Full Potential.

A common myth is that humans use only 10% of their brain. Instead, we actually use close to every part of the brain and it’s active all the time.

So, what happens when a skull is sliced open and a mass in the centre of it taken out? Does that alter the potential of the person since they use close to every part of their brain? What changes when the various parts of the brain are moved even slight portion of a millimeter. Something has to happen, right? – every cause has an effect.

How can I tell what is temporary effect and what is a permanent effect? How can I tell what will stay with me forever and what will continue to improve? It’s impossible, and as my own TEDx Talk speech tells me, I should stop trying to predict the future. But I really can’t help it. I have to constantly tell myself to let it go and learn to live. However, I am finding it rather hard to learn to live in the moment knowing that I would not recall my own moments just an hour or two later. I was always a person that likes to document things and go through a meticulous process to ensure I have everything. Now however, without some sort of reminder (I try to have at least 4 different ones now in case I miss one of them) I would not even remember to start that meticulous process.

So the question now is “What was my full potential before this happened?” and “How can I get myself back to that?”

I was always told to explore my options to get a glimpse of what my full potential would be. I tried to explore a variety of options through my interests: DECA for my interest in marketing, volunteering in long-term care and now at the rehab youth council for my interest in sciences and psychology, etc. But as I would stress to make these large time commitments fit into my schedule, my parents would be afraid of the stress it would give me. It’s all based around my mentality of  aiming to”be the best and never settle for less”. In the short-term it’s an adequate goal for one assignment or one year, but as a person who’s been living their life like that for a couple years, it’s been pretty draining. Before, I could maintain being the best in a lot of things, or close to the best, but right now, I am not the best in the majority of the things I do.  Unable to use my usual techniques of just spending more time and making it better, I find myself in an odd position of having enough time to perfect things, but not enough brain power or concentration to find the ways to make it that 100% that I aim for. For the first time in my life I have enough time to perfect something, but not enough energy and not enough brain power to do so.

I’ve hit a wall. For the first time ever, I know what’s ahead of the wall, but cannot seem to push past it. This reminds me of a phrase my parents would use: 撞板 (directly translated to: hitting a board). It basically means screwing up so hard it causes a new form of stress or confusion because you are momentarily stuck and stopped.

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It’s now the end of the school-year (for me at least). My exams are finished, and just now am I getting back to this post which I’ve left as a draft for months now. It’s really odd reading my writing from just a couple months ago and think about how I must have felt emotionally to be able to write such strong messages. I am always astonished by myself. “What the heck, how was I so articulate??”. As I lay on my bed looking up at the lines on the ceiling brought in my the sunlight shining through my blinds, I find myself in a state of tranquility but also complete fear. I need to be doing something. I NEED TO BE DOING SOMETHING. I should be cleaning my room. I should be studying for my G1. I should be studying material for next year. I should be finding a job – no – working at a job, but that’s all too late. What if everything is just too late? What if I’ve been trying to hard to get ahead that I’ve actually put myself so far back that there’s no way to get to where I wanted to be?

As I try to quiet my mind and calm my heart, I read the posters on my wall – over and over again. As I try to face my future, I am faced with my past and struggle to find a way to get passed all of this. I continue to try to imagine the various ways my future can play out, and the best way to use the resources I have to make the best ‘me’ possible. And I just can’t seem to figure it out – not even a rough idea. And although I base all of my life’s actions on trying to reach my fullest potential, I don’t think I’ve taken the right steps to do so. I begin to wonder if everyone that has gone through some sort of emotional trauma experiences all these thoughts that I’m having and feel immense anxiety. Does everyone feel this terrible feeling and I’m just the only one putting it into words? I really hope not.

In a world where we are so obsessed with quantitative measurements like a mark out of 100, the number of zeros on a paycheck or the number on a scale, how much attention are we putting on things that we cannot measure with numbers? But I guess those qualitative things don’t matter for bigger things like university acceptances, or if you have enough to feed your family. At the same time, is a lavish lifestyle worth a lifetime of physical and emotional pain? Darn, these things are more difficult to figure out than the grade 12 math equations I am supposed to learn.

It is like I am searching to fill a void inside myself. I have to be doing something because I feel as though I am nothing without it. I guess years of defining myself around my achievements and activities finally caught up to me. Who am I as a person? What is my personal worth? Is my potential just based around my achievements or is there something else I can do to make myself feel important? I’ve been doing a lot to fix this problem and be a better person. I’ve been trying to be a better friend, daughter, student, etc, but it just never seems to suffice. Now, I’m just basing my significance on those around me. No. That doesn’t work either. So,  I guess I need to keep on searching. Keep on building up myself to be someone that I can appreciate and admire. For some, that may never come, but I think we owe it to ourselves to try.

 **Written a long while ago…left sitting as a draft…