Science Communication, A.K.A. I’m Starting To Feel Like Doing Something Somewhat Unselfish With My Life For The First Time Ever And It Feels Somewhat Not Horrid (But I’m Still A Self-Serving Jerk For The Most Part)

This year, I have been becoming more and more preoccupied with the idea of taking science communication as a separate postgrad qualification after my geology MSc. I hated science at school, as it was never presented to me in a way that interested me – and so I slipped quietly through the years believing that science was just “not my thing”. The thing is, science is EVERYBODY’S thing, in some form or other. Science is the detailed exploration of the very foundation upon which every aspect of our existence operates, and there is definitely bound to be an area of science that excites you on some level, whether you realise it right now or not.

Something that heavily frustrates me are the limited ways in which science is being presented to the masses. There are scholarly journal reports which, although factual and highly important, are inaccessible intellectually for 95% of people, as the understanding of these usually requires experience in the specific field of the journal, or lengthy side-reading. Then there are the well-written science articles and blogs which are not nearly well-known enough, due to lack of exposure. Then you have your immensely popular sites such as “I Fucking Love Science”, which has many Facebook followers (showing that people are on some level trying to enjoy science), yet often offers clickbaity headlines and misleading statements (and by the way, if the title is presented in question format, the answer is almost always no, so stop getting your hopes up about pyramids on Mars).
Sure, these borderline pseudoscience articles offer links to follow, which are usually firstly links to other “news” sites, and if you follow the links back far enough you can usually arrive at a legit science report, which often does not state anything nearly as sensational as what the front end “science news site” is claiming. The problem with this is that the majority will not play “follow the hyperlinks”, and will just take the first article as fact (because hey, the news wouldn’t lie, right? It’s a proper website! I can’t wait to tell my friends all about the amazing new discovery of the “new Earth” that is definitely the same as us in every way).

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The thing is, people don’t go sifting through all the garbage in the internet to correctly inform themselves. They simply don’t have time – and why should they? They aren’t scientists or the Information Police, they are regular people, with lives going on and relationship problems and work deadlines and kids to deal with and all sorts of pressing bullshit that doesn’t afford them time to read three hours of articles to ascertain whether the shit that I Fucking Love Science is feeding them is actually legit.
So why aren’t we, as a society, reporting science more accurately? I mean, I get it – clickbait headlines serve to get people to visit your website. There are so many dollars to be made from this that people who aren’t really science journalists can be easily persuaded to start shoddily writing about science for a crust. It’s just sad that it’s being done under that guise of “loving science”. The thing is though, science is REALLY FUCKING EXCITING in its own right. You don’t NEED to make bullshit stretches of the truth to captivate and inform people. Look at Carl Sagan, arguably the most effective science communicator of all time – nary a sensationalist thing would cross his lips, yet he could bring to life a picture of the physical world at infinite scale in both directions, giving you a sense of wonder whilst pounding you balls-deep with scientific fact. That torch was passed forward to Neil DeGrasse Tyson, who not only upheld Sagan’s incredible vision, but brought it to the new generation in a spectacular way (and with much better CGI).

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What a pair of heroes! (art by Matt McManis)

Science communication is first and foremost, a middle-man role. It’s the task of undertaking the grunt work of reading ALL of the available facts and opinions, understanding them properly and then presenting them to the public in a way that excites and interests, without resorting to misleading or misinformation (a.k.a. bad scientific conduct).

All is not lost, there are many people out there doing this very thing and doing a great job of it – Ethan at http://scienceblogs.com/startswithabang/, Ed Young at http://phenomena.nationalgeographic.com/blog/not-exactly-rocket-science/ and Tim Urban at www.waitbutwhy.com, to name a few. It’s still an overwhelmingly male-dominated field – not because it’s an inherently sexist field in and of itself, but more because those of us reaching the age of career journalism, and those before us, still grew up in a society which on some level discouraged little girls from pursuing maths and science. I’m hoping I’m correct in considering my generation to be the last gasp of these attitudes, however there are bound to be some of us that are still blind to it and will continue instilling subtle gender roles into their kids. In general, sexism in science is beginning to taper off and hopefully will be gone within a couple of generations – Rome wasn’t built in a day, and all that idiomatic shit.

