Approaching 30 – a time to reflect, rather than forget

Posted on October 26, 2013


In a little more than three months time, I shall be reaching a point in my life where it’ll all be downhill. Where it’ll be all about mortgages, family planning, joint accounts and ISA’s. Nights of gigging on a daily basis will be told as though it be folklore from days of yore.

But then, maybe, it already is. Nowadays, I quite like staying in. The thought of being in a crowded, sweaty room of dance revelers and YOLO idiots is almost a vision of hell in my eyes. I even quit putting on gigs myself personally, as I kept my promise from when I started in 2008 that if it ever stopped becoming enjoyable, I’d stop on the spot. And true to my word, I did exactly that.  I had reached a crossroads that I suppose everyone at one point or another reaches, when they meet that fork in the road. A red or a blue pill scenario of sorts, only my consequences are yet unknown. Apart from the pursuit of happiness of course, but we can all live in hope.

In recent weeks, people have asked the same questions and made the same collective statements of: ‘Where have you been?’ ‘Been a long, long time!’ ‘Let’s say we catch up soon.’ To all intents and purposes, when I look at it, have I been avoiding people? Honestly, Yes. But I have my reasons. Honest.  I shall get to them very shortly.

Looking back over the past couple of years, it has given me a chance to take stock of the things in my life that were truly important to my well being on a spiritual, physical, psychological and mental level. It just felt like the right thing to do. I needed to pull away from people and things for an indefinite period.  I don’t know if there was an epiphany or a precise moment that I thought, ‘that’s it, I don’t like where I am, time to make some changes’. But I do know that for quite a time, I felt lost, alone and unsure of myself. I lacked confidence and was afraid to be myself. I felt that I was around the wrong set of people that would only enhance a negative mindset.

Because of all I’ve mentioned above, things had to change. This transformation wasn’t about money, nor ambition or looking for myself by spending silly money travelling halfway around the world (which I suppose would have been one way to do it), oh no. This was about something I knew I had to do. I knew that I wouldn’t find answers to my questions from watching average bands play in a pub on a cold Wednesday night or from aloof, thick-rimmed bespectacled hipsters. It was time. And so my journey began.

I was looking for answers in all the wrong places. It would appear that spirituality is devoid in places like Camden and Shoreditch. So the first step was to break away from people who I associated with things, which I once was into, but now had grown a dislike for. I don’t think I’ve ever liked being around drunkenness, whilst being the only sober person. It’s probably just as well I didn’t drive a car, lest I became a designated driver.

Then a few weeks later, an old family friend got in touch during Ramadan and wanted to see me, as it had been some time since we last met up. And so we did. He was also a mentor and life coach as well as someone extremely learned and discernable on all things. For someone who is aged around forty, he spoke like an individual far beyond his years, on all manner of things. Finally! Someone who gets where I need and want to get to! But more importantly, gets ME! For far too long, I’d wasted so much of my time in an almost material, whimsical, vapid and vacuous world that was devoid of any real meaning.

Another reason for the changes I made: people lived for the weekend.  They worked five days a week and spent the weekend looking to forget their troubles by drinking themselves into stupor, then have to eavesdrop on phone calls on the Monday after talking about the most hedonistic, debauched weekends. It’s like a modern day Sodom and Gomorrah. I wanted to reflect on things, press the pause button and take stock of things that mattered to me. Its like Morrissey said,  ‘Because the music they constantly play, it says nothing to me about my life.’ I couldn’t relate to that world and I felt very distant from it.

For a long time I denied it all I could, but the problem with that is status. Particularly being around media types and their altruistic selves and inflated self-importance. Everyone wants to outdo one another in a rat race, to see who can live best via paycheck after paycheck. Again, I knew that this was not all there was to life. I came across a quote one day online: “Before you diagnose yourself with depression or low self-esteem, first make sure that you are not, in fact, just surrounded by assholes.” A mantra I still hold true to this day.  It really helps.

Speaking of negativity, I’m astounded just today by the amount of people this morning on my Facebook feed that wallow in their own self-pity about hating themselves, feeling fed up and letting the world know about it.

It’s worth noting that I don’t believe in coincidences. Things happen at a specific moment for reasons beyond our understanding. Everything is pre-determined. Time is basically an illusion, something we neither own nor can get more of. But paradoxically, the past, present and future all co-exist with one another within the universe. That’s a subject for another time though.

The reason I mention this is because one day I was browsing through YouTube and came across videos of an imminent US Dollar Collapse. On how this collapse would be the biggest single thing to happen in the history of mankind as it will affect every person on the planet. Our lives are shaped by money in every aspect; our work, livelihoods and even our relationships with people are influenced by it. So the more I saw of this, the more I wanted to delve in with intrigue. It was there that I knew about the state of the economy, why it got to this point and consequently where it was headed. It helped me plan ahead of what to do when the inevitable takes place.

I also started to read a lot of self-help books, on how to achieve financial independence from the likes of Robert Kiyosaki, attended seminars on self-improvement and shifting in mindsets from that of negative to positive. From this I learned many things. One lesson in particular was about the law of attraction. Last summer I took courses on how to invest in property, as the most important thing you can invest in, is yourself. Education is the most valuable asset in this information age. I’m happy to say that I’m well on the way to gaining financial freedom with my mentors by my side to take me every step of the way.

The biggest lesson I’ve gained however is a new lease of confidence. At primary school, I used to take part in productions and play guitar + sing in front of people and would own the stage.  Then somewhere along the line, my confidence and self-esteem started to ebb away amidst testosterone fuelled teenagers would ridicule me at every turn, which could be a fundamental reason why I became a shrinking violet in later years. Thankfully, I’ve recently regained this because my true self has slowly but surely started to show for all to see. I can’t control what people think of me, so what’s the point in wasting my time trying otherwise?

Now I might come across as insecure and putting myself on a very lofty pedestal. But it’s my blog and I’ll blog if I want to. I wouldn’t be sharing any of this if it somehow wasn’t of benefit or if there wasn’t an overriding message to all of this.

And as I approach thirty years of age this coming January, what can I reflect on? Any pearls of wisdom I could share? Well, don’t be so hard on yourself is one I could give. Always have a positive mindset, be yourself and just enjoy life, so long as there’s meaning and substance to it. Only do things if your heart is in it and stand up for what you believe in. Surround yourself with people that can make you believe that the sky’s the limit. Experience things and travel, rather than buy the latest things. Believe in you.

But most of all, try to be happy. Where to start? Only you truly know the answer to that. But to be of some small help, I end with some parting words of the essence of destiny:

“Watch your thoughts for they become words. Choose your words for they become actions. Understand your actions for they become habit. Study your habits for they become your character. Develop your character for it becomes your destiny.”

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