A Letter To My Current Self From My Future Self

I love reading those Dear me letter from mature, more sophisticated people writing to their old selves… But they’re too late — and it does nothing, because you can’t go back and change your past.

Here’s the truth, all that advice in those dear younger me letters are false, because those formative younger days when people insisted they worked too many crazy hours, skipped their grandmother’s funeral to launch their new websites, worried too much about everything, barely slept and the ones where they always pushed themselves past their comfort zone are the reason why successful people get to the point where they can write that kind of letter and say — as they always do — that everything works out in the end.

But alas, here’s the advice I wish my future self could tell my current self now and for my current self to actually follow.

Dear current me,

Life is short — despite what your anarchy-loving freshman boyfriend said about life being the longest thing you’ll ever do. Grades don’t actually matter after you graduate university — despite what your guidance counsellor tells you. You’ll have enough money — despite what the current economy and the world is saying now! So relax and stop freaking out about your future and start enjoying being young and healthy, because it won’t last long!

Travel! Travel! Travel! Even if it means you can’t take a summer course. Even if it means you have to ask your employer for time off. Even if it means you have to join a tour group because none of your friends have money to travel. Just do it! You’ll never regret the trips you took. No one ever says on their death bed: “I wish I had travelled less and worked more.”

Splurge — you still have relatively little expenses, why not splurge a bit on something you want before you have kids, a mortgage and car payments to take care of.

Take risks — it’s much easier to do when you have very little on the line, so invest money, or push yourself to learn a new skill, take a tough class, book the ticket to go to Europe, start a company, ask that cute boy/girl out — whatever it is, just try it.

The majority of the things you worry about never come true — and if they do, worrying about it doesn’t change anything.

Stop comparing yourself to others. You are who you are. There’s always going to be someone who is better than you at something, and that’s ok. In fact, it’s better. Surround yourself with people who are stronger, faster, smarter, funnier and kinder than you, because they will make you stronger, faster, smarter, funnier and kinder.

Enjoy! — Life passes by in the blink of an eye, it’s the same story we hear all the time. We’re all freaking out about our future and working towards a better tomorrow, then tomorrow is today, and then it’s yesterday and before you know it you’re retiring and wondering how your life passed you by so quickly. People will try to tell you what’s important in life — family, hard-work, friends, travel, adventure, work, health … But you have to figure out what’s important for you. At the end of the day, there’s only one thing that truly really matters… being happy. That’s it, that’s the best you can hope to get in this life: happiness.

Love,

Your future self

Ps. You don’t marry Zac Efron — so just a suggestion — move on!

Like what you read? Give Julie-Anne Given a round of applause.

From a quick cheer to a standing ovation, clap to show how much you enjoyed this story.