Last century’s gay men would certainly be super-jealous of us, thinking “What an era to live in!” – however, modern life is still no utopia for queer folk, or for any other group, for that matter.
Life is a constant struggle of having to choose between peace of mind and stressful activism, old-school, time-consuming encounters and fast, cold, digital meetings. It’s an era of moral dilemmas of whether to hire, date, and trust a machine or a human. It’s an era of our planet’s simultaneous demise and progress, making it seemingly impossibly difficult for one to lead a life of harmony, health, and happiness. Nevertheless, let’s get punny for a moment and state that we wouldn’t be gay if we weren’t at least trying to reach this gay state of mind, in the happy kind of way. So, here are some tips for a very gay and healthy lifestyle.
Self-Care. And Then Some More Self-Care.
This has been advised and repeated perhaps too many times, and in too many occasions, and to too many people, and it has become just another thing we say or post on social media as our response to those who dumped us, fired us, or oppressed us in any way. But do we really take this in? Self-care is more than just admiring ourselves in our selfie cameras and soaking in hot water colored with a bath bomb. It’s about exploring our passions and committing time to them. It’s about reading until we find the words that make us feel we’re understood. It’s about having brunch. It’s about taking a day off and getting ourselves a present with a long self-appreciation note. It’s about giving your best at what you do, but choosing to relieve your stress instead of merely putting up with it. Start doing yoga. Have two cups of green tea each morning. Take a focus pill, get your mind ready and eager for new victories. It’s the small things you can do for yourself that have no way of going wrong.
Purge the Negativity
Can we escape all the wrong things going on in the world? As much as we try to – not really. Wars happen, innocent people die, animals are mistreated, and forests are vanishing. We cannot conquer the dark side of the world, but we can take on a cleansing ritual of our own. Wake up believing you can change things, and I promise you will. Order a book from a fundraising website, feed a stray cat, or opt for a recycled paper notebook. Take a piece of paper from that notebook and brainstorm the things that make you frustrated, or bitter, or sad. Sort them in “Things Not to Worry About” and “Things to Change” sections. Keep that paper on your desk. Remind yourself daily to go back to self-care.
Curiosity wasn’t really the one who killed the cat. And it won’t kill you either. Strive to look for new things – not necessarily better, but simply new. Socialize with different people, go to different places, visit small towns around your city. Learn about yourself by learning about others. Google things that interest you. Take an online class. Follow your Great Perhaps, over Yeses and Noes. Pose as many questions as you may think of, and never give up on the answers. Leave your comfort zone, breathe some fresh air, try some exotically dangerous tastes. Don’t you ever feel like you’re stuck in one place and one life – you have a right to be different, feel different, and become different. I can’ t tell you if life is an endless spectrum of possibilities, but it sure is a long one.
Don’t we all want to live a long and lovely life? Stop waiting for things to happen and start being the gayest gay you can be, as cliché as it sounds.