Former Rouge18 intern Sara Veljic’s top-knot game is always on lock, she knows more about Nicki Minaj than you’ll ever hope to and she keeps it real. This NYU grad is smart, fun and fabulous so I asked her to share her Five Rules For Life. Here they are, in her words.
1. Things do happen for a reason. TRUST.
I was flipping through my agenda for a personal “year in review” and realized that the weekly quote from when I broke up with my last boyfriend happened to be: “Never regret. If it’s good, it’s wonderful. If it’s bad, it’s experience”-Victoria Holt. If it weren’t for said ex (or any of my past relationships), I wouldn’t have learned a dozen lessons on love and dating. And if it weren’t for my taking a Logic course last semester that had nothing to do with my major, I wouldn’t have met Julia, and wouldn’t even be penning posts for Rouge18! You don’t have to be a Pollyanna throughout life, and don’t get me wrong, sometimes it is just. plain. cruel., but seeing the value in situations helps you live more fully. We get so attached to ideas and things that we’re convinced will lead us to happiness or success, that when our plans don’t work out we end up devastated. The way I see it, you’re better off taking life as it’s going and appreciating it than seeing it as a series of wrong turns and what-ifs.
2. Take the people in your circle as they are.
Obviously, don’t hang out with people you absolutely hate. In fact, I’m a huge proponent of unfriending, unfollowing, and generally letting go of the annoying people (I just unfriended someone recently who went on a tirade against Nicki Minaj; I don’t need that kind of negative energy on my feed!). But recognize that there are some friends with whom you can share anything, some friends with whom you can do anything, and friends with whom your relationship is based on that once-every-few-months-double-kiss-catch-up-brunch. This applies to family members as well. Obviously, the truly toxic ones have to go, but if you find yourself in a tough spot and only a few people come out of the woodworks, that’s perfectly fine! The brunch dates are awaiting you once life returns to stasis. As social creatures, we’re amazing in our ability to be different versions of ourselves to different people, so it’s a lot easier to be a genuine person if you’re not trying to force your relationships with others past their limits. Some of your loved ones need advice on home decor, and some need you be by their side through thick and thin. You can’t provide fierce, devoted love and support for more than a handful of people, so don’t expect a whole team of cheer-you-uppers when spending a Saturday with your best friend is all you actually need to counter a bad week.
3. Be well in Mind, Body, Spirit.
Keeping yourself healthy is a lifelong practice. My mother has been buying organic since she moved to the states and is a surgeon who somehow didn’t let her gym membership go to waste even throughout a grueling residency, so health and wellness have always been top priorities for me. Sure, having killer makeup game one day or getting a perfect new dress can boost my mood, but when I’m in the groove of a beautiful daily ritual of morning tea and fruit, yoga, cooking myself dinner, and getting enough sleep, there’s no stopping me. Healthy mind and healthy body are essential to a healthy spirit. Get out of the mentality that good for you = tasteless, that a runner’s high is merely the jargon of muscled masochists, and that people who meditate or believe in a higher power are deluded. When you count your health amongst your blessings, you do yourself a world of good. Take care of yourself as needed (my preferences are baths, Sex and the City reruns for hours, and always having Trader Joe’s Swiss Milk Chocolate bars around), but also dig deeper. Allow room in your life for introspection. Perform whatever practices make you feel lighter. Don’t hate your body, but do give it the attention and care it deserves by eating well and staying active- it will lighten your spirit by alleviating some of the mental stresses bogging you down.
Read everything you can get your hands on. Essay collections, poetry, news articles, short stories, your favorite weekly publications, novels, and ask other people about what they’re reading too. If there’s a book on your shelf collecting dust, pick it up! If your friend can’t take her nose out of a book, get yourself a copy and find out why. Every day, no matter how busy, I make sure to read something. It’s not about being better than everyone else, it’s about self-betterment. The more you read up on reports, studies, and think pieces on current events, the more you break down the barrier between informative and entertaining. Reading starts conversations, helps you thread ideas together, improves your vocabulary and writing skills, and it’s the perfect way to spend a boring commute, lunch break, or 30 minute period before you go to sleep.
5. Leave room for wonder.
Sometimes the most peaceful, pleasant moments of awareness come from simply experiencing the world around you. I’m so glad I have family to visit in Scottsdale because of how mesmerizing the sky of the American southwest is. The sky is truly bigger and bluer than anywhere else I’ve ever seen before, and at night it’s splattered with dozens of gorgeous, twinkling stars. All it took for me to fall in love with it was five minutes of looking up in quiet appreciation. Stay humble and let yourself find pleasure in the little things, from the foam atop your cappuccinos to the babies that smile at you on train cars, and every dog you get to pet in between. Allow life to surprise you and allow yourself to be okay with not being in control of or knowing everything. And never, ever be too serious a person to laugh.
Thanks, Sara! Stay tuned for more Five Rules.
“Five Rules For Life” is a series on Rouge18 in which I ask others to share their five rules for life about anything and everything. You can learn a lot about a person by reading which five things govern their actions, no?