A Classification of Man

Dating

Women have a tendency to believe that just because a guy has a penis, that immediately makes him a man.

It doesn’t.

In fact, the penis is a defining character of a man but capability of erection ≠ define a dude entirely. In my wide travels of the world (and the many men who inhabit it) I have found the following evidence to be corroborated across the country by the male population*. Women have the capability to multi-task; oftentimes finding themselves in a constant balancing act between girl and woman which pretty much starts at age 13. Men, however, begin their stage of life as a boy, transition into a guy, and then finally mature into a man.

Now these stages, while dependent on age, are not wholly determined by it. I have met men who are 15 and I have met many, many a boy who is 30. In addition, men are usually catapulted into a new phase by circumstances surrounding them – various pressures force them to grow up into the men they usually aren’t expecting to become. Additionally – just because a man enters into a phase doesn’t mean he can’t backslide into one (think about a man after a break up…he becomes a boy again, even if temporarily) which speaks to the fluidity of life and of man.

New let’s get down to business.

Defining a Man

Ryan Gosling: still adorable and loveable as boy. But really…what are you gonna do with him?

a.) boy: usually a male will be a boy from 12-23. He probably wearing jeans he hasn’t washed since…we’re not really sure when because he doesn’t know how to do his own laundry. He is unstable, unsure of himself, and unaware of the repercussions of his actions. Think: high school boys with acne, frat boys trying desperately to fit in, and boys who refuse to grow up  such as grown men who play video games all day, don’t do their dishes, and expect a women to become their mothers…because they are boys. Boys will be boys and that means boys will break your heart – accidentally of course – just like they broke their mom’s favorite statue. “Accidentally”

Ryan Gosling: Still so hot as a guy, but just can’t seem to get shit together.

b.) guy: usually 23-29. He is in a transition phase. He’s a little more confident in himself. He’s also beginning to get in tune with what he wants in his life. Which may or may not be playing guitar, writing poetry, power lifting, or fantasy football. He’s beginning to figure out how to do his own laundry…some of the time, like when he invites a girl over to ‘hang out’. He’s actively pursuing a future but he’s probably still broke (ie: grad students, entry level jobs, start-up entrepreneurs). Although he’s matured from a boy into a guy – he’s still unable to communicate feelings effectively, cares about himself and his life before the needs of others and he will probably choose his bros over hoes any day. As a girl, you’re just something he has fun doing…sometimes.

Ryan Gosling: as a man, he is everything and more. He buys groceries and rocks a mean suit. Oh and he’s still gorgeous.

It just felt like there should be one more photo of Ryan Gosling.

c.) man: usually 29-onward. There is a light that goes on with men as they approach 30 (because as young adults we becoming increasingly aware of ourselves as we move from 2 to 3…like toddlers) so he’s starting to get his shit together. He knows who he is and what he wants. He wears matching socks. He’s got a good job with a stable income. He has a home that is decorated (ie: he has a comforter that matches his sheets) complete with detergent he buys for himself. He has his own life that he genuinely wants a woman to be a part of. You will have an adult relationship where you compromise, where you go on real dates, and ultimately learn what it feels like to be treated as a woman. He understands what it means to care about other people (ie: he picks friends up from the airport without groaning, takes responsibility for getting your keys when you’ve locked them in the car) and actively steps up to the plate to take responsibility for someone other than himself.

It’s this shift that presents an opportunity for women to be girls. Since we’re not stressing out about everything from dishes to dudes and all the way back to dicks – we can focus on having fun. When men stop being boys or guys and start to be men who step up and take part in the responsibility – both partners can find balance in being adults while quietly slipping back and forth into childlike bliss with each other.

And the laundry always gets done.

*This writer is completely inept at understanding men and shouldn’t be trusted even remotely on this subject.

A Tinderella Story

Dating

I will probably be one of the only people who will ever openly admit that I unashamedly used* Tinder.

And you will probably not be the first person to judge me for it.

