Learn More About The Undomesticated & being Twentysomething in the city.

Thursday, March 09, 2023

Putting Effort into the Effortless

For years I've always envied my parents sipping a martini after a long work day and thought to myself, I can't wait to experience moments like that; they're boring, routine, mundane. They require no effort. Or so I thought... 

Shaking a martini on a Tuesday with my loved one, hanging out with my quirky neighbours, and lacklustre dinners with incredible friends. We were sold this narrative as kids. These things will happen SO often they become mundane.

And yet, as I continue to get older, I'm feeling further away from what I envisioned as my 'ideal' mundane life. My friends don't live in a way that allows for easy hangouts - the TV sitcoms of our youth lied to us. No one comes over before breakfast to tell you about their day. Work starts at like 7am anyway?! When did we ever think this would happen... 

Dinner reservations with Seinfeld and crew, brunch with Samantha Jones and company... we figured they did this every day, all the time, due to the casual nature of it all. But what they didn't tell us was that this was a highlight reel. This isn't normal mundane life, this is scheduled, planned, and requires effort. The casual nature and conversations that happen between these people, reflect on how close they are as friends, despite how far away they live or how infrequently they see each other. 

What I neglected from my narrative of my parents life was that my dad travelled for work most weeks of every month. That moment that I witnessed, and figured was common, they fought hard for it. It was a moment that was rare and valued, and they aren't easy to get. The casual banter, knowing when to make another drink, are a result of years of making time for each other. 

The effortless moments I thought about as a kid, teen, young adult... they're not effortless. It's fucking hard. You have to make moments happen, and when you stack up all of those hard earned moments, you have mundane silly conversations to recall. You have a comfortable relationship to fall into that is anything but mundane.

It's no wonder I always prioritized 'mundane moments' in my life, because to me they were memories. A memory I cherished and hope to enjoy myself. I just didn't realize how hard it would be to create those. 

Everything is global now, including my closest friends. I have to make moments happen with them. I hope to make so many moments, that eventually they will become mundane to us. But until then... Trips to New York, trips to LA, a movie night, a walk to the corner store. It's not as easy as I thought it would be, but it makes it far more valuable. 

So, at the end of the day, I'll hop on a plane, and fly across the country, to experience my friend missing the subway I'm on by a millisecond, because of a sketchy looking dude. The mundane moment we finally reconnect on a 100 degree day sweating and laughing. Reminder - we both flew hours to get to the biggest city in the world, and this turns out to be the moment I won't forget. 

At the end of the day, I'll go to a movie that I'm dying to see 2 weeks after it's released just to make sure it's with the person I want.

At the end of the day, I'll coordinate a trip with all my friends where none of us live, and remember playing chess by the pool and buying hundreds of dollars of In N' Out late at night. Surely we could have done these things anywhere, but we needed to be together to make it happen. 

At the end of the day, what makes something memorable is who you do it with. No matter how frequent or how far. That relationship you have with people is what brings that sense of comfort, that sought after repetition, ease, mundane, and effortlessness. 

Don't forget to put effort to get these effortless moments. The lengths you take to make them happen will be overshadowed by ease and comfort they bring you. If you invest enough in your friends, in your family - these rare mundane moments, will become less rare, and will always be memorable. 

Thank you to my friends for making the mundane, not only memorable, but possible. - The Undomesticated 

Monday, February 12, 2018

It's Not About You.

As I enter the last year of my twenties, I’m pushed to think about my reactions to others.

I recently binge watched all the seasons of HBO’s Girls, and the one thing that became evident was; we are all self-absorbed, individuals, who cannot control others.

That being said, we tend to find people to blame for how we feel. And we somehow think that other people’s intentions are to hurt you. It’s clear, now, that if we are taking a motto into our thirties, it should be: ‘This isn’t about you.’

Shitty things happen in life that are out of your control. For example, your best friend could start dating your ex-boyfriend, you could get ghosted, or you could get cheated on. 

And these situations will cause you a range of emotions: hurt, deceit, rage, insecurities. "Why did they do this to me" is the sentiment oozing out of every pore of your body. But the real answer is quite simple: they didn’t. They did it for themselves. We are so self-absorbed that we believe people are doing things to intentionally hurt us, we seem to forget that everyone else is as equally self-absorbed as we are. Though sometimes people may have the intention of hurting you, most often than not, they were thinking about themselves.

You cannot control people. They, like you, are individuals who will do things that makes them happy. Whether that’s fucking your ex, or cheating on you.

We all have insecurities, and we all do things to not feel them. Many times, we too have done things that, no doubt, hurt someone else, but we put our feelings above theirs. Our needs, our desires, our lessons to learn. And that sums up our twenties. But it doesn't have to follow us into our thirties.

It sucks to realize that things in life aren't always about you, and that you can't always find a person to assign blame for your feelings. Who knew that we are no longer the centre of attention we once thought we were. I’ve recalled countless times where I've hated people for doing things to me, when in reality, they were doing it for themselves. It doesn't mean you have to get over it, or forgive them, you can still cut them out of your life, but until we realize that it wasn't about us, we can't really move on. 

It all comes down to being an individual and recognizing that you can’t control others just like they can’t control you.

It seems bitter to enter my thirties assuming no one cares about me, or takes me into consideration, but when entering any relationship you have to communicate what’s important to you. Outline your expectations, and if they are broken, at least you know you did what you could.

When you feel like someone has wronged you, it’s important to remember, it’s not about you. When George Costanza breaks up with people he always says ‘it’s not you, it’s me’ and I know it’s a line, but I would take it as truth. It’s always about them. So focus on you.

What am I hoping to achieve knowing 'it's not about me'? 
I’m hoping I’ll hold myself to a higher standard. I’m hoping as my thirties roll on, I’ll take it a step further. From recognizing everyone is self-absorbed, to becoming less self-absorbed myself. I need to let friends know what I would do for them, and what I expect from them in return. I need to let ex’s live their lives as they see fit, without assuming every move they make is about me. Give back to my community, participate in causes. And finally, start considering other people’s feelings. 

At the end of the day, if you feel hurt by someone, it gives a little bit of reassurance in knowing, it’s not about you.

- georgeelizabeth

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