I’ve been growing more and more alarmed at the state of the world and from my perspective, the biggest underlying issue facing us today is a lack of knowledge. In a world oversaturated with the loudest voices and the most well-paid agendas, we are losing our ability as individuals to easily identify the truth on the most important matters. Although the internet is an incredible thing, it has made it so easy for the facts to become overshadowed or hidden, giving voice to anybody who wants their voice heard. Given this, how is the average person supposed to understand the important issues without doing a whole fuckload of additional reading? Ain’t nobody got time for that. So what happens when someone is overloaded with too many conflicting pieces of information or too much scientific jargon? They shut it off and place it in the “too hard/don’t care” box. And there are simply too many important issues facing our species today to be placing shit in the “too hard/don’t care” box.

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So, what I want is to be a strong part of the solution – to be the change I want to see in the world, and many other similar overused motivational phrases. I love to write, I love the truth, I love objectivity, I love entertaining people, I love edutainment. I’d love to shift my writing from glib inane thoughts about being a boring white woman with insecurities and whatnot, to earnestly readable pieces of scientific interest. I want to make someone feel the same way that watching Cosmos made me feel as a jaded 28 year old woman, and to spark determination in people to take issues like climate change seriously. I want to contribute to shutting down the confusion about critical topics created by self-interested organisations who have desperately greedy agendas that rely on the public being shielded from the truth.
I want to help, even if it’s just one person who reads.

Love, Chelle xoxoxoxoxooxoxoxoxox

Priorities, Which I Started Thinking About During A Really Long Tangential Explanation of Why I Don’t Watch The Kardashians.

The other day someone asked me why I don’t like Keeping Up With The Kardashians, and while I can’t in good conscience enjoy a show that negatively impacts humanity more than it positively impacts us, I realised that saying this just makes me sound like an elitist dickhead – especially to people that love the show and would take it as a direct affront to themselves. So I thought about it further, and decided to write out a logic-based reason why I don’t like this show – one which people cannot logically derive offense from.

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How could the show be funnier than this?

The Kardashians may be totally decent and lovely people, and that’s awesome. It’s also redundant, because we will never know the real them due to the fact that they are all carefully constructed personalities in one big old brand. My issue with the show is not a beef with any particular person. What I see is the sum of its parts – including the consequences of its existence in a world already oversaturated with materialism, judgmental attitudes, capitalism, greed, jealousy and low self-esteem.
If there was a show about Elon Musk swanning around the house with his family and talking all sorts of shit about dick, I would definitely watch it – because that’s a person I respect the shit out of. But that would also be a paradox because Elon Musk devotes all of his available resources – time, money and mentality – to continually trying to make the world a better place with concrete plans and products, and his involvement in a TV show about himself doing mundane things would be so far beneath his character that if it did happen, he would probably no longer be someone I respect. He is so engrossed in the work that he is trying to achieve, that he was pretty unenthusiastic that a recent biography was being written about him – he’s simply more concerned with getting people to understand what his companies really do and why it is important for mankind. He could not give a fuck about social things like branding and self-image (he hates the idea of advertising and abhors sales tactics so much that he refuses to sell Tesla cars in dealerships).

Getting back to the Kardashians ….
Priorities: everyone’s are different and that is totally okay. Maybe you don’t give a shit about anything beyond what you do in your immediate day, and the highlight of that day might be watching Keeping Up With The Kardashians. I get it; life totally sucks for a lot of people a lot of the time and we all need to do whatever we can to hang in there, so I’m not going to lambaste anybody for deriving pleasure from this show. The thing is, nothing about watching these Kardashians designing waist trainers and taking selfies aligns with any of my desires and priorities, which means that if I have a choice to watch it or not, why would I choose to do something that not only doesn’t serve my desires and priorities, but actively takes time away from the things that do? That’s it – that’s my reason. Nothing against the show, and nothing against those who watch it. I wish that more people could be cool with everyone having different priorities and stop trying to casually, jokingly, (but also why do you fucking persist with this) pressure people into sinking bulk time into a TV show. If I sat down and watched every TV show that someone raved at me about how amazing and special and different it is, I would be finished school before I was done with watching TV. Guess what; it’s 2016. Almost all TV shows are really good. Here’s one way you can be a better person; stop trying to force other people to watch your special show.

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Unless it’s Cosmos.

