New Year’s resolutions or how I lost myself


This is a story of regression and confusion. This is a story of lost paths, mistakes and blind choices. This is a story that does not have a happy end or an end at all.

01.01.2019: I woke up startled that morning and I knew that 2019 is just an illusion. Measuring time was invented by human beings and thus, 8 changed to 9. Because I was conditioned to live by the rules of society my brain acknowledged the coming of the new year. However, I wasn’t about to start making an interminable list of crap with what I want to achieve in the new year or add new fantasies to the all too popular bucket list. It is absolutely unrealistic because you just don’t know what life throws at you everyday. I used to believe that the unpredictability of life is awesome because it does not allow you to settle into routine. I was ,thus, convinced that all you have to do in life is adapt, be flexible and go with the flow. Just see what happens, and go with it, a bit like in Daoism, or a lesson we might have learned from Don Quixote. Do not fight the windmills, do not go against dao, against the path! Just flow with the river ,and nature in the direction they dictate. That sounds about right, nope?

Well, not really. Not for me, at least. I was startled on the first morning of January 2019 because I was lost, and I started to analyze myself and view my entire life under a microscope. I had a great life so far, full of exceptional, happy moments, intense emotions and various experiences that included both gratifying, but also extremely hard and challenging occasions. So far, so good! I lived my 27 years of life by, somehow, following this principle of ‘the path’, following a kind of invisible line that life opened up for me. But all of a sudden, it just didn’t work anymore. It took me places that I didn’t want to be at, it made me travel dark routes outside and inside of myself. After graduating from my master in Belgium, my journey as a responsible adult was supposed to start. Taking into consideration that my family invested financially and emotionally in transforming my being into a succesful and happy adult, I believed I was somehow guaranteed to get there. I mean, I did very well in school, university, master, I managed to be by myself and organize everything in various foreign countries, I had amazing, smart friends, I was creative, clever enough ,and I got involved in the occasional volunteering or other artsy projects. I considered myself motivated enough to achieve what I wanted, I believed I deserved it because I was a good, kind and empathic person that somehow decided that she wants to contribute to other people’s wellbeing. But who was about to contribute to my own wellbeing? Well, everything started to spiral downwards. I just couldn’t find my way, I was struggling in the dark, I was lost at sea. Choices to make, career goals, what job to pursue, where to live, who do I wanna be, what are my desires and most of all, how do I balance what makes me smile and feel good inside with this new-found responsibility to sustain myself financially, and be responsible for myself and my adopted dog? I just couldn’t find any answers at all, and life was crushing me.


I wish I could say I found what I was looking for. But I didn’t. I can just say that I struggled with being an English teacher in Shanghai, a tourism lecturer in a university in a 3rd tier city in China and a tour guide in Turkey. Now I am back in Shanghai, doing a second master because I still haven’t found my path or I don’t have the courage to wander in the dark aimlessly. I don’t have resolutions for 2019 because I need to learn how to function again as a human being in society. I need to start again, by being a baby, a child, a teenager ,and finally an adult.

I lost my motivation ,and determination to fight and achieve what I want in life.

I am lost at sea, I am just floating endlessly, I am reading too much, watching too many movies, reflecting too much and feeling like a wreck, a failure. I keep wondering where did I go wrong? I mean, where did I lose my real self?

The self that desired to travel the world for a year or two and discover, discover, discover ….without plans or too much money? Well, I am afraid to let go and just travel. I am afraid that I will lose out on precious work experience to add on my CV when I am away on my year travel. I am afraid that I won’t have enough money and I will get stuck in the middle of nowhere, broke and vulnerable. I am afraid that I will spend money that otherwise I could have used to do something else with, like saving to be more financially secure.

I want to become a writer and publish my poetry ,and maybe in the future, short stories or a novel. Am I doing anything to achieve that? No. I am afraid to send any of my work to any publication or contest. I am not confident enough that I have what it takes ,and I am so scared to get rejected.
Where do I want to be? In a middle-sized European picturesque city where I could draw inspiration for my life, and poems just by walking on the streets and breathing in the spirit of history. I want to be able to admire the exquisite, old buildings touched by lives lost and lives yet to come. Where am I? In Shanghai, a giant glass-like city, full of impersonal skyscrapers, commercial shopping malls and ugliness.
I want to be economically independent, and have a job that fulfills me. What am I doing? Well, after a year of looking for jobs in various places and not finding anything suitable, getting rejected too many times and not even discovering what exactly I should be doing, I am now doing a second master in political theory. Gosh, I don’t even wanna do that, but I am too scared of not having anything to do at all. And I am so disillusioned with politics and leaders. I have always been. It is a pain for me to analyze and learn about political systems because I can only see failures in them, just like I see myself now.

I lack self-discipline and motivation, I eat too much and I even put on 10 kilograms since I have come back to Shanghai. I am highly disappointed with myself and it is hard to admit that ,by my own standards, I have become a failure. How can I say that? It is painful and I don’t know where it all went wrong. The hardest thing right now is to start addressing all these issues. And sadder than everything else is that I am clueless.


There are too many doors, and choices in front of me or maybe not enough. I remain numb, and unable to open any of them. I have this recurring dream where I have to run away from this terrible, bulky man, who wants to hurt me and touch me. I am in a fancy mansion that has never-ending rooms and doors. I always open too many doors and I see theatre-like scenes full of everything that one can imagine. The horrible man can never catch me because we always choose different doors. What to choose now? In my dream, I never stop opening doors and exploring rooms until it’s time to wake up. I would appreciate any comments with advice or suggestions!

