27 Pay-it-Forward Pearls of Wisdom

Happy Birthday, to me! Today I’m 27. I thought recently about how l don’t share any personal writing. I’m always writing for a specific outlet, with particular parameters. But hey, this is my show!

So, from the depths of my sarcastic soul, I present to you — in no particular order — some nuggets of wisdom that have done me right thus far. Hope they do for you, too.

Do you make a wish when you blow out the candles?

Do you make a wish when you blow out the candles?

  1. Be ballsy. Seriously. I don’t mean to get all “motivational speaker” on you right out of the gate, but I’ve found that the more you go for things, the better your chances are at not only getting what you want, but impressing yourself in a way that does wonders for your self confidence. So really, just go for it.
  2. Travel by yourself. And take note of the places with good blow driers. This is cliché, I’ll admit it, but traveling alone is amazing for so many reasons. I happen to travel alone for work often, but taking time to explore by yourself is empowering, fun, and really tests your sense of humor when there’s no one there to laugh with! The blow drier comment is self-explanatory. With long locks like mine I need a device on a literal power trip that can get me to the show quickly.
  3. Travel with someone you really care about. Ah, yes, having someone there to laugh with — it’s a no brainer. When you’re experiencing beauty and wonder with someone — anyone — whose company you really enjoy, it will knock your socks off.
  4. Write a personal creed. There’s a term called “UX”, short for user experience. If each person you interact with is a “user”, then what is the “experience” you create? Don’t draft up a whole, scary plan. Have fun with it. It’s more for your own personal reference when you’re bugging out. My personal creed is called “Be a Badass Mother Fucker” and yes, I will share it with you if asked. (Yes, it’s really called that.)
  5. Read books. I say this because I feel like we all stopped. Does no one love the crack of an open binding on a good old-fashioned hard copy book?
  6. Write to your future self. See if your goal setting is really worth it.
  7. Implement social media posting parameters. If you’re going to post content on social networks, post with purpose. I post to make people smile/laugh; support my work; or raise awareness to an issue I think matters to everyone. Set some structure to keep social special. Otherwise you’re THAT friend.
  8. Don’t compete with other people, in any way, ever. Learn to celebrate them and yourself. You also should watch this episode of South Park, because Trey Parker and Matt Stone are geniuses and know how to break it down.
  9. Always pay it forward. Spend time sharing what you know.
  10. Life’s too short for shitty paper towels or toilet paper. I stand by this warranting a spot on my list.
  11. Pay attention to what makes you anxious. We live in a culture that is anxiety-ridden. We’ve abbreviated “Xanex” to “Zanny” and that’s concerning. Funny, but concerning. Take the time to work backwards and you can re-engineer your thoughts. Just stay committed to it.
  12. Think critically. This is the most important piece of advice I ever could offer. Stop and think about why you do what you do. In our meme-obsessed culture where information spreads like wildfire, it’s easy to be misinformed. Don’t get duped.
  13. View life as one big marketing campaign. You’re on the receiving end of stream of content, information, and messages, all the time. Consider how, not if, you’re being told to think or behave. There is always a call to action somewhere — is it working on you? Is it doing so negatively or positively?
  14. Keep a ritual that means something to you. I make it a point to take my dog for at least one long walk every day. In that time I reflect about what I’m grateful for, and get to connect with my pup.
  15. Make a list of personal mentors. Mentorship is way more organic than one might assume. Mentors or everywhere. You can “be mentored” simply by assessing people who interest you and analyzing his or her path, as well as how it relates to yours.
  16. Take care of your body. You only get one. We can’t control a lot in life but something we can control is our personal intake. Oh, and don’t be hasty enough to leave quality of consumption to anyone else. The powers that be are more interested in catering to demand than practical welfare. That’s on you.
  17. Think about who your “move a body” friend is. I once read this great op-ed (you can check it out here) that not only made me laugh, but also happy to know I have one. (Shout out to the pop tart).
  18. Learn how to be happy right now. It’s all we’ve got. Willie Nelson said it best: “I take it not only a day at a time, but a moment at a time, and keep it at that pace. If you can be happy right now, then you’ll always be happy.”
  19. Keep yourself organized. That may mean “organized chaos.” So what? A rule of maintenance thumb is to tidy up on Tuesdays and Fridays. Start there and you’ll find your format.
  20. Stop Keeping Up with the Kardashians. If there’s no demand for them, they just might go away. You can call me a hater, but I’m really just a person who’s mad that anyone cares to listen to these imbeciles. I’ll objectively note that they are good looking and intelligent business people, but there more opportunistic than they are sound individuals.
  21. Stephen Colbert & Jon Stewart will tell you what you need to know about what’s happening. Stick with them, because there aren’t many who are going to bring you the news you actually can use.
  22. Don’t pay full price. The right information is always readily accessible. You just have to go look for it. You will find it cheaper somewhere else. Oh yes, you will find it.
  23. Cite Nike every day, and “Just do it.” Put a little “swish” in your attitude.
  24. Call your parents and tell them you love them. Don’t forget. They love it.
  25. Try something totally new and outside your box. The coolest things happen there. I knew only one song by the first band I interviewed. I thought I had no business interviewing them, but then I made it my business. It opened the floodgates for this collection of killer clips!
  26. Watch “Six Feet Under”, the entire HBO series. You can thank me never, and you’re so welcome.
  27. Commit to revolution. Do it simply by changing the way you think and act. The rest will follow.
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