Don’t Tell Me to Chill

By Sarah Dolgin
Volume 68, Issue III

Picture this: you just failed a test that you were counting on to bring up your math average, and you are ranting to your friend about it. Suddenly, he says that one word that makes your skin crawl: “chill.” Not only were your valid feelings concerning your academic success invalidated by that single word, you most certainly questioned yourself and how you were feeling. An epidemic of thoughtless, and quite frankly obnoxious commentary in response to valid concerns has broken out in common language and, truth be told, telling someone to “chill” is not going to solve anything, except for your bad case of self-righteousness. News flash: no one wants to be told to chill. Life is hard enough as it is, and being “chill” is overrated anyways, right? RIGHT? Sorry, was that not “chill” enough for you? Exactly. Just as I thought, don’t deny that the second I asked that question you had to fight the urge to tell me to chill. There certainly is a lot of anti-chill detox to be done, so I will allow you that one fault. Being chill is a ridiculous social construct that no one has the right to define.

No one has the right to tell someone else to “be chill” either. If you want someone to chill, chances are you should step outside and feel the breeze because that is just about the closest you will get to “being chill.” According to the Merriam-Webster Dictionary, the definition of chill is “a sensation of cold accompanied by shivering,” and it should be left at that. A “degree of cold” should be the only usage of the word “chill,” and the stigma surrounding the phrase “you need to chill” can be changed to one pertaining to temperature, and temperature only. Not only is discussion of the weather a truly exemplary conversation topic, it almost guarantees that the conversation will not result in emotional distress and offensive commentary. That, ladies and gentlemen, is truly rewarding. Rid yourselves of the shackles of “being chill,” and express whatever you wish to express. It is honestly pointless to “chill” when you could take up violin lessons, or interpretive dancing instead. As for people who commonly use the phrase, there is hope for you too, just do us all a favor and take a lap.

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