Monday, September 14, 2009

50 Questions That Will Free Your Mind

     This set of fifty questions is from the inspirational website, which I have referenced before. It's from an article called, you guessed it, "50 Questions That Will Free Your Mind". The first line of the article is, "These questions have no right or wrong answer." While that may be true as a generalization, I'm going to do my very best to answer them all with personal responses as well as with sincere honesty from the mind or heart.

1. How old would you be if you didn't know how old you are?
     I would probably be in my mid-twenties, if I had my shit together. Unfortunately my age is what's holding me back from doing things that I want to get done, so I'd look like a lazy twenty-four year old.

2. Which is worse, failing or never trying?
     I'd have to say failing. If I never tried I'd never know, but I could deal with that easier than trying my hardest and failing. I don't take failure well.

3. If life is so short, why do we do so many things we don't like and like so many things we don't do?
     We feel we have to, plus sometimes we have to just do things we don't like. People don't live like they want to for many reasons. We like so many things we don't do because sometimes we're scared and sometimes we just can't.

4. When it's all said and done, will you have said more than you've done?
     No, I will make sure I've done more than I've said unless I die a premature death.

5. What is the one thing you'd most like to change about the world?
     I'd like the world to know that self mutilation can transform into an addiction, just like drug and alcohol addiction. There is a huge misconception that you can simply "get over" self mutilation with the right amount of therapy and self-control, which is not true.

6. If happiness was the national currency, what kind of work would make you rich?
     Educating the world on self mutilation addiction would make me happy. It's what I'm meant to do. It is my purpose.

7. Are you doing what you believe in, or are you settling for what you are doing?
     I am doing what I believe in, which is taking steps towards being able to educate the world on self mutilation addiction.

8. If the average human life span was 40 years, how would you live your life differently?
     Quicker. I would do drastic things to become famous so I could better educate the world on self mutilation addiction. I would start writing my books now instead of waiting.

9. To what degree have you actually controlled the course your life has taken?
     To the degree that I no longer actively self mutilate.

10. Are you more worried about doing things right, or doing the right things?
     I am more worried about doing things right because they are already set in stone and there are rules you must follow for it to be correct. With trying to do the right things you have room for leverage.

11. You're having lunch with three people you respect and admire. They all start criticizing a close friend of yours, not knowing she is your friend. The criticism is distasteful and unjustified. What do you do?
     I would call them out, unless the close friend is a bad one (sometimes we keep bad close friends). However, I wouldn't sit there and start trash-talking my friend right along with them.

12. If you could offer a newborn child only one piece of advice, what would it be?
     Does it really matter? They won't keep the piece of advice close to heart when they need in most, their teen years. It'd just be a thought in the back of their mind.

13. Would you break the law to save a loved one?
     Yes, but of course it depends on what level of law-breaking. Even though my dad is the first person that comes to mind, I still have strong morals about things that are just wrong. Would I kill children? No. Would I do drugs? No. Would I rob a bank? Yes. Would I steal? Yes.

14. Have you ever seen insanity where you later saw creativity?
     I think Marilyn Manson is a great example of that. Lady Gaga is also a fresher example of that, despite all the haters claiming she's unoriginal. Everything must be reproduced eventually though whether intentional or not. The manner in which you approach the presentation of a recycled idea is what makes you original.

15. What's something you know you do differently than most people?
     I deal with emotions differently than most people. I’m drastically more practical than most, more often than not. I follow my mind rather than my heart. Many of my peers consider me cold hearted or robotic in my way of dealing with things, but I am just living life the right way; the way that equals genuine happiness.

16. How come the things that make you happy don't make everyone happy?
     First of all, not everyone cares about the things I do, some not even in the slightest. They don't cherish the things I cherish or hold them in the same respect that I might.

17. What one thing have you not done that you really want to do? What's holding you back?
     I have really wanted to tell a friend of mine that I no longer want to be friends because I feel that she will never change. Holding me back for one is the fact that we rarely talk anyway, and it would seem bitchy and stupid of me to come out of the blue and tell her how I feel when we don't even act like friends anymore anyway. I don't want my other peers to view me as bitchy for not being friends with this person any longer, even though I can't control what they're thinking. Also, I don't want added conflict with this person, or awkwardness.

18. Are you holding onto something you need to let go of?
     Yes, the friend I just wrote about.

19. If you had to move to a state or country besides the one you currently live in, where would you move and why?
     Well this is a great question to ask me because I don't even want to live in this state. I would move to New York City because I want to live there one day, even though I've never been.

