Things I Would Tell My Younger Self
Hello everyone! When I was perusing Facebook over the weekend, I found a pretty interesting article on the Cosmo website called 9 Things I Wish I Knew About My Body When I Was Younger. Honestly, I don’t find a lot of Cosmo articles have much substance (shocking, I know) or good advice, so I was surprised to find this one. I really resonated with a lot of the points it made, and then it got me thinking: what would I tell my younger self? I also posed the question on various social media outlets, but without focusing on beauty or bodies, and here are some of the responses I received:
— My great-grandma told me too always wear sunglasses, no matter what the weather, so you don’t squint, and you’re never too young for eye cream. I don’t look 34, so it must work!
— Hug your family all the time. Even when you’re mad at them…You are not at fat as you think you are. (I would KILL to weigh what I did in high school!)
— Trust yourself.
— Stop worrying.
— Calm down and enjoy life 🙂
— That what you look like doesn’t matter, so worry about being a good person instead of trying to be a “pretty person.” Also to hoard money. I wish I could go back to 20 and have a serious talk with myself. If I’d been more responsible, my house would have been bought in cash and I’d have a lot fewer worries in my life.
— Not to turn the wheel to the right that day when I flipped my bike and lost my front two teeth.
— That you are a ball of potential and can do anything you see someone else can do. Never think “Someone like me (small town, female, uneducated) could never do that.” You can get your PHD, you can work at the UN, you can run for president. Not only can you, but you should try to shoot as high. You ARE good enough.
There are a lot of things I would like to tell myself when I was younger. Mostly I just can’t believe how far I’ve come or how much I’ve strayed from my original life plan. And I’m okay with that. Anyway, here are some things I would tell my younger self:
–Most of your biggest “issues” don’t really matter. It doesn’t matter if you spill ketchup on your shirt at lunch or trip walking up the stairs on your way to class. You will not die of humiliation, and no one will remember it tomorrow, let alone a few years from now. You will be just fine. You will make mistakes and mess up, but that’s just life. The world is much bigger than you realize.
— Stop putting yourself down. This is a habit that starts very early for a lot of people, and even though it seems like everyone loves to rag on themselves, don’t be one of those people. The more you do it, the harder it is to stop in the future. Love yourself, and learn to accept or (reasonably) change the things you don’t like about yourself.
— Focus on what makes you happy. Don’t join a club if you don’t actually like it. Think hard about what makes you happy and what you want to do with your life, and go from there. Find something to be passionate about, and don’t let that slip out of your fingers. Ever.
— You don’t always get what you want, and that’s okay. Even if you think you know what you want, sometimes you’re just plain wrong. You could be convinced you know what your future will hold, but the truth is that no one really knows what will happen. It’s great to have a plan, but be flexible and open yourself up to new opportunities because you may discover a new passion you never would’ve thought of on your own. Don’t limit yourself because you never know what’s waiting for you.
— Express yourself. Whether it’s writing in a journal or confiding in a friend, always find a way to express yourself. You’re going to have a lot of thoughts and feelings and that’s perfectly normal, but if you try to hold them in and hide them, it’ll feel like you’re tearing yourself apart. Feel whatever you need to feel wherever you need to feel it. If you need to cry, do it. If you need to laugh, do it. Don’t try to hold back your feelings and emotions for fear of what others will think. They’re probably worrying about the same things anyway.
— You are smarter than you know. And not just book smart. You know more about yourself and the world around you than you realize. Trust your gut. Hold on to your morals; they will get you far in life. Don’t waver from them for anyone.
— Grades in school aren’t everything. Yes, it’s important to do your best in school, but it’s also important to make memories. And I don’t mean underage drinking and partying and all that, I guess unless that’s really what you want to do. Make friends in new places. Stay in the library all day perusing if you want. Just do something other than study your butt off every night. Like I said, it is important to do your best, but don’t kill yourself over trying to be every teacher’s favorite student because it’s not possible. School is just a stepping stone to the rest of your life (and no, you probably won’t use physics or geometry or history every day after graduation).
— You are beautiful. You’ll finally realize this in the future, but I wish you had realized it sooner. You are beautiful right now, just the way you are, without makeup or brand-name clothing or designer purses or super long hair or big eyelashes or a size 2 figure. You are perfect, and you look exactly as you’re supposed to. No one else besides you notices that small pimple on your chin or a few strands of hair that are out of place from your messy bun or ponytail. Take a deep breath, look in the mirror and tell yourself you are beautiful. Right now. And at least try to believe it before you’re in your 20s.
Do you agree with any of the points above? What would you tell your younger self?