in the singles competition and a Silver in the doubles.  This was especially shocking as I’d never really won much as a kid/teen in bowling competitions, and was an average bowler at best as an adult.

But afterwards I got all shy and almost embarrassed that I’d done so well in the tournament!

I even tried to hide my medals behind each other as we marched in the Pride parade with the rest of the athletes at the end of the week.  Like most things in my life, I downplayed my accomplishment and even tried to give excuses why I won.

Stupid huh?

I seem to do it in most aspects of my life.  Hell, I even do it with this blog that I’ve been writing for almost 10 years now.  I’ll get all shy when someone shows the least bit of interest in my writing or asks to read any of it, when I should be truly proud of what I’ve created here over the past decade.

Odds are other people probably feel like I stand out more than I think I do and that I am special in some way.  And hopefully one day I can allow myself to feel that about myself too.

Having a Purpose in Life

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For some people, finding their life’s passion is as easy as breathing.  There’s just something they’re so good at that there’s no question about them doing anything but that thing.  They were clearly born to do that specific thing, whatever it is.

And then for a wide range of people, it’s not as simple but with some hard work and deep soul searching, they eventually get there.  Some may find it early in life, and others later in life.

And then there’s the rest of the people out there who tend to feel lost throughout their lives.  They either continue to struggle to find their niche, or perhaps just don’t have one.  As far as they can tell that is.

I’ve always felt I fit that last group.

Growing up, I was labelled the ‘smart’ kid early on as I tended to get good grades and rarely got in trouble.  I’ve always been good with numbers and alright at a couple of other subjects, but it was more like a ‘jack-of-all-trades-master-of-none’ sort of situation.

But yet, there still didn’t seem to be anything that truly made me special or stand out from the rest of my classmates.  And as I got older, my ‘good grades’ became average as others started to find their footing and I seemingly stagnated.

One thing I’d always had an interest in was the arts, specifically music and theatre.  We all dreamed of being famous as kids, right?  I was no different.

As we needed an ‘Arts’ credit at our school, my parents begrudgingly let me take a music class.  I really enjoyed it and got a decent enough grade, so I ended up finding a way to take music class each year and joined the school’s concert band.  My parents weren’t thrilled by this, and wouldn’t even let me practice in the house when they were home.

I’d also fancied a turn on the stage, despite my total shyness, so I got involved in the yearly school plays.  My parents wouldn’t let me take the offered drama class, claiming it was a frivolous class.  But somehow I did end up snagging myself a small role in three out of the four productions I’d auditioned for.

Once again, just like the music, this was just something I was ‘ok’ at but I at least enjoyed it.

As we were getting ready for a production of ‘Count Dracula’ one year, there was a conversation I had with the play’s director (the drama teacher) that has always stuck with me.  I was playing one of the asylum attendants who got to carry Renfrew’s bloodied corpse off stage for all to see.  Not a big part, but I at least got a few lines.

I think we were chatting about how much I enjoyed being part of the plays each year, and he said something to the affect of ‘You’ll be lucky to just be a bit, supporting player.  I don’t ever see you being a lead in a show,’ referencing any possibly future I might have in theatre.

For an insecure, overweight teen who was struggling to find himself, that hurt.  This was someone I looked up to and, as my teacher, he probably should have been more encouraging or at least a bit more tactful.  Even if being an actor was more of a pipe dream than anything.

The main reason that comment stuck with me was due to how it made me feel, and it subconsciously became an influencer over other aspects of my life.

It basically was a blow to an already fragile self-confidence. For a kid who didn’t feel like they fit in, never felt good enough, or masculine enough (hadn’t even started coming out at this point…), this was yet another person seemingly telling him they’d never be anything more than mediocre at best.

Yeah… ok.  So even as a teen I would over-think things.  Sue me.  LOL

Now, almost 30 years later, I still sometimes feel like that insecure, introverted, uncertain chubby kid who doesn’t feel like they fit in.  And I’m still trying to find my niche in the world, something that gets me excited to get out of bed every day.

Something that’s going to light a fire in my belly and let me show my passion to the world.

Maybe one of these days…

Nine Months Later…

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Nine months later…

That’s how long ago since I last posted on this site.  Since I decided I needed to take a break, especially as I hadn’t posted much over the course of last summer.

I figured it was the best thing to do.  I was clearly ‘too busy’ with life or work or whatever to keep things going regularly.  I’d felt that I needed to concentrate on other things at the time, instead of spending it writing on here.

Or perhaps I felt I didn’t need this platform any more, be it as an online journal of sorts to ‘talk’ my way through some issue I was having.  Or as a way to showcase my writing.

Or that I’d lost my ‘voice’.

