8 Things John Green Taught Me

8 Things John Green Taught Me

Happy Birthday to my favorite YA author.
59
views

Happy Birthday John Green!

I am not at all embarrassed to say that I have read every single John Green book at least twice. People do roll their eyes at me when they see "The Fault in Our Stars" propped open in my lap, and if I had a penny for each time someone has told me he doesn't write "real books" I'd be rich enough to jump on a plane and congratulate him on his birthday in person.

Since there is no one willing to give me that kind of money, I will list eight lessons found in his books that are not just for Young Adults, but for everyone. Thank you, John Green, for telling us the following.

1. It is okay to ask for help.

None of the beloved protagonists from his books got their happy ending without a little help, sometimes from the most unexpected sources. John Green has never been one to ignore how important friendship is for human beings. Margo climbed up Q's window and blatantly asked for help. Colin had his best friend Hassan to help him get over Katherine XIX, and Augustus Waters actually turned to Peter Van Hauten when his words failed him. Through his writing, John Green reminds us that some times it is okay if our head is a mess, it's okay if we need someone to help us unravel our thoughts.

2. Yes, it hurts because it matters.

The young do not have a monopoly over suffering. Every single human being has been in pain once, we have all known loss in one way or another. And "that is the thing about pain. It demands to be felt." But that doesn't mean we should avoid all risks in order to run away from pain, it doesn't mean that even when we are afraid of saying something, or going somewhere, we should let that fear stop us. That is a lesson that is in every single John Green book, and that should be learned by every single one of us.

3. Other people are not medicine.

While Paper Towns focuses on destroying the Dream Girl trope, there is a very valuable lesson that is implied in this book: you do not get to use people (or your idea of who they are) to make yourself feel better. Humans have basic human rights, and those include the right to be whoever they want to be.

4. Do what makes you happy.

You don't have to be dying to follow Augustus Waters' advice. Do not, under any circumstances, deny yourself the simpler pleasures of existence. Go do what you enjoy! Live your life in a way that it will be meaningful and rewarding, make John Green proud!

5. "If you don't imagine, nothing ever happens at all."

Taking risks is important, and John Green knows it. Even if that means closing your eyes and planning the perfect escape from your usual life. Planning things is the first step towards actually doing things, you gotta fall in love with cities you've never been to and people you've never met. You have to grab the map (figuratively or literally) and map out that road trip you've been meaning to take.

6. Love is hard, but it's worth it.

"I'm in love with you, and I know that love is just a shout into the void, and that oblivion is inevitable, and that we're all doomed and that there will come a day when all our labor has been returned to dust, and I know the sun will swallow the only earth we'll ever have, and I am in love with you.”

Yes, in the end we are all dying. But that doesn't give us an excuse not to love –– ourselves, each other, our lives and our planet –– freely and passionately.

7. Looks are not all that matters.

8. “What is the point of being alive if you don't at least try to do something remarkable?”

Achieve things! Strive for more! Step outside of your comfort zone and change the world. John Green has many valuable lessons in his books that I think apply to anyone going through any stage of their lives, but this is the most important one of them. Whether you are young and with your whole life ahead of you, or you are a little bit older and you feel like you haven't quite tried to do something remarkable, then what are you even waiting for?

Happy Birthday, John Green. Don't forget to be awesome, and thank you for teaching us how to do the same.

Cover Image Credit: http://static.tumblr.com/1631b4e997321ec5685f416d74d022a8/xiifxkf/4wXn98nul/tumblr_static_bnce5uh8c68gwoogcsc0cg40s.jpg

Popular Right Now

To The Boy Who Will Love Me Next

If you can't understand these few things, leave before things get too involved
29796
views

To the boy that will love me next, I need you to know and understand things about me and my past. The things I have been though not only have shaped the person I’ve become, but also sometimes controls my life. In the past I’ve been used, abused, and taken for granted, and I want something real this time. The guys before you were just boys; they didn’t know how to treat me until it was too late. They didn’t understand how to love me, until I broke my own heart. Before you truly decide to love me I want you to understand these things.

When I tell you something, please listen.

I’m my own person, I want to be loved a certain way. If I ask you to come over and watch movies with me please do it, if I ask for you to leave me alone for a few hours because it’s a girl’s night please do it. I don’t just say things to hear my own voice, I say things to you because it’s important to my life and the way I want to be loved. I’m not a needy person when it comes to being loved and cared for, but I do ask for you to do the small things that I am say.

