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To My Younger Self (Mini Wisdoms Everyone Should Know)

There’s plenty I wish I could tell you. There’s so much I wish I could teach you. There are matters I wish I could remind you of. There are experiences I wish I could prevent you from enduring. There are things I wish I could give you, and there are things I’ve had to forgive you for. 

I’ve compiled a list, a complex list, of specifications and simplicities. I wish for you, or future readers, to truly grasp these messages, as I am beginning to do so myself.

  1. Be patient with yourself, and others. 

You’re going to mess up. You’re going to wish you had approached things differently, used time more effectively, reasoned with people, and been more successful. It’s all trial and error. That’s the point of life. You mess up, hopefully learn from it, and move forward with the newfound wisdom you have. You don’t have to get everything right.  

  1. Your parents are people too. 

    It’s hard to identify that they have names beyond Mom or Dad sometimes, but remember, they’re individuals too. They’re trying their best in their marriage, relationships, and careers, hoping they’re getting this right. They can only teach what they’ve learned themselves. Understand where they came from, and you’ll understand where they’re coming from. 

  1. Your worth does not depend on your academics or physical beauty. 

    As someone who is academically charged, this is something that’s hard to comprehend at times. A grade truly means nothing in comparison to the grand scheme of things. Work hard, and learn what you can. The end result truly doesn’t matter as much as it seems to at the moment. Have you thought about a test grade a year after taking it? The answer is normally, no. Learn, and fall in love with simply learning.

    Please, love every piece of yourself – your body, your face, your crooked nose and wide feet, because they provide you with the steps you take, your heartbeat, your breath. All of your makeup provides you with life, which is a privilege. If you’re worried about not being attractive enough, believe me when I say, if someone truly loves you, they already see your infinite beauty. If they don’t, there’s so many people who will, so so many.

  1. Spread love, EVERYONE needs it.

    There’s so many people going through more than you would ever know. Be kind. Even when you don’t feel like it, just be kind. 

  1. Be vulnerable, your story is yours. 

    It took me years to understand that people want to know more about me than just the small talk basics. Talking about the things I’ve been through, people I’ve met, places I’ve seen, and how I feel, has connected me to more people, in deeper ways than I could have ever imagined. Vulnerability will allow you to feel love and connection so deeply. 

  1. Surround yourself with people who solely add to your life, don’t take away. 

    There are a lot of people you will meet along your life, and more often than not, they’ll come and go. Relationships should only add to your life. They should add happiness, company, comfort, and not the opposite. You have the power to choose those you want to surround yourself with, and in doing so, you’re advocating for yourself, so choose wisely.

  1. A relationship will not fix loneliness. 

    The times when you feel loneliest (which you will, it’s inevitable),  aren’t the times to seek out romantic relationships. Someone cannot fulfill the hole you feel you have. Use this opportunity to build yourself. Seek help and identify where you can grow as a person. Your future romantic relationships will thank you.

  1. You can’t save everyone. 

    You’re still going to try no matter what, I know. But, only people who want to be helped, can be helped. Don’t overextend yourself for those who don’t want it. 

  1. Your hobbies are indeed talents. 

    You consider all your talents as hobbies because “there are so many people out there more talented” than you consider yourself to be. Therefore,  in your eyes, they can’t be considered talents. You’re SO talented. The more you admire them and appreciate them, the more you’ll practice them, and it makes you feel so fulfilled. Be kinder to yourself. 

  1. There will always be stressors, so consider changing your perspective.

    It’ll seem at times like you have the worst luck, that things never seem to go your way. But the fact of the matter is, you are beyond blessed. As cliche as it is, find the good in everyday life. Even if ten good things happened and only one bad, biologically we are more prone to focus on that singular bad thing. Force yourself to see beyond the bad. It’ll make life so much easier. You’re going to have stressful things every single day, do you really want to be anxious every single day? Don’t torture yourself. 

  1. Decisions are not indefinite, there will always be another option. 

    Decisions have always been my biggest fear. I’m constantly afraid I am going to end up making the wrong choice, and somehow ruin some factor of my life. Despite every decision I’ve ever made, every time with this fear hovering over me, I somehow end up okay. I’ve grown to realize that every decision follows another decision, therefore, there will always be another one ahead of you that can change your current situation if you aren’t happy with it. You will always have a choice, and as daunting as it seems, it makes life very forgiving. The sooner you realize this, the sooner you’ll have freedom over your life. 

  1. Perfection doesn’t exist. 

    Read it again, and again, and as many times as you need until it sticks. 

So, to my younger self, I won’t sit here and warn you of who you’ll become, because you’ll like her. She’s someone I would be happy for you to meet, I’m proud of her.. Perhaps warning you of the experiences you’ll have will simply change every piece of who you’ve become. You are the embodiment of hope through the heartbreak, pain, and external stressors you’ve encountered. Learning and having these experiences is what life is supposed to be. You experience the good, because you experience the bad. How else would you be able to identify why you feel so content? You only experience heartbreak when you’ve experienced love. The way the good and the bad blend into these complexities is quite beautiful, and something I’ve learned to appreciate. 

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Emilee Roy

U Maine '24

Hi! My name is Emilee and I am a Sophomore Animal and Veterinary Sciences major. I love animals, books, a good Netflix binge, and philosophy podcasts.
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