The '90s gave us some amazing movies. More than that, many of the classic '90s films provided the generation with invaluable life lessons. Yes, I am serious. There are lessons to be learned from Clueless, Empire Records, and The Sandlot – especially The Sandlot! Heroes get remembered, legends never die! Ahem. But anyway. In the course of re-watching my favorite '90s movies, I discovered that I learned every lesson I needed to learn from these flicks. Don't worry. I got proof.
1. Sometimes Our Biggest Fears Aren't Actually Scary
Sometimes, in fact, you can worry and wonder about something so long, you build it up to be something so much bigger than it really is. You see a monster in your mind, but in reality, you're afraid of a big, friendly, drooling dog. Nothing is ever as scary as it seems in your mind.
2. Post-college Life is Pretty Much Horrible
Until you hit your 30s, anyway. I dreaded my 30s all through my 20s, but so far, my 30s are seventy-seven thousand times better than my post-college fall into adulthood.
3. You'll Probably Fall in Love with Your Bestie
And it probably – probably – won't end well. I mean, you may end up together forever, that's entirely possible, but there's no guarantee. Well, except for the fact that you'll at least harbor a crush on your bestie at some point.
4. After High School, the Nerds All Thrive and the Popular Kids All Flounder
Okay, that's probably a gross exaggeration, but on the average? Totally true. Facebook tells me as much every day. I shamefully admit that I laugh with glee every time. I am probably a bad person – but I'm thriving, baby!
5. Never Share Your High School Nickname with Anyone
Don't. They won't understand. These days, no one can understand how or why all my friends call me Beavis in high school. (Hint: it's because I liked Beavis and Butthead. A lot. Like a shameful lot.)
6. Making Sacrifices Can Set You Free
Especially when you make a sacrifice for someone you love. I think that's the true measure of how much you care about someone, actually – how much you're willing to sacrifice for them.
7. When Things Seem Really Hopeless, You Are Stronger than You Think
You can get through the hardest things. You won't feel that way when you're going through them, but you are so much stronger than you think.
8. The Jaded Can Learn to Be Happy
Even the cynical can discover something that gives them a reason to open up. Now excuse me. I need … I need to go watch Can't Hardly Wait again … because '90s Seth Green is my husband.
9. Sometimes, Our Own Creations Will Destroy Us
So follow your passions, always, but be realistic about them.
10. When Things Are Falling Apart, It's to Make Room for Something Better
You can always find a solution to your problems … even if it's a little slapstick. Just rely on your strength. The world may be falling apart around you, but you don't have to.
11. You Should Always, Always Follow Your Heart
It won't always end well, but that's okay. You can't learn to trust your instincts without making a mistake every so often.
12. No Matter How Weird You Are, Someone out There Understands You
Sadly, it probably won't be Johnny Depp, but somewhere out there, someone whose weirdness matches your weirdness is waiting for you.
13. Never Lose Your Self Respect, No Matter What
You are wonderful. Beautiful. Magnificent. Don't give anyone the power to tear you down. You're worth so much more than that.
14. You'll Always Be Able to Find Friends in the Most Unexpected Places
They really do pop up in places you'd never imagine. I met one of my best friends at a funeral.
15. The Best Way to Succeed is to Be Yourself, Always
Even if you're weird. Especially if you're weird, actually. Who else can be you if you're not you?
16. Rules Were Made to Be Broken
But there's still no crying in baseball, okay?