Clinical Procrastination

This site still exists.

I need to put that there because, at this point, a lot of people who followed my blog probably have wondered if I’ve just thrown in the towel on blogging. Well, I haven’t, I’ve just forgotten time and time again to write stuff. I’ve even planned a few posts, put them off a few days, and then days morph to weeks, and here we are, the 2nd or maybe 3rd post in ~2 months.

It’s a shame because I’ve always acknowledged that ‘consistency is key’ and all of that, yet I have periods where I ignore that statement completely. Truly, if I want a consistent and true following on anything, I’d have to learn to push past procrastination.

The mighty, infamous, procrastination. Likely, you’ve done it before, you’ve heard your friend talk about it before, and you’re pretty familiar with the word itself. It’s the lazy man’s choice in high school- why do today what you can out off ’til tomorrow? Well, because it’s a habit, and in some ways, an addiction.

I don’t mean to say I’m addicted to procrastination, because I hate the act, but I seem to constantly keep coming back to it. Just ask my Mom what my biggest weakness is; she will probably tell you all about my procrastination issue.

It’s almost to the point now where it feels somewhat involuntary. Like, I procrastinate so often that it’s just part of ‘the process’ at this point. It has seemed uncontrollable at times, but that may be a bit dramatic.

For example, my New Year’s Resolutions tell the story pretty well. I said I’d learn guitar, I did for about 3-4 months, and now I haven’t picked up the instrument since June. I also made it a point that I’d get a documentary churned out by this year, and although I actually saw that goal to completion, it took maybe 2 months longer than I planned it to. I also have just generally procrastinated this summer a lot- oil needed to be changed on my car at the end of June, routine maintenance light needs to be shut off, need to finalize my decision on a college to go to after this semester, etc. The list really goes on and on, and I feel like addressing the issue (procrastination) only slightly alleviates the problem, yet I haven’t been able to more or less ‘cure’ myself of it. It’s truly the one symptom of ADD that I believe I actually do have. Earlier this year, when I was on ADD medication and still weighing the chance that maybe “yeah, I do have ADD”, that was the one thing that strung my curiosity along: I am a master procrastinator. That is the one thing that made me think I maybe did have ADD, because when I look objectively on my life and the sort, I’ve always stumbled upon putting things off until tomorrow. I still have iOS9, I have been clicking the ‘remind me tomorrow’ button on my laptop for months, you get the point. I can stop it though, if I wanted to. Wait, but, can I? It’s the same kind of thing drug addicts say about their drug addiction. Well, I could stop smoking if I wanted to. I could never open another bottle of beer if I truly desired that. Well, think about it- could you? 

Thanks for reading

Luca DeJesu, 3:56 PM

Cold Showers and Coffee

Ahh, just in time before July ends! I think that’s…two posts this month? Man. If I had a following, I’d have lost them by now, surely. The key to keeping people interested is really consistency, and man have I been the opposite of that this summer. I remember I thought about doing a “post-a-day” thing, where I’d make a new post for each day. Safe to say that didn’t happen, but does it really matter? Eh.

There is no real reason as to why I’ve been absent from my website, I just haven’t felt like writing about much. Summer has been good, but it has been really quite normal if that makes sense. I’ve basically just been working, hanging out with friends, and making some videos.

Oh, by the way, my documentary is finally finished and posted. Took me long enough. It came out alright, it definitely feels like it could’ve been better. But, that’s how I feel about every thing I make after it’s made- not to worry, I’m working on new videos already. Here is the link to “The Pursuit of Prescription” (my mini documentary):

 

Check it out if ya want.

Anyways, I did want to write tonight, as evident by what you’re reading. I’m not abandoning my site, promise. Never was gonna just let it sit and disappear, I just don’t wanna force writing. I’ve been pretty “at peace” all summer, and thus, no real writing inspiration. Writing usually comes about when there are troubles or fortunes, it’s never really something you think about doing when you’re just comfortable doing what you’re doing.

