29 Things I Wish I Could Tell My Younger Self

things i wish i could tell my younger sel

Coat: Seraphine {c/o} | Jeans: Motherhood Maternity | Boots: Madewell {no longer sold, similar style here}

With being pregnant, every big life event seems to come and go without much thought. Let’s be serious, a baby is so much more to worry about and look forward to! Case in point – my birthday is next month. I typically make a big deal out of birthdays and love to go out to dinner with my friends and family. This year, I’m not sure I’ll feel up to it + our calendar is filling up pretty quickly. 

But I don’t want to forget about my birthday all together, so today I wanted to do some self reflection in anticipation of turning the big 2-9. It’s only fitting that I create a list of 29 things I wish I could tell my younger self. A lot of these items are a bit “deep,” but there’s some funny tidbits at the end. If you’re still in college or in your early 20s, I hope you take some value out of this post! 

things i wish i could tell my younger sel
things i wish i could tell my younger self

1. Surround yourself with people who bring you joy. 100% the most important thing I wish I could tell my younger self. You become more like the people you surround yourself with. So, you mind as well keep a close knit of awesome people – the best of the best, people who inspire you to be a better version of yourself. Keep these people around forever. 

2. Cut people out of your life who suck. This goes hand in hand with numero uno. Get rid of the people who are debbie downers or just bring too much drama to your life. Only give people a certain amount of chances. Life’s too short. Buh-bye. 

3. Love yourself before you try to love someone else. Everyone always tells you this sliver of advice, but it’s completely true. Don’t throw yourself in a relationship if you aren’t sure who you are, if you don’t love yourself, or if you aren’t secure. Been there. Done that. It makes things very difficult. You’re constantly questioning EVERYTHING. 

4. Have meaningful conversations with your loved ones often. I used to call my grandmom every single day and chat with her on my way to class. We’d talk about random things – what I had planned that day, how her hair dresser appointment went, drama in her neighborhood, what happened on Days of Our Lives. Super random stuff. But now that she’s no longer with us, I am so happy that I talked to her as much as I did. Now, there are still days when I wish I could pick up the phone and call her. 

5. Don’t spend energy worrying about the past or planning too far in the future. Story of my life. Even now, I find that I worry too much about the future – like WAY in the future. Things that aren’t happening for months and months. I need to take my own advice and chill the hell out sometimes. I get really worked up over the dumbest things. So, do as I say… not as I do on this one. 

6. There’s never going to be a better time to do something than in the present. Stop procrastinating. Stop making to-do list on top of to-do list. Stop over-planning. If you’re passionate about something, there’s never going to be a more ideal time. You never know if you’ll be inspired or motivated at a later time, so do it now. Want to launch a blog? Want to start a small business? Want to take a European vaca? DO IT. 

7. You’re not invincible. Too much alcohol, not enough sleep and a jam-packed schedule are going to catch up to you. You’re not superwoman. Chill out a bit and make sure your health is a top priority. No excuses. 

8. Let yourself heal. If you’re going through something rough – a death of a loved one, a breakup, or maybe just a really crappy day – take time for yourself. Cry if you want to. Listen to all the sad music in the world. Write in your journal. Do whatever you need to do. Going back to number 7, you’re not invincible. Bad things are going to happen and you need to let yourself heal. 

9. Stop worrying about what other people think. People are going to have an opinion about you throughout your entire life. That’s just reality. If you can learn to stop caring so much early on, you’ll be better able to cope with rejection as you get older. 

10. Don’t downplay your intelligence. If you asked me in college what I wanted to do with my life, I would of said, “Uhm, maybe something in psychology like a therapist. That might be cool. Eh, I don’t really know.” In all actuality, I knew exactly what I wanted to do. {My plans ended up changing, but that’s not the point!} I was REALLY good at cognitive psychology, as in my final grade was 100%. I loved learning about the science behind how people behave. I wanted to work on brains in a lab. I didn’t think that was exceptionally cool or interesting to talk about at the time, so I downplayed it. Don’t do that. Don’t downplay your intelligence. 

things i wish i could tell my younger self

11. Crappy things can sometimes happen to good people. Some things are completely out of your control. You could plan your perfect, ideal life until you’re blue in the face, but that doesn’t mean things will play out the way you think they will. Don’t lose hope. Keep going. Things get better.

