Searching For Balance

Balance. Sometimes, it feels like I spend so much time hanging around the extremes that I forget to stop in the middle. These last few weeks have felt like a non-stop exercise in polarities; I’m either running at full tilt or passed out. I need to find my way back to center because that’s where I function best.

No rest for the wicked...

No rest for the wicked…

 

As a student of Buddhism, I understand that following that Middle Way is the best route to staying grounded. When I allow life to spiral out of control or take on too many things at once, I find myself flying by the seat of my pants. This may feel good to some but for me, a person with extreme anxiety, nothing could be more unsettling. It’s also, counterproductive.

 

Change is good, and learning to adapt to changes is paramount for keeping pace with the inevitable fluidity of life. The trick, for me, lies in rolling with the changes but also keeping my feet on the ground. Herein lies the conundrum.

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Taylor Fulks Talks Audiobooks and GiveAway

Giveaway imageThis is it!

My 2nd Anniversary Blog GiveAway!

Yeah…I know! I can’t believe it! My journey is almost complete…It will officially end May 16th when I run in the #WarriorDash 5K obstacle run to benefit St. Jude’s Children’s Hospital. I’m happy the money is going for that worthy cause, but my reasons for running are selfish, I’m afraid. This book journey has taken me from quiet, subdued, doormat, and transformed me into a Warrior for myself and Sexually Abused Children.

So here it is, two years of social media, my new and improved website, and the revised publication and redistribution of my book, in ALL formats, including an audiobook! Who’d of thunk it! Now it’s time to Celebrate! And this time, I’m doing it right!

So, what do you have to do to be entered in this Rafflecopter Giveaway? Just leave a comment and share this post (Facebook, Twitter, etc…). Easy-peasy!

You don’t have to wax poetic. You don’t even have to say anything…you can leave an * or an emoji, or any (clean) text you want. You’ll automatically be entered in my Giveaway, which by the way, is HUGE!

First prize…A 7″ HD~8GB Kindle Fire

Second prize… A $100 Amazon Gift Card

Third prize… A $50 Amazon Gift Card

Fourth prize… A $25 Amazon Gift Card

So…Let’s do this!

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Who Dropped The Clutter Bomb?

Home is where the heart is or in my case, the mess. Our space should tell our story; who we are, things we love, where we’ve been, and where we’re headed. I enjoy my house. It’s filled with the things that keep me grounded, make me smile, fuel my creativity, and quiet my head. Currently, I’m living in a house that looks like a war zone, and my OCD world has crumbled around me. The bomb that was detonated came in the form of my commitment to meet a deadline. That pesky manuscript that has been sitting on my desk, and whirling around in my head, is finally being finished. I dove in headfirst, full speed ahead, and everything around me has turned to shit. I suppose this means that I’m actually getting something accomplished, right?

Stay the course...

Stay the course…

 

I used to laugh at the status updates from people who raised the white flag and surrendered to cohabiting with clutter. Today I am coming out, again, but this time—as a slob. Temporary? Absolutely. However, I am shocked and appalled at how quickly I’ve lost control of, well, everything. I am one person with two small dogs, one of whom doesn’t even go outside. How the hell did life go from a calm, orderly existence to mayhem—in a month? Here’s my personal freefall into chaos, courtesy of a funnel cloud of questionable origin.

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The Message of the Semicolon

I’m a fan of tattoos mostly because everyone has a story, and body art is simply another means by which we share our journey. Although I may appear to be a mixed bag of random colors and images with an arbitrary theme, I promise this is not the case. I like large, colorful tattoos so I tend to choose pieces that put it all out there for the world to see. Think big, bold, and screaming the obvious. However, there are also the small, unassuming ones that fill the gaps but also hold deep meaning. The art that covers my body is how I choose to memorialize the most important moments of my life. It shows where I’ve been, who I am, what I believe, and hopefully—where I’m going. The story is there, inked into my dermis as a permanent reminder of all the paths I’ve taken. Good. Bad. Everything. The large images are the ones that attract the most attention but some of the smallest are the ones that hold the most meaning. Allow me to explain.

Go big or go home...

Go big or go home…

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My Eulogy

My parents have a bizarre tendency for not telling me when people have passed away. For instance, my cousin died this summer and they waited two weeks to tell me. They casually slipped it in a random conversation we were having about a yard sale. I don’t even know how you make that leap, but they did. The same thing happened when my uncle passed but that time, they waited over a month. When my grandmother died, they had a memorial service six-months later, and forgot to invite me. Weird. This trend caused me to consider my own inevitable demise because I wonder how many people they would leave off my guest list. Assuming there was even a service. I also worry that I could be buried in one of my mother’s favorite dresses, and she would absolutely forget to wax my upper lip. I’ve decided to take matters into my own hands by launching preemptive strikes. I’m making my own arrangements, which includes being cremated, and tossed in the Ganges. Today, I’ll start with my eulogy because I’m sure my parents don’t know me well enough to write any of this on their own. Welcome to my party.

