7 Lessons for
Your Younger You

7 Lessons for Your Younger You

You might have seen one of these posts on Facebook [or somewhere else on the web]: ‘If you could write a note to your younger self, what would you say?’

Interesting concept. What would you tell your 16-year old self with the wisdom you possess now?

At 16 I was like many kids at that age: a mixture of ‘I know it all’ on the outside and total immaturity on the inside. Everything and every decision seemed important, yet honestly I didn’t have a clue who I was. In reality, I was just a girl who struggled with the changes of her body, peer pressure and the divorce of her parents, amongst other things. Yeah, I was that kinda girl.

Do you ever wish you could go back and comfort your 16-year old you? Give her some perspective, help her avoid some mistakes and somehow assure her that she will be okay?

Here are seven lessons that I know now, but wish I would have known then [though, according to my mother, I probably wouldn't have listened to anyway...].

Don’t base your self worth on anyone else

Don’t rely on someone else for your happiness and self worth. Only you can be responsible for that. Accept who you are. Completely! The good and the bad. Make changes as YOU see fit, and not because someone else wants you to be different! Don’t let someone else’s perception of you become how you see yourself [[unless s/he thinks you are absolutely fabulous!].

Let go of expectations

Release whatever expectations you have. Always be open to the possibilities. When things do not go according to plan, look at it as an opportunity to experience something different, to learn something new. Things definitely don’t turn out how you thought. Learn to love that!

Choose to be happy

Happiness has nothing to do with wearing the right kind of jeans, having the right boyfriend or with who you hang out with. Don’t let your happiness depend on external factors. Happiness is an inside job. You don’t need anyone to make you happy. That’s your job and yours alone. When you are happy with who you are, when you are happy in your own skin, you will no longer worry about all the nonsense. Forgive yourself, befriend yourself, accept yourself, and love yourself.

You can’t please everyone

You can’t please everyone, so stop trying! Live your way. Stop worrying about what other people think. Don’t buy things you don’t need with money you don’t have to impress people you don’t even like, all because you think you must be liked by everyone.

Don’t let others dampen your passion

People will try to discourage you. Don’t let them. Be confident and believe in yourself. Don’t be afraid of not succeeding. Be more afraid of NOT trying and living with regret. If you fall, pick yourself up, and keep moving forward. IN about twenty some years, you’ll be saying this to your kids a lot too…

You will mess up and it will be okay

You will do some stupid things. You will be so scared that you may think it would be better if you just disappeared, ran away, or even died, anything so you won’t have to face it. You are wrong. Those frightening, stomach knotting, soul shaking moments are the ones that will define who you are. They will give you a strength that never leaves you. You will overcome and you will be stronger and better for it.

Don’t ignore red flags

If you feel that something really isn’t right, you are right. Don’t ignore those red flags. Trust your gut. A gut reaction is something that is primal and real, and it is not followed as often as it should be. Gut reactions are some of the most important emotions we possess. Don’t ignore them or push them away. It may be uncomfortable to try and follow these vague signals you feel, but when you start to act on them, you can radically shift your world for the better.


‘Sharing is caring!’
Now it is your turn!
What would you like to say to your 16-year old you?
Please share your wisdom below in the comment box!
Thank you!

Mirjam Stoffels

Founder of seven2success, author of ‘Daily Little Secrets to Success’ and guest blogger at Project Eve and 365 dagen succesvol. In my mission to make seven2success the biggest platform of knowledge and inspiration for women, I want to inspire you with our content! Check us out on Facebook and Twitter! I’d love to connect!  And do you want to inspire other women? Write for us!

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  1. Hoi Mirjam,

    Goed artikel. Wat ik tegen mijn 16-jarige ik zou willen zeggen:
    laat de onzekerheid maar varen, die kom je veel vaker tegen in je leven, maar is niet nodig! Neem je beslissing op dat moment en was het een foute, jammer. Meestal is het wel de goede.
    Liefs, Mariska

    • Mirjam Stoffels

      Thank you for stopping by, Mariska!
      It seems that insecurity is a fact of life when you’re 16, so that is a very good advice you would give your 16-year old self.

  2. Nice subject Mirjam… with an upcoming 16 year old in tha house.
    To my own 16-year I want to say: Go for life! Do things, try stuff. I was to insecure to even try. Glad I grew up ;-)

    • Mirjam Stoffels

      A 16-year old in the house… that is a new challenge! As long as we remember how we were at that age and as long as we keep communicating [although it may seem that they don't listen] it will be okay, I think. Insecurity, figuring yourself and the world out, that’s what it’s all about at 16 [even though we pretended to know it all already]. And yes, eventually we all grow up [and think 'What my mom said seems to make sense...'].

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