We all had that life plan. You know the one. They asked us a few times in grade school and we would write it down, hide it away, and open it for a serving of nostalgia after graduation.
But how many times does it really work out that way? If I had to guess, less than 50%. For me, that plan included marriage, a Master’s degree, and my first company. Lofty goals. I would beat myself about deviating from “the path” or “my plan” so much. I later realized that it was because we’re never taught that life can get in the way. Or rather-that it’s OKAY that we pave our own way. I have two younger sisters that are at pivotal stages in their lives. They’re literally some of my favorite humans ever and I hope to inspire and–hopefully–teach them what I have learned from my experience-mistakes included.
We never account for the possibility of changing our minds, falling in love, falling out of it, and the overall experience that is life. I turned 27 years old on September 27 and was recently inspired by Ingrid Nilsen’s most recent video. This was really enlightening and intimidating to write, especially because as soon as I hit ‘publish’, this information is officially on the Internet forever. Part of my self-care routine is to constantly reflect and appreciate how far I have come without becoming entangled in the past, as well as being damn proud of what I have achieved. I encourage all of you to do the same 🙂 I would love to hear your thoughts on what you would tell your younger self. Comment below so we can start a conversation. I’ve also included some photos of my younger self (which are slightly embarrassing!) c. 2009-2012. I hope you enjoy.
- Yes, this move is brave. It will lead you to one of the best adventures of your life.
- Call your sisters more often.
- Don’t hold on to what you have been taught your whole life by others around you as a guide to live YOUR life.
- Don’t be afraid to make the first move: introduce yourself to that peer, the cute boy in your merchandising class, or the quiet girl reading the same book.
- Ask more questions; in fact, ask as many as you can. The universe is here for you to learn from it.
- Why not you? Your race, image, background, financial status holds absolutely no bearing on your character or what you can achieve.
- Nobody is born deserving anything. Be more humble. It’s good for the soul.
- Accept that you need to practice gratitude more often. It will change your life.
- You are not responsible for people’s mistakes. The only thing you can offer to your loved ones is affection and support, but you are not a life jacket to anyone and everyone who may be drowning.
- Learn to say no. It doesn’t make you a bad friend or colleague.
- Your time is valuable. Don’t waste it seeking validation from anyone.
- Study abroad. Jumping into the unknown is good for you.
- Don’t stop reading. You will never, ever stop learning. Even after college.
- Fashion is not the only bubble in which you live and work in; read about astronomy, sociology, and technology.
- I know you love those to-do lists and being productive, but you need to also learn to relax.
- SLEEP. It’s healthy.
- Oh, you found a wrinkle? That’s OK.
- Also, don’t freak out about the bags under your eyes. See #16.
- Please treasure the friendships you will encounter. They need nurturing as well.
- You’ve been in lust, but not in love…yet.
- Your sexuality is not a demon. What’s more is that it will be one of the most spiritual experiences when it’s with someone who loves you. It’s also fun. Own it. You’re not married either. So what? Chill. Let go of the Catholic guilt. What happens between two consenting adults is nobody else’s business.
- Get lost in those blue eyes because you’re about to fall in love. He’s somebody that will teach you so much.
- Meditate and search within you.
- Hold onto that faith. Believing is half the battle.
- Keep writing. You’re good at it.
- Don’t wait for that “perfect job”; seek inspiring people and opportunities.
- Keep being that hopeless romantic.
I hope, as always, that you have found this helpful or perhaps even inspiring.
What would you tell your younger self?