Some Of Teenage Brian’s Odd and Embarrassing Facebook Posts

The only way to describe 2011 and 2012 Brian (15 and 16 years old) is that he was an absolute weapon. I set up Facebook in September 2011, and instantly began to whack up useless updates of my daily life as an N-Dubz worshiping, straight-acting Adidas tracksuit enthusiast. So, I’ve dug deep into that odd character’s social media experience and present to you some of the oddest and most embarrassing Facebook posts from yours truly. Prepare for an uncomfortable read.

 

“Hope ndubz get bac together ! !”Posted 29th January 2012. I was a hard-core fan. Their split literally crushed my soul.

“goin 2 see B.O.B in September! Can’t wait!!”Posted 15th July 2012. That was a lie, that did not happen. No tickets were ever purchased. I’m not even sure that B.O.B was even coming to Dublin. I just thought a Facebook status about going to see a rapper would make me cool.

“Does anyone know what classes we have 2moro?” – Posted 8th January 2012What are timetables?

“Anyone wanna go see Dappy wit me?”Posted 11th March 2012. Ashamed. That is all.

“Only three weeks til summer can’t wait”Posted 2nd May 2012. If people want me to resume reminding them of the time of year, just let me know. I’d be happy to help. It’s October now, in case you guys needed to know.

“Wish I was goin tomangos toni !”posted 16th February 2012. 16 year old Brian really loved a boogie and going to teen discos to meet girls before falling arse over tit out of the closet later that year.

“Taio Cruz never makes a bad song!”Posted 19th December 2011. The further I go back, the more I cringe. Teenage Brian literally makes my skin crawl.

Haha Every1s goin mad over Christopher! Hope he wins wud be gas!”Posted 2nd December 2012. I’m pretty sure this was about Christopher Maloney, the guy who was in X-Factor who really loved his nan but couldn’t really sing and I couldn’t understand why everyone was so triggered over this. 16 year old Brian just wanted to start a fight.

“Lookin forward to getting me albums 2moro”Posted 24th December 2011.I literally just asked for like 20 CDs that Christmas, including everything from Taio Cruz to Flo-Rida to Chipmunk to (obviously) N-Dubz.

“Some creep just rang me askin was I asleep and just hung up… there’s some wierdos out there ha”Posted 31st October 2012. This was obviously some lad who was bored on Halloween night and decided to ring me for the giggles. Fair enough, I made a fair few prank calls when I was younger. But that doesn’t mean I’m not still on the hunt for this guy.

“Really regretting TY now I could have been goin into me last year of school!”Posted 28th August 2012. I wanted to be with the cool older kids.

“Well done Katie Taylor! That was brilliant ”Posted 6th August 2012. I have no idea what I was even on about here, because to this day I’ve never even watched a full sporting event from start to finish.

“Free texts gone”Posted 23rd June 2012. Oh No, I was no longer able to text my mates “Wuu2?” at random times throughout the day.

“Lookin forward to this school hikin trip tomorrow”Posted 25th April 2012. The only place I should have been hiking to was the barber to get my spud head sorted out, and then to the library to take out a dictionary to learn how to spell.

“If I get timeline can I change it back?”Posted 10th April 2012. OMG, do you remember when Facebook changed from having a ‘wall’ to having a ‘timeline’? That was a big transition for me. It was hard, but I got through it. I’m a better person because of it. Thanks for the support through that one. xoxoxox

“Goin to see hunger games tomorrow … Should be good”Posted 22nd March 2012. Little did I know I would become obsessed, read the books over and over again and that Josh Hutcherson as Peeta would open my eyes to how gay I actually was. I had never crushed on a celebrity so much.

“Who sent me a message cos my iPod won’t let me get into it ?”Posted 26th February 2012. I thought I was Kim K with my TOUCH SCREEN iPod, with which I could BROWSE THE INTERNET and GO ON YOUTBE at the tap of a screen. It was revolutionary to me.

“Surprised bebo didn’t go earlier !”Posted 30th January 2012. This was just a tough front, I really was not okay with Bebo being shut down. Before Facebook, I was just as much of an idiot on that as I was on Facebook.

