Now that I’m an adult or whatever, I had to go through a series of reality checks. You’re not automatically given the perfect life, even if you’re smart, hilarious and gorgeous (if I may say so myself!). The fabulous life you dreamt about as a young girl is actually exhausting. Going to parties, planning and paying for killer vacations, making tons of new girlfriends and dinners out every weekend can be exhausting. Worst of all, little birds don’t flit around singing and playing with your hair as you brush your teeth!
Life is not fair. I mean, is it fair that Bambi’s mother died? That doesn’t mean being *in Beyonce voice* a GROWN woman isn’t magical. I love making my own decisions and seeing how much progress I’ve made as a human. But sometimes I get so caught up in chasing success that I start focusing on the past and what I could have done differently. I don’t condone unhealthy thinking like that, it’s just the perfectionist in me. Here are the top 7 things I wish I did when I was younger:
I’ve been artistic, linguistic, and scientific since I was younger. I never really had to work to get an A so I may have had a large comfort zone, but I never truly applied myself to something I found hard (like computer sciences, polo, gymnastics…). I thought that failing meant losing, and that being a failure meant you were going to be poor for the rest of your life! I wish I knew that failure shapes your character. It helps you develop and come out stronger than before. Failure is priceless. You don’t know what you can accomplish until you put yourself out there.
Whenever I think about the thousands I’ve spent on cheap makeup, bejewelled jeans, and 7/11 bulk candy I could cry. These are thousands I could have invested. A healthy stock portfolio will stay with you. Apple bottom neon orange short shorts will not. If you’re still in your teens, please. Do yourself a favor and start investing!
Took more pictures.
I’m a 90s baby, so my mom documented my childhood with albums and albums of overalls and braids. When I moved in with my dad and killer whale of a bitch ex-stepmom at 13, it was a different story. I have some candid shots with friends here and there, but I was so involved in many of my most memorable moments that there was no one there to record them.
Had a job.
I was lucky enough to be quite financially supported as a teen, and as a result I never got a job. Instead, I always had my nose in a book. I recently read a study about how high school students who work, even part time, have higher levels of confidence than fellow students who wait to join the workforce. Maybe I’d be less socially awkward if I worked instead of reading Voltaire upside down in a pillow fort…
Ditched the negative mean people.
I’ll let you in on a secret: those people never really go away. There will always be someone judgy who has an opinion on your life. But a good way to learn to deal with those people as an adult, is to learn to deal with them when you’re a teen. The quickest, and simplest way? Cut. Them. Out.
The brain develops until the age of 25. That means all those frosted flakes, corndogs and gummy sharks I scarfed down were not helping a sister out. (PS: vegan mom will freak out when she finds out how much crap I ate as a kid). Don’t get me wrong, I’m happy with my IQ, but girrrrrrl, I would love to be happier!
Stood up for myself more.
I was bullied for being too flat chested, too skinny, too black, too much of a teacher’s pet, and a hundred other things when I was younger. Around 16-17 when I started growing out of the “ugly” duckling stage I really found my voice… and my tits. I became quite the little firecracker when it came to standing up for myself. Standing up to someone who is putting you down is actually really empowering. I wish I made a habit of being strong in the presence of intimidating people earlier.
The beautiful thing about coming of age and being fully independent and responsible is that you become aware of a whole new side of yourself. Your possibilities are endless. Now, I chase down my passions with ferocious intensity because I’m so much less afraid to stand out and not conform. I only wish I knew how truly big the world is when I was younger! I’m not perfect by any means of the word but I try my hardest to be a good human, to live a good life and to spread positivity wherever I go. Oh the things I wish I did…but the things I know I’ll do!