With the anniversary of the first episode of SpongeBob Squarepants on May 1st (1999), I have been thinking more about the show than usual. While I did not have cable when I was younger to open my eyes to the world under the sea, time has not been wasted catching up through the episodes posted online. In addition to the subtle adult humor present in the show, there are also several life lessons that can be learned from the absorbent, yellow, and porous sponge.
1. Life is all how you make it.
Smile. Laugh. The sun is shining (but maybe not always in the Midwest). You are the sole person in the determination of your attitude and what you get out of life. If you think an event is boring, the time will seem to go by slow and you will not enjoy yourself. However, if you go into everything with an open mind and a positive attitude, you may never want the event to end. Live everyday with a positive mindset so at the end of the day if some asks the generic “How are you/how was your day”, you can respond with “excellent”, and genuinely mean it.
2. Put your heart and soul into things to which you commit.
If you commit to something, commit to it. One person can leave more than just a footprint on the world, but its only possible for you to do this by taking full advantage of your skills (skills either given to you or worked for). Would Spongebob have been able to save Bikini Bottom from Plankton if he only prepared by weight lifting one teddy bear instead of his maximum of two? Always put your best foot forward and try your hardest in everything you do.
3. Maybe, and most important of all, have a pet.
The reason why Spongebob is able to stay partially sane is by his pet snail Gary. So, if possible, go to the nearest animal shelter and adopt a furry friend to keep you company. Boom. Now you have an instant friend who will unconditionally love you (however with the exception of all cats having unconditional love). Allergic? A pet rock never hurt anyone, just slap on some googly eyes.
4. Don’t snooze the alarm.
When have you ever seen Spongebob snooze his alarm to sleep in for longer instead of enjoying his day? Never, but don’t quote me on that, I’ve missed a couple episodes here and there. Don’t get me wrong, sometimes spending a morning in bed is needed for you AND the people around you to have an enjoyable day. But, whenever possible, turn off the alarm after the first ring and jump out of your bed to start your day the right way. Everyday is a bright, new day.
5. Do what you love.
Okay maybe if you equally love both being a fry cook and being a doctor, choose working as a doctor. But hey, if you really enjoy being a fry cook for the rest of your life no one is stopping you (and if you parents say no, slide their email my way and I’ll take care of that).
6. People who try to put you down do not define your worth.
Did Spongebob give up making his sea famous Krabby Patties when Bubble Bass tried to say he didn’t get any pickles on his sandwich? No, and neither should you. But instead of dealing with Bubble Bass, you will come across people who seem to have negative intentions towards your success. Never let that stop you on your road to success.
7. Always return (or at least visit) home.
No matter how far you travel, always return home to thank those who made you as great as you are. Although Spongebob enjoyed living with the jellyfish, he always managed to find his way back to Patrick, Gary, Mr. Krabs, and even Squidward. Return and give thanks to those who have shown you compassion, love, and endless amounts of support. Also, repay the favor by expressing that support system for others, even if it’s just by giving a stranger a smile.