And it was all a load of bullshit.  Excuses, the lot of them.

Yes, work had become a hell of a lot busier and exhausting, which just ended up being an excuse why I’d pulled away from the world.

Why I hadn’t spoken to or seen any of my friends in months.

Why I wasn’t writing anymore.

Why I hadn’t been getting through my (work authorised) online course.

Why I’d started smoking again and gained even more weight.

Why I started a downward spiral into loneliness and depressive behaviours that fed into my feelings of unworthiness.

Why, for all intents and purposes, it basically seemed like I was giving up on life.

And you know what?  I think I was in a way.

I’d convinced myself that nobody wanted to hang out with me, so why bother even trying to reach out to anyone.

That even less people would want to date me, so what was the point of trying to maintain any sort of positive self-image.

That I was going to continue to be stuck in my dead-end job until they forced me out or I died.. whichever came first.

Cheery thoughts, huh?

That’s where I’ve been over the past nine months, more or less.  Some days are better than others, but then there are the ones that just make me want to curl up in a ball and cry.

Or the days that make me hate the world and everyone in it for how I seem to feel like I’m ‘treated’.  But at the same time, I still wished there was just one person by myself willing to comfort me as I battled my way out of the darkness.

Life hasn’t been a complete barrage of doom and gloom for me these past none months.

I’ve gone on a few holidays (as usual), some better than others.  There’s been time spent with friends, and time spent alone.  There’s been laughs and tears.  There’s been lots (LOTS) of good food and some not so good food.

And through it all, I’d felt like something was missing from my life.  That there had to be something that could allow me to focus all this anger, sadness, joy, ennui, confusion, and a million other emotions.

That there was a passion missing from my life that everyone else (seemingly) all appeared to possess.

Was that this blog?  My writing?  My unfinished novel and story ideas that I haven’t touched in about a year?

I honestly don’t know.  And I don’t know if this is my return to my blog or not.

I just know that I felt like writing today for the first time in a very long time.

And it felt great.

London Attacks – The Aftermath

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Seven people have been killed in central London after three men drove a van into pedestrians on London Bridge and launched a knife attack on people enjoying a Saturday night out in pubs and restaurants around Borough Market.

Source: BBC News

http://www.bbc.co.uk/news/uk-england-london-40147164

It’s a scary world we live in these days.

Last night I was snuggled up on my sofa watching a cheesy movie on Netflix when I started to see reports on Facebook about an attack at London Bridge.  What the police have now labelled a terrorist attack, and was quite similar to the on Westminster Bridge several months back.

I read what I could about it, which wasn’t much at the time, until suddenly there were reports of a second attack (by the same men) in Borough Market, which is right by London Bridge.  Reports of men running around stabbing innocent people as they enjoy a usual Saturday night out in the pubs.

By this time, the news-wires were ablaze of different reports and sightings, and Facebook seemed to be filling with statuses asking if people were ok.

And then about almost 2 hours after the initial attacks at London Bridge, there were reports of a possible third attack in Vauxhall (which isn’t anywhere near the first two) … but in the end this turned out to just be a false alarm as it was ‘just a stabbing’ (if there is such a thing..).

What I found scary is a lot of people I know go out in Vauxhall all the time, and many of them were at Royal Vauxhall Tavern for the usual Saturday night frivolities. Even though it was deemed to not be part of the attacks at London Bridge, there was still a bit of a lock-down at the time in the club to ensure everyone’s safety.

And of course, this does hit somewhat close to home for me as Vauxhall was my old neighbourhood.  I’d lived in the area for almost 5 years and loved (almost) every moment of it.  In fact, I only moved out of the area because I couldn’t afford it anymore.

Of course last night the emotions were flowing quite freely as I read the various news reports about the incidents .. and thought it somewhat sad that the Vauxhall situation was dropped from the news as soon as it was determined to not be part of the terrorist attack.  Regardless of whether it was or not, someone potentially lost their life and that should never be trivialised.

Anyway.. the whole point of these terrorist groups attacking cities like London, Manchester and any number of other cities around the world, is to incite fear and distrust amongst those who live there.  There have been tweets from a certain world ‘leader’ trying to use this latest attack to gain momentum for his travel bans… and that’s just sick.

But as scary as it seemed last night, today just feels like another day living in the big wide world.  And that is a damn GOOD thing.  We can’t allow these religious zealots to make us feel afraid to leave our homes, or to live our lives as we normally would.  We can’t allow them to make us feel bad because of where we live or how we live our lives.

Some may think that’s being callous and inconsiderate to those who did lose their lives or were injured in last night’s attacks, but it isn’t really.  Nobody is saying to forget what happened or act like it never did, because that would be foolish.  We’re not going to pretend it never existed.

