7. Learn how to say “I’m Sorry” – Without continuing to sound like an asshole. A shitty sorry looks like this, “I’m sorry, but….” Adding anything other than the reason you are sorry after you say said apology is counter productive. You don’t say sorry and then justify why you hurt them in the first place. More often than not, I have not exactly quite understood why I hurt someone or pissed them off and even have gotten wildly defensive that they would call me out. I have learned that my feelings really don’t matter at this point. At this point I must simply take my ego out of the picture, look at theirs and say, “I’m really sorry I __________. Is there anything I can do to make it right?” Psssssssst….this one is really fucking hard to do. ESPECIALLY if it’s with your significant other and you feel that they should be apologizing to you because what you’re apologizing for only happened because they were being completely ridiculous. Tit for tat ya’ll…am i right?! Unfortunately, no. It’s a vicious cycle really. Great apologies and putting yourself in other people’s shoes are not going to happen overnight. But now that you have read this, maybe you will be aware of it next time and instead of digging yourself a bigger grave and looking like a complete douchehole, you can pause, think about how you really don’t want to hurt the person you love and just say you’re sorry. And mean it.

8. Real friendship means being so mad at the other person you quietly threaten to yourself to not be their friend anymore – Mercedes, what the fuck are you talking about? This sounds like some middle school shit. If you are getting mad at your friends, so mad that you are at the point of calling the whole thing off and saying “Fuck you, and your perfectly shaped eyebrows!”, then you’re doing something right. How? Well, both of you are probably being real with the other person. It’s not all fluff, and blasts on Facebook about how much you adore each other and can’t live without the other….every 3 days. No, it’s blowing up on your BFF when she’s being just a tad too needy and telling her to go get her own fucking vanilla soy frappucino. This is only an example. But that’s what real friendship looks like. It’s just as important as your romantic relationship. Because even when a romantic relationship ends, your best friend(s) are gonna be there to help you pick up the aftermath. You have to be real, you have to be vulnerable, you have to let your friends see the not so glamorous sides of you and embrace them together. They are your catalysts for growth. They are the only human beings on this earth that will be able to point blankly tell you something offensive, however true, and you say, “Maybe she’s right?” About 2 days after you write in your journal that maybe she needs to fall asleep for a week to give her subconscious ample time to find and remove the proverbial dick that’s been lodged up her ass.

9. Adopt – Fur babies. and children too. Everyone needs love!

10. Get comfortable with solo dates – In other words date yourself. When I was in my early twenties, I couldn’t imagine going anywhere “alone”. Now, I LOVE when I get the opportunity to grab dinner and a drink by myself. I’ve also gone to a theatre production alone, even dressed up and bought myself some flowers. However totally weird, I felt great. You have to spend time on yourself, being in the quiet of your own crazy head and really appreciate what you have going on. It is now imperative to my insanity that I have alone time and even though I may not be able to go wine and dine myself, I’ll sneak off in my hole and write for a couple of hours or go soak in the tub. So yeah, alone time. Do it. Like everyday.

11. Have sacred space – Have things that you do only for you. Not for putting on FB or instagram or twitter to share with the world. Though our online lives all look like mini Reality TV shows nowadays, it really is beneficial for your well-being and self-esteem to have shit that you do for you. I used to take pictures of my food ALL THE TIME and put it on Facebook or instagram. Most of the time I was out with friends or my boyfriend and would interrupt perfectly good conversation or a delicious moment savoring scallops to, “What are you doing”, “Hold on a second, I’m showing all 259 of my friends how impeccably well these scallops are cooked.” It’s fucking dumb. If it’s that imperative that you inform your social circle about your diet, wait to post the picture until you’re in the car on the way home. We waste too many moments on the desire to stay connected to an online world that is just a facade anyways. Keep your sacred space sacred. Do things with the intention that it’s solely for the nourishment of you. And next time any of you see a picture of food on my Facebook, feel free to call me out.

12. Stick up for yourself – I punched someone in the face my first night I was in Guam. Was it the most spiritual, kind, zen thing I could have done.? Absolutely not. Talk shit, get hit. In all seriousness though, in my defense, he deserved it and I have zero tolerance for asshole males that take the liberty of saying really inappropriate things to me and then grabbing me like I’m the last oreo in the sleeve. I am by no means telling you to go around punching people if they piss you off. Violence is bad, seriously guys. But if you don’t start sticking up for yourself, people will always walk all over you. Sticking up for yourself can simply mean not hanging around certain people anymore or voicing those boundaries we wrote on the walls of our bubbles in the last post. It can even mean not engaging in an argument with a combative person. Bottom line, whatever you put up with will continue.

13. Take care of the people you care about – If they are sick, call them and ask if they need you to bring them anything. Or just show up at their house with Chicken Soup from Straub’s. If you are out drinking, make sure they get home safe and don’t let them leave with weirdo people you don’t know. If you know they are having a rough time, use your imagination and come up with something to cheer them up. And especially in romantic relationships, just because you have the person now, doesn’t mean you can stop trying to “woo” them. The second you get the mentality you no longer have to try because you have it in the bag is the second the other person is going to realize they deserve better. Be better. Make an impact. The little things matter. I have a horrible memory, I know, shocking… I couldn’t tell you more than 10% of the gifts I’ve received in my lifetime. However, I can tell you every moment that someone made me feel incredibly special either by surprising me with a gift out of the blue, writing me a letter or just-because email or taking care of me when I needed it the most. Life is not about accumulating wealth and friends, it’s about cultivating the relationships you do have and loving the shit out of the people you care about. With a little looooooove, and some tenderrrrnessss.

13 down…Almost halfway!!!!