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Project: B.R.E.A.T.H.E.

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PROJECT: B.R.E.A.T.H.E.


xMrUY2U.jpg


 


Balance


Restore


Energize


Accomplish


Transform


Humor


Engage


 


I'm really flattered and humbled that people were asking for this for March. I had my own doubts about posting because I'm still not sure if I'm going to participate


in the current challenge. There were so many things that happened during the course of the last one that really pushed me to ultimately give up. After much thought


I decided that I would move forward with posting this again.


 


I recently watched a few videos on finding passion, stopping the search for passion, and delving into the art of being yourself.


 


I realize that the first two things may cancel each other out, but they don't. They actually compliment each other, and this is why:


 


Both videos in which I watched talked about what passion is. It is not a thing. It is a feeling. For so long, I have always felt that I was a failure because I cannot sufficiently


answer the question: What is your passion?


 


I don't know what it is! I'm 32 years old, and I still don't know. What I do know is what I like doing; I know what makes me happy and puts a smile on my face.


That is helping others and giving them the hope and support that they are worth it; that they should not give up no matter what. Which is exactly why I am


adding this to the accountabilibuddies for this challenge, and quite possibly for future ones. Building up others to ensure that they reach their goals, and


are able to face whatever challenges they have are what make me feel stronger. It breathes life into my spirit and soul.


 


And I'm hoping that, in doing so, I find the much needed ambition, drive, and push to get myself back onto the path that I have been traveling.


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IN. ^_____________^

 

Your question is very interesting because it's been something I've been rolling over in my head lately too.  I don't know the answer either!

 

Lately I've been really realizing that things I have been passionate about no longer hold the same flare for me.  Mainly being such a huge part of the local soccer community.  In years prior it's been SUCH a defining hobby and part of who I am but I honestly just couldn't be arsed anymore to care, for various reasons. I've been slowly and deliberately removing myself from my leadership roles and I have to say, it feels good, refreshing.  But it's also weird.. a thing that consumed my life - joyfully, I might add - for many years just kind of... shut off.  Why?  I have some theories, but overall, I'm not sure.  I can see this pattern with other hobbies in my past, too.   It's really fascinating and has given me a lot of pause for thought lately.

 

I think it's different for everyone, too.  My hobbies and thusly passions often change, almost evolve, as I grow and age.  It's real cyclical and sometimes it makes me feel kind of bad that my spark burns so bright and then just fades away, like, why can't I be consistent with something for very long periods of time? I'm slowly learning that this is me, and it's ok, and as long as I know this is how I work when it happens again I won't be so staunchly resistant and invite bad feelings, instead I can just flow with it knowing this is how it is, and on to the next thing...

 

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Wow. I just read through the previous challenge's Project B.R.E.A.T.H.E. and I am blown away by the wonderfulness you managed to capture there. I would love to participate in this - I have been so stressed lately with my life really ramping up both in schedule and responsibilities aspects I think this will be a lovely way to help deal with all that, as well as have a nice little haven on the forums where I don't feel like if something goes sideways I'm docking points from myself for missing a part of my challenge.

In terms of passion, it's strange. I don't know if I can answer that question either. I know I am passionate about my job in that I love what I do, I take pride in it, and it truly is what I *want* to be doing. But is it my passion? Definitely not. I think that's a big part of that question as well - figuring out the difference between what you are passionate about and what is your passion. I'm not sure I can even answer that question. I think things you are passionate about are subject to change, but a true passion I see as something that is essentially constant throughout your life. For example, the more I think about it the more I really think my "passion" is helping people. How I help people I may be passionate about in different ways from time to time, but the last few years I have been really trying to reflect on an overarching theme to my life and what I want to be and do - and that seems to be it. It's general, yes, but it's a path that I can follow to different ends but will ultimately still be following my passion. I love volunteering, I am applying to be a big sister in Big Brother Big Sister, but also my friends and I may start an advice and review blog on hiking and outdoors. Both of those I can see as helping people in completely opposite ends of the spectrum different ways, and my interest for each of those things may wax and wane as time goes on, but the overall theme of helping others is still there.

