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8 Teen Life Hacks Moms Could Use Right Now

In case you haven't noticed, your teen is an expert when it comes to figuring out ways to make life easier for themselves. While my first instinct is to get mad when I find out they're pretending not to know how to change the toilet paper roll, I've come to look at these acts as pure genius and have decided to try and use these to make my life easier, too.

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1. Never stop buying lip balm

I spend a ridiculous amount of time digging around in my purse for my lip balm, but I'm about to take a lesson from my teen girls and start stockpiling it like it's Armageddon and all of the lip balm factories have been reduced to a sticky, strawberry-scented rubble. With six pots of Carmex and nine eos balls in every bag, my lips will never be chapped again.

2. Don't wear matching socks

My daughter hasn't worn a matching pair since second grade.

Next to digging in my purse for Chapstick, looking for matching socks is the next biggest time-suck in my life. My teen's solution: Unmatched socks are a "thing" so just go with it already. My daughter hasn't worn a matching pair since second grade. I'm hoping unmatched shoes become a trend, too, so I can stop throwing out my back looking under the bed for my missing sandal.

3. Always multitask your TV watching

Eating dinner and then trying to binge watch "House of Cards" makes for a very late night. But my teens have mastered the art of the TV multitask, which means they're able to fit in a burger, AP biology test prep and an entire season of "Orange Is The New Black" in one sitting. I'm learning fast—in fact, I'm writing this post, bedazzling a fanny pack and watching the last season of "Gilmore Girls" all at the same time!

4. Use the tear-face emoji at the end of every apology text

I can never stay mad when I see :'( after "Forgot my lunch" or "Sorry I'm late" or "There was no change leftover from the $20." It's as if that colon, apostrophe and parentheses just reach right out and grab a hold of my cold, hard heart. Which is why I'm going to try adding :'( to the end of all of my late credit card payments from now on.

5. If you only have time to put on half your makeup, pair it with a hairstyle where your bangs cover half your face

My 16-year-old swears she does this all the time and no one's the wiser. Unbelievably clever, even though she admits it gets tiresome seeing out of one eye all day long. I take at least half the credit for this one, since I think she was inspired by me getting only dressed from the waist up when I know everyone will only be seeing me through the car window.

6. Turn off "Send Read Receipts" on your phone

My girls say that no one really needs to know that you've read their text. Because nothing could be more awkward than a boy knowing that you've read his text message, but are ignoring his requests to hang out and play Mario Kart. Or your mom knowing that you've read her text message, but are ignoring her requests to come home early and clean your room. Or a client knowing that you've read their text message, but are ignoring their requests to edit down that piece by 200 words.

7. Block your parents from most of your Facebook posts

They don't want to worry me and I'm not sure I want to see everything my kids are doing and be privy to every thought going through their confounding and rapidly expanding minds anyway. I totally get it, in the same way I don't want my 94-year-old mom seeing that photo of me going out to the supermarket without a sweater.

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8. Relax so you don't need so many life hacks

I guess we can all take a page from a teen's playbook and make our lives easier by just stop overthinking things and worrying about following rules too closely. With that in mind, I'm going to go out with my mismatched socks, a purse bursting with 50 kinds of lip balm and without a single sweater on. Sorry this last one wasn't a real life hack :'(

Image via Marsha Takeda-Morrison

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