20. Do you push the elevator button more than once? Do you really believe it makes the elevator faster?
     I do not press the elevator button more than once, it has never even crossed my mind that perhaps pushing is more than once would make the elevator go faster.

21. Would you rather be a worried genius or a joyful simpleton?
     This question pretty much describes what I've questioned for a long time. My duties to the world aside, I would love to be a joyful simpleton--ignorance in bliss. In my second life--if such a thing exists--I would rather be a joyful simpleton if that meant living as a worried genius in this life.

22. Why are you, you?
     I'd have to say because of how I've "taken" events that have happened to, or around me. Suffering doesn't teach lessons, learning from suffering does. Having an addiction to self mutilation also greatly molded me into who I am today as well.

23. Have you been the kind of friend you want as a friend?
     Yes and no. Yes because I consider myself a good person, therefore a good friend. No because I want a best friend, and I can't be a best friend without having one.

24. Which is worse, when a good friend moves away, or losing touch with a good friend who lives right near you?
     Losing touch with a good friend who lives right near me. I hate that feeling.

25. What are you most grateful for?
     I am most grateful for my parents, my disease, and the life I've lead. I'm most grateful for the wisdom, strength, and serenity I've been blessed with. I am most grateful for my logical sense of thinking and dealing with things in my life.

26. Would you rather lose all of your old memories, or never be able to make new ones?
     Selfishly, I would rather lose all my old memories even though that would render me useless to educate the world on self mutilation addiction. I want to make new memories of my college graduation, my future husband, my future children; but with that I want to make new memories of me changing the world for the better. However, I am not given the choice to be able to hold the information and experiences I need to educate the world and be able to remember doing so. Selflessly, I would choose to never be able to make new ones. I must dedicate my life to helping others.

27. Is it possible to know the truth without challenging it first?
     Ignorantly, sure. "I KNOW THE TRUTH ABOUT GOD" is so commonly shouted from the mouth's of religious fanatics. Does anyone really know the truth [about God] though? Nope, never will until you die, and you only will then if anything about an afterlife was ever the truth. Of course this question isn't directed towards religion, but of course you have to challenge something to know the absolute truth.

28. Has your greatest fear ever come true?
     I don't really have a greatest fear, I have fears of things. My biggest fears are of sharks and tornadoes. I haven't been attacked by a shark, and I've never seen a tornado, so I'd have to say no, they haven't come true.

29. Do you remember that time 5 years ago when you were extremely upset? Does it really matter now?
     Five years ago I was going through my deepest depression, yes it matters now. Everything that happened during my active addiction forever molded me and my future, and enlightened me on what my purpose is.

30. What is your happiest childhood memory? What makes it so special?
     My happiest childhood memory is Christmas the year after my biological mother walked out on our family (me, my dad, and my little brother Kirk). We lived in a trailer at that time, but it didn't affect our day in any way like it usually did. The people that I loved and cared about were there, my dad, my mom Stephanie, my aunt Sandra, and my mema Claudia. My biological mother wasn't there, which made it all the better because at the time she was in her prime drug addiction. There wasn't any negativity or sadness, just pure joy and happiness. I can't even remember what all presents I got, but as you are probably realizing that's not what made it so amazing.

31. At what time in your recent past have you felt most passionate and alive?
     Whenever I write or speak about self mutilation being an addiction. It's so often now that I do that I cannot pinpoint one single time in my recent past. I'm in a very passionate, lively point in my life right now.

32. If not now, then when?

33. If you haven't achieved it yet, what do you have to lose?
     Nothing, and yet at the same time, everything. Dignity and respect can be lost depending on what you're trying to achieve and how you go about it, especially if it is society-changing. Everyone will try to tear you down once you're in the spotlight, ironically more so if you're trying to do a good thing. They will especially try to twist your positive actions into malicious ones. However, if you're honestly passionate about something you have nothing to lose because losing anything and everything is worth it.

34. Have you ever been with someone, said nothing, and walked away feeling like you just had the best conversation ever?
     Never, and I think this is one of the silliest "internet phrases" to ever tour the web. It's obviously written and targeted by and for lovesick teenage girls that lack spines. That or, happy older women. /shrug

35. Why do religions that support love cause so many wars?
     Because they're "organized."

36. Is it possible to know, without a doubt, what is good and what is evil?
     Of course not. Quick thought would suggest that murder is evil, and sure it's true if you're murdering people that are innocent. What about murdering a terrorist? That is considered good because you're eliminating evil. Even then though, is the terrorist evil? Not by his country's standards. Still then, some of the citizens of his country of origin might think he's evil unlike the majority.