It's weird because obviously we both have wandered to the same conclusion of our passion being helping others, and I've seen people say that a lot around the forums. I wonder if there is a pattern here.

Not sure that made any sense, but it's coincidentally something I've been thinking about a lot lately so you got some word vomit as a well-timed result :D

So anyway, yeah, I'm so in for this group! Thank you so much for setting it up, Kelliestrasza! Also, if you want any help with finding or posting daily inspirations (only offering because you mentioned you were debating posting this at all not because I think any of the awesome posts you did last challenge were lacking in any way!) let me know!

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 I think things you are passionate about are subject to change, but a true passion I see as something that is essentially constant throughout your life.

 

Ooh, this is good and makes me go "Hmm".  I'm definitely a helper too - I see it in all of my careers, in the type of person I am, from day to day and in a crisis.  This is definitely something that will never change.  It's interesting to try and figure out how to cultivate your passion to make your life MORE passionate... if that makes sense...

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https://youtu.be/6MBaFL7sCb8

 

This was one of the videos I watched, and I think it definitely hits the nail on the head in regards to having that constant in passion.

 

I also did an exercise found in the following video:

 

https://youtu.be/4jniOFf1o9Q

 

I answered the five questions, and the discussion and thought on constants makes so much sense.

 

It's interesting because I think it also goes hand in hand with finding yourself. That's a struggle that will probably continue on throughout the rest of my life, but I'm sure that's to be expected with the ever-changing likes and dislikes.

 

One thing that I think people try and do is emulate a person, which I definitely did a few points in my life. That was what made the questions so interesting to answer. You had to pick three people who you wanted to be like, and admired. But in the same breath, you don't want to tell yourself that you want to BE them. There is always that struggle to find the balance between using inspiration, and trying to just be the inspiration.

 

If that makes sense!

 

Raxie, please feel free to post and share any and all things! Whatever makes you feel comfortable, or if you have something you want to focus on. <3

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It's interesting to try and figure out how to cultivate your passion to make your life MORE passionate... if that makes sense...

I really like this idea... Like if you're losing passion for something or want to try something new you can use knowledge of your passion to add things you are passionate about to your life?

SO MUCH PASSION! 

 

https://youtu.be/6MBaFL7sCb8

 

This was one of the videos I watched, and I think it definitely hits the nail on the head in regards to having that constant in passion.

 

I also did an exercise found in the following video:

 

https://youtu.be/4jniOFf1o9Q

 

...

 

One thing that I think people try and do is emulate a person, which I definitely did a few points in my life. That was what made the questions so interesting to answer. You had to pick three people who you wanted to be like, and admired. But in the same breath, you don't want to tell yourself that you want to BE them. There is always that struggle to find the balance between using inspiration, and trying to just be the inspiration.

I will definitely be checking out those videos when I've got a moment. Thank you so much for sharing!

The emulate-a-person aspect I feel is a particularly poignant point here in the forums, there are tons of challenges where people are trying to 'be' a nerdy idol (myself included). It's interesting how that can provide motivation but also I can see how it can be used as a crutch as well.

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One thing that I think people try and do is emulate a person, which I definitely did a few points in my life. That was what made the questions so interesting to answer. You had to pick three people who you wanted to be like, and admired. But in the same breath, you don't want to tell yourself that you want to BE them. There is always that struggle to find the balance between using inspiration, and trying to just be the inspiration.

 

 

The emulate-a-person aspect I feel is a particularly poignant point here in the forums, there are tons of challenges where people are trying to 'be' a nerdy idol (myself included). It's interesting how that can provide motivation but also I can see how it can be used as a crutch as well.

 

 

Hahaha life is funny

 

The past 6 months of my life, due to certain circumstances, have really forced me to step back and take a look at my unadulterated self.  In the majority of my social situations I've slowly learned to chameleon myself into whatever scenario I find myself in - from beer drinking buddies to work colleagues to soccer friends to even me here on the forums, each version of me has been gently different, tailored to the type of people I'm with to make interactions as smooth and unremarkable as possible.  But, whoa.  That's not me!  I've really been digging deep to discover who I am and just being unabashedly me, as weird and different as it may be sometimes.  It's difficult at times but very liberating as well.

