As Featured on News Cult: How to Deal with Flaky People

We’ve all had to deal with flaky people. And it’s no secret they’re the worst. They bail on plans, take three days to text you back, and jerk you around like you’re stances on important issues and they’re Hillary Clinton. They live by one principle, and one principle only: inconsideration. And thus, are the ultimate narcissists. But perhaps the saddest part of all of this is that we let them affect us. We’re at their beck and call—ready and willing to be flaked on and then come back for some more. And while I’m sure there’s some psychological phenomenon(-a?) that can be attributed to, rather than try to make sense of our masochistic tendencies, let’s just agree that we’ve had enough. Fuck the flakes. Here’s how you deal with them.

Flake on them right back

How do they like it? How’s it feel to be flaked on, huh? Actually they probably won’t care or notice, but as a matter of principle, we’ll treat them how they treat others. #flakeesturnedflakers

cut them out of your life

Snippity SNIP that dead weight. You have to go cold turkey. Otherwise, you’ll be forever caught in their web. Delete their number, destroy any and all evidence of their existence (yes, this applies to burning their house down), and refuse to engage if they contact you. Put yourself into witness protection if you have to. Join Scientology—I don’t care, just whatever it takes to get out from under the flaky hold.

TAKE A HIT OUT ON THEM

Just straight up have them murdered. This may seem drastic, but the world would be better off without them. So, you’re welcome, everybody.

hang out with non-flakes

I know, revolutionary—how about trying to populate your life with decent people instead of those who treat you like you’re disposable? I’ve heard there are a few not-completely-shitty humans out there, so go get ’em. *Hint: start with the Trader Joe’s cashiers (literally any of them—their excellence is unmatched).

distract yourself

If you’re finding it difficult not to get entangled with a flaky person, fill your schedule with a lot of other things so you’ll be left with no time, energy, or head space to focus on them. Take up water aerobics, join a motorcycle club, speed walk with your 94-year old neighbor, FaceTime relentlessly with your dog, pour yourself into your work (LOL…OL), get into a spirited debate with a Hillary supporter which just consists of you repeatedly asking them to justify the Iraq War and them repeatedly saying, “I don’t owe you an explanation,” make a unicorn costume because you’re FUCKING MAGICAL, volunteer to impart all of your inappropriate advice read to kids, mail glitter bombs to all of your enemies, use all of your sick days on a Golden Girls marathon… The possibilities are endless.

make friends with their friends

Become super close to their inner circle. Just to make a point—(“Even though you don’t seem to value me, other people do. In other words, flake on me and I will replace you, motherfucker.” #onlyBeyoncéisirreplaceable #actuallyapparentlyevensheisn’t #I’myourBeckywiththegoodhair,bitch #Infiltration101).

don’t even start with them

Although you’ve been known to make some pretty terrible decisions, your intuition is sometimes right. So if when you first meet someone, you sense that they’re flaky, don’t even begin a relationship with them, friendship or otherwise. There’s no point in starting something that’s going to eventually reveal itself to just be you spending hours waiting by the phone, unfulfilled, crying on the bathroom floor a whole lot of nothing. Save yourself the heartache. #NEXT

Featured on News Cult: http://newscult.com/deal-flaky-people/

As Featured on News Cult: How to Celebrate Father’s Day

I had to Google when Father’s Day is (sorry, Dad). But luckily I’m way ahead of the game and it’s not until June 19; (completely forgot to do a post about Mother’s Day… sorry, Mom). And when you have your shit remotely together for once, it’s worth commemorating. So here’s a list of ideas for how to celebrate, with plenty of time to plan/pull one of these out of your ass morning of.

1. Make a list of all the parenting mistakes your dad has made

And ways he’s failed you. Handwrite it for extra personal effect before you gift it to him.

2. Do a nostalgic activity

Growing up, I was daddy’s little boy, so when I quit soccer, I believe that was the most disappointing moment of my father’s life. So for me, this would be playing soccer with him/losing my breath after 2 minutes and disappointing him all over again.

3. Don’t express too much emotion

Things will just get weird if you do something like say “I love you,” so just keep a lid on it. No need for a hug—a pat on the back or sturdy handshake will do just fine. Perhaps even a chest bump, or barbaric grunt.

