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Note to my Younger Self

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I used to hear the old folk say “If I knew then, what I know now…”  After that statement, a number of things they would do differently would follow.  After reading this article in the Huffington Post, I wondered if there were any jewels I would tell my younger self if I could go back in time.

In the May 2012 issue of O magazine, Oprah wrote a letter to her younger self.  One of the great pieces of advice to her younger self was “learn to see yourself with your own eyes.”  As I pondered what to tell a younger me, I realized that some things would be automatic, such as “learn to save and not spend all your check from your first Summer job on Doritos and Jungle Juice” or “live in the moment.”  Yet some things would not be as obvious and would need my older, wiser self to make sure that the younger me got it.  Here are some things I think a younger me would benefit from

Know that being molested at 9 didn’t define your sexuality and how you love.

Me-at-15It is okay to admit that you needed a father.  It’s okay to admit that you were a fatherless daughter and needed the guidance of a father to show you how to be loved by a man.  It is okay to forgive yourself for any indiscretions that happened because of the lack of that guidance and it is okay to forgive him for not being there.

Lose the perfectionism.  It is overrated.  People want to be able to identify with something and perfection isn’t one of them.

As much as you will say you don’t care what others think or say about you, you do care and admitting that will keep you from letting the thoughts and words of others define you so deeply.

It’s okay to be your goofy self.  Not everyone can play sports and be all coordinate and stuff.  Don’t beat yourself up over that, but do watch your step because you can trip over your own shadow.

 

masksLet people see the real you.  The mask you keep up gets heavy and it’s tiring trying to keep up the façade that you are okay all the time.  Let people see that you have vulnerabilities.  No one will take advantage of you if you let your guard down.

You are stronger than you think, but don’t try to be strong for everybody, all the time.

You are smart.  You don’t have to try so hard to show people how smart you are.

Your smile and laugh are contagious don’t cover that up.

Me-at-10

 

 

 

What would you tell your younger self?  Let me know in the comments below.

 

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