THINGS SPORT ANNOUNCERS SAY THAT LITERALLY ANYONE ELSE COULD ALSO SAY

Sports are a way of life. Not for all people, certainly, but for a lot of people. Because who doesn’t love getting overly invested in the performance of your favorite team and favorite players? Probably people who enjoy more stress-free ways of living or low blood pressure. It’s irritating when your team is not playing well, or worse: losing, or even worse: losing to your rival. In those moments you learn a lot about yourself as a person – where your priorities truly lie, how you handle stress, what you’re like under the pressure of trash talk, whether or not you’re a gracious loser, and how competitive you are regarding things that you have less than zero control over.

While sports have a lot of positives, there are some negative aspects that you have to deal with. Rioting, losing friendships, scandals, losing money, cheating, drugs, etc. And then, of course, you have the announcers. Sport announcers are there to say helpful things and aid in the viewing experience of the game. Supposedly. There is a most curious breakdown of things that can, and will, come out of an announcers mouth during the period of play. Ask any sports fan and they have announcers that they like, announcers that they tolerate, and then announcers they cannot stand.

Regardless of how you feel about the announcer, their dialogue can best be summarized as follows. Usually they throw some fun statistics in there and some inspiring story about the team, or a specific player. Constantly they will talk about what can best be described as sport conspiracy theories regarding playoffs based on the team’s performance to date. This includes, but is not limited to, previously played games, the current game being played, upcoming schedule of games, and what both a win and a loss mean going into the next day. It’s great to hear when they’re talking in favor of your team, and it’s the most obnoxious thing in the world when it’s against your team.

Some of the time they will interject with memories about their time participating in said sport, which usually feels more like a backdoor brag than anything. But then, the rest of the time is spent with them saying ridiculous things that anyone else in the whole freaking planet could also say. Sports fan, or not. And it just makes you stop and think about how they landed this cushy, well-paid, gig when you could also easily make broad statements about the nature of a sport. Statements such as:

  • What they’re trying to do here is win
  • If you ask me, they need to score more points
  • Coach does not look happy
  • If I played like that, I’d be sitting on the bench
  • That’s not good defense
  • To win, they’re going to need to beat the other team
  • I’m not sure what they’re thinking out there
  • Defense fell asleep on that play
  • They’ve dug themselves a big hole
  • Time is running out
  • I don’t agree with that call
  • I think that was a good call
  • From this angle, it’s hard to tell
  • I can’t see what’s happening down there
  • I think that a win would feel good
  • Offense wins games
  • Defense wins games
  • A loss is not going to be good here
  • They’re not going to be happy leaving the tournament early
  • They’ll only be satisfied holding the championship trophy

I could go on, but this feels like an inclusive enough list to make my point. Basically, sports announcers just find different ways to state the obvious. Or to say the wrong mascot for a team. People want to win. People don’t like to lose. Other people are often in charge of making decisions that you may, or may not, agree with. Failing to reach the end goal is never satisfying. And reaching a longtime dream is the best feeling in the world. None of that feels overly exclusive to sports – more of a life thing in general. All I’m saying is change the sport terms into everyday terms and you’ve got a recipe for inspirational sayings. Kind of feels like anyone could do it.

Alright, jumping off my pedestal for now. If you know someone who would enjoy this post and want to share it with them, that would be awesome. Sharing is caring, after all. Don’t forget to subscribe to get these in your inbox twice weekly and follow TRP on Twitter for frequent musings. Thanks for reading!


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YOU NEED TO CALM DOWN

We have all had an unpleasant encounter with someone who is just irrationally angry, at some point. You know, the people who call you up, or (even worse) are face-to-face with you, and have this need to tell you exactly how they feel in the most offensive and hurtful way possible? These people make me sad. For one, I had no part in whatever it is you’re upset about – I don’t even work here. But mainly, how unhappy are you in life that you feel a need to blow something trivial way out of proportion? Are you trying to ruin someone else’s day?

Want to know a fun fact? You aren’t ruining my day. No, to be honest, I’m not even really listening because you’re talking yourself in circles and not making sense. Plus, you’re just being loud, so I’m going to let you wear yourself out first. My favorite part about these people, is most of the time it’s user error. Oh, so your upcoming flight isn’t showing up on your calendar? Did you add it to the calendar? No? Hmmm, well that’s interesting – it’s hard to see something that you never created! Oh, so your burrito costs more because it has guacamole on it? Did you not listen when the Chipotle employee told you it would cost extra? Or did you not read the board with that same information very clearly printed on it? No? Hmmm, well that’s interesting – seems like a very personal problem.