The fascinating thing about priorities though, is that they are like opinions – vastly different depending upon who you are speaking to. I’m not a vegan – I buy and consume animal products. That makes me a questionable person in the eyes of the more militant animal rights activists, but then on the flipside, they maybe don’t donate regularly to cancer research, or to Astronomers Without Borders, or any of the stuff that I’m passionate about. I do white collar volunteer work cataloging Maori artefacts in a museum, for fuck’s sake. That’s not helping anybody get a hot meal, or lowering global pollution levels, or saving any species. But Maori cultural preservation is a thing that is important to me (because historically speaking, most of the world fails in the treatment of, and importance placed upon, indigenous cultures), therefore that is where I prefer to direct my time.
And all of this is a good thing. Because if we all had the same priorities, then only some of the stuff in this world would be taken care of. Wouldn’t that be a fucked up situation? Cancer cured, but runaway climate change scheduled to kill us all within a few hundred years. Veganism adopted across the board, but all women’s shelters closed globally due to lack of funding and volunteers.
The key thing is that as long as everyone cares about something enough to make a decent effort to help that one cause, and can do their best to make smaller changes to other areas that might be on their radar (like buying one of those $5 KeepCups for your coffee), then on the whole, we are tackling most things across the board. That’s the whole thing. So, nobody’s priorities are more important than anyone else’s, what matters is how much conviction you have for your personal desires and concerns, and whether that conviction is enough for you to live a life that aligns with the core of who you are, and what you want. Pretty much like the Elon Musks of this world.

Priorities can, however, lead us into all sorts of places that we may never have intended on being. Following your priorities can be a slippery slope, so it’s really important to have a really good understanding of the things you want and the things you do. I feel like there is a high possibility that if humans colonise other planets in the future, the consensus might (should) be that religion is an Earthly construct for people who are unable to adapt to a more scientific way of thinking and is better left here, much like walking out of a playground to catch the bus, letting the infants squabble in their sandbox. Who wants to reach an age of science where we colonise a planet only to be followed to it by stubborn people who insist that their fictional religion should dictate the new way of life and its new laws? That’s archaic as fuck and it needs to stop. Faith is a lovely personal choice and can help some people immensely; organised religion is just destructive, limiting, and foolish. So if your top priority is religion, you need to have such conviction in that religion that you will happily stay on Earth with yo brethren in order to keep it, while the rest of humanity ventures forth into a new age of enlightenment, free from bullshit religious-driven politics and pettiness. By the way, I’m not foolish enough to state that there is no possibility of a higher force acting upon us, it’s just that you have to be missing a lot of critical thinking skills to believe blindly in a current man-made religion.
Welp, that was a hell of a tangent.

Anyway, back to priorities. Priorities lead us to places. My priorities are scientific, therefore someday I may end up helping to terraform Mars. Your priorities may be more Kardashian-esque, so you may end up with incredible hair and makeup skills and a sex tape. Your priorities are no more or less important than mine are, as long as it’s not something either of us wind up regretting on our deathbeds. The closer you align your priorities with who you are at your core and what you truly desire, the more you are going to love your life. Here are some combinations of priority and desire, and how they can fuck with us.

Priorities + Your innermost desires = A life of general contentedness and purpose.
This is the deal with people that seem to always be in the right place at the right time, people that are generally fulfilled, happy, stress-free and not obsessed with what others think of them. This is where I’m striving to be, which is a pretty stupid thing to say because this state is something that will only happen as a byproduct of acting in accordance with your true desires. You can’t strive to “be” here anymore than you can strive to be smart by reading one book. On a side note, one could argue that this is how psychopaths can remain so full of happiness and purpose while executing the stuff that most people consider dastardly and inhumane – because they actually are working from a place where they prioritise their innermost desires. That oughta give a few people nightmares tonight.
Priorities + No innermost desires = A “busy” life that leaves you feeling unfulfilled.
This is probably best shown by the “workaholic” stereotype, someone who would just work and work and work, miss out on their kids growing up, and all for what? A few extra thousand in the bank that you can never spend because you’re constantly working? On that note, this state can lead to many forms of “excessive” behaviour, ie. substance abuse, overexercising, overworking, fastidious cleaning, etc. Because when you are just “doing stuff” when your heart’s not in it, there’s never much satisfaction.
No priorities + Your innermost desires = A hedonistic life of wistful dreaming, followed by regrets.
This is a worrisome combination because the act of simply dreaming about stuff we want is usually enough to give us the instant dopamine/gratification we are after – and so it can go unchecked for a very long time. I know this, because this is how I spent literally all of my twenties, making bulk plans that I never followed through on, dreaming about all the cool shit I wanted out of life but never actually getting anything done. It definitely sucks to lose so much time to being “that guy”.
No priorities + No innermost desires = A life of empty hedonism, possibly with a good side of substance addiction
This is worrying, but at least you maybe blissfully unaware of this while it’s all happening, and you may even die in a happy stupor, knowing that you enjoyed your life. I feel like it would be an almost ecstatic experience to pinpoint your true desires and priorities after being in this state. It’s also probably the state where people are most vulnerable to religion and cults.

