Exhale.

How we view ourselves is different from how others view us, isn’t it? We all live in a world where everyone likes what they like. Different food, different hobbies, different people, just how it should be.

Take good looking people for example. Does it matter how physically attractive someone is, if they don’t appreciate your personality? Everyone might think differently, because what you might find to be attractive is different from what someone else will find to be attractive. Also, your personality can make you more or less likeable, can’t it? Your personality, your outlook on life, your sense of humour are a massive part of what attracts someone to you. Isn’t compatibility based on how you and your partner think about each other are as a human being?

There are so many girls that are out of my league, no question. When you tell yourself that someone is out of your league, you begin believing it, don’t you? You ask someone out for dinner or drinks and they say no. It sucks. When someone turns us down, it’s always because of self doubt. We think that we’re not good enough in any facet of our life to hold onto this person’s attention. Maybe we’re not attractive enough.

Even when the situation is one that we don’t think we can control, don’t we all put people into a category? Too pretty. Too handsome. Not pretty enough. Not handsome enough. It’s incredibly judgemental but haven’t all of us seen two people together as a couple and wondered, “How the hell did they end up together?” If we think that way, aren’t we all contributing to a problem in life that we really don’t need? Who decides who is out of your league? Just you, right? As well as everyone else perhaps?

Doesn’t it all boil down to the fact that a lot of us think that physical beauty is the most important thing when we look for someone new? Are we all that predictable? Hopefully not. Aren’t we hurting our own self-perception though when we think that way? It’s hard to be vulnerable with anyone, especially if you think that someone will reject you. If you give into that fear, aren’t you actually missing out on some really great experiences. You’ll never know.

Before you even decide who is in your league or not, don’t you evaluate yourself? The mirror is an unforgiving mistress. Am I a six out of ten? Maybe a seven? A four? Who fucking knows if you don’t? What if someone else thinks that you’re a nine? Will I even give them the chance to tell me? We’re our own worst critic, and with that, comes self doubt. When we’re insecure, our self-esteem goes through the floor. When we think like that, how shit would it be if the person you liked, decided to like you back and then you thought that you weren’t a match because you thought that they were better than you? Don’t you trust yourself to have an interest in someone with similar qualities to yourself? It’s tough though.

Don’t we need to stop forming daft opinions based on how beautiful someone’s eyes are, how much the shape of their lips make us smile, how much their eyes sparkle when we look at them? No, would probably be the right answer, but all of those things are still important though, aren’t they?

The thing is, not everyone is like you or me. We all have a different idea about who we want as our significant other. Perhaps the point is that someone’s looks shouldn’t hold any more value than what their personality does. Their mind is more important than how they look or how their body is surely?

Shouldn’t we all stop buying into ideas about who we should see and about who should be interested in wanting to be with us? Remind yourself of this as regularly as you can. Also, remind yourself that no one is out of your league either.

At first, I thought people who were incredibly attractive were out of my league. You’d think once I realised that not everything is about looks, my thoughts wouldn’t be as shallow. It’s not that transparent though. I believed that if someone was smarter than me, or funnier than me, that they too were out of my league. Needless to say, I was wrong.

Aren’t the thoughts of our relationship goals being upset, by knowing that the other person is hotter, and being far more attractive than we are? Intimacy is traded for vulnerability. Feelings can go and fuck themselves at times.

Ironically, personality is such a big factor, so knocking back a person because of how they look could make you lose out on a person who could be great for you, if you just got to know them. On the flip side they might be totally wrong for you. How do you know until you try though?

No risk, no reward, right? If you like someone, you might as well try. Rejection? A definite possibility. Thing is though, you also might find that someone that you never thought would find you attractive actually likes you a lot. You need to ask though, or you need to answer the question if it ever comes. Have some courage.

She asked me to go for dinner. I haven’t said yes or no yet, I’m conflicted. She’s far too pretty and I’m average at best. She’s cute, she’s hilarious and she’s so self aware, how the hell am I ever going to match up to her? She’s out of my league.

We’re not out of touch but are we out of time?

@TheSamMcLeod

Remember when?

A rollercoaster of emotions were spinning inside my head. Anger. Hurt. Relief. Wanting her. She was the only person in the world that I wanted to see in that moment. The trouble was that she was also the last person in the world that I wanted to see. Conflicted emotions and feelings. Fuck them.