Please excuse me while I step up onto my dating soapbox for a moment. The stigma attached to Tinder is something I want to openly address to everyone who gives that ridiculously judgmental, mouth agape, unbelieving stare to their friends when they admit to downloading the app. The disbelief that anyone half-way normal would use a dating app is that incredulous to you? Did you know that serial killers have a disproportionately low purchase rate for smart phones? And yes, I may have completely made that up, just like most people make up the fact that only closet shut-ins and sex addicts use Tinder. Which they do, but it’s not like everyone on there is a psychopath. But here are a couple weirdos I’ve come across in my travels around the Tindernation:

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Meeting on Tinder: You download a ‘dating’ app that links to your Facebook profile. You list photos of yourself that display your attractiveness/fun demeanor and have a small blurb about you. You begin pursuing profiles of people (after selecting the age range and physical distance you are willing to go). You swipe right or left to say ‘Yes’ or ‘No’ based on a completely superficial profile based on looks and common interests/friends pulled from Facebook, and if both parties say ‘Yes’ then ‘It’s a Match!” and you can start talking to them. Now take a gander at what has been said:

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(What I’m displaying here is probably not going to help the case I’m arguing, but honestly some of what you see on the app is too funny not to share sometimes)

The main point that I want to make to everyone is that using Tinder is absolutely no different than meeting someone in a bar. Yet for some reason, meeting someone in a bar and going out with them is a completely acceptable social norm and meeting someone from Tinder is chalked up to be the equivalent of signing your own Missing Persons report.

Meeting in a bar: Initially, you scope out the bar seeking someone who is relatively the same age as you that you are relatively attracted to physically. Then you tepidly test the waters with causal eye glances to let them know you are interested and to see if it reciprocated. When mutual interest is confirmed, you start a conversation – attempting to find common ground with intelligence, humor, interests, or a shared affinity for the same beer. Depending on how your evening is going, you may only spend 10 minutes talking to a person who previously was considered a stranger and give them your phone number. In which case, you accept a date with them on the pretense of a drunken interaction, trusting that because you met them in public in the first place, they couldn’t possibly murder you.

I’m sorry, but that’s pretty much the same thing. Don’t worry though, I’m not fooling myself into thinking I’ll meet the perfect Tinderfella. I am aware there are varying factors that you can’t see on the internet like height, vocal pitch, and a genuine spark that can’t be manufactured over clever messages – but my core argument is the damn stigma attached to this app is overwhelming and I think it’s unwarranted. If I want to sit from the comfort of my home in my pajamas and search for the potential next love of my life during commercial breaks instead of going out to do it – I don’t want to be judged for it.

In a growing and changing generation, we are altering the way we form relationships both romantically and platonically. My friends can get to know me by quickly checking my latest Instagram posts, we can review our love interests on Lulu, and we can literally watch a newborn family member grow up on Facebook – all under the pretense that it is easier to gauge a person through a screen than in person. It’s no surprise to me that a generation of boys who grew up spending their free time playing Call of Duty with their friends using a headset, instead of sitting side by side, would choose to once again place a screen between themselves and a potential conquest.

As friend requests become more frequent than handshakes, we’re trading the Classifieds for Craigslist, and exchanging newspaper articles for 120 character Twitter posts, or worse, Buzzfeed GIF lists. Can it be so hard to believe that dating is the next form of traditional communication that we’ll bypass?

I would argue that it’s already happening.

Briana Blog

*Upon completing this post, I promptly deleted Tinder in favor a traditional dating methods, like stalking cute men in coffee shops longingly.

Thrifty Dating

Dating, Shopping

*Disclaimer: I apologize in advance for all the selfies in this post.

Since taking my unplanned hiatus from blogging, I’ve had a lot of time to do other things. Take away a 21st century kid’s WiFi connection and she’s forced to do things like read books, interact with humans outside of Facebook, and be outside. Go figure. I’ve also had time to do a lot of thrift shopping around the Fort Worth area. In addition to finding some great jumpsuits, belts, and the occasion denim poncho, a thought occurred to me today: the way I go thrifting is similar to the way I have been viewing dating, as of late.

A few thrift store finds.

Allow me to further explain. When I go to a thrift store I don’t go to find the latest trends or to have some item that every other girl is wearing around town. I could have bought that shit at Forever 21 if I wanted that chevron striped blouse or neon pink mini dress. 

No. I’m at a thrift store to find that one item that is buried underneath racks of clothes I would never consider. That one item that’s worn in, that’s old news, that has character, that has a history behind it’s seams, and most importantly – one of a kind in a sea of worthless crap.

