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

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

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

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

I walk away from most of these conversations inspired.

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

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

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

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

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

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Big girls do cry

by Berrak on June 3, 2015

Last night, I cried. It was unexpected. It was inevitable. It was necessary.

Ironically, it was after an incredibly fun night with my awesome friends. We’re in a mini golf league this summer, have I mentioned that? Last night was the first night. We drank beers, laughed and hit balls. Afterwards, we went for food and drinks. It was a good night. It was a great night.

Then I walked home. It was a full moon. It was a beautiful Seattle night, with the smell of the rain still lingering.

I came home, undressed, headed straight to bed – and started crying.

There’s been this loneliness creeping underneath the surface. This pain that I don’t talk about, and try not to think about.

My life is good, I remind myself daily.

I’m loved, my friends remind me.

I do good work, my coworkers tell me.

I’m not alone, but I am often lonely.

One of my best friends and I were having a conversation a couple of weeks ago and I teared up a little. We hadn’t had a one-on-one in a while. She reminded me that being independent and building the life I want can be, ironically, lonely.

That’s the way it goes.

Crying is good. It’s cleansing. I’m emotional – it’s part of the package.

The loneliness, though? I don’t know how to overcome it. It’s the biggest irony of my life. An ambivert with an independent soul that craves solitude to recharge – but also craves the intimacy provided by other people.

So, sometimes, I just cry myself to sleep.

The next day is always a little better, even if my heart is always heavy.

a good cry

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#Wanderlust

by Berrak on May 29, 2015

the world is my siren

If you could travel anywhere in the world right now, where would you go?

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Nyctophilia

by Berrak on May 14, 2015

In one of the stars I shall be living

I’ve always preferred the night to day. I spent much of my childhood looking up – at the clouds, but mostly seeking the stars during the day. When they came out at night, my inspiration was revived with them. I found escape in the night. In a house full of chaos, my favorite time was the night. When everyone went to sleep. When I was left alone with my thoughts, for better or worse.

When I moved out and moved into a room that was essentially the size of a closet in a house full of 4 other people, I waited until everyone went to sleep before tip-toeing downstairs with my laptop or book.

The night and I became best friends. Worst enemies. The quiet in the night became my confidante. The internet brought me friends in different time zones, hundreds of blogs to read when I got lonely because the world was too quiet and my demons too loud.

My writing flows the easiest in the quiet of the night. I sit here, with music in my headphones, my cat purring in my lap and my fingers flying across the keyboard. Yes, even alone in my own apartment, I use headphones. It’s how I get in my zone. It’s how I create. It’s my bubble.

Not every night is productive. Some nights, I can’t shut my brain off long enough to sleep, nor can I slow it down to pick out a single thought. Some nights, my anxiety drives me into a panic mode and all I can do is clean and organize. Some nights, the depression is so heavy that all I can do is lie there, staring at the TV, not even attempting to reach for my notebook.

The night and I have a complicated relationship – but it’s a reliable one. As an insomniac, I accept it fully. The nights I can actually go to sleep, my subconscious takes over and I wish for the sweet release the manic nights when I at least feel a little more in control.

I know it’s hard for my friends to grasp. I know that this may change drastically when I find a partner who will be by my side to calm those demons when my nightmares start to creep in. But I can’t deny the truth that the night is my most creative time. As a writer, I try really hard to get into the zone during the day, like a normal person. But the night calls to me like a siren.

“It’s just you and me,” whispers the night. Not a single distraction in the world. No phone calls, no meetings. No sunlight tempting me to come out and play. In the quiet of the darkness, I am free. I am loud. I am raw.

I cut the veins open and words bleed on to the page without interruption.

nyctophilia

 

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The One Where I Turned 30

April 13, 2015

Want to give me a belated birthday present? Go show Philanthropy Quest some support on Twitter and Facebook I always post my birthday posts on my birthday. Always. This year, though, I wasn’t sure how to approach it. I mean, it’s a big milestone, and I know it’s a big deal but I couldn’t exactly nail […]

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Do you believe in soul mates?

March 30, 2015

I’m an avid reader and when an opportunity comes up to read a book that’s outside of my preferred genre and topic, I’ll jump on it to expand my horizons. When I first began reading Soul Sessions, I wasn’t sure how I would feel about it at the end. I mostly read it in the […]

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An Open Letter to My Tagged Photos

March 25, 2015

I used to cringe whenever Facebook told me that someone tagged me in a photo. I could feel the color draining from my face as I clicked to find a candid photo of me staring back at me. A photo that I had no control over. A photo in an unplanned moment. All I see […]

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Current Status

March 18, 2015

(Warning: This is a stream of consciousness post, also known as word vomit.) I’ve talked about how I am always aware of how I feel and if I can’t figure out the root cause of a feeling – I dig until I do. Self-awareness isn’t just a fad for me. It’s necessary. When you grow […]

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Featured Seattle Event: SAM Remix

March 5, 2015

One of the many, many…many things I love about Seattle is the abundance of events and culture. In addition to all of the great breweries, hiking spots, the amazing coffee, wineries and live music venues, Seattle has incredible museums. Seattle Art Museum (SAM) is one of them. It’s a shameful admission that in the two […]

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