4. Go out to dinner

His treat.

5. Bring your significant other to meet him for the first time

Nothing says, “I love you, Dad,” like introducing your piece of shit boyfriend to him on a day that signifies family togetherness and appreciation. I find it helps if your guy doesn’t have a college degree or a job, can’t drink whiskey straight or engage in substantive debate about the morality of war, and puts on a lot of PDA.

6. Tell him you’re pregnant

And that soon enough your child will be celebrating Father’s Day! With whom, we don’t know yet, but we feel confident we can narrow it down to 3 candidates, +/-.

7. Offer to join him in an activity he likes

Like golf—all dads like golf, right? Join him for a spastic bout of swinging the club and taking chunks out of the ground, never hitting the ball game. Or buy him some nice cigars—that’s another dad thing, right? Offer to sit in the den with him and choke while sucking on the wrong end smoke one by the fire.

8. Ask him for money

Parents love when you do that! Nothing says “I appreciate you, Dad,” more than, “I need you to bankroll my lifestyle.”

9. Get him a dog

And then take on zero responsibility in caring for it.

10. Give him comments on his will

Ask him for a copy of it, redline and annotate that shit, and get it back to him for countersignature. #he’swelcome

11. Get into an explosive, hysterical argument

It’s not a family gathering without one, right?

12. Move back home

#Surprise!

 

 

 

 

 

 

If anything, he should be grateful, because someone is going to have to wipe his ass for him in his old age. #47isthenew74 #youmaythinkyou’reyoungandhealthy,butyouknowwhoelsethoughtthat? #StephenHawking

13. Make him a card

Nothing too flamboyant, lest you insult his masculinity. But maybe some neutral-toned cardstock with a navy blue or forest green accent, perhaps some plaid ribbon if you’re feeling courageous, and black or blue ink only.

14. Ask him to bail you out

“I used my one phone call on you! That’s how much you mean to me.”

Featured on News Cult: http://newscult.com/14-things-youre-dad-will-really-really-love-get-fathers-day/

As Featured on News Cult: How to Make the Most of Your Free Time

For most of us, there’s a pretty clear distinction when it comes to “free time”: it’s time we get to spend doing whatever we want, free of any obligations (especially work). If  you’re one of those fuckers who loves their job, then perhaps the line is a bit blurrier and free time less precious to you. But for the rest of us, it’s like coffee, or alcohol, or justice, or a green arrow on a left turn: there is never enough of it. Which is why you have to make the most of it. Here’s how.

Focus

Something we are terrible at. But if you make an intentional choice (yes, this is something a yoga teacher would say, and thus something we would normally mock mercilessly, but just bear with me) to make your free time just about free time, not about any obligations, you’ll get more out of it. Otherwise, what’s the point? If you’re going to watch a TV show you like, or get a massage, or go on vacation while also answering emails, calls and texts non-stop the whole time, you may as well just turn the TV off, skip the massage, and stay at the office. The ‘conscious effort’ methodology is great for us not just because it will help us truly enjoy our free time, but also because it’s a totally valid excuse to tell everyone to fuck off, which is our favorite thing. #allIwantforChristmasisforyoutofuckoff

Plan ahead

If you’re bad at carving out free time, plan ahead to use it. E.g. schedule a vacation a few months in advance, or buy tickets for a show you really want to see right when they go on sale, or promise a friend you’ll take that hike with them next weekend. While we are spectacular at cancelling plans, if we make them, at least that’s a bit more motivation to follow through on our free time-enjoyment efforts. Which brings me to…

Have skin in the game

If you set it up so that you have something to lose by not enjoying your free time, you’ll be more likely to take advantage of it. Like if you spend money on flights for a vacation, you’re unlikely to cancel them. Or if you know that you’ll have to pay for your massage after it’s over, you’ll make more of an attempt to really relax and benefit from it. This is sad of course, because it means we are motivated by money, but that’s what we get for building a capitalistic society. If I had it my way, we’d all still be trading: you give me a goat, I’ll give you some clay beads; you give me a smallpox blanket, I’ll give you your scalp on a fucking platter.

