Twenty Things I’ve Learned:
My friend, the lovely, talented and funny writer Tee Tyson, recently did a Things I’ve Learned vlog:
If you haven’t watched it, you should! I laughed at several and mulled over others, and it gave me pause to think on what I’ve learned, at almost twice her age, with the perspective of a therapist and people helper.
1. Niceness: it DOES matter. What kind of world would this be if we all gave into our nasty, jealous, greedy, murderous, slanderous impulses? So, when in doubt be NICE and even though not everyone will like you (that’s inevitable) the world will be a pleasanter place. If you must, get those evil impulses out by writing crime novels, like I do!
2. Global Warming: if it wasn’t that, it’d be something else. Because of #3.
3. Death and Taxes: yep, no matter how you wriggle and squirm, they’ll get you in the end.
4. Gum: chew it often, it makes you smarter. Research shows it increases circulation to the brain.
5. Dreams: they aren’t just too much pizza and beer. Your subconscious is trying to communicate! Listen to it or it’ll keep tossing you off that cliff (or having that bear chase you, etc)
6. Dogs: they are here to keep the human race company, make us laugh, warm our feet, and give us stuff to do in the yard involving shovels and shit.
7. Chocolate: there is a God, and there’s proof he loves us because of chocolate. (I like creamy milk chocolate with almonds or hazelnuts, mmmmm)
8. Orgasms: they are everyone’s right and you don’t always have to be granted them by a partner. Figure out how to get some and get some regularly. (Men don’t seem to have a problem with this)
9. Old Age: unless Death & Taxes get you first, it’s going to happen to you. Planning for it and taking care of yourself physically are a good idea or you’ll end up somewhere you don’t want to live, not wanting to live.
10. Nature: daily, extended doses will improve your perspective and mental health. I pity the poor souls who live in cities and can’t understand how they do it.
11. The Zombie Apocalypse, Piercings and Tattoos: I don’t get it. I just don’t. Chalk it up to the Generation Gap.
12. Laughing: also makes you smarter, not to mention happier. Laugh at Zombies if nothing else.
13. Doing Good: The best antidote to feeling crappy is to do something for somebody else. Next time you are grumpy, make yourself do something NICE and see if it doesn’t help. C’mon, I dare ya!
14. Money: You CAN have too much. But most of us will never have that problem, so don’t worry about it.
15. Jobs: It’s REALLY important to figure out what you enjoy doing and can make a living at because you’ll spend more waking hours working than any other activity. It’s worth experimenting around until you find that thing—then any amount of time, money and education is worth it to get to the goal. I love what I do and it took 12 years of college (at the speed I went) to be able to do therapy with people, and it was well worth it.
16. Stereotypes: they exist because humans’ brains categorize things as a way of saving energy. They should, however, be examined when they pop up as they may not be useful (see blog entry It Will Make You Fat)
17. Red Meat: I prefer not to dwell on where it came from, but I’m not giving it up until my doctor makes me because of encroaching #9. Very little food on the planet can beat a perfectly done ribeye with some rock salt and mushrooms. We evolved eating this kind of thing, so how can it be wrong? True, we didn’t live much past forty…
18. Health Care: We should all be able to have the health care we need, not just the rich and steadily employed. I say make a constitutional amendment to that effect, and yeah, charge me more if you must, for eating steak!
19. Cell Phones: I used to hate them. Now I believe more and more, we’ll do everything on them and hopefully save trees in the process. But people, please don’t fight, scream, gossip and grumble on them in front of others. We’re listening, and we don’t want to know.
20. Internet Friendship: Facebook has brought people back into my life I hadn’t seen since high school and deepened many a relationship. Authonomy connected me with a community of writers all over the world. Twitter has brought hundreds of new readers to stop by my blog at least once—and I’m delighted to tell you, most people are exactly as they represent themselves when you meet them in person. I used to think everyone making friends online was really a paunchy, middle-aged pedophile in a pair of boxers, and I’m very happy to be wrong.
So here’s Twenty Things I’ve Learned, in no particular order. Why don’t you tell me some of yours?