Basically, my recommendation is to pinpoint your innermost desire(s) and make your priorities feed into that. The pinpointing of desires is the hardest part (and not everybody even gets there), because we live in a very loud world where you can’t always be sure whether your desires are the things you truly want, or whether they are false desires that lead to social approval. Self-awareness is the hardest part, and maybe this is why people go off into the wilderness to “find themselves”, to quiet the obnoxious voices and opinions of the wider community. But what would I know? I’m just a regular jackoff that will probably never figure it out either!
Oh no … I have crazy-ranted my way through a blog that could easily be summed up in one motivational poster with the catchphrase “Happiness is knowing you you are”. That’s pretty embarrassing, but I’m still publishing this anyway because I can’t in good conscience throw away a 2000 word post, especially when that time should have been used to complete an assignment.
If you’re confused, that’s ok – this wasn’t a very well-written post and you’re probably quite disappointed that you didn’t get the vitriolic Kardashian rant you were so eagerly coveting. I’m terribly sorry my friend.

Love, Chelle xoxooxoxoxoxooxxo

 

 

 

 

 

 

ONE MONTH LATER – I’M EVEN FURTHER FROM BEING JOSEPH GORDON-LEVITT NOW THAN I WAS WHEN I STOPPED DRINKING.

Firstly, this has probably been the longest I have ever actually stuck to any habit that is supposedly good for me, so I guess I should feel some kind of smug pride at that – but oddly enough, I don’t.
Here’s what has happened in the last month: Nothing.
Like, literally fucking nothing. I have become a boring shell of my former fun self and have ceased almost all social contact, preferring to take extra shifts at work, tidy my room, go for walks, make future home decor vision boards (yes really, kill me please), revisit my seven year plan, and study for a paper that I’m not even taking until summer school next year. I have had zero sex. Fuck my life.
My brother had his gang around to watch the rugby the other weekend and I ended up watching it with them all – it was a giant fun-fest of drinking and happiness and I couldn’t be more internally pissed off that I couldn’t partake of the ale. It was an excruciating 80 minutes of inner struggle and hatred as I watched them all get progressively drunker and more excitable. I clammed up and kept my eyes fixed upon the screen, awkwardly only speaking when specifically asked a question, probably leading people to think I had acquired some sort of PTSD and had come home to be put out to pasture, rather than being here to study. Someone very kindly passed 1 x marijuana my way at some point, which mercifully got me through the second half.
I haven’t given up drugs, by the way. They are just far more expensive and crappy here so I assumed they weren’t going to be anywhere near as much of a problem for me as alcohol. I also vowed not to buy any more weed, in future only allowing myself a social hoot of whatever is proffered at any given time.
I feel like such a martyr.
On the health front, I had a constant headache for almost two weeks, combined with some hot flushes and shakes, but I’m told that will happen when you’re giving your favourite things up cold turkey. After that shit cleared off though, I felt … well … not much different, to be honest. My body had gotten pretty used to functioning hungover so I had kind of stopped getting perceivable hangovers altogether sometime in the mid 00s. My skin seems a little clearer, and I lost around 10kg this past month – which is good, because I am a fat bumbling idiot and I’d like to be just a bumbling idiot without the fat. I hope that continues and I also hope that I develop some sort of transfer addiction to exercise or something else that will make me thin (unlikely though, because fuck you genetics and Murphy’s Law).

