Here’s a post that nobody asked for, and i’m pretty sure nobody really wanted, but I’m writing it anyways, because I’ve just got so many random thoughts running through my head recently and I needed to put them down somewhere. So, my blog has become the outlet.
A lot has gone down around me these last few weeks, life has been chaotic, so much so that I haven’t had time to just sit down, relax, and watch Anime in quite a while. I’m still working on polishing off the last of the Winter season, so I won’t be getting around to my Spring first impressions for a bit now. It’s crazy how a week or two of chaos can throw you so far off schedule, and i’m even missing sleep just trying to catch up on stuff now.
Anxiety and Depression
I know a lot of bloggers have talked about this recently, but as i’ve been struggling a lot myself lately, I want to talk a bit about it. Work, socializing, bills, scheduling, even blogging and doing the things you enjoy can sometimes act as a stressor, bringing slowly but surely rising levels of anxiety along with it. And when the levels get too high, your mind starts to shut down, your body goes into fight-or-flight response mode.
Panic mode, as I like to refer to it, is a hard hitter. It comes on quickly if anxiety isn’t controlled, and can create feelings from sickness to headaches to blank-mindedness to feelings of terror. It’s affected my life a lot the past few weeks, and it sucks. Those of you who’ve experienced anxiety, the feeling of being overwhelmed by obligations and expectations, will probably understand where i’m coming from.
Depression often comes hand-in-hand with anxiety. unable to approach the expectation of those around you, feelings of inadequacy, of low self-worth, come creeping up. You start to doubt yourself, your own abilities, the talents and skills you’ve honed and trained, and pride yourself in, now seeming like chains that drag you further into the darkness.
It’s a scary thing to deal with, and when combined with anxiety, threatens to completely overwhelm your consciousness. Having very recently had to talk several friends out of suicide situations, and having been near there myself before, the terror and fear that can arise from such a situation is absolutely not worth underestimating.
But don’t underestimate the little things, either. A little smile, a friendly wave. An acknowledgement of their existence in a bit of small talk or a compliment. An occasional message, just asking how they’re doing. Sometimes, just knowing that people care, that people know and respect the person that you are, can make a world of difference. I know it has for me.
Work vs Hobbies
Sometimes, we find things we like to do in life. Doesn’t matter what it is, everyone has a hobby or two. Whether it be reading, watching anime, playing sports or video games, collecting pretty rocks, cards, etc. Everyone has something they enjoy. When we find something we enjoy, we think, maybe we’d like to do that more. To go beyond what I was doing before. To make something out of that little hobby.
Often though, when trying to do something with that hobby, it starts to feel more like “work” than a hobby… you start to lose the spark. Heaven knows it happens to me all the time, whether it be my blog, my novel writing, video games, or anything else, really. Sometimes it can be really hard to just take a step back and find your center, and your enjoyment, again.
Honestly, that’s part of the reason why my posting schedule is relatively irregular. Sometimes, between the stress of life and my job, I just don’t want to feel like i’m obligated to push out content on my blog; I’d rather everything I write be from the heart, coming from a place of true enjoyment and love of the medium, rather than a feeling of obligation to create content. It’s more fun for me that way, and I feel it helps me create the best content possible for my readers as well, even if there’s not as much of it. Quality before Quantity, right?
Seasonal Anime is an interesting beast to tackle. With so many shows releasing each season, I feel like there’s always a huge rush at season start to release first impressions, followed by a slew of episodic posts, videos, reviews, etc. as anibloggers and anitubers, among others, rush to capitalize on the popularity of the latest and (occasionally) greatest in the Anime scene. I’ve tried doing the episodic reviewing thing, and while my blog saw immense growth during that period, I wasn’t happy with my own content, and it was absolutely brutal trying to keep up with all the shows I wanted to see while writing reviews on each episode.
I guess it really depends on the person and the work ethic, on what’s really successful. I’m honestly not sure what i’ll be doing as far as seasonal anime goes this Spring season. If you’ve got any suggestions, i’d love to hear ’em, because i’ve honestly got no idea. I’d love to get involved with the seasonal shows a bit more than I was during Winter, but at the same time, I don’t want to overreach and let my quality drop.
Manga, Light Novels, and Video Games
A lot of my free time recently has gone into reading Light Novels and Manga, and playing a variety of Video Games. I’m pretty bad at games, to be honest, but I enjoy playing them all the same. My blog content has probably shown this off, as i’ve posted more reviews of LN and Manga, as well as various posts about Video Games in general. Usually just random stuff.
I think one of the problems I have is that I tend to chew through content faster than I can actually formulate my thoughts on it, especially books. If I were to write about every Light Novel volume I finish, i’d be posting 3-4 times a week, at times, depending on availability of content. That being said, i’ll be trying to catch up on some of the latest releases, as well as highlight some of the more interesting things i’ve read lately.
Thanks to a suggestion from Raistlin, I’ve gotten my hands on several volumes of Battle Angel Alita (the deluxe hardcover edition), so expect some content covering that in the very near future. It’s one of my favorite Manga series, and I can’t wait to refresh myself on the brilliant story.
One of the biggest expenditures in my monthly budget (outside necessities, bills, etc) is merchandise. This of course includes hard copies of various Light Novels, Manga, Anime DVDs and assorted other paraphernalia. However, my spending is usually not very focused, and the things I get are relatively innocuous.
There’s a lot of stuff i’d like to get, but is only available in Japan and is usually pretty expensive to ship over to the US. And as fun as spending $50 on shipping sounds, I think my money is better saved… for now, at least.
Honestly, i’m not sure why I decided to rant about merch, other than this is my ranty random post and I can. If anyone has any suggestions for some cool merchandise I could pick up, let me know. I’m an interested shopper at heart.
Life in General
Life is an interesting beast, isn’t it? There’s a lot that goes right, a lot that goes wrong, and generally a lot that just kind of… happens, sometimes. And a lot of the time, it can feel like there’s not much we can do, not much control we can exert over our own lives, other than the everyday decision making of like,w hat to eat, where to go, etc. it gets to a point where, like I feel sometimes, you wonder if life is just passing you by. If you’re standing stationary while other people move on with their lives and their agendas.
With several of my closest friends taking the huge step of marriage in the next few months, various colleagues and buddies finishing their majors and stuff, there are times when I feel like time is rushing past, leaving me stranded and alone in the wake. It’s probably not true, honestly, as everyone has different paths to walk in life, different goals, but sometimes, that can be kind of hard to stomach, you know?
Well, I suppose that about wraps things up. Honestly, if you asked me where I was going with this post, what point I was trying to make, I really couldn’t tell you. For those of you who sat down and read this whole thing, i’m very proud of you, you’ve survived the random ranting about relatively minor things.
Mainly, this was just one of those times where I had thoughts I really wanted to set down somewhere. A place to vent a bit, about the frustrations of life, of everything.