millennialexistentialist.wordpress.com

Before anybody gets upset, this is not a goodbye post. I have successfully maintained this blog for nearly two years, and it has become incredibly dear to me. I have shared so much on during this period of time, that I would never think of leaving, not to mention deleting, my Unbiased Opinion site.

However, I also feel like I need to write about a wider range of topics than just my thoughts and “unbiased” opinions on random things. This is why I have decided to start another blog that will be a bit more serious (typing “serious” with a serious face here).

Millennial Existentialist will be a more “grown-up”, well-written and somewhat educational version of this site, so if you like my current content, you might just like this even more. Make sure to follow for a more grown-up version of me – I hope to see you soon.

PS. I’ll still be running this site, but not posting as much as before. After all, I have a new focus now.

 

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13 Reasons Why: When Netflix Gets You Thinking

After several recommendations and much media attention, I recently finished watching a Netflix series called “13 Reasons Why” – a drama/crime show focusing on a high school girl who commits suicide. Before slitting her wrists in a bathtub and bleeding to death, Hannah Baker records a series of 13 audio tapes, dedicating each one to a different individual. These people were all from her high school, and had played a part in both her life and death. The 13-episode series follows the life of Hannah’s friend Clay, allowing the viewer to listen to each tape alongside the protagonist whilst getting a glimpse into Hannah’s life via flashbacks. In short, Hannah Baker kills herself because of high school drama.

I’m not trying to undermine what the protagonist had gone through; from rumours, to losing friends, to an unfortunate rape during a party. It cannot be denied that the girl dealt with a lot of crap. But suicide? Really? I don’t care how many people attempt to convince me that “it’s not right to judge until you’ve been in that person’s shoes”. Not only do I strongly believe that suicide is never an option, I’m also convinced that killing yourself over teenage drama is selfish, weak and disrespectful to loved ones.

As you can probably tell, I’m a bit conflicted over the series. On one hand, “13 Reasons Why” was captivating; from the suspense-filled story-line, to the acting, to even the filmography itself. I ended up watching all 13 hours of the show in less than 48 hours. Moreover, it made me realize how important it is to be nice to people, and realize that actions always have consequences – both obvious and hidden.

On the other hand, I think the series is sending a wrong message. It seemed to glamourize suicide, as well as stir up sympathy for Hannah Baker. What happened to her was tragic, but it does not make her a good person or a completely innocent victim. Not only did the girl take her own life after an unfortunate 2-year high-school experience, but she also ruined the lives of her supportive, caring parents and shattered the reputation of her school. Likewise, it seemed to dramatize the importance of adolescent drama instead of showing it as a period that eventually passes. Yes, teenagers are mean; they start fights, spread gossip and sometimes even assault each other (which is why we have such strict regulation in place). However, this is not an excuse to take one’s life.

Recording suicide tapes made for an interesting Netflix series, but the idea behind it is somewhat sick. When one of the characters in the show says “she killed herself for attention”, I’m not sure if that statement is an exaggeration or a fair point. Instead of realizing that there are much more important things in life than people’s opinions, being careful with her words and way in which she interacts with people, and ultimately prioritizing her studies to get into college, the girl spends her time crying over the fact that teenage guys are trying to get into her pants and that girls she trusted turned out to be bitchy. Yes, the event at the end was unfortunate, but Hannah had been considering suicide even before she got raped. At the end of the day, SHE COULD HAVE MOVED SCHOOLS.

So yes, I’m conflicted. I’m not going to sit here and pretend like “13 Reasons Why” wasn’t interesting for me to watch – it definitely was, in a weird way. Morbid plots have a tendency to capture attention; it’s just how our brains function. Nonetheless, there is something inherently wrong about the story-line, and noone can convince me otherwise.

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6:29 AM

There’s something self-destructively beautiful in staying up all night until dawn. Sometimes it’s with someone, and other times – you’re alone. The first happened earlier this week, whilst the second scenario refers to this night. I blame the end of the semester; as soon as I get a break from university, something clicks in my brain and I decide to completely mess up my sleeping pattern for a couple of weeks (until I realize that my melatonin levels will be fucked up beyond repair if I don’t start going to bed and waking up at a reasonable time).

Although it’s not the most beneficial or sensible choice, pulling an all-nighter is somewhat healthy for the brain. Whilst we remain more or less stable during the day, our mood tends to change several times during the later hours. Memories come flooding in; the good ones, the bad ones, and even the ones our conscious pushes to the very back of our minds. All-nighters help you to think, to plan, to make choices in complete silence. They also help you come to certain realizations – ones that may prove to be helpful when you finally wake up past noon.

And now, going to bed at nearly 7 am, I have once again lived through the strangeness that is a sleepless night. Good morning.

