10 Promises I Made To Myself For Living Well When I Was Severely Ill

A few months ago, I had a major health scare. I won’t bore you with the details but think the Big C. It was terrifying, but being faced with your own mortality is one of those things that put life in perspective.

Not knowing what was happening with my body was one thing, but not knowing how much time I had left in the world was another, I came up with a list of rules and ideas I promised to follow if the clouds ever parted.

1. If he/she doesn’t text you back, doesn’t listen to what you have to say, if there’s no electricity, or if you find yourself analyzing or making excuses for their behavior, move on. It’s not worth it. You have the right to be loved so strong it pulls you into each other harder than gravity.

2. Stop drinking shitty coffee. It’s not worth it. Love yourself more than that. And for the love of God, hydrate. Challenge yourself to drink some more water. It’s the extra pep in your step in the morning that’ll help you level up your day. Oh, and vitamins. Vitamins are pretty legit.

3. Spend more time by yourself in the world, be more comfortable with who you are, disconnect from the screen you’re seeing the world through and read a book, talk to a stranger, travel, smile openly and laugh fully.

4. Share your story, talk to people that have lived life, even briefly, just like you. Those crossovers can sometimes help cement relationships that you never ever though could blossom into something magical. I recently cemented my relationship with a beautiful Argentinean who blows my mind daily with her quirky and thoughtful insights on the world around her. It all started with finding some common ground.

5. Sometimes we’re broke bitches, which happens, but treat yourself. Buy a bath bomb, or a good bottle of wine, or maybe even donate a buck to help fund some kind of research or volunteer to bathe puppies. If you don’t invest in yourself, who else do you expect to do it? There’s no prince or princess waiting to whisk you away to Saks because of your magical smile.

6. That thing you’ve been holding onto… let it go. You’ve got one life to live and it’s not worth wasting any more precious time or energy on being miserable or upset….or even mildly irritated. You know what I’m talking about, if it’s been a day or a decade, you’re given a fresh start every morning that you open your eyes. So just move on. If you can’t forgive, just forget.

7. If you hate your job, find a new one. You’re not doing anyone any favors being where you are. Find what makes your heart beat faster than a hummingbird and run with it. If you can’t quit, then cut back or add to what you’re doing. If you want to be a comic, start a YouTube channel a la Jenna Marbles. 200 videos and 4 years later the woman is a monstrous success, all because she posted a video and it took off. You’ll fail 100% of the time if you don’t try.

8. Exercise. Five minutes a day. Then add to it. Progress is progress and your ass will thank you.

9. Try something new once a week and talk about it with your family/friends/peers/neighbors/WOW Guild. Cook, Yoga, Hike, Skydive, Write, Paint, Volunteer, or Explore.

10. Be selfish. Skip the family dinner. Get your nails done by yourself if your friend is a flake. Don’t go out of your way to do anything for just anyone. On the flip side, hold doors open, help your friend change a flat, grab the check. Do what you love, and fuck the rest. Do what feels good and as long as you’re not hurting anyone, you’re helping yourself. Thought Catalog Logo Mark

featured image – Josh Angehr

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