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A Message to My Younger Self

It’s so interesting to look back and see how many things stay the same. Far more fascinating, however, is how much things change.

I always say that the older I get the less I know for sure. That’s certainly true. But earlier this week we were at our small group and the question was asked: What is one piece of advice you would give your younger self? 

My first answer was: TRUST THE JOURNEY. Because here’s the deal. Every single one of us has seasons and circumstances we wish we could change. We may go through trials and tests we wish we never had to face. We might struggle and stammer our way through and look back and wish we would’ve been stronger. Braver. Better. But here’s one thing I know: I had to go through every false start and every ridiculous fail to get to where I am right now. And I’m grateful for every bit of it.

Tell my younger self BQ-3

2. RELAX. At a wellness retreat I discovered my body was bound with emotion and tension critically impeding my growth. There’s no skirting around the fact that I’m driven, ambitious, competitive and highly achievement oriented but I’m learning to practice peace and surrender. I’m learning to stop rushing things that need time to grow. To stop trying to fix things that want to stay broken. It’s okay to go slow and to celebrate small. My friend always says: “Life is big in the little.” She’s so right.

3. BREATHE. The best things aren’t complicated, they’re simple. Sometimes the perfect solution to your biggest problem is to breathe. I found my new favorite piece of jewelry a few weeks ago. It’s a simple leather cuff inscribed with the words: Breathe. Open your heart. Relax. It’s my new solution to everything.

4. GO FIRST. They say the first to apologize is the bravest; the first to forgive is the strongest; and the first to forget is the happiest. Be first. 

5. BELIEVE. You will become what you believe. Fear is a liar; Perception is an illusion; Limitation is in the mind. Believe, and it will be. You can do anything.

I always look back with a little bit of a giggle at the things that once got me all riled up. The difficulties that now seem so trivial. The truth is we can give our old selves and others as much advice as we have words — but the reality is we all have to weather the journey exactly the way we do. The lessons meant for us can only be learned that way. But if I could tell myself a few things, assuming I would even listen, that is what I’d say. Trust the journey. Relax. Breathe. Go first. And believe.

And perhaps I’d say, “it’ll be okay.” What would you tell your younger self?

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{ 1 comment… add one }
  • Ashlee June 17, 2016, 2:48 pm

    I can add two–Trust the promises of God for your own life, not everyone elses first, and having a tender soft heart is the bravest posture to live our lives from, it’s not easy, but it’s far from weak. Hugs!

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