As always, one of my favorite traditions on Kayture is to do a big yearly recap each first month of the year. It’s a nice way to look back on all the achievements, the growth, the experiences, dive back into some heart warming memories, acknowledge the difficulties, challenges, struggles and understand how they’ve participated to grow the strength and wisdom that we’ve gathered throughout our journey… I can only encourage anyone to take a minute to do that. It’s a beautiful moment where you realize what a long way you’ve come. Once someone told me, you should never compare yourself to others. You should only compare yourself to the person you were yesterday.
I believe that in life everything is a matter of perspective. We can choose to see failure as a weight pulling us down or as a learning lesson instead. We can choose to grow from it or get stuck. The same goes for success. Success can cause damage too. It can eat you up entirely but it can also make you more generous and willing to lift others higher up with you. Everything is a matter of how you decide to see and react on things. So when you look back on your year, be kind on yourself. And remember, it’s all a matter of perspective. Your struggles, weren’t they to make you stronger, prepared for what’s to come? Your pains, weren’t they to prepare you for a bigger, more important battle? Aren’t all these experiences, good and bad, there to make us who we are? And aren’t we all an infinity of choices and points of view?
I might be a big dreamer, an irrational optimist, but I like to think that so far, it’s been doing me good. I always prefer to see my glass half full that half empty. I have hope in life, in people, in me. It’s a mental orientation that I’ve worked on, grown and nurtured from within for years. It allows me to see the bright side of any situation, approach life with a certain sense of clarity. What’s wonderful about it is that it makes everything easier to live with. It soothes the soul in any situation because your mind becomes a reassuring figure saying that “it’s okay, it’ll all be okay”. It’s an invincible part of us all and the most precious gift we’ve all been given. This voice is your temple for life. It’s called mind. Our consciousness. It’s a friend that I’ll be there for you forever. But it can also turn into your worst enemy if you treat it incorrectly.
Never underestimate the power of the mind. Our minds are stronger and more powerful that you might think, capable of the most incredible things. Everything happens for a reason and with reason. And I believe that it is all a matter of laws of attraction. The more positivity you project, the more positivity you’ll attract. And that doesn’t mean that nothing negative will ever happen to you, it’s how you bounce back from it that I’ll say a lot about yourself and eventually shape your future.
Think about your life as a chain of reactions. Each word, each movement, each step, each thought having infinite repercussions through space and time. Now think about it, don’t you want to put the best of you out there in the universe? And doesn’t it feel so good to know that no matter what, you’ve tried your best? I personally don’t like using the word “best” as it often puts even more pressure on our shoulders. It’s a comparative that can make us feel at battle not only with others but especially with ourselves. Fighting our own demons, our own contradictions, our lack of motivation or ambition that are holding us back. What I mean by being the best version of yourself is just purely being yourself. Fully, unapologetically, completely. It’s this idea of being compassionate to yourself, kind to yourself and especially have faith in yourself. In the hardest, darkest times of our lives, when it’s painful to even listen to the advice of others, you’ll be grateful beyond words for a caring voice inside yourself that won’t let you down. Because in the end, your mind is the only thing that’ll be there with you, for you, until the very last second of your life.
So how much in life is left for us to decide and how much of it is already predetermined somewhere up there in what’s called destiny? Are we the ones shaping our paths or are we suffering the repercussions of life and situations? How much are people’s decisions, wether it’s our friends or society’s affecting our own living? Are we actually that free to make our own choices? I would argue that the only place where we are truly ever free is our mind. So if you try to limit your mind, that’s where you take away from your only possible, real, existing freedom. Freedom, by nature isn’t supposed to have limits.
With all of this being said, it might seem like I had a very psychologically intense year… I wouldn’t put it that way although I wouldn’t entirely deny it either. Like we said it’s all a matter of perspective, remember? So actually, I would say that I had one of the most incredible years of my life. Simply because it has been the hardest, most challenging one so far.
There are lots of things you know about me, and lots you don’t. Lots of things my friends know about be, and lots they don’t. There are even things they know about me, that I don’t. And in the middle of all this, figuring out who we are seems like a riddle. So instead we let ourselves live through the eyes of others. Their perception is our validation. But is it an authentic reflection of ourselves?
