For The Girl’s Guide to Absolutely Everything (Workman, new edition 2015), I asked hundreds of women what they know now that they wish they’d known when they graduated from college that would have spared them heartache, eased their transitions and made their life a heck of a lot easier in their 20s and 30s. Here’s one of their responses.
© Grace LaRosa
Name: Grace LaRosa
What do you do? I’m a user experience designer.
What do you know now that you wish you’d known earlier? I wish I’d known that not everything warrants a reaction, that loving someone doesn’t always mean that you (or they) are ready, and that it’s important to figure out how to be lonely without tearing yourself apart about it.
You will meet people that are ten thousand kinds of wonderful, but there will also be plenty who just aren’t good for you. You don’t ever have to feel bad for stepping away from the latter, and sometimes it takes a lot of guts to be able to do so.
But there are, there do exist, there will be those individuals who are your tried and true—the ones who don’t expect you to change to accommodate them, and who will love you through your brighter days and your awkward days and everything in between. If you haven’t found them yet, don’t give up: They do exist and they will find you someday.
In the meantime? Don’t compromise, and stop apologizing so damn much.
Previously: Helen Rosner reminded us, “you are not going to die alone and unemployed.”