One thing that’s happened of note is I finally cut ties with amphetamine. It was a 4-5 month relationship and I couldn’t really wait to find a way out. It seemed I wasn’t going to ‘find a way out’ for the longest time- it seemed like I was gonna rely on vyvanse or adderall or some edgy stimulant for the end of time. Because, it was supposed to fix my ‘ADD’ or whatever- really, I needed it for my alertness. I’ve gone over this before- it was a double edged sword. 

Why a double edged sword? Well, I wanted to stay on it, because it (vyvanse, aka extended release amphetamine/adderall) kept me more awake, and reduced my urge to nap, and I got more done on it, naturally.

Whilst having that productivity and general increase in wakefulness, however, there was a hefty load of anxiety, social anxiety, robotic-ness, and overall flatline emotion. Never feeling like myself. Feeling too anxious to go on dates. Feeling too robotic to joke. Not being  able to wholeheartedly laugh. Ask anyone that’s had to rely on amphetamine or the similar, they’ll tell you. Or maybe they won’t, or maybe you yourself have been on it and don’t really follow. Well, a CNS stimulant as powerful as anything with amphetamine in it is going to magnify anxiety, so if you’re an anxious person, strap yourself in. You’re in for a ride.

I read a post that someone made online in regards to adderall/vyvanse. They titled it something like “amphetamine; the drug you learn to hate”, and the post was devoted to explaining the stages of getting accustomed to being on a stimulant. Starts off as “wow, this stuff is amazing!” to “ehh, I’m getting more done but ehh”, all the way to “holy shit I’m agitated all of the time”.

How did I find a way out of it? Well, as much as I wanna say that I cured my sleep issue, that’s not what happened, but rather I found something else that just works much better.

First, I’ve cleaned up my diet quite a bit this summer. More vegetables, fruit, coconut/MCT oil, curcumin, methylated folate, antioxidants, etc. I had to get that part nailed down, because if anything health related is going to be fixed, it starts with lifestyle, in my opinion. Then, I started exercising daily again- I’m getting back into basketball, and hopefully by August I’ll be in the weight room. So first, natural stuff has helped.

Next, I started doing new habits and minor things like that. I don’t know how much all of my 2 am Google science research will help in the future, but it definitely is time well spent, in my eyes. Figuring out all of my issues, relating them to people online- it doesn’t scare me, in fact, it does the opposite. The more knowledge I have, the better off I am. I believe that. Minor little habits also have helped; for example, I haven’t taken a warm shower in weeks. Cold water every day- the willpower it takes to hop in has gotta be doing something for me. I (literally) feel it.

Reducing sugar, less dairy, less processed food, less snacking, I’m sure has done a lot to help. But, the medication switch is what has allowed me to leave vyvanse in the rearview like I’ve wanted to for a while. I am now on what’s called modafinil, and man I couldn’t recommend the stuff enough. Well, if you have sleep issues, that is. Modafinil (or ProVigil) is not amphetamine, it is technically qualified as a ‘CNS stimulant’, but what it really is is a “wakefulness promoting drug”. That is what I needed, something that was simply designed to just wake me up. 

I’ve said this all along, I told all of my doctors this same thing: I’m sleepy, I’m not having attention issues, I’m just sleepy. It’s always funny to me to hear some doctor’s responses: “You’re not sleepy”. Think I’m bullshitting you? Nope! One of my doctors literally told me that to my face. Safe to say, I stopped visiting that dude. He’s a waste of my time, if he’s going to tell me what I feel. Now before I get angry talking about that man, I’ll continue along with why modafinil has flipped the switch.

It’s subtle. My heart doesn’t race on it. It’s not that strong at all, but it clears my mind up better than anything yet. It makes me feel ‘normal’, which is just what I wanted. I still can feel sleepy on it, but the edge of sleepiness is much gone. I don’t need to nap, and I have more and more wakeful moments on it. Best part? No more anxiety on it. I feel like myself, I am being myself, and people are noticing. All my coworkers are asking where this new “joking Luca” came from. They just don’t know it’s who I always was, underneath that shit amphetamine mask.

