optic (iv) | melting mazes

Would you believe it, the snow has returned to Ireland! This happens so rarely that I had to document it.

This period of time also marks the beginning of the end of my college career; perhaps the title ‘melting mazes’ has a double meaning. I hope that this is the end of so much confusion, doubt and entrapment. I didn’t enjoy my chosen degree at all.

I know that leaving college will probably bring even more uncertainty my way, but let’s cross that bridge when we come to it…

And, of course, happy belated St. Patrick’s Day! Or as we say in the Irish language, ‘Lá ‘le Pádraig sona daoibh’ (law leh paw-drig sun-ah deev).

Love and luck,

Clodagh X

optic (iii) | unexpected heaven

Snow and the month of March do not go hand in hand (in Ireland, anyway), but over the past week the whole country has been blanketed in white. Personally I adore snow, hence the title above. Who knows when we’ll see it again?

 

For more regular photo updates, follow my photography Instagram, @clodafoto (www.instagram.com/clodafoto)

security lulls and shouts all at once

The future used to be my happy place. A place where I would be free to dream, achieve, and prosper. A place I would propel myself at the grand old age of 15, having come home from countless awful days at school, wishing it was all different. Fast forward seven years and things are not how I imagined they would be. For want of a more elegant phrase, life comes at ya fast.

What I am experiencing now is the future of 15-year-old Clodagh. In some respects, it’s exactly how I wanted it to be, and many of the worries I faced at that age are a thing of the past. I have, however, gone through excruciating psychological pain that I didn’t account for in the slightest. Pain that seeps into all elements of my life, tainting everything I love and live for. It’s been fun!

The changes I have endured mean that the future is a very, very different place now. I don’t dream of liberation so much as I crave security and long for contentedness. What’s more, seven years from now I’ll be 29, which is terrifying. To be frank, if I don’t have my life in order by then, I know that I’m going to feel like a complete failure. Mainly in terms of my career.

There is a simple remedy to this problem; settle right on down into a cosy, secure career and make peace with my life as it is. It almost sounds seductive. Certainty, approval, and financial security. What more could you want?!

This is where the lulling comes into play. I feel as though security is a kind of sleep you can fall into, blissfully swaddled in the rhythm of life – not dissimilar to the philosophy of Gurdjieff, who believed we all live in a kind of waking hypnosis.

I really, really, really do not want to succumb to security. This, however, is where the shouting takes centre stage. In order to live, we do need security of some kind. Financial security, a roof over our heads, etc. For this to happen, it goes without saying that stability in your profession is a huge help, if not essential. The worry that I could one day be struggling to keep a roof over my head yells at me every single time I think about the future. It ain’t fun.

There’s no real conclusion to this post, other than the fact that I know how hard I’ll have to fight both my instincts and the naysayers to prevent myself from falling asleep. I’d rather be painfully aware than blissfully unaware of what life could be like.

Love and luck,

Clodagh X

optic (i) – ages

As you may remember, I said I was going to start posting ‘photosets’ more often. Well, here we are! I’ve decided to call the series ‘optic’. The following pictures were taken at Blessington Lakes, just outside Dublin (Ireland).

‘ages’ ; nature, lifetime, the nature of life. 

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For more regular photo updates, follow my photography Instagram, @clodafoto (www.instagram.com/clodafoto)

 

(e)motion

Something I’ve only come to realise in the last year or so is the importance of feeling. No matter how crushing, you have to feel something to move on. To keep in motion. If you deny an emotion its breathing space, it will stop you in your tracks, entangling you in a numbing rut. Life stops.

Recently my personal life has taken an unpleasant turn, and to say that I am upset is an understatement. I have no idea what the future holds, nor do I particularly want to know at this point. The sheer anguish of uncertainty is awful, and I really hope things turn in my favour soon. But for now, I am sad.

On paper, this sounds grim. And it is. However, there is an unexpected positive amidst the grief. I am feeling again.

For a long, long time, I had convinced myself that emotion and resilience did not go hand in hand. In my mind they were poles apart; if the two came together it could only mean the destruction of resilience. The flow of tears washed away any and all effort to live through challenging times.

