I’m 38 today, which is cool. I’ve not been one to really cry over getting older. The other option is way worse, so I’ll take it. And to be honest, there’s not much difference between 18-year old me and 38-year old me, aside from a few crows feet, and my neck starting to do weird things, and my back hurting when I wake up sometimes. Aside from those minor indignancies, those 20 years have been pretty dang good. I’ve even learned a few things over the past two decades. Since I’m a kind and giving soul, I shall pass on what I learned to all you whippersnappers. And those who have a few years on you, you never know. You may learn something anyway.
#1: Love Yourself!
Like the great RuPaul once said “If you can’t love yourself, how in the HELL can you love someone else?” It’s pretty profound, because it’s true. People who love themselves (in a healthy, non-Kanye West like way) are happier and more able to keep that love going. People who truly love themselves and have a good relationship with oneself have no need to be hateful, spiteful, or any of those non-fun things. I highly recommend it.
Really, you SHOULD love yourself, because you’re the one stuck with yourself all day, everyday. Makes total sense to me. So, get on that.
#2: Work Hard
You would think that’s a no-brainer, right? But there’s a lot of lazy fools out there who think that things should get handed to them because they breathe.
One of the best things I learned from my parents was a work ethic. You want something? Great. Earn it. You get a job, show up, have a good attitude, learn, and wear deodorant. It’s not complicated.
#3: Learn About Finances
I can’t stress this ENOUGH!!!!! I’m not math major, but money coming in should be more than money going out if at all possible. I’m going to quote my mother on this one, “Always live below your means, and you’ll never be broke”. She gave me that advice at 20. For once I actually listened. I really feel like money and finance classes NEED to be a Core requirement in all high schools. Pretty sure that would have been way more useful than the ecology class I had in 11th grade where all I had to do was take out the trash to pass.
#4: Don’t Bleach Your Hair
It will die. And you will be sad. And it will take seven years to grow back. True story from the time my hair got accidentally bleached at a salon in Manhattan, KS.
Which leads me to #5…
#5: YOU GET WHAT YOU PAY FOR!!!!!!
I learned this one later in life. I was always thrifty and saved money where I could. Which is great, and very helpful…BUT some things are worth paying more for. Hair is definitely one of them as I found out the hard way. Same goes for running shoes, toilet paper, and coffee.
#6: Only Be Around People Who Are Nice to You!!!
Again, a later in life lesson for me. If someone didn’t like me, I used to freak out, wonder what I did wrong, and then TRY to make whatever tasteless human who didn’t like me, and guess what? Doesn’t work. Not everyone will like you. But also, not everyone is smart. So…just be around people who like you. Life has been so much better since I worked that one out.
#7: Also, Love Someone Kind
Young me only liked boys who were NOT nice to me. (My sincerest apologies to all of the lovely young men who I may have hurt during my late teens and early twenties. It really wasn’t you. It was me. I was a moron. Most young women are when it comes to love.) Thankfully I saw the light at the age of 24, and settled down with someone who is a good human, AND loves me for me. God bless him.
I highly recommend not settling down with an asshole. I don’t care how hot he or she is. Just, no. Trust me on this one. Happiness is fun.
#8: You CAN be nice to someone even if you disagree with them. I think that 96% of the population forgot this one in recent years. Really, to dislike someone because they have a differing opinion than you is not only stupid, but childish. And if you must be angry at them for this, then just ignore them instead of being rude on social media all the while misspelling half of the words. Which brings me to my NEXT life lesson…
#9: Grammar is Your Friend, People!
And for the love of GOD, if you’re going to argue on social media, spell and punctuate correctly. Or your post will be automatically dismissed. At least to me it will. I’m not the brightest crayon in the box, but I know what a comma is for!
And if you send me your resume, please don’t e-mail me saying “R U looking for an employee?”
No. I’m not. Not until you can spell out the word. And that actually did happen more than once.
People will always disappoint you, as you will them. It may take a while, but forgiveness lightens a heart and gives you less wrinkles. At least, it should.
#11: Don’t Drink Two Glasses of Wine and Do a One-Handed Cartwheel on a Hardwood Floor
I just learned that two weeks ago. And I have a badly sprained shoulder to show for it.
#12: NEVER buy the screwtop wine.
You’ll thank me for this, kiddos.
Cheers to living, learning, getting older and kind of wiser.
Be kind, love one another, bad grammar and all.