Modafinil is a medication for sleep apnea, shift work sleep disorder, and narcolepsy. It’s not for ADD. If a healthy individual takes it, they won’t feel much, maybe just a cleared head. Many people online claim modafinil/provigil to be the “limitless drug”, a ‘cognitive enhancer’, a smart drug. I’ll be the first to tell you, so you don’t waste your time- it’s not that. It’s so subtle and calm that it’s almost like a vitamin supplement. For me, though, a person who’s always sleepy for seemingly no reason, it helps me level the playing field.

So that’s been an update on what’s going on with me lately. I’ve been comfortable, I’ve felt like myself, and I don’t feel the need to do any much more than that. It’s good to be back!

Thanks for reading

Luca DeJesu, 2:29 AM

Sleep Pseudoscience

This is going to be a weird post, I’m just going to start with that. I’ve been doing a lot of ‘google research’ about sleep, sleep cycles, sleep disorders, and all of the related. I’ve done plenty before, not just because I am trying to understand my own sleep issues, but because it’s a genuinely interesting subject.

Sleep is actually relatively mysterious to the scientific community. That sentence alone took me personally by surprise, as I thought that much of it was understood at this point. But, no- scientists don’t know much about it, they don’t know why a lot of the sleep disorders that people have exist, and they don’t even confidently know why we dream at night. I don’t know about you, but that fact shocks me. I guess I put too much confidence in science with thinking we had it all figured out, but regardless, there’s always going to be more to find out.

I’ve got an idea, maybe an unofficial theory, about a sleep disorder that is probably regarded as the most mysterious of them all. And, I’m gonna attempt to explain it in simple terms, without dragging on, because I’m selling myself on it and I want other people to be sold. Maybe a professional research scientist will read this and he will get funding and figure out a solution to a currently-solution-less disorder. I’m just joking, by the way, but read on if you’re interested.

So the disorder I’m referring to is known as “idiopathic hypersomnia”. Never heard of it? I don’t blame you. I’d never heard of it before I got technically “diagnosed” with it. The idea of this disorder is just a blanket term when they don’t know what’s making you sleepy, really. No, that’s exactly what the term exists for- the word “idiopathic” means of unknown origin, and “hypersomnia” is just a fancy word for super-sleepy. In simple terms, this disorder is “super sleepy for an unknown reason”. Could be anything- anemia, depression, chronic fatigue, etc. But, they can’t figure it out, so they diagnose this. It’s pretty rare, because there are so many other causes for sleepiness, and once they are all ruled out (or, one is misdiagnosed), you’re left with idiopathic hypersomnia.

Usually, idiopathic hypersonic is associated with narcolepsy. Narcolepsy is a sleep-wake disorder where your brain can’t regulate sleep cycles normally, causing you to wake up a lot during the night and potentially be so tired during the day that you fall asleep. The difference in the two is very blurred. They both have all of the same symptoms, except muscle weakness known as cataplexy is unique to narcolepsy, and narcoleptics usually fall into REM sleep immediately upon napping. Oh, by the way- the diagnostic ‘test’ for narcolepsy is a series of naps, and they measure how long it takes you to fall asleep… to see that you’re actually sleepy and you’re not faking it or misinterpreting it. You fall asleep on most of the 5 naps under 8 minutes, and enter REM in any of the naps, you get narcolepsy as the diagnosis. You fall asleep in the same amount of  naps in the same amount of time (aka, you’re just as sleepy), yet you don’t hit REM sleep in any naps, you’re diagnosed with IH.

So, as the word suggests, this disorder hasn’t been solved. ‘Idiopathic’ anything is just something that hasn’t been explained yet. Cause and effect. Everything has a cause or an origin.

Anyways, with that brief and probably confusing background, I’ll give my theory.

So as far as modern science understands, the daytime sleepiness seen in narcolepsy is caused by the brain losing it’s ability to regulate sleep wake cycles, and this is most likely caused by the loss of wakefulness-promoting neurons in the brain (named hypocretins). If your brain doesn’t have the regulatory neurons to keep you awake during the day and to shift stages of sleep at night properly, then you won’t be sleeping well- and you’ll be sleep deprived no matter what. That’s in narcolepsy.

