Dear Younger Me,
Stop! Stop what you are doing and listen up! Stop blaming yourself for every little mistake, stop hating the way you look and feel, stop striving for perfection and stop trying to please everyone! I wish I could have said this to you sooner as I see all of those things that had such an impact on your life back then and were so hard to manage, navigate and work through.
You will never be perfect, but you will be you! An amazing, beautiful, caring, smart and hard-working you! Those imperfections are what make you unique, what make others want to be around you, and what makes people want to hear what you have to say. Trying to conform and be part of something is too difficult and compromising of who you are. Yes, we all have to compromise to be a part of a group so everyone gets along, but if you have to change your looks, your beliefs, or do something you feel is hurtful, that isn’t a group you want to be with. Being alone is difficult. It can be lonely and sometimes sad, but if you embrace it instead of fight it, you will find there are so many things you can learn about yourself and be involved in. Engage in that book you love, the drawing you didn’t have time for, the exercise you always meant to do, the place you wanted to visit. All of these things will bring you confidence and lead you to meet people. People like you, who have common interests and like you for those things, not because you wore certain clothes or gossiped about someone.
You are beautiful! Stop comparing yourself to others and embrace and appreciate your own body and beauty. If you had all of the features of a super model, would your life be any different or better? No! You would end up with a whole other set of problems. Maybe you wouldn’t know if people liked you for you or your looks and that would increase your insecurity. Guys might want to go out with you for one reason or maybe no one would take you seriously. You have so many beautiful features. Your body, your face, your hair are all beautiful. They may not be perfect, but those little imperfections make your beauty show in your own way. Your beauty is from the inside. Your kindness, your care and concern for others, your intelligence, your desire to make the world a better place, your curiosity, and your affection you show everyone. That glows and shows through your sparkling eyes, your luscious hair and your beautiful body. No one notices that birth mark or that you are bloated today. They notice your smile, the confidence you wear and the warmth you bring to every encounter. They notice how you make them feel and that makes you twice as pretty and sexy as the person next to you.
Let go of all of the worry and anxiety that plagues you with every test, every decision, and every social encounter. What if you mess up? What if you fail? What is the worst that can happen? Try not to put too much weight into every situation. Yes, there will be times when things do not go your way. That doesn’t mean you are a failure or no one wants to be your friend. Stop taking life so seriously. Relax and learn to laugh at yourself. You will be shocked at how many people will enjoy your company when you can do this. It lightens the mood and takes something so unimportant and places even less importance on it. It doesn’t mean you don’t try or care, but when it doesn’t work out exactly as planned, you are able to roll with it. Every problem has a solution, so when they arise, use your energy to find ways to fix those issues instead of allowing the anxiety and stress to take over.
Stop trying to make everyone happy, especially at the sacrifice of yourself! It is a wonderful quality to want to help others or make things special for them but when it is hurting you or at your expense, NOT okay! Speak up! Have a voice! Say what you feel! Set those boundaries and don’t allow others to take advantage of you, especially your kindness. Let them know that you will be there, give and care but there are times when it is necessary to take care of yourself too.
Finally, be who you are, embrace who you are and be proud of who you are. Cut ties with those who bring you down and encourage those relationships of those who bring you up. Follow your dreams, take those risks and don’t be afraid of failure. Be someone who can make yourself feel as good as you can make others feel and remind yourself everyday of all the ways you make this world a better place.