Not dead...

Not dead…

 

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Beyond The Comfort Zone

 

“You better check yourself before you wreck yourself.”~ Ice Cube

 

I’ve spent the last few weeks deeply enmeshed in my revisions. I also inadvertently went too far down the rabbit hole without allocating sufficient recovery time. The result was that I resurfaced in a frazzled state featuring the dreaded combination of depression and anxiety. I was on a roll. The content was flowing, which also caused my sleep cycles to become erratic but hey, who am I to argue with the writing gods? Ultimately, I realized that I have to remember that I’m human. No more. No less. Shit happens but I can’t run the risk of riding an emotional roller coaster brought on by sleep deprivation, and an abundance of caffeine. I have a tendency to paint myself into virtual corners, and when that occurs, I definitely benefit from a mental health tune-up. That being said, this week’s post is a way to cut myself, and my head, some slack. I’ve decided to step away from the trigger-loaded manuscript, and instead, lighten up. Let’s roll.

Can cause hallucinations when consumed in excess...

Can cause hallucinations when consumed in excess…

 

 

“Life begins at the end of your comfort zone.” ~ Neale Donald Walsch

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Feeling Crazy? Go With It…

‘Crazy is a term of art; ‘Insane’ is a term of law. Remember that, and you will save yourself a lot of trouble.” ~Hunter S. Thompson

 

I’m down with crazy. Hell, I thrive in the midst of the chaos that whirls around in my head. What used to leave me feeling anxious, and scared, now makes me feel alive. Inspired. However, left unchecked, it can also allow me to become distracted. I am fortunate to be surrounded by other creative folks who understand how to embrace their own funnel clouds, and transform them into something meaningful. I spent far too many years trying to analyze, manage, and suppress the cyclonic thoughts whipping through my head. I’ve since stopped, and now, I wear my craziness as I do my heart—on my sleeve.

Ok, so it's on my leg, not my sleeve.

Ok, so this one’s on my leg— not my sleeve.

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Finding Novelty In The Ordinary

A few months ago, I had a conversation with a friend about why it is that we continually seek all that is new. Who doesn’t relish the novelty of a new car, puppy, home, challenge, experience or relationship? The question I posed was: why is it that humans find it challenging to sustain our passion for projects, people, and love, once the novelty has worn off? Her position, especially as it pertained to relationships, was that it is impossible to sustain the level of emotional energy required when something or someone first piques our interest. Although I understood her point, and to some degree, agreed with its validity, I argued the opposite. I believe that we owe it to ourselves to find the uniqueness in life, and love. Every. Single. Day.

Always fluid...

Always fluid…

 

When I think about my own life: experiences, loves, loss, missed opportunities, and marginal successes, I still cling to my shred of optimism for not losing the ability to find novelty in the ordinary. There are times when I feel the walls closing in, sensory perceptions are muted, and black is the theme of the day. For me, these are also the moments where creativity is born. Those of us who feel compelled to unearth what lies beyond the obvious know that times of claustrophobic awareness can be our cues to tumble down the rabbit hole. Scary? Absolutely. However, beauty lies in the hint of our ability to discover the infinite possibilities.

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Girls Don’t Do That…

I’ve made no secret about the fact that I rarely leave my house. However, when I do tempt fate and venture beyond my comfort zone, I drag with me a looming fear that disaster can strike without notice. Let’s put aside for a moment my plethora of social anxieties, which I have openly shared in previous blogs—I’ve learned to live with those. However, I’ve recently discovered a new, and more worrisome issue: I lack the knowledge to perform many basic life skills. This eye-opener drove my semi-unbalanced mental state right up to code red. Full-panic mode.

Man magnet...

Man magnet…

 

My father never wanted a daughter—correction—he never wanted children. Regardless of whether or not he wanted a daughter, hello—he has one. The situation is compounded by the fact that he is also a proud, and vocal, male chauvinist. He’s the kind who believes that women should be barefoot and pregnant, working in the kitchen, and never, ever have the ability to fend for themselves. His body may be in the year 2015 but his mindset is trapped in 1950. Obviously, he isn’t the most forward-thinking individual, which leads us back to me—his life-skills-challenged daughter.

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This Is My Thing…Guest Post by Christy Barongan

This week I’d like to welcome Christy Barongan to the blog. As the first guest post of 2015, I’m thrilled to have a writer who shares using both honesty and humor. Christy has chosen to write about a challenging and important topic. Self-acceptance. I’d like to thank Christy for agreeing to share her post, speak her truth, and offer us plenty to think about as we begin a new week. Please check out her links below so you can connect with her on her own website and various social media accounts. Enjoy.

Be kind to yourself...

Be kind to yourself…

 

There is a constant war in my head between my Inner Critic (IC) and the Obsessive Me (OM). Every day they argue like an old married couple that can no longer stand each other but stay together for convenience. Well, it’s more like IC yells and OM obsesses.

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