The following points are things that I’ve learnt over the course of the last few years. Of course, I find them hard to put into practice on the daily but I still try my best to remind myself of them as often as possible. Here’s a few things that I’ve learnt which I hope will help you, too. We’re all human and we’re all learning and, as the saying goes, we’re all just trying to lead each other home, right? Right.
You Cannot Control What Others Think
You can waste so much time in trying to get others to like you, or lose yourself in trying to please everyone around you. It’s a known fact that we cannot please everyone but we still try to. Of course, sometimes people dislike us with good reason – if we have offended, say sorry. If they choose not to forgive you, move on. Not everyone in the world will like you but, my god, hold fast to the ones that do. These are the ones who understand your weirdness and celebrate it with you. These are your tribe – put effort into your relationship with them, always.
You Have No Obligation
You are not obligated to love everyone until you burn out. As the saying goes, “you can lead a horse to water but you can’t make it drink.” If you have given your best advice, if you have given people countless chances, if you have been shown ingratitude in exchange for kindness, and if you are in the midst of a toxic relationship – STOP. You are not responsible and, in fact, you take away people’s autonomy if you aim to control their every move and keep them safe. We all need to make our own mistakes and find our own paths. Sometimes we need to step back and let others do as we have done, too.
Wherever You Are…Be There Totally
Put down the phone, look people in the eye, stop day dreaming, and ask someone about how they’re feeling. Whatever minute you find yourself in, be there. Make happiness where you don’t feel any; find that sacred, inner peace when you’re unrested. One day this will all be in the past so soak up as much of it as you can now to enrich the memories of tomorrow.
If It Won’t Matter In 5 Years…Don’t Give It 5 Minutes
I swear by this one! Listen – if you’re panicking about a certain event or situation, ask yourself “Will this matter in five years?” If the answer is “no”, then do not worry about it today! It’s simply another transient stress that will pass along with the setting of the sun. Of course, if the answer is “yes”, all the transient worries that you have discarded will leave you enough energy to deal with the problem at hand. All that needs to be sorted out will be sorted out, so chill.
Money Can’t Buy Happiness…But It Gives You Options
Yes, buy the shoes! Of course, purchase the handbag! I’ll rarely dissuade you from doing so…but, be sensible. Money can’t buy happiness but it does give you options to enrich life a little bit more. You can go travelling and experience another culture, or have a lovely dinner date with that person you love. Always try and have a little bit saved for those rainy days and don’t be afraid to spend it when life does send the showers!
Experience Everything…But Don’t Spread Yourself Thin
Invest yourself in hobbies and past-times, but try to find a few that really set you on fire. Life is short, of course, but that doesn’t mean your time should be spread so thin. In saying no to some things and saying yes to others, you get to really dive deep into the dormant talents you might have. Learn to play the guitar, drums, saxophone, fucking flute, whatever…but if the drums make your heat beat a little faster (oh, the pun was absolutely intended), ditch the saxophone and flute to invest more in there. Jack of all trades and master of none is not going to be as enriching as really finding the thing that sets your passions burning.
Accept that you’re human and you are liable to fuck up regularly; life will suddenly feel a little easier. With that being said, you will upset people with your words or actions. It’s inevitable due to aforemenioned humanity. Being a mature adult, however, is all about taking responsibility for what was said and done, understanding how it effected the other person, and apologising. This is empowering for you and, also, the other people involved. Everyone is understood, there’s no bullshit to hide, and congratulations – you’re not acting like a child anymore. Win-Win.