My mind has been a whole bunch of dildoes. Being sober means that my mind is now racing constantly with all of the lame things that I usually managed to obliterate with drinking, so I’m forcibly reminded constantly of all the little things I can’t stand about myself and how I am still messed up over stupid stuff that happened ages ago, and how anxious I am about going back to uni this semester as an old-as-fuck 31 year old who may or may not be able to keep up with her peers intellectually, especially because I have to re-learn three years of forgotten high school maths in a couple of months just to be able to pass a maths paper…. and other such worrying thoughts. My concentration/focus and attention span are both highly impaired (or were possibly never that good to begin with, although I don’t remember all the way back that far). But such is life and literally everyone has a whole lot of crap to deal with at all times so I’m no worse off than anybody else, to be fair.

If it weren’t for the weight loss, I’d be solely unimpressed with this whole bullshit sobriety thing. I’m bored and I’m boring and I definitely wouldn’t want to be my friend right now. Thankfully the majority of my mates are all in the North Island and Australia, because it’d be pretty boring for them to have to hang out with me in this state. I really hate it when people adopt some sort of new regime and wax lyrical about how it changed them and how they are much better people now, so I’m not going to lie to you guys. Sobriety sucks and it should only ever be done as a last resort when you have a giant drinking problem. Don’t ever do this shit by choice or because you think it will make you some sort of better, cleaner, person. Just don’t. Drink literally everything you can get your hands on and pillage your lithe little livers – and then have another one for me. I wish I was you.

Love, Chelle xoxoxoxo

Drunk Me Is The Poor Man’s Joseph Gordon-Levitt.

Today I decided that I was going to give up drinking – for real (this is not a drill).

Anyone who knows me, the eternal party girl, will be aware that this is going to be a pretty massive change of pace for me. Although I’ve tried to cut down a few times in the past, placing certain limitations on myself (“never at home alone/only once a week/only classy booze that doesn’t come in a cardboard box”), I’ve failed spectacularly every time. Why? Because I have zero willpower and poor self-negotiation skills – so I have to do it cold turkey, or it’s just not going to happen at all. Drinking is a really difficult thing for me to give up, considering I am a product of Dunedin and thus grew up with a comfortable acclimatisation to the binge-drinking normality of teen and student life here. And as a party-loving adult who is child-free, I have never really had a good enough reason to be responsible or stop drinking – not to mention it’s fun as fuck, and I don’t have a problem!

Do I?

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Well, yeah actually – I totally do. Over the last couple of years I have been drinking by myself at home all the time because “why not?” – and frankly, “why not?” isn’t a good enough reason to drink (or do many things, for that matter). I started with the notion that I could get some decent artwork done after a few drinks, which always resulted in me being completely hammered, whilst my easel sat in the corner collecting dust. Alcohol lends me no productivity or creative motivation whatsoever, and it’s immature and futile to keep pretending it does. I can’t even fool myself into thinking that alcohol is a way to unwind or relax at the end of a stressful or busy day, because I am hands-down the least stressed and/or busy person that I know.

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You might remember me from such movies as “Today We Kill, Tomorrow We Die” and “Gladys The Groovy Mule.”

My sister and I recently started using the MyFitnessPal app, and it’s opened my eyes to exactly how much of my energy consumption is solely alcohol, or junk food consumed due to drinking. On days that I don’t drink, I struggle to even eat two thirds of my daily energy needs. On days that I drink, however, the alcohol puts me over by almost double, and on days after drinking I eat nothing but junk – no wonder my weight shot up when I started flatting and drinking beer by the crate! Drinking also saps all motivation or energy to do other things, so many past endeavours have ended up on the backburner while I continued to prioritise getting fucked up. These days however, I have lofty concrete goals that I want to achieve, and being drunk all the time is not going to make those things happen – especially considering they are of the academic and fitness variety. Simply put; I can no longer coast through life being drunk all the time when the expectations I am placing on myself are far more complex than “shower, get dressed and get to your easy job selling dildos”.

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(…. as satisfying as that was).

