(March 21st to April 19th)
DON’T take that job offer. It might seems like a great opportunity, and sure, it’s a LOT more money, but do you really want to move away to a state that smells like cow manure just for a little extra cash? And what about all the friends you’ll leave here? And what about all the friends you WON’T make there? I’m telling you as a dear friend—DON’T take that job offer.
(April 20th to May 21st)
DON’T spend any more money gambling. If you’d paid attention for ten minutes in second-grade math class, you would realize that gambling is designed to impoverish the gambler and make the casino rich. Think about what that casino looks like, then compare it to where you live. The odds are stacked against you.
(May 22nd to June 21st)
DON’T choose pleasure over love. Yeah, he’s hot, and yeah, he gets you off like no one has, but deep in your soul you know you’ll never love him. And even though he has you singing a happy tune at the moment, sooner or later you’re going to feel cheap and used.
(June 22nd to July 22nd)
DON’T try to get back together with your ex. You know it’s a bad idea, he knows it’s a bad idea, all of your parents know it’s a bad idea, and every last one of your friends know it’s a bad idea, but especially you and him know that it’s a bad idea which will only burn away all the good memories you had and leave only ashes and bitterness.
(July 23rd to August 22nd)
DON’T forgive anyone that you don’t feel, deep down in your guts, deserves to be forgiven. Some people are genuinely sorry and try to repair the damage they’ve caused; but a lot of other people only seek forgiveness so they can feel good about themselves and fall asleep at night. If you feel they don’t deserve your forgiveness, be smart and don’t forgive them.
(August 23rd to September 22nd)
DON’T drink and drive anymore. Why do I even have to tell you this? You’re lucky that what happened wasn’t a lot worse than it was—you have no idea how lucky you are. So please, if you want to have a good time, and we all do, make sure you can do it safely. No one needs to get hurt just so you can have some fun.
(September 23rd to October 22nd)
DON’T alienate that wealthy family member. Believe me, I know they’re an asshole. Everyone does. But think about the long game—in a quarter century from now, gritting your teeth and being nice to that asshole relative may mean the difference between failure and success. Trust me, I know how tempting it is to confront assholes and put them in their place, but it’s definitely not worth throwing away a future you might not otherwise have.
(October 23rd to November 22nd)
DON’T fall back into your bad eating habits. I’m talking about the dairy and the sugar and the carbs and fried foods and the pounds of butter and lard and rich sauces and creams and that time you ate every last morsel of icing off that birthday cake and saved the cake for later. It’s enough. Eat a vegetable every once in a while. Pack a piece of fruit in your lunch. If you don’t, as sure as I’m living, your body will start to yell at you, and none of us wants that.
(November 23rd to December 21st)
DON’T take your loved ones for granted. You never know which relative might befall a horrible fate this year. And you’ll be stuck in your tracks, realizing that you’ll never, ever again see the uncle who took you to the carnival when you were in kindergarten because the two of you were petty enough to argue over politics at Thanksgiving.
(December 22nd to January 20th)
DON’T repeat any of the mistakes you made in 2017. Do I have to make a list for you? OK, the mistakes in romance, the financial mistakes, all the bad health decisions, the legal situation you found yourself in, and the fact that you ended the year not one inch closer to any of your life goals than you were a year ago. THOSE mistakes.
(January 21st to February 18th)
DON’T forget to be kind to strangers. Ooh, baby, it’s a wild world out there and we all know it’s dangerous. But being rude to someone you never met may not be the wisest thing in such a world. Saying the wrong thing to the wrong person in the wrong place at just the wrong time would just be, you know, WRONG. Be kind to strangers is all I’m saying. You don’t have to give them your wallet or purse—that would be stupid and unnecessary unless they’re pointing a gun at you—but don’t go out of your way to be rude to them. Listen, please.
(February 19th to March 20th)
DON’T give up on your biggest dream just because it hasn’t come true yet. You don’t want to be come just another one of those people who marches slowly through life playing it easy, living in a dull little world and never reaching your goals. You have two tasks this coming year: 1) Figure out what’s getting in your way; 2) Move it out of your way.