I’ve heard from many doctors and people online that in IH (idiopathic hypersomnia), sleep at night looks relatively normal, unlike narcolepsy where it’s dysfunctional and fragmented. So I look over my results for the 1000th time- and notice one thing that stands out- the number of “sleep stage shifts”. That is the number of times your brain changes it’s brainwave activity, from high frequency in light NREM sleep, to low frequency in delta wave deep sleep. I’ve looked up various personal accounts of sleep studies, read a few published research articles, and read personal responses online, and discovered that your brain is supposed to only shift between stages 7-10 times per hour. That way, it can stay in a stage, get it’s benefits, and maintain your sleep.

My number of sleep stage shifts? 200. Yep. I slept around 8 hours that night, so that equates to about 25 shifts an hour. My sleep was not at all staying in a certain stage; it was constantly jumping up and down and never having any continuity.

There are reports online that make the plea that doctors should pay attention to this, but when going over a sleep study, they don’t pay attention to how many times your brain switches stages, only the technical “awakenings” you had. Being in stage 1 sleep, I’ve learned, is not refreshing and you essentially feel awake. 105 of my sleep stage shifts were back to stage 1. That is enough to make even the longest night of sleep feel un-refreshing. So is this idiopathic, or did I just figure something for myself?

Don’t take my word for it, read an actual scientific study performed, a study that highlights exactly what I’m talking about, and concludes that “number of sleep stage shifts in a night can impact daytime sleepiness”- https://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pmc/articles/PMC2982738/

What I’m rambling about, is that maybe the cause of idiopathic hypersomnia is this. The brain’s inability to stay in certain stages of sleep continually. If it is the cause, that’s something worth looking into. I have no power here, however, I’m just a 20 year old who is blogging it. But that would be something, if this theory became a scientifically backed up cause. It’s a long shot, but I wanted to write, and this is what I’ve been honestly thinking about.

Thanks for reading

Luca DeJesu, 4:19 PM

Complacency

I just shaved. I don’t know why, but whenever I shave I feel ‘new’ and motivated. I didn’t really need to shave tonight, but I did, because it’s like a little burst of motivation. Is shaving a drug?

So anyways, here I sit, clean shaven and all. Writing a post, its 1:39 am right now. I know it sounds really late, but for me, this is somewhat an early time of the night. I’ve gotten on this ‘3rd shift’ kind of sleeping schedule over the past ~ year or so, where I usually go to sleep around 4 am and wake up around 1 pm. It’s a bad schedule and a habit that I’ve tried to break numerous times, just haven’t tried hard enough, I guess. I’m gonna go to sleep soon, and starting shifting it back starting tonight.

How did I let my sleeping schedule misalign so bad in the first place? I mean, a year is a long time to leave something unfixed. Part of the problem is that it’s okay for me to sleep in- I still live at home, I have a school schedule that caters to the night owl, and my job utilizes me as an evening worker. So, there isn’t a whole lot of responsibility in the morning for me, so I don’t really have to be up then. That’s the way it’s been for the past 2 years now.

The other part of the problem? Complacency. 

Becoming complacent. Being complacent. The thing I always say I want to avoid. I never want to fall into a zone of complacency, a one where my life is essentially ‘what it is’, and I’m not really looking to move the needle at all. I guess that’s standard, to want to be improving, or at least changing. Sure, not everyone actually does constantly improve, yet if you ask anyone, they’d almost all say that it’s their goal. To steadily become better everyday, to move forward and make life better each step.

In a lot of ways, when I look back realistically on me in the past few years (since starting community college), I’ve really become sedentary in a lot of the aspects of my life. I stopped worrying about working out, improving my jump shot in basketball, setting personal goals, and even my morality.