Be selfish

Allow yourself to look out for #1. I’m not saying be like most people and dwell in assholic narcissism, but just that you can enjoy the little things in life and still be a decent human. Remember, as a yoga teacher would also say and make us want to smack them in their fat mouth: in order to help and take care of others, you first have to care for yourself.  As Donna Meagle, our collective spirit animal, says, “treat yo’ self.”

Find something you like

I know, this is impossible. But maybe there’s something out there in the world you mildly, tepidly enjoy doing, which will be a good use of your free time. Like, for me, it’s crusading against insurance companies. All of them. Just tornadoing right the fuck through them. For you, it might be quilting, or walking your dog. For Hillary Clinton, it’s committing war crimes. Whatever ruins the most lives in the name of money and power floats your boat, right?

Remember no one is going to do it for you

I cannot reiterate enough that no👏one👏gives👏a👏shit👏a👏bout👏you👏. If the world had its way, you’d be its slave forever, never getting any free time. No one is going to ensure your life is enjoyable and that you relish your free time for you. It’s on you, boo. It’s like oxygen masks on planes—every man, woman and child for himself. #everyoneelsecanchokeanddie

Featured on News Cult: http://newscult.com/make-free-time/

 

As Featured on News Cult: Suggested Taglines for the “Real Housewives”

If it was my job to come up with the taglines The Real Housewives recite at the opening of each episode, here’s what I’d contribute.

•”I’m not anorexic, I’m just better than you.”

•”I don’t need to stay relevant, I never was.”

•”If you want a prenup, I don’t want you.”

•”Don’t get jealous, get Botox.”

•”People may think I’m dumb, and they’re right.”

•”I didn’t marry for money, I married for millions.”

•”You might recognize me from daytime TV, but I’m Rated-R.”

•”You’d be obsessed with me too if you had these calves.”

•”I’m single and ready to file bankruptcy.”

•”I thank God every day for white privilege.”

•”Third husband’s a charm!”

•”If Charlize Theron thinks it’s hard being pretty, she should see me.”

•”I’m not a princess, I’m just a self-important asshole.”

•”Money can’t buy me—it does.”

•”People think they know me, but this nut is tough to crack.”

•”Bad nose jobs are a girl’s best friend.”

•”This gold digger went to the School of Mines.”

•”If you think I’m a piece of work, you should see my boobs.”

•”I may have a horse-mouth, but that doesn’t mean I’ll spill my secrets.”

•”I don’t gossip—I’ll call you an ‘alcoholic whore’ straight to your face.”

•”Lip injections may be temporary, but chin implants are forever.”

•”You, too, can marry for money if you work hard enough.”

•”I may be a hot mess, but at least I’m hot. And you’re not.”

•”If you don’t constantly look alarmed, you’re not doing it right!”

•”How can I be shallow, if my pockets are so deep?”

•”People think my husband is controlling, but he’s just a sexist pig.”

•”Money isn’t everything, it’s the only thing.”

•”People try to put me in a box, but I’ll only go if it’s cubic zirconia-encrusted.”

•”Don’t cry because it’s over—you’ll get wrinkles!”

•”Your name doesn’t have to be Felicia for me to say ‘BYE.'”

Featured on News Cult: http://newscult.com/suggested-taglines-real-housewives/

As Featured on News Cult: How to Not Procrastinate

Umm…. I don’t know how to not procrastinate since I do it all the time. It’s weird—if I don’t feel pressure to meet a deadline, I don’t feel satisfied once I’ve done it. So procrastination is kind of the only way for me to feel a sense of accomplishment. And being able to use the time you spend putting something off on stuff you enjoy doing is nice too. Like, sure, I could work on my taxes piecemeal throughout the year, but I’d rather spend my time doing other things, so why not devote just a couple nights right before April 15 to devolving into psychosis, instead of the entire year?