My dating parameters reflect the same notion. I’ve realized that I can’t date a cookie cutter guy who loves Coors Light, goes to the gym or plays video games in his free time, works at some sort of business that involves finance or real estate, and wishes for nothing more than for the Texas Rangers or the Dallas Cowboys to get to the playoffs this year. That just isn’t right for me. Neither is the guy who wears Buddy Holly style glasses, wears plaid in the middle of the summer, rides a bike because he’s ‘saving the environment’ and can’t afford a car, and spews the same hipster bullshit I hear all the time.

There’s a guy for me somewhere who can make me smile as much as a floral printed jumpsuit. He’ll also fit me just as perfectly.

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Ignore the awkward pose, in reality this thing looks bitchin’ on me.

Looking over the racks of discarded clothing, I also realized how many loved things end up going back into a sea of unwanted items. How many lovers will I end up discarding over the years? Will it be comparable to the amount of unwanted plaid pant suits with shoulder pads? Maybe. But that’s life. We use and consume until something becomes undesirable to us. Whether it’s because it’s last season or because it forgets your birthday, somehow and some way, clothes and people start to become nonessential to our lives over time.

But the cliches still remain tired and true: one person’s trash is another person’s treasure. There’s plenty of fish overalls people in the sea. There’s got to be someone out there for each of us. Someone who fits into our lives as perfectly as a blazer fits into my wardrobe. Someone equally as fabulous, outrageous, original, but definitely worth more that $2.99. Someone like a shirt with a shark on it. You just have to dig to find something truly unique.

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The Vicious Cycle

Dating
The Cycle

Photo horribly drawn by Briana Wucinski

Here it is ladies and gentlemen. In all my artistic glory, I’ve depicted The Vicious Cycle of Dating. Although I did not draw the reverse arrows, the cycle can happen starting with the nice girl turning the nice guy into an inevitable asshole.

Either way you spin the cycle, we all start out as nice people, yet we all get hurt one way or another and it alters who we are and how we treat our next romantic endeavor.

I will admit that I was the bitch who turned a nice guy into an asshole. Sometimes it’s not intentional, it just happens. And I’ve met guys who are all assholes to women because they were hurt. People cheat. They lie. They tell you what you want to hear. They leave. They say hurtful, demeaning, and terrible things. Putting someone through that will torture a good soul, twisting it into something darker. Do I believe deep down, hiding beneath every sarcastic, dickhole comment, that they truly are nice guys who just want to love and be loved in return? Yes. But it takes finding that one nice girl that’s left somewhere in this big, beautiful and brutish world to remind them who they truly are.

Good luck and God speed to you all.

I Think They Call This a Breakthrough

Dating, Drinking, Personal

It’s amazing I was single.

At the ripe old age of 14, I was in lOvE with boys. I had my fair share of unrequited teenage crushes which resulted in a devastating amount of hours listening to Blink-182 in my bedroom decorated with collages of teen heartthrobs who I would never meet. Thinking back, I realized it’s not too far off from today. I’ve traded Blink for the Black Keys and the collages for photos of European places I ca’t return to quite yet, but ultimately I’m still pining away for the unattainable in my bedroom.

And it’s amazing I still am.

Why do we sit and wait for the right time or the right man or the right thing to magically manifest itself while we causally sit at home drinking wine? (besides the fact that wine makes everything better in general and increases the flow of time exponentially)

I think my inaction stems from a fear of getting hurt. I’m not sure if that’s the entire reason why I’m reluctant to put myself out there – but it’s definitely part of it. Just like everyone else in the world.

So that’s why I’m not having it. I’m keeping my butterflies in the cocoon. I’m ripping the buds off before they bloom. I’m humming in the drizzle instead of singing in the rain. (I’m also realizing I don’t really know many metaphors for being in love).

I’m picking men I can’t have relationships with. Foreigners who will eventually take their sexy accents back to where they came from. Or I’m the foreigner who will be taking my un-exotic self back to Texas. They have a schedule completely opposite from me. There’s construction on the way to their house. They live 20 hours away. They are too old. They are in a different place in life than me. They aren’t happy enough or they aren’t making me happy. I don’t want to be someone’s girlfriend but I don’t want to just be a piece of ass.

From one extremity to the next, I’m toeing this line between what I want and what I can get. But this the kicker – I have no idea what I want. Just like every other woman on the planet.

Realizing that is all fine and dandy but what’s there left to do? This obviously:

And it’s amazing that I will continue to be single until my untimely death due to alcohol poisoning. Cheers!