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Chasing Happiness

For some people, happiness is not simply a mood, or an emotion felt often. For some people, happiness is a very rare state of mind that comes once in a blue moon and always leaves a trail of sadness behind it. Joy becomes a forbidden feeling; if you feel it, and if everything seems to be going right for once, you must be punished for it sooner or later. Sometimes, this punishment occurs as a result of your own course of action, and other times – just by chance. Either way, whether you ruin things yourself or things become ruined by chance, life does not allow you to feel happy; to be comfortable. You begin to speak to other people, and see that the things which are granted naturally to them are the things you constantly seem to have to fight for, and often with no compensation in return. And that confuses you, because all your life you’ve heard the words “put effort into changing things, and you will be rewarded”. Yet nobody warned you about the possibility of a constant struggle with no reward.

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Aren’t you guys tired?

Aren’t you tired for putting on a show all the time? Trying to look glamorous 24/7? Putting more effort into your highlight and contour than into your future? Basing your self-worth off of WHO you know instead of WHAT you know? Searching for quotes that speak to the majority instead of speaking for you? Putting layers and layers of make-up on just to get that perfect Instagram glow? Starving yourself because you wish you had Cara Delevigne’s waist, or Emily Ratajkowski’s legs? Spending so much money maintaining a wardrobe that isn’t your own style? Overthinking every word you say just to impress others? Trying to prove yourself instead of already knowing your worth?

Well I’m not tired, mostly because I’m practicing the “mystical” art of just being myself.

Girls, you need to stop. Wait, before you get mad, nobody is telling you to stop working on yourself, or bettering yourself, or even making yourself more beautiful. But, at the same time, there are much more important things in life, such as being truly 100% you. Nothing is more satisfying and attractive than individuality, honesty and intelligence. Do what you love, style yourself the way you like, and don’t hold back on showing your true personality. It’s one of the most rewarding things.

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The 21st Century Paradox

I’m certain many of you are tired about hearing about the recent changes in the US political climate. With half of the nation protesting and screaming “bigot” at their new president, whilst the remaining half trying to protest against the protests, it’s no secret that America has become significantly more unstable during the last couple of months.

So what’s the deal? On the surface, it seems pretty simple. Liberalists are upset because they remain convinced that the new president is racist, sexist, homophobic, xenophobic, islamophobic and generally a bit incompetent. The conservatives, on the other hand, are also upset because they believe president Trump was fairly elected, and will certainly make “America great again” (whilst also shouting “fake news” at any outlet that broadcasts anything remotely disagreeing with Trump). However, there’s more to this conflict that meets the eye.

We’re all pretty much used to the modern world being associated with freedom, with the Western Hemisphere viewed as somewhat of an epitome for Liberalism (the other regions still have a bit of catching up to do). Likewise, we’re also constantly reminded of not only how beneficial this is to society, but that it’s the only way forward. Sure, being racist is inherently wrong. Oppressing women is inherently wrong. Assaulting gay people is inherently wrong. But this understanding shouldn’t come from political propaganda – any individual who is not a complete asshole (pardon my French) should have an internal understanding of this. However, a problem arises when people start creating a problem in the absence of one, or greatly exaggerating social issues that are not relevant anymore.

From personal observation, I have noticed oppression being pointed out in completely unrelated situations. It’s almost as if people are desperately seeking out a reason to protest, turning things over and leaving a stream of chaos behind them. Instead of truly promoting a more accepting society, straight white males are now being targeted as the “bad guys”, their behaviour being closely monitored for even the slightest trace of sexism/racism/homophobia/transphobia/islamophobia/xenophobia. Ironically, the fight for social justice has resulted in a new type of oppression, and a decline in freedom of speech.

Now, you have every right to disagree with me – there’s nothing better than an intellectual debate. However, if you find yourself being offended by me expressing my opinion, considering the civil and relatively unbiased manner in which I’ve done it in, it would be best to see where this reaction stems from – internal reasons or cunning external influence?

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Change?

As you already may be aware, today is the first of March. Today is also the first day of spring, and – most importantly – the first day of my birthday month (okay, most importantly for me, although I’m flattered if you share my viewpoint). Ever since I can remember, firsts always got me thinking about change. A month may not seem like an awfully long period of time, yet it’s enough to accommodate some relatively significant changes. However, whether these changes are good or bad depends on the degree to which you can exercise your willpower.

Let’s consider it from the following perspective: as humans, we have the ability to determine the type of person we would like to be, as well as the type of person we want no association with. Accordingly, we also know what behaviours are going to help us become that person, and which ones are likely to push us back. Sadly, old habits die hard, whilst willpower takes some time to train.

Change is often daunting. It’s viewed as a concept that requires a lot of effort, and our lazy human nature drives us to avoid additional strain. However, things become easier when you consider changing things for thirty days as opposed to forever. Like I said, we all want to improve something in our lives; be it our grades, our health, our looks or even our personality. But instead of deciding to fix everything forever, we can patch it up for a month and see where it takes us. I’m pretty sure it will be somewhere pleasant.

So, let’s make March 2017 a good one.

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