But I guess I can see the point—if you don’t procrastinate, you might not actually devolve into psychosis. Yeah, you’ll have to dedicate smaller increments of your free time upfront to something, but in the end, you’ll save time and your sanity. So maybe it’s worth a shot. Here are some ideas for how to not procrastinate.

push the deadline up

Give yourself a tighter deadline than is actually necessary, so you’ll still feel the pressure that it takes to motivate you to get something done, but you’ll get it done early. This is essentially still procrastinating, but in, like, a meta way… Forced procrastination to avoid real procrastination. #reversepsychologizingourselvestothefinishline

Take yourself to the dark place

The place of utter despair and panic you go to when you’re scrambling to get something done. Force yourself to sit in that mental space for 20 minutes, which should be enough to scare you out of ever going there again. It’s easy to forget how terrible the procrastination-induced rush to get something done is when you’ve had time and space away to block it from your memory, but when you’re deep in the throes of it, it’s bad. Like, Amanda Bynes, bad. So if you can remind yourself of that, you’ll save yourself a lot of agony and bad body piercing decisions.

reward yourself

For not procrastinating. Because, like dogs, we will do something with enthusiasm and vigor if we get a treat for it. In other words, like Hillary Clinton, we can be bought. Vow to get a massage after you finish your big work presentation one whole day before it’s due (MIND.BLOWING!). Or tell yourself you can’t go get a cup of coffee until you respond to that email in a timely manner (don’t FUCK with our coffee). Or allow yourself one hour of Instagram-trolling for every task you successfully complete ahead of schedule. #whateverittakes

PACK YOUR SCHEDULE

So that it’s virtually impossible for you to procrastinate. If you do, your whole world will fall apart (I mean like what else is new but still). #nothinglikesettingyourselfupforfailure

make a schedule

I hate myself so much for saying this, but maybe (emphasis on MAYBE) it’s worth making a schedule so that you can plan how to feasibly get things done without waiting until the last minute? I’m not saying we all need to start using white boards with color-coordinated sticky note systems and become mini-van driving, pastel- and khaki-wearing, bowl-cut sporting freaks. But just like plot a course for yourself. We’re basically Magellan. Or Christopher Columbus. Minus the raping and pillaging. #notrapingandnotpillagingourselvestothefinishline

be realistic

If you know you’re going to procrastinate on something, don’t take it on in the first place. Yes, some things are unavoidable and require time management (another phrase that makes me want to vom), but you also can choose to pursue things or not (or, if you’re a millionaire, you just choose not to do the required things like taxes anyways. #1%doesn’tgiveaFUCK). And given our propensity for laziness and procrastination, it’s probably best to avoid committing to as many elective things as possible. Some may see this technique as defeatist, but I’m just being real. Like, are we going to actually read the books when we join a book club and be prepared to participate in the discussions? No. We’re just joining for the free food. So cut the book club and find your complimentary refreshments elsewhere, somewhere you’ll fit in with your dysfunction and lack of self-control. Like an AA meeting. #thoseareyourbrethren

Featured on News Cult: http://newscult.com/how-to-not-procrastinate/

As Featured on News Cult: Questions I Would Ask the “Real Housewives” If I Ever Had the Chance to Interview Them

You’d think the infinity “reunion specials” for each season of each Real Housewives franchise would be enough to answer any questions I have for them, but nope—I’ve got more. So here’s what I would ask the “Real Housewives” if I was ever graced with the chance to interview them.

1. Are you ever confronted with the utter meaninglessness of your existence and everything you hold dear?

2. Studies show you’ve singlehandedly kept the taffeta industry in business. Why?

Part b) Why?

3. Have you ever eaten bread?

Part b) And kept it down?

4. How many Chinese children did it take to bedazzle everything you own?

5. What’s up with your face?

6. How many homeless people have you hit & run with your Bentley?

A) At least 3

B) Approx 10

C) Def in the teens and Suge Knight’ed at least 4 of them too

7. Who will get to keep the offshore accounts when your marriage falls apart on national television—you or your husband?

8. Do you ever worry that your children will take after you?

9. How much do you pay your Mexican nanny/maid/personal assistant/cook/gardener/parent to your kids?

10. Are you jealous that your husband has more Botox than you?

11. Marry Fuck, marry, or marry kill: Donald Sterling, Donald Trump, and Hugh Hefner?

12. How much money did you spend last year on throwing “charity events” and how much money did you actually raise for charity?

13. Is tax evasion an acquired skill, or are you just born with it?

14. Can you really be considered human if the majority of your body is composed of synthetic materials?

15. Which of the choices below would you use to describe your skin color?

A) Tang

B) Hi-C

C) Pyridium

16. It’s fair to say your marriage is a form of prostitution, correct?

17. But seriously your face though

18. Which of the below would you say best describes your fashion mantra?

A) Every day is prom night!”

