Image from Pexels.

Image from Pexels.

YOLO is taking over our yearbook quotes, Facebook statuses, tweets, and mottos, and ultimately stands as the number one reason for eating five scoops of rocky road ice cream layered in whipped cream and chocolate syrup. Or, to each their own.

YOLO, an acronym for You Only Live Once, was coined from “The Motto,” a single by the rapper Drake. It’s supposed to make people realize that they have one life and that they should try their best to enjoy it, even if it means taking risks or making out-of-the-ordinary decisions.

As human beings, we are inspired and a little scared by something like this. We seek fulfillment, but also reassurance that we’re doing something right with our lives. We don’t want those second thoughts that sneak up on us, asking if we made the right decision, if we are okay with the present, and if we are going to regret this later. While we seek thrills and adventures, we also seem to need a reason to do things we’ve just felt like doing.  Sometimes saying, “Because I feel like it,” isn’t the best explanation to ourselves, but saying something oh-so-profound and deep like, “Because I only live once,” comes off as a bit more convincing to your friends, parents, and, most importantly, yourself.

However, it can come out a little too convincing. YOLO is more so used to excuse reckless behaviors, and accidents. #YOLO has been a popular trend on on Twitter hundreds of times, and anybody who has clicked on the hashtag would see an endless stream of tweets and pictures of people either using the motto as motivation, or using it as a reason to do something that isn’t worth it. At all. 

YOLO  means you should try to enjoy your one and only life, and that you should realize there are no second chances or do-overs – so don’t fill it with useless, reckless things that aren’t memorable! YOLO is a reminder of what you currently have, and that you should take your life into your own hands. Use YOLO for a moment that you truly only live once for. College acceptances? Graduations? Awards? Maybe even just reconnecting with someone you haven’t spoken to for so long? Relaxing after working so hard? These are more actual YOLO moments than speeding, stealing something, or throwing a sandwich across class. These are the moments where we feel an overwhelming amount of pride, peace or happiness. These are the memorable and simple moments we live for.

If you only live once, why don’t you use that chance to do something fun and become someone amazing? A motto isn’t an excuse. A motto is motivation.

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