Personally, I choose to live my life by this amazing quote: ‘Don’t let idiots ruin your day’. Check. Don’t worry, I’m still going to have an amazing day because happiness is a choice. My favorite part about these interactions is when our irrational friend realizes they screwed up. The face stays red, but subtly moves from the angry lobster red to embarrassment blush red. Now, I’m not a vengeful person, but can we all agree that feeling is satisfying? Granted, in a slightly evil way, but we aren’t the ones trying to make the girl behind the register cry so we can get out of paying, now are we?

Maybe I’m not a very angry person either, but how does one get to that stage? Is this impacting your ability to act like an adult? You know that you can still voice frustration in a reasonable way, right? Is this really the example you want to set for the people around you? There are children EVERYWHERE, you know (it’s slightly creepy).

What’s that? You haven’t ever dealt with someone like that? Your life is all glitter, and rainbows, and CHEWY CHIPS AHOY cookies? Well, this is awkward, but you are that irrationally angry person. Yes, I know you think you’re reasonable, and fun, and easy-going, but no. You would be incorrect. You are an overreacter and tend to blame things on others to get your way. Wow, that’s a tough pill to swallow, isn’t it. You’re probably starting to get a little red right now. Thinking about composing a very friendly email for me. Totally great – bring it on! As Germany Kent said, ‘Stop giving people the power to control your smile, your worth, your attitude, and your day. Don’t give anyone that much power over your life’. BOOM! You have no power over my life! So all of your anger will do, well, nothing to me. I’ll read your lovely email, take it, feel a little sad for your unhappiness, then smile and move on.

But I get it – it’s not as easy as that for everyone. Getting screamed at isn’t exactly something you wake up in the morning hoping for. That’s ok. New savage queen, Taylor Swift, wrote a song for times like these. It’s pretty much the perfect response template for dealing with one of the hotheads. A whole song can be hard to remember so I’ll just give you the highlights:

  • You are somebody that I don’t know, but you’re taking shots at me like it’s Patron. And I’m just like d*mn. It’s (INSERT TIME HERE)
  • You need to calm down. You’re being too loud
  • You need to just stop. Like, can you just not?
  • Why are you mad? When you could be glad?
  • Control your urges to scream about all the people you hate

How easy is that? You need to calm down. Why? Oh, because you’re being too loud and I don’t know you. Moral of this rant: there’s no need to be so angry – choose happiness.

Alright, jumping off my pedestal for now. If you know someone who tends to overreact to everything, pass this along so they can scream at me not you. Maybe one day they’ll understand that life is short enough without tempting fate with frequent spikes to their blood pressure. Thanks for reading!


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AIN’T NOBODY GOT TIME FOR THAT

Some things in life suck – breakups, getting fired, paying bills, when your team gets upset in the March Madness tournament, ripping your pants, losing the TV remote, running out of Chewy Chips Ahoy (READ MORE on my love for these cookies), cleaning a mirror to find streaks left behind (I think this is THE WORST – find out why HERE), etc. How do you react when it happens? Me, personally, am a pity partier. I’m not proud of that, but sharing is caring. Then one day someone gave me the best advice. They said ‘Let it go already! Ain’t nobody got time for that!’ And my first thought was ‘You’re my therapist … I’m paying you to have time for this’. But in reality, no, nobody has time for that! Not me, not you, not my therapist, apparently. 

What is even the purpose of a pity party? According to the Oxford Dictionary, a pity party is defined as ‘an instance of indulging in self-pity or eliciting pity from other people’. That’s all nice and dandy, but let’s dive deeper. What is pity? Well, if you ask the Oxford Dictionary (AKA a Google Search for pity) it’s either ‘the feeling of sorrow and compassion caused by the suffering and misfortunes of others’ or ‘a cause for regret or disappointment’. 

Literally just typing that made me feel like a terrible person. What is wrong with us as a species? Why do we think it’s ok to force our sadness and misfortunes on unassuming people who were probably having a great day until you started moaning about the sandwich you ordered only being medium warm instead of hot out of the oven? Newsflash: NOBODY CARES! We get it, you’re sad. You know what won’t make you happy? Constantly reminiscing on how your life sucks right now and you’re in a tough spot. You know what will make you feel better, though? Well, Chewy Chips Ahoy for one, but also moving on and realizing that you can’t change the past, but you can change the future.