Conflict. There’s always some conflict in every relationship. Doesn’t everyone feel lonely or trapped sometimes? It’s not always rainbows, sunshine and unicorns, but sometimes all you need is a little attention.

Eventually, maybe when you feel more in love with your memories of someone, rather than the person that you were with is when you know that things are over? One minute we were inseparable, the next, I was blocked on Facebook, Instagram and Twitter.

People fall out of love with each other every day, and whilst it might be the saddest thing that a couple can do to each other, doesn’t it just mean that they’ve both grown too tired to try any more? I wasn’t too scared to keep trying but I knew that she was slowly letting go. I knew that she was growing less and less in love with me every day. Love never really dies all at once, does it? Whilst it’s not tangible, you know that you can almost see it fading away, one day at a time. Maybe one of the hardest decisions you’ll ever make is choosing to try harder or walk away.

It’s hard to love someone to the point where you don’t even understand yourself. It’s okay for you not to get it, because I don’t get it. It’s just there, it was there for a long time. When you find love and someone like that, you don’t want to give any of it up. It’s not always your choice though, is it? Hopefully at some point, you’ll be able to give your love to someone else. Fingers crossed. A relationship is almost like a house. When a lightbulb burns out, you don’t go and buy a new house. You replace the lightbulb. Sometimes we lose, sometimes we win. Shouldn’t we always keep playing though? Moving on is a process. You win, you lose, you cry, you smile, you learn not to make the same mistakes. You try, you fuck things up, but you keep trying. What if the worst in you doesn’t want to work on things though?

I didn’t choose to fall in love with her but it was worth almost every second of it. She chose to stop loving me though at a time when I didn’t do anything wrong. We all know that we won’t always make the right decisions. We’ll all royally fuck things up sometimes. Maybe this is a decision that she regrets? I haven’t asked her, and I will never ask her. The thing is, it’s almost like something happens inside the person that you love. They’ve had enough, and that the way the your relationship has been going is no longer worth the effort. It’s okay, it’s their truth, so it’s the truth, isn’t it? Your perception is your reality? I’m not in love with you now but now sometimes I wish I was. Sometimes.

The couples that will be together for as long as they want to be, are the ones who go through everything that’s meant to tear them apart, to divide them. It just makes them stronger, right? Isn’t that what we all want? Now and again though, two people need to be apart for a while to realise how much they need to be together. I wish those people luck, I won’t be one of them. You’ll know when a relationship is right for you, won’t you? It’ll make your life better, not complicate it more than it already is.

Certain dates can be powder kegs for your emotions. An anniversary, a birthday. Even if you know you have to move on, they don’t make it any easier. Your mind drifts towards that person at times, on that day. The occasional thought of you will cross my mind, but it’ll be bittersweet.

Once you move on, you try to forget who hurt you in the past, but don’t you always remember what your experiences with them taught you? If it meant that you became a person who held onto grudges, someone that wanted to seek revenge, and not forgive or show compassion, then did you really learn anything? Your heart might say yes, but your head will say no. Won’t it?

The past is just that though. It can’t hurt you anymore unless you let it. I guess we all need to remember that.

You should never run from the people who you want. You should fight for them. They’re in your corner for everything that life throws at you until they’re not.There’s a cost, there’s a risk but that’s what you sign up for when you enter a relationship. Some work out, some don’t, sadly. I miss her. Sometimes.

Do I want to try again?

The best of me wants to love you, but the worst in me doesn’t want to.

@TheSamMcLeod

You elevate the life in me.

Trust, ironically is hard for me to trust. That’s why my circle of friends is small. I’m a bit of a social hand grenade when it comes to making new friends.

At least I know that, but I know it’s on me. Is there anything better than having friends though, keeping those special people in your life? You should never lose a chance to make new ones, right?

True friends are the people who make you smile every single time that you’re in touch with with them, remotely or in person. New friends can often have a better time together than old friends, can’t they? It’s that excitement of when you start a new relationship, isn’t it?

If you’re a decent human being, then you should kind to everyone, but you want to choose the best people to be your friends, don’t you? No point in choosing them otherwise. Assuming that they choose you back or that they accept your friendship in the first place.