B) “If it’s not chunky, it’s not jewelry. #likevomit #asincannedbeefstew #see:myassbeforeIhaditreplaced

C) “Your clothing should always be more expensive than the cost of clean water for any given impoverished country. Otherwise, how can you be sure you’re better than all those brown people?”

Featured on News Cult: http://newscult.com/questions-ask-real-housewives-ever-chance-interview/

As Featured on News Cult: A How-To Guide to Spring Cleaning

Spring cleaning is cleaning on fleek. It’s not just your regular dusting, vacuuming, washing and scrubbing. It’s a complete overhaul of your home and life, both physically and spiritually. It’s a time to reassess and decide what you no longer want or need. And there are ways of doing it that streamline the process so that you get the most out of it. So here’s your how-to guide for spring cleaning.

Go into it from a minimalist perspective

The goal is to get rid of a lot of shit. We all have too much stuff, and there’s no need to live like that. It takes a literal and figurative load off when you toss unnecessary material items. So be prepared to just PURGE.

Set standards

For how you decide what to get rid of. I think that if you haven’t used something in the last year, that should be the main criteria. Then, things that are too worn, broken, or otherwise obviously can’t/won’t be used should go next. Otherwise, go with your gut—as you scan your belongings, if you don’t have a strong feeling or justification for wanting to keep something, or it just pulls at you or gives you weird vibes for whatever reason, decide to get rid of it.

Leave no stone unturned

Go through your entire home—every closet, under every bed, the attic, every cupboard, every storage bin—and pull out things to get rid of, using the above guidelines.

Make categories

For how you’re going to get rid of things. Usually, these are along the lines of throw away/recycle, donate/give away, or sell. This will help you feel more productive, and not like you’re just wasting everything by throwing it in the trash. If you’re super anal and your spirit animal is the label maker organized, you can make cute, color-coded labels for your categories.

Do the trashing/recycling first

Get it out of the way. Throw away or recycle (if possible) everything you want to get rid of that isn’t nice enough to donate, give away, or sell. **Please note** Your neighbors will apparently go through your trash so don’t throw anything away you aren’t prepared to see on the front page of the newspaper.

Then move on to the donating/giving away

Choose a charity or cause that you’ve vetted and you’re passionate about, and donate everything you possibly can to it (and as many others as you’d like). The best part of this is that you are doing good, (unless you’re a Republican, and then the best part for you is that you get a tax write off). Don’t be an asshole and donate shitty stuff—only donate gently used or new things (or follow the rules of the place you’re donating to, if it has them).

Another option is to give away things to your friends, family, neighbors, or anyone else you think could benefit from or would appreciate them. If you have stuff you’ve bought that’s brand new and you ‘ve never used, you can also repurpose it as gifts. I know that etiquette people are going to jump down my throat for this one, but why waste more money/resources if you already have something that would make an appropriate gift? Plus, it’s handy to keep a “gift drawer” at home that’s stocked with some nice little gifts anyways, in case you come upon a last minute need for one (read: when you’re a shitty friend/guest and don’t think ahead).

Or, you could throw a swap meet, where you and a  group of friends get together and bring items you’ve decided to get rid of that you can trade each other for. This is just a way to make spring cleaning more fun—make a party out of it (read: any excuse for alcohol)! And so that it doesn’t completely defeat the purpose of decluttering, you could make a rule that for each item you trade, you have to donate another. At the end, you can all make a drunken visit to your local Good Will or another organization and drop off your donations together.

Any of these ‘give away’ options will make you feel better about the incredible amount of money you’ve wasted buying things over the years. #noregrets #YOLO #HAGS 

Then sell

I’m not well-versed in the selling used items thing, but I know that some people are successful doing it. If you’re strapped for cash, see if a consignment or vintage store will take any of your clothes (although I’ve heard a lot of them are pretty snooty and don’t take even genuinely nice stuff—like, you’re a used clothing store, you’re already out of elitism’s reach… GTF over yourself). Or see if you can sell stuff online (I’ve had some success with selling college textbooks on Amazon). If you live near the endangered species known as bookstores and record stores, try selling your books/CDs/DVDs/albums there. Or get a booth at a flea market. I also just tried using thredUP, and while I just sent in my first bag so can’t make a super definitive personal value judgment yet, from what I can tell, they’re a good service—I especially like that they recycle items that people send them but they can’t sell (read: the offensively unstylish P’s OS you send in that no one, not even a naked redhead stranded on a beach at high noon, would wear).

