I Give The Best Relationship Advice—Too Bad I Never Take It Myself

I Give The Best Relationship Advice—Too Bad I Never Take It Myself iStock/djiledesign

I’ve found that when my girlfriends are having any kind of relationship drama, they turn to me for advice. I’m not exactly sure why considering my history with men has been a trainwreck at best, but maybe it’s because I’m not afraid to give them some harsh home truths. What’s funny is that when it comes to my own relationships, I can never seem to follow my own dating wisdom:

  1. Feel your feelings no matter what they are. It’s so easy to swallow every ounce of bad emotion and pretend it doesn’t exist. Truthfully, that’s my go-to method when I really don’t want to deal with the stress of it all. I’ve begun to notice that doing that really stunts the whole process of functioning. Sure, being numb helps for a little bit, but I try and tell others to steer clear of that. It’s important to actually feel your feelings so that they don’t get repressed and come out later, probably at the worst time imaginable.
  2. Talk about EVERYTHING, no matter how silly you may think it is. I have a lot of irrational thoughts in my brain at any given time and I have a hard time expressing those out loud to anyone. When I’m committed to a person, I shouldn’t be afraid to admit to even the most ridiculous things I’m thinking. I tend to go on the vague side or completely leave out things that are bothering me as to not appear weird. However, I’ll tell anyone that asks to be as honest as possible about whatever they’re thinking because it’s healthy to talk about those things. You never know—they may actually end up being valid and by discussing them it could lead to a resolution.
  3. You can only control your own life. I really like being able to predict the future and even persuade an outcome but in reality, I know that’s not possible. It’s a hard thing to let go of because I think that with certain actions, I can sway things to go my way. However, I always tell others to give up control and let things play out. It’s entirely too stressful to think you have any power over other people’s actions. Once that thought is gone, it’s so much easier to focus on yourself and let things fall as they may.
  4. Honesty really is best, no matter how much it might suck. I wouldn’t call myself a liar by any means, but I’ve definitely twisted details or omitted a few things a time or two and usually, the truth comes out in the end anyway and I end up looking silly. If I feel like I’m being pushed to admit something I’m ashamed of, I get really terrified and look for a way out of it. This is absolutely the wrong move, so if asked, I’ll always say to just be flat out honest. Even if things don’t go the way you’d hoped, at least you were forthcoming and don’t have to live with the stress of lying. The truth can hurt of course, but it’s the right thing to do in practically any case.
  5. Fear is an illusion. I can’t say how many times I’ve let my fear take over what I believe is to be true. I have created more fake realities than I care to mention and it’s all because I don’t want to face the harshness of life. I’ve procrastinated my growth as a person because of this and I don’t want that for anyone else. I try and share my experiences about how this has affected me negatively in hopes that someone learns from my mistakes. I know that the mind is powerful and we have that power to create our own realities and give ourselves the life we want and deserve. Easier said than done but definitely possible—and a lot better than living in fear of the unknown.
  6. Don’t worry until you have to. In addition to having ridiculous thoughts and living in fear of what I don’t know, I also like to worry about things before they even happen. I become so paralyzed at the thought of something bad happening and then when it never does, I wonder why I bothered to worry in the first place. It goes hand in hand with letting go of control. I’ll explain to others to save the anxiety of worrying until you actually have a reason to. At least then you can proceed with a clearer mind and handle it rationally.
  7. If you’re not good with yourself, you won’t be good for others. This is a classic but one I’m constantly forgetting to implement in my own life. I like to make sure others are comfortable and I sacrifice my own needs a lot in the process. I don’t notice it until it’s gone on so long it’s become routine and I start feeling really empty. No one should have to get to that point, so if I see someone I care about starting to lose themselves, I’ll do my best to remind them if they aren’t happy and healthy then they are of no use to anyone else. You have to be in a good state of mind to be able to be strong for those in your life, so always take care of you.
  8. Stop lying to yourself. I have a running list of lies I tell myself to justify or excuse any form of bad behavior I’m partaking in. If I have a good reason to do it, it can’t be that bad, right? So it’s funny that this is probably the first and most important piece of advice I’ll offer up to others. Once people stop lying and admit what’s actually, logically real, things start to fall into place naturally with not much effort and a lot less stress. By simply being true to yourself, I think a lot of the negative energy subsides on its own and that leaves you with far less to worry about so you can focus on being happy.
jordan is a writer from salt lake city who enjoys a good steak, her dog, and conversations about how radiohead is awesome. she hopes to be a talking head on some VH1 pop-culture show someday and can curate a playlist for any occasion. when she grows up she wants to be an olsen twin.