There are two pieces of advice I would like to give. One, learn patience. And two, remember your self-worth. I say this especially for those of you who don’t have it all together or haven’t reached all your milestones, for those who feel like less of a person because of something you did or did not do.
Patience and self-worth go hand in hand on many occasions. It means being patient with yourself even if you embarrassed yourself in front of someone or gained 10 pounds or got rejected after the first date. It’s remembering that even though something isn’t going as planned that you’re not a fuck up, and there is always, and I mean always, time to improve. It’s giving yourself more chances, but certainly not taking advantage of yourself. It’s not doing something wrong over and over and hoping it’s right because it’s with another person.
It’s like having sex, hoping it will make that person like you back. Sex won’t make someone like you back. Neither does impatience or low self-worth since that’s called, like I have been called many times, desperate. And if you are desperate, don’t deny it; change it. Don’t sell yourself short and settle on trying to please someone who isn’t nice to you, like someone who says you’re too fat to be pretty or the wrong race to be attractive. Don’t let someone continue to sit in your bed if that someone has the actual audacity to say, “I don’t know why I asked you to have sex since you’re really not my type at all. I like petite girls. And Asian girls. Quiet. Like an anime character, you know?”
An important lesson in gaining patience and self-love is not coddling yourself, but at the same time, not being an asshole to yourself. This is certainly difficult to do if you sway between mottos like “treat yo’ self” and “deprive yourself.” Patience and self-awareness is learning what foods you know will make you upset after eating them and not eating them. And no, it can’t be reversed if you throw it up.
Remembering self-worth is allowing yourself to get a B when you know you could have gotten an A, and it’s learning the lesson to put a little more effort into a class next semester instead of worrying about someone or something that isn’t as important as you are. And trust me, you’re very important.
Patience and self-worth is remembering to study an extra five minutes because you know you’re smart when you try. Be patient with other people when you need to be, and find that balance of saying what you believe in without stepping on too many toes, since there’s self-love in being a nice person.
Especially if someone or something is changing, step back and analyze why you’re worrying and if it’s even something to worry about — and if confrontation is necessary, don’t waste your time trying to think of what someone else is thinking. You only know what you’re thinking.
Lastly, and most annoyingly, be patient and remember your self-worth, especially when time is the only thing that will make you feel better. In most cases, something will hurt less or at least hurt less often, as time passes. It might not heal completely, but if you accept distractions like a new favorite show or playing board games with friends, it will get easier.
Elizabeth Manning is a senior majoring in English.