2016 was a year of big shifts for me. I felt like I was slowly evolving into someone I’ve never been before, with personality traits I’ve never had to deal with in the past… My thoughts were going into new places I had never explored. All of a sudden, I became attracted by this foggy path within my mind that started to appear like this frightening, unexplored piece of land I’ve always been afraid to walk on. I needed to understand where these clouds came from, to clear them up. For so long, I was so scared to even look at them. But there I was. I had gathered enough courage to step into the fog and allow myself loose. There were so many things inside myself I haven’t dealt with, places I haven’t gone, questions I haven’t truly asked myself. I had to go in completely if I wanted to be whole again.
Because I’ve always been such a positive person my whole life, I refrained often from exploring my darkness, from understanding too much about my pains or thinking too much about the nature my sadness. In fact, I kept myself away from feeling sad remembering that being sad is again giving into a perspective. But sometimes, you need to let your heart go and feel what it needs to feel to be strong again. You need to be able to embrace these pure authentic emotions coming along as part of your wide and infinite being and not stop them from naturally manifesting themselves if they do. I felt like for all these years I was this one sided character and my curiosity to explore this sudden new pathway kept growing on me. A pathway that in fact, wasn’t even that new. It’s just that I chose not to pay attention to it, I forbid myself from acknowledging it. Mainly by fear of discovering something about myself I wouldn’t like. Something that would completely change everything I felt like I was, or change everything I believed in.
So when I fully gave into it, it felt like opening a window during a sand storm and letting your whole living room get covered with dust. I had let in so much self doubt that I began questioning everything around me. All the emotions I was keeping on lock for so long suddenly burst out of me like a waterfall. I couldn’t pull myself back to who I used to be anymore. Or at least who I thought I used to be. When you see something, you can’t just un-see it. This “it” being as abstract and intangible as a new thought, a point of view, an idea that compromises the entire perception you had of something… Nothing was technically supposed to make me sad. If anything, I had all the reasons in the whole wide world to be happy like a bird. But there are moments when happiness just isn’t a matter of external situations, it’s a matter of your internal world going being shook. It’s like being in a crowded room and feeling alone. It’s irrational, but still very much real.
I couldn’t understand for a very long time what was going on with me. I was putting an interrogation point on everything. Myself, my life, my work… It got to a point where I was questioning everything so much that I was completely loosing track of myself, just like wandering around in fog, stumbling upon rocks and rocks that only made my ship sink deeper and deeper into being completely submerged. And the more it kept going, the further carried away I felt. It’s like diving into the darkness of an ocean and being so deep that it feels like you’ll never see the light again, or even breath again. All these questions just kept bringing up new ones up and it felt like I would never find answers.
Never in my whole life did I ever feel so lost. But never in my life, had I ever let go as much either. What was scaring me at first, and what felt like a storm was me actually experiencing the freedom of my mind for the very first time. No boundaries, no walls, just infinity. I realized that for all these years, I had locked myself up in a golden cage. A cage that was certainly comforting and reassuring but terribly limiting. A cage of perceptions : the perception I felt like people had of me, or didn’t have of me. The perception I wanted them to have. The perception I had of myself… I was letting others define who I was and I was happy with it. I was happy to make people happy and be what they wanted me to be. I was trying so hard to put words onto who I was, be whoever, whatever anyone wanted me to be that I confined myself within my own perception of who I needed to be to please others.
One of the hardest parts about today’s culture is that nobody really takes the time anymore. To read, to get to know people in depth, to think, to question… We are so quick to judge everything. And eventually we lock ourselves up in our own judgements.
Our quest to understanding who we truly are is one the most difficult challenges we’ll ever have to face. But always remember that in the end, all it is, all that really matters is as simple as that :
You are right now, and you were before and you will be forever you. You are alive, with a consciousness and a power to make decisions. Without even trying or thinking, you simply already are. Because thinking is already applying perception thus trying to define yourself as something. And those who are simply themselves don’t need to see themselves through others. They just know. They feel. They are unapologetic about themselves, their flaws such as their strengths. But being yourself, entirely and completely, is also coming to peace with your demons, confronting your fears, wearing your vulnerability with pride. When you aren’t afraid of yourself anymore, that’s when you are truly free. It’s like building a relationship with you own self : your can be you worst enemy but you can also be your best friend and best advisor. If only you trust yourself.