It’s nigh on impossible for you to know which of the strangers you’re going to meet that’ll become your friend. Being polite to everyone is a pretty good rule to live your life by though. You don’t want to be careless with other people’s hearts and you shouldn’t put up with people who are careless with your heart.

It can be tough however. A lot of us are closed doors, we can’t just open up when we’re asked to. Some of us aren’t pieces of paper, you can’t unfold us and find out what you need to know. Aren’t there always parts of us that we want to close off from the world? Bits of us that we can’t even touch ourself because they’re too painful. Too tough, right? Now and again though, you meet someone who instantly gets you. Someone who illuminates the in-between.

What is the meaning of a good friendship? How significant it is in your life? They can give us comfort when we need it, can’t they? The Japanese have a word, kenzoku, which when translated, means family. It implies the deepest connection of a friendship. Pretty cool.

It’s not always that easy though. Good people come, good people go, bad people come, bad people go, it’s just life. You always know when something comes to an end, don’t you? It’s simple though once you get past your heart hurting. When you let certain people and memories go, it just means that you’re making some room for other people and other memories to take their place. You need to let some people go, to detach yourself from their life. Before a new chapter begins, you tell yourself that the old one needs to end.

Regardless of where about in the world, your new friends live in relation to you, you automatically understand that there are precious few you that you should hold onto. You work hard to bridge the gap in geography and time initially but then it becomes second nature, you make your friendship work. Sometimes it’s easier than that, things just click and a random conversation leads to a new friend. Someone that you can tell anything to. Someone who can tell you anything that they feel that they want to. A new friend.

Happiness with your friends is all you want surely? Those smiles of new friends can help if you’re feeling down. You would do the same for them though and hopefully you pull each other through if either of you is having a bad day. You can accept inalienable truths from a good friend, sometimes it might be what you need.

You can take advice from anyone but sometimes it’s that new friend who can help you see what you need to.

It was random how she came along. Just someone reaching out to someone else. That first contact meant that other contact followed. A conversation started. It turns out we have a lot of things in common. Sport, music, our sense of humour. Don’t forget tacos. It’s a new friendship and it’s pretty cool. We’re in touch when each of us wants to be. Hours or days could go by with silence and that’s fine. We’ll converse back and forth for ages and that’s fine too. I sleep when I need to, she sleeps when she needs to. One of us will be awake whilst the other sleeps and we just go about our day or night. We’re just friends but again, that’s pretty cool.

It’s amazing how easy it is for things to change in your life. You think your day will be the same and then you wind up somewhere new. It’s a new friend, a new boyfriend or girlfriend, maybe a breakup. Maybe at the same time, each moment we experience has another thousand moments underneath that make it looks different. Make a new friend, what’s the worst that could happen?

My day, my experience was meeting someone new that makes my days better.

@TheSamMcLeod

I don’t know why you wonder why?

Isn’t being all about yourself, the surest way that you’ll end up being all by yourself?

Her ego could stretch the shit out of the universe. The problem was with it though that it appeared to have no end. One day she asked him to admit that the majority of things in his life were about her. They weren’t, he told her that and she didn’t like it. They were doomed from the beginning, although he didn’t know it at the time. That person that makes you laugh when no one else in the world can. You need to find them, don’t you? He thought it was her but it wasn’t. He realised that he needed to fall in love with his own heart because she wasn’t opening up her heart to him.

He thought that maybe he just needed to relax, trust her and that everything would be okay. He was no Robin Hood though, he was so wide of the mark.

When we were kids, we used to trust everything that we were told. Somewhere down the line, we stopped. We questioned things. He finally questioned whether or not she was a good idea and concluded that she wasn’t.

The brain. Who knows why it believes what it believes? Neurons and synapses? Maybe it’s your heart that directly impacts what your brain thinks. 99% of the time, he wanted to believe her and the things that she said but he knew that they weren’t all true. That other 1%? It was full of hope. Idiot.

She didn’t want to know how he felt, yet, she wanted him to know everything that she felt. Selfish, right? She was mesmerising and heartbreaking all at the same time. She thought that she was being interesting to him, in every minute of every day, when in reality, she was only being interesting to herself.

