Thought Catalog

The Real Pain Of Hookup Culture Is Knowing That, In The End, You’re All Alone

Posted: 12 Nov 2016 07:15 PM PST


It’s been three days since you did the infamous walk of shame and now you're contemplating whether your impulsive decision was worth it.

It all started with a simple message, a subtle invitation to accompany someone on one of those cold rainy October nights. You knew coming in that you were signing up for a) a hook-up, b) a hook-up, and c) did I mention a hook up?

However, you deluded yourself into believing that "no, it's just cuddling!" But that was a lie because you were in an Uber at three a.m. trying to be in this stranger's arms.

You paused because you're also old enough to know that unless someone died, going to someone's house after midnight screamed: booty call.

But then again, it's cold and gross and raining, and cuddling never hurt anyone right?


Let me refresh this life lesson you actually gathered and consistently ignored from your habitual spiral down this road.

You're not cut for this casual hook-up life.

As far as I could remember, you were always the boy who believed in romance, you snuck in novels about love and read it under your blanket.

You're always the one who believed in goodness and that maybe, just maybe, your love story was taking too long to write because it would be grand and majestic. And well, cute.

You tried to embrace a sex positive attitude because, hey, you're educated in the arts. And your Sociology background would frown if you act like a total righteous prude.

However, you always end up in situations like this. Three days later and you still Google "how to act after a hook-up?"  Then you over think and go down the hypochondriac route because "you never know".

You wanted to stop caring, but you also wanted to dwell on the imaginary scenarios. Or possibilities.

Maybe what you had was the proverbial rare case and for some random twist of fate, you got lucky and you met your destiny. Fina-freaking-ly.

But you also realized you've never, ever, won the lottery. Or even a random draw. So a chance of winning the love of your life through hook-up was just ridiculous.

So you wrote an introspective letter to yourself to remind you to relax, to calm your tits, and to stop making the 'hoe you' happen. Because it's not going to happen, it never did.

In the end hook-ups hurt people. It's not deliberate. It's subtle.

You opened up to one random stranger for a night of 'fun'. You made them explore places only previous lovers touched.

You told them stories. You traced their body. You shared smiles.

And then it was over. The connection's gone.

The person didn't hurt you. It was the process of opening yourself up and shutting it down right away that hurt you.

You were hurt by that void in your chest the moment you realized that in the end, you're still alone.

So, boy, slow down. Or stop.

Perhaps, there's nothing wrong with waiting. Maybe, it's actually good to let the stars direct your fate.

And yes, say it, maybe it's not too bad to root for destiny. TC mark

How To Effectively Flirt With A Woman (Even If You’re Far From A 10)

Posted: 12 Nov 2016 06:15 PM PST


If you recall, a few months ago I emailed you about this great scene in Woody Allen's Movie Cafe Society, that was an awesome example of how to flirt with women.

The reason I love this clip is because the male character isn't your typical "movie hero, stud" and he pulls off flirting with BLAKE LIVELY masterfully.

He doesn't do it super smoothly. He isn't suave. He isn't overly attractive…

What he is though, is comfortable in asking for what he wants and even more comfortable with her not being open to his obvious attempts to flirt with her. Every time she kindly rejects his advances, he comes back even stronger and he does it with a smile on his face.

Wistia video thumbnail - Example of How To Flirt With Women-Cafe Specific

This attitude held by Mr. Flirt, is the perfect example of assertiveness and persistence.  It's also a great example of flirting done right.  What I see in this movie scene is a fun, playful verbal volley ball game.

Mr. Flirt serves by opening up conversation with Blake's character.  Blake's character slams that serve back into Mr. Flirts zone and instead of dropping it, defeated by her strength, he smiles and hits that ball right back with oomph.

And so the volley continues. It's fun, builds excitement for both the players and the spectators.  It's a damn good game to watch and awesome to be a part of.

This IS flirting. The fun volley back and forth that builds attraction, intrigue and curiosity.  It's a game that anyone can play with a little practice, confidence and the ability to be unshakable by a an attractive, female player.

It’s rare to see someone like Mr. Flirt in the media/movie's pulling off flirting so well. We typically see an attractive, suave lead character who's meant to be a dork, flirting with a girl.  These clips are annoying because in our minds we think "of course this guy can pull it off. Look at him."

But this clip is different and it's not the magic of Hollywood that makes me, a female spectator, attracted to Mr. Flirt. When watching this clip, I could feel Blake's attraction and excitement.  I was literally at the edge of my seat because I could imagine this happening to me and how I would feel in that moment.