One of the few things that truly helped me through this whole experiences was writing. Keeping track of this progression through the void. It was the only thing that made me feel like I was breathing again. That gave these emotions their purpose. Through writing, I felt like I needed to be nothing more, nothing less than simply myself. Songwriting itself was an even more intense experience under such circumstances. Songs are like rivers flowing out of the infinite ocean that is our mind. They flow into one direction such as they focus on one story, one emotion in specific. Once I am done with a song, it’s like coming to peace with the story itself.
Sometimes we’re living life on auto-pilot, not knowing the purpose of all our buttons and triggers. That’s why sometimes, we have to loose ourselves, to find ourselves.
After all, each day we are new. In fact I am not even that same person I was a minute ago because I just laid down this sentence. Each second we grow. Even on a biological level, we keep creating new cells on and on. And that is the beauty and mysterious magic of life : each day is an opportunity to look at the world with fresh eyes. Nothing should ever feel boring or old. In fact nothing gets old or boring, maybe we simply aren’t curious or creative enough to see it?
There’s something reassuring about the idea of a box, about knowing exactly what you got, how much you got of it, how far you can go, where the limits are. The idea of universe itself is a very frightening concept for many. It’s so wide, infinite, intangible, shapeless… An abstraction that even the best researchers can’t fully get a grasp of. We don’t have a visual reference for infinity while most of us can visualize a box very clearly. But we are indeed infinities within ourselves. And that’s why some say we are the universe and the universe is us. Our consciousness is limitless, so profound and so beautiful. It is so big that some of us are frightened by it. Scared of it’s grandeur. Scared because we don’t know how to control it, confused because it’s going all over place. So we try to find a way to confine it and mold it into something more tangible, with words and perceptions. That’s what society helps us do each day. Because dealing with thousands and millions of infinities and universes at the same time is too hard. However, very little political governments have succeeded at creating a format that made everyone happy. Because you can’t limit or try to shape what’s limitless and shapeless. It’ll keep bursting out. And so it did, and so it does, and so it will.
You don’t have to be a realist to be unrealistic at times, claim to hate horror movies to enjoy one some day, only like blondes to end up falling for a red head… These are all ideas that confine ourselves to remain same. A same reassuring figure for ourselves, and for others. By never changing our routines, never letting a new thought enter our mind with fear that it might compromise our entire system, we show weakness. We protect our comfort and security by shutting down ourselves. Because leaving the door open is taking the risk for strangers to come in, for undesired things to step into a system we’ve put so much care into orchestrating correctly. By doing so, we abandon the opportunity for newer, better things to enter as well. I do believe that those who aren’t afraid of leaving their door a bit open, though they might get disturbed at times, will learn and experience much more of life than those who keep themselves on lock. That doesn’t mean we shouldn’t protect ourselves. We shouldn’t shield ourselves. A shield so big we can’t see the world anymore isn’t worth it.
You guys probably expected this article to be a big recap of all the trips, beautiful events, glorious achievements and so on… But this time I felt like doing things a bit differently. Because I think bigger than the experiences themselves, it’s what we learn and discover from them that truly stands out and expands our thinking. So never be afraid to swim freely and dive completely into yourself. If you never get lost, you’ll never learn know how to find your way. I couldn’t have learned as much as I did this year if I kept following a safety road… I found so many answers but furthermore, I found so many new questions to ask myself. I even learned to appreciate the questions more than the answers themselves. Because how terrible would life be if we already knew everything? What would be the point of waking up each morning?
I receive a lot of messages all over my social media from people asking me for advice. Advice on how to make their dreams come true, how to make it happen. The only advice I can give you is to look inside first. All the answers lie within yourself. If there’s something you really want, you will find a way to make it happen, no matter what. You have to have hope, you have to believe in yourself and you have to feel invincible, limitless, unstoppable. Most of us already know what to do, but we are waiting for other people’s approval or guidance to take a step. As if there was a magic formula that could just be applied onto anyone. Sadly, or rather luckily, there isn’t one. So the question is what really stops you? More often that never, you are the only one that is. So go on and give yourself the keys to make it and don’t let anything hold you back.
With this being said, I wish you all the most amazing, the most grasping new year. May 2017 bring you love, joy, happiness, strength and wisdom. May the sun never shine twice the same way, may it never rain the same again. May you wake up each day new and completely fearless, ready to explore the unlimited possibilities the world has to offer. Because today is today, and yesterday is different from tomorrow. Because you are infinity and that’s what being free really means.