Letter to my Sixteen Year Old Self

Dear Gen


Happy birthday! Sweet sixteen and never been kissed, right? I know it seems like a big deal now, but seriously. When you leave school you’ll realise no one cares whether you were 12 or 18 when you had that elusive “first kiss”. It’ll happen when it’s supposed to, don’t give it one thought or think less of yourself because you think everyone’s been kissed but you.

I’m writing this letter as your 25 year old self, trying to impart some of the things I’ve learned over the last 9 years. You probably wont listen, but it’s worth writing any way. So here’s what I want you to know…

It is ok to not have hundreds of friends. A small group of close friends is more important than a huge group of acquaintances. Quality over quantity, always. Your friends will change too. People grow, either together or apart, and that’s ok. Don’t hold on to relationships that no longer make you happy, and be open to forming new friendships.

Look after your body. Remember that you are not defined by a number on a scale or the size of your pants. Stop dieting, stop comparing your body to other’s, stop stressing about how you look. Instead focus on nourishing your body with healthy foods, find an exercise you enjoy and appreciate the fact that you have a body that works. Also; first year spread is a real thing. Stay away from the giant spring rolls and Chelsea buns.

Learn now that is is impossible to please everyone. In fact, the only person you should try to make happy is yourself. Don’t say yes to everyone, don’t let people walk all over you and don’t ever place anyone’s happiness above your own. It is ok to be selfish sometimes.

Perfection is a goal which is never attained. You can’t do everything, and if you try you will exhaust yourself. Remember too that no one expects you to be perfect.

Make travelling a priority. It makes you happy, it teaches you about yourself and others, and will give you memories to cherish forever.

Family is important.

You don’t have to cry so much when Ryan leaves, he comes back.

Don’t overpluck your eyebrows! In fact, don’t even touch them. Get someone who knows what they’re doing to do it for you. Eyebrows are important, and in 2014 big eyebrows are a big thing.

Never, ever, ever mix wine and vodka. It never ends well.

Be kind. Be honest. Be humble. Always.

Lastly, love yourself. Believe in yourself, you can do and be anything you want.

Love, G


8 thoughts on “Letter to my Sixteen Year Old Self

  1. Gen, that was so beautiful. Your beautiful advise rang so true even to 24 year old me let alone 16 year old me. The part about the eyebrows- genius πŸ˜‚πŸ˜‚ everyone knows you don’t let someone with bad eyebrows tell you shit about life. Awesome read πŸ’•πŸ˜˜πŸ‘


  2. Wisdom from the youth- a great piece Gen – you continue to present such gentle guidance – it is a strength you have always had and made a wonderful head girl to work with. Keep up the great advice.


  3. This is so wonderful Gen! πŸ™‚ I’m sitting at work over here in NZ and laughing out loud and finding what you have written so very relevant. I’m glad that I came across this. I hope things are well for you! x


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