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The “Free Your Mind” Experiment.

And now for a break in your regularly scheduled programming…

After seeing this on K’s blog, mid(twenty-something)-life crisis, I definitely wanted to try it. Because I consider myself a work-in-progress, I thought it would be interesting to see how my answers to these questions change over time. My goal is to re-answer the questions a year from now, and see if and how the answers change. Side note: I originally wanted to do this in 2011 and I’m just getting around to it. Better late than never, right? It would have been interesting to see if there was any significant change in my answers after the relocation. Oh well.

2012:

  1. How old would you be if you didn’t know how old you are? OAF. Old and fat. I’m sure that’s because of my physical condition, I feel a lot older than I am. Maybe 40. Ew. Note to self: answer this question differently next year.
  2. Which is worse, failing or never trying? Never trying. Despite how shitty I feel after failing, I hate “what if” even more.
  3. If life is so short, why do we do so many things we don’t like and like so many things we don’t do? There are two parts to this question. 1. I think that the main reason that we do things that we don’t like is because we feel like we have to. We grew up with parents telling us some form of  “I don’t care if you like it”/”you can’t always get what you want”. How many of us enjoyed homework and chores? We work at jobs we don’t like, go to functions we don’t care to go to, and act friendly towards people who we don’t like because we have to, or at least we think we do. We want to feed our families, keep our jobs, and avoid confrontation. Regardless of how short life is, there are always things that are going to take priority over things that we like (or even love) because we feel a sense of responsibility and a survival instinct that tells us we need to get things done regardless of how much we like them. It’s obvious (to me) that we should take pleasure in the small things in life that we have control over, but sometimes it’s hard not to get caught up in the larger things that we have going on. 2. I don’t really like this question. Why do we like so many things we don’t do? We can’t truly know if we like something unless we actually do it. That’s not the point of this question though. I think what it means is actually “why do we deprive ourselves of things we actually enjoy?” Fear of failure/rejection/humiliation. Financial difficulties. Time constraints.
  4. When it’s all said and done, will you have said more than you’ve done? Of course. I never shut my trap.
  5. What is the one thing you’d most like to change about the world? Intolerance, ignorance, stupidity, and the fact that North Korea can launch a “missile” but they can’t grow a potato. (That’s for you, Mr. Folk!) I know that’s more than one thing. See question number 4.
  6. If happiness was the national currency, what kind of work would make you rich? Working with animals, being a stay-at-home mom, cooking, learning, and helping people.
  7. Are you doing what you believe in, or are you settling for what you are doing? I’m currently settling for what I’m doing.
  8. If the average human life span was 40 years, how would you live your life differently? I would have 11 years left. My parents, grandfather, aunts, and some of my friends would be dead. This is depressing. I would spend as much time as possible with Mr. Folk, work as little as possible, travel as much as possible, and try to accomplish as many things as I could so that I could die not feeling like a worthless loser.
  9. To what degree have you actually controlled the course your life has taken? I guess I should take responsibility for all of the horrible decisions that I’ve made. And the not-so-horrible ones.
  10. Are you more worried about doing things right, or doing the right things? The answer to this questions varies with my mood. I want to do the right things, the right way.
  11. You’re having lunch with three people you respect and admire.  They all start criticizing a close friend of yours, not knowing she is your friend.  The criticism is distasteful and unjustified.  What do you do? I would tell them that the person they were talking about was a close friend of mine. Hopefully that would keep them from continuing to criticize them, but if it didn’t, I would ask that they not talk about that person in my presence.
  12. If you could offer a newborn child only one piece of advice, what would it be? Love yourself.
  13. Would you break the law to save a loved one? Yes.
  14. Have you ever seen insanity where you later saw creativity? I married Mr. Folk, didn’t I? Or maybe it was the other way around…ZING!!
  15. What’s something you know you do differently than most people? Hmmm. I type funny. I don’t use my thumbs when I type. I eat sushi weird. I like to pick the insides out and then eat the rice. I don’t think that I do anything of consequence differently than most people. Correct me if I’m wrong, people!
  16. How come the things that make you happy don’t make everyone happy? Everybody is different; that’s why.
  17. What’s one thing have you not done that you really want to do?  What’s holding you back? One thing? Really? Ugh. This list could be an entire blog post on it’s own. I really want to go back to school and get an advanced degree. Money is holding me back. I’ll leave it at that.
  18. Are you holding onto something you need to let go of? Always. It’s not something I’m particularly proud of.
  19. If you had to move to a state or country besides the one you currently live in, where would you move and why? Up until we moved to Montana, I would have said that I wanted to live anywhere but Florida because I was so miserable there. Now that I’m away from everyone that I love, I want to go back to Florida. There are SO many places that I want to visit, but I don’t think I ever want to live so far away from family and friends ever again.
  20. Do you push the elevator button more than once?  Do you really believe it makes the elevator faster? No. Who does this?
  21. Would you rather be a worried genius or a joyful simpleton? A worried genius.
  22. Why are you, you? Wife. Daughter. Friend. Wifey. Crass. Loud. Smart. Emotional. Loving. Lazy. Procrastinator. Animal-lover. Wanna-be photographer. Foodie. Avid reader. Expensive taste. Music-lover. Tattooed. Life-long learner. Space junkie. Nothing about this is grammatically correct. I’m sorry.
  23. Have you been the kind of friend you want as a friend? Not recently. It makes me sad to think about. This is something that I need to work on.
  24. Which is worse, when a good friend moves away, or losing touch with a good friend who lives right near you? Losing touch with any good friend is difficult, but losing touch with someone that you were close to that lives near you is very hard.