12. Travel, travel and travel some more. It might not seem feasible to travel now, but it only gets more difficult down the road. If you have the time and resources to take a trip, do it. Don’t second guess whether it’s a good decision. Traveling and experiencing new places is ALWAYS a good idea. 

13. If you have a bad feeling about something or someone, you’re probably right. Trust your intuition. 

14. Be grateful for resources around you. I get it. Asking for help is difficult at times, especially if you made a bad decision and need help setting things right again. Your friends and family love you lots and are more than willing to offer assistance when you are down and out. 

15. Ask for what you want. I learned this lesson from my MIL. When I was looking for a job right out of college, her advice to me was to ask for what I wanted. The worst thing they could say is no. This is amazing advice and I think about this anytime I’m struggling with a decision. 

things i wish i could tell my younger self

16. Never stop being creative. Fill your life with artsy things if you enjoy it. Make time in your busy schedule to write, dance, draw and design. It will help bring some balance to an otherwise monotonous routine. 

17. You won’t make everyone happy, and that’s OK. Stop trying to please people. Obviously, don’t be a complete jerk… but be you and move on. If someone’s not happy that’s their problem at the end of the day. 

18. Time is the most valuable thing you have. Use all the free time you have on whatever makes you happy, but don’t waste your time on stupid or drama-filled stuff that doesn’t bring you joy. Time is one of those things that you can never get back. 

19. Apologize when you’re wrong. You’re going to be wrong. A LOT. You probably don’t think you’re wrong, but you need to see all sides of the situation and do some self-reflecting. Instead of just walking away from relationships/friendships, apologize for your mistakes and learn from them. 

things i wish i could tell my younger self

Now onto some funny, but 100% ACCURATE things I wish I could tell my younger self…

20. Ugg boots with a denim skirt and a sparkly tank top is never a good look. Thank god for roommates who took photos of my outfits to show me just how stupid I looked. 

21. Stop it with the tanning beds. Gosh, these are so bad. They are going to make your skin look like leather if you continue doing this. {THANKFULLY, I cut that habit after college.}

22. Cosmo Magazine shouldn’t be your bible. 90% of their tips and tricks for relationships are false. 

23. Don’t apply for every credit card that comes your way. Student loan debt sucks on it’s own. Having credit card debt on top of that is basically hell on Earth. 

24. Dying your hair every other month is a BAD idea. You’ll wind up paying a pretty penny to get your hair color-corrected when you realize that going from black to light brown turns your hair orange. 

25. Stop wasting all your money at Forever 21. Buy more classic/staple clothing. It’s difficult to walk away from the trendy pieces at Forever 21, but keep that to a minimum. Otherwise, you’ll end up getting rid of most of your wardrobe in your mid-twenties and have to start fresh when you realize denim skirts and sequined tank tops won’t last forever.  

26. Protein bars are snacks – not meal replacements for both lunch and dinner. Also, stop eating so many bars in general. There’s so many chemicals and crap in them. You’re going to get sick of them anyway. 

27. Life is not like a Hallmark movie, but neither is it like an episode of The Hills. It’s filled with ups and downs. It’s not always rainbows and butterflies, nor is it going to be always so dramatic. 

28. Take advice with a grain of salt. Seriously. People are going to give you a ton of random, unsolicited advice about the craziest things. It gets even worse when you’re pregnant. 

29. High school isn’t everything. College will be some of the best years of your life and the rest of your twenties will be even better than that. 

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3 Comments

  1. November 10, 2017 / 10:55 am

    I really loved this! Thanks for sharing and happy early bday 🙂

  2. November 10, 2017 / 11:33 am

    So many things to agree with in this – I’m a bit older and found myself nodding along because I’ve said similar things to myself! Especially about cutting out bad people/not filling up my days with stuff I don’t care about. It makes a difference.

    Now I just need to stop relying on Cosmo advice so much.

  3. November 11, 2017 / 11:33 pm

    Great read. Here’s to 2-9, cheers.

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