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Hi there!  Funny to see this here considering I have a mindfulness quest in my current challenge so I can try to stress less and calm down.  Really happy to see this here :D.

 

As for the passion topic...I think that currently, my passions have been Muay Thai and my creativity (drawing as well as writing and story planning).  Both of those have been wonderful stress relievers for me as well in their own way, though I think my art will always be a slight point of stress since I always equate being passionate about something = being GOOD at it, and my judgment of good in my art is always much higher than how I'd judge anyone else ( we are our own worse critics).  Like Sharawy, I find that passions change as we change; life is not stagnant, it's always moving and we are moving and adapting as we get older and hopefully wiser.  Some of the passions we had as a kid will not always be the same as we are adult.  In fact, though art has always been a long passion of mine since childhood and the motivation for it has stayed the same (I wanted to create worlds and people in them), it has shifted to thinking on what tools I enjoy using, why I prefer those tools, what can I learn to improve, etc.

 

I have to say...when it comes to emulating someone...I'm not sure if I can pick a person I try to emulate.  I can however, pick an idealized version of myself that I had tried to my detriment to strive too.  The ever elusive 'perfect' version of me.  Which is of course, flawed cause perfection is not a trait of a human being.  I would always think that life would be so much easier if I was just perfect; If I was smarter I can solve this problem; if I was talented, perspective would be easy to achieve in my art; if I had better strategic thinking, I would never lose;  If I was fitter, I would be able to block every punch and kick, etc.  It's really something I have to work hard at: I can accept successes; but it is failures where we truly learn and where we improve...and I accept my failures very, very poorly; with much crying, rage, and anger.  What makes it worse is that it makes things I am passionate about or I put a lot of importance in a bit more stressful than they should be.

 

Something I need to work on.  With some breathing and careful thought I might be able to push past this when it rears its' ugly head.  Perhaps.

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This is really cool. Most of the time I do not feel stressed, but sometimes I wonder if I am in denial about being stressed. I definitely think there are things to learn here! So what is my passion? I read that question and really had to stop and think. It is easier to list things I am NOT passionate about and honestly I am amazed at how many things I do that I am not passionate about. My job for instance. I do it well, but I would not say I am passionate about it. Surely I am passionate about fitness? Nah not really. Ohh what about some hobbies? Again, no. So why the hell do I do these things? Because there is something I am passionate about...

 

Self Reliance

 

I am fiercely independent. I want to be prepared for anything in life. Physically, mentally, and emotionally. I do not want to find myself in a position where I have to rely on anyone but myself (probably because I have been let down by people before). I work my job because it is tolerable (almost enjoyable sometimes) to gain financial independence and be 100% debt free ASAP. I work on fitness to build a body that is capable of anything I may encounter may it be enjoying life with hiking, playing, climbing etc, or defend myself and family should the need ever arise. My hobbies include building practical skills such as gardening, carpentry, engine repair, renewable energy production, the list goes on. Am I passionate about any one of these things? No, but together that increase my self reliance, and with that comes an inner peace knowing that not only can I take care of myself, but also set a good example for my young son. Also, a high level of self reliance should naturally reduce stress :)

 

 

Thanks to Kelliestrasza for posting this, because honestly I haven't thought about my "passion" in this way, but it helped to remind me of why I do the things I do...

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GOSH I LOVE YOU GUYS SO MUCH

 

 

This is really cool. Most of the time I do not feel stressed, but sometimes I wonder if I am in denial about being stressed. I definitely think there are things to learn here! So what is my passion? I read that question and really had to stop and think. It is easier to list things I am NOT passionate about and honestly I am amazed at how many things I do that I am not passionate about. My job for instance. I do it well, but I would not say I am passionate about it. Surely I am passionate about fitness? Nah not really. Ohh what about some hobbies? Again, no. So why the hell do I do these things? Because there is something I am passionate about...