I've had guys like Mr. Flirt, flirt with me like this and it's exciting.  What I was liked and was attracted to was that Mr. Flirt allowed the rejection to fly past him and didn't give up! He was not phased or rattled by her responses and was was totally charming. Being like this with women opens the door to possibilities and options.

I'm so glad that my client kept searching for this clip because I think it's a solid example of how to flirt with women and something that you can easily replicate as long as you don't let HER response, crush you.  Volley back with her and I promise you will get the response you are looking for. TC mark

You’ll Never Find The Right Person If You Change Yourself Because The Wrong One Hurt You

Posted: 12 Nov 2016 05:15 PM PST

Inma Ibáñez
Inma Ibáñez

You loved and you lost. You gave someone all that you had and you ended up heartbroken. I wish I could tell you that this won't happen. But we're human and love hurts and unfortunately, it will.

But the thing about love, is that it's beautiful, even through the pain. The thing about love is that it's always worth it, even if you end up broken in the end. The thing about love is that a hurting heart gives you a chance to rebuild, to begin again, to gather yourself and go back out there.

But what you need to remember is that you can't change who you are because of a broken heart, because someone hurt you, or because you gave the wrong person more than they deserved.

You cannot decide to shift your ways because of the wrong one, because that leaves you empty and cold. You cannot become someone different because of the wrong one, because that only gives them power while weakening your own spirit.

You cannot choose to close yourself off, to stop being vulnerable, to be bitter and guarded because of the wrong one, because that only hurts you.

You cannot decide to change because the wrong one hurt you, because that will keep you from finding the right one.

The right one won't ask you to change because he/she loves you for who you are. The right one won't need you to be different, won't need you to shift, won't need you to be so many things that you can't be because they want you.

The right one is looking for you—the real you—the you that is vulnerable and open, the you that lets people in and loves them fully and fearlessly, the you that doesn't let a broken heart change the person you've always been.

So please, don't let pain keep you from finding the love you deserve.

Don't change yourself for the wrong person, for the heartbreak, for the difficult moments of the past, because I promise it won't always hurt the way it does right now.

If you change for the wrong person, it'll keep you from finding the person who loves the way you are, the way you give, the way you are selfless and forgiving and thoughtful and kind.

Hold out for the person that sees all of that in you, and treasures it. Hold out for the one who won't break your heart. And don't let the world change you. You are beautiful, and you deserve beautiful love. TC mark

Remember That Your College Experience Is About More Than Just Graduating

Posted: 12 Nov 2016 04:15 PM PST


It was a typical Thursday morning as I woke up and felt the same emptiness feeling through my entire body. My head felt so heavy when I realized that the air was cold and the sky was not in the mood of showing the sun. I thought a decent sleep would take away all of my exhaustion and anxiety toward the life; but I was wrong. In this final year of college, I feel like a-dead-human-walking which is always making me feel like a failure; I am a Psychology student but I couldn't even identify myself. Which one of the theories of human being that I didn't comprehend completely? I can't even identify which one of the needs from Maslow's Hierarchy that I'm still lacking in.

The undeniable truth about life in the final year of college is everything seems so confusing yet exciting at the same time; it is when you realize that you are confronting the real life after college but you have to figure everything out at the same time. Everyone seems so busy making their own life plans and I am still here; contemplating my research paper variable. On top of that, my social media news feed was full of those pictures which shown people who were wearing the graduation suit, complete with some of those flower bouquets as well as the balloons in their hands, not to mention those happy faces which were reflecting freedom. Am I jealous? Yes, I am.

But the real question is, why should I get jealous?

Thinking back to all the years I had in college, I wasn't being taught just to graduate. The Professors and all the lessons they taught weren't even slightly told us about how to graduate; on how to get a perfect GPA or on how to graduate less than 4 years with a Cum Laude honor. I didn't spend my sleepless nights to finish all the reports due those deadlines just in order to know the perfect and the fastest way to graduate. The struggles that I went through for these approximately 4 years were not only for those flower bouquets and some Helium balloons. No, college is not about that few hours of receiving my diploma and taking some pictures with your graduation suit.

More often than not, students merely forget the essential part of being an Undergraduate student until they confront the real world; meanwhile, those 4 years of college are actually all about the simulation of life. College years were teaching me about the beautiful mess of life; about its art and its lesson as well. College is when our life is more than those theories we found from the textbooks; it is when we discovered that the real problems in our life were not about finding the relationship between two variables or explaining a situation based on theories.