So your heart is broken? There’s more than one person in the world – go find someone better! So you lost your job? Use your experience to write a killer resume – then go get a better one with a higher salary! So your bills are due … again? Well, you don’t technically have to pay them if you don’t want to, you just won’t have electricity/water/cell service/Internet/etc. if you don’t. Oh, your bracket is ruined? Whose isn’t? That Cinderella team lost a lot of people money, not just you, and they moved on so suck it up buttercup.

By now, you’re probably thinking ‘That’s great and all, but easier said than done. Tell me something I don’t know’. Alright, fine. Have you ever seen the Pixar film Inside Out? There’s a lot of articles on the science behind it, but in my unprofessional opinion it boils down to this: whichever emotion you allow to control your switchboard is the one that controls every aspect of your life. So if you let Pity run the show, then that pity seeps into your actions, into your relationships with others, into your bones (hello constant exhaustion and tired muscles), and into your thoughts. You ooze pity and no one wants to interact with someone who looks like they might start rambling about how an unauthorized person parked in their spot and they forgot an umbrella so now they’re soaking wet. Would you go talk to that person? I wouldn’t because I don’t need your pity jumping onto my switchboard. I’ve got problems of my own, I don’t need yours too.

What’s my point here? Never to feel sad, or to talk about how you’re down about something that happened? No, that’s unnatural and a strong indicator of a psychopath. Feel that emotion, feel that weight, let it piss you off, question what led up to it, allow yourself to have that self-pity, talk to someone about how it’s affecting you! But don’t hold on to it. Don’t let it take over your switchboard and run your life for weeks, months, or years. Accept that it happened, learn from it, and get on with your life. Make that ex jealous, make your old boss beg to have you back, buy 12 different TV remotes so you can always find one, go off-the-grid and get rid of your bills, etc. And if you are struggling to do that for yourself, then please, for the love of God, do it for us because AIN’T NOBODY GOT TIME FOR THAT!

Alright, jumping off my pedestal for now. If you know someone who is pity partying it up, pass this along so they can know that their reservation at the Pity Inn is up, and if they want to keep staying there, then something new has to happen to them. Otherwise GET OUT! Thanks for reading!


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LIFE LESSONS FROM CUSTOMER SERVICE

Working on the front lines in a customer facing role feels like a crucial life skill that everyone should experience at some point during their working lives. It gives you a certain viewpoint and helps lead to empathy, patience, and kindness towards those workers in the future. For normal people anyways. How could you not want to be kind to a customer service representative if you’ve had the chance to be on the receiving end of the call? Especially knowing how unpleasant some customers are to deal with.

Let’s clear the air and set one thing straight. Rarely is it even the customer service worker’s fault. Did they break the product? No. Did they send out a marketing email promo that doesn’t work? No. Did they go on the coffee run and get your order wrong? No. Did they decide to completely pivot the business model screwing over current customers? No. Did they decide to acquire a rival company? No. Did they make empty promises during the sale? No. Did they fail to complete a thorough product test before shipping the update to production causing a major bug? No. Did they conjure up a storm that knocked out power, and thus the Internet, causing you to lose access to unsaved changes? No. Did they deliver the shipment in a careless way causing damage? No.

I could go on, but I feel like the main point here is very clear: the person you are talking to is merely a middle man attempting to help you, despite it not being their fault. Saints. Granted, you usually can’t go straight to the source, which, honestly, is the smartest thing companies ever implemented. That doesn’t make some of the responses warranted, though. But this post is not about how some of us really need to calm down. No, it’s about what working in the customer service industry teaches an individual.

Mute Buttons are Your Best Friend

Has there ever been a time where you’ve responded to someone without really thinking about what you’re saying, or the potential professional implications of those words? The mute button exists. Use the mute button. Think of it as a trial run. It could save your life.

Some Things Need to Run Their Course

Remember that time when you were really angry and summarized all of your feelings into one, concise sentence? Me neither, because that’s not a thing. Angry is to rambling as white is to rice. They go together – wait out the storm.

Patience Doesn’t Always Work

Patience is a virtue. And Oreos are delicious. Doesn’t mean they’re healthy. There are situations where being passive is not the right choice. Put your best fake smile on and go with blunt honesty. Don’t let the bulldogs walk over you because you appear willing to listen indefinitely.

