twenty seventeen

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I’ve never been much for resolutions, so let’s just call them thoughts…

1.

you can do anything, but not everything. really, you can’t.

2.

if you’re anxious about something, can you do anything about it? if no, then why worry? if yes, then why worry?

3.

do not live for others’ approval… 99% of the time, they aren’t thinking about you anyway

4.

find your own style, free of fluctuating trends, and don’t be afraid to embrace it

5.

on that note, stop making impulse purchases. put your money where your mouth is, pursue ethical fashion, donate or sell excess, little-worn items. remember that shopping might distract you from your problems for a moment, but the dwindling savings and buyers’ remorse aren’t worth it in the end…

6.

because your problems will still be there, no matter how hard you want to hide. stop running, stop avoiding, stop ignoring. stop turning to cocktails and tv marathons and instagram workouts and chocolate bars and awkward, directionless coffee dates with bad boys and future billionaires and absolute buffoons to try and numb the pain.

7.

embrace this stage of life – the singleness, the unknown, the thrills and fears and excitement and tears. everything. the past is the past and you’re guaranteed no future, so make the most of the present.

8.

be honest. having a fantastic day? say so. having a shit day? don’t laugh and pretend otherwise. choose your timing and audience wisely (oversharing is overrated), but be real.

9.

let down your hair. dance at that wedding like no one’s watching, splash in puddles, flirt a little, sing along in the car, kick off those heels – don’t be afraid to laugh and smile and live.

10.

in thinking about the future, don’t allow money to be the ultimate guide, but don’t overemphasize your need for a so-called calling either… find work that allows you to positively impact the lives of others while still utilizing your talents. odds are, somewhere along the way, you’ll realize you enjoy what you do.

11.

it’s good to be prepared, but take a step back when your planning starts to spoil the here and now.

12.

if you never try, you’ll never know. regret’s a bitch, so take risks within reason. you don’t get a repeat round.

13.

don’t allow fear to rule your life. relationships, religion, politics, future plans, etc. – know where you stand, stand for something, but don’t stand for anything simply because you’re scared of someone or some idea or someplace else.

14.

stop the constant comparison. your best friend? not you. your parents? not you. the millennial blogger guru? not you. the sophomore college student with eleven internships? also not you. appreciate their success and personal journeys, #leanin to encourage and support others along the way, but know that your story is wonderfully unique, just like you. just because it seems atypical to some does not make it any less beautiful or perfect for YOU.

15.

be grateful. too often these days, conversations morph into misery contests, especially among students… who got the least sleep, whose professor is least understanding, whose roommate is most inconsiderate, whose schedule will implode first. this produces a morbid sort of camaraderie, but in fact, complaining never helped anyone – if you’re unhappy with a situation, and there’s something you can do, come up with an action plan and stop making excuses. if it’s out of your control, then don’t allow discontentment to steal your joy.

16.

control your expectations. it’s easy to ruin an experience if you’ve built it up in your mind to be perfect, yet it’s just as destructive if you’re constantly wallowing in pessimism and anxiety.

17.

there is strength in acknowledging your weaknesses. you needn’t feel ashamed in striving to address and understand them.

18.

you haven’t failed, just found another way which doesn’t work. stand up, brush yourself off, learn from the experience, and move along. perhaps this door has shut rather roughly in your face, but that just means you’re inching ever nearer to walking through the right door at the right time.

19.

it’s okay to be a dreamer. always be willing to learn from and listen to others, but don’t allow backhanded compliments like “idealism” and “naïvité” and “youth” to pierce your soul like arrows and sour your enthusiasm for life.

20.

ultimately, things won’t make you happy, no matter how nice. nor will people, nor any particular person. nor will distant shores and unexplored streets. happiness comes from within.

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