And afterwards? In all of the inexplicable abyss of options, I’m left with an inability to make any decision that seems right. That’s why your twenties are about doing and then learning (ah!) and I’m learning that whether I’m consciously making the choice to be with someone who is unattainable, I’m making the choice nonetheless.

Someone pass me a beer. All this personal reflection is making me thirsty.

I’ve also made the realization that I may use alcohol as a numbing agent. Whoops.

Expiration Dating

Dating

Dating with an end point in mind is complicated. It’s a mind fuck. Because as real as the emotions are, there is almost a sense of falsehood in every word. They’re laced with a timed anthrax that will inevitably wreck havoc on your psyche.

I mean maybe that’s a little bit of a strong metaphor, but dammit I like this boy a lot.

When I first started dating The Hillbilly (I realize the risk of using this nickname may conquer up images of men in coveralls. Which, incidentally, is partly accurate. However, he’s hot and doesn’t have a beard or gray hair, so there’s that) I was attracted to him for a number of reasons. He was funny, he was so damn cute, liked live music, and most of all was extremely laid back. So I wanted to keep things casual. We liked each other and we hung out. At some point I would leave for Austin and essentially we would shake hands and walk away.

Sometimes I think I may be constantly drunk, because even in a perfect world that would never fucking work out. Which it didn’t.

A friend recently called to my attention that despite my bro-like tendencies, I am a hopeless romantic deep down. Accurate as she may be, I hope and wish and pray that I could stop. I root for the happy endings. I want the couple to end up together or get back together. I think we should tell each other our feelings. I know there’s someone out there for everyone. Basically, like every girl in America, I overdosed on Disney movies as a kid, coming of age movies as a teen, and romantic comedies as a young woman.

Damn you media.

I’ll admit a small part of me had high hopes for the Hillbilly. But when we told me that at the end of the summer he is moving out West (I’m seriously not kidding about the country boy thing) that small part sank deeper than Jack from the Titanic.

I came face to face with the inevitable end of the relationship. No matter what I say or do within the coming months, we will shake hands and walk away. In a split second, his potential to become something more than just a memory vanished. I’m caught at a crossroads. Do I continue down this road, steadily increasing my miles per hour towards a crash I knowingly find myself hurtling towards? Or conversely, do I abruptly stop, get the fuck out of the car, and aimlessly try to hitchhike, knowing that I prematurely altered my destination.

I know this whole decision is making for some great metaphors, but in my head I’m at a loss for words.Although, I’ve had it argued to me that relationships end for a myriad of reasons and distance shouldn’t be one of them, I learned my lesson about distance last year. Distance can and does end budding romances, no matter how strong the feelings (or the accents) may be. Hell, distance ends grounded relationships too.

Timing becomes something more than the intangible, it becomes a force in your life, coming into a direct collision with your plans. It begins to decide for you, without your consent, raping you a choice in a matter you feel you should have a say in.

Was raping too strong of a word? My apologies. Timing is bitch with a sick sense of humor.

Natural Sightings of Manly Behavior

Dating

As I detailed last week, I’ve been hanging out in the country a little bit. While all the sunshine, campfires, and homemade eggs for breakfast have been incredible, I’m certainly getting something more from the experience.

Unbridled access to men and what they do every day.

Let me tell you, it’s not that interesting.

But there is definitely some merit in to this window of normally hidden male behavior. Men have these incredulous imaginations about what women do when we’re together. Naked pillow fights, wrestling in jello, telling our friends how big your dick is, etc. The ridiculousness of these fantasies is just one of the many parts of the male psyche women will never understand. Alternatively, women imagine us telling your friends about how great we are, how we seem to smell amazing and that you can’t wait for us to meet your parents.

I would rather a boy mention to his friends how awesome I am at racquetball or riding unicorns. Something along those lines. I like having a reputation to live up to.

What I’m saying here is that women and men have very different ideas of what we do when we aren’t trying to impress the opposite sex. One of the most agonizing things we go through while dating in the 21st century is waiting for a god-forsaken text message reply. I wrote a blog post last summer about what to do when you’re guy isn’t texting you, but I never explored what women think men are actually doing when they’re not texting us.

Here’s what I’ve observed 5 single men doing in their spare time. The good news is that they do most of these shirtless. So at least there’s that:

-Drinking beer. So much so that they don’t have a hand to hold their phone, or possibly the motor skills.