I’m not a saint, far from it, but there was a time in high school where I took morals a bit more seriously. The virtues of self control, willpower, the idea of stoicism, building confidence- they’ve gone missing in my life. I still am a nice person and that’s one thing I’m proud of, I’ve never let the main moral of “treat your neighbor as yourself” slip away from me. That’s the most important one to me. That one above all else. But, I no longer find myself practicing the same standards I did for a while. I used to be much better at being health conscious in my diet. I used to force myself to find motivation in tough spots. It’s like these goals that I would work towards, in order to practice to just be a better person overall, those have silently gone missing.

It’s not that I don’t care, because I do, but it’s that I’ve gotten comfortable. Being comfortable can lead to this idea of complacency. You don’t feel that need anymore, that you once did, because ‘everything’s fine, maan’. It’s not until something happens that kind of ‘wakes you up’, that you realize change is needed. When life isn’t throwing you that message, it can be hard to receive it. How do you receive it, anyway? I find that writing this out, for one, makes me realize what nothing else is telling me: I’ve gotta make some changes for myself and for those around me.

I’m sounding super general, I know, but it’s just because, well, in general I need to change some stuff. I don’t want a new school or a new friend to be that thing that ‘shifts me into gear’ all of the time. It’s not a pride thing, it’s just that I believe I need to invent my own gear shift. I feel like everyone should have the ability to find fault in themselves and seek out a solution. In saying that, I hope I’ll practice what I’m preaching.

A customer came into Starbucks a few days ago. He points to a bagel and asks “Is this the sprouted grain vegan bagel?” 

“Yeah, I think. It replaced the multigrain bagel”, I say, with a slight bit of doubt. I didn’t realize we had a ‘vegan bagel’, I thought it was just another bagel.

“Is it vegan? I didn’t even know that! Are you yourself a vegan?”

Yeah man, I’ve been trying to switch to veganism. It’s hard, I’m only on week five, but I’m hoping I can keep it. I’m feeling more ‘chipper’ already since I started watching my diet”.

Five weeks? On a vegan diet? To me, that seemed impossible. It’s not impossible, obviously, but man, I just realized how far off I’d be from having the same sense of willpower as this dude has. He’s kept this incredibly restrictive diet up for 5 weeks straight and is rolling on, meanwhile I had some southwest chicken microwavable taquitos with a soda late last night. I give this guy props. I could learn a thing or two about self determination from him.

With that, I’m gonna wrap this one up. We all need self determination, or the ability to produce it. I don’t have it, but I hope I’ll stop being a lazy fuck and actually fix that. Maybe by the end of summer, I’ll be awake in the morning, hitting the gym in the afternoon again, and mentally overpowering that urge to get some Jack in the Box tacos.

Thanks for reading

Luca DeJesu, 2:08 AM

The Key

What do you value most in your life? Really though, have you ever thought of that? What do you personally put most value in, what is your ultimate goal, what do you live for, etc etc.

I think I’ve mentioned this before on here, but to me, the ultimate goal and the key to everything is happiness. In my life, that’s what I put atop the totem pole. It’s what I aim for, it’s what I deem necessary, and it’s what I truly live for. It’s pretty simplistic, maybe I’m a simple kind of person.

Do you ever stop and think about this idea though- the idea that lots of other people don’t put happiness first? I’m not trying to say that just because I personally think happiness is the true goal in life, that everyone else should feel the same. Maybe other people already have happiness and don’t need to prioritize it. Maintaining happiness, as a constant, 24/7 thing, is impossible. It just is- you’ll have days where it seems to disappear, and on the contrary you’ll have weeks where you feel euphoric. But, it fluctuates, and I’ll make my case for why happiness is what you should aim for every day. Not money, not social status, or whatever else you could think of.

Skip back to what I said earlier:

“It’s what I aim for, it’s what I deem necessary-“

Wow. Quoting my own words felt incredibly douchey. It’s for style, ok?

Anyways, notice how I claimed that happiness is a necessity, amidst that sentence of explaining why I value it? It’s kind of a strange way to put it, isn’t it? It sounds like I’m saying that you need to be happy, and in a sense, I am.

