Ten Reasons Why You Shouldn't Get Your S**t Together

  1. You might not be done sowing your wild oats. You have a few “I Don’t Give A Shit About You But Let’s Get Physical” sexual experiences left in you because you don’t want to be responsible for anyone’s feelings but your own. And since you don’t know what you want, you might as well find out what you don’t want.
  2. There’s something oddly satisfying about burning the candle at both ends. Leading a functional life while everything around you is a hot mess can sometimes feel like the greatest achievement. “How many nights can I spend fucked up while still getting straight A’s or performing well at my job? I don’t know but let’s find out!” It’s a thrill to tear at the pieces of your life while maintaining a semblance of normalcy. It’s sort of a “fuck you” to everything you learned growing up too. You’re going to do bad things and still do really well at this whole life thing. Take that, DARE!
  3. There’s beauty in the chaos. Your apartment is a rotating door of friends, parties, and music. People come in and feel like they’ve entered wonderland. Every day is a new glamorous adventure. Routine isn’t for you yet.
  4. You want to take advantage of every precious moment of your youth. You want to say “yes” more than “no.” No midlife crisis for you! You exhausted every facet of being young. You soaked it all up. The ones who were wound so tight in their twenties are the ones who go crazy later anyway. When would you like to be insane? 23 or 46 with two kids?
  5. You don’t want to do what everyone else is doing. Screw the invisible pressure to conform and have this or that by the time you hit a certain age. You’ll experience things when you want to experience them. If you’re happy, that should be all that matters.
  6. You open yourself up to more opportunities and people. By having no set rules for your life, quite possibly anything can happen. Although this can be scary and backfire, it can also be liberating.
  7. Your life is good. You have good friends and lovers. Everything seems like it is in its right place. So why would you go and change it just because someone else doesn’t understand it? People have a fixed idea of what’s right and what’s wrong. There is also an inflexible definition of success and people are quick to look down on others who aren’t fitting the mold. The irony is that your friend who works as a barista, sleeps with a lovely assortment of people, and gets stoned before watching Intervention might be happier than you—the young professional with a dog.
  8. It’s important to be a disaster for awhile. People love to get high so they can sink low and bring themselves back up again. They like not having their shit together so that when they actually do, they can say things like, “Remember those insane nights we had in college? Those were the daze!”
  9. Getting fucked up is fun until it’s not. Have your beautiful moment in the wasted sun and enjoy every moment of it. Just leave before you get a sunburn.
  10. The second best thing to being a 20-something survivor is to be a 20-something nightmare! TC mark
image – Reality Bites

Ryan O'Connell

I'm a brat.


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  • Oilcanlickit

    I liked why you SHOULD get your shit together much better. I favor articles that don't encourage and support the idea of fucking everything up. Call me boring, but i'd rather be a 20-something survivor, instead of a 20-something prick.

    • http://galbatross.wordpress.com Duke Holland of Gishmale

      I think having your shit together or not is mutually exclusive with being a prick. You prick.

    • http://www.noahtourjee.com Noah Tourjee

      Its not encouragement its acknowledgment. This article rounds things off a little with Ryan's post yesterday.

  • Ewok

    I'm a 26 year old with a career and who already owns his own house. Yeah, I'm so unhappy. Way to encourage underachievers. Oh, and I have a german shepherd boo hoo hoo.

    • http://galbatross.wordpress.com Duke Holland of Gishmale

      I think you missed the point.

    • Megan

      Have you seen the opposing one? Go read that!

  • FC

    I think you just rationalized my current lifestyle.

  • http://twitter.com/MissKimball misskimball

    I agreed with all ten reasons. Is that fucked up?

  • http://thetangential.com Becky Lang


  • aa

    I hate how so many things you write have this underlying assumption that everyone is having sex with multiple people several times a week and that is the norm, even if I know it is generally not true. Or maybe it is. :'(

    • xra

      not everyone, just 50% of chicks with 10% of guys

  • http://www.facebook.com/profile.php?id=42002098 Mage Baltes

    Seems like this article might be better retitled, “Ten Reasons Why You Should Put Off Getting Your Shit Together,” because so many of these reasons include an implication that you WILL get your shit together eventually (whatever that means).

    I dunno, I guess I prefered the opposing argument.

  • Amy

    ..and by “you”, you mean “I”?

    • Teukros

      This.  This is the response to every O'Connell piece.

  • http://twitter.com/Erikhaspresence Erik Stinson

    “There’s beauty in the chaos. Your apartment is a rotating door of friends, parties, and music.”

  • http://twitter.com/stefamafone Mos Stef

    Man, it must be nice to be a financially stable white male who probably gets help from mumsy and daddums. There's “live the dream!”, and then there's just being completely unaware of all of the privileges that you have that allow you to write a piece like this.

    I'm getting my shit together because I have no choice. Most people don't. If that's surprising to you, cut the umbilical cord and get a true taste of the real world.

    • inflammatorywrit

      Whoa, I hate this comment so much.

    • http://www.noahtourjee.com Noah Tourjee

      You really need to keep your judgments in check. Mostly because posting seriously aggressive Assumptions about someone is plain stupid.

      • http://twitter.com/stefamafone Mos Stef

        I'd rather be ~seriously aggressive~ than passive-aggressive. Wipe your tears, little one.

      • http://www.noahtourjee.com Noah Tourjee

        You're really being a jerk, whats with that?. Feel free to insult me again or call me a cry baby. Something tells me you want to.

    • Fox

      I really like your response. Took the mind right out of my thoughts. Or something like that. I've traveled this country for a year by foot and thumb, and I've met most amazing people. I've also found out  where thinkings like this article get you. It's not always horrible but it is most definitely probable for those w/out a safety cushion… mumsy and daddums? Ever met a crack whore? Well a lot of em were 20 once and not giving a fuck. Hell Im not even 20 yet and I'm happy to be beginning the process of getting shit straight… refreshing.

  • one

    instability and chaos is only fun if at the end of the day you have the privilege and ability to escape it.

  • http://profiles.google.com/mopeyprincess mopey P

    Nooo. I really loved the first opposing article. I tried so hard not to read this one; I'm having way too much fun lately, and maybe not in a good way.

    #2 is so tempting and you think you can have it all, and I totally believed that I'm ” going to do bad things and still do really well at this whole life thing.” And it was fun for a month or so, but then the lines start to blur and a lil bender becomes a whole spiral and everything is bad and oh my god how am I not fired yet??

    Okay okay, I'm going to re-read the first one and take deep breaths, not xanax.

  • Lils

    everyone is taking this a bit too seriously. lighten up, people!

  • savvyskrill

    I think the people who disliked this article are just sad that the chaotic days of their youth are coming to a close. Whatever. #4 is great.

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