Crisis Managment for a Generation of Over-Thinkers
More often than not, I write about things that take a toll on our lives substantially. But what about the things that aren’t totally newsworthy?
We cry over the dumbest stuff sometimes. And it’s stuff that really hurts our hearts and our heads. Even with the perspective that this situation probably won’t matter a year from now or that it’s not worth crying about-- it hurts.
While I’ve had weeks in my life that I had to have a good cry for a solid part of the night, the conversations I had during that time helped me more than I ever thought words could. I hope that whoever reads this will be bookmarking it so they can return to read again and it can be a one-stop-shop for a boost.
I’ve asked some of the strongest women in my life for their advice during times of this kind of distress. Whether it’s stress brought on by boys, relationships or self-love, trusting yourself and all of this good stuff.
“...relationships are overrated! AND I'VE BEEN IN ONE FOR THREE YEARS. Yeah, it's nice to always have someone be there for you but the thing is... you're the person who will always be there for yourself. You have decades of life left and yeah, your ultimate goal might be to fall in love... but my advice to you is to fall in love with YOURSELF first. That's the biggest mistake I've made and I'm only 21. Again, decades of life left to fall in love with myself. If you don't love yourself, you might find yourself making choices that don't benefit you and choices that only cause harm… I don't think you can necessarily stop being an overthinker, however, I do think that you can just become an average thinker[?]. Once your brain has learned how to do something it's incredibly hard to stop. For example, cracking for fingers, biting your nails. However, once you stop those things you feel a sense of pride and accomplishment, right? Same with overthinking. It's all about training yourself to work differently!” - Natalie, the girlfriend who is always there
“One of the most important things I can think of for women is "if you aren't happy alone, you aren't going to be happy with someone else"If you aren't where you want/need to be in life, just getting a boyfriend or husband or partner is not going to change who you are...finding someone to share your life with is great but it won't guarantee happiness. At. ALL. ‘Everything you need to know is in 'When Harry Met Sally'.” - Maggie, everyone is entitled to her opinion.
“Never sell yourself short, and keep your girlfriends [omitted] close because they matter the most...blissful times are always around the corner” - Nana, the woman who told me that my 20’s will be full of ups and downs, I never doubted her but I hate that she was right
“If they don’t like you for who you are, then they aren’t the right person for you. In order to be confident around boys — or anyone —you need to feel confident about yourself. [...] you need to be fine all by yourself, you need to surround yourself with true friends that you enjoy spending time with, and you need to find things to do that truly fulfill YOU. The biggest “ah ha” moment I ever had was when I realized — at about 20 years old — that not everyone was going to like me and I wasn’t going to like everyone. Once I realized that, and knew that my true self was worthy of love and friendship, things got soooo much easier when it came to relationships.” - Jen, on being true to yourself.
“That it totally sucks and hurts and the pain is real. But each day will get better to the point that one day you’ll say, “Thank God I’m not with that person.” You’ll see more clearly how you may have changed since that relationship — how your thinking has changed, how you’ve grown to know what you really want in life and in the people you chose to spend your time with. With the end each relationship, good or bad, you will grow — better and stronger. Embrace that. I would also tell them to use self care strategies — they are invaluable. Pamper yourself with home facials or lather yourself with a great smelling lotion. Exercise — take long walks or do some yoga and deep breathing. Eat healthy foods. Listen to music that makes you happy. Talk it out with a friend or loved one. Write in a journal. Stay busy.” Jen, on getting over that one guy.
“Theses situations are really tough, because they can really get under your skin. You want to be right, you want the other person to let you know it’s not fair, and you want to feel validated. But it’s so freeing and gratifying to rise above it and let it go. I always tell my daughter if a person is not treating you well, even though you know in your heart that you’ve done nothing wrong, they are most likely treating people the same way. It’s not you, it’s them. Just let it go and focus on being the wonderful person you are. Being a genuinely good person will take you very far in life. The rewards are not instant, but you will see them unfold as you get older.” Jen, on overthinking
“Definitely knowing your worth is super important and I think the older I have gotten I have realized this and that adds to a lot of the confidence you have when asking people out and things like that. But ultimately just fucking to do it. Shut down that little voice that is holding you back and GO FOR IT! Whether its talking to someone you're interested in or if you want to make a friend. Yes of course being rejected is absolutely terrifying but it’s also a part of life and something we have to get used to because we will be rejected in some way in our lives whether it’s from someone we like, a job, etc. It is more of your reaction afterwards that I think is important. DO NOT let it hinder you from asking someone else out or really putting yourself out there to make connections with people...- Idalis, keeping it real 24/7
"Do not ever let someone’s rejection of you ruin your confidence if they can't see how fabulous you are then just keep throwing your glitter where it is wanted and appreciated because you deserve it.” - Idalis