  25. What are you most grateful for? I am most grateful for being alive, for the ability to learn and comprehend, for my amazing husband and family/friends who love me, for the low/no humidity in Montana, for books, for being employed, and for the chance to start over again tomorrow.
  26. Would you rather lose all of your old memories, or never be able to make new ones? This question sucks. I wouldn’t want to give up all of the wonderful memories that I have of my Nana and my Uncle Doug, my wedding, or falling in love with my husband. At the same time, I would hate to never be able to make a new memory with any future children that I have.
  27. Is is possible to know the truth without challenging it first? I believe so.
  28. Has your greatest fear ever come true? I don’t think so, although there were various times in the past where I thought it had.
  29. Do you remember that time 5 years ago when you were extremely upset?  Does it really matter now? Which time? There are several times that I was upset, sometimes incredibly, that don’t make a difference now. That doesn’t mean those times were any less significant at the time, though.
  30. What is your happiest childhood memory?  What makes it so special? Christmas at my Nana and Pop-pop’s. My family always got together and made it as special as possible for all of the family and friends who came to spend the holiday with us.
  31. At what time in your recent past have you felt most passionate and alive? I honestly don’t know. I constantly feel like I am just going through the motions. This needs to change.
  32. If not now, then when? Um. What? I don’t even know what this means.
  33. If you haven’t achieved it yet, what do you have to lose? Another stupid question. If I’m answering what I think is being asked, people put off doing things because they are afraid to get out of their comfort zone. Even if there is nothing to to physically lose, people are afraid of the unknown, myself included.
  34. Have you ever been with someone, said nothing, and walked away feeling like you just had the best conversation ever? No. I like to use my words in case you haven’t noticed.
  35. Why do religions that support love cause so many wars? I don’t feel like I’m qualified to answer this question. Just because somebody supports or believes in love doesn’t mean that they don’t also support or have specific values about politics that can cause wars.
  36. Is it possible to know, without a doubt, what is good and what is evil? I think that good and evil are subjective.
  37. If you just won a million dollars, would you quit your job? Yes.
  38. Would you rather have less work to do, or more work you actually enjoy doing? More work that I enjoy doing. Without a doubt.
  39. Do you feel like you’ve lived this day a hundred times before? Unfortunately.
  40. When was the last time you marched into the dark with only the soft glow of an idea you strongly believed in? When we moved to Montana and left everything we’ve ever known behind.
  41. If you knew that everyone you know was going to die tomorrow, who would you visit today? My family and my mother-in-law, my friends in Florida, and Michele in California. Clearly a private jet would be arranged for all of the flying around.
  42. Would you be willing to reduce your life expectancy by 10 years to become extremely attractive or famous? No. There’s more to life.
  43. What is the difference between being alive and truly living? For me, being alive is being conscious, with a sound mind, breathing on your own, and doing what you have to to stay alive. Truly living, to me, is making the most of the opportunities and experiences that you have, feeling, taking in the senses, enjoying your surroundings, and learning from your environment/experiences both good and bad.
  44. When is it time to stop calculating risk and rewards, and just go ahead and do what you know is right? There are always going to be risks and rewards, and I think that it’s good to be aware of them and take them into consideration when making big decisions. Even after a decision is made, being conscious of those things helps to keep things in perspective, but you shouldn’t let them hold you back. I think that when the possible advantages outweigh the disadvantages, it can be good to try something new. What’s the worst that could happen?
  45. If we learn from our mistakes, why are we always so afraid to make a mistake? There are plenty of other ways to learn without making mistakes. It’s true that we often learn from our mistakes, but there are often consequences associated with making a mistake that overshadow the learning experience. People don’t like to be uncomfortable or make others uncomfortable. We are afraid of doing things wrong because we’ve been taught that it’s bad. It’s been ingrained in us to do things right the first time. So, even though we can learn from mistakes, most of us prefer not to make them in the first place.
  46. What would you do differently if you knew nobody would judge you? I try not to let other people’s judgments affect my decision or feelings, but, as we all know, this can be very difficult. I’m not sure I would do a whole lot differently than I’m doing now. It would be nice to know that nobody was judging my decisions. I think it’s best, however, to accept that people are always going have their own judgments and opinion,s and they aren’t always going to coincide with yours. I should listen to myself sometimes.
  47. When was the last time you noticed the sound of your own breathing? Most nights when I try to fall asleep.
  48. What do you love?  Have any of your recent actions openly expressed this love? I love my husband, my family and friends, animals, cooking, food, learning new things, reading, feeling accomplished, writing, and music. I try to express my love for my husband on a daily basis, but that’s easy. I don’t spend nearly enough time fostering my other interests.
  49. In 5 years from now, will you remember what you did yesterday?  What about the day before that?  Or the day before that? Probably not. It’s all so monotonous these days.
  50. Decisions are being made right now.  The question is:  Are you making them for yourself, or are you letting others make them for you? I make my own decisions based on what is necessary for my little family. That doesn’t mean that I love what I’m doing. Making my own practical decisions will always be better than having someone else decide for me.
What are your answers to these questions??? Do you think that your answers will change much over the next year?

Thank you for reading!
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3 responses »

  1. I feel you… having so many interests/things you wanna try… but not doing it. wtf?

    Reply
  2. I got all of it, knew ir, felt it.

    Reply

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