They both ended up where they are. Part of him still thinks that he didn’t make a mistake about her when they met, about who she was, about who she is. He saw the heartbreak coming though but it took him a while to get out of the way.

She’s not all bad, she has a fire that burns bright. There is a heart beating behind her craziness, it’s in there somewhere. She is almost perfect. Almost. No matter how much you try to contain a fire though, won’t it always burn the way that it wants to?

He now can’t understand what hurts more, missing her, or pretending not to. He can’t tell her though, that would only stoke her ego.

She was great in parts but she wasn’t the person that he could shape his life around. He couldn’t take the chance in the end. He never ever took her for granted though, it was nigh on impossible to do so. His own pride wouldn’t allow it, call it male stubbornness. Yet, there they were, imploding right in front of each other. Evel Knievel couldn’t jump the gap between the two of them now. It’s not your job to try and change someone though, is it? Even if you could, you can’t shape someone that has no shape.

It’s alright though, isn’t it? It’s certainly okay to her because it’s about her ego. Most of the time, perhaps all of the time, it’s got to be about her. Does she even know that’s why she’s there where she is and he’s not? He would have been there though. In a fucking heartbeat. Guess what fucked it? How do you even manage to give yourself permission to think that you’re better than everyone else?

Everything became a competition and only one of them could win. It wasn’t him, he failed quite spectacularly but he’s okay about it now. Or at least he thinks he is.

Having gone through the relationship with her, it changed his outlook. He’s more aware of how he treats other people now. He has his own ego but it’s not like the world owes him anything, not like how she is. We all make assumptions, we all have biases, we all have our own ego. It’s just the levels that are different, isn’t it?

She might have been the love of his life but now neither of them will ever know. She was the one when he was no one. Now, she’s nothing. It doesn’t even bother her. Her fucking ego.

He thought that he was clever enough to make whatever decisions he wanted to make but she filled him full of doubt at the end. It turns out that meeting her and sharing the things they did has made him better though. Even although she was bad for him, she made him better for whoever comes along next.

He learned not to allow her ego and insecurities to stop him growing, to stop him doing the things that he wanted so she clearly isn’t all bad. If you can meet someone and they make you better, then it’s a positive experience, I guess.

The thing is though, when you have a love affair with yourself, you still sleep alone at night.

And you wonder why, no one’s by your side?

@TheSamMcLeod

Maybe you just need a friend.

A big part of depression is feeling alone, even if you’re in a room full of people. You can be surrounded, but if you don’t feel like you can talk to anyone, you might as well not be there because you’re on your own. Loneliness can feel bad and good at the same time though, can’t it?

You don’t want to do anything, you don’t even want to wake up because you’ll just be expected to see the day through. It’s no way to live your life.

Having a good day day can be tough sometimes. It’s about finding as many beautiful moments in your day, isn’t it? What happens though if trying to do that for 24 hours is just too much to ask?

Sometimes, all you can do is just stay in bed, and try to sleep before you begin to fall apart. Again and again. You don’t want to crumble but you can’t control it. Sometimes sadness isn’t audible, no one hears it.

A lot of the time, the nights aren’t much better. Those feelings that wash over you as you’re in bed, staring at the ceiling. Replaying in your head all of those things you didn’t get right. Regret has never been a cure for insomnia but it’s tough. You might cry until your eyes close, so eventually you manage to fall asleep. You wake up though and you remember. It starts again. You don’t want to see a single person. You’re in bed with the blinds or curtains closed. Whatever happened to you is your own fault, isn’t it? You’re drowning. No point in being alive any more, you might as well be dead.

Can’t it be difficult sometimes to see the incredible person that you are? Maybe all that you need to know is that someone would miss you if you weren’t around. Sometimes all you want is for someone to wrap their heart around you. Life. It’s about making a mark on the tapestry on someone or something, isn’t it?

One day someone is going to walk into your life and they’re going to need you to love them. Maybe that’s what love comes down to. You have someone who cares enough to devote themself to you so that you spark yourself back into normality. Can you hang on? Perhaps all you want to be is the best version of yourself for that special boy or girl.

Some people don’t and won’t ever understand how you might be feeling unless you tell them. How desperate you are to have someone to tell you that they love you and that they wouldn’t change you for the world?

