The best part about being young is that you look good and things don't hurt yet, but the worst part is that you are an idiot. Here are some rules I've learned to be less of an idiot.

 

 

1.  Don't lie.

I was a pile of shit, lying teenager, so I get it. You do it because you don't feel good about yourself and you don't want people to know you're actually a pile of shit. The thing is, people find out you lied, and then you become something even worse: an insane pile of shit. You're better off having people feel sorry for you and your lame life than have them think you're a crazy, delusional liar. 

 

2. Reframe your past.

The coolest things about me now only came as a result of the unique horrors I've experienced, and it's the same for a lot of other talented people I know. Holding on to anger or depression about unfair things that happened to you is a massive waste of time. Besides, people who've never had awful things happen to them are the most boring, one-dimensional garbage people ever. Embrace your shit and move on.

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3. Talk less, say more.

The most painful thing to listen to is someone going on and on talking in circles. Know where you're going before you start to tell a story. If you're trying to make a point, boil it down to one or two sentences. Only include the most relevant details. It will make you seem vastly more intelligent than you are and it shows you respect other's time, which will make them respect you.

 

4. Bad relationships aren't worth it.

Whether they're friends or family, relationships that are significantly more painful than pleasant should be discarded. Don't keep dating someone you can't stand because you don't want to be alone. Don't keep anyone in your life that requires you to change who you are just to be around them.

 

5. Take care of the good relationships you have.

If you have people who understand and love you, do whatever it takes to hold on to them. Forgive them when they screw up. Don't hold them to an insane standard. Accept them unconditionally. Try to recognize the difference between them accidentally pissing you off and them trying to piss you off. If it's an accident, let it the fuck go immediately.

 

6. Keep a part of yourself separate.

We come into this world alone and we leave it alone. Be OK alone. Be a weirdo by yourself without ever telling anyone. Talk to yourself. Be happy alone so that when others let you down, it doesn't feel so devastating. If you are OK alone, the shitty things other people do won't affect you as much.

 

7. Let your soul leave your body sometimes.

Eventually, unforeseeable things will happen in your life that feel so suffocating and paralyzingly horrific, and for your own well-being, you need to be able to shift yourself into neutral. Losing your mind isn't a noble way to honor whatever happened. It makes everything significantly worse. In my experience, watching any Real Housewives show will help me get to that state.

 

8. Blow out your happy moments.

When good things happen to you, make a really big deal out of them in your mind. Take a good long time to live in that moment. Throw a party. Get celebratory drinks. Buy yourself candy. Whatever. If good things don't happen to you a lot, blow it out even bigger. Extend that good feeling as long as possible.

 

9. Be openminded.

I can't even tell you how many things I've done that I was, at some point, vehemently against. It's to the point where I don't even want to feel too strongly about anything, because I think the universe will find a way to make me do the seemingly unimaginable again. Just chill with all the rigid opinions about how everyone should be, because everything could flip and then you'll feel like a real dummy.

 

10. Like whatever you want.

I will never like a lot of music or movies that are considered cool, but I would rather that than waste my time trying to force myself to enjoy them. People can judge you all they want, but anyone who excludes you for not liking a particular band or TV show is a fucking garbage person who you shouldn't want to know.

2020 Chelsea Lockwood. All Rights Reserved.