Letter to My 21-Year-Old Self

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Dear Me,

I’m impressed. You made it all the way to 34 without killing anyone. You included. It sure wasn’t easy, but you pulled through it all. You were always a late bloomer which I know bothered you a lot at the time. But, if you’re going to get everything you wanted, does it matter when? It could have been much easier for you had you known what I know now.

You will regret all the pointless fights with your dad because he won’t be there for long. If you don’t do it now, you will not be able to tell him that you love him and that you’re sorry for all the hard times you put him through for no good reason.

Don’t fall in love so easily and pay attention to what guys say- if it doesn’t sound good, chances are they mean it. Don’t ignore the signs just because they’re handsome; it won’t really matter how handsome they are when they break your heart. Choose right and don’t waste your emotions on empty people with good looks; look beyond pretty faces and fancy shoes.

Relationships are hard work. If you’re not ready, please don’t waste people’s time and emotions unnecessarily for it will come back to haunt you later on in life.

Work is important, but so is your family. Don’t be ashamed of putting your family first and don’t beat yourself up for needing a break. We’re not designed to work endlessly, so don’t pay attention to those who judge you for setting your priorities straight.

If something doesn’t work out, you need to believe it’s for the best. Don’t get stuck at a lost opportunity or a withdrawn offer; there’s so much more ahead of you to see.

Don’t let people talk you into living their own dreams; if you want it, it’s good enough. Never apologize for wanting less or more than everyone else. We’re not meant to be copies of other people. You are an original and this will always be your strength; don’t give it up to fit in.

Don’t suppress your emotions to be professional; you can keep both at the same time. Your heart is there for a reason; use it as much as your head to continue to be who you really are.

Let go of those who claim to be your friends when you know deep inside they’re not. Trust me on this one, spending your evenings alone is much better than hanging out in all the cool places with fake friends.

Family, friends or your partner have needs too. The time will not always be right for them to support you or listen to your endless stories about whatever it is that’s bothering you. Cut them some slack if they’re not always there when you need them. You have to admit you’re quite needy at times.

Be kind to people regardless of how worthy they are of your kindness; there’s always some faint hope your kindness will change them and soften their hearts.

Love yourself even when no one else does, because this is the only way you will keep going. Don’t listen to those who criticize you endlessly claiming you won’t make it. You will achieve much more than you thought was possible. Celebrate it with those you love and never undermine your achievements because of the jealousy and hate of others. How they feel about your success is not your problem.

Think before you talk, especially when you’re angry. The things you say to hurt people, could hurt them for longer than that angry moment you had.

Finally, please go easy with the horrible food; I’m still suffering because of your poor food choices and lack of exercise until this very moment- I just had an orange for lunch.

Love always,


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