Essays & Confessions

21 Important Things I Learned In 2015

By | Wednesday, December 23, 2015


1. You need to be surrounded by people who are okay with you taking a break — from work, from going out, from eating heavily or drinking too much. If you feel like you can’t say “I need to slow down for a bit” to someone, you may want to reconsider that situation.

2. Save at least one show you’ve been meaning to binge-watch for your next flu.

3. Negotiate. Negotiate for your worth, for your time, for the attention that you’re afforded. Don’t settle if an offer doesn’t feel right, and never underestimate the power of just reaching out with a quick and friendly email. There’s a difference between being greedy and being smart, and respectful negotiation is very much on the “smart” side of that equation.

4. If you’re really not enjoying a book, don’t feel like you have to finish it. It’s not quitting, it’s conserving your precious reading time to the books who actually deserve it.

5. Re-reading an old favorite is just as valid as reading a new book.

6. Your body will never be the exact way you want it to be when you are in a bathing suit for the first time that season. But you’ll still look at pictures in winter and think about how happy and warm everything looked, and wish you could’ve enjoyed it more in the moment.

7. Vacations, holidays, special occasions — these are times of year when some weight gain should be considered a badge of honor. It means that you had a great fucking time, and didn’t deny yourself the cake or champagne you really, really wanted.

8. Send gifts to faraway friends and family, and if you can’t afford to send one, send a card. Receiving anything in the mail feels extremely special.

9. Make more than you did last year — more money, more art, more friends, more time for the people you care about. Whatever you need, focus on quantifying it and raising it through conscious effort. You won’t be able to have it all at once, but if you treat one thing like it’s an assignment, you can make more of it than you did last year.

10. Book tickets very far in advance so that you will have time to save up for the trip, and force yourself to go to that place you’ve been meaning to go.

11. Airfare is always a better investment than yet another purse.

12. Whatever you like doing the least, force yourself to do first thing in the morning. Don’t let a entire day go by with you feeling the weight of that activity hanging over your head.

13. Sometimes you need to admit defeat and take a sleep aid.

14. You can always make more money. There is always something that can be done on nights or weekends or whenever you have a spare moment that will add to your bottom line. Never look at your salary or contract as some kind of wall that you cannot climb over — your worth is totally up to you, and you can build your ‘income portfolio’ in any way you want.

15. You can go on a “cleanse” if it really makes you feel better, but it’s important to remember that cleanses are bullshit. You don’t need to spend three straight days drinking blended chard to “cancel out” the holiday season. You can just start eating like a normal, reasonably-healthy person again.

16. Anything you try to accomplish in half the time it’s supposed to take is probably going to be half as good.

17. Follow up with people when they have forgotten something. You can’t be afraid of bothering people to the point that it makes you miss out on things you earned, or were promised.

18. Remember that pretty much everyone is working super-duper fucking hard, and that telling people how busy you are or how much you don’t have time for is just obnoxious. You hate it when someone makes it a point to tell you how little time they have, so don’t do it to anyone else.

19. Your friend group is bound to shift, even year-to-year. If you see someone you used to hang out with all the time and it feels a little weird or stilted, it’s not anyone’s fault. It’s just the way life goes, and it doesn’t need to be the cause of an existential crisis.

20. Don’t wish someone happy birthday by posting on their Facebook wall with 50,000 other strangers. Call them. Write them a text at the very least. If they’re not important enough to even text, consider why you’re keeping them in your internet life at all.

21. Say how much you love people. Especially people who aren’t your significant other, and therefore might not really know it.

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