Some People Are Just Sour Patch Kids

We all know the human SOUR PATCH KIDS. The ones who are sour at first and absolutely ruin your appetite for no reason. Like, I don’t know who peed in your Cheerios this morning, but I did not do, whatever it is you’re upset about, to you. Your complaint isn’t even about our company.

Life is Short, Move On

Not everyone is worth your memory. Deal with it in the moment, then make like a goldfish and forget. Move on! You’ll be happier.

Sometimes It’s Better To Not Say Anything

Would you jump in front of a moving train? I certainly hope not. Know when you need to simply put your headset on the desk and SURF BUZZFEED for a bit until the anger train finally comes to a stop. If you get invested in an article and simply can’t return to the question, ask how it makes them feel to start that steam engine again.

You Won’t Always Have an Answer

There will come a point where you are no longer all-knowing. Where you will need to go find the answer and circle back. Don’t be disappointed, this buys you time and teaches you something! Might as well kill two birds with one stone. Maybe hot head will have cooled down in the meantime.

Dodge, Duck, Dip, Dive, And Dodge

When in doubt, follow the 5 D’s of dodgeball: dodge, duck, dip, dive, and dodge. Throw the department who put you in this mess under the bus. Did I spit on your pizza? No, that must have been an oversight from the cooking staff – I will follow up with them right away. Who me? No you must mean that team over there. Deflect for the win … and for your sanity. Besides they won’t be able to contact the real problem team to confirm.

Alright, jumping off my pedestal for now. If you know someone who would enjoy this post and want to share it with them, that would be awesome. Sharing is caring, after all. Don’t forget to subscribe to get these in your inbox twice weekly and follow TRP on Twitter for frequent musings. Thanks for reading!


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LIFE LESSONS FROM COLLEGE

Let’s talk about all the times I use my degree today. Ok, that was fun, moving on. Remember college? Move in with a stranger, who will obviously become your best friend, after a touch of drama, a dorm room bigger than your kitchen at home, classes like once a month, and classy parties where everyone accepts you immediately and you eventually become the hottest human on campus within a week. No? Not your experience? That must just be the Hollywood portrayal, I guess.

What about actual college? The real life version. College was amazing – on the weekends when there were millions of hours to work on my Monday assignments and I had zero cares about anything. I learned so much from my time there. Socially. Also academically, but that has yet to transfer very applicably to life. If we look past the price tag that could buy the entire Tesla S3X lineup, there were some very valuable takeaways:

Everything Has Strings Attached

Just because they give you plastic cups, t-shirts, food, USB chargers, stress toys, pens, etc. every day of the week doesn’t mean it’s free. That’s what your student fees are providing so you better take ALL of it to maximize your investment.

There Are Two Kinds of Smart

Social smart and book smart. One understands that you don’t start to get ready for the party until the party has started and the other arrives exactly on time. Neither is “correct”, but one gets invited back and one doesn’t.

FOMO AKA Networking

Every single event, officially sponsored or not, is an opportunity to network. Career Fair? Yes, duh. Governor’s Ball? Definitely. Class? Sure. Tailgating? Of course. A frat party? Oh, absolutely. Never say no and you’ll have a slightly better chance of landing a big boy / girl job after graduating.

Sleep is Overrated

Who has time to sleep when you have to learn an entire semester’s worth of material in one night? You just have to pass through the ‘I’m tired’ phase into the ‘just kidding, I can stay awake forever’ phase. No caffeine needed, just an airhorn and good friends.

There is a Right Way and a Wrong Way to Tailgate

If you forget any portion of the tailgate triangle you’re doing it wrong. If you don’t know what the tailgate triangle is, then you tailgate wrong for sure. Alcohol, Food, Games.

Everyone Has a Clique

College is the best time to find your people. Social smart, book smart, tailgater, tailgate attempter – doesn’t matter! Everyone has a clique and everyone’s clique is the best. Find what works for you.

Basic Survival Needs Are All Mental

If you’re an “adult” in college, why do we still have to ask to take a bathroom break? Guess I’ll just hold it and hope I don’t get a UTI. You want to breathe? That’s fine, it costs $3 per inhale. Oh, you’re thirsty because it’s a billion degrees outside and you’ve been standing in a stadium all day? Water is $45 a bottle 🙂

Weekend 24 Hours and Weekday 24 Hours are Not the Same

A day on the weekend supposedly has 24 hours, but somehow ends in about a quarter of the time as a weekday? Alright, Father Time, I see you, and I don’t appreciate what you’re doing here. If you could just flip that equation, that would be great.

