Everyone occasionally experiences times where our lives are in shambles. It feels like every aspect of who you are has simultaneously shut down, failed to function at the level to which you are accustomed: you failed a test in a class you thought was in the bag, your significant other dumped you when you thought everything was perfect, you run out of tampons at just the worst time. Even the most seemingly put-together, confident people find themselves down in the deepest dumps every once in a while.
Usually just metaphorically, but whatever, I won’t pretend to know your life.
The key to pulling oneself out of a schlump is to have a good coping method. There are the classics like leaning on family and friends, going for a walk, or drowning your feelings in ice cream – all good, all reliable…all old and played-out.
A master of the universe like yourself needs to shed these tired old clichés and cope in a way that accurately reflects your special snowflake-ness! Forget your human friends and your Ben&Jerry’s friends – get yourself back into fighting form in a way that’s instagram-worthy! In the words of Barney Stinson from How I Met Your Mother, don’t get sad, get awesome.
To do that, take your cues from pop culture. Plenty of our favorite fictional characters are our favorites precisely because of the weird ways they pull themselves out of their even weirder schlumps. Below are some of my favorites, and I intend to enact them just as soon as I encounter another crisis, which, given my penchant for overreaction, should be, like…tomorrow.
1. Rachel Green, Friends
Hello again, old friend. We’ll never forget you.
The strategy: get job as coffee waitress, move in with high school BFF
We hear Blue State is hiring. And hey, some of those baristas are pretty attractive! Don’t worry about rent, you should still be able to afford a spacious loft in Manhattan. Just cross your fingers you haven’t alienated any potentially useful BFFs from high school. Can’t help you there.
Works best when: you left your betrothed at the altar, lost father’s respect
This may not apply to many in the 18-22 category, so feel free to extend this strategy to any time you find yourself unexpectedly single (still counts if you’re just confused as to why you’ve been single for your entire Yale career). Throw in a dash of parental disappointment, and voila! You’ve got the makings for a killer comeback (but questionable haircuts along the way).
It’s okay, Rach. You made it. Just keep those fingers crossed for us.
2. Rory Gilmore, Gilmore Girls
Don’t act so surprised to be on this list, Rory. You fucked up sometimes too.
The strategy: steal a yacht, get arrested for grand-theft boating
This works best if you’re currently involved with someone who has access to a yacht club. If not, improvise! Try dating a member of the crew or sailing teams, that might still count for ‘grand-thef’ status.
Works best when: somebody important told you that you suck
This strategy is best employed when someone in a position of authority over you (who also may or may not have a strong bias against you for dating their son/daughter) tells you that you suck and you’ll never make it in your dream job. Take a semester off, wallow around your grandparents’ poolhouse for a while, and do nothing of relevance. But make sure you can get your life back together efficiently enough to still graduate on your original graduation date!
Still not really sure how you managed that one, Rory.
3. Frank Underwood, House of Cards
Frank’s “I’m mostly annoyed I’m not higher up on this list because I know I should be” face.
The strategy: systematically remove your enemies from power
With plenty of snarky asides to the camera, obviously.
Works best when: a powerful associate has reneged on a promise
Like if current YCC president Michael Herbert promised you a free silver pass to Toad’s for the year in exchange for your vote.
Still waiting, Herbert. Still waiting.
4. The Stark siblings, Game of Thrones
Glad you took a pic of these times, kids, because by the looks of it you don’t have more than one more episode of happiness left.
The strategy: go into hiding one way or another
May or may not require the death of one or both of your parents and/or older siblings beforehand.
Works best when: you’re recently orphaned/tired of being a political pawn
There are several strategies you could employ here, so pick whichever you like. Sansa Stark: become a dark, badass version of yourself. Arya Stark: become a nameless renegade, go on a killing spree. Bran Stark: meet some brand new friends, trust them that you have to go find a magical old tree man.
We recommend the one where you get a killer wardrobe upgrade, but whatever boats your float.
5. Dr. John H Watson, Sherlock
The strategy: get a new, weird roomie
Your original freshmen year roommate should do. Have you seen how they turned out?
Yeah, you know what we’re talking about.
Works best when: your PTSD is getting you down and/or you miss the war
Substitute “PTSD” for “annoyance at how busy you are” and “the war” for “finals” if need be.
6. Walter White, Breaking Bad
The strategy: become a drug lord
We hear Adderall is a booming business on campus.
So suit up and go fake a psychiatric disorder to get a prescription!
Works best when: you have cancer and a baby on the way
We hope that the CCEs have convinced you to use condoms by now, but if not, this might be the strategy for you to support your future progeny (Yale class of 2037, amirite??).
Make their trust fund contingent upon admission to Yale. No oops-baby of mine is going to Harvard!
7. Ted Mosby, How I Met Your Mother
Calm down Ted, you know it’s true.
The strategy: behave like you’re diagnosably insane
Get a butterfly tattoo, seduce your old fiancee away from her new wedding, plan a surprise move to Chicago without telling any of your closest friends, start a new business, buy a terrible house, and refuse to get over your closest friend even up until the day of her wedding to your other closest friend.
Yeah, see, looks pretty crazy when it’s all written out like that, huh?
Works best when: you’re unlucky in love
Which, if Yale PostSecret is to be believed, is all of you.
Seriously, y’all, this is a good answer for 90% of PostSecret posts