1. Remember to lift your wiper blades if there’s snow in the forecast. Sometimes, you know there’s a real adult nearby just by looking at context clues. Do you see a car parked uphill with the front tires turned away from the curb? You know damn well a grown ass adult parked that car. Did someone just write you a check and actually fill in the memo blank with something other than “pornography” or “my butt”? That bill of exchange was definitely written by someone who’s really got their shit together. Are there light flurries coming down out of the sky, but yours is the only car on the street whose wiper blades aren’t sticking straight up in the air? Then I hope you take the extra time you’ll require to get your car cleaned off after six inches of snowfall to think about the myriad ways in which you’re disappointing your parents. (Addendum: please remember to put said wipers back down before you use them, otherwise when you turn them on it’ll look like your car is frantically trying to wave “hello” to someone.)
2. Don’t drink quite as much. Mmhmm yes, I know. Easier said than done. But the older you get, the harsher your hangovers are. A night of drinking that would have had you leaping like a sprightly gay gazelle out of bed in the morning at 21 has you flolloping sadly out of bed like a lasagna noodle that’s been soaked in vinegar and then had its feelings hurt. Basic corporeal functions are so difficult during an adult hangover that it feels like your entire body is slave to a puppet master who has no idea how humans are supposed to walk, talk, eat, or function. Additionally, drunk adult texts are soooooooo much sadder than drunk teen or twenty-something texts. “omg i love youssoomch plz lets go to CANADAA togeter (seventeen heart-eye emojis)” evolves into “what even is the point of anything tho” or “jus plz txt me when you home so Iknowyoure not dead (skull emoji).” It’s not pretty. Morning You will appreciate Last Night You’s prescience re: the existential horror of a morning after too much whiskey.
3. Get rid of some clothes. Wait until your lowest point of the week, emotionally. No, seriously. This is the absolute best time to get rid of clothes you don’t really wear, because you’re not feeling particularly confident or optimistic about anything, and that will translate into not giving a shit about most of your clothes. (It’s sort of like the “don’t go grocery shopping when you’re hungry” logic.) Feeling generally shitty about life, decisions you’ve made re: life, life’s general trajectory, the ineffable knowledge that the one life you have will be over in a cosmic blink of an eye? Great! Then you definitely don’t need that argyle cardigan you bought five years ago because you thought it made you look “professorial.” And your collection of seventeen v-neck tees in a variety of colors could be pared down to a respectable five and you wouldn’t even miss the other twelve at all because you’ll be too busy thinking about global warming and America’s failed justice system!
4. Spend more time with puppies. Puppies get it, man. They’re just hanging out, doing their thing, chewing on their own feet, not giving two craps about the world. Whatever’s in front of them at any particular moment is the coolest most wonderful thing ever and it must be sniffed incessantly and then maybe sat on or else it could disappear/become sad/fly away. Find a bunch of puppies to squish up into your face in 2016. If that doesn’t drastically improve your outlook on life, then I don’t know how you’re even reading this because you’re clearly a brick or a slab of cement with no feelings.
5. Be less judgy. This may require a pretty drastic paradigm shift for you if you’re inclined toward the belief that yours are the most important opinions, proper tastes, or ways of living life. If this is in fact the case, then please put this item at the top of the list as it is of the utmost importance for everyone else’s sake that you change this mode of thinking pronto. But you, like pretty much everybody else on earth, probably just lean slightly toward a natural solipsism that, if left unchecked, can poop little droppings of judgment out its butt and leave them disagreeably on the carpet for others to step in. And that’s ok! Just try to tell yourself a few times a day that the fact that you don’t like something or disagree with an opinion doesn’t mean others aren’t entitled to like it or agree with it. Not super into Star Wars? Cool, great, awesome, who cares. Not super into people who are super into Star Wars? I’m sure that gives you some modicum of comfort while you sit around being a huge bummer, but zip it. Being super excited about something puts more positive vibes out there in the world than being a buzzkill does. So less haterade, more “OMG YASS,” please.
6. Learn all the words to The Animaniac’s 50 states and capitals song. Not only would it make for a great party trick, serve you well at most standard bar trivia nights, and woo any and all prospective romantic conquests toward you like you’re a sexy and erudite tractor beam, it would also place you among the, I dunno, 2% of Americans who can name all the states and capitals in under three minutes. SUPER worth your time.
7. Find at least one friend with whom you can invent an elaborate secret high five. The more complex the better. I bet this would feel so cool.