Personal Rules

Not too long ago there was a thread on Ask Reddit about personal rules you live by. I thought about it and I figured some of my own.

Honesty is a great policy

90-98% of what I say behind people’s backs I’ll say to their face. You need a margin of error for harsh truths that need a nice delivery or things that don’t need to be said. I think Bella is routinely a sanctimonious jerk but informing her thusly will solve nothing. That falls into the margin of error.

Own your mistakes

Your human and you will screw up. Admit it, own it, and learn from it. I had a boss tell me that she admired my ability to own my mistakes. Millennials have a negative reputation of thinking they know more than they do, not learning, and trying to pass the buck. It’s an ugly trend permeating our society and it needs to stop.

Don’t forgive people who aren’t sorry, don’t know what they did wrong, and only offer nonpologies.

I’ve been disappointed, let down, and throw away by some very self-centered people. I try not to hold grudges or keep score because that just grants folks real estate in my head they don’t deserve. However, I don’t forget how they acted and let their behavior shape our relationship in the future.

People who are ‘sorry you feel that way’ are only sorry you’re upset. They don’t care why or the fact that they had something to do with it. If people have better things to care about than my feelings, I’m better off putting my energy elsewhere.

Don’t make yourself crazier than you have to

This ties into picking fights that don’t need to happen or getting upset when you have no control. If WMATA is a hot mess, I give myself a second to be cross and then deal with it. Another example of this in recent life was Bella and Edward starting a fight with Bond about a word. Most people would shrug and move on with their day but those two decided that was a hill worth dying on.

Find what brings you joy and experience it

I love books, dogs, and running water. These are things that bring me joy, peace, and other good feelings. I read a lot, engage with as many dogs in my neighborhood that I can, and enjoy the times when I’m around water. I like relaxing with Boyfriend on our couch and mocking ridiculous reality TV. Rather than get peer pressured into going to an event I don’t want to do, I hold that time sacred.

Also figure out what isn’t bringing you joy and avoid it if you can. I’m not saying quit your job or avoid the dentist but trim the fat. I realized I wasn’t enjoying bar trivia with my friends and my ‘friends’ so I stopped going. I had a better night running to the library, listening to podcasts, and putting away laundry.

Accomplish at least 3 things per day

I came up with the 3 things rule to make sure I was adulting or being productive with my days. If I do the laundry, empty the dish drainer, and drop off a library donation, I’ve done 3 things. Sometimes it’s putting away the clothes on the drying rack, washing my hair, and cleaning my makeup brushes. Some days are better than others but clearing off various papers off the TV stand made the place look better so I’ll take it.


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