Obviously, it’s okay to not be okay. It’s alright if you’re dealing with depression, you’re having a down day, or you just aren’t feeling it. That’s totally normal and I’m not at all saying that it shouldn’t exist, because the fact of the matter is that no matter what, it will always exist, in some shape or form. What I mean, though, is that in order for you to live your best life and do what you are capable of doing, you need happiness. 

It’s a baseline. A key ingredient. 

Last night I came across this realization: you don’t hear about people in the news who aren’t happy. If you do, it’s because their career is slumping- maybe the actor has been out of the spotlight for a few years, a musician hasn’t released an EP in a couple years, or the director hasn’t got on the set seriously in a while. It’s more or less a fact, I’m starting to understand, that when you’re happy, you’re doing your best work.

I came across this realization last night watching a music video with my sister. She was showing me a new band I hadn’t really heard of before, Diiv. The band is an indie/alt-rock sort of group, and she figured I’d like them. Well, I did, but one of the first things I noticed is that the lead singer, Zachary Cole Smith, looks a bit like Kurt Cobain. I really like Cobain, and so does my sister, so I mention it to her- “He kinda looks like a younger Kurt Cobain”. She nods in agreement- “Yeah, and he’s also addicted to heroin like Kurt was. He’s gotta get off it. Look at him in this video, he’s clearly on the stuff”. 

Man, that’s some serious stuff, heroin. Goes without saying. And this guy, is at risk of losing his career because he can’t stay off it- he’s been arrested multiple times in possession of it, and as of now he’s in inpatient treatment to try and break his addiction. Good for him. His band has a lot of potential and, well, heroin isn’t going to get that band where they want to be.

Then, I had a crude thought. In all these studio recording videos, it was pretty clear that Smith was on his drug of choice- his eyes dilated, his face calm, and his gestures a bit slowed. Wouldn’t being drugged out mess up his playing?” I ask, sounding like a 5 year old. My sister tells me that he seems to play better on it, and I can’t dispute it. He is passionate in these videos, stringing together melodies with his brother and the rest of their band like it’s nothing. He really loves what he’s doing!-or, is it the heroin?

Seriously. Why do people usually get addicted to drugs anyway? To me, most cases must be because they’re fed up with their reality and are tired of fighting, in a sense they take an alternative path. Some people say it’s the “easy way out”, but I’m not gonna say that because you can never know how bad someone is struggling if they resort to something as infamous as heroin.  And, much like the man who I compared him to, Kurt Cobain, Smith has a history of depression, it turns out. No surprise there.

I don’t judge people who are addicted to drugs as much because of this. I give them the benefit of the doubt, as we should as they’re all people just like us relatively sober people. I obviously want people with addictions to get off them, because they’re flat out life threatening, and there is other help available.

But, back to the point I’ve been trying to make- Diiv may not be heard of if it weren’t for Smith artificially manufacturing his happiness. It’s something to think about. Heroin is horrible and he should’ve never turned to it, but he likely did it to escape depression. And, when he did, he found happiness, and he found his art. He made it big, and I don’t doubt it’s because he was happy.

In less severe cases, we see people on television who appear happy all the time. Think about Jim Carrey. As a kid, I thought he couldn’t frown. He was always having fun, making jokes, and seemed to not even know what the feeling of sadness was. As I grow older, I find he has a history of manic depression that runs in his family, and that comedy has always been his scapegoat. It’s great, that he could find happiness in the comedy genre, because that vaunted happiness made him a legendary career. Would Jim Carrey ever have been heard of if he chose politics? Well, if he were happy doing it, maybe. You won’t being doing your best work until you’re happy doing it, and that translates. People feed on it, and you sort of become one with what you do.

Personally, I know it to be true. I can’t create if I’m depressed. Whenever I’d have a spell of sadness, I usually don’t do what I want. Then, that day where the sadness would cease to exist, I’d come up with a bunch of ideas for a painting or video.

That’s why I put happiness in the number one spot on the life goals list. It’s always important. Even when I have it, I’m trying to keep it as long as I can. I’m trying to manufacture it in the hardest of places. The reason I do that, is because I know it’s vital. Happiness first, the rest will figure itself out.