Avoid keeping things at all cost

If you’re like me, you have hoarder instincts, which lead you to hold onto things for no reason. You even hold onto sentimental items that make you feel bad, like cards from old boyfriends, jeans that no longer fit, or other reminders of how you’ve failed at life that you’re fooling yourself into believing are somehow motivational to you in a positive way. But why keep stuff around that makes you feel bad or that otherwise serves no purpose (which then just makes you feel bad anyway because it’s proof of your wastefulness)? I mean, I know we’re not as bad as refusing to get rid of our baby’s dirty diapers or collecting every toothpick we’ve ever used, but still, holding onto anything that is in any way excessive or useless just doesn’t make sense. So just let it go. In other words, rather than confront your demons, just get rid of them. #denial #ifpantsaretootightandthey’renotintheclosettohauntyou,aretheyreallytootight?

Featured on News Cult: http://newscult.com/guide-spring-cleaning/

As Featured on News Cult: How to Battle Homesickness

Even though being around family can be a challenge, being away from them can sometimes, surprisingly, be even worse. Being away from home will make you realize you have feelings you didn’t think you ever possibly could—love for other human beings, compassion, sensitivity, the need for close relationships, and all the other things that have historically made you gag.  Enter: homesickness. Whether you’re going to sleep away camp for the first time at 10 years old or living and working in a faraway city, alone, in your 30’s, homesickness is real. Here’s how to battle it.

Video chat

For some reason this is more fulfilling than other forms of communication, like regular phone calls, texting, emailing, etc. Probably because it feels more real since you can see each other, disappointing bodies and all. And the software continues to become more accessible. You can pretty much do it any time, anywhere—while you’re at the grocery store, sobbing on your kitchen floor, need advice while clothes shopping, watching the same TV show so you can discuss and commentate in real time, during holiday gatherings so you can at least be virtually present for the dysfunction, and so on. My personal favorite is to video chat with my dogs. I don’t even need to see my family—just position the phone so I can see the animal and then you can leave.

Group texts

Loop your family into a group text chain so you feel like you’re still part of the tribe, can easily get/give updates, and won’t have a sense of displacement or missing out. Of course, you run the risk that your family members won’t respond to you or engage in the chain, which will make you feel like you’re talking to a wall, except this wall is composed of the only people you could probably ever really count on, although clearly you can’t, and I bet they have a whole separate chain going without you because frankly your loud voice annoys them and even though they can’t hear it over text they basically can because it’s that loud, plus they find your passion for certain conversation topics off-putting even though you think it’s perfectly reasonable to demand that if someone is going to say that they liked Spotlight, and, furthermore, didn’t take issue with Mark Ruffalo’s facial twitch, which can’t even be made ok by his stellar real-life politics (#feelthebern), they should be prepared to defend their position.

Make a point of going home for holidays

As many as you feasibly can, given your work schedule and budget. Plan far ahead to save money and so you’ll have something to look forward to. This way you won’t feel isolated during  every holiday (just most of them—silver linings, guys!). Like, even if you don’t give a fuck about Easter, go home for it, because otherwise, I guarantee that when your boss comes back from lunch one day having bought a giant nesting egg set to fill with candy for his toddler, you’ll burst into uncontrollable sobs about how you don’t have anyone who cares enough to plan an Easter egg hunt for you and yes you’re almost 30 but that’s not the point it’s the thought that counts and right now the only thought anyone is giving you is that apparently you sound like an emotionally unstable elephant to your downstairs neighbor when you walk around even though you’ve explained to them that genetically you’re big-boned and you’re not sorry about it and furthermore your robust thighs are actually appreciated in certain cultures so MAYBE they should broaden their worldview.

