In the midst of our crazy lives, it's easy to lose sight of the good things. So often we tend to focus on the negative and get caught up in our own troubles when there is so much to look forward to. When I'm feeling down I try to remember what makes me happy. "I simply remember my favorite things, and then I don't feel so bad," like Fräulein Maria says in the "Sound of Music."
1. You're alive.
You are here and you are breathing, be grateful for that. Sometimes life gets rough, but it is better than the alternative. Life is so short, it would be a shame to waste it being unhappy.
2. People love you.
No matter how much you dislike yourself there are people in your life who love you. Friends and family are the ones who lift you up when you are feeling down. You should feel lucky that you have so many kind and loving people in your life.
3. You are unique.
There is no one on this earth who can replace you. You are one of a kind and shine light on everyone you meet in your own special way. Never forget how valuable you are.
Nothing is better than a long, warm hug. Hugs have a special power of making you feel loved and bringing a smile to your face. If you are ever feeling sad reach out to someone for a hug, it will leave you feeling much happier.
Music has the ability to change the way you feel. Songs can speak to you in a magical way. Put on your favorite song and just drown out the rest of the world.
6. Sunrises and sunsets.
There is nothing more beautiful than watching the sun rise and set. How could you be sad while watching something so magnificent? They are reminders that no matter what happens in life, it goes on. The sun will rise and set no matter what, each sunrise is a reminder that you can start fresh every day.
If you dream it, you can do it. You have so much potential waiting to unfold. Dream big and shoot for the stars. Never stop chasing your dreams, because they give you something to hold on to when times are tough.
8. You are beautiful.
Never forget that you are beautiful inside and out. Show the world your beautiful smile and keep your head held high. Be confident and embrace your beauty.
9. Everything is temporary.
Take comfort in the fact that this too shall pass and nothing lasts forever.
10. Happiness is way more fun than sadness.
Happy people enjoy life more. They shine and bring light into the world. Why be sad or angry when you can be radiant and positive? If you want to be happy, be. You deserve to be happy, never forget that.
Growing up, there's been one consistent man I can always count on, my father. In any aspect of my life, my dad has always been there, showing me unconditional love and respect every day. No matter what, I know that my dad will always be the most important man in my life for many reasons.
1. He has always been there.
Literally. From the day I was born until today, I have never not been able to count on my dad to be there for me, uplift me and be the best dad he can be.
2. He learned to adapt and suffer through girly trends to make me happy.
I'm sure when my dad was younger and pictured his future, he didn't think about the Barbie pretend pageants, dressing up as a princess, perfecting my pigtails and enduring other countless girly events. My dad never turned me down when I wanted to play a game, no matter what and was always willing to help me pick out cute outfits and do my hair before preschool.
3. He sends the cutest texts.
Random text messages since I have gotten my own cell phone have always come my way from my dad. Those randoms "I love you so much" and "I am so proud of you" never fail to make me smile, and I can always count on my dad for an adorable text message when I'm feeling down.
4. He taught me how to be brave.
When I needed to learn how to swim, he threw me in the pool. When I needed to learn how to ride a bike, he went alongside me and made sure I didn't fall too badly. When I needed to learn how to drive, he was there next to me, making sure I didn't crash.
5. He encourages me to best the best I can be.
My dad sees the best in me, no matter how much I fail. He's always there to support me and turn my failures into successes. He can sit on the phone with me for hours, talking future career stuff and listening to me lay out my future plans and goals. He wants the absolute best for me, and no is never an option, he is always willing to do whatever it takes to get me where I need to be.
6. He gets sentimental way too often, but it's cute.
Whether you're sitting down at the kitchen table, reminiscing about your childhood, or that one song comes on that your dad insists you will dance to together on your wedding day, your dad's emotions often come out in the cutest possible way, forever reminding you how loved you are.
7. He supports you, emotionally and financially.
Need to vent about a guy in your life that isn't treating you well? My dad is there. Need some extra cash to help fund spring break? He's there for that, too.
8. He shows me how I should be treated.
Yes, my dad treats me like a princess, and I don't expect every guy I meet to wait on me hand and foot, but I do expect respect, and that's exactly what my dad showed I deserve. From the way he loves, admires, and respects me, he shows me that there are guys out there who will one day come along and treat me like that. My dad always advises me to not put up with less than I deserve and assures me that the right guy will come along one day.
For these reasons and more, my dad will forever be my No. 1 man. I love you!
Advertisements have a long history of reflecting and influencing popular culture. As someone from one of the boroughs of New York City, I've always been surrounded by advertisements. So it is extremely obvious to me why representation in these advertisements matter. Commercials online and on television are no exception. As a gay man, I'd like to present you with ten commercials that make me feel a sense of pride.
1. Israeli Gays Get Distracted On The Beach
Israel is a safe haven for LGBTQ people living in the Middle East. While places like Saudi Arabia and Iran treat gay men horrifically by enforcing Sharia Law, Israel welcomes them with open arms. That open minded attitude was even more obvious with this commercial from 2006.
2. Pepsi Brings Out The Confidence In One Guy (With A Gay Twist)
This Pepsi ad from the UK has a comedic twist that will delight the viewer with the main character's confidence. I find the women's reaction to him passing by each of them even more humorous than his friend's reactions.
3. Doritos Gay Sauna Contest Entry That Could've Gayed Up The Super Bowl
This commercial was created as a contest entry where aspiring filmmakers could create commercials for Doritos. The winning entry would be aired during the Super Bowl and the filmmaker would win a cash prize. This viral smash didn't make it, however. It seemed unfair, as several straight-themed commercials feature tons of innuendo. Unfortunately, it seems as though gay male sexuality is still threatening to some.
4. Campbell's Soup Portrays The Adorable Gay Household We All Wish We Had
This Campbell's Soup commercial is a short and sweet depiction of two gay dads sharing a sweet moment with their son. If it proves anything, it's that gay households are just like any other.
5. Marriage Equality Gets An Endorsement From Tide
While marriage equality has been a source of debate over the years, the only thing wrong with this union was the attire chosen for it. A brilliant twist ending courtesy of Tide.
6. This Heinz Commercial Is A Gay New Yorker's Dream Come True
As a gay man and a New Yorker, this commercial makes me very happy. Affection between same sex couples hasn't always been something we could see on television. However, this Heinz commercial squashes all that.
7. A Sweet And Unexpected Coming Out At McDonald's
This McDonald's commercial from Taiwan features a twist ending that is heartfelt, not comedic. For anyone who has struggled coming out, this should hit you right in the feels!
8. Sister And Brother Fight Over The Hot Pool Boy... With Coca-Cola
A nice bottle of Coke is quite refreshing. Who knew it was the perfect ice-breaker to approach your crush? This ad features a brother and sister competing for the pool boy's attention. However, it seems like someone else beat them at their own game.
9. This IKEA Commercial Was A Historic Turning Point
This classic IKEA ad from 1994 was groundbreaking for gay representation in advertising. It would be remiss of me not to include this important commercial on the list.
10. What Happens When Your Dad Sets You Up On A Tinder Date?
It's always nice to have your parents acceptance. However, even for gay guys, parents can get a little too close for comfort. This Vote Savvy ad portrays just that. But hey, they mean well, right?
Whether comedic, heartfelt, or provocative, these ten commercials have done wonders for gay male representation in advertising. It also reflects the representation of gay men around the world. From Israel to Taiwan to the UK, these commercials reflect the growing acceptance around the gay community. As far as I'm concerned, that's something to be celebrated.