Thanks for reading

Luca DeJesu, 6:35 PM

Managing Perspectives

“I’m a million different people from one day to the next”

It’s a lyric from a song that we’ve probably all heard before, Bittersweet Symphony by The Verve.

Well, he wasn’t being literal in the lyric. Obviously. He was, however, being somewhat realistic. At least from my perspective, we are all different people depending on who’s listening. To some extent. Or, maybe not to any extent. I’ll speak for myself.

Well, I definitely have different faces for different crowds. It’s always been that way, and it centers around how I see them react to how I act. There are stages in any relationship- any friendship, partnership, etc. That first stage, when you’re getting acquainted with someone, those first impressions- for me, that’s a template I work on. I have that filed into the back of my head, and I edit it continuously. Hey I’m Luca, how are you doing? I like art, basketball, favorite genre is alt-rock. Now, obviously I don’t just spit out that sentence when I meet someone. But, that version of me that’s introducing himself, is universal. Generally speaking, that’s probably the closest thing to who I am. Other friends that I have, see other ‘phases’ of me if that makes sense.

I cuss around my best friend. I watch my mouth around my friend who is religious. I flirt with the single girl who I’m getting into. I refuse to be controversial around my serious friend. It’s that kind of thing; I shift my mold based on how people expect me to be, or how it would best suit the relationship. It is the concept of being a ‘million different people’- you wouldn’t say those cringe jokes you make with your best friend at 3 am with your date. You might later, but for now, you want her to get comfortable, and you assume you being too off the wall would deter her. So, you change your face to save face. Don’t know how clever that was because it only makes half sense, but that’s the point I’m trying to make.

There are a lot of frustrations with this, clearly. I hate when I’m hanging out with a friend and they’re like I didn’t know you could be serious! Because, my relationship with that person was casual- oh yeah, I’m forgetting that duh, of course they think I’m constantly joking- because, around them, I am.

Not everyone sees you for even half of your day. Even the person you live with, be it your family, wife, husband, bff- they don’t see you for 50 percent of your day. Unless they were just attached to you at the hip, they’re not gonna know you like you know you. And, especially for those friends you see off and on, they may think you’re a totally different person than you really are.

That last sentence frustrates me. I could tell you with confidence that I’ve turned a lot of people off via SOCIAL MEDIA because of how I accidentally portray myself on it. I make awkward humor, self deprecation, and then before you know it people have an idea of who you are before even getting a coffee with you. I know for a fact it’s ruined chances at dating someone before- a girl once texted me verbatim “you’re not my type at all ahahha” after I jokingly said “I’m gonna have to drown in my tears, then” when she rejected my coffee date invitation. Look, I was 16, and it was a joke. Intended to make her laugh, no matter how cringe-inducing it was. She’d never seen me in person. We’d never hung out. We’d been texting a week (maybe two?), and she’s already hitting me with that “you’re not my type”- WHAT? That awful phrase “you don’t know me” is actually relevant here- she didn’t know me. She didn’t even know the surface of me; that ‘template’ I was referring to when I’m getting acquainted with someone. She didn’t even give me the chance to show her that, because she gathered from my retweets and Facebook posts that I was just not her type. Fair enough, I can’t get upset about that. I mean, I can, and I was, but I’m not really allowed to voice that. It’s her right to rule me out based on her pre-conceived notions. For fucks sake though, really? Give me a chance. When I’m up at 2 am still listening to your personal problems and your current boyfriend is ignoring you for 12 +hours, I’ll just say I told you so. Oh wait, it won’t get to that, because that was 3-4 years ago and you didn’t give me my chance.

That’s not the only time that’s happened. And, it has happened on wider scales too. I’ve had periods where no one would invited me to a party based on who was there. Okay? Well, the guys who did invite me kept inviting me because I made them laugh. They’d give me a chance and I was able to repay them by making it more fun. And, don’t act like it’s never happened to you. You know some people won’t hit you up because they think they know who you are. Sometimes it’s fair and just; don’t ask me to get high and watch the big bang theory with you, because we both know I don’t do those things often. In fact, I never watch the big bang theory. It’s not funny to me. We both know I’m not the guy for that. But, the only reason that you know is because you got to know me.  And, you saw me through the lens I showed you.

