As a life-affirming enthusiast I believe that everything happens for a reason. And even from the most painful situations, I’m always confident that fulfilling and happier situations will emerge. I’ve lived across two continents and I’ve traveled to countless countries. I’ve worked in different roles and I am committed to fight for an equal world for girls and women in particular in sport. I’ve gotten to know amazing people and feel the power of love.
Full of all these experiences I wish I could tell my younger self about that. Stuff that’s based on how I thought, felt, and viewed the world at around 20 years old. It could have saved me time, worry, and lots of unnecessary drama. I’d like to find her and say these things, not because I’m unhappy where I am now, but because of the wasted time, wasted emotions, and wasted growth.
Sometimes we forget how amazing it is to simply wake up to a new day and be grateful for being alive. Never take your present day for granted and acknowledge it. You will see how your day changes.
Take More Risks
Nobody walks up to you and lifts the veil on your authentic self. Nor does anybody walk up to you and hand you your dream life. Only you can figure these out. To get there, it’s going to take putting yourself out there and taking risks.
Stop Playing By Other Rules
Most people are front-door people. My 20-year old self was the consummate front door person. Figuring out and playing by the rules. To have success, you simply work within the framework. When the way through front door people don’t succeed, I usually thought it’s the back door people that are keeping them from success. But those aren’t back door successes. They are 3rd door successes. It’s the door you create and walk through that wins you the game. Nobody is keeping you from success, or stealing your success unfairly. You’re just not playing the game according to your winning rule book.
The only thing worth collecting are friends
We have a life, not a career and if I could sit down with my younger self I’d remind me of that. I’ve traveled a lot. But the places I’ve been won’t be what I will remenber when I am old. However, the faces of the people I’ve met will last. If you were to ask most happy people for their “secret” the odds are high their words would be “relationships” “friendships” “community” . These are the things that matter most.
You are beautiful.
I wasn’t confident in my appearance. When I was 13, I developed a chronic illness. My best friend told me then that she found me disgusting. And I assumed that. I thought of myself as ugly, I didn’t feel comfortable in my body. Ultimately none of this matters. When I met people with the same health problems during my cure, my attitude changed. What others think doesn’t matter. Accept and love you. Then the others will accept you, too.
I wish I had known that then and been a more confident person at the time.
Get Comfortable Being Uncomfortable
Expose yourself to emotional danger. I thought the path to success was about finding the path of least resistance. Leadership, entrepreneurship, public speaking, expression of my voice…All things I should have been pursuing with joy, but instead I was running away. I kept my head down, played by the rules, avoided scary, stayed in the framework and tried to never get in trouble. I look back and regret the opportunities I missed or not taken because I was too afraid to take that step.
My advice, try to do one thing every day that scares you.
Learn to embrace change
Shifting circumstances and life changes are a huge part of my growing up life. From becoming a mom to having chronic illness , these changes are challenging. Nothing seems to stay the same for long. Now that I’m a bit older I’m more able to go with the flow and deal with change as it comes.
Positivity is life’s true currency
Bad things are happen to all of us. There will be rainy days and at times it will feel unrelenting. But positive energy is life’s true currency and will help you to push through it. Use your smile. Smiling is probably the most simple thing you can do to reduce stress and boost your immune system. And it’s really difficult to stay angry when you’re smiling. Smile more even if it’s for no reason.
Don’t take things too personally.
I’m a very sensitive person. I often take things very seriously and personally. I think my younger self would be much better off if she wasn’t so sensitive. Taking things personally have made me a more empathetic person but it caused me a lot of stress as well.
Live in the NOW
While you brew coffee or run through the forest, take some time to breathe. Connect with the present moment and savor it. Smell your coffee. Touch your surroundings. Heighten your awareness levels by truly opening yourself up to your five senses.
Don’t be afraid to dream BIG
Taking risks and dreaming big is the only way to change anything or have success. So get to it! Dreaming big is an important part of success. Let your voice be heard and taken seriously. Don’t live life in the corner of a closed door. Open it!
Pulling it together: Choose Yourself
Choosing yourself is about taking action. Taking the action to build and find your authentic self. Your career, and your life, will be what you make of it. So don’t wait around to get started. Do these things…
So go out into the world younger me and always remember if the only thing holding you back from following your dreams is what other people say — don’t listen to them and do it anyway.
- Create something, a new business, a joy or challenge.
- Grow your network with people you love and admire.
- Grow yourself by investing in your skills, relationships, physical health and your emotional and mental well-being.
- Say YES to adventure, take the risk. Embrace the uncertainty.
- Don’t wait around for the right answer. Go find it.
- Fail faster, find the lessons, and keep moving forward. Do the hard stuff. Get stronger and get great at being rejected.
- Don’t take yourself too seriously.
- Find your joy in each day and live your passion.
Don’t wait around and start living your life.