Comedian and Podcaster Paul Gilmartin shares 15 tips for teenagers and the adults who love them.
Someone asked me to give life tips to teenagers. I’m no expert but I know these would have helped me when I was one.
1.Know that everyone is afraid.
2.Don’t compare your insides to other people’s outsides.
3.99% of the things that seem so important right now won’t matter in the long run.
4.Nobody has it “figured out”
5.We never stop learning so don’t beat yourself up for not knowing something.
6.Pain can make us stronger. Surviving the worst times of our lives can be a source of future strength, especially if we open up about it.
7.It’s okay if your sexuality or gender can’t be easily defined. Don’t waste your time trying to please anyone who doesn’t accept it.
8.There are no unhealthy thoughts or feelings, just healthy or unhealthy ways of dealing with them.
9.Almost everybody has sexual fantasies that make them uncomfortable. Don’t shame yourself for them. If you’re not hurting anyone, embrace them. We don’t choose what turns us on. It’s like freckles. They’re just there.
10.There is nothing you have done, said or thought that someone else hasn’t.
11.Your emotions won’t kill you but running from them might.
12.We don’t have to be overtly abused in childhood to be damaged. The absence of a healthy emotional environment can be just as hard on a person as being abused because the message the child receives in both cases is the same, “You don’t matter.“
13.When you’re not getting what you want, there’s a good chance it’s the Universe looking out for you in the long run.
14.The things we hate having to go through can often be the very thing that builds our character; a forced gym membership for the soul.
15.Life is a roller coaster. You’re strapped in. You can wish it was over or you can throw your hands in the air and hope you don’t shit your pants.
For more on parenting, see The Imperfect Parent’s Guide to Parenting. For an earlier Good Men Project article about Paul and his podcast, read it. You can find more of Paul’s work at his website, Mentalpod.
Content courtesy of the Mental Illness Happy Hour, used by permission.
Photo by Rolands Lakis