1. i'm going to start this one off with one of my favorite quotes from a man repeller article this year that has become my motto for my upcoming 27th year: FUCK THE WAFFLING. YOU'RE NOT A TOASTER. there's a whole lot to grab from this. pinch off what you need and pass it around.
2. you don't have to accept advice! you don't have to tell anyone anything! run into the forest and never come back! my new years resolution this year was to tell my friends less about my problems, precisely because they are wonderful, giving people and will offer advice freely. which i'm so glad about, but that advice, while well-meaning, tends to throw my gut off its axis and send me into an overthinking tailspin. my new rule of thumb: you can tell two people who are as close to your moral and mental compass as possible on this one particular issue, gather their wisdom like a pilgrim during gourd season, and then trudge on. when anyone inevitably offers advice, you can kindly go, "you know what? i just need to vent. that would be best for me right now, but thank you for being a real damn gem."
3. take back your apologies! i will often redact a "i'm sorry i'm so overwhelming / too much / asking for things" with a quick "actually, not sorry!!!" "too-much-ness" is misogyny of the highest order. can we all start calling men's emotions overwhelming? because i am HELLA overwhelmed by predominantly male emotions this year, whereas female emotions are feeling pretty fuckin bull's-eye-spot-on.
4. not all passions should be monetized. i'm still learning this one, but it's always good to know that sometimes working within one of your passions sucks all the fun out of it and is largely not worth it. i am an advocate for working passion-adjacent, and reserving my full-blown-hard-on passion for my free time.
5. KNOWING YOUR ASTROLOGICAL MOON SIGN CHANGES EVERYTHING. everything. (i whispered this last part.) my life / my inability to stay still / my need for novelty makes so much more sense now that i know my nearly-always-crying pisces self was born under a flighty-as-hell sagittarius moon. DM me, i'll do your chart for you, i-swear-to-goddess.
6. i'm going to repeat this again because i honestly need it, too: you only need three friends. not "three hour brunch friends", like three true blue friends. the ones who will leave the party to go buy chips at 3am with you and pick your ass up from the airport and go stoned-shopping with you after you did sumdumbshit (this is italicized because it's french!) every time you see facebook photos of your friend's bridal parties of more than 3 people (and you're like "uh, how?!?!"), know the other 6+ friends sit on a throne of lies in a kingdom full of deceit surrounded by tributaries that flow with trickery. you have no real reason to feel like a loser and i think you're doing really well for yourself.
7. have you seen wyoming lately? no? change that! on the one hand, don't mistake "adventure" for a damn personality. similarly, let's all stop fetishizing international travel, because i honestly believe those who are obsessed with travel as proxy personality haven't found where they'd be happiest living or what their own country looks like because it's not as "exciting" as international travel. one of my dear friends makes buffalo, ny look like an OASIS and soaks up everything there is, whereas sometimes i see pictures of friends in europe and i see their clenching fear grip on reality through the whole insta-charade and it makes me kinda sleepy. i had a friend text me recently that she felt wildly undertraveled and me, realizing the time of year (this horribly nebulous time between christmas and new years), did some good will hunting math problem solving to realize 1. everyone has vacation time now and 2. everyone wants to look impressive now because of the creeping existentialism of the upcoming new year to make up for the relative boringness they are afraid they succumbed to the previous 11 months. i told her to wait until jan 2nd, until everyone gets boring again, roughly. like, we are all so boring and i just wish we would all be okay with it. also, gotta say it again because i really think you might be missing out here: have you SEEN wyoming lately?
8. you can tell people specifically how to talk to you. i've learned the most from babysitting in my free time the last 6+ years. one child in particular, while possibly damien the anti-christ, taught me the most. after she spent 30+ minutes hitting me, scratching my arms (i have the bruises and scars to show for it), she kept yelling and screaming at me about how much she hated me, amongst other threats that also included death (cuuuuute! luv ya, girl!) at one point i decided i was going to say back, calmly, "you can't talk to me this way" and "i'm not talking to you if you talk to me this way" over and over again until she got bored with me and went back to her ipad. you can also just be silent (which i think is scarier). as i said these words out loud (and not just in my head), i felt a fire in me that was not dissimilar to how guy fieri's stomach reacts to about 80% of the food featured on diners, drive-ins and dives.
9. you'll think that there are some inalienable truths in this world: what goes up must come down, karma is a bitch, and you should never have to find bacon in the diaper of a child you're babysitting. these truths and others will be tested often. stay flexible. and then ask the parents wtf is going on.