20 thoughts on “New Year’s resolutions or how I lost myself

  1. Much of what you wrote here strikes close to home for me. Sounds as though, like me, you are high in personality traits Openness to Experience and Neuroticism, which means battling with yourself constantly (deeply desiring to travel to new places, but being beset with anxiety at the thought of everything it will take to travel to new places, for example). Maybe a little bit of research into the “Big 5” personality rubric (a.k.a. “OCEAN”) will shed some light on your situation. It’s not a fun mental space to dwell in, and I wish you the best in overcoming it.


  2. Seeing the charcoal painting above, and your write, one can safely say you truly have an abundance of inner qualities. “Focusing on your strengths more and finding a career within your talents” is an advice I heard once and found it very useful. A quote that I find very inspirational and directional by Socrates, “the secret of change is to focus all your energy, not in fighting the old, but in building on the new.” Wish you have a great 2019.

    Liked by 1 person

    • Sagittarius. Well, to be honest it feels that the qualities you were maybe thinking about haven’t been very well appreciated in the world so far. Thus, I am wondering, aren’t they useless?


      • Hmm, but isn’t that basing your goodness/worth on other people’s point of view? I am awesome and no one has to confirm it for me. I know it and that’s all I need and all that counts. See what I mean? Xox


  3. zazaxmilesoff says:

    I’d suggest to set small targets, and try hitting them one at a time. You need some positive experiences. Experiences, that will encourage you to tackle the big stuff. It can be anything like smile at a random person, go swimming, or take something up you always wanted to do? Acting? Dancing? And maybe you’ve seen through the pattern, it should be something that makes you feel good! Self-care is the most important thing in life, that we have to learn. You are unique! You deserve to treat yourself with more love and care 🙂

    Liked by 1 person

    • You are totally right, but I wish we had more time in life for this self-care you are talking about. First, we need to think aboit responsabilities, work, money, CV and so on. And afterwards, if we are lucky, we can dedicate some time to self-care. We might be too exhausted in the end to have any motivation or energy left to engage in sth positive.


      • zazaxmilesoff says:

        Honestly, that’s not right. Self-care is number 1. If we don’t, that’s how we burn out. Or get depressed. Or develop other mental issues maybe. Some things in life need to be made time for. That constant pressure to achieve, because we think that’s what we’re supposed to do, distracts us from finding our own truth/passion etc. Good luck with everything!


      • I wish we all had the strength to take care of ourselves before thinking or doing something else before. But the ones who do are already privileged enough. There are many categories of people who can’t even take a minute to reflect on their desires.

        Liked by 1 person

  4. You are so, so, so very talented and full of wonderful qualities – the world may be able to see it right now or not. That doesn’t make them useless.

    Your writing is beautiful and creativity magical. Just focus on one dream – a little dream maybe, take a step, a baby step towards it. Everyday and smile and feel the love of the Universe upon you.

    Don’t look at what is not working or what you don’t like. Focus on the light. I will hold you in my prayers and send you much, much, much encouragement, love and hugs! Stay well and smile often. 💕🌹💛


    • Thank you loads! I appreciate your advice and your encouragement. I am already smiling just for reading your bright, cheering comment! I hope your prayers will work. Love and hugs from here too!


  5. You’re style of writing is beautiful, you don’t have to worry about taking the next step to publish your work. Search inside of you, what moves you and what you are earnestly compassionate about and work towards it and you will excel!
    Do take the necessary steps in working towards writing your book! Break every chain, challenge your fears – You’ve got what it takes! Don’t let the norms of the society or the world consume you and let it push you into a shell and make you do what you don’t want to!

    Liked by 1 person

    • Thank you very much for your beautiful words of encouragement! I feel like every positive comment gives me energy and makes me acummulate power to accomplish what I desire. I am glad to encounter beautiful people with beautiful souls through my blog!

      Liked by 1 person

  6. Melanie says:

    I know this is an older post but I’d like to comment cause I’m so touched by what you shared and the vividness of your dream as it relates to your life. It can be hard for people to acknowledge that unlimited freedom can be a terrifying thing. The doors of our desires become endless and caring for ourselves actually weighs us down. So many people are suffering under the lie that “self-care” is the solution. I don’t know what you are doing with your life since you wrote this post but I hope you’ve been able to find that one small thing that you are meant to do in love’s service. It’s often connected somehow with your own suffering but instead of serving yourself you give to others what you always wished to receive. I’ve learned to slow down, be in one place and to ask God what is that one door that He wants me to open right now in service to others. When you are open to this He will help you find it. He will repeat Himself over and over again through the circumstances of your life and will show you that one door. The key to that door is your tears and sadness for a situation in the world that He also grieves about. It might involve really humble practical tasks while at the same time be an outlet for your art and writing. Even if it involves great sacrifice and suffering it will be fulfilling. For me it has helped to write out the story of my life thus far and to uncover within it the hidden themes that are not always at first obvious to me. God bless you on your journey. 🙂

    Liked by 1 person

Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in: Logo

You are commenting using your account. Log Out /  Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out /  Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out /  Change )

Connecting to %s