You can look at someone but not see them for what they really are. You can take or judge someone at face value, but you can be so wrong, can’t you? Everyone has secrets. Sometimes it’s those secrets that burn inside of you that keep you going. There will be wounds that never show on your body that are deeper and that will cause more pain than any cut you have that ever bleeds. Just life, right? Believe that someone else is undergoing the same battles that you might be experiencing.

For a while, hopefully a short while, you can tell yourself that you’ve strayed off of the path where it is that you want to go. You’ll find your way back to where you want to go, won’t you? Night comes though and the struggles start again. You don’t to be with people and you don’t want to be alone. Fucking hell.

Is depression a war that you can win? You’d hope so but it’s a battle you fight every day. You never stop, never get to rest. It’s one messy thing after another.

Your judgement is constantly questioned by the people you know, but it’s just something that you have to deal with. Breaking down doesn’t mean that your life is done. A day comes when you’re finally in touch with the bad things going on in your life. You can cope, you get it. You can accept it eventually.

Ever wonder how the darkness wins? Better not to think about it, right? Who the hell wants the darkness to win?

Happiness is an ongoing battle, a complete struggle, a never-ending fight.

In a strange way, you can fall in love with your depression. You can love it because you think it was all that you had or have. Depression isn’t the part of your character that makes you matter. Don’t think so little of yourself. Don’t feel that you have little to offer the world because you do. You matter. Mental health matters.

As clumsy as you’ve been, there’s no one laughing.

@TheSamMcLeod

Everything is blurry.

We have hands that barely ever touched. We have lips that almost never met. We never really had a chance, did we?

We are absolutely failing.

Lots of things can be fixed. Sometimes though, a relationship between two people can’t be fixed, because it shouldn’t be. If neither of you are making the effort, then the penny begins to drop. Arguments happen again and again. Silences become more frequent. Whisper screaming at each other. That’s when you know it’s over. As soon as you start thinking about the beginning of the end, it’s the end. It’s time for you to break away from the person that’s breaking you. A lot of people will break your heart during your life, but if you look at it positively, only one will be the worst. You can love someone to the point where no one understands. It doesn’t matter though if no one gets it, as long as you get it. When you find something like that, you don’t want to let it go. Sometimes though you have to.

Breaking up is a natural thing when you’re trying to work out what it is that you want in your life. If you’re with someone who isn’t aligned with your thinking, did you even have a chance from the start? Feelings have that way of shaking us awake and helping us see what we’re willing to settle for, against what it is that we really want. Turns out that not being together any more might be a good thing. For both people.

Moving on is easier than staying moved on though, isn’t it?

It’s not the actual breaking up that prevents you from getting back together again, even if that’s what you both want. It’s because little pieces of you both get lost. The whole shape of your relationship, the whole dynamic has changed. Too little, too late. The chemistry wasn’t in doubt but the timing was everything. Sigh.

Whilst a lot of it was good, we ruined each other for a while by being together and we partly destroyed each other’s dreams. It wasn’t intentional, no hurt was meant, it just happened.

Three words said. Eight letters, five vowels and three consonants. I love you. It was the start of something beautiful but it was also the start of a slippery slope. Much later, the words changed. Two words, seven letters, three vowels and four consonants. It’s over. Twenty six letters in the alphabet, and now you’ll always be the 24th.

If you have to wonder if someone loves you and wants to be with you, chances are they don’t. It shouldn’t be that complicated, should it? You shouldn’t have to waste time waiting and wondering. Why spend your incredibly precious hours, dreaming or thinking of someone that doesn’t want to be with you? They can’t be that amazing, certainly not if they’re willing to play games with your heart.

The thing with breaking up is that person isn’t there any more, but the memories have a way of staying around.

Don’t listen to songs that you used to listen to together, at least not straight away. Go to bed for as long as you can or want, cry until the tears stop. Delete their number immediately. Book a few days away somewhere. Steer clear of photos of you both, how can that end well? Forgive yourself for being foolish for putting your trust in someone that didn’t reciprocate it. Continue to breathe, continue to smile.

Sometimes, something will happen and the memories will come flooding back. A song will appear on shuffle or a film might pop up on your television, and you’ll wonder what they’re up to. You have no way of knowing but you think what you think at the time. You could always email, text or pick up the phone but then they’ll know that you’re thinking of him or her. Not a good idea, right?