I do believe that actually, college is all about the struggles, failures, lessons, and endless new experiences with its unique thrills in each moment. College is about that time when I cried in the first week of living alone and I had to figure out what to eat every night. It is about the struggles of finishing those never ending assignments and projects which were followed by the efforts of balancing my social life and the fun of being 20s. College is all about losing friends and getting a best friend, failing the scholarship selections and getting chances to join some organizations; college is all about losing yourself but finding what makes you feel alive instead.

College is about that excitement rush which is going through your veins when you will run a big project on your campus, it is the time when you discover that your true passion is not in your major or vice versa, and it is the time when you push yourself to the limit as you try to sign yourself as the head of a division or as the President of the Student Union. College is the time when you are able to unleash your potential of being the person who can inspire other youths.

College is the hard work of finishing your final project or research paper; it is all about the process of building your scientific framework and your critical thinking ability. It is about improving your assertiveness and communication skills as you try to always keep in touch with your colleagues and your lecturers; it is about regulating your emotions, keeping up your persistence towards hard works, and failing million times but you are still able to stand up straight.

Remember that you shouldn't always have to follow all the indicators of success according to the society, simply because actually, you define your own success indicators as a college student. Your college life is not a race; it's not about who will graduate faster than the others.

Ignore those social media news feeds and cherish each moment as you realize that college is not always about graduating, but it's about what you have got during those 4 years of struggles. Believe that someday, you will reach that point when you are finally graduating and it doesn't mean anything unless it is the sign that you are ready to facing the real struggles toward the real life.

Always remember that at the end of the day; hard work pays off. TC mark

What If It Wasn’t Over Between Us?

Posted: 12 Nov 2016 03:15 PM PST

Jason Brisoce
Jason Brisoce

What if you came back?

What if you had that second cup of coffee and realized you wanted someone to share it with?

What if you got tired of having something to say and no one to say it to, to care for, to wake up next to at 4am?

What if you showed up unannounced, in the crushing reality next month will bring, and I sunk into your arms?

What if the scent of yesterday was powerful enough to break down our walls and barriers?

What if the lessons learned in goodbye and heartbreak shine right through my fake smile, and you’re finally able to accept this?

What if we danced?

What if we loved?

What if you saw through my fears and took the time to walk me through this crazy leap of faith?

What if you allowed yourself to be humble, honest, weak, and the strength of two overcome the frailty of solitude?

What if I talked candidly about those moments and called you out on your comments and me on my failures? Would you care?

What if you’d had to tell me all those honest things in person, see my heartbreak and collapse and emptiness, instead of through the screen?

What if you gave us another shot after this honesty, fighting and tears, would we work? Would it still end the same?

What if I said I was leaving this town in the dust, would the finality change your mind?

What if we sat for more than 20 minutes, would time sit still with us and let love grow? TC mark

All This Distance Between Us, Yet My Heart Still Aches For You

Posted: 12 Nov 2016 02:15 PM PST



I used to believe that time
was running out.
That if we didn't have answers
That if you didn't say those words
I needed to hear
when I needed to hear them
that we would cease
to be anything
that change would swallow us whole
and spit us out in two different part of the world
And that we'd forget
who we once were.
In many ways, I was right.
You left
I ran
You didn't come back
And I watched sun set
on your memory.
But now I understand
that time never mattered
with love—with us.
You can't erase
a person's touch from your memory
or stop your heart from beating
at the mention of a name.
It was never about the hours
the months
the years
that would nestle between us.
With you and I,
time never stood a chance.


Is it easy for you to pretend?
To tell yourself that I'll always be
just out of reach
so you don't have to extend
your arms, your heart
risk being broken
Is it easy for you to imagine?
That I am somewhere else
someone else's
just a someone
that you loved
and lost.
Is it easy for you to simply say 'she's gone?'
Than to see how far
your legs will take you.
Are you afraid
of what this, what us
could be?
Because I am too.
It's easier for me to believe
That you're the one who's given up
than to acknowledge
I'm the one who left
And I've been missing you
ever since.