 

Self Reliance

 

I am fiercely independent. I want to be prepared for anything in life. Physically, mentally, and emotionally. I do not want to find myself in a position where I have to rely on anyone but myself (probably because I have been let down by people before). I work my job because it is tolerable (almost enjoyable sometimes) to gain financial independence and be 100% debt free ASAP. I work on fitness to build a body that is capable of anything I may encounter may it be enjoying life with hiking, playing, climbing etc, or defend myself and family should the need ever arise. My hobbies include building practical skills such as gardening, carpentry, engine repair, renewable energy production, the list goes on. Am I passionate about any one of these things? No, but together that increase my self reliance, and with that comes an inner peace knowing that not only can I take care of myself, but also set a good example for my young son. Also, a high level of self reliance should naturally reduce stress :)

 

 

Thanks to Kelliestrasza for posting this, because honestly I haven't thought about my "passion" in this way, but it helped to remind me of why I do the things I do...

 

Wow dude this is fascinating!  And I never really came close to thinking about it this way.  The sum of the parts.  Dang.

 

Self-reliance is interesting because I think it may be my #1 personal achilles heel.  I've never had to 100% rely on solely myself at any point in my life and sometimes I wonder what would happen if that happened.  I'm a very mentally strong person right now, but how much of that is me and how much of that can I attribute to the quiet security of my support system?

 

Right now I consider myself extremely rational and mentally/emotionally strong and capable of dealing with literally anything that can be tossed in my way.  I have dealt with some serious shit in the past.  I'm hugely self-sufficient in a crisis situation but when the dust settles and I'm on my own, how long will that last?

 

TUNE IN NEXT TIME nah not really. :)

 

 Some of the passions we had as a kid will not always be the same as we are adult.

 

THIS.  Isn't this WEIRD?!  Every so often I'll reach another point in my life where I realize this so strongly, how different I am from 2 / 5 / 10 years ago, and it's just so wild.  Things I used to worship, eh, could care less anymore.  This is something I'm working through right now and while I'm on the tail end of processing it, it's still wild and kinf of "how the hell does this work" to see something you had strong feelings for now elicit no real feels.

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The past 6 months of my life, due to certain circumstances, have really forced me to step back and take a look at my unadulterated self.  In the majority of my social situations I've slowly learned to chameleon myself into whatever scenario I find myself in - from beer drinking buddies to work colleagues to soccer friends to even me here on the forums, each version of me has been gently different, tailored to the type of people I'm with to make interactions as smooth and unremarkable as possible.  But, whoa.  That's not me!  I've really been digging deep to discover who I am and just being unabashedly me, as weird and different as it may be sometimes.  It's difficult at times but very liberating as well.

 

Wow I had never thought of things this way and reading through this kind of gave me a weird feeling of dread? Totally unexpected emotions but apparently something I need to work on.  I definitely do this and didn't even think about it this way.  I also have always been a huge introvert and require massive amounts of alone time in order to be a proper human - so who am I when I'm alone?  Am I one of those people, all of them, or none of them? That's not to say I'm a COMPLETELY different person around different groups of people, and I'm not sure if I'm truly chameleoning or if I'm just reacting to different people around me, who obviously are different in different groups.  But the most dramatic would probably be the difference between my work friends self and my high school friends self.  And this seriously freaks me out the more I think about it - like who even am I? I am going to definitely have to examine this further.

 

I have to say...when it comes to emulating someone...I'm not sure if I can pick a person I try to emulate.  I can however, pick an idealized version of myself that I had tried to my detriment to strive too.  The ever elusive 'perfect' version of me.  Which is of course, flawed cause perfection is not a trait of a human being.  I would always think that life would be so much easier if I was just perfect; If I was smarter I can solve this problem; if I was talented, perspective would be easy to achieve in my art; if I had better strategic thinking, I would never lose;  If I was fitter, I would be able to block every punch and kick, etc.  It's really something I have to work hard at: I can accept successes; but it is failures where we truly learn and where we improve...and I accept my failures very, very poorly; with much crying, rage, and anger.  What makes it worse is that it makes things I am passionate about or I put a lot of importance in a bit more stressful than they should be.

