If anyone has some insight to offer on the eternal questions of life and love, it’s Amanda Palmer. The singer/composer/musician is a theatrical goddess, weaving fantastical tales in her lyrics and creating surreal spectacles on stage. She has clearly given a lot of thought to life and death, which is illustrated in The Killing Type (my favorite song of hers) where she chronicles her true story of mercy-killing a dying bird and how the experience of taking a life affected and wounded her. Not one to shy away from nudity and expressing herself through her body, Palmer is a woman who truly understands the preciousness of each and every body and soul.
When a college student asked Palmer for advice on “how to love oneself physically and mentally,” the rockstar shared ten simple tricks for always remaining mindful. Her advice ranges from the simple things like staying well-hydrated and having good oral hygiene to the profound: “Remember every so often that you’re going to die. Sounds weird, but it helps.”
Her words are tinged with a Buddhist sensibility; she suggests meditation and mindfulness practice and evokes the idea of emptiness (i.e. accepting the world in its evolving, impermanent state) when she writes, “Don’t take shit too seriously. Everything changes.”
Palmer recommends - perhaps above all else - really connecting with oneself and those who add joy to the world. She suggests surrounding oneself with people who aren’t negative and won't judge. All the chatter can get in the way, too. She suggests unplugging every once in a while, avoiding TV (especially advertisements) and truly connecting to others in intimate, personal ways: “Put your phone in a drawer the next time you’re hanging out with someone. It feels amazing.” Instead of looking at others as a means for personal gain, Palmer urges fans and readers to approach the world with kindness and generosity: “Wake up [...] and ask: ‘how can I be helpful?’” Amen to that!
Life is tenuous and ever-evolving, so while we’re here, let’s crank up some Amanda. What’s the best piece of life advice you’ve ever received? Let us know in the comments.
Thanks to Explore
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