Don't Stop At "I'm Fine"

Don't Stop At "I'm Fine"

Are you really?
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We live in a world that is losing emotions. It is not okay to share your feelings. It is weird to stop and talk to someone. It is just polite to ask them, "How are you?" Then it is a burden if they have a different answer than "I'm fine." What if they aren't "fine"? But we just let them walk by.

Many TV shows have been talking about mental illnesses and suicide, and the scary thing is we do not live in those screens. I have not personally known anyone that has taken their own life, but I have known souls that tempted. It hurt me to think they wanted to end their life when they always had a smile on their face. They always said hello to me and always made me laugh. Society makes us throw things under the rug. We live in a society that is hiding our emotions and putting masks on in person. We are only commuting through social media and believing everyone else just has this amazing filtered life. We are trying to put on the best face for others to see. We are all struggling in a certain aspect. We are all trying to be a part of groups just to be accepted.

I have been trying to talk to more to people. Not this:

"How are you?"

"I'm fine."

"That's good."

This is not communication. This is small talk to just get through the hallway. I want to know how your grandmother is doing. I want to know what how your day is going. I want to know what your goals are for this week. I want to know if that's your favorite shirt. I want to know how your sports team is doing. I want to know I want to know if you're taking care of yourself.

I want to let you know you're not alone in your struggle this week. I want you to know things will get better, and life has a funny way of working out. Don't think emotions will be a burden. Know it is okay if you're not "fine." Don't bottle it up, it only gets worse.

I want to see a society where we ask real questions and make real connections. I want to see the world of social creatures being social again. I wish to see these people that feel alone, walking with their head up, hand in hand with their true friends. I wish to people to take just a few minutes out of their day to care for another person.

Maybe someone is just "fine." Maybe they don't want to stay long to talk. It's understandable. But we let these people walk around with their heads down and tears in their eyes and they reply with "I'm fine." We need to stop watching these people walk by. We are all on this planet fighting different battles. Give someone a few minutes a day. Talk to one another. Make a connection. Feel something.

Cover Image Credit: Pixabay

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You Can Still Get Homesick While Having The Time Of Your Life

Not every moment has to be fun and glamorous.

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We often look at college life and study abroad and backpacking trips on other people's Instagrams and see all the fun they're having and all the friends they're making. This is especially the case with study abroad, when these people seem to travel to a new place every weekend and live their absolute best lives. As a result, when we embark on these trips ourselves, there is often a disparity between expectation and reality that can majorly affect you both physically and mentally.

It's important to understand that even if you're meeting new people every day and exploring a new country every week and living out your dreams, there will still be days where you feel like you just want to go home to your group of friends and hangout at the local boba shops or sit with your family at home and just watch TV while fighting over the remote. While you're absorbing all these new and wonderful things around you while abroad, your body will yearn for something familiar, comfortable and secure. And that would be your life at home.

You may feel the need to just stay in your apartment for 2 days straight and binge watch YouTube or call every single one of your friends back home just to catch up. Or you may end up revisiting pictures from the past and salivate over the Korean BBQ trips you took back at home and get intense urges to eat food from home. There's absolutely nothing wrong with feeling like this. In fact, a good way to help appease these feelings are to search for the cuisine that you're craving for in your city, and go out of your way to eat it just to get that familiarity back. I have found myself at Asian restaurants and bubble tea shops in Paris more often than I ever was at home, and while others may consider this as a waste of time and that I should be experiencing only French food, it's a really good way to appease those feelings of homesickness. Trust me, the moment you take that first bite of beef noodle soup, you'll feel much, much better.

This isn't to say that you should only stick to the familiar even in a new city. Explore as much as possible and be open to trying new things, but every once in a while, when those feelings of homesickness hit, don't feel bad about buying that boba or starting that 3-hour long video call. After all, you can't have the time of your life if you don't take care of your mental health in the process.

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