While part of my year's focus consists of living sans relationships, the other half is discovering and therefore, living as my most honest self or my "authentic life," an idea that is perpetuated by icons like Oprah and bestselling titles such as The Happiness Project (which I've heard is actually quite life-changing and thus, has been bumped to the top of my reading list). Now I've always been a perpetual self-improver. Book clubs, volunteering with the ASPCA, and taking acting classes have all made me a stronger, smarter version of myself; on the other hand, cleanses like the infamous leek soup diet, were miserable attempts for change and ultimately, failures. However, living your true life is an altogether different matter from advice found in the self-help section of Barnes & Noble, and while I'm no Dr. Phil fan, he does differentiate between the two well:
"Are you living a life that is more in tune with your "authentic" self (who you were created to be) or your "fictional" self (who the world has told you to be)?"
The authentic Liza always emerges when I'm in nature, particularly on a beach. Nothing can beat the simple joys in sunshine, beautiful water, a good book, and some of your best friends. It's my zen place-and yes, I just said zen for the first time in my life (there may be a yogi in me yet!). I didn't think about the ex or guys in general, for that matter, despite some of the cuties around and the couple spooning on the towel nearby (BTW-why would you want to spoon when it's hot and you're covered in sand?).
Of course, the blog came up today since it was also the first time I had seen some of these friends since launching earlier this week. A few questions, in particular:
Will you be blogging every day? Answer: Would love to if I have something worthwhile to share. I don't want to crowd subscribers' email. *Publicity plug! To subscribe via email, enter your email address on the right hand side of the main page and receive posts in your inbox :-)
Can we dress you up one night before going out? Answer...What? Maybe? I dunno...TBD (awkward laugh from me)
What about that book you're reading? Answer...yes, I know Something Borrowed by Emily Giffin is chick lit/relationship-ish but....
NO BUTS. I know my guy friend was/is right. Yes, the books I like to read on the beach or before turning off my lamp at night tend to contradict the Off the Market & In the Moment mission. And the movies I love. And the Sex & the City episodes I watch over and over and over, from Carrie's rocky start in season 1 (and bad lighting) to the finale of her relationship with Big finally coming to loving fruition. I'd already thought that giving up SATC for the year was a good idea and somewhat doable as I admit to having used Carrie's diatribes to validate some of my worst dating faux pas (plus E says her dvds need a break from my incessant playing). But giving up ALL my guilty pleasures?
As much as it pains me (and please realize the pain as 95% of my dvd collection consists of happily-ever-afters), I'm going to do it. I'll wean myself off over the holiday weekend and come Tuesday, it'll be back to work where I'll be forced to grab books from our bookshelf that focus on topics other than boy meets girl. Maybe I'll even learn something other than why He's Just Not That Into You.
And while I know guys out there are rolling their eyes at the value I put in such items, I hope you're also storing some of this info away for future reference. Like this blog, I hope the stuff we read and the shows we watch explain a little more of why some of us are the way we are. And I hope other gals out there-and I do know a few-are already living as their authentic selves, but in the mean time, there are some like me who have grown up on Disney movies, were "good" girls who never went to the principal's office, and are still finding the way to be in the moment simply as ourselves.
And while a good as it gets beach day does wonders for erasing my mind of old flames, I was still reminded I have a long way to go this year. I was disappointed in myself that I didn't feel strong enough/attractive enough to take E's challenge of doing my own humorous version of the escapade going on nearby: a group of girlfriends jokingly taking pictures in what I'd refer to as a playful mix between Little Mermaid's moment on the rock (you know the scene I'm talking about-where the waves crash during the final note of "Part of Your World") and a Victoria's Secret photo shoot in the sand. They were having a blast and didn't care who was taking notice or what they thought. To me, that's the ultimate achivement in both relationships and living. To be yourself, despite who's watching.
I'm off the market & in the moment!
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