“...you probably feel like your life is so incomplete without this person or you feel as if it is the end of the world but trust me, it’s not. At this age, people are still growing both physically and mentally so it is possible for people to grow out of each other as well...maybe it is time for you to really sit with yourself and get to know who you are so that you can surround yourself with people...so you can mutually support each other. If someone in your life is not making you happy or helping you be a better person and genuinely care about you then I don't think those people are necessary in your life...If these are tears because of a(n) (ex)boyfriend...do not waste your tears on some boy who probably never even cared about you in the first place. It is probably a blessing they are being removed from your life. This is literally the best time to just turn off all electronics and just really sit and get to know you and learn from the situation. But foreal tho FUCK HIM!” - Idalis, still keeping it FUCKING REAL to her 15 y/o self
“I am quite the petty person...I would say that being direct and really just communicating how you really feel to someone helps a lot with just putting the pettiness aside and really getting to what is really wrong. Being petty does not help ANYTHING but it’s great for reality TV. I should probably lay off watching Real Housewives of Atlanta and that might help with me being so petty all the time.” - Idalis, 100% Organic, GMO-free realness on overthinking annoying situations
“...it takes a lot of self awareness, but I've found that a little reminder that I'm still young, still figuring things out, and want to do so much more by myself before I commit to a relationship.” Darby, 22, and mentor of mine from high school
“She [Mom] would always put things into perspective, walking me through what my life would/might be like in a year, and ask if I could picture said person at that point in my life. And, if the person truly wasn't worth it, or was toxic, or had a different path than I was going down, the answer would be no...the answer was often no. I've definitely held on to this habit and this kind of advice, and I think it's exactly what I'd say to mysterious 15 year old girl. What is that, like a sophomore in high school? Eugh...pass.” - Darby, on advice to her younger self. She totally has a summer birthday
“I am so notorious for getting in my head and overthinking E V E R Y T H I N G, and it's a struggle to break out of those thoughts and see what's really going on. I blame the general anxiety disorder. To stick with the theme of my answers, at my healthiest and least anxious, I try and take a step back and identify what exactly is making my overthink and be anxious. Sometimes I have no idea, sometimes I can point to the exact thing someone said to make me feel this way. A technique I've been trying lately is to think of the best possible scenario for said petty/silly situation, and then think of the worst possible scenario. Often times the worst scenario is so ridiculous and far fetched, and the best scenario is much more realistic, that things seem to settle in my head. Also, a couple deep breaths and a good distraction are a good go-to if you just want to stop thinking about things for a minute and process them later. I find a lot of times if I just distance myself from the situation for a bit and readdress it later, I can brush the insignificant things off easier than within the moment.” - Darby, on self-care and overthinking
“This is just a blurb that I want every girl to know…. hell I might even get it tattooed on my forehead: GIRLS: GUYS WILL CALL YOU CRAZY. YOU ARE NOT CRAZY. I REPEAT: YOU ARE NOT CRAZY.” - Alexa, the light of my life
“Insecurity comes from comparison. We compare what we think to be is our worst feature to someone else’s best feature, which furthers our insecurity. It’s unfair- if we compared our best feature to someone else’s best feature, we will come out equal. One time I read something on tumblr that has stuck with me for years, I can’t remember what the exact quote was, but it was talking about snowflakes and Christmas lights being equally beautiful but completely different. There are so many types of beauty in this world, it is necessary to admire people’s beauty without questioning your own!” - Alexa being enlightening as her confident, smart self
Now for something extra special...
Words From Brigid: By Brigid Rosemary Behrens
- (On men) Honestly, he probably watches animé. We can’t let them hurt us.
- They always come back. Tried and true. A guy will break your heart, and whether it’s two weeks or two years afterwards, you post one good selfie or hot bikini pic, and they come crawling back. (Annie's Note; and by the time they do, you've realized you're better off without them.)
- A comforting thought: in reference to guys not texting back/making excuses/not texting first/seeming unavailable, things are not always as they seem. He could very well actually be super busy this whole week, he could’ve actually forgotten to reply to your text, and more of the like. Don’t jump to conclusions when you don’t have to.
- TREAT YOURSELF. When you are fucked up on a broken heart, do anything that comes to your mind that you like. Watch The Office on repeat, take a nice bath, eat 75 bagels, perform a satanic ritual. Whatever brings you peace. Whatever makes you happy.
- Shuffling Britney Spears on Spotify and listening to it super loudly literally changes your life. Always reminds me what a QUEEN I am.
- Distract yourself. Spend time with friends, go shopping, pick up shifts at work, take up knitting, doesn’t really matter what you do- just do something that you can do for 6 hours, then snap out of it and realize you haven’t thought about him that whole time. Distraction.
- Distractions are super useful but don’t let your phone be one of them. Constantly checking his snapchat story, Instagram, location, or (the weirdest one) looking through his likes on Twitter. I hope I’m not the only one. I find this very revealing about a person and, you know, 100% tells me how they feel about me. No doubt. They like tweets based on our current standing as a relationship.
- If it’s a man that’s got you down, think about how awful men are and sometimes you can sicken yourself to such a point with his species that you’ll really hate him for a bit. These people exist; Donald Trump, Henry Weinstein (Annie's note; I chose not to correct Brigid here) , the guy that told me the other day that he loooooves mini skirts, and Gandhi (I fucking hate you Gandhi). See I’m already grossed out. This guy is already not worth the trouble.
- MOST IMPORTANT. Think about (maybe even list) all the people in your life that have no trouble at all seeing your astronomical value as a human. Your mom, dad, relatives, roommates, neighbors, friends, and more that love you and see your true worth everyday. You are great and that is known by many people, even if this guy/girl isn’t seeing it.
Brigid Rosemary Behrens
Woman, Life Coach, and Inspiration to All