THE BLOG
06/26/2014 10:23 am ET Updated Dec 06, 2017

A Letter to My 10-Year-Old Self

Yagi Studio via Getty Images

I love the thought of time travel, especially traveling along the course of my own life. I think it's got a lot to do with recognizing how much my life has changed -- from who I was and what I expected as a 10-year-old to who I've become and how my expectations have changed.

Inspired by Soul Pancake, as I so often am, I wrote a letter to my 10-year-old self.

Candace,

Hi, I'm your 30-year-old self. Don't freak out, I know I seem really old, but listen to me for a minute -- mum was right, as you get older you really do get wiser. Here are a few things I've learned so far that I'd like to share with you for the coming years (especially high school):

  1. Don't sweat the small stuff. And almost everything is small.
  2. Don't be a b*tch. You know you have it in you, but don't make it who you are.
  3. Forget about being the best at something. Try to experience lots of different things instead and share your stories with others.
  4. Love is transient. That romance you're hoping for? It's fleeting, and when it's over, you have to try harder to feel love and be loved. Your first real love will eventually come to an end and you won't be the same again. When it's over, be kind... he's hurting too.
  5. Read widely. Through reading you will become a better writer, and writing will open a world of opportunities you can't even imagine are possible right now.
  6. Value your education. Don't waste time in class, do your homework, try harder, don't talk when the teacher is talking (you'll learn just how frustrating this is soon enough... did I mention you're a teacher?), and never give up on your dreams.
  7. When someone is cruel, treat them with kindness. Sure, they may not be a good person, but they may just be having a bad day, and their poor behavior isn't an excuse for yours.
  8. Fight your introversion to make friends. Although not all of them will stick around, your true friends will stand by you during the hard times and share in lots of the good times too.
  9. Tell your family you love them at every opportunity and say it like you mean it. You will soon learn the pain of losing someone special, and you will always regret not telling them one last time.
  10. Spend time with your little sister. She may be annoying now (trust me, she feels the same way), but you'll grow to become the best of friends. She is smart, she is strong, she is your rock and she won't always be in the room across the hallway.
  11. Learn to love yourself. You are a good person. You may not be pretty like the other girls or as smart as you'd like to be, you may not have a lot of friends or be really good at something, but you have plenty of time to shape the person you want to be. Love yourself throughout the journey, I'll thank you for it later.

Love always,

Candace

P.S. I know you don't like your name at the moment, but you will grow into it, trust me.

2014-05-27-letter_huffpo.jpg

Caption: Writing in the journal by Erin Kohlenberg licensed under CC BY 2.0.

What advice would you give your 10-year-old self? Please share it in the comments section below.