“If anyone gets any strange txts or calls off me they are not me cos my phone was nicked !”Posted 9th January 2012. Okay, there’s a story behind this one. I was actually mugged that night, and my phone was taken. I had just turned 16. It was pretty scary, but at least I didn’t have access to Facebook for a few days so my friends were blessed with a break from these sorts of posts.

“My last status of 2011”Posted 31st December 2011. I actually have no words. Like, why?

“IPOD SCREEN IS CRACKED !!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!”Posted 22nd 2011. Wow, I was an aggro teen.

“Hope Tallafornia is gonna be good tomorrow”Posted 11th December 2011. Oh Jesus Christ, could I have been any more of a wanna-be spicer?

“Dappy is comin to Dublin but it’s over 18s … DEPPRESSING !!!!!!!!”Posted 26th November 2011. If I could turn back time I would 100% give up the grime act and admit my Britney Spears obsession.

“Wanna move skool”Posted 8th November 2011. This was definitely a desperate plea for attention from people in my school.

“Bord ou of me tree”Posted 21st October 2011. So many useless posts, so little time.

“How do u use facebook???????????????”Posted 10th September 2011.

And to finish us off, here’s one that I find particularly funny, because every year it reminds me of the time I dropped out of college to do Communication studies (so basically committed career suicide): “Got my first choice on CAO! In four years I’ll be a primary teacher, can’t wait to start!!”Posted 18th August 2014. I lasted three weeks in that course.

So, there you have it. I hope you enjoyed observing the odd and complex character that was secondary school Brian. May he rest in peace.

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The V By Very Irish Blog Awards

Last night was simply amazing! I was so incredibly lucky to be able to attend the V By Very Blog Awards Ireland as a nominee under the Lifestyle Blog category. To be surrounded by so much writing talent who all shared the same passion for blogging was truly phenomenal, but I was particularly struck by one thing last night.

Before the event and throughout the night I received so many messages from friends and people who read my blog, congratulating me on becoming a finalist in the awards, and wishing me luck. I was so overwhelmed by all of the love and support that I started to get really emotional (although I managed to hold back the tears and didn’t become a blubbering mess). It made me realise how lucky I am to be surrounded by such loving and supportive people who I am able to call my friends and family. It really opened my eyes to how many lovely people I have around me!

I also got a shout out from the DCU Media Production Society, who congratulated me on “making waves on a national level” which was such a lovely gesture, and that one really hit me right in the feels.

I also had the chance to chat to some other bloggers, who wrote about everything from craft to beauty to travel and so much more. It really made me realise how much of a diverse area blogging actually is, and how many different areas there are to blog about. There were people who wrote about technology, finance, parenting, marketing, business, art, film ,literature and history to name just a few!

My fabulous date and I then got free goodie bags filled with snacks, fragrances, lotions, vouchers, fake tan (which my sister claimed for herself without hesitation) and most importantly little tiny adorable cans of Heineken goodness.

Last night was a blessing, and I feel so inspired to continue working on my blog and keep on ‘Being Brian’! Thank you so much to everyone who sent me lovely messages, and of course all of the people who read my blog! I would have never continued to write my blog for as long as I have if it wasn’t for all of the support and love I get from the amazing people who read my blog!

Although I didn’t win the award for best Lifestyle Blog, I’m still filled with an overwhelming amount of joy; that I got to attend such a glamorous event, pose for photographers, meet and chat to so many brilliant bloggers and spend the night with one of my really good friends (which made it super special).

It’s been almost 24 hours since the awards, and I am yet to take off my wristband, and I am yet to stop smiling. A year ago, I never would have imagined that I would be writing a blog, let alone be attending the Irish Blog Awards as a nominee. As cheesy as it sounds, last night was a dream come true.

 

Now vs. A Year Ago: Two Different Brians

How do you measure a year? I mean, I know its 12 months, 365 days, etc. But what I’m asking is how much should you do in one year of your life? How much should change, how many goals should you achieve, and how swiftly should you move along with your life and fulfil all of your goals and expectations?