It is this idea of ‘living’ that has become clear to me. In order to live, we must experience. We must feel. If resilience allows you to ‘live’ through adversity, resilience must involve emotion. In truth, we feel our way through life; in order to be happy, we need to know what sad is. When we numb emotion, an experience gets lost in time. Our course of life is stalled and we don’t move as we should – or as we could. We cannot move on from sadness because we didn’t acknowledge the sadness to begin with.

Of course, the opposite is also true. If we stop ourselves from feeling happy, we cannot progress to sadness. Although derailing the course of emotion is tempting, it is an unhealthy coping mechanism acting under the guise of ‘resilience’. Unfortunately, this is a trap that I have fallen into.

Under no circumstances am I ‘grateful’ for this sadness that has taken hold of my life, but being able to comprehend the course of my life is something I am absolutely grateful for. I feel as though I am moving again. The true nature of resilience is clear to me now, and with a little bit of luck, this will only serve to benefit me in the future.

Love and luck,

Clodagh X

christmas + new(-ish) platform

I hope you all had wonderful Christmases. If not, I hope the New Year is far more prosperous.

I adored every second of Christmas, it was one of my favourites from recent years! My ‘big’ present or so to speak was a new camera. I’ve wanted a decent camera for about three years now, but this was the year that I decided to take the plunge. So far I am loving it, so much so that I’ve set up a new Instagram account for it – @clodafoto (shameless plug number 47828364…)

This is a sample of the kind of photos I’ve taken so far:

 

I intend on posting photos to The Electric Oracle too, something I haven’t really been doing up to now.

Until the New Year,

Love and luck,

Clodagh X

one thousand of you | festivities

Screen Shot 2017-12-23 at 19.38.55I promise this is the last milestone I’ll write about on here, but I do feel like this is a (relatively) big one. This week, The Electric Oracle hit 1,000 followers! To say I’m surprised would be an overstatement, but to say that I’m grateful would be an understatement.

Thank you so, so much for sticking with me, in spite of how erratic my posts have become. If I’m being honest I did not expect final year to hit me as hard as it has, so posting every week has proved a challenge. The idea of posting for the sake of it seems deplorable to me, hence the irregularity.

In the New Year I hope to broaden The Electric Oracle with new kinds of posts. I also look forward to engaging with even more of you, potentially via different platforms.

As I write this it is  – bafflingly –  two days ’til Christmas; 2017 has whizzed past, but I am so glad that I found the time to put my toe in the water with The Electric Oracle. If you celebrate Christmas, I hope you have a glorious day. If you celebrate Christmas and you’re struggling, I’m so sorry. I understand how Christmas magnifies any surrounding negativity and strife. Remember that this will pass, now is not forever. Lastly, if you don’t celebrate Christmas at all, I hope you enjoy the holiday period nonetheless!

Thank you endlessly for your support, it means more than you could ever know.

Love and luck,

Clodagh X

missing in action…

As you may or may not have noticed, I haven’t posted on The Electric Oracle for two weeks. Two weeks! I think that’s my longest break thus far. I’m very very sorry, but I’ve been incredibly busy with college / uni, mainly to do with my dissertation. I’ve also been doing other bits and pieces on the side; I’ve been helping out on an Irish language and culture-based podcast called ‘Motherfoclóir’, and I’ve been preparing for Christmas.

Realistically, I won’t be posting as much on The Electric Oracle between now and Christmas, much and all as I would love to. But I deplore the idea of churning out posts for the sake of a posting schedule; if something isn’t up to par, I won’t put it out.

In the meantime, you can watch my latest video for The Electric Oracle here, you can find Motherfoclóir wherever podcasts can be found (iTunes, that little podcast button on your iPhone, and this link right here), and you can pray that I make progress with this dissertation!

Thank you for bearing with me.

Love and luck,

Clodagh x

myers-briggs debunked? | validity of the MBTI and being an INFJ

My latest video is all about the Myers-Briggs Type Indicator and the controversy it has attracted over the years. Enjoy!