A Letter To My 16-Year-Old Self

Filled with life lessons that I wish I could share with my 16-Year-Old self. I hope that they will help you navigate the crazy world of high school!

Dear Me,

I know high school is hard. I know that it’s not fair that, that one boy doesn’t love you back. I know that you do have true friends. But most of all… I know that you will be okay. You will find exactly where you’re supposed to be, and the right people will surround you. Keep following your dreams and don’t give up on yourself because you’re truly a work of art. Here are five things I wish I could’ve told you.

Thing I Wish I could’ve told you

School –

Your grades are important, but they do not define you. Relax. You don’t need every single mark to be over 90% to be successful. You will literally be a ball of stress if you do not let go of this idea of being perfect. Do your best but for the love of God take care of yourself. I promise you that your grades are not the most important thing about you. (P.S. That advanced course really doesn’t mean a lot at the end of the day.)

Friends –

You will find out who your real friends are when times get tough. Only surround yourself with people who build you up and support you. Women who try to tear you down and compete with you are not true friends. Let them go now. Surround yourself with kind, strong, independent, ambitious women. I promise this will make the world of difference. Don’t get hung up in the hierarchy of high school popularity. Be friends with the people who treat you well. Period.

Relationships –

Your first relationship will have your head spinning and your heart pounding, it will be amazing. I couldn’t have asked for a better first boyfriend. He treated me incredibly well and I will forever be grateful for the respect that he showed me. He was a good one and I messed up, but that’s okay. However, there will always be that other boy who doesn’t want to date you but also doesn’t want you to date anyone else… he’s not worth your time. I know you love him and always will but please let him go. He didn’t just break your heart; he stomped on it, crushed it and somehow left you running back to his side no matter what. Don’t let him treat you like that. You’re far too intelligent, kind and strong to be treated as if you’re nothing. You’re beautiful, and no boy or relationship has the power to determine your worth. Live your life – your way! One day he will come, and he will be everything you imagined. Always respect and love yourself first. (I’m still waiting on this one haha)

Family –

Always be there for your family. Please don’t be embarrassed when your mom hugs you before school or when your dad talks to your boyfriend. They love you, and they care about you so much. Time is precious, and you never know how long you have with those you love. Respect them, love them and don’t lose sight of their importance in your life. Tell them you love them as much as possible. Text them when you get home from that party. Always check in, it means the world to them.

Dreams –

Don’t let anyone tell you that your dreams aren’t valid. If you want to be an artist, don’t listen to the infinite amount of teachers that will tell you that the sciences are the only way to make a living. Since when did it all come down to money? In my opinion, happiness is so much more important. Follow your passions and you will find a career that makes you excited to get out of bed each day. Please don’t ever settle. You have so much talent. You can do this!

I believe in my younger self. Don’t lose your endless sense of wonder. When you see that something is wrong, please don’t be a bystander. Stand up for what’s right. Explore the world. Follow your dreams. Volunteer. Give Back. Stay Humble. Love yourself. Be strong. And eat that damn piece of chocolate cake.

Love always,

Your older self


P.S. Share a smile with a stranger on the street. Everyone is going through something you know nothing about.

14 thoughts on “A Letter To My 16-Year-Old Self

  1. Excellent advice that teens can follow …Great that you can reflex on your passed. Smile open many door and yes I agree share smile with someone today.

  2. Oh my goodness there are oh so many things that I would tell my 16 year old self. Thankfully as someone who teaches teens I am able to share my wise words with them.

  3. Wish we could all talk to her 16-year-old self. Boy would there be a lot that I would love to tell myself.

  4. These words are so true and I feel like I would write a very similar letter to my 16-year old self!

  5. That’s really nice. I love the idea because it gives you a good grip of how much you’ve matured throughout the years of being out of high school. Awesome.

  6. This is great advice to your younger self. So many new things hit you around that age and nothing really prepares you.

  7. There are so many things I wish I could go back and tell my teenage self. Most involving relationships and dreams. This is a great letter and post!

  8. There are a lot of things I wish I had known at 16. Being sixteen seems like the hardest thing in the world at the time.

  9. We could all write a letter to our younger selves but would any of us listen? The lessons we learnt through some of those misguided decisions are part of what made us the people we are today. Learning that we are capable of surviving hardship is part of growing up.

  10. There are so many things I’d tell my 16 year old self. The first would be to slow the heck down. By the time I was 19 I was married to a much older man, and while I love my children, I wish I could go back and never made that decision.

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