This time last year, I never would have expected I would be the person that I am today, confident enough to write a blog that I share on social media for everyone and anyone to see. Reminiscing on the person I was at one stage in my life compared to who I am now is one of my favourite things to do, because it reminds me of how far I’ve come, the things I’ve achieved and how I’ve made changes that altered and reshaped my life for the better. I love to do this because the only person I am in competition with is myself, and the only person I try to out-do or beat is my past self. In my eyes, success is simply becoming an improved version of who you already are, whether that’s becoming more successful career-wise, becoming richer, or simply becoming more kind and giving.

About a year ago, I was in a pretty bad way with my mental health. I think my problems had been gradually building up over months or maybe even years, and too many bad thinking habits had gradually worn me out and turned me into an anxious and worried mess. One thing tipped me over the edge, and it is the best thing that ever happened to me. I was put in a position where I felt that I had to leave a job that I had been in for a few years, where I had made so many great friends, and where I felt really comfortable and at ease. It was a super stressful time, and I definitely think it was a major turning point in my life!

I was way too comfortable, and if I had stayed in that comfort zone then I definitely wouldn’t be working in jobs that I really enjoy, I wouldn’t explore my creativity as much as I do, or (most importantly) I wouldn’t be writing this blog and I wouldn’t be nominated for a V By Very Irish Blog Award!!!! Sorry, I had to get that shameless bragging in somewhere!

I normally hate those inspirational quotes you see all over Instagram and Facebook, because you are literally taking life advice from a nameless/faceless image your distant acquaintance shared, but there are a few I like, and one of them is: “The most difficult paths often lead to the most beautiful destinations” or something like that. I think it’s true, although I don’t believe life is as poetic as quotes like this make it out to be.

The point is, sometimes things have to go tits up first before they start to change and get better. Sometimes life throws a massive heap of poo right at your pretty little noggin, and it could be the best gift you’ve ever received, because it forces you to make changes and think differently about life. A year ago, I reached a stage where I started going to counselling and I was forced to focus on nothing but me and my mental health (which I’ve learned should always be a priority no matter what is going on in my life).

A year ago, I never would have dreamed about starting a blog (because it’s quite scary to put yourself out there like that), let alone dream of being nominated for a V By Very Irish Blog Award (more bragging, please forgive me)!

The main things that the past 12 months have given me are a new found self-confidence, a totally new belief in myself and in my abilities and potential that I very much lacked before, and a generally happier day-to-day life. I haven’t done many things I would have liked to do in the past year, though. I didn’t travel as much as I hoped I could, I never went to a music festival (because believe it or not this boy who is nearly 22 years old has never been to one), and I don’t have as much money in the bank as I’d like to.

But there’s all the time in the world for those things, but what there isn’t time for is panic attacks, sleepless nights and worrying from morning ‘til late at night. If I’m not in a generally happy and relaxed state of mind, then none of the other stuff is really worth having.

As messed up as it sounds, I think there’s just as much value in the difficult times as there is in the happiest days of your life. We have all gone through crappy times in our lives, and we’ll all go through more. But hey, what doesn’t kill you makes you stronger, right?

“Inside of a ring or out, ain’t nothing wrong with going down. It’s staying down that’s wrong.” – Muhammad Ali.

Look at me, quoting Muhammad Ali as if I’ve ever watched more than five minutes of any type sporting event. Still though, he has a point!

Entering Final Year And Setting Goals

As I prepare to enter final year of University, I am beginning to realise that full-on adulthood is approaching at an alarming rate (cue panic). I mean, technically I’ve been an adult from the day I turned 18 years old. I mean I haven’t been doing it very well, but technically yes I have been an adult for almost 4 years now (also panics because I’ll soon be 22). But once I graduate from college and have my degree, I’m in the big leagues. Yikes.

I suppose final year should be the time where I get y sh*t together, and start working towards my goals. I have different goals, both big and small depending on who you ask, and perhaps I should start to think about how I would go about achieving these goals.

When it comes to achieving any sort of goal, I have a certain set of rules, not to sound too much like Dua Lipa. But seriously, there’s certain things that have to be in the mix for me when I’m working towards a target, which are totally based in my personality and how my mind works. Obviously everyone is different, so what works for me doesn’t work for everyone else. This is why I think getting stressed about the amount of work other people are doing is pointless, even if they’re working towards the same goal.