Remind yourself of what a pain your family can be

If you meditate on this every day, you’ll be a lot more grateful for your solitude, and less homesick about it. Spend 10-20 minutes each morning (at sunrise of course) mindfully visualizing how irritating it was to live under your parents’ roof (seriously just because they’re subsidizing your existence does not give them the right to ask you how your day was), how painful dinners with your extended family are because everyone can never agree on just how much of an asshole your cousin’s baby daddy is, and how you have absolutely zero privacy when family visits or vice versa (locks on doors won’t stop them!). #here’stoneversharingabathroomeveragain

Be social

Ugh I know. I knowwwwwwwww. But I am only suggesting this as a last resort. If you’re feeling lonely because you miss your family and there’s no other immediate solution, (here’s looking at you, unanswered group texts), you need to put yourself in a social situation that will make you forget your homesickness. I’m sure if you search your soul hard enough, you’ll find a gathering you can attend for at least 30 minutes before coming to the conclusion that you need to be shot in the face, STAT. If all else fails, just go hang out in the freezer section of any given grocery store—that is where you’ll find your people. #icecream&frozenpizza #theHolyland

Featured on News Cult: http://newscult.com/5-sure-fire-ways-get-home-sick/     

As Featured on News Cult: How to Get Over Writer’s Block

As I write this, I have writer’s block. I thought a good way to get over it would be to write a piece about how to get over it. Not sure that’s logical, but I figured it’s enough of a cyclical tactic that it’s bound to work eventually. So, that said, in real time, here’s how to get over writer’s block.

Put pen to paper

I hate to say it, but forcing yourself to do it is the only way you’ll get any sort of momentum. I’m pretty sure Nike’s slogan was a product of writer’s block. Even if what you write is complete shit, still make yourself start there. In my experience, it’s not as easy as just sitting down and forcing yourself to write one time and then you’re off to the races—you may have to do this several times until you start feeling like you’re making any progress and that it won’t always be such a battle. So start slow—maybe just jot down a few words today. Tomorrow, a sentence. Wednesday, a paragraph. Etc. And that way, too, if and when you fail, it will at least be a slow burn instead of a miraculous flame-out. #welikeourfailurelikewelikeourgeneralexistence #unnoticed

Stop being a perfectionist

I think part of writer’s block is fear that your product will be terrible. But if you just accept that it will be terrible, or at least less than perfect, you’ll free yourself of pressure to meet a certain standard, and then can write with abandon. No one’s perfect—not even people who claim to be. So don’t let your misguided aspirations/delusions of perfection stop you from expressing yourself—the Catholic church(/actually really any religion) sure doesn’t!

Cry about it

Yes, your creative dry spell is majorly heart-wrenching. So just let it out. Will you ever be able to write again? It’s impossible to say. Have you lost your vision forever? Probably. Are you less insightful, witty, and original than you thought? 100%. You have every reason to weep. And while you should probably just end it all now because clearly you’re going nowhere, also consider getting over it. #buildthatbridge #thenburnit #afteryougetoverit #becauseifyouburnitbeforeyougetoverityouwon’tbeabletogetoverit #butyou’reallclearafteryougetoverit #burnbabyburn #bernbabybern #BernieSanders2016 #seewhatIdidthere  

Realize that writer’s block is mostly composed of your laziness

Sure, it’s more glamorous to say that our muse has left us, but really, we’re mainly just too lazy to do the hard work that is writing. I don’t think anyone knows why anyone writes, because it’s really just hard. Overall, the process is agonizing. So it makes sense that sometimes we feel like watching 9 hours of shitty reality TV back-to-back instead. We don’t need to term that “writer’s block”—we can just be honest with ourselves. And also not feel ashamed for it—everyone needs and wants breaks. To be allowed, that instinct doesn’t have to be manipulated into some version of martyrdom.

Focus on what you’d enjoy writing about

And do that. Maybe you’re having writer’s block on a subject that you don’t particularly care about. Makes sense. So if you can switch to something you give 2 shits about (at least—aim for 2-4 shits given), your block may dissolve. I know this is easier said than done, especially if you’re writing on assignment. But try to find creative ways to make whatever you’re writing about more appealing to you so that the process of writing about it will be less painful. One way to accomplish this is to look at every piece of writing as a learning opportunity; everything you write requires some knowledge on your part, and that may mean you have to do some learning before you can write with authority. And learning new things is great—mainly because then when someone says something ignorant, you can shut them the fuck down with complete peace of mind. #writingisyourweapon

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