Mediocrity

Mediocre’s all I can shoot for right now.
Not what I consider to be mediocre,
but:
the standard mediocrity,
the dead average,
the passing grade.

 

I will never be satisfied with what I do;
I will never be good enough.
With my ever soaring standards, I will always
— and only —
be chasing achievements.
I will always find the faults;
I will always be a failure.

 

I admire those who use that to their advantage
and escalate their accomplishments.
Instead of motivation,
I’m bogged down by it
and unable to function.
All I can aim for right now is to
just get it over and done with.

And even that is a hurdle.

 

Moon Bear

I once met a bear named Shoelace,
Who had a crescent under his adorable face.
He was only a cub
And just like a pup
He was always keen to play and embrace.

 

He would gnaw on my fingers and toes,
And he would climb up then stick out his nose.
With his playful eyes
That hypnotise
And nuzzled into how many hearts? — Who knows.

 

Ten precious days I spent with him,
Giving in to his every fancy and whim.
Almost ten years since
I’ve seen the prince
How quickly time flies — its grim.

 

His life was harsh; too soon, he lost his mother.
Mistreated and emaciated, he hadn’t any fur.
But he bounced back quick
And became energetic
He was a mischievous pudge like no other.

 

Like a toddler, he wanted to play all day,
Even when he was fighting off sleep and nodding away.
Once, he rolled over
And fell, mid-slumber
He was dazed, but got back up at once anyway.

 

I wonder how big and strong he must now be,
From that little bundle of joy in my memory.
Perhaps one day soon
During a full moon
I’ll visit him not just in dreams but in reality.

 

A Bad Dream

Animals from videos I watched recently visited me in a dream, but not in a pleasant way.

There were frantic struggles and shrieks. They were in agonising pain and couldn’t escape. The woman inflicting pain on them laughed at their cries of distress. There was a complete disconnect from their suffering. I couldn’t help; I was merely an observer of the ordeal. I could do nothing but watch the horror unfold.

I managed to save one. I huddled it close, trying to soothe and calm it down. Its eyes were wide with terror; its fur was matted with blood. I tried to communicate nonverbally that it was safe now, that it needn’t be afraid of me, that not all humankind had to be feared, that I was taking it to the hospital.

Enneagram-speak

I am an enneagram type 5. An INTJ 5.

The 2w1 held me back. I relied on the 2w1. We don’t see eye to eye and there are frequent misunderstandings. I seem able to understand them more than they can understand me, despite numerous explanations.

The 9 numbed their emotions and only allowed explosive anger to surface.

The 4s… it never ended well. I’m always intrigued by 4s and feel like I have a lot to learn from them. They don’t seem particularly fond of the 5’s ways. They get nervous and surprised that I observe and read them well. I get nervous when they observe and read my emotions well, but incredibly frustrated when they misread me otherwise. I watch and learn from them from afar.

The 8s try to dominate at first. When they realise that although I’m quiet, I hold my ground, there’s a nod of respect between our “inner tigers”. They give unsolicited life advice and then get surprised when I’m more intelligent than they think.

The 2w3 is an instant turn-off, for both sides.

The 7s write me off as dumb and stupid at first. When they hear me speak, they realise otherwise and start to get intrigued. They become invasive and follow me around like puppies. (And perhaps this is how the 4s perceive me.)

I knew a fellow 5 before. We clicked instantly. We shared the same views and agreed on the important concepts, but were the opposites in all other areas and aspects. I didn’t know this back then, but our MBTI cognitive functions differed. It didn’t last long.

Privacy and Intrusions

Privacy is something I prize highly. Deliberate intrusiveness is what I despise. It is offensive and disrespectful. Perhaps exacerbated by social anxiety, I find even minute things immensely invasive.

Windows. They allow people to peer into my personal space, to watch me in my private moments. Bare windows make me feel exposed. Open doors impinge on my privacy and safety. Walking past them is like being thrown into the spotlight center stage, naked. They don’t understand how badly it affects me. Hidden behind curtains and a locked door, I still feel unsafe and vulnerable.

They ask for my name, where I live, my personal information. These questions aren’t asked merely out of curiosity or idle chitchat. There’s something malicious about them that I can sense. There are hidden agendas, judgemental attitudes. I don’t see why I should share my personal details with them. I don’t see how they’ve earned the privilege to gain access to such information. I try to escape as quickly as I can from those conversations, and I distance myself from those people.

Perhaps it’s the people that’s the matter. If people who I’m partial to ask me such questions, I’m alright with them and perceive them to be innocent questions asked out of genuine curiosity. The anxiety is still there though as I worry about how they’ll perceive me. If it’s people whom I do not like, my guard immediately shoots up and I feel like they’re trespassing the boundaries.

They peek into my bag when I open it. They peep at my phone when I use it. The more I withdraw and pull away from them, the more they want to know and the more they invade. My annoyance spikes immediately and I get even more short with them. They do not comprehend.

Thus, I retreat.

Mind Your Language

Amusing conversations with a foreign student (paraphrased):

 

Me: ……committed to your work.

Foreign student: Is this same meaning like relationship? Commitment relationship?

Me: A committed relationship, yes. Which means you only have one girlfriend — you focus on one — and not have other girlfriends.

Foreign student: Okay, I know. Understand. (nods head) ………But who am I committed to at work?

Me: (chuckles uncontrollably)

Foreign student: (sees my reaction and chuckles)

Me: Good question.

 

Foreign student: The pastor… the priest wears black… and he have big bird — long bird.

Me: ???…… Oh! Beard.

 

Me: How are you going to promote it?

Foreign student: I will help to promote it… mouth-to-mouth.

 

Foreign student: I’m over my client. Above my client? Over my client.

Me: (laughs) Do you mean you’re watching over your client?

Foreign student: (blushes and laughs)

 

I’m walking in Mr. Brown‘s shoes!

Anxiety or Attraction?

How does one distinguish between the feelings of anxiousness and the feelings of attraction to someone?

(What attraction entails exactly is a whole other topic; I’m mainly focusing on the differentiation between anxiety and attraction in this post.)

The misattribution of arousal is the phenomenon of misattributing one’s physiological symptoms of arousal to a wrong stimulus.

A rapid heartbeat caused by anxiety, for instance, may be incorrectly perceived as an effect of feeling attracted to another individual, and vice versa. As someone who’s socially anxious, how, then, do I determine the difference between them?

Both situations involve a heightened state of stress, arousal, and awareness with similar physiological symptoms. It is uncomfortable and I do not like it. I spend a lot of precious time and energy in trying to reduce my symptoms of anxiety. It is a rare treat when I’m able to relax without any anxiousness. I intentionally avoid situations and activities that intensify those sensations. Engaging in things like exercise resembles too closely to anxiety — the perspiration, heat, flushed cheeks, elevated heart rate, shortness of breath, tensed muscles, body aches, and the exhaustion.

The intensity of the symptoms could be an indicator of attraction, but couldn’t that also be an indicator of intense anxiety?