Here are some useful and intangible things I want you to take with you. I’m aware I am certainly not the first person to say any of this, but I am really writing this list for me. We all need reminders, don’t we?
- Be your own best friend. You have to advocate for yourself. You have to be your biggest fan. You have to be the best friend you have. Don’t say things like “you need to lose a few pounds,” or “you are not good enough” or talk yourself into doing things you don’t want to do. Would you say that to your best friend? In the journey of your life, you will never spend more time with anyone but yourself. So you better be nice to that person. Take care of that person. Love that person. You are so wonderful. Think about it. There are things you love about yourself. Even if there aren’t many, fixate on whatever it is you like about YOU. Soon you’ll find more and more things. Do not be ashamed of loving yourself on any level.
- Eat more fruit and vegetables and drink more water. I obviously love junk food and candy and everything that is awful for you, but you really are what you eat. You feel better when you eat “clean.”
- It is never a bad idea to read a little. I mean this because whatever it is you read — an online article, a novel, some nonfiction book in the bargain section of Barnes & Noble– will either strengthen your vocabulary, slightly alter how you see the world, or teach you something new. Even if it’s just a few pages, reading for a bit is always a good idea. Stop checking your Instagram and Twitter feeds for a few minutes.
- Pop music is okay. Stop referring to that Katy Perry song as your “guilty pleasure.” Why do you feel guilty? You like it! It has its time and place and it will make you in a hell of a better mood than listening to Bon Iver this winter. However…
- Listening to sad music is also okay. Let yourself be sad sometimes. It’s human to do so. So I hope you laugh a lot, but I think you should cry sometimes, too. I stress sometimes.
- Kindness will always go further than you expect it to. You get back what you put into the universe. Many people respond to kindness with more kindness. It will surprise you how many people are actually very nice people. Commit random acts of kindness so often that they are no longer random. Make it a daily thing. You will probably reap more benefits than those you are kind to. Trust me.
- Take care of the people who care about you. Those are the people who are always trying to be in your life and accept all that you are.
- Everything is temporary. Every. Thing. Personally, the majority of the things I stress about are so inconsequential. I suppose what I am trying to say is “don’t sweat the small stuff.” However, I am also saying that you must not forget that this life is just a flash of light that burns much faster than we expect it to, so grasp the present and appreciate it for what it is. Just appreciate more things.
- Try not to think too too much. It will hurt your brain (really) and make you feel sad. If something bothers you, talk to a friend. Go for a walk. Take a nap. Write. Do anything that wont drag you down into a well of self-pity or shame or sorrow.