Wednesday, January 18, 2017

_news: *the day after new years* *stares off in the distance, haunted.*_

Guys, the places I’ve been. The things I’ve done. And look it, I made it. We all made it. It’s 2017, and we’re all still here, still taking pictures of our cats in shoe boxes and obsessing over the Nintendo switch.
So, yeah, let’s talk about 2016. It’s been…I don’t even know what it’s been. It’s been incredible, it’s been draining, it’s been heartbreaking and terrifying and unreal all in the same breath. The only thing it hasn’t been is boring. And looking back, I realized I had inadvertently followed through on a bunch of new years resolutions I didn’t even make. Seriously. I ate better, exercised more, advanced my career, and reduced my stress (as much as a college kid can), coming out the other end altogether leagues closer to the type of person I want to be, I found that what had changed was not my life but my perception. Objectively, I’m still in the same place I was a year ago, still have basically the same problems. But now, I feel like I can handle them. My problems don’t knock me down like they used too. So I figured, why not write a sappy post about it. Because, in the end, what else did any of you expect?

So, here. Try doing some of the stuff I did. See if it works for you.

Read a good freaking book.
Not a popular book, not an easy read, a good freaking book. A niche little cult classic that’ll stick with you long after the pages run out. Example, over the break, I read John Dies At The End by David Wong and BOY OH BOY DID IT WRECK ME. That, my friends, that was a good freaking book. The writing snob in me didn’t complain, not once. That...that has not happened far too long.

Just write. Write really stupid stuff. Write stuff you won’t show to anyone ever. Write something with the only intention being to be a story you like. Read it when you need to give Sophocles a rest. Then go back and write something that you want to shove in all your friends faces. That is how good stories are made.

Eat better.
Emphasis on the better. Don’t be a hero and throw out all of your ice cream in one go, you’re just going to be grumpy and have ants. Start by buying more fruits and veggies. Once you’ve got the hang of that maybe leave Captain Crunch on the shelf next time you’re at the store. Keep making little choices. You’ll get there in your own time.

Pretend you’re already a professional.
You see that open mic or get an ad in your inbox about a contest or get an offer to pitch your work to a pro, don’t think about how there’s no feasible scientific way you’ll succeed. Pretend like you already have. Surprisingly enough, it works.

Don’t stress about _______. 
Whatever ______ is, don’t worry about it. It’ll work out. Humans, by definition, are resilient and resourceful creatures. We naturally adapt to our circumstances and find a way to make it through. As a being with a pulse, you inherit that legacy. And, believe it or not, you can fix your problems and not worry about them at the same time. Revolutionary, I know.

Make plans.
Don’t let yourself get stuck, don’t let your life be work and sleep. Go sit down at a coffee shop, watch a movie you wouldn’t usually watch, go to a new restaurant. Refresh every once in awhile.

And that is what I’ve got. 2017, here I come.