THIS POST MAY CONTAIN AFFILIATE LINKS. PLEASE READ MY DISCLOSURE FOR MORE INFO!
My mom and I have always been super close. She was (and still is!) one of my best friends, my gal pal, someone I would have girls nights with; someone with whom I would sit down, watch movies and eat kettle corn and candy until we were both so stuffed we couldn’t hardly move. One prominent memory that stands out in my mind is the times when we would wake up on Saturday morning, sleepily stumble into the living room, wrapped in blankets and carrying our coffee and pop-tarts, and turn on the TV to watch Sex and the City when it would come on E! TV.
We would sit on our blue, retro couch in front of the TV — her putting on her makeup for the day and me, nibbling on my hot fudge sundae toaster pastry (those were always my favorite flavor) — as both of us watched Carrie Bradshaw and her girlfriends strut up and down the streets of Manhattan, living their lives as strong, independent women. I think that might be why I grew to love the show so much; I would associate it with mornings like that, sitting with my mom on the couch, watching four fearless ladies take on the city while narrating all of their crazy adventures in the big city.
I grew to truly love the show, not only for the fashion and the fact that it was in Manhattan and allowed me to dream of the big city, but for the clever way it was written and narrated. It’s actually one of the big reasons why I came to love writing so much. I wanted to be just like Carrie Bradshaw, writing my thoughts and putting them out there for everyone to see. I wanted people to read what I wrote and feel something after they read it. I even wanted to live in New York City for a while, stuffing all my things in a tiny studio apartment and just enjoy being in a place where possibilities were able to become something real.
Fast forward through the years and through all of the changes life puts you through, and while I didn’t get to move to NYC and live in a studio apartment (let’s be honest, my stuff wouldn’t fit in a studio) and I don’t get to watch Carrie and the girls while sitting on the couch on Saturday morning with my mom, I still hold the show close to my heart and watch it frequently. Now yes, I realize it’s only a show and living life in NYC is probably a lot different than it was portrayed on the show; however, it still has always been a way for me to escape any troubles and go back to something I love and that feels familiar. There are quite a few lessons I’ve learned from watching Sex and the City for so many years (I’m sure if my friends are reading this, they are rolling their eyes because they’ve come to learn that all of my “advice” is actually based on a SatC episode 90% of the time) and since it’s helped me through so many decisions and times when I needed to know what to do, I wanted to share some of the helpful lessons with all of you.
1. Love yourself first – This is something I had to learn first hand. I was single for a while before Jordan and I started dating each other and during that time, I learned a lot about myself and what I wanted from a partner, from myself, from life. I was self-conscious about a lot of things and was tired of feeling like I needed validation from another person, whether it be from a boyfriend or from my friends or even my family. I wanted to be happy with the woman I was and stop worrying about this or that when it came to myself. I think when you come to realize that you, yourself are important and you have to take care of yourself before adding someone in the picture, you become a healthier and happier person. Have confidence in who you are as a person and be happy with yourself first, before you try to add another person to the equation.
2. Don’t take life too seriously – Between work, relationships, life, there are always going to be some times when you find yourself a little stressed. (Queen of anxiety over here, trust me I get it.) But it’s important to remember that life is full of ups and downs. Sometimes you might fall flat on your face (any fans out there know which episode I had in mind when I included that?? “The Real Me” S4 E2 if you wanna check it out 😉 but you have one of two options. You can either let yourself get down and dwell on the bad, or you can stand up taller than ever in your 5-inch stilettos, shrug off the stuff you can’t control, and flash a big smile. I promise that while it isn’t always easy, if you learn to do this, you will be so much happier in the long run.
3. Sometimes you’re Samantha, sometimes you’re Charlotte – Who says you can’t wear pearls and go to tea time with members of the art gallery before heading home, throwing on your sequin mini-dress that hugs your curves like there’s no tomorrow, strappy stilettos and heading out to the bar to drink martinis and smoke cigars?? NO ONE. THAT’S WHO. The thing I love about Samantha and Charlotte is that they are both so wildly different and have such differing beliefs, however they still manage to understand each other and even take advice and act like the other at some points. I think it just goes to show that no matter how different you are from someone, you can almost always find common ground and try to understand where they are coming from. Differences can be good, especially when they help us open our mind and look beyond that, which only we see. Bottom line: you don’t have to be the same way all the time. It’s okay to step outside of the norm and act a little different than you normally do.
4. Make no apologies for being yourself – There have been quite a few times in the past couple of years I’ve found myself apologizing to my friends and family just for simply being me. I apologize if I want to stay in after working a 10 hour day instead of going out. I apologize if I want to spend a night just with Jordan instead of hanging out in a group, since we don’t often get quality time together. I apologize for giving my honest thoughts on something if after doing so, I feel as if it’s an unpopular opinion. The thing that’s important to remember is that you have to be happy with yourself. Respect your opinions and stick by them. Carrie and the girls didn’t always agree or have the same opinions, but they were always honest with each other. I think it’s important to speak your mind, so long as you aren’t hurting anyone with what you say.
5. Friends don’t judge friends – Everyone finds themselves judging another from time to time. Even the squad in SatC tended to feel judgmental towards one another at some point… But one quote that has always stuck with me from the series was when Carrie tells Samantha something she did and asks her, “Don’t you want to judge me, just a little,” and Samantha replies with, “Not my style.” To me, that is what a true friend should do. We all have a tendency to judge people at some point; it just happens, whether we want it to or not. But it’s important to remember that no one is perfect. We all have things in our lives we wish we could have done differently, choices we wish we could go back and change, mistakes we’ve made along our paths. It’s natural to lean towards judging someone if they don’t handle a situation the same way you might, but to me that’s the beauty of life. How boring would it be if everyone made the same choices and lived the same kind of life? The beauty of having a friend, and being a friend, is that you always have someone there for you who you can talk to and who will be there for you, without fail and without judge.
6. When all else fails, sit back, and have a cocktail – At the end of the day, it’s important to realize that not everything is going to be perfect 100% of the time. Things happen. Sometimes work sucks and you feel stressed out, or you spill coffee on yourself when you’re wearing all white, or the guy you thought you had a great date with doesn’t call you back. Life can have a cruel sense of humor at times, but I believe there is power in learning to roll with the punches and take whatever life throws at you and throw it right back, ten times harder. It took me a long time to realize that I was so much stronger than I thought; I can do and handle so much more than I would have ever thought possible. I think once you realize this and truly learn to believe in yourself, you find yourself freer and happier than ever before. So just remember that you aren’t always going to have things go the way you initially thought they were supposed to… and that’s okay. Take what you can, and when life gets to be too much, simply sit back, and have a drink. 😉
Sex and the City has always been more than a show to me. It portrays strong women who are living their lives for themselves. I’m happy to have gotten to share some of my favorite life lessons from Sex and the City with all of you, and I hope you get a chance to watch the show, if you haven’t already, and fall in love with Carrie and the girls for yourself. ♡