The Million Dollar Question

I’ve been asked this question on many occasions but my lack of having the answer bothered me a little more this time.

It was a comfortable night in the hippest part of the city and I was on a mission to find the perfect spot to study. I was looking for an outdoor area with sufficient lighting. I ended up across the street from one of my favorite indoor study spots, Barnes and Nobles.

My new gazebo is dreamy. It’s lit up, it has a table and chairs in place, and a water fountain that produces peace. The table is great for holding my books and the water fountain drowns out any unpleasant sounds produced from the surrounding world. It is comfort, centered in a busy part of town. It is motivating. It’s everything I’ve been looking for.

I was deep into my studies when I heard a welcoming voice. A life-long friend of mine saw on social media where I was and decided to stop by on his walk back home. I was surprised and glad to see him as it had been a while. Little did he know, exactly two weeks prior something happened to me and I was struggling extremely bad. I was having nightmares every night and having a really hard time sleeping while dark outside. I had been feeling extremely lonely, tired, and discontent. This incident that happened brought up a demon that haunted me a lot of my life and was driving me insane. The incident made me feel like that lost scared kid again. I once again found myself staring at the ground and crowds brought terror. About three hours earlier, in tears, I opened up to some folks about what I was feeling. But the misery was still lingering inside of me all night.

When I heard “Hey Seth” I knew the voice, but it had been a while. I was happy to have company. I was evenhappier because the company was someone I look up to. After catching up for a minute, my anxiety was still running pretty rapid but there was also some sense of peace. I wasn’t alone. My sick mind then got stuck on the peanut butter crackers that were caked to my teeth. He walked up mid chew, so I didn’t have time to clean it with my water. We talked about work some, his move back to the area, then came the million-dollar question.

“What do you do for fun?”

I didn’t have an answer. I looked down at my book and said, “not shit.” My silent thoughts were along the lines of “all I do is go to school, work, and try to stay sober.” 

I‘ve been asked this “what do you do for fun” question numerous times in the past and didn’t have an answer but this time the words hit me different. I felt ashamed, but at the same time the light bulb went off. It gave me something to think about for the rest of the night.

After I answered him with the crap response of “not shit”, he reminded me that I surfed for fun. He said he was thinking about getting back into it. Him having to remind me that I surf for fun was kind of embarrassing. It also made a couple other things a little clearer to me. One being that I need to start making more time to have fun and two that I need to be more grateful.

It’s easy to get caught up in school, work, service, and other things that aren’t always particularly fun. If I would just add things that I truly enjoy into the routine of these other daily task, getting through the day wouldn’t be such a trudge.

After sitting and thinking, I now have an answer to the million-dollar question and I will never answer it the same…

I go surfing. I read a good book. I go to sporting events. I learn how to play new instruments. I sing like a fool. I go to live shows/concerts. I write. I run. I play sports. I go fishing. I walk my dogs. I eat. Etc.…

There’s a lot of things I find fun but when I’m in a funk, I forget to have fun. When I’m in a funk, it’s probably because I lost my gratitude. I typically lose my gratitude when I decide to take something troublesome on alone. 

 

Note’s to self:

  • Keep adding to the gratitude list.
  • Just because others are sick doesn’t mean you have to carry whatever damage they have caused you.
  • It didn’t happen to you, it just happened. OR If it wasn’t you, it would’ve been someone else.
  • Don’t try to “handle it.”
  • You don’t have to do life alone. 
  • Have fun!

 

Would do you do for fun?

Farewell from your Carolina’s Region Vice President (SC)

A year ago, I had no idea what I was getting myself into. I was trembling in my boots (dress shoes) and on the verge of passing out. When I first started my speech on Beauty and Vulgarity, just my hands were shaking. About 45 seconds in, my back began to rattle. I thought I was a dunner. Not only was there a couple hundred of the brightest students and advisors from along the Carolinas in attendance, but the President and CEO of Phi Theta Kappa, Dr. Lynn Tincher-Ladner was present and sitting front row. I was afraid my sweat was going to bounce off the floor and splash her she was so close. I was beyond nervous. Running for regional office for the most prestigious honor society was terrifying and I commend all that are campaigning this year. Win or lose, you all have accomplished something big. You have stepped out of your comfort zone and you’ve gained a much larger support group than what I knew was even possible. Welcome, this is your PTK family.

Working through the fears spoke on above turned out to be a great learning experience and turning point in my life. As I have told my chapter members many times before, I used to have mini panic attacks just having to introduce myself but Phi Theta Kappa and becoming a Regional Officer sparked a new confidence in me. I learned to laugh at myself and I learned that life really isn’t that serious. Life’s meant to be enjoyed.

The fellowship of this program has brought me so much joy and love. I’ve made a lot of extremely uplifting friends from the Carolina’s Region and beyond. I always look forward to seeing everyone at events and in the mean time I enjoy keeping up with everyone through social media.

It’s clear that I love Phi Theta Kappa, the Carolina’s Region, and the Regional Officer team I had the pleasure of serving with, but my chapter has been the biggest blessing of all. Everyone has kind of taken their own role in the group. I’m the old, over protective, grumpy man of the group. I can give them crap but no one else can. I’ve seriously never wanted other people to succeed so badly in my life and I wish I could protect them from all the bad experiences and failures in life that they will have to face. I deeply love my Alpha Nu Sigma family and I hope they would call on me if they ever needed anything. Now and forever.

It’s been great learning to be better leaders with the rest of you. Throughout life and even more so this past year, I’ve learned that great leaders know how to work with others as a team. One of the most meaningful acronyms a good friend and mentor has helped install in my head is, “T E A M – Together Everyone Achieves More.” This is true for life in general and I’m glad you all have played such a huge role on my team. I love you all and thanks for a great year.

I am Seth June and I am PTK!

We are PTK!