You sent me a song
like something out of a movie, cliché
and absolutely perfect.
Just the lyrics
and a note
It makes me think of you.
And here I am
wrestling with what words
I could possibly write
to respond to the man
I love(d)
that would erase this distance.
But all I can do is listen
to those first opening notes
a song that already tugged at my heart
now heavy with new meaning.
I breathe in this salt-water air
and sing along with the chorus
as loud as I can.
I hope the wind carries this melody
to wherever you are.
I hope you know my heart
never stopped singing
for you. TC mark

Anxiety Is A Mountain You Can Climb, No Matter How Daunting It May Seem

Posted: 12 Nov 2016 01:45 PM PST


Anxiety — it begins first as a blizzard in your belly, and even the simplest of things seem to rise like mountains before you. The weight of climbing out of bed crashes down on your chest until you feel you cannot move or breathe and troubled thoughts pelt down at you like hailstones that never seem to subside or relent. 

You smile through grit teeth to hide the thick black smog of sadness billowing from the crippling inferno inside you that you did not have the tears left to put out, while friends and family wrap their arms around you and tell you, "Hey, there is nothing to worry about."

And isn't that what sickens you most. By all measures of logic, you know in your heart they are right. It is a beautiful world and a beautiful life and, relatively speaking, all of your troubles and fears appear petty and small next to what others face day in and day out in other less fortunate parts of the world.

So why does not seem to matter? Why do you still feel so stuck and afraid?

Because anxiety does not listen to logic. Because anxiety is an urgent, deafening thing and no matter the number of reasons you have to remain happy or positive, when it is present, you can hear nothing else.

You feel you cannot bring yourself to move because there is too much ahead of you and there is too much ahead of you because you cannot bring yourself to move. It is a perfect storm — a vicious cycle of fear feeding inaction and inaction feeding fear — a self-made prison that you alone carry the key to, but lack the courage to use. 

But as with all things in life, there is always hope. Over the years and through experience I have come to believe that anxiety has a weakness and that weakness is momentum.

You take one small step, and then another. You compartmentalize your life down into manageable chunks and check them off one after another. And though at first the ground below your feet may seem unstable or jagged, and every so often you will lose footing and progress, with every lunge forward you will begin to feel the strength seep back into your bones and new purpose flow wild and free through your veins. With your every decision to take action in your life, the slant of your path ahead will begin to flatten out until it no longer feels like you are scrambling up the sheer face of a cliff, but instead, moving softly and easily across smooth, solid ground. 

The fact of it is, for sufferers of anxiety, there will always be more mountains to climb – a seemingly infinite number that can often span the length of a life – but trust in this: you will climb them over and over because you have to. You will climb them because there is nothing here for you down at the foot of the mountain. You will climb them because the view at the summit is beautiful. TC mark

10 Reasons Why You Should Unfollow The Guy You ‘Almost’ Dated

Posted: 12 Nov 2016 01:15 PM PST

 Leo Hidalgo
Leo Hidalgo

1. He's not really a 'friend' or an 'ex' so you could keep him. He pretty much made no effort to be someone worth remembering so why don't you just make it easier for him and cut all ties with him.

2. His 'likes' don't mean anything. He simply just double taps on a screen, that's all he has to do to make you think of him, especially if you two haven't spoken in a while. Don't give him the chance to mess with your head again.

3. It will hurt you when you see pics of him with other women. Even if you never officially dated but you'll always wonder if he's officially dating her or if she is the woman he picked over you. It's not worth the pain — he's not worth the pain.

4. You won’t be tempted to post quotes or memes that could potentially be about him. It helps you move on from playing these games and from giving him the satisfaction that he’s still on your mind.

5. It will make you question yourself. When you see him posting a loving family picture or pictures with his friends, you'll wonder why he never showed you that side of him and you'll begin to think that you failed to bring the good in him. The truth is, he chose to be that person with you so it's not your fault.

6. You will not be able to stalk him. Since it's in our nature to check up on our exes and anyone we dated to see how they're doing, stalking doesn't really help you forget them or move on. Especially with a guy you almost dated because you will always think that there's still more to your story.

7. If he didn't give you closure, this will be yours. A guy you almost dated probably didn't have the decency to give you any kind of closure, so this could be your way of saying goodbye and fuck you.

8. You won't feel the need to impress him. If you want to keep him so he can see how well you're doing without him and feel sorry for letting you go, you're only fooling yourself. Usually a guy knows a girl's worth or value without social media validating it. If he failed to see that before, he'll fail to see it now.

9. If he wants you back, he needs to work harder. If he really cares about you and doesn’t want you completely out of his life, then he should communicate that to you and make an effort to make things right again.