Thankfully I’ve always been a fairly happy drunk, so my alcohol consumption hasn’t resulted in any estrangement of friends or family, but I’m sure that it hasn’t done me any favours, either – I routinely arrive at family events already pissed, and I’m pretty sure nobody expects much better from me after so many years of being like this. I’ve also come to the realisation that I lack self confidence so badly, that in order to go on dates with dudes, I have to be almost legless before I even meet up with them (let alone doing anything else with them). How is that any way to be a human? The lame truth is that I have way more stuff to deal with before I can really be with anybody, and continuing to drink is not going to solve those issues for me. I guess the major thing that worries me is that without alcohol, I’ll have to actually be my sober self all the time, which may result in withdrawing from social situations due to a fear that people won’t like me, and (sob) never getting laid again.

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Much like the wearer of this ensemble, who is almost definitely an “up the bum no babies, love” type operator.

As I started writing this blog post, I did a shout-out on Facebook asking others who have ever given up drinking to give me their insights on why and how they did it, and suddenly all sorts of cray bitches came out of the woodwork – people I didn’t even know were sober! Sobriety (something that I had always assumed was reserved for only the cripplingly religious and the painstakingly boring) as it turns out, has become increasingly common in my peer group. Many of these people had decided to give up for health reasons, to improve fitness, or to just undo many years of increased alcohol tolerance. Due to the binge-drinking culture of the 90s-00s, we were all coming of age at a time where a bottle of Kristov vodka split between two fourteen year old girls was as commonplace as an expired condom in a boy racer’s wallet.
A number of mates have quit drinking for reasons similar to me – they realised that they were unable to stop at one drink, or hid behind being drunk, and decided that this probably meant they had a problem. Some had given up after seeing the adverse effects drinking was having on loved ones (ie turning them into total cunts), while others were trying to increase fertility/had gotten pregnant. But mainly, most of us just got sick of being the poor man’s version of ourselves, much like when Dante’s Peak just casually decided to cast Jeremy Foley in the Joseph Gordon-Levitt role, thinking we wouldn’t notice.
But we did notice.

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EVERYONE NOTICED.

Joseph Gordon-Levitt or not, I am overdue to sort my shit out – and what better place to do it than Dunedin, where the clubs are full of 17 year olds, the drugs are non-existent/awful quality sold at an astronomical mark-up, and the parties for 31 year olds are scarce? Henceforth, I can be found at the library, in my bedroom, or at the library, and in all cases, sober. If you see me, don’t offer me a drink. Cheers.

Love, Chelle xoxoxoxooxxoxo

How To Have A Happy Year

Now that we’re going into a new year, I figured I’d write a few wee insights into what I think can really help people feel happier in general. Whether you’re working on a career, happily being up to fuck-all, recovering from injury/illness, trying to take a gap year to relax, still trying to decide what you want out of life, or haven’t even thought about 2016 yet, hopefully you will find something in this list that resonates with you.

Try to stop getting all worked up over small things that literally will not matter in a week’s time.
You’re injecting yourself with cortisol by the second here. I get that in the late 00’s it was considered “cute” to be all quirky and neurotic, and everybody jumped on the “I’m so unique and OCD look how I straighten up my pencils all perfect” bandwagon, but seriously, try to chill out and live your life in a relaxed fashion. You only get one life, don’t spend it running around like a headless chicken – you don’t get brownie points or sympathy for being neurotic, you just lose bulk quality of life. I would recommend as far as to get therapy for this if you need to, because it’s important to learn how to relax on the daily.

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Don’t let stress give you a wedgie like Thurman here.

Think highly of others and of yourself.
Compliment others and yourself sincerely and often, and learn how to accept a compliment graciously. For example:
Albert: “Wow, Chelle if it weren’t for your incredibly complex ideas I wouldn’t have understood the fundamentals behind relativity at all, you truly are the most gifted mind of our time. And might I just add that your eyeliner wings are on point today?”
Chelle: “Cheers Albert, I really enjoy dissecting physics. And I’d be happy to show you my eyeliner trick any time you like!”

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And show him I did.

Leave guilt at the door at all times.
All you need to know is that you’re definitely not a bad person – so stop treating yourself like a villain. Just breathe and if it’s something you wish you’d done differently, strive to do it differently next time. If an apology needs to happen, do it sincerely, acknowledge what you did and why it was uncouth, and the other person (if it is fairly trivial and they are a decent person) should rise to the occasion and forgive you – because they know you’re sincere. If it was a really serious betrayal, then respect that this person probably cannot forgive what you did, and move on with your life. Be aware of how bad you felt and let that be your ammo to change your behaviour, but always look forward, never look back. YOU CANNOT CHANGE THE PAST; ONLY YOUR ACTIONS MOVING FORWARD. Feeling shit about the past is 1000000% useless and a giant waste of your life.