 

This is interesting because I think I do the same thing.  I draw inspiration from plenty of people, but actually trying to emulate someone isn't really what I'm doing because there are many different aspects from different people that I get that inspiration from that I want to incorporate into myself so I don't really want to be like just one of them.  While I think using your own desires for yourself can be mentally better than trying to emulate other people for self idenfitication reasons, I think it can easily go into a downward spiral as well.  I definitely have similar thoughts - they usually are related to things I want to do and putting them off until I'm closer to that perfect me self? Like, when I first starting working out I wouldn't even join a gym until after I had worked out at home for a few months because I didn't think that version of myself would go to a gym? Not sure if that makes sense, but perfectionism definitely plays a part in it and it causes more stress than it should I think.

 

Self Reliance

 

I am fiercely independent. I want to be prepared for anything in life. Physically, mentally, and emotionally. I do not want to find myself in a position where I have to rely on anyone but myself (probably because I have been let down by people before). I work my job because it is tolerable (almost enjoyable sometimes) to gain financial independence and be 100% debt free ASAP. I work on fitness to build a body that is capable of anything I may encounter may it be enjoying life with hiking, playing, climbing etc, or defend myself and family should the need ever arise. My hobbies include building practical skills such as gardening, carpentry, engine repair, renewable energy production, the list goes on. Am I passionate about any one of these things? No, but together that increase my self reliance, and with that comes an inner peace knowing that not only can I take care of myself, but also set a good example for my young son. Also, a high level of self reliance should naturally reduce stress :)

 

Ughh oh man this is also really interesting to me because I never thought of it this way either.  We can put our passion into something in order to achieve what we are passionate about even if we aren't necessarily doing the thing we are passionate about.  I think this kind of goes back to my overarching passion of helping people - I'm not necessarily passionate about the ways in which I help people but the overall helping people thing is what I'm trying to do.  I feel like it goes back to what BlackTezca was talking about with trying to be your perfect self, which may include a 100% self reliant person, etc.

 

Self-reliance is interesting because I think it may be my #1 personal achilles heel.  I've never had to 100% rely on solely myself at any point in my life and sometimes I wonder what would happen if that happened.  I'm a very mentally strong person right now, but how much of that is me and how much of that can I attribute to the quiet security of my support system?

 

It's weird because I'm coming from a complete opposite end of the spectrum here - I have had to be 100% self reliant basically my entire life and I feel like I almost need to work on backing off from that, and accept help from other people, and not even help but just support.  It's hard when being super independent has been my default mode for as long as I can remember.

 

------------------

 

So how was everyone's week one? To quote the original group:

At the end of each week, I would like to review any negative events that may have impacted us. Rather than focus on the negative, though, I would like to put a positive spin on them. How can we make the bad into good? How can we fall asleep with a smile rather than with a stress-filled brain?

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 So how was everyone's week one?

 

YAHA you rock!  I meant to come here yesterday but got too caught up in reading over FFXIV story quest spoilers oops~

 

My Week 1 went pretty fantastic!  I have no complaints.  Spring has definitely sprung here - it's going to be in the mid 70's today! - and it makes SUCH a big difference in my mood and outlook.  We are still dealing with some personal things here - mainly not being able to move as soon as we'd like due to wanting to be smart financially - but we're dealing with them really well and with a lot of optimism and positivity.

 

Fitness-wise has been great, I'm deloading and cutting and starting to see the physical results I've wanted to see for many many (many) years.  It's real validating that yes, I am doing The Thing the right way!!  I have many moments now where I just look at myself and I'm so pleased.  It's WEIRD!!

 

 

 

Wow I had never thought of things this way and reading through this kind of gave me a weird feeling of dread? Totally unexpected emotions but apparently something I need to work on.  I definitely do this and didn't even think about it this way.  I also have always been a huge introvert and require massive amounts of alone time in order to be a proper human - so who am I when I'm alone?  Am I one of those people, all of them, or none of them? That's not to say I'm a COMPLETELY different person around different groups of people, and I'm not sure if I'm truly chameleoning or if I'm just reacting to different people around me, who obviously are different in different groups.  But the most dramatic would probably be the difference between my work friends self and my high school friends self.  And this seriously freaks me out the more I think about it - like who even am I? I am going to definitely have to examine this further.