If You’re Bored, You’re Doing it Wrong

There is never not something to do. Maybe you just need to look harder? Or, maybe whatever is happening doesn’t interest you? Well, that’s what friends and Netflix are for – make your own adventure.

Hollywood Is a Liar

My college experience was … very different … from how all the shows and movies made it seem. You actually have to go to class, and, even if you don’t, they still take your money, but kick you out. Nobody on TV has “class”, what is this BS?

Alright, jumping off my pedestal for now. If you know someone who would enjoy this and want to share it with them, that would seriously mean a lot to me. I’m so grateful to all the current readers and subscribers. If you want to get these in your inbox twice weekly don’t forget to subscribe. Thanks for reading!


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NO, I’M SORRY, LIFE DOESN’T GIVE OUT PARTICIPATION TROPHIES – GROW UP

Where did we go wrong? The next generation of “adults” have been raised to believe that everyone is a winner. Um … everyone is not a winner. There has to be a loser. That’s how this works. I understand that all of us aren’t into sports, but that’s no excuse not to brace your children for the reality that is life. If we all got what we wanted just for waking up and putting on clothes, though, the world would be chaos. Everyone would be in their dream job, married to their celebrity crush, and financially very well off.

For those of us born before 2000, we can remember a time when there was no gray zone. If you didn’t win, you lost. And you may have been sad, you may have cried, but you learned from that. You learned that you had to be better. Or you would not win. You would not get a trophy just for being there and taking the team picture.  No one would lie to you about your potential in that particular field. Life was good.

Then, at some point earlier this century, someone decided that their kid was not a loser. And no one could tell them that they were a loser. Parents started putting their children’s feelings in a perfect little bubble so they could never be sad. But then school started, and those kids had a social awakening and life, as they knew it, was over. Enter the participation trophy. Return the sheltered children to where they belong – in a fantasy. In my head, the participation trophy is something that will be heavily examined by the future humans of Earth. Much like our fascination with the caveman and their discovery of fire.

In my (limited) experience as an adult, here is how the real world works once one outgrows their youth, laid out in several fun and traumatizing scenarios:

  • Missed Project Deadline
    • You get in trouble because you let the team down!
    • Possibly fired, depending on the level of recurrence
  • Declined for a Promotion
    • Suck it up buttercup – they don’t care about your tears!
    • You will not be receiving one
  • Late to Work
    • You get in trouble because you let the team down!
    • Possibly fired, depending on the level of recurrence
  • Waiting in Line for the New iPhone, but they Run Out
    • Suck it up buttercup – they don’t care about your tears!
    • You will not be receiving one
  • Failure to Meet your Goals
    • You get in trouble because you let the team down!
    • Possibly fired, depending on the level of recurrence
  • Rejected by Your Crush
    • Suck it up buttercup – they don’t care about your tears!
    • You will not be dating them

In summary, you get in trouble, possibly fired, and have to suck it up because the world doesn’t care about your tears. I could go on, but I believe those get my point across. Participation does not teach lessons, it prevents important lessons from being learned. And outside of youth recreational competitions (sports, spelling bees, science fairs, chess tournaments, mini golf, the arcade down the street, etc.), it doesn’t really apply. Losing is a good thing! It’s an external factor giving immediate feedback that what we did did not work. Which leads to progress and change and, eventually, winning! For real, though, like in a way that you actually earned. And that is the most rewarding feeling ever.

Alright, jumping off my pedestal for now. If you know someone who actively promotes the “participation” game, tell them to stop it! Or, better yet, share this informative post with them so they can understand why they should stop it. The kids will thank you, but more importantly the world will thank you. Thanks for reading!


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NOT A CLOUD IN THE SKY, BETTER BRING AN UMBRELLA

Some things in life are certain:

  • The sun will come up tomorrow
  • The new Oreo flavors will continue to be both questionable, yet delicious
  • The radio will ruin your favorite song by playing it non-stop for 400 weeks in a row
  • The Detroit Lions won’t make the Super Bowl this year
  • And there is always a chance of rain

It’s kind of like an ironic miracle every time the weather decides to throw a little self-pity party and literally rain on our parade. If there is full sun and no clouds, where does the rain even come from? Angels? Maybe, but it seems to me like angels don’t get sad … that’s the point of heaven right? Is the sun crying? Are the satellites leaking? Is it the aliens? I have so so so many questions on how this is even possible.