Everyone has a different angle for a different situation. My crude humor turns into awkward kindness at family gatherings. It’s what I wanna do, to make a joke about something preposterous, but because I know my aunt wouldn’t laugh, I bite my tongue. It’s a thing we do as people to make conversations and relationships as fluid as possible. It’s a good thing, in general. To try and compensate for not only yourself, but the other person you’re interacting with.

But man, the whole “overthinking” part of anxiety really nails me here. If I let myself think into this concept too long, I’ll start uncovering some tough truths. Maybe the reason this person doesn’t wanna hangout with me is because they think I’m always making fun of life and never able to be mature. Maybe this person thinks I’m too serious for their taste because I thought it’s what they wanted me to be like. It’s not being a people pleaser when you concede the fact that you have to monitor what you say based on how the other person would take it, to a certain extent. You are just trying to keep the peace, after all.

According to a classmate in 12th grade economics, I’m quiet and not much else. It’s all they’ve ever seen from me. But, according to the 6 or 7 different people I’ve seen in the past week, I can actually talk. According to my Mom, I’m a serious, diligent worker. However, Kevin sees me as a sailor mouthed comedian. I could pile up these comparisons for days. Is it being an enigma? No, it’s being human. At least, that’s how I see it.

Thanks for reading

Luca DeJesu, 3:32 AM

Self Control

The elusive virtue.

Well, maybe not for you, but for me definitely. I have a weak sense of self control, I really do. And I’m not proud of it, obviously. But, it is definitely one of my weaknesses.

Self control is just the ability to ‘say no’ to certain things, or to hold back from doing something, in an effort to be tter a situation. In everyday life, it manifests itself in eating habits, what you say, what you spend money on, those types of things. It’s essentially the power to hold back on something.

The religious theme of “resisting temptation” is exactly what the concept of self control is about. Could you say no, would you say no, or did you say no? If you had the choice and did, then that’s a point in the self control category.

The past few years, I haven’t scored a whole lot of self control points. I’ve become more and more lenient on ‘letting things slide’. It is what happens when you become less disciplined, in essence.

Why does a person become less disciplined? Is it because they don’t care anymore, because they’re lazy, or did they just get tired of doing it? I don’t really know. One of the things that would always prevent me personally from doing something dumb was anxiety- the fear of what could happen, or the negative thinking that correlates with higher anxiety can be a self control moderator in itself. But, that’s not really you- anxiety can’t be the thing that holds you back. If it is, then is it really you that has good self control, or is it just your mental anxiety? To me, I never wanted to credit anxiety with anything. And, now that I’m a few years older, I don’t have as much anxiety as I used to (thankfully)- so, consequently, I worry less. Worrying less may have led to further lenience on having a discipline of self control. The more confident you are, the more choices you can make, It’s true- it opens doors when you leave anxiety in the rearview.

Again though, I’m not sure if that’s what explains it. I’ve always had issues with saying no to things that I want, I’ll just say that I used to be better at it. Nowadays, I think I generally make better diet decisions, but that’s because I feel like I have to- I don’t make an earnest effort to workout anymore. I’ve got a bad habit about going back to old habits without breaking them. That’s a form of low self control. Having the courage to say “I shouldn’t say this to this person” or “I’m better off leaving this alone” is something I consistently find myself failing at, it’s frustrating.

I swear this blog isn’t going to become a 24/7 negative post-fest. I just realized it must seem that way. The few posts I have published in the past few months have all had some kind of negative tone it seems. There are plenty positive posts to come!

I shouldn’t just talk about my self control issue, I’ve got to work on it. It’s a virtue that really everyone should work towards. Think about how many times that lack of self control has gotten you or someone you know into trouble. Or how many times it caused you to slip up or be setback. It’s the culprit of a lot of that, isn’t it? Well, at least it is for me.

Thanks for reading

Luca DeJesu, 12:30 AM