Instead, we’re going to use this to bolster our resolve to not give into the terror.  To be more aware of our surroundings, and be alert to those who may want to do us harm.  To maintain our way of life without allowing the terrorists to install bigotry or racism against our fellow Britons, regardless of what faith they may maintain.

What it also does is puts certain things in our lives into a different perspective, and those worries or insecurities from yesterday just seem frivolous.  And last night’s knee-jerk reaction that maybe it was time to leave London now seems silly in the light of day.

I count myself quite lucky that I was nowhere near all of the insanity last night, and that nobody I’m aware of was directly affected by it.  But it doesn’t mean that I’m not peripherally affected by it, same as everyone else who lives in this city.

This is the world we live in, and no matter where you go, things like this will still happen.  So instead of running and hiding, it’s all about getting back out there and continuing to enjoy life as it happens.

Don’t give in to the terror.

http://www.bbc.co.uk/news/uk-40148737

I’m Feeling Stressed…

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I hate feeling stressed.  It’s an awful feeling and it makes me want to do things I know I shouldn’t – like go off my diet or start smoking again. Neither of which I want to do.

But somethings lately have just been bugging me, and I wish I could exorcise these feelings and get back to working towards a more positive and healthy ‘me’.

Part of all this could be the ‘post-holiday blues’.. since I returned from Gran Canaria a few weeks ago, I’ve been feeling quite ‘blah’ and the typically grey UK weather hasn’t helped any either.

I swear my tan faded the moment I stepped off the plane.  LOL

Not to mention my diet seems to have stalled a bit since I returned.  I seem to eat fairly healthy throughout the day, but once I get home it’s like I have no will power.. and that’s with me rarely buying anything snack-like.

But it’s not like I don’t already have a weekend to Madrid planned in a couple week’s time.  Plus I’m considering going to Naples and Pompeii in early July as a late birthday trip… so I don’t think it’s that.

Perhaps it’s the impending visit from my landlord next weekend and that he’s staying at the flat for about a month – he lives in Belgium but occasionally has to come to London for work so he’s kept a bedroom for himself.

He’s not a bad guy but I don’t feel completely relaxed or comfortable having people over when he’s there.  He knows I’m gay and has said he doesn’t care if I have someone over, but it’s a comfort thing.

But to be honest, him visiting is more of an inconvenience than anything.. and just means I need to make sure I’m wearing clothes when I leave my bedroom.  LOL

Ok… Let’s just face the elephant in the room and address the true source of my current stress load – it’s work.  It was slightly stressful before my holidays and it’s just gotten worse since.

Basically, it was decided last year to bring in a new computer system for our division, and my colleague was jointly tasked with assisting the developers to build it so it was ‘fit for purpose’.  I wasn’t assigned the task at the time as I was expected to be on holidays during the original launch period (end of June 2016).

But since she’s not a technical person and isn’t that good with implementing processes, things kind of went to shit.  Especially as she spent most of her time flirting with the programmer when he’d visit our offices to work on the program together.

Anyway, things kept getting pushed farther and farther back until finally it was realised that what had been build was absolute crap, and it had to start almost from scratch again… so the project was reassigned to someone at the other office and she gotten things done.

And then suddenly things for our part of the division got dropped into my lap a few months back, and I had to get our part up and running via systems testing.  Despite not knowing anything about the program really.

So there I was just before my holidays having to teach myself a program that wasn’t working completely, and go back and forth with the developers to try to mold how things work somewhat.

But as with anything in life, I wasn’t even asked if I wanted to do this.  I was just expected to ‘fix it’ as I’m seen as the ‘computer guy’.  And they’ve now decided that I’ll be our new system’s ‘expert’, meaning any problems people have they’ll come to me for it instead of the developers.

Oh joy… lucky me.

Meanwhile, here we are several weeks after the program launched and my department is the only one who can’t even use it because the developers haven’t loaded our correct rates yet.  The rest of the department is fine for the most part, and they can get things done.  But we can’t.

Like I said to one of our supervisors this morning, it’s like our little department is the forgotten step-child.  And no matter how much I chase things up, it’s like I’m talking to a brick wall.

*Sigh*.. As much as I could say I don’t feel appreciated in my current job, I know that’s not completely correct.  I do get messages of thanks or notes of appreciation from the bosses, but it’s almost to the point where it’s expected that I’ll just get things done.  And quickly and efficiently as well.

I’ve been told that I’m getting another (very small) raise – the 2nd in the last 6 months or so – which is great, but I’ll believe it when I have the signed paperwork in front of me.

I do wonder why I’m still with this company after almost 3 years.  I’m pretty sure I could potentially get more money at other companies, but yet I haven’t been looking around at all.