Think about it for a second. Clouds carry moisture, so even a white cloud has some possibility of rain. That makes sense. But when there are no clouds, where, oh where, is the rain coming from? More importantly, is it sanitary? I have a lot of concerns on where this mysterious sky water could be falling from and most of them make me question my choice to just sit there and take it.

Johnny Nash had a catchy song, and maybe in his time rain only came with clouds. But more and more I’m finding that I can see clearly even while the rain is strong because it’s sunny. And otherwise beautiful outside. And there are no clouds. NONE! Have you also noticed that sunny rain is almost always invisible? So at first, you think it was just a rude bird who flew overhead and decided that was the time to turn on the sprinkler. Which makes you feel unclean, but you don’t want to say anything because that’s embarrassing – a bird just peed on you after all.

Then other people start making comments like ‘I think it’s raining’ or ‘I just felt a raindrop’ and that’s when the harsh truth starts to sink in. You, being unprepared, are sitting fully exposed outside in minimal clothing with no rain jacket, no umbrella, and a very expensive electronic device just waiting to show you how un-water resistant it is. And you start to have thoughts like:

  • Why do bad things happen to good people?
  • Why didn’t I purchase phone insurance?
  • How else can I break my phone so it’s covered under accidental damage and will be fixed for free?
  • Will standing under a tree keep me dry?
  • Can I get back to my car and wait it out / where is my car?
  • Did I not check the weather this morning? No, I did – it was just a LIAR! 0% chance of rain my a**
  • I left my sunroof open … where the hell is my car?!
  • Does this mean I don’t have to water my plants, though?
  • Why am I the only one that seems to be concerned about the rain?
  • Why do I even buy white t-shirts?

Which brings me back to the point of this post. You should always expect rain. Even when the weatherman lies (more on my thoughts about their job HERE), even when the weather app lies, even when you look out the window and see no clouds, and even when the sun is shining – bring an umbrella. Or a rain jacket. Or a poncho. Or a trash bag. Or remember where you parked your car. Basically, have your rain escape plan ready or you could be paying for a whole new cell phone. Which will in turn make you cry and the ants will be like ‘What the hell? It’s sunny outside, how is it raining?

Alright, jumping off my pedestal for now. If you, or someone you know, has been personally traumatized by sun rain, just know that you are not alone and together we will remember to pack a dry outfit … just in case. Thanks for reading!


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CONFIDENCE V. COCKINESS – THE STORY OF A FINE LINE

Everyone strives to be confident in life. The feeling where you are self-assured and nothing can get to you. How you dress, how you act, what you do, what you eat, how much you eat, how little you work out, what your hobbies are, who your friends are – everything. Is that person throwing the side-eye and definitely hard core judging you? You don’t care. You’re cool as a cucumber. Fly as a butterfly. Stinging like a bee. Swiping like a boss. It’s sexy. It’s healthy. It’s strong. It’s a good way to be successful … well, at least according to Hollywood.

Sometimes, though, very unfortunately, confidence crosses the line into an entirely different territory known as cockiness. Now, I understand how this is confusing to people. Both start with a ‘co’, both have 9 letters, both have 3 syllables, both have kind of similar letters, both inflate your ego to where you wake up and love seeing who’s staring back at you in the mirror, both kind of sound the if you say them quick enough for an extended period of time. 

As a blogger, I feel a need to educate the public on the symptoms, treatment, and prevention of cockiness to keep everyone in the happy, healthy, goal-attaining place that is confidence. Let’s start with the symptoms. How can you tell if someone has crossed the threshold into cockiness? Well, for starters, they’ll tell you all about it. How great they are, how beautiful they are, what they do for work, what they’ve got going for them, how everyone wants them, how the world simply doesn’t see their potential, etc. Then, they’ll walk away mid-convo because you aren’t worth their time anymore. Sound like someone you know? Is that someone you? Don’t worry, there are treatment options.

