The Life A-Squad-ic: Taking Girl-Gang Lessons from Taylor Swift

On how to assemble, lead, entertain, and discipline your own friends.

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In my last analysis, I argued that Taylor Swift's underground network of famous girls is a lot like a centuries-old secret society that leaves pointy shapes lying around everywhere and controls world events through subliminal messaging in Beyoncé's music. I take it all back.

They're too advanced to compare to the Illuminati now. In a few months, they've evolved into a well-trained ensemble of elite boxerinas/munitions experts who run through walls like they're Kleenex. There are so many of them they have to serve *two* birthday cakes at any given celebration. But they're not to be feared. No—they're to be studied because, along with a femur-shattering roundhouse kick and an immaculate matte red lip, they've mastered friendship.

Here, we've created a guidebook on how to assemble, lead, entertain, and discipline your own squad—just like Taylor.

Communicate coordinating outfit choices via brain waves

You still text/talk in person? How quaint.

To increase your numbers, have your squad infiltrate other squads

Nashville Squad featuring 4 Followills and 2 Swifts @lilyaldridge

A post shared by Taylor Swift (@taylorswift) on

The nice way to put this: cross-squad pollination. The realistic way: a hostile takeover the other squad didn't know was hostile until it was too late. (Except they'll enjoy the cookies and streamers and stuff, so it's all cool.)

Add new squad members, but keep the old (as part of your extended squad)

The Surprise - The Finale @abigail_lauren @yelyahwilliams @dashboardconfessional

A post shared by Taylor Swift (@taylorswift) on

In inferior squads, the protocol would be to test an extended squad member's loyalty by leaving your phone unattended or an already-opened pack of Oreos out in the open. But if you want to follow Taylor's lead, you'll arrange a surprise Dashboard Confessional concert...because, weirdly enough, you trust them.

Praise your squad

Ten out of 10 workplace experts are like, "Whaddidtell you" right now.

Share your life philosophy with your squad

"I try to be available for life to happen to me." -Bill Murray @haimtheband

A post shared by Taylor Swift (@taylorswift) on

Give them something to believe in—besides you, of course.

Lean on them

Real love. @serayah @haimtheband @lordemusic @halstonsage

A post shared by Taylor Swift (@taylorswift) on

Literally. (Look at Lorde.) Especially when they've all confirmed receipt of your mental iMessage to wear neutrals/denim/stripes.

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