It’s partly because this office is so convenient to where I’m living (I can literally walk home in just under 45 minutes), but also because I know if I leave this job right now I’ll have to pay them money..

They’re paying for my PRINCE2 certification, and part of the agreement is if I left within 2 years of starting the course then I’ll have to pay back a certain percentage of the costs (standard for most companies these days..).

But is that worth sticking around this place for another 2 years?  Of continuing to feeling used and pushed to do more and more?

I suppose only time will tell.. until then, I need to get studying.  The certification isn’t going to complete itself.

Friendship can be Fleeting

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Some friends come, some friends go.  And some friends are there for the long haul.  But sometimes, no matter what you do, the friendship may end.  It could be due to some toxic behaviour from one of you, or it could be a change in one of your lives.

It’s not a matter of loving each other any less, but being willing to understand when a friendship is at it’s end.  Or even recognising when it’s already over and not worth your time to try and save.

Regardless of how a friendship ends, it can sometimes really hurt and be confusing.  So here are a few things to look out for when that fleeting friendship is actually dying a slow death…

It’s exhausting

Spending time with your friends should be fun, exciting, and make you look forward to seeing them again, even when things aren’t going so well.  But if you find you’re coming away from seeing a friend constantly drained, emotionally and physically, it could be that they’re sucking the life right out of you.

Some friends are just emotional vampires, and any time spent together is all about them or their problems.  These people are needy and will latch onto anyone who’ll give them any attention.

Jealous of your happy

Whenever something good is happening in your life, one of the first things anyone wants to do is to share it with their friends.  We all enjoy sharing our happy moments alongside all the rest of it, and a true friend should be happy when something goes well for you, regardless of what is going on in their life.

But if that friend is continually trying to bring you down or is expressing jealousy because their life isn’t going as well as yours, then that’s not someone you want in your corner.  A solid friend should be a cheerleader for your accomplishments (and vice versa) without any thought about their own issues.

Always one-sided

Best_FriendsTruly good friends will always be there for each other through the thick and thin.  They’ll be their cheerleader, a shoulder to cry on, someone they can vent to, and ultimately, their rock.  We all go through tough periods and it’s important to have the right support when you’re going through a bad patch.

But if you find that you’re always listening to your friend’s issues and they aren’t letting you get a word in about what’s going on with you, then perhaps you need to let that selfish friend go.  Same goes if they never ask what’s going on with you (because they’re too busy talking about themselves), or don’t seem to even register what you do say (cause they’re not really listening).

Friendships may teeter back and forth, but ultimately it needs to truly be two-sided.

They put you down

All friends tend to roast each other to an extent.  It’s playful and always meant in good humour, never anything malicious or to purposely put someone down.  But sadly there are those out there who’ll always have something negative to say about you to bring you down.  Perhaps it makes them feel better about themselves, but regardless of why they do it, it’s toxic and they’re a friend you shouldn’t want to keep.

True friends always have your best interest at heart.

Mooches will always mooch

truly caresWe all have that friend who never seems to have any money on them to pay for drinks or dinner, or they say they’ll pay you back for those concert tickets but you never hear another word about it.  It’s one thing if it happens on occasion, but when it’s all the time it can become quite annoying to be chasing after them.

These people may not mean anything bad by it, and sometimes they don’t even realise they’ve done it.  But in the end you can only take so much of these flighty, forgetful friends.  And unfortunately, good luck getting your money back.

They’re overly demanding

It’s one thing to be a bit needy on occasion during a rough patch, but it’s completely different when you try to fully monopolise a friend’s time to the point where they can’t maintain other friendships or relationships.

When a friend is overly possessive, it generally means they’re insecure about your friendship and they’ll allow their jealousy to show.  Some may get so attached that they’ll freak out at the thought of you having other friends (let alone a relationship), and they could even try to sabotage things.

Best thing to do – run away.  Now.

Life moves on

Sometimes a friendship will end solely because life has changed for one or both of you.  People will change and grow over time, or perhaps one of your interests have changed.  It may suck when it happens, but it’s not like there’s a particular thing you can blame it on, as it just happens.  Some people just drift apart.

A lot of the time when this happens, one or both of you will be singing the hymn “We need to catch up soon!”, but it never really happens.  It could be that one of you has found a new social circle, or there’s a new relationship that’s occupying their time, or you no longer live near each other.  It’s just life really.

bad-friends-pic-3It’s ok to feel sad or confused when a friendship ends, but allow yourself the time to get past it.  Understand what changed and then move on.  There is no point dwelling on something that has already happened and can’t be changed.

This post has been influenced by – http://www.thelist.com/17938/tell-friendship/