1. Whether or not you’re using your college degree.
You went to college; you have the PTSD surrounding finals and the dings in your liver to prove it. The fact that you went and graduated is an accomplishment in and of itself. Most people aren’t doing something that is 100% in line with what they spent Monday, Wednesday, and Friday studying for four or more years. Be proud of yourself and eventually take Sallie Mae’s call; she’s unfortunately a relentless bitch and you gotta face her some time. But don’t let the title underneath BA or BFA or B-whatever hang over your head forever. It’s fine.
2. Your relationship, or lack thereof, status.
It’s not 1975. You’re not old and destined to die alone because you’re 27 and flying solo to the company retreat this year. If you’ve been in a relationship for five years but there’s no ring or wedding in sight for the new future, that’s chill. If you are comfortable without labels you do not owe an explanation or an apology to anyone. You have to move at a pace that’s right for you and stop comparing yourself to fictional characters and Pinterest boards.
3. Your weight.
If your resolution or whatever form you’re making is about your actual health or setting some sort of fitness goal that’s awesome, and more power to you. I will not run said marathon with you, but I will happily make a witty sign and grab beers with you after your 26.2 miles of hell. But know that weight distributes so differently on everyone. Weight is relative and not something to stress out about. The number on the scale should never be a part of your goal because it is a goal that will almost always leave you feeling disappointed.
4. If you’re “too old” for something.
I am a 26 year old, tax paying, job holding lady and you bet your ass I bought a t-shirt with cartoon cats all over it last week. The only thing you may be “too old” for is if you find yourself on the Tyga end of a Kylie Jenner situation. But really…that’s just being gross and teasing the law more than anything else. Moving on.
5. Panicking about not being “where you thought” you’d be.
If you’re anything like me you probably spent a heavy chunk of 2015 freaking out because you felt eons behind where you’d anticipated being when you were in high school thinking about the future. You probably cried a lot, stress ate stuff you shouldn’t have, and annoyed your friends to the point where a couple took a break from you. But you know what? Things have a funny way of working themselves out if you stay driven and just put your nose to the grind and go for it. So don’t panic about the where you “should” be, and know that you’ll get there when you’re meant to.
6. Society’s standards about beauty.
Everyone is saying we should have big butts and lips but you kind of dig your skinny ass and Clara Bow mouth? You tell society to STFU and rock it. Let’s all ban together and hope that 2016 is the year where we all start to feel hot as hell and stop trying to attempt to all look like one specifically trendy celeb. They are gorgeous, of course, but so are you.
7. People who make you feel like shit.
I spent a stupid amount of time in 2015 trying to impress some people who I know now, were never really interested in me as a human being. I wasted months trying to weasel my way into their little club and for what? To feel awful about myself and remember how shitty it felt as a middle schooler to not be a cool girl? Yeah, no thanks. Life got so much better when I said, “You know what? I AM cool as hell and if they can’t see it then I’ll move on.” Friends should make you feel and want to BE better; not make you feel like you’re on the outside looking in with FOMO. Cut those jag off’s out of your life this year and never look back.
8. Being proud about being a couch potato.
Listen. We all have our days where all that is going to happen is 13 hours of Jessica Jones and Postmates. It’s chill; it happens. But there is a glamorization lately of the person who is one with their couch and frankly, it’s kind of gross. You should want to feel good and like the best version of yourself and part of that is getting out and doing things. Maybe it’s as simple as taking your dog for a 40 minute walk instead of just letting her out in the backyard, or maybe you start doing yoga classes. Maybe it’s as simple as working from a cafe instead of your bed; I don’t know! But do something. Your heart and your mind will thank you for it.
9. Any and all judgement about someone’s sexuality.
Guess what? You don’t have to fuck them! So why do you care who they’re doing the horizontal shuffle with? It is 16 freaking years after we were all so sure we were going to die, or at least all elevators would cease to function, from Y2K. Let’s accept that sexuality is fluid and can change as easily as someone’s hair color and just not give a damn if someone is healthy and happy. It not your business. K? K.
10. The stigma surround mental health.
We applaud people for going to gym, we encourage people to go to the doctor when they get a rash, we need to have the same mentality surrounding when someone takes the reins on their psychological well being. No one should feel like they need to go to their therapy session in secret. No one should be unpacking a suitcase at their friend’s and hoping that the orange bottle with their Xanax wasn’t spotted. Something like a quarter of adults in America have been treated for mental illness. So you’re not alone and it’s time we all stopped making anyone feel that way.
11. When someone ghosts on you.
Yes, ideally 2016 would be the year where this fucking terrible trend dies, but reality is with technology being our primary form of communication, it probably will not. So if someone isn’t texting you back or is ignoring you on social media, don’t waste your time stressing about them. Go live your best life without them and don’t lose any sleep over someone who is enough of a coward to hide behind not even sending a, “Not interested” text.
12. How many likes or favorites something gets on social media.
The fact that any of us have deleted a Tweet or an Instagram because it didn’t get the level of attention we were hoping for is just plain sad. Sure, the validation is kind of nice, and the affirmation that you are funny or pretty or just pose against a brick wall in a really “candid” way is cool. But how long does that cool feeling actually last? A minute? Only until your next carefully crafted joke or close up shot of an artisanal donut? That’s what I thought.
13. Not listening even when you know you’re going to disagree with someone.
I am a big fan of a certain internet comedian and I noticed the other day that she has a really terrible habit of always yelling her views and opinions at people. And while 99.9% of the time I agree with her, I’m wondering how effective her method is. Maybe if we all stopped shouting and waving our arms and just trying to be the loudest we’d actually be able to have a conversation, find some common ground. Sure, your blood may boil while listening to the other side, but at least you’re giving them a chance to state their opinions. Wouldn’t you want them to do the same? It’s an old saying but, “you catch more flies with honey than with vinegar,” so even though those flies may be annoying and wrong AF, you should still treat them with the same kind of respect you in turn would want.
14. Being afraid of the unknown.
How will you find the things you love if you’re not trying because you’re afraid? No one changed the world by living vicariously through YouTube and Cheryl Strayed novels. If something scares you a little that probably means it’s going to end up being a defining moment or experience for you. You’ll never regret the things you tried, only the things you were to afraid to take swing at.
15. Sweating the small stuff.
Let’s stop allowing our unfinished laundry and running ten minutes late in an Uber to ruin our entire days. There are so many other problems out there and crazy shit happening that is deserving of concern or your anxiety. Stop misplacing it to things that literally do not matter. The sweaters will eventually get folded and you’ll arrive at your destination in one piece. It’s not worth getting worked up over.
16. Trying to control 2016.
Reality is we will almost positively see a list just like this about 2017, so let’s just agree do our best and hang on. Because it’ll probably be a wild ride.