Life is short. I know this mostly because I watch too much Grey's Anatomy and anyone who has watched at least a few episodes of that show knows that people are always dying. Always. (Hey, if you haven't seen it, tune in TONIGHT for the start of season 9 and you'll understand!)
Anyway, we've all heard the inspiring statements: Live life to the fullest! Live every day as if it were your last! Live like there's no tomorrow! Seize the day! You can sleep when you're dead! (that doesn't sound very inspiring though), Etc..
I'm all for the motivating let's-get-pumped-up-and-yell-Gladiator-style conversations, but that might scare people on the street, so here are some things I'd like to bring up in a calm, written fashion.
1. If something doesn't feel right, STOP IT.
I don't care if it's a job, relationship, hobby, habit, etc... just end it. Because yeah, there are good days and bad, but if it's 95% bad days and you cling to the good days like I cling to my comforter when I'm not ready to wake up, it's really not worth it. There are better jobs out there and you may not find the one of your dreams right away, but you will. If your significant other makes you feel less confident and secure on a regular basis, pull the plug and move right along. Yes, it's easier said than done, but after a couple of weeks of only remembering the good times and wondering if you made a mistake and if you should call him or her, you'll suddenly feel better and it will be easier and you will find something better because love is about support and full acceptance! Worried you're turning into a gossip after noticing most of your conversations become stories about other people? Then just stop! You're in control of your actions and decisions. Those actions make up your character. Don't let yourself get walked all over on by a person, place, or thing. Punch that noun in the face! (Figuratively, of course) (Also, using exclamations really helps with an inspiring speech, right?).
2. Listen to yourself and nobody else (most of the time).
The other day, I was buying a dress for an upcoming wedding and I must have stood in front of the mirror in the dressing room for approximately 20 minutes. No, I'm not a narcissist (gosh guys, way to jump to conclusions), I just couldn't decide if I should get the dress or not! All I wanted at that moment was to have a shopping buddy who I could turn to and ask: "Yes or no?" That's how indecisive I've become, apparently. But the point is, it's so easy to rely on other people for simple, or complicated questions/decisions. I think it's important to stick to your guns and your gut (both are expressions, right?) because you really do know yourself better than anyone else. Don't take your power of making choices and throw it away because exercising that power on a regular basis really does drive our confidence as individuals - it makes us who we are. Of course, if you think it's OK to do something dumb like drink and drive and everyone tells you not to, that is NOT the time to exercise your power and ignore everyone because you are just being dumb.
ANYWAY! Some people like to control things that they shouldn't... and you shouldn't feel guilty for not taking their "advice" or feel coerced into doing something you're against or not doing something you feel passionate about.
3. Definitely sleep, but don't be lazy all of the time.
I wake up between 4:45 and 5 AM which means there are a lot of nights that I find myself in bed by 8:30 ready to crash. But I'm learning that planning that dinner with friends or attending that surprise party or going to see that concert is totally worth the zombie eyes the next day (also, I can make up the lack of sleep by going to bed at 4 PM the next afternoon!). But this isn't just about sleep, it's about putting in effort. Has a friend been needing some extra love? Send him or her food. The term "comfort food" had to come from somewhere! (Actually, I Googled it and couldn't figure out where, but still). Have a day off and feel like staying in your sweats? Do it for a couple of hours and then get your booty up to go see the world outside! How can you seize the day from your couch? I mean, yeah, you can apply for scholarships and internships and contact an old friend and do awesome things like that, so if that's what you're planning then, okay, yes, keep seizing the day! But you know what I mean.
4. Stop your whining!
If you have an awesome opportunity, soak it in and enjoy it instead of complaining about it because it's something that will shape your life forever and those experiences don't come around every day. If you get in a fight with your parents or significant other, don't post statuses on Facebook that will make your friends hide you from their timeline (because they will, trust me). If you're not invited to a party, don't mope around and feel sorry for yourself - throw your own party! Seriously. There is nothing "carpe diem" about being a Negative Nancy. We all have our moments of feeling depressed, homesick, alone and/or misunderstood, but find something that makes you happy and stick to it like glue until you feel normal again. Listen to Ashlee Simpson (come on, somebody has to have that guilty pleasure), bake cupcakes (and bring them to me), put in a video game where you can blow things up, watch your favorite show on repeat, buy a pizza, pray, start a photo album, go for a walk, do whatever makes you happy and keep on keeping on! (With or without the Kardashians).
Live life with no regrets (did you think I forgot that one? No way!) is all I'm trying to say. Don't let fear of rejection, fear of others' opinions, fear of the unknown get in the way of your dreams and happiness. It's true when they say that you'll never know what can happen until you try, whether that's trying to live your own life before working on a relationship again, trying to write a book, trying to meet one of your heroes, trying to eat better, etc... We're all on our own roads in life and shouldn't let anything keep us from enjoying every second of our journey and letting our light shine.