The only way I can ever achieve anything, whether it’s minor or rather large, is to be the best, most positive, kindest and most importantly, happiest version of myself every day. My main goal for final year of University is to finish every day and being able to tell myself that I did my best, I smiled plenty, and that I wasn’t an a**hole. For me, a healthy and happy mind set is the best way to move forward and get anywhere.

I learned something really important in my second year of college. I learned how to say no. Believe it or not, this is harder than you think when you have your heart set on something. I would take on so much that I would become stressed out and exhausted, and be absolutely useless at everything I was doing because my brain would be so mashed. I was forced to realise my limits, which are totally individual to me, and I became way more productive when I realised how much I was and wasn’t able to do.

The main promise I am making to myself for final year is to trust my gut. If I feel like a situation or role is going to make me uncomfortable and cause me unnecessary stress and anxiety, then I will simply say no, no matter how ‘useful’ it may be, because the state of my mind is a top priority for me.

I think our mental health and a positive day-to-day life should be a priority to us all, because without it, how much is all the success and achieving going to be worth anyways?  How much are you going to enjoy all of the progress and goal-reaching if your brain is absolutely fried?

Be the best possible version of YOURSELF and not anyone else, and the rest will follow.

Spending My Summer At Home Instead Of Travelling

To some people, staying in rainy Dublin, going to the same clubs and same places as they do every other month of the year might sound like their idea of hell, and they would rather venture to some far away part of the world and create memories in a totally new place. That’s totally fine and legit, and if that’s what you want, then who is anyone to say that you should be doing something else? If you would rather stay home and postpone the adventure to a later date, then that’s equally as valid. My point is, there is no one specific set of instructions as to how and when you should do these things.

At the beginning of this summer, when it seemed like most 21 year old University students were flying away to live the summer of their dreams, I was getting pretty frustrated and down about the fact that I was staying at home doing the same crap and looking at the same sights that I do every other day of the year.

One day I was texting one of my best friends about money worries (I’m pretty broke at the moment) and feeling like I’m missing my chances to experience the world, and she said something so simple but something I really needed to hear. Firstly she reminded me that I can barely afford Dublin, but then she reminded me that “the world will still be there tomorrow”. It’s so obvious, right?

One of the things I hate seeing most on Facebook or Instagram is quotes like “travel while you still can” or “drop everything and explore the world”. I used to let faceless (like you literally have no idea who is writing that stuff most of the time) instructions influence how I thought about my life and whether or not I was making the most out of my younger years. If this is the way you want to do things, then don’t let anyone stop you, but also don’t let anyone tell you that this is what you should be doing for yourself. The only person that knows how to live your life is you.

There’s no point in worrying about how well you’re spending your youth, and whether or not you’re doing things right.

For me, travelling and living abroad when I’m finished college sounds more appealing than doing it now, while some people don’t want to wait. Either option or anything in between is perfectly fine as long as it’s the way you genuinely want to do things.

So instead of spending the summer sulking over the fact that I wasn’t having the same adventures as other people my age, I looked for work experience in my area of interest, stepped out of my comfort zone and quit my part time service job to work in something I actually enjoy, and thankfully the risk seems to be paying off.

It is completely useless trying to live your life based on how other people live theirs, and it will get you nowhere. You’re way of living is legitimate and don’t let anyone make you feel like you’re doing it wrong.

Plus, who ever got anywhere by doing things like everyone else? 😉

2017: The Year I Turned My Mental Health Around

People! I have just realised that we are more than half way through what seems to be the quickest year ever, so I started getting a little nostalgic about the past six months. Seriously though, it seems like only yesterday I was trying to figure out Melania Trump’s facial expressions while her husband was being sworn into office. She was either really confused as to what was happening or she was holding back an epic sneeze for several hours while the ceremony dragged on for far too long.

Anyways, I feel like reflecting over the year so far. The main thing that 2017 has taught me is the importance of looking after your mind. This is something I was always rubbish at up until this year, and I still sometimes struggle with it. But I cannot stress enough how much my moods, energy levels and even my life have changed since I’ve started to put in significant effort to looking after what goes on in this whacky head of mine.