If you, or a loved one, or a random stranger who approached you, are experiencing the above symptoms, here are the (unofficial, and not scientifically, or medically, backed) treatment options. The most recommended one is to simply remove all sources of arrogance and conceitedness by deflating the ego. One can be creative here, but verbal cues that a cocky person is not who they think they are tend to be effective. However, you will need examples to back this up. ‘No, you don’t have a music deal about to come through because you have never once recorded anything.’ ‘I understand that everyone wants you, but somehow you blow up my phone every Thursday, Friday, and Saturday nights because you’re bored.’ ‘Oh, that makes sense, you were the greatest pole vaulter in school history. Except that the team cut you on the first day for not attending tryouts.’ Adjust to match your specific situation.

Another option is to encourage said person to help others. Volunteering, seeing the world in a new light, being helpful towards other human beings in a way that doesn’t involve talking about yourself, all can help soften a heart and open the eyes. Help someone to help yourself. If they are highly against doing some volunteer work or community service, Jesus is always a solid option as well.

If the above treatment options don’t work, you can pretend to get on their level and attempt to out-cocky them. A word of caution, though, once you reach that level for an extended period of time you could become confused on what’s happening to you and also turn into a meathead. Hopefully there are people who care about you and can bring you back to reality.

Finally, prevention. This sounds like something everyone should avoid so how can we prevent it in ourselves? Listen before speaking. Think before speaking. Try targeting what’s in your head at yourself and see if you receive it well, before speaking. Care about others. But, like, actually care. If someone is feeling some type of way, be there for them, listen to what they’re struggling with, and sympathize with that. All the while, not caring if it means you have to miss out on another party. Funny thing about preventing cockiness, is you’ll probably pick up that confidence along the way. You’ll trust yourself and the decisions you make. That is essentially the condensed Google definition so I don’t know what other evidence you need.

Alright, jumping off my pedestal for now. If you know someone who is experiencing the devastating symptoms of cockiness, pass this along and they can reach out if they don’t agree. If you yourself are concerned about falling into the black hole, follow the prevention methods and you’ll be golden. Thanks for reading!


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COMMUNICATION IS ROCKET SCIENCE

When did talking to people get so hard? Has it always been this way? Or is this another thing millennials have ruined? Seems like it used to be easier – back before cell phones, and online dating, and airplanes, and the Internet, and indoor plumbing, and sliced bread … you get it. I have some theories on why, which I know you are oh so curious to hear, so ready or not, here they come!

  1. The Grass is Always Greener – I don’t believe this has changed at all since the dawn of humanity. Everything seems so darn peachy for everyone else so maybe it just feels like they were better communicators when in reality they sucked too
  2. Simpler Times – maybe they were better communicators because some of the obstacles that exist today were so not a thing. Looking at you King Boo
  3. Adapt and Survive – hard to have bad communication when the only way you can do it is face to face or via a letter that takes weeks to arrive. It’s easy to hide behind a screen. Hard to avoid tough questions when you’re staring someone in the eyes
  4. Can’t Make Something From Nothing – maybe they just didn’t talk to each other. Like ever. Was that a thing? Socializing?

Regardless, whatever happened along the way, we have become absolutely awful at communicating. With co-workers. With friends. With enemies. With significant others. With family. With our pets. With ourselves. I hate to be the one to break it to you, but despite all the technological advancements, we still can’t read someone’s mind. What?! I know, I know, it seems strange given that our cars drive themselves and our watches can call people. We also can’t put thoughts into someone else’s mind. No matter how bad you want them to say or do something, ultimately they control their own thoughts and actions. How can this be?! That would be weird if that happened. Pretty sure that would take dictatorship to a whole new level. 

Ok, all-knowing TRP. How can we fix this verbal crisis?’ First of all, I’m flattered that you think of me as all-knowing. But in other shocking news, I also tend to suck at communicating. Despite my attempts to find the perfect way to approach awkward, stressful, or frustrating situations, I have come to the realization that they’re all unique. Which is a bit annoying, if I’m honest. Honesty does seem to be the one constant that works well, though! Just be real with people. It’s not that hard – I promise. Do you like someone? Tell them. Are you frustrated with a coworker? Talk it out. Wish your mom would stop telling everyone your business? Let her know!

But don’t be rude about it. There are two ways to be honest. One that lets the other person know how you feel / where you stand in a way that is productive and initiates conversation by acknowledging your part in the situation. The other lets someone know how you feel / where you stand, but in an aggressive way that comes off as blame and puts them in a defensive mode.