-Playing music: Not only are they concentrating on playing the instrument but the music drowns out any noise from a phone.

-Shooting the shit. Men sit around and talk just like women do. Although it’s mostly just bullshit jokes, they are still committed to focusing on what their conversation is revolving around. Whether it’s about how to survive a zombie apocalypse or a story about a drunken night, men give their undivided attention to a spectrum of topics.

-Mowing, hoeing, working on a car, other man stuff. Working with their hands in general.

-Holding stuff. This is self-explanatory and can range from a multitude of objects – such as sticks, cigarettes, darts, and even food.

Generally speaking, these boys are focused on their lives first. Their priorities lie within what’s right in front of them at this moment. So if you want a guy to spend time thinking about you, don’t send a witty text that references Anchorman man ever so subtly. Just invite your damn self over to enjoy the fun.

“Sometimes I wonder if men and women really suit each other. Perhaps they should live next door and just visit now and then.” —Katharine Hepburn

Happy Monday y’all!

Good Ole Country Boys

Dating

I may be from Texas but there isn’t ain’t anything country about this girl. As Carrie Bradshaw says, “Im whatcha call a bonafide city girl.”

But I’m seeing a wholeheartedly country boy.

But the thing is he’s not typical I guess. Sort of. Well he likes to read and listen to rock music (we met at a rock show, Hanna Barbarians, check em out they’re great). But he loves being outside. He calls me darlin. He drinks Miller High Life and thinks my craft beer is over priced and pretentious. Which lets be real, admittedly it may be a tad indulgent. He’s a welder. He welds for a living because he loves working with his hands. His hair is long because he doesn’t want to get haircuts. He drives a beat up truck. He has that southern drawl that everyone in Europe expects me to have.

Oh and he’s a ginger. I should mention that too.

But the ultimate thing that I’m attracted to him is his authenticity. It’s refreshing to meet someone who is just as honest about who they are and what they like as me. It’s not something I’m used to.

There’s nothing off limits with us. We talk freely and openly. It’s always goofy, sarcastic, playful, and honest. I smile a lot. But I laugh even more.

About as country as I get.

The most surprising thing about him though is how he’s challenging my idea of what life is supposed to look like. When I look at him and his life I see another road I’d never even knew existed in this map of life.

When I went to Italy I was challenged to see a vast array of options in the European landscape in order to escape the stress of my eventual American life. I saw how I could relax, enjoy a walk, drink coffee, all while being constantly inspired by the beauty and history of Europe.

With him I see this American life I haven’t ever truly thought possible. But here he is, a living embodiment of it. He lives in a farmhouse outside of Fort Worth with 4 other awesome dudes. They play music together (using a guitar, harmonica, and banjo) or play catch outside in the sun. They all work hard every day. They are all so blissfully content and maintain such a low level of stress I can’t help but remain at ease in their presence. I catch myself wondering how much happier a life I would lead if I didn’t go into the high-stress world of advertising, with a world of deadlines and demanding clients looming over my head. I wonder what it would be like to not live in a bustling city with nameless faces and negative energy swirling around me. I catch myself wondering so many things I’ve never considered that I have to take a step back and just breathe and enjoy the country air.

Added bonus? He’s just about the damnedest best kisser this side of the Mississippi.

*Not an accurate representation

Tolerance of the Temporary

Dating, Inspiration, Personal

As a religion minor, I get the great pleasure this semester to learn about Buddhism. I think what may have piqued my interest is the image of the Buddha as a fat, bald, and happily barefooted icon, which is a complete contrast to the bearded, long-haired, thin, sandaled and somber Jesus Christ I grew up with. Of course I hope it’s not as simple as that though.

Either way I’m really getting into the course and in the process of applying some of the teachings to my life. The main ideal the Buddha encouraged humans to strive for was a balanced life. He was a born as prince, given everything he would every need in life and then was exposed to disease, old age, and death. He then left that life to live as an ascetic (wanderer of religious truths) where he starved himself, practiced intense yoga to achieve meditative trance states, and basically was a baller at life. But these two extremes didn’t bring him any pleasure and he came live The Middle Path, in which he balanced the extremity of his two lives.

Then he came to realize the 4 Noble Truths which go as follows: The disease is suffering, the cause of the disease is desire, the cure is nirvana, and the path to nirvana is the 8 Fold Path which includes “right truths” such as morality, livelihood, and meditation to achieve mindful awareness, and compassion.

