Allow your past to define you. The mistakes you made and embarrassing situations you have been in should stay at the front of your mind. Remember how you’ve failed time and time before and harp on that every morning. Hold on to your worst fears and worst enemies and never let them go.
Never call anyone on the phone. Lock yourself away from hearing voices you miss. Think about how dumb your voice gets over the line and how it jumps octaves and sounds all squished. Don’t pick up calls and rarely return them.
Never do anything that makes you look stupid. Spend your time cultivating an appearance that doesn’t take a risk, and keep your options limited to only making choices that don’t offend anyone. Please people. Make this your life goal, no matter the cost. Don’t listen to music that’s not approved by everyone, don’t wear an outfit that has anything unusual. Stick to solids and boxy shapes. Give up on individuality.
Assume that everyone is talking about you behind your back and can’t stand you. Say that smiles from strangers are fake and question everyone’s motive. Refuse to believe that there are still good people left in the world and assume that every single person on this planet wants to take something away from you.
Don’t dance. Tell yourself you are uncoordinated. I don’t care how fun it looks- convince yourself that everyone will judge your moves and stare at your hips when they shake off-beat. You can maybe get away with tapping your feet once in a while, but I don’t advise it.
Strongly suggest that no one wants to spend time with you. Don’t text anyone to hang out first, because clearly if they wanted to, they would ask. Don’t reach out because that might make you needy, and what could be worse than that?
You have a choice on this, so pick one. Either “everything is my fault” or “nothing is my fault”. Repeat one until it becomes your personal mantra.
Forget about nature. Forget about anything bigger than you and your own life and your own brain. Do not gaze at mountains or swim in the ocean. Don’t cultivate anything that grows and don’t let yourself get swept up in a sunset.
Before the situation even begins, find everything negative about it. Make a pros and cons list, but always stack the cons. In fact, tear off the half that lists the pros and shred it. Believe any hope is wishful thinking.
Assume that showing emotions makes you weak and wage a war against being seen as weak. Never let yourself break down, ever.
Always be on. Always be entertaining people. Don’t rest or take a day for yourself. Be so in demand that you only operate for everyone else’s calendars.
You always need more stuff. Buy more clothing, get a better car, never be satisfied with what you own. Keep spending and spending as often as possible.
Don’t ask for help.
Don’t stop to pet a dog when you are walking. Don’t order dessert. Do not read the cards at Hallmark. Don’t let anyone kiss you under the stars.
Don’t try to create anything. Remind yourself that someone else has probably done it better than you already. Assume you have nothing new to offer. Doubt your creativity daily until you believe that you’re just “not a creative person”.
Assume that you have all the time in the world to improve your current situation. Stay in your deadbeat town or lame job or bad relationship because no one has handed you a new one yet. Distrust the unknown. Always assume that the next year of your life is going to be worse. Don’t make an effort.
Criticize your own appearance.
Never, I repeat, NEVER, be excited for anyone else. If someone else is successful, they are obviously the worst. If they make more money than you or are more attractive than you, hate them simply because of that fact. When your friends seem to be making the right choices and succeeding, allow jealousy to separate you. Don’t celebrate when someone else gets the job or gets engaged or takes a leap of faith. Never congratulate anyone.
Stop reading and writing and educating yourself. The less you know, the better. The less you know, the less you hurt for problems that are not your own. The less you know, the less you can be responsible for.
Anything you have not seen with your own eyes should not be taken as true. Never entertain the notion of God, unicorns, time travel, a woman president, or a soulmate.
Under no circumstances should you EVER recall memories of when you were a child and you dreamed so big. Don’t think about how you used to color outside the lines or sing at the top of your lungs in the bathtub or lay back in the grass in your backyard and make the cloud shapes into animals. Forget that you ever wore pretty dresses or and did cartwheels in the sun.
And most importantly, never commiserate with anyone else that is unhappy, because your time together might make you both just a little less miserable, and you don’t want to be another set of happy people, enjoying and encouraging, because the world has enough of those, don’t you think?