I'm 35 now. Here's an arbitrary number of things I've learned.

19 Jan 2020

Photo by Kimberly Farmer on Unsplash

Toxic masculinity makes you less safe, not more.

Getting over it and letting go of it are two different things; the first may never happen, the second is probably essential to health and happines.

Loving someone is never a good enough excuse for letting them hurt you.

Sometimes bad things just happen; sometimes they happen to you.

Take responsibility for your actions, don’t take responsibility for the actions of others.

It’s okay to feel relief or even joy when abusive people die.

No one owes you anything, nor do you owe anything to anyone else.

Learning to trust yourself is extremely helpful in learning how it feels to be around trustworthy people.

No is a complete sentence.

Anxiety dancing wears you out, joy dancing energizes you; both have their uses.

Negative self talk is you trying to keep yourself safe, it’s also inappropriate and unhelpful. It can be both.

You don’t have to call your mom.

My first, greatest, and most important love affair has been with myself.

Good relationships multiply joys and divide grief.

“Doing nothing” is actually an essential part of doing something.

The secret to having a great partnership is to pick someone kind and trustworthy and then act accordingly.

Therapists are to people as mechanics are to cars.

Not all therapists, friends, jobs, houses, places, etc. are created equal; it’s healthy to seek out situations that serve you.

Quitting is for people with priorities.

This is not a race, do things at the rate and on the timeline that makes sense for you.

When I’m being critical of others, it’s usually because I’m unhappy with myself.

If someone tells you that you’re too much for them, listen. They’re probably not enough for you.

Believe people when they tell you who they are.

Maing mistakes and living with the consequences are both essential to growth.

No mater how recovered, responsible, organized, or devout you are bad things will still happen to you. Those tools are meant to help you through, not prevent you from experiencing life.

Life is pain and joy interwoven.

Knowing and practicing your values in a healthy way makes big life decision making a lot easier.

Whenever possible, give the peope who will be most impacted by your actions the most input in your decision making process. *

My relationship with myself will determine my ability to achieve my goals at any given moment of any given day.

The antidote to anxiety about global or national politics is to read and learn about local issues which I can actually have an impact on.

Everyone loves a card.

Using sunscreen and lotion is self care, going to the dentist is self care, paying your bills on time is self care, sleeping and eating a healthy amount is self care.

Toxic positivity will kill you.

“This is how it’s always been” or “that’s how it goes” are not valid excuses for perpetuating generational trauma.

Apology without action is meaningless, but apologies can be a helpful way to share your intentions and telegraph your actions.

People need regular food, a decent amount of sleep, a good and safe home, time to be creative, access to nature, socialization, alone time, and positive affirmation to be happy.*

You’ll learn and forget the same things over and over in different ways your whole life.

Your body has access to wisdom and memories that your mind does not.

Anyone who tells you there’s only one way to do somthing is either lying or stupid. Possibly both.

“There are no silver bullets, only lead bullets.” -Ben Horowitz

The longest and most successful con is to be kind to others, live an honest life, allow yourself to trust and be trusted, and work hard on what matters to you.

Before sharing something personal ask yourself “do I trust this person?” Do I and should I are not the same thing.

Just because someone expects you to do somthing doesn’t mean you have to do it.

It’s okay to lie in order to avoid people who lie to you.

There’s no such thing as a healthy relationship in a toxic system.

Just because you can endure somthing, you have done it in the past, or you would again in the future doesn’t mean you have to do it right now.

It is okay, essential even, to plan for success.

You can honor your grief and still get back up.

Expertise is the ability to know when you don’t know.

You don’t have to answer a statement.

You don’t even have to answer a question if you don’t want to.

Don’t talk to police, don’t run towards a commotion, don’t say “yes” when you mean “no,” don’t commit crimes with white people.

Don’t hurt other people physically or emotionally unless you must do it in order to get them to stop hurting you or another vulnerable person in that moment.

“You’ve got to learn to leave the table when love’s no longer being served” -Nina Simone

Feed people.*

You only have one life and one body; learn to take joy in that.

It’s cheaper to buy an expensive thing that will last 10 years than it is to buy a cheap thing that will last one year.

Learn to distinguish between something that’s quality verses something that’s mearly costly; this goes for relationships and activities as well.

It’s okay to let life change you. In fact, that might actually be the point.

* In this instance, you are people.