If others determine your worth, you’ve already lost it.

Psychology isn’t really my thing. So I went ahead and assumed that sociology wasn’t going to it, either.

However, it is semi-intriguing.

I think that you will agree with me when I say that blogs were inspired by the need to be unique and have our own thoughts that are simultaneously held by the blogger alone and yet still relatable to the readers. In the blogosphere, there is definitely a realm of individualism that is praised. After all, the most unique blogs are the ones that get the most hits, ya? And yes, even the word “blogosphere” seems to imply a sort of community, but that isn’t exactly what most people are searching for when they begin a blog right?

Maybe it is. That wasn’t what I was looking for though. But the interesting part is this: maybe I wasn’t looking for it because I was American.

I was reading an article for my sociology class and I was struck upon this idea because “this rabid individualism is noteworthy because Americans, perhaps more than any other people, devalue loyalty to groups in favor of what they at least perceive as being individuals” (Simmel). Sounds crazy, right?

But it did make sense the more I thought about it.

The article went on:

“For example, when we walk down the street, or when we interact with strangers in any setting, what do we first see in people—individual personalities, or the groups that they seem to belong to (e.g., race, gender, or age)? Do we view their clothing as individual tastes, or as expressions of group memberships (businesspeople, students, working class, etc.)? What do our loved ones first ask about a guest whom we are going to invite home for dinner-the person’s personality traits, or their social affiliations?” (Brown).

And it’s true! I didn’t realize how blatant it was until someone pointed it out! I’m not sure what to do with this information now that I have it but I’m sure there will be another post once I collect my thoughts…you learn something new everyday. It’s a good thing I’m paying to get this sort of knowledge.

“Individuality, Society and Identity: Cornerstones of Sociological Reasoning” in Social Blueprints by David Brown (NY: Oxford University Press: 2004).

Don’t gobblefunk with words.

Thanks to Elizabeth of Delightfully Tacky I have a delightful idea for this new year.

Of course, it’s already 10 days in but I like it.

If I were to pick one word for 2015, it would be: ASPIRE.

I have many aspirations for this year.

I’m already in the swampy middle of applications for REU programs at several Big 10 schools. In addition to that, I want to be able to take Calculus I online so I can continue to take my advanced chemistry and biology classes next semester — somehow it go lost in the shuffle of classes and I never took it. By the end of this year, I want to be able to start preparing for the GRE and the PCAT. Stepping away from the academic arena, I would like to be able to show constant improvement on my PT exercises that I do on my own time. And the cherry on top? I’m in a relationship. There should always be aspirations for that sorta of thing, ya?

I briefly considered “growth” as my word for this year, but I was deterred by the thought that there should always be growth in a year. When picking a word, you are essentially highlighting where you would like to see the growth happen. So for me, I aspire to grow and fulfill my goals for this year.

Like Flynn Rider, I have a dream that I don’t prefer to sing out loud. However, dreams can be reached with goals and goals can be achieved through plans. I have plans and aspirations.

Therefore, look out 2015. I don’t gobblefunk around.

Distraction from distraction by distraction

Here’s the thing about change: I accept the change begrudgingly without fully comprehending how many consequences there will be and then, when the consequences come, I don’t always recognize that the consequences are my fault because I welcomed the change in the first place.

Follow that?

What I really mean by this is this: I got a Twitter.

I’m not sure how I feel about it. Obviously I’m not one for posting thoughts in 140 characters or less. However, I can post links to this little blog on Twitter and it expands my audience — which is the goal in the first place. **

It may be stupid but I’m started to mull over what I truly want in life. I blame Twitter and the new movie “Into the Woods”. Let me explain.

I’ll begin with into the woods. “Into the Woods” follows several fairy tale characters — none of which get the happy ending they expected (no real spoilers here). Cinderella is one of these characters. And she almost made me pull my hair out. As everyone knows, Cinderella runs away from the prince at midnight. Well, in “Into the Woods,” she runs away from him three times! On the third time, the prince spreads pitch on the stairs so she can’t run away. Cue Cinderella’s song about not knowing what she wants. In order to not have to make a decision, she leaves her shoe on the stairs so the prince can make the decision to find her or not with the clue that she has left. How can she not know what she wants??

And now to connect this to Twitter. I was always adamantly against Twitter for a long time because very few people can say anything of any value in 140 characters or less and those who can, would hardly be on Twitter. But now I have to think about what I want. The new blog format gives me access to social media links and I pondered whether or not I would actually use them. As you might be able to see on the left hand side, I have chosen to do so.

And now the real question: would I, Sydney Sheltz, consciously make a decision to reach a goal via means that I don’t approve of?

I thought the answer was “no,” but I can see now that I was wrong. And you may be thinking, “What’s the big deal? It’s just one Twitter icon on a blog and you said yourself that you’re only using it to post the links!”

And you’re right, reader, in this case, it’s not a big deal. But I want a lot more in my life than just growing the audience on this blog and it might be difficult to reach those lofty goals. With the moral code slipping farther and farther away in society, I want to be able to be confident in myself that I will follow the rules I hold for myself. Like Cinderella, maybe I’ll teeter both ways before not making a decision at all. I’m hoping that when life seductively cradles what I want before me and whispers the directions to the easy way out, I know what my answer will be.

I was hoping the answer will be “no.” I suppose I’ll never be sure.

** Also, thank you to all my lovely followers for helping me reach 100! I didn’t actually think I’d get that many and it pleases me that so many of you actually read what I write. So, thanks 🙂

Change is inevitable. Progress is optional.

Well. It’s done.

Welcome to the new and hopefully improved little blog of mine.

If you don’t like it, don’t tell me.

If you do, feel free to comment.

If you have constructive criticism about readability or navigation, I’d be happy to read your comments below so that I can do my best to fix it.

To be honest, I’m not even sure if I like it yet. It’s different — as change should be. And I suppose I could always re-edit it or go back to the original.

I suppose we will wait and see.