Why It's Important To Be Your Own Best Friend

Why It's Important To Be Your Own Best Friend

Be the best friend for yourself that you would want someone to be for you.
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Something I have learned growing up is the life-shattering truth that no one else can make you happy but yourself. Other people including your spouse, partner, friend, parents, siblings, boyfriend, girlfriend or any family member will ever make you happy or whole. It is a bit of a depressing thought, but I believe right on the other side of this truth is something amazing.

It is not your job, hobbies, dreams, socioeconomic status or any other material object that will make you feel complete. What it all comes down to is you. None of these things will make anyone truly happy who has not come to terms with themselves.

I also want to be clear that this doesn’t have to do with if you have a lot of friends or only a select few, are married, single or are in a committed relationship. This entire concept still applies.

Becoming your own best friend isn’t a fluffy pep-talk, but essential to fulfilling your fullest potential. No matter who is coming and going in and out of your life the one person who always remains is yourself. The longest relationship you are going to have in life is the one you have with yourself. This is why it is so important to strengthen and develop the connection you have with yourself.

When you realize that you can’t count on anyone else for your own happiness it’s a revelation. From there you know you can’t rely on any other person or earthly possession, then it’s about investing in yourself and taking care of yourself.

This is how you become your own best friend by always looking out for yourself, doing what would be best for you and taking care of yourself. By taking the time and thought to learn about yourself, your fears, gifts, limitations, motivations etc. You will be able to develop a stronger sense of self. And when you have a stronger sense of self you can then more easily accept yourself rather than punish yourself. Also, you then can more easily decipher what it is you want out of life, your goals and pinpoint what makes you happy or unhappy.

Be the best friend for yourself that you would want someone to be for you. Rather than beating yourself up over a mistake, learn from it and move on. Praise yourself for your accomplishments. Realize your accomplishments are worth the same value despite whether you get praise from other people.

Learn to have fun alone and enjoy your own company. I know this one can be hard for some, but constantly thinking that we need someone else’s company to have fun is holding us back. When you can go out and enjoy an activity on your own, you just deepen yourself.

"The whole point of being alive is to evolve into the complete person you were intended to be,” Oprah Winfrey.

Don’t focus on the negative things about yourself when there are so many positive unique things about yourself that are amazing and you should realize that. Being your own best friend will help you develop into your true, best self.

Cover Image Credit: Tumblr

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An Open Letter to the Person Who Still Uses the "R Word"

Your negative associations are slowly poisoning the true meaning of an incredibly beautiful, exclusive word.
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What do you mean you didn't “mean it like that?" You said it.

People don't say things just for the hell of it. It has one definition. Merriam-Webster defines it as, "To be less advanced in mental, physical or social development than is usual for one's age."

So, when you were “retarded drunk" this past weekend, as you claim, were you diagnosed with a physical or mental disability?

When you called your friend “retarded," did you realize that you were actually falsely labeling them as handicapped?

Don't correct yourself with words like “stupid," “dumb," or “ignorant." when I call you out. Sharpen your vocabulary a little more and broaden your horizons, because I promise you that if people with disabilities could banish that word forever, they would.

Especially when people associate it with drunks, bad decisions, idiotic statements, their enemies and other meaningless issues. Oh trust me, they are way more than that.

I'm not quite sure if you have had your eyes opened as to what a disabled person is capable of, but let me go ahead and lay it out there for you. My best friend has Down Syndrome, and when I tell people that their initial reaction is, “Oh that is so nice of you! You are so selfless to hang out with her."

Well, thanks for the compliment, but she is a person. A living, breathing, normal girl who has feelings, friends, thousands of abilities, knowledge, and compassion out the wazoo.

She listens better than anyone I know, she gets more excited to see me than anyone I know, and she works harder at her hobbies, school, work, and sports than anyone I know. She attends a private school, is a member of the swim team, has won multiple events in the Special Olympics, is in the school choir, and could quite possibly be the most popular girl at her school!

So yes, I would love to take your compliment, but please realize that most people who are labeled as “disabled" are actually more “able" than normal people. I hang out with her because she is one of the people who has so effortlessly taught me simplicity, gratitude, strength, faith, passion, love, genuine happiness and so much more.

Speaking for the people who cannot defend themselves: choose a new word.

The trend has gone out of style, just like smoking cigarettes or not wearing your seat belt. It is poisonous, it is ignorant, and it is low class.

As I explained above, most people with disabilities are actually more capable than a normal human because of their advantageous ways of making peoples' days and unknowingly changing lives. Hang out with a handicapped person, even if it is just for a day. I can one hundred percent guarantee you will bite your tongue next time you go to use the term out of context.

Hopefully you at least think of my friend, who in my book is a hero, a champion and an overcomer. Don't use the “R Word". You are way too good for that. Stand up and correct someone today.

Cover Image Credit: Kaitlin Murray

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To Fix Taxes, We Have To Rethink 'Wealthy'

"Wealthy" doesn't mean the same for everyone.

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When discussing taxes today, so many politicians are quick to rush to the adage "tax the rich." Bernie Sanders has called for the rich to be taxed higher to pay for Medicare for All. Alexandria Ocasio-Cortez has called for a 70% tax on the wealthy.

However, all of these proposals are missing a key thing: a true definition of rich.

When thinking about what counts as rich, it is important to distinguish between the "working wealthy" and the "investment wealthy."

The working wealthy are the people in society that get paid highly because they have a high skill set and provide an extremely valuable service that they deserve just compensation for. This class is made up of professionals like lawyers, doctors, and CEOs. In addition, the working wealthy are characterized by another crucial aspect: over a long term calculation of their earned income over time, they don't come out as prosperous as their annual incomes would seem to suggest. This is because this set of the wealthy has to plunge into student debt for degrees that take years to acquire. These jobs generally also require a huge amount of time invested in lower-paying positions, apprenticeships, and internships before the big-money starts coming in.

On the other hand, the investment wealthy is completely different. These are the people that merely sit back and manipulate money without truly contributing to anything in society. A vast majority of this class is born into money and they use investments into stocks and bonds as well as tax loopholes to generate their money without actually contributing much to society as a whole.

What makes the investment wealthy so different from the working wealthy is their ability to use manipulative techniques to avoid paying taxes. While the working wealthy are rich, they do not have AS many resources or connections to manipulate tax laws the way that the investment wealthy can. The investment wealthy has access to overseas banking accounts to wash money though. The investment wealthy can afford lawyers to comb over tax laws and find loopholes for ridiculous prices. This is tax evasion that the working wealthy simply does not have access to.

That is why it is so incredibly important to make sure that we distinguish between the two when discussing tax policy. When we use blanket statements like "tax the rich," we forget the real reasons that the investment wealthy are able to pay such low taxes now. Imposing a larger marginal tax rate will only give them more incentive to move around taxes while squeezing the working wealthy even more.

Because of this, in our taxation discourse, we need to focus first on making sure people pay their taxes, to begin with. Things like a tax of Wall Street speculation, capital gains taxes, a closing of loopholes, and a simplification of the tax code. These things will have a marked improvement in making sure that the investment wealthy actually pays the taxes we already expect of them now. If we stick to the same message, the only thing we will be changing is the rate that the uber-wealthy are avoiding.

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