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What I Would Tell My Younger Self

“Life can only be understood backwards; but it must be lived forwards. “ – Soren Kierkegaard Before I can tell you about the advice I would give my younger self, I think it’s important to know who I am at this moment. Right now, I’m a 38-year-old who still feels as if I am 25 […]

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“Life can only be understood backwards; but it must be lived forwards. “
– Soren Kierkegaard

Before I can tell you about the advice I would give my younger self, I think it’s important to know who I am at this moment.

Right now, I’m a 38-year-old who still feels as if I am 25 only a lot more wiser. Children, marriage….wasn’t and isn’t my thing. Dogs and a boyfriend?! Yes please! I live in the suburbs of Phoenix, Arizona with my boyfriend of 6 years and our 2 dogs. I work in an office…and have been trying to make it as a writer. I got my Bachelors in English, a Master’s in Business and thought by this time in my life I would be a famous writer living in a mansion off the coast of San Diego. Sadly, I have yet to make enough money from writing to even pay my monthly cell phone bill.

Photo by Gabrielle Henderson on Unsplash

I hesitated and waited a lot in life. I didn’t believe in myself and consciously left it up to my “future self” to deal with fearful issues that I wanted to ignore at the time. (I thought somehow with age I would instantly gain confidence and be able to do all the things I was scared to do, more easily) This resulted in a lot more work for the present me to do.

Even when you’re older you still feel fearful….but you just learn to go for it anyway because you realize you really don’t have anything of importance to lose.

So, with that said, here is some advice the I would give the younger version of myself: Specifically the version of myself that just graduated college.

Emotions

  • Don’t be so angry at people or think that people have a hidden agenda.
    • People are not mean or deceiving as you think they are. Believe or not, like you…. people like to help each other out. So, do not be fearful or judgmental in thinking that people believe they know more than you. Drop your ego, talk to people, and learn from what they are telling you.

Do not be intimidated by others. People in high ranking job positions, are just people. You can talk to them like normal. They understand.

Health

  • Start Working Out and Eating Healthy.
    • This is how I eventually gained confidence. Going to the gym and eating healthy allowed me lose weight, which made me realize that I could do it. Now, I’m at a healthy weight and continue to work out every day. I wish that I had worked out at a younger age, because my body would have muscle memory, I would probably be more toned.

Career Advice

  • Do Not Give Up – Energy Flows Where Attention Goes.
  • You want to be a writer, so be a writer.
    • Write every single day.
    • Read books.
    • Find authors who inspire you.
    • Apply to those writing jobs.
    • Send out pitches.
      • Yes, you may have to get a day job as a means for a “paycheck” but that shouldn’t stop the energy and actions you need in order to be a writer.
  •  Don’t get bogged down in work drama or overwork yourself.
    • Unless it’s your dream job…..don’t put more energy into than what is needed. Instead, save your energy and attention for what you really want.

Be more realistic about the future.

  • Things are going to change.
  • Just because you graduated at the time of the recession, doesn’t mean that no jobs will ever exists or that no one will hire an inexperienced college grad.
  • It gets better.
  • The economy will always go up and done.
  • Have patience.

Dating

  • If there is no spark or connection with a guy on the first date…. tell him, bye.
    • I kept dating these guys because I felt bad blowing them off after the first date. Instead I would wait and see if they could offer anything more that I just missed or didn’t feel on the first date. Doing this, I wasted time and it was actually harder to get away from them. I wish I would’ve just done it on the first date, tell them it’s not going to work out and to move on.

Life Lesson

  • Definitely spend more time with your parents. Believe it or not….as you get older you kind of become friends with them.
  • Quit being angry at them, because they just did what they thought was best at the time. Instead, really get to learn who they are. Listen to their stories. Imagine them being a little kid and think about what their childhood must’ve been like.
  • When your mom dies, you are going to have moments where you want to call her to tell her things. But then, you remember she’s not here.
  • Appreciate every moment with them and be grateful for them.
    • Even if they are driving you crazy at the moment!

Establish Boundaries

  • Be way more open-minded when it comes to finding new friends.
    • Don’t get stuck in your group of friends who spend their time day drinking at the bars. Turns out, most people who enjoy drinking all day are not stable. Instead, meet other people and see how they spend their days. Join a workout class, join a writing group, actively seek out people who inspire you.
  • Let go of friendships that are toxic and don’t bring you joy. Don’t worry about coming across as rude or uncaring. You only have control over your emotions, and no one else. So, do what is best for you.
  • If you don’t feel comfortable around someone…. then don’t become friends with them. Even if this person is friends with another friend.
  • Don’t allow other “friends” to put their burdens on you, while they do not reciprocate back.
    • If they don’t have time to listen or talk out your problems, while you patiently listen and respond to theirs, then you need to stop investing in that person.
      • It’s not uncaring….it’s actually having respect for yourself, your time and your energy.
      • Why invest in someone, who doesn’t invest in you?

Instead, surround yourself with people who listen, support you and have good hearts. People who want the best for you, and not people who want to bring you down to their level. You are better than that.

Photo by Maddi Bazzocco on Unsplash

The Main Take Away

Stay away from toxic people and trust who you are as a person. You may feel like you have no idea what you are doing and you’re worried about making an ass out of yourself. But, you have to make an ass out of yourself in order to grow and learn.

So, start it now and don’t be scared. Because while you may have a rough day or you didn’t get that job interview you wanted….you still have people rooting for you and you’ll make it happen as long as you don’t give up.

Have a lot of patience and discipline yourself to constantly move forward. Learn from your mistakes but don’t dwell on them. Move forward.

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