I adore a good epiphany – when you’re plodding through life, doing something completely innocuous, then suddenly a moment captures your attention and a tiny little metaphorical light bulb begins blazing in your head. Once the buzz subsides, you are left with a little nugget of perfect knowledge that you either want to shout from the rooftops or squirrel away for safekeeping.
For me, these epiphanies present themselves in all forms – some are products I’ll never be the same without, some are words of wisdom, and some are just common sense. But I’ve been collecting epiphanies for thirty years, and I’ve decided it’s time to stop hoarding:
Secret 1: Chocolate and fruity sweets should not be permitted to mingle in the same candy dish.
Secret 2: Kill them with kindness. In college when I was living in Paris and mad at my boyfriend because he wouldn’t visit me, my mom told me to send him a care package. I tried to explain that this would really undermine the “you suck” message I was trying to send, but by the time all the French chocolates and souvenirs were popped in la poste the resentment had morphed into joy. These days, if you’d like to ruin my day there’s probably a bottle of wine in it for you.
Secret 3: Keep a pen, safety-pin, lip balm, and a twenty dollar bill in every purse, junk drawer, suit case, briefcase, and glove compartment.
Secret 4: Use Cascade Complete. I admit I’m more likely to be “green” when there’s something in it for me. So when I got a sample of these little detergent pellets with the challenge from P&G to not wash my dishes before washing my dishes I was elated. I haven’t rinsed a single dish or soaked a crusty casserole pan in almost a year. The best part? You can wait days before running the dishwasher – oh yes and you save oceans of water.
Secret 5: You can’t afford not to go to the dentist.
Secret 6: Know how to cheer yourself up. It’s unacceptably annoying when other people can’t read your mind and just “fix it” for you; so grab yourself a glass of wine, send yourself flowers, dance around naked to George Michael – or whatever it is you need to do – and let your loved ones off the hook for your happiness.
Secret 7: Invest in a heart rate monitor. That really high calorie burn on the treadmill is just trying to flatter you.
Secret 8: Nobody ever got fat from eating too many bananas. My gym likes to post motivational messages throughout the locker room to ensure you aren’t chasing your elliptical session with a Snickers bar. One recently explained that you would need to run a mile to negate the calories in a banana. I tore it town.
Secret 9: If you were supposed to answer the phone every time it rang, they wouldn’t have invented voicemail.
Secret 10: Understand sunk costs. Dear parents at Disneyland, if you’re getting cranky and your kids are tired, please just take them home and stop making them have fun. Your money isn’t prorated but your sanity is. This also applies to walking out of crappy movies, not finishing a meal at a restaurant, and throwing away those expensive shoes that make you bleed.
I showed you mine now you show me yours. What are your best life secrets?