Towards the end of last year, my brain was absolutely fried like a big ol’ rasher. It felt like my head was so cluttered that I couldn’t see straight. I worried about every single little thing so much that I was exhausted and unable to see any situation clearly whatsoever. I ended up quitting my job and taking a bit of time off for the sake of my mental health. As much as that sounds like an excuse to be lazy and not work for a while, if I hadn’t done this, I would probably still be in a right state.

I started going to counselling, and it felt like I was beginning to pick myself up from rock bottom. Most people would have probably looked at my situation and wondered what I was so stressed about, and they would have been right to do so. The problem wasn’t my situation per se, but my attitude towards my situation.

But my new year’s resolution (and the only one I have ever stuck to) was to take better care of myself so I never end up in that mess again.

Counselling was the big turning point for me. Counselling helped me see that I was allowed to feel the way I was feeling, and I didn’t have to feel guilty about it. I am lucky enough not to have to live with any diagnosed mental health disorders or conditions, and this is probably why I waited so long to admit that I needed help. I had high levels of anxiety and my stress levels were through the roof. I was exhausted. For me, counselling was like piling up all of the irrelevant and unimportant stuff I was so focused on and tossing it all out the window. In other words, it helped me to shift my focus, because believe it or not, ‘looking on the bright side of things’ can be difficult to achieve when you have put yourself in such a negative mind set for such a long time. Sometimes we need a little help and guidance out of a rut, and there is no shame in that.

The main lesson I’m taking from the first half of this year is that keeping a healthy mind and attitude towards life takes effort, which pays off 100 times over. Over the past several months I have gotten to know myself better, which sounds silly, because how can you not already know yourself, right? But knowing what I genuinely enjoy doing, what annoys me, what makes me uncomfortable and what makes me smile helps me to alter my life in a way that I reduce my stress levels and maximise smile-time.

Life is too short to be stuck in a rut. If you feel like you might need help, it’s something you should probably consider. Sometimes we’ve got to be a little bit selfish and shift our focus onto ourselves, because if you can’t help yourself, how are you gonna help anyone else? You owe it to yourself to be happy. You deserve it.

Here’s to a positive, happy and most importantly, a LIT second half of 2017.

All We Can Do is Our Best

The other night, I was having a chat with my Mam (while watching a BeeGees tribute concert which was LIT). I was talking about applying for jobs, trying to get work experience, and trying to plan my travels abroad before I get too old to do it. Then she said something so simple, and I realized I need to remind myself of it every day. She told me “all you can do is your best”. It seems simplistic, but if you’re like me, you probably always forget this fact of life.

It’s that classic line that everyone says to you before you start your first Junior Cert exam, but I think it’s something that we all need to remember well into our twenties and even further on in life.

I am my own worst enemy in terms of overthinking. I think this is a bad habit we all have, but I am so hard on myself. I suppose in one way this is a good trait to have. I’m always striving for more, and I am such a hard worker. Any task I am giving, whether it’s an assignment in college or a shift in my part-time job, I will not be satisfied unless I know that I did 100% the best I could have possibly done. This is something I really like about myself, but sometimes it can be my worst trait.

I am very tough on myself, and I expect a lot from myself because I feel like I owe it to myself. We all owe it to ourselves to be the greatest possible version of ourselves. My biggest fear in life is not making the most out of my abilities and my talents, and not making the most out of life in general and reaching my full potential. But I have to realize that I am not superman. None of us are. Sometimes we screw up. Sometimes we miss out on opportunities that we should have taken. Sometimes we take an opportunity and it turns out to be the wrong move. We are faced with so many decisions in life, big and small, and we can’t always make the right moves. We can try our best, but unless we have a crystal ball to look into the future, all we can do is our best to “make it” somewhere in life.

It can be difficult, but I think sometimes we have to accept the fact that there is a lot we can’t control, and trying to control them turns out to be simply exhausting.

So I think no matter how old we get, it’s still important to remember that our best is good enough. You can’t do any better than that. And as my Dad always tells me, “what’s for you won’t pass you”. Sometimes you just gotta sit back and let life take the wheel and do its thing.