 

I chameleoned for years and knew it, and was ok with it.  I'm definitely an introvert too and to me fitting in easily with whoever I was around was the path of least resistance.  And it's true, it was, but there eventually came a point recently where I just got tired of it.  Why should other people dictate how I decide to act?  Like you I wasn't a completely different person around different groups, but I definitely was more... hmm... watered-down?

 

I think work v friends would definitely be more dramatic, depending a lot on your professional environment.  It took me a long time to slowly become "myself" at my job - like peeling back layers of an onion over a couple of years - but I feel now I'm at a point where I have a good balance of authentic me and professionalism.

 

Brains. Oy.

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Week 1 challenge wise went very well.  I have been doing some mindfulness exercises every work day which has really helped me calm down and keep focus when the day has been going long or has been stressful.  Some personal issues have begun that has added some worry; even though it doesn't impact me on a close personal level, it is in my peripheral and I hope that all evens out and  goes well.  I think by practicing deep breaths and taking sometime just for myself to relax, I can lower my stress level a bit.

 

Fitness wise, all was well!  I ate a bit much during my San Diego trip, but I'm back now and kicking ass so far :D

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I just realized I didn't answer my own question.  My week one was pretty good.  Most of it I spent getting back into the swing of challenge things.  I actually focused a lot more on cleaning than fitness - the past few weeks I've been focusing on a lot of things that aren't fitness and while I think it was needed so I could get my life in order, I really need to get back on this bandwagon.  It's weird, I know some people have negative voices saying "you lost momentum it's going to be so hard to start again why bother" but I have almost the exact opposite voice in my head, but it results in the same thing. It sounds like it's not a negative voice but as it results in inaction I guess it is just a disguised negative voice?  Basically what that voice is saying is this: "You had such success last time, and yes you worked hard but it wasn't that hard, so you can get back there any time you want, you just have to start.  But since you can get back to it any time you want... why not do these other things first??" And then I end up putting off getting back on the wagon.  It's such a weird thing to have to react to and figure out where that voice comes from.  But anyway, I decided this week was the week to get back at it sooooo shut up voices. Hahah.
 

I chameleoned for years and knew it, and was ok with it.  I'm definitely an introvert too and to me fitting in easily with whoever I was around was the path of least resistance.  And it's true, it was, but there eventually came a point recently where I just got tired of it.  Why should other people dictate how I decide to act?  Like you I wasn't a completely different person around different groups, but I definitely was more... hmm... watered-down?
 
I think work v friends would definitely be more dramatic, depending a lot on your professional environment.  It took me a long time to slowly become "myself" at my job - like peeling back layers of an onion over a couple of years - but I feel now I'm at a point where I have a good balance of authentic me and professionalism.
 
Brains. Oy.

 
I definitely am myself at work I think, I don't actively feel like there's ever been a time I've told myself "oh I shouldn't say/do that" in a certain crowd.  I just upon reflection realize that I naturally adapt myself slightly and the more I think about it the more I realize I'm not sure what the truest, purest version of myself is.  I need to ponder this more.
 

I think by practicing deep breaths and taking sometime just for myself to relax, I can lower my stress level a bit.

So much this! Headspace has a little 3 minute "SOS" session that I use a lot and it helps a ton when I get into a stress spiral.

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I know that this challenge is coming to an end, and I sincerely hope everyone managed during their four weeks.

 

It was very difficult for me to share encouraging words here because I have not been taking my own advice. There were a few moments where I felt relaxed, and found a happy place. Sadly, it didn't last.

 

The other place I find myself falling into is where I find that place of happiness, and then something happens. When that something happens, I feel as though everything explodes around me. Stress and worry weigh me down, and that usually leads to stress eating, feeling sluggish, and then just wanting to curl up into a circle. I know that this is my personal fight; that I need to do whatever I can to push myself out of that rut. If I don't, then I will just feel worse. Sometimes it's just difficult to tell myself that doing something good will lead to feeling good when....something bad happens to overshadow it.

 

Keeping a firm hold of that happy place and thing?

 

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