You never want them to know you’re thinking of them, so as tough as it might be, you stop yourself. Before long, the memories start to fade, don’t they? A day will come when you realise that you can’t quite remember how they smelled or the exact colour of their eyes. Some people will tell you that a day will come when you just forget that person altogether, but that’s bullshit, isn’t it? You may well replace old memories with new ones, and move on with your life but can you ever really forget?

If they get in touch after a while to tell you that they’ve missed you though, isn’t the perfect response to tell them that you missed yourself too?

Things will be okay. Turbulent, then calm.

@TheSamMcLeod

Everybody dies but not everybody lives.

Decisions, decisions. Buy ice cream or not? Pretty easy. Have a beer tonight or not? Again, not too difficult to choose. How about moving across the world to be with someone? How about deciding to marry someone? How about deciding to have children with someone? Some decisions are more important than others, aren’t they?

Isn’t the rule that whatever seems to be a massive and potentially life-changing decision, the less it seems like a decision at all? Perhaps the worst part of it is that other people can make life-changing decisions for you. Just life, I guess.

Is it easier if you ask yourself the question? If you’re going to though, you need to trust that you’ll be able do something with the answers, don’t you?

Maybe someone broke up with you, maybe you were the one who ended it. Still tough either way. Is it true that sometimes we need to be absolutely heartbroken by something, before we finally understand how bad it was for us? How about how good things might become?

Sometimes, something horrible in your life can occur in a split second that changes your life forever. You didn’t see it coming, how were you possibly to know?

The thing is that no matter how much planning you do, one tiny mis-step, one moment of a lack of concentration can end it all in an instant. Life, right?

You can plod through your life with nothing changing from one day, one week, one month, to the next. It doesn’t really matter how much you ask for something to shake you up, don’t you need to take control of it yourself?

Your world has changed. No one else might know anything about it but all of a sudden, your next heartbeat will be different to the last one. Deep breaths.

So what do you do now? You want things to be real, don’t you? Not for them just to be an idea that you have. How about a plan? How about deciding to do everything that you’ve ever wanted to do? A bucket list?

Bucket lists are supposed to be about doing things you’ve always dreamt about, not about making the wrong things in your life right.

Everyone surely has a path to follow that’s important to each of us. It’ll be different for every single one of us, of course, but isn’t it important to find that one reason to live and to appreciate the life that you have? It could be anything. What would be on your list?

Imagine going through the whole of your lifetime without laughter. How about laughing every day? Simple wishes.

It’s cheesy but don’t you need to seize the day before the sun sets every night? You’ll need to take a deep breath and almost take a blind leap of faith. Scary as shit. Let go of what is worthless, invest your time in the things that you want to do and the people that you care about. Everything important to you is precious, isn’t it? Holding them close because they won’t be here forever. The people as well as the moments.

Again, so what do you do? Dream a new dream, set another goal? Tomorrow, smile at a stranger and mean it. Fuck it, do it today.

If your dreams don’t scare you, are they big enough?

If things aren’t making sense or adding up in your life, isn’t it time to start subtracting? Is it true, is it helpful, is it inspiring, is it kind, is it necessary? If you answered yes to all five questions, then you know what to do. Everything that you’ve ever wanted. It might not always be easy but fuck, won’t it always be worth it? Make a list. I’ve just done it. Shouldn’t you be excited to try and give yourself everything that you’ve ever wanted in your life? Wise people will tell you that no one ever gets everything that they want, and whilst that’s a beautiful thing, isn’t it worth trying for all of those things?

Doing the things you love is like a good marriage. Once you get into it, it’s difficult to get out of and why the hell would you want to?

You let your success make your noise, don’t you? Maybe you will, maybe you won’t, worth a try at least. Maybe the little things you do in your life will become big things when you look back on them.

How about travel? Doesn’t it force you to trust strangers and to lose sight of everything that you thought you knew? You are constantly out of your comfort zone. You’re not au fait with everything in your life any more. All of your journeys will have secret destinations, won’t they?

Whether it’s travel related or not, you’ll have no idea where to leave from and and no clue about where you’ll end up going. Pretty cool.

Make a list of the things that you want to do and start ticking them off. No, you’re not lucky, you’re blessed.

@TheSamMcLeod