the other day, someone asked me for relationship advice

And I said, “Calm down.”

Perhaps, this is the best advice I could give anyone. If I were to write yet another open letter to my younger self, I’d tell her to calm down. To breathe.

Most of us go on with life trying to figure out the solution to the problem at hand. Half of the time, it drives us crazy; and the other half? It keeps us on the edge of our seat, waiting for the next bad thing to happen.

I find the easy patches of life harder to deal with. I spent most of my life waiting for the other shoe to drop: when I’m happy, something wrong must be going down tomorrow. When something good happens, I always wait for the inevitable fallout, the eventual pain that comes after feeling so good for a long time. I was never comfortable being comfortable; and it’s mostly because I spent all my life knowing which of which is the good thing and which of which is the bad thing.

The easy patches of life are the ones that mostly passed me by and that’s because I was so busy trying to brace myself for the impact. It’s not even about being an overthinker or being cautious because I’m never those two things. It’s mostly because of habit. When you grew up seeing the ups and downs of people around you, it’s easy to think it’s gonna happen to you, too.

One of my biggest faults (and believe me, I have many) is that I’m both smart and idealistic–a terrible combination of truth and fantasy. I hope for a happy conclusion but I’ve always known for a fact there isn’t one. But that’s until my most recent breakup, that’s until I was forced to sit calmly still, waiting for all my bruises to heal. They say time heals all wounds but you know what I’ve learned?

It doesn’t.

Time doesn’t heal all the wounds that fucked you up. It never does.

But time does help.

What heals the wounds is giving it the chance to heal; giving yourself the chance to breathe.

You cannot live your whole life waiting for something bad to happen. You cannot enter a fresh relationship thinking about how it’s gonna end. You cannot jump into a new career thinking about how to get out. Who the hell starts something only to think about ending it?


Stay still.


Give yourself a chance to be alone with your thoughts. Give yourself a chance to enjoy the company you’re with. Give yourself a chance to feel that happiness for much longer. Give yourself a chance to be comfortable with being comfortable.

Let the story unfold the way it’s supposed to unfold. Life has a weird way of working out for everybody, anyway. So why not stay still?

Tell yourself to calm down because you know what I’ve figured out? That it’s gonna be okay; that at the right place and time, it’s gonna get better.

Whatever bad conclusion you have for the story you’re currently telling, save it for later. Maybe, you’re right. Maybe, you’ll break up. Maybe, this is the wrong path. Maybe, they’ll hurt you. Maybe, you’ll hurt them.

But that’s not what matters now.

You’re okay here, right now. Safe. You’re probably happy.

And it’s okay to be okay.

Calm down.

Be here.


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