Still with me? Great.

Well the cause of all suffering is our desire for permanence. Buddha taught that the inevitability of life is death. Attachment to pleasures or pain causes suffering, because we are attempting to cling to the conditional things, like the security of permanence, but that everything is constantly going to change, regardless of our attachment or desire, time continues onward. We will never be constantly in a state of pleasure or pain, every emotion is temporary. True happiness comes from the ability to get beyond temporary happiness to a sense of freedom, tranquility, and internal serenity.

I’ve been meditating on these concepts with the help of incense, this radio station, and the insatiable desire to understand this concept of balance. So I pondered, contemplated, speculated, and mused over these teachings. When I finished I had a sense of clarity, an insight into how this affects my life.

I’m emotional. I feel the extreme joy in life’s moments, but I’m also insanely affected by the perception of others and the stress that creates in my life. I’ve come to accept the temporary nature of a thought – negative or positive – but I want to choose to feel more moderately and balanced with a tendency toward happiness. I want to allow my feelings to move through my in a fluid motion of mild detachment, ultimately knowing they cannot affect who I am.

I was recently put to the test when I was hit hard by a new crush. I was so excited about the potential in this new guy, his intelligence and wit were awe-inspiring and challenged me to think critically during our conversations. Oh and did I mentioned he had the chiseled body of The David? Which is ironic because we talked about Michelangelo’s famed statue.

But seriously, how do I get this lucky sometimes?

Ahem, back to my point. I was so incredibly excited at the idea of someone who could actually keep up, if not top me, so I let that excitement get the best of me. Against my better judgement I tipped the scale in the favor of an attachment to the idea of perfection that could possibly come from this individual.

Only to get stood up. Yes. Stood the fuck up for our third date.

As you can imagine, infuriating doesn’t even begin to describe my feelings. Outraged, vengeful, and murderous are some of the emotions that coursed through my veins along with disappointment and embarrassment. I had allowed my emotions to overwhelm me in the beginning and in the end they once again bested me.

So this morning I woke up. Did some yoga, drank my coffee, and realized that my life is going on, regardless, because that’s the only way that time moves – forward. This miniscule person has no effect on my personal well-being.

I am the captain of my soul, the sole author of my story, and the only owner of my sense of self.

And for that, I am grateful to that lying bastard. (I’m still working on the compassionate nature the Buddha also encourages. Baby steps.)

In a Relationship with Myself

Dating, Personal

Time for the utterly shocking news that I am once again single. If that is in fact shocking to you, read further for clarity.

I thought I was ready for a new relationship. I truly thought that after 5 blissful months of bar hopping, single girl swag, and celebrating my fabulous self that I was at a place in my life where I would be ready to commit to someone else and accept their commitment to me.

Wrong. Wrong. Wrong.

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I was excaping myself through my friends and my short-lived crushes. Numbing myself from actually exploring who I am with internships and shots of tequila after work. I wasn’t growing, I was just adjusting. Right when I was at the peak and beginning to accept myself while learning to embrace who I actually am without someone else molding me, I met The Bartender. Then poof. I was right back where I started. Spending time with him instead of working on myself. My thoughts and concerns centered around him and his feelings instead of my own. My rickety self-esteem collasped on me, enduring insufferable blow after blow. Yet I accepted this because I was happy with him.

What I realize now though is that I was unhappy with myself and I wanted to be with someone who found joy through me because that gave me purpose.

Once I came to this conclusion I had no other choice but to conclude my relationship with The Bartender. I hated having to hurt someone again using the same rhetoric of finding myself and still being unable to reconcile with them that it wasn’t their fault but my own.

But onward and upward. It’s a new year and I finally understand that in order to become who I’m meant to be, I need to be on my own and face myself for the first time, without the hope that another man is going to come and rescue me from…well…me.

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Just for the sake of the new year, here’s my resolutions if you’re interested. Hopefully the more people that read them, the more of a reality they will actually become:

1. Treat others how you want to be treated.

2. Don’t let others define your happiness.

3. Start believing that everything will work out and stop stressing about what could happen.

4. Have the courage to trust myself and be confident in myself. Commit to actions that push me forward, instead of holding me back.

5. Be happy and healthy.

And lose weight. But everyone says that.

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