10. Because he honestly doesn't deserve to occupy any space in your life, your contacts or your followers. Almost is another word for nothing.  TC mark

You Were The Storm I Had To Weather

Posted: 12 Nov 2016 12:15 PM PST


You are like a storm.

You came into my life and washed over me like torrential downpour in the middle of a barren desert. You quenched my thirst. You soaked me completely in your raindrops. Marked me as yours.

Your strong winds swept me up into you. Encompassing me completely, I belonged to you. I couldn’t get away, no matter how greatly I struggled. You wrapped me up so tightly, I couldn’t breathe.

You brought with you so much gloom. You stole the light from my life and kept me hidden beneath your murky storm clouds. You veiled me in your shadows.

We reach the eye of your storm and I could feel your love. I could feel the calm amidst the chaos. The quiet, just the two of us. I fell in love with your gentle waves in these moments. Unfortunately the eye is not the end, just a brief pause.

And then, suddenly, your voice rattled through my bones like thunder, and like lightning it cracks my soul. Your footsteps felt as though they shook the ground beneath my feet.

Your hailstorm left me bruised and beaten. A whirlwind of painful welts, my once porcelain skin was now stained black and blue. My once pure and kind spirit was now shattered and broken into a million tiny, unrecognizable pieces.

And in a blink of an eye, you were gone.

All I am left with now is the rubble and dust that reminds me that you once belonged here. You linger along in the torn stitches that once held me together. My scars are the only tangible thing I have left of you.

Just like a storm, you ran ramped through me and left without warning. I must seek shelter. I must learn to love without being destroyed.

In the aftermath, I am learning to rebuild myself, my life, my soul, my spirit. TC mark

15 Micro-Accomplishments To Be Majorly Proud Of Yourself For This Year

Posted: 12 Nov 2016 11:45 AM PST


With just a few weeks left of the year, it's good to pause and reflect on all you've done. The holidays can be a depressing season, and while it's easy to get caught up with what you have and haven't checked off your bucket list, I guarantee you, you're doing a lot better than you think if any of these 15 things apply to you.

1. You don't recognize the person you were a year ago because you have evolved and grown so much; at the same time, you understand why you are who you are today, and how your past shaped you into becoming that person.

2. You've managed to break free of old things that were holding you back (ie. an ex, a soul-drenching job, excuses not to go to the gym, etc.).

3. You've made new soul connections. You know these glorious humans have arrived at this point in your life to help you become the person you were meant to be, and vice-versa. These people are special. These people are here to stay.

4. You somehow came to the conclusion that you are the only one blocking the way to your happiness, and you now actively walk on the path towards that happiness, which makes you freer than you ever were before.

5. You've sampled new hobbies, interests, and stepped out of your comfort zone, whether that's you trying a food that once made you cringe or wandering through a new city alone yet unafraid.

6. You've hit rock bottom. The number of times you've fallen to your lowest of lows is insignificant, because you climbed your way out of it. It doesn't matter how long it took for you to get out of that funk; all that matters is you did.

7. You found out whom you could truly rely on — the ones you can count on, in good times and in bad.

8. You asked for help. You know now that asking does not equate to weakness, which is something you couldn't comprehend before. In fact, it's only the brave who seek help when they know they can't do it alone.

9. Similarly to learning how to ask for help, you also learned how to say no. And you don't feel guilty about it.

10. Loving oneself seems like the easiest thing in the world… but it's not. Still, you chose to love yourself, appreciate the beauty that is your mind and body, and set out snippets of your week to self-care and self-love. That is something to be proud of.

11. You cherish everyday moments and discovered inner peace. Whether that's not scrolling through your Instagram feed the entire time you're out at dinner, or realizing how precious it is to fully embrace living in the moment, you learned the power of presence and how to be present.

12. You realized you are only one of billions living in this world, and you've come one step closer to finding your purpose and how you, as one tiny individual, can personally contribute to society.

13. You took your health a little more seriously. Even if that's just drinking more water, taking daily vitamins, cutting back on fast food or walking up the stairs instead of taking the escalator, you made little improvements to become a healthier you.

14. You made the effort to actually connect with people in real life by calling instead of texting, spontaneously telling your friends how much they mean to you, and making sure technology isn't hindering true connection with those you care about.

15. Lastly, you became a more positive person. Hope is an extremely powerful tool, and you earnestly look forward to your future and what's to come. TC mark