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Understanding Who I Am: Lessons Learned

Ione Stevens obtained her bachelor's degree in English in 2016. She is now a library assistant for Stratford University.

Crashing into a writer's block can be both frustrating and downright annoying. For 2 weeks after my last article, I picked my brain for new subjects to write about. Three, incomplete drafts later, I threw in the towel because I knew exactly what I needed.


I know when to step away and regroup. A writer's mind is filled with endless ideas and chaos. It's up to us to figure where a story is going to go and how it's going to end. Sometimes, an unfinished idea is simply a bad idea.

During this much needed break, I learned quite a few characteristics about myself and others. Some good and some bad. See for yourself!

You're not going to be liked by some and you simply shouldn't give a s***!


In some aspects, I have always known this to be true. Why should we care so much about how others see us? If they don't pay my bills, feed my family, or wash my son's Lego Batman undies, then how are their opinions relevant to me? Simple, they're not! The saddest part is how you could be the kindest person in the world and someone will still think negatively of you.

Lesson Learned:

If you don't personally know me, then your opinions are smaller than fiction. I don't need someone's approval of who I am. I'm not flawless; I have my downfalls, but I own them. Perfection is overrated and I don't see it coming back in style either. So, if you have some sort of issue with who you THINK I am, save yourself the headache. Honey, I'm not here to entertain your 'thoughts' of me. You can leave.

A 40 year old woman with a Regina George NOT a good look!


If the film Mean Girls did anything right, it was their representation of the Queen B in high school. I'm not talking about her beauty. This goes far beyond her outward appearance. It's her attitude and how she believes the world revolves around her. Regina George is the girl in your class who randomly compliments you one day, when you're not even close to being in her 'circle'. She's going to smile as the compliment rolls off her tongue, but it's the sarcasm behind it that will make you question her. Regina may befriend you in the beginning, but eventually you'll be left wondering what the hell made her snap!

Back to my point, don't be a middle-aged woman with this attitude. As a matter of fact, don't be Regina George EVER! It's not all about you and it sure as hell isn't all about ME. The sooner you can accept this, the sooner you'll reach the mentality of an adult.

Lesson Learned:

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I don't need to associate with the Regina George's of the world. And I certainly don't need to become one either. I'd rather have no friends than to have an army of psychotic, attention seekers who are ready to stir up the s*** pot. No thanks.

You don't have to scream your accomplishments. If it's important, it'll make an impact on its own!


I'm all for achieving our goals and overcoming obstacles. Hell, I'll be the first to say 'Congrats' if you're making a positive difference! But at some point in our lives, we will know a person who needs recognition for their so-called triumphs. They'll be the ones who say they've been here and done that. I'm not here to keep tally on your 'good deeds' because I don't grant good karma. I'm not equipped to listen to your insecurity disguised as a lifetime achievement speech; you're going to need a therapist for that.

Lesson Learned:

If I don't feel like praising someone for the victories they boast about, then so be it. You're obviously not worried about what I'm doing with my life. Who said I should worry about yours?

If you have to watch what you say, then why bother talking to them?!


I think, we as humans, tend to forget that we don't have to be social ALL THE TIME. In fact, I'm my happiest at home with my family or out with a friend. A huge turn-off for me is someone who only listens to speak. I've been listening to understand and, to be frank, it's one of the best changes I've ever made! In the real world, I can exchange pleasantries like a pro. However, that's as far as I'll go. I'm not interested in talking to someone who doesn't listen to understand. If you're only here to talk about yourself and others, then consider this my grand exit. Anything I say to you will be passed down to the next person you bore. Move along.

Lesson Learned:

I don't need to socialize with people who have zero interest in having real conversations. If all you talk about is what other people have told you, just stop! You are giving them power over you, no matter how good or bad you speak of them.

Pretending to care about something or someone is a waste. It's okay NOT to care!


Call me cynical or inconsiderate, but guess what? I don't care what you call me! We're constantly told that life is too short and that we need to live it up while we still can. Then we become actual adults and start doing adult things. Like working a full-time job. Paying that ridiculously high electric bill every month. Or raising little humans that grow up to be just as stubborn and sarcastic as we are. We wanted to be grown ups, but I don't think we were ever mentally prepared for it. Back to my point, why are doing things we don't care for? Why are we still friends with that uptight, self-centered prick? Why did we just sign up to take part in a community yard sale? Why did we agree to provide all the food for an event? If you ever find yourself asking why you're doing it, then maybe you didn't really want to from the get go!

Lesson Learned:

If I don't care enough to go through with it, then I'm not going to do it. This doesn't make me selfish or cruel. I know what makes me happy and so does my family. Stressing to the MAX turns me into a fire-breathing dragon. It's hard to be happy with your life if you're continuously doing things you don't care for. Maybe I'm an introvert at heart or maybe I just know whats best for me and my family? Either way, I don't need to fill my life chaos to thoroughly enjoy it. In the end, the little things become the big things and I find comfort in knowing that I have PLENTY of room for them.

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