It’s finally come: the one, single, solitary day of the year when we publicly honor the women who have changed our diapers, cooked thousands of meals for us, provided a shoulder to cry on—oh, and, not to mention, given birth to us. Here’s a few life lessons I picked up along the way:
1. You will still care what you look like after you’re 40, despite what you may think now. So wear sunscreen.
2. Happiness is far and away the single most important thing in this complicated life of ours… And amazingly, it’s all our choice.
3. A shared trait amongst humanity: people love to talk about themselves. Learn to be an interested listener and you’ll make friends fast.
4. There are rare times when buying clothing full-price is a good idea. But it also might be better in the long run to buy the $88 Anthropologie shirt over the 8 $11 Forever 21 shirts with the seems already splitting up the sides.
5. Indulge in the f-ing cupcake.
6. It’s okay to let friendships end. You’re not going to be best friends with the same girls you gossiped with in the high school cafeteria and your entire sorority clique won’t be invited to your wedding. It’s less important to have more friends and more important to have true ones.
7. Never pass up an opportunity to use the restroom on road trips.
8. It’s better to be single than in an unhappy relationship.
9. Always send thank you cards.
10. Live within your income. Cereal for dinner is perfectly fine.
11. Your parents and grandparents are the only people who care to hear your GPA, the compliments other people have given you, and any other brag-worthy news in your life.
12. Never leave your drink unattended.
13. There are so many fish in the sea… But really.
14. Be nice to the nerds. Well, be nice to everyone, but especially the nerds.
15. Parents honestly do have your best interests at heart, no matter how much you may try to avoid their advice.
16. Spend money on memories, not things.
17. Spend time in the real world, not the virtual. Did you actually partake in that incredible adventure if you didn’t Instagram every detail of it? Yes, you still did and you could probably enjoy the moment a tad bit more with your phone turned off.
18. Pick up the damn phone when making intricate plans, rather than relying on a string of endless and confusing text messages.
19. Don’t dumb yourself down for attention. There’s nothing wrong with being intelligent, admitting you like to read, watching documentaries, and engaging in discussions about the world.
20. Think twice before putting anything in writing.
21. You can literally do anything you want with your life if you’re willing to put in the dedication to get there.
22. Middle school boys are immature. High school boys are immature. Most college-aged boys are immature.
23. Never pass up free samples in the mall of perfume, soft pretzels, or cookies. You can bypass the cheap Asian station with the rubbery, unswallowable chicken, if you so choose.
24. Your college major doesn’t set the course for the rest of your life. If you don’t like your first job, quit (once you’ve found another, hopefully). These are the times to explore what you want and what you don’t: in careers, love, and life.
25. Look to your father for characteristics and qualities to look for in your own future husband. Don’t look for tall, dark, and handsome. Look for honest, smart, and “can laugh at himself.” Looks will fade, personality won’t.