Forgive my past.

My past is not a pretty brick road, it is a highway that has a bunch of potholes and cracks in it. I have a lot of baggage, and most of it you won’t understand. But don’t let my past decided whether you want to love me or not. My past has helped form who I am today, but it does not define who I am. My past experiences might try and make an appearance every once in a while, but I will not go back to that person I once was, I will not return to all that hurt I once went though. When I say those things, I’m telling the complete and honest truth. I relive my past every day, somethings haunt me and somethings are good reminds. But for you to love me, I need you to accept my past, present and future.

I’m just another bro to the other guys.

I have always hung out with boys, I don’t fit in with the girl groups. I have 10 close girlfriends, but the majority of my friends are guy, but don’t let this scare you. If I wanted to be with one of my guy friends I would already be with him, and if you haven’t noticed I don’t want them because I’m with you. I will not lose my friendships with all my guy friends to be able to stay with you. I will not cut off ties because you don’t like my guy friends. I have lost too many buddies because of my ex-boyfriends and I promised myself I wouldn’t do that again. If you don’t like how many guy friends I have you can leave now. Don’t bother trying to date me if you can accept the fact I’m just another bro.

I might be a badass, but I actually have a big heart.

To a lot of people I come off to be a very crazy and wild girl. I will agree I can be crazy and wild, but I’m more than that. I’m independent, caring, responsible, understanding, forgiving, and so such more type of woman. Many people think that I’m a badass because I don’t take any negatively from anyone. Just like we learned when we were younger, “if you don’t have anything nice to say, don’t say it at all.” Most people can’t do that in today’s world, so I stick up for myself and my friends. I don’t care what anyone thinks about me, or their option on how I live my life. The only thing I care about is being able to make myself happy. Even though I’m an independent woman, understand that I do have a big heart. Honesty when I truly care for someone I will do just about anything they ask, but don’t take advantage of this. Once you take advantage of this part of me, all respect will be lost for you.

I’m hard to love.

Sometimes I want to be cuddle and get attention, and sometimes I don’t want you to talk to me for a couple hours. Sometimes I want you to take me out for a nice meal, but sometimes I want a home cooked meal. Every day is different for me, sometimes I change my mind every hour. My mood swings are terrible on certain days, and on those days you should probably just ignore me. I’m not easy to love, so you’ll either be willing to find a way to love me, or you’ll walk out like so many others have.

I’m scared.

I’m scared to love someone again. I’ve been hurt, heartbroken, and beat to the ground in my past relationships. I want to believe you are different, I want to hope things will truly work out, but every relationship has always ended up the same way. I’m scared to trust someone, put my whole heart into them, just to be left and heartbroken again. I sick and tired of putting my whole body and soul into someone for them to just leave when it is convenient for them. If you want to love me, understand it won’t be easy for me to love you back.

When “I’m done.”

When I say “I’m done” I honestly don’t mean that I’m done. When I say that it means I need and want you to fight for me, show me why you want to be with me. I need you to prove that I’m worth it and there’s no one else but me. If I was truly done, I would just walk away, and not come back. So if I ever tell you, “I’m done,” tell me all the reasons why I’m truly not done.

For the boy who will love me next, the work is cut out for you, you just have to be willing to do it. I’m not like other girls, I am my own person, and I will need to be treated as such. For the boy that will love me next, don’t bother with me unless you really want to be with me. I don’t have time to waste on you if you aren’t going to try and make something out of us. To the boy who will love me next, the last thing I would like to say is good luck, I have faith in you.

Cover Image Credit: Danielle Balint

Related Content

Connect with a generation
of new voices.

We are students, thinkers, influencers, and communities sharing our ideas with the world. Join our platform to create and discover content that actually matters to you.

Learn more Start Creating

Must-See Movies For Your Summer

Check out these movies in theaters soon!

95
views

I can't wait till these movies come out. Going to the movies during summer is a great escape from the heat, giving you a few hours in the air conditioning while enjoying a big tub of popcorn.

Here are a few movies to check out this summer when you want to cool down for a little while:

1. "The Lion King"

2. "Aladdin"

3. "The Hustle"

4. "Men in Black: International"

Related Content

Facebook Comments