I've been on this earth for close to three decades now, and while that does not certify me as a wise old sage by any stretch of the imagination I do think it warrants me to voice my opinions on certain things based on my life experiences. Also this is my Blogazine so I will say what I damned well please.
(See what I did there? Already embracing this #nofucksgiven thing.) Plus, at almost 30 you stop worrying about people pleasing and realize that focusing on everyone but yourself is a huge expenditure in energy. Ain’t nobody got time for that.
Here’s the thing – when we are younger we want to make sure that we are liked. We bend over backwards to say the right things, laugh at the right jokes, shut up at the right moments and act as if we are not bothered when we truly (and often rightly) are.
But with the finite about of time we have on this earth, why should we be spending it placating others? Shouldn’t we be spending it doing what WE want to do with the people we WANT to do it with? Shouldn’t we stand up for ourselves and others when it’s needed and call out bullshit when we see it?
I’m not calling for a crazy, emotionally anarchistic free-for-all or giving anyone (including myself) a free ticket to pass go, collect 200€, and be a raging douchebag. I am saying that we often second guess ourselves way too much, hold onto relationships out of social politeness as to not make things awkward, bite our tongues so people don’t think we are sassy, or feel bad for an eternity and a half when we slip up and act snappy.
Well guess what? We are human. And sometimes we are just having a bad day and acting like a bitch can be part of that package. Now I’m not saying you should be blindly unapologetic on those days, but I’m kind of telling you to be blindly unapologetic on those days. Because we all get like that sometimes. It’s a part of the human condition and we should allow ourselves to have bad moods and not beat ourselves up about it.
The catch is that when we are in bitch mode anyone is free to call us on our bullshit as well, and we should acknowledge it without getting our panties in a twist. After all, you have to be willing to receive it if you are doing to dish it – and if you are receiving unnecessary bullshit from someone else I am giving you permission to call them on it.
So what if some random man at Starbucks thinks you’re a bitch cos you just broke up with your boyfriend, buried your dead cat, and got evicted and just don’t have the patience to deal with his lollygagging way of ordering a single frappuccino for 10 minutes? It’s 7am and this drink only comes in three sizes, for fuckssake!
Now let’s get a little bit personal here: Working in social media has made me hyper aware of how people view me. Not so much online (although there too) – rather when I meet people IRL at events or otherwise. It always makes me wonder how much pressure famous people and celebrities are under to give all the fucks in the world, just to ensure that no one wrongly accuses them of being a terrible person in every tabloid across the country.
But the other part of this argument is that not everyone is going to like you – so you should stop trying so hard and start using that energy on more enriching endeavors, like binge watching Skins on Netflix for the umpteenth time. Even if you are kind, fair and level headed, some people are just not going to be that into you. And why should you try to force it? If the roles were reversed and someone you did not get on with was trying desperately hard to be your #bffz, I’m sure you would find it uncomfortable, too. Don’t be that guy. It’s more stress than it’s worth and it always leads to disappointment and questioning your own self worth – something you definitely should not do because there are people out there who will like you just the way you are, and who you will like just they way they are, too.
Yesterday I had to deal with someone’s bullshit on the phone and after five minutes of trying to make it work, I thought to myself ‘fuck it’. Life is too short for this BS. So I kindly (or not so kindly) told her I don’t want to work with someone so rude and disrespectful and abruptly ended the call. Phone drop! Except not really cos I love my iPhone as if it were my first born.
As I said, this isn’t some article telling you that the #sorrynotsorry policy should be used indiscriminately as there are times and situations where we do need to bite our tongues or respond in a humble fashion regardless of whether it’s “fair” or not in our eyes. But remember – snapping at the lady on the train who won’t stop chewing her gum at the level of 600 decibels, or telling the man talking loudly about his close-minded views on immigration and homosexuality to kindly fuck off, is oftentimes a totally legit course of action.
Embrace your inner bitch in these moments and stand proud. Because mama didn’t raise no fool. Or no pushover either.
Photography: Rae (self portraits)