As much as communication sucks, it’s always going to be a part of life. So you better figure out how to do it in a way that doesn’t make everyone hate you. And please, please, don’t be that person who hides behind a screen and thinks that makes it alright to troll everyone and their mothers. No one likes that person. Finally, don’t run away from your hard conversations. Embrace them. Will it work out for you? Who knows – maybe, maybe not, but it will make you a better person. Hopefully. Don’t quote me on that.

Alright, jumping off my pedestal for now. If you know someone who would enjoy this and want to share it with them, that would seriously mean a lot to me. I’m so grateful to all the current readers and subscribers. If you want to get these in your inbox twice weekly don’t forget to subscribe. Thanks for reading!


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DEAR SUCCULENTS: IF I WANTED TO TAKE CARE OF SOMETHING, I WOULD GET A DOG

I have a confession to make…I have committed a terrible sin. Honestly, I’m embarrassed to tell you what happened, but I feel like we’re on that level now, you and me, so here goes nothing:

In an apartment, not too long ago, a tragic homicide happened. A human (let’s call them a restless professional) was living their best life, minding their own business, not giving a care in the world. Now this human had been gifted a succulent. Mind you, no one asked said human if they were prepared, or even if they wanted, to take on the burden of caring for another living thing. To commit to ensuring that this plant would be fed and loved. No, there was no asking just a bold statement followed by the heavy click of the ball and chain now trapping the free-spirited human into responsibility.

So now the human had an (unwanted) succulent. The human, tending to look for the best in any situation, thought: ‘Well, plants have lots of health benefits so maybe this will be good! Besides, worst case scenario, my roommate is growing a small, thriving, forest on our balcony so they can help me out.’ And so the human took the succulent and put it on the windowsill (because everyone knows that plants need sunlight. I mean, come on, the human isn’t that clueless!). There the succulent lived happily in the warm, direct sunlight for a day, then two, then three, then a week, then two weeks, then three weeks, etc.

One day (about a month later) the human came home from work to find that it was still light outside (apparently some people get home before dark every day, lucky duckies). Desperately wanting to enjoy the last rays of warm, direct, sunlight they went over to the window and basked in the Vitamin D. Feeling truly elated, and a bit invincible, the human glanced down at the windowsill and noticed a little pot with nothing inside it. Seemed strange that the roommate would pack a pot full of dirt and then put nothing in it…maybe they were finally losing their touch? Maybe it was the human’s turn to show the world that, although they still get nervous when having to actually TALK on the phone to make an appointment, and don’t buy groceries that either can’t be microwaved or aren’t immediately ready for consumption, in fact they were a responsible adult and their parents could stop worrying about having to clean out their basement for a make-shift bedroom.

Then reality hit. Like a ton of bricks strapped to the front of an 18-wheeler going 70MPH on the highway. That wasn’t the roommates pot! No, that was the succulent gifted to the human (who knows how long ago at this point). It was green and thriving when first handed over, but now it was so dead it looked like dirt. What does a responsible, caring, living their best life human do in this situation? Well the only thing that makes sense when seeing a dead plant of course – ran it to the sink and drowned it in water (because obviously it was thirsty or it wouldn’t have died).

Now, I would just like to point out that succulents, by nature, are supposed to need VERY little attention. Did I maybe neglect it for too long? Neglect is a strong word – I prefer the term forgot. I didn’t purposefully not water my succulent. In my mind, the succulent had been watered when it was given to me, therefore it would be a couple months before it was a thirsty hoe again. Turns out, I was thinking of a cactus. It also turns out that succulents and cacti are NOT one and the same (much to my disappointment).

There you have it! You’re supporting an (accidental) plant murderer. Well…actually, in a weird twist of fate, turns out my succulent is thirstier than I am because the drowning actually brought half of it back to life. I’m happy to report that the living half is doing great currently…and also that my roommate immediately took over its care.

Moral of the story is this, two things really:

  1. You can’t just be assuming that people are ready to take care of something. Chances are if they are only (barely) taking care of themselves it’s for a reason
  2. There needs to be better education around succulents – if I wanted to take care of something, I’d get a dog because they are 100,000,000 times more fun (but that’s for ANOTHER POST)
  3. (I lied, there are three morals – see you can’t be trusting me) Everyone and everyTHING gets thirsty at some point so please chill with the judgement

Alright, jumping off my pedestal for now. If you know someone who has mistakenly been entrusted with a succulent, or a fish, or another seemingly innocent living organism, please get them the help they need immediately. Thanks for reading!


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