Everything I’m Doing New, You Got Old News

A few weeks ago, my husband released a song that happened to be one of my favorites. Perhaps, it’s because he wrote it from a place of transparency and reflection. Reflecting on events, perspectives, and emotions that I was present for and being able to see him effectively process it all through his art inspired me to do the same. The song, titled “Old News” by Nivlac Lemaj, is a song that embraces the idea of continuing to attain a higher self and learning to let go of other people’s projections, beliefs, and expectations of you. Oftentimes in life, people are married to versions of the “old you” and have a hard time accepting any of the ways you may have evolved, as it may threaten the dynamics of the relationship you had with them. As natural as these fears may be, it doesn’t absolve any kind of behavior that may cause harm to someone just because you feel threatened. These behaviors and mindsets also exhibit intentions of an unhealthy need to be in control. In a healthy relationship, to love someone is to show up authentically and be accepting of their progression regardless of the ways it may alter your relationship. Now of course, as human beings we have emotions that we are rightfully allowed to sit with and when relationships change or end we are entitled to grieve them. The issues arise when we are unable to process these feelings healthily and end up causing harm to our loved ones as a result of that. 

“Old News” tackles occurrences in friendships and familial relationships where loved ones are married to the past and project their frustrations, insecurities, and fears onto others unjustly. In this song, Nivlac Lemaj uses clever metaphors to reflect on habits that he’s given up to accomplish his goals. He also uses this record as a way to address anyone who may fault or envy him for doing so. One of the most difficult emotions to manage is jealousy and it’s an emotion that none of us are immune to. Jealousy and envy normally stem from feelings of inadequacy and in a world where many of us are actively engaged in social media platforms, highlighting the “good days”, and sharing each accomplishment, it becomes harder not to compare your progress to others. This doesn’t make you any less of a person. It simply means that you are human. Feelings of envy and jealousy, however, begin to pose a threat once you begin to act on them with ill intentions. In “Old News”, Nivlac speaks from the perspective of someone on the receiving end of these actions. He releases and addresses his frustration to those who have intentionally harmed him as a result of their envy. The beauty of the track lies in his ability to process his pain, honestly identify the betrayals, and actively make the decision to prevail in spite of anyone praying for his downfall. 

What many of us fail to realize, whether we are victims of someone else’s envy or combating feelings of envy within ourselves, is that ultimately, it all boils down to one’s beliefs about themselves. Constant thoughts of self-doubt, inadequacy, or emptiness normally contribute to people’s state of envy. These thoughts drive us to a place where we feel a need to compare our journeys to those of others, often resulting in us feeling “left behind” or stunted. A persistent build up of these thoughts may lead to feelings of misery that often result in a negative transference of emotions that can be unfairly placed on other individuals. While this isn’t an abnormal occurrence, it is still behavior that can be addressed and worked on. 

When we take the initiative to identify harmful thoughts or behaviors within ourselves, we may have the ability to take steps towards positive and ethical change. Identifying the behaviors is the first step and a commendable one. When we identify feelings of envy we owe it to ourselves to discover where they are stemming from and if we are able to pinpoint this, we then have the option to work on those areas of ourselves that breed insecurity. Now of course, this work is easier said than done but we also deserve the gentle reminder that the possibility is always there. Perhaps, one of the most beautiful things about life is that we have the power to change the trajectory of our lives. We have more control over our narrative than we actually give ourselves credit for and once we are able to realize this it can lead us to a life that is far more fulfilling than what we were accustomed to. Change, while often terrifying, is necessary in our lives and we have to learn to support change in our lives and in the lives of those around us.

For those in positions similar to those described in  “Old News”, remind yourself that you aren’t responsible for anyone else’s progress or level of comfort and belief in themselves. You are to live your life as authentically as possible. You are allowed to seek out possibilities and opportunities that are in alignment with who you and where you intend to be in your lifetime. You are not required to dim your light to make anyone else feel comfortable. It is their sole responsibility to provide that level of comfort and security to themselves, just as much as it is your responsibility to do that for yourself. To everyone who holds your progression against you or deliberately tries to hold you back, let them know “everything I’m doing new, you got old news’. Extend hope and grace that in due time they will understand and follow suit.

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