I came across a post by Unstuck today on brilliant pieces of life advice.
It reminded me of a book I have called Dear Me: A letter to my sixteen year old self. So I started to imagine what I would tell my moody teenage self if I had a time machine. Here's what I came up with.
- You’re much smarter than you think you are. Smart isn’t just memorising battle dates or doing well in tests. Find the things that interest you and the rest follows. It helps when people believe in you, but all that really does is convince you to believe in yourself, you can skip the middle bit and be awesome anyway.
- The nomadic childhood you hate so much, will make you resourceful, resilient and open-minded. Those things are going to help you create a great lifestyle one day. So take a look around, maybe there’s some good stuff you are overlooking while being grumpy about it!
- Let things go sooner. A few people will let you down, learn from it and move on, quickly. It won’t help to go to the mattresses over it, or rehash it again and again. You will create your own swamp of despair if you don’t find the exit quickly, it’s the door marked 'your happy place’. It’s not a trick!
- Help others, I know, it’s sounds so twee! But it really works, you feel good, you feel in control and that seeps into your own life. Their happiness is contagious and on the day you need it, you will have an army of grateful friends ready to suit up for you.
- Nice guys finish first. Seriously, those moody self absorbed poets are morons, don’t be one too. The drama makes for good movie viewing but terrible real life, they just make you crazy and a tedious friend. Date the nice guys you don’t have to play games with. Also, be honest and good for them too.
- You don’t have to be able to draw a fruit bowl to be creative. There are many things to learn and make and play, anyone can play. One day someone will invent a photo sharing heaven called Instagram and you’ll quickly find all the other weirdos to inspire you. Strangers will make your day, and everyday life will become a styled gallery of small pleasures.
- Let humility be your guide. Don’t shut out people who intimidate you. Your assumptions are probably wrong and you risk missing out on some great friends and mentors. Nuff said.
- You can sing if you want to. I know you think you can't but you can be ok at it and it won't matter anyway just do it, it feels so nice!
- Finally, I would tell my lonely teenage self, everything's going to be ok. Maybe not everyone understands now, but what you can't see is that they want to. You will find your tribe, you will be loved, you will be important. You will get your five laughs a day and more.