A common critique I often get is that I expect everyone to “be just as perfect as me.” The gag is, despite my Disney Channel-esque branding, I am practically the queen of bad luck and questionable decisions. I make so many mistakes, that sometimes they are even premeditated. Just to make sure I have someone to cosign my insanity, when I know I’m about to do something wild I always call one of my partners-in-crime to ‘stop’ me from doing what I plan to do anyways.
I always start with the preface “Before you judge me, remember that time you _______? Good because this may sound crazy, so roll your eyes like you haven’t done worse.”
Remember that time you slept with your ex? You tried to convince us to collectively his car? Tried to dye your hair Rihanna red and ended up looking like a chocolate Bride of Chucky? You pretended like you didn’t know that he had a girlfriend? You catfished someone? You drunk texted half your contacts?
No matter who I called, I always had something to fill in the blank to justify my shortcomings. As a good friend, I never judged anyone for being less than perfect. However often we forget to use that same logic towards ourselves. We obsess over how awful human beings we are for being flawed. We let our secrets haunt us for years. We have anxiety attacks over what other people think about us and then freak out even more about how we now negatively perceive ourselves. We forget to be our own shoulder to lean on. We expect ourselves to reach an unattainable level of perfection, forgetting that everyone around us is also making equally horrible mistakes as we speak.
You should only regret your mistakes if you didn’t learn anything from making them.
So you slept with your ex? The way I see it, you took a risk, put yourself out there, and was honest with your emotions. It just means that you are just as flawed as every other human being on the planet. Don’t ask yourself “how can I undo what happened” because you can’t. The real question after making a mistake is “alright this happened, but how do I bounce back and grow from it?”
Throughout your lifetime, you have and will continue to make a plethora of mistakes. The good news is that means you also have an opportunity to grow from each and every one them. Look at your downfalls as the chance for you to evolve into your best self.
And keep evolving. Change your major three times. Spend all your grocery money on concert tickets and live off 4 for $4 specials for the week. Have a situationship on the side of your relationship. Get an unfinished tattoo. Cry in public places. Chop off the hair you spent all semester growing out.
It builds character and makes you learn how to jump through hoops, overcome adversity, grow, and figure out who you are. Name a successful icon without a major conflict in their biography. I’ll wait. Don’t cry over your metaphorical sex tape, turn it into a million dollar Kardashian-esque empire. You’re being too hard on yourself if you never forgive yourself for taking risks and taking Ls.
It’s just one step closer to you becoming a more well-rounded hustler, finesser, innovator, and miracle worker. Enjoy all the steps, the good, the bad, the awkward, and the in between. Live shamelessly.
For those of you who thought that this article was going to spill some tea about my personal life, sorry (not sorry) for the click baity title. Obviously, you weren’t listening when I said I’m not about to tell you all my business. At least not for free. Just wait on the best-selling memoir.