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For you are not he.

Spend more time thinking about your own choices and less time thinking about other people’s choices.
I cannot stress this enough. If you are unable to stop negatively judging other people, then this should probably be your TOP PRIORITY IN LIFE TO CHANGE. Because until you do, you will never love yourself and be able to truly enjoy life. Your insecurities and judgmental ways can eat you from the inside out. I’ve seen it happen. Also, everybody will probably think you’re a major cunt and won’t want to spend time with you if you keep that shit up.

Understand that NOBODY GIVES A SHIT WHAT YOU DO OR WHAT YOU LOOK LIKE.
People that get all worked up freaking out about whether they will be judged for their earrings or makeup or body or whatever, are still yet to understand that nobody gives a fuck about you because they are WAY more invested in themselves at all times. The sooner you can get this through your head, the sooner you will actually be able to relax, let go and LIVE YOUR LIFE EXACTLY AS YOU WANT TO, FREE FROM SOCIAL FEARS. And if someone is going to judge you on what you do/wear/look like, is that really the kind of person you want to be friends with anyway?

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AND HOW!

 

Spend less time with your face buried in social media
… and spend more time with your face buried in articles, books, art, pussy, face masks, food etc. Catching up on your friend’s photos of their South America trip because you are interested is one thing; spending all day refreshing the same boring newsfeed full of mindless junk is another thing entirely and will leave you feeling listless and dull. Trust me; I’ve been there and it’s boring as shit, not to mention a colossal waste of a day – time really flies by when you’re doing nothing at all on your phone, time that you can’t get back.

Have aspirations, but don’t beat yourself up along the way.
It’s good to have goals, as long as you don’t turn the odyssey into yet another opportunity to beat yourself up due to not having adhered perfectly to your desired routine. There is a thing that gets in the way sometimes and that is called life – we are not machines, we are humans that sometimes need a “mental health day” or a day spent in our pyjamas watching grisly true crime documentaries. Sometimes you’re going to skip that workout or miss that art class or fall behind on that reading material. So what? Evaluate why you missed it and make plans to avoid it happening again. Leave negative emotion at the door and celebrate that you’re still closer to your goal than you were last week. Tomorrow’s a new day to get back on track. Also don’t publicly beat yourself up about something that you deem “bad”, because a. it makes you an insufferable bore, and b. it will probably make others feel bad about themselves for various reasons.

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Like, y’know, whatever.

Spend more time doing what you WANT to be doing, and less time doing what you SHOULD be doing.
If you deem something as a “should”, it means you are probably not doing it for the right reasons anyway and you might want to re-evaluate those and cull the “shoulds” that don’t serve you.

Appreciate everything.
I know that 2013-2015 was all about the #gratitude and #blessed, but I honestly think that a very smart word to employ into your vernacular is APPRECIATE. Appreciate everything. The definition below explains why appreciation is a really good virtue to have – it transcends the wishy-washy feel-good of “blessed/gratitude” and focuses on absolute understanding and smart, sophisticated gratitude.

preciate

‘Preciate chu.

If you’re in a relationship, focus on being a great partner to the person you love.
Spend more purposeful time with them, have more sex, listen to them fully – not with your face in your phone. Try to do one thing together every day without distractions, like having a coffee first thing in the morning, or going for an evening swim. If they want to do something that you may not, then just suck it up and go do it with them and focus on the act of being with them, not on the actual activity. Because it’s the little differences that get highlighted when the relationship starts turning south. If you don’t nurture your relationships, they may never fully flower.

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Be a Kip.

Know that you can’t do it all/be it all/have it all at once, and be good with that.
Pick only a small few things to concentrate on at a time, because the minute you try to multi-task the most important stuff in life, is the minute it all goes out the window. Move onto the next stuff once you have fully mastered everything on your plate. Think of life like a buffet, create a small plate, because you can always go back for seconds when you’re ready. Overloading your plate is confusing and you’ll feel sick (that’s if you don’t drop the plate first).

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I hope 2016 is a wonderful year full of love, laughter, gains and relaxation, for all of us.
Love, Chelle xoxoxooxoxox