A letter to myself — 10 things I wished someone told me

By self

Dear me,

Yes. I’m talking to you — miss never feeling right or quite fitting in. If time travel somehow became a reality and you managed to get this letter, here are 10 things that you ought to read.

I know this because growing up, you never really had these advice and when they did come, it was a little tad later than it should have been. So listen up, younger me, I’ve got important things to tell you.

1. Confidence

Have confidence in your abilities. You will fail your first driving test, not because you’ve messed up in some way, but because you lacked confidence in high speeds areas. The last thing the tester wants is a gawky teen who is unsure about her own skills.

Life is like driving and if you’re not confident in what you’re doing, accidents can happen. When you’re uncertain, you become a hazard to yourself and those on the road.

Check your wing and back mirrors then make a decision. Either change lane or stay. Don’t hesitate or else you’re going to miss your exit.

2. Dress up every day

I know you’re a low maintenance kind of girl, but it doesn’t mean you have to be a slob. Find clothes you actually like and fits you properly. Experiment a little and personalize your style.

The way you dress speaks volumes about how you view yourself and how others treat you.

You don’t have to slap on a ton of make up or wear heels if you don’t want to. I’m saying, look presentable, even on days you don’t feel like it. Tie up your hair. Wash your face. Moisturize your skin. Look awake and alert. Find yourself a uniform that works for you if you have to.

And shoes. You only need 3 — sneakers, a good pair of boots and a pair of flats.

3. Grades don’t matter

Not as much as you think it is, unless you’re considering a medical or legal career, then grades do matter.

If you’re going down the entrepreneur route, what matters most is the love of self learning and making connections with people. Some times you can’t learn in school, no matter how much you want to. It’s the people you know that will teach you what you need.

4. Remember to read

It’s one thing to buy a book and let it sit on the shelf. It’s another when you actually make the time to read it.

There are pockets of time everywhere — on the train, on the bus, on the ferry, waiting for things to happen. The more you read, the more you learn and absorb the experiences of others. You can gain a decade’s worth of knowledge by just reading about a revelation that took ten years to get to.

Book authors do all the hard work for you. Weather you learn from it by reading the book, or you don’t by leaving in untouched.

5. Time will weed out your friends

There are friends that you have in high school and university that you will never see again. Then there are friends that stick around for all the seasons — the good, the bad, the quirky, the breakups, the celebrations and everything else in between.

You will discover that from your countless friends, you’re down to about a couple by the time you’re nearing your 30s. They’re the ones that stick around and make an effort to talk to you and you don’t mind doing the same.

It happens.

6. Build your portfolio

It doesn’t matter what career you end up in, build some sort of portfolio and keep adding to it.

It’s going to suck at first but at least you have something. Add to it every time something happens, you’ve learnt something or created something new.

And if you don’t like it, you can always rip it down and improve on it.

7. Never skimp on the things you use the most

Because it will last you longer.

We’re talking shoes, clothing, skincare, pots and pans.

These are the things that you’ll end up using the most. Rather than spending a little amount of a few hundred things, spend a hundred or two on a few things.

It’s going to save you money in the long run.

A pair of $100+ sneakers is going to make sure that your feet are well supported and last longer than a pair you got for $10.

Limit the amount of things you have by spending more on them. Besides, when you have a lot, you only end up using a few favorite pieces anyway. Why not invest and make everything your favorite?

8. Go minimalist

This is a follow on from number 7.

Seriously. You don’t need all that stuff. Besides, when you have a lot of things, moving house is a pain.

Learn to let go of things and learn not to add to your collection of things. It will simplify your life and makes things easier to find.

Have only what you need and whatever makes you happy. No more. No less. It’s less mental clutter.

9. Delete Facebook and Instagram from your phone

The more you scroll, the more sucked in you’ll get into the superficial life that you think you’re supposed to be having.

Your life is more than just the number of likes you have. If you’re going to use it, use it as a tool to properly connect with people. Don’t just passively like. Actually talk to the person as well.

Either that or you’re just going to spend time watch food videos and stupid cat gifs.

10. It’s ok to fail

Because when you don’t fail, you’re not doing something different. Your life will become a monotony of the same old thing while you yearn for something more.

Take the risk.

It’s ok to fail.

Shit happens and as long as you learn from it, you’re golden.

Last modified: May 28, 2020

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