37. If you just won a million dollars, would you quit your job?
     No, a million dollars is nothing these days, but it's enough to start some investments. Plus I don't even have a job.

38. Would you rather have less work to do, or more work you actually enjoy doing?
     I'd rather have more work I enjoy doing, to an extent. I wouldn't want to be swamped because that would only cause me to be stressed, therefore canceling out any possible joy I’d get from it.

39. Do you feel like you've lived this day a hundred times before?
     Not at all. I don't feel like I've lived any day more than a handful of times, that number probably not even exceeding five.

40. When was the last time you marched into the dark with only the soft glow of an idea you strongly believed in?
     Last night in the shower, where I do most of my reflecting and brainstorming. I plan on constructing this idea into reality to educate the world on self mutilation addiction, but it'll be hard and a lot of kinks still need to be worked out for it to be productive and not just a waste of my time.

41. If you knew that everyone you know was going to die tomorrow, who would you visit today?
     If I was alone upon getting the news, I would go visit my dad, my mom, my brother Kirk, and my biological mother if I had time left.

42. Would you be willing to reduce your life expectancy by 10 years to become extremely attractive or famous?
     Famous, yes. Fame would make it easier for me to educate the world on self mutilation addiction, which is my life's meaning so if that meant shortening my life expectancy I must do it.

43. What is the difference between being alive and truly living?
     Being alive is just existing, which is easy despite what people may thing. Truly living is harder, that means going out of your comfort zone and making the most out of what life has to offer--which is everything.

44. When is it time to stop calculating risk and rewards, and just go ahead and do what you know is right?
     When you're doing the greater good for the greater number.

45. If we learn from our mistakes, why are we always so afraid to make a mistake?
     We're scared of the pain that comes with mistakes and we focus on that rather than what we learn from them.

46. What would you do differently if you knew nobody would judge you?
     I would be more confident in the clothes I wore. I often cover cute tops with jackets because I dislike the way I look when in actuality I know in the back of my mind that no one takes notice to my imperfections to the degree that I do.

47. When was the last time you noticed the sound of your own breathing?
     Does right now count? I usually only notice when I can’t sleep, but focusing on the sound—and especially rhythm—of my breathing makes it harder for me to fall asleep.

48. What do you love? Have any of your recent actions openly expressed this love?
     I love my dad, my mom, my brother Kirk, my dog Kauvuo, my gecko Pinsky, and helping others.
  • My Dad: I thanked him for taking me shopping this past weekend. It's sad that that's the only thing I can think of recent. I need to change that.
  • My Mom: I haven't. I need to change that too.
  • My Brother Kirk: I asked him if he wanted to help me bake cookies yesterday, which he did. Doing things like that with him expresses love in subtle, strong ways.
  • My Dog Kauvuo: I gave him a treat the other day for no reason, plus I cuddle him 24/7 anyway.
  • My Gecko Pinsky: I asked my dad if we could get him mealworms yesterday as a treat and to help him put on weight, which we did. He really enjoyed them.
  • Others: I started volunteering at a senior center recently, and I do more than just show up. I talk to the residents and show I actually care.

49. In 5 years from now, will you remember what you did yesterday? What about the day before that? Or the day before that?
     Yesterday I didn't do much of anything that had significance, so no. The day before that I went shopping with my dad, and I might remember that because we don't often have the opportunity to spend entire days together. I’m going to try and remember that day because it was special, and he expressed his love for me. The day before that I don't even remember what I did now, so I'm positive I won't remember in five years.

50. Decisions are being made right now. The question is: Are you making them for yourself, or are you letting others make them for you?
     Both. Example: I am deciding what university I want to go to, but they ultimately decide if I get in. Typically there is a balance to be made in the world. However, if I can control something completely—like keeping a bad friend—I try to make the decisions for myself, but sometimes I don’t for whatever reason. That’s a common character defect though, holding onto people you know are beneficial to your life.

     Another thing I have to consider with this question is that it has been pre-determined what my purpose is while I walk this Earth. By now you should know what that is, especially if you’ve read this entire questionnaire. While it may have been decided for me, I shall do my very best to fulfill its expectations.

     This thought-provoking set of questions took me two days to complete, and thoroughly exhausted me mentally. There wasn’t a moment that I poured over this that my mind wasn’t churning and crunching over—new and old—thoughts and ideas. I’m sure that was part of the creator’s intentions though, and for a good reason. I definitely learned some things about myself, some new, some old. I can finally walk away from this long list with the confidence that it provoked some self improvement within me, which I’m always looking for anywhere I can.

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