What Advice Would You Give Your 21 Year Old Self

Would your life be any different if at 21, you listened to the advice the OLDER YOU would have given to the YOUNGER YOU? Many of us have heard statements like  "My dad has always told me..." Maybe it is less about words and more about behavior that leaves an impression on children or grandchildren.  When I think of my mother, it is not so much what she said in terms of words of wisdom but more how she lived and carried herself through life.  The message she conveyed to me is treat people with kindness, don't sweat the small stuff and you are never too old to reinvent yourself. 


Most of us strive to be better over time in terms of how we treat ourselves, the degree to which we mature over time, and the impact we make on others.  

We all want to learn from our mistakes so history doesn't repeat itself but at the same time, our mistakes are also part of our journey to who we are now as a person. I would have cautioned myself NOT to marry some guy I met in Italy who I barely knew just because I thought I was I in love. Yet, however stressful that time was in my life, I did grow from that unfortunate decision.


Changes that we make come from personal growth or the normal evolution as we mature over time. Often, this growth only happens after either going to therapy, experiencing a life changing event or having a spiritual or religious awakening.  When we become of age, many of us have a lot to unpack from our earlier years. We might lack a healthy self-esteem, direction, or self-awareness. Take a moment to congratulate yourself as you reflect on who you are today versus who you were as a young adult.


Of course we can’t go back in time, however, as we reflect on our personal growth, think about advice you would give your younger self. Hello50 wanted to know, based on YOUR life now, what you would tell your 21 year old self?  The question asked on a survey completed by the Hello50 community is really asking us to dig deep, look at our lives now, and think about what we know now that we wish we knew when we were just starting our adult life.  


Here is a sampling of results that were shared with is from the hundreds of women who completed the survey and answered this question:


  • Concentrate on your goals, career, education and well being, drink rarely and place relationships on the back burner.

  • Save money and travel more.

  • You look AMAZING!!

  • Make better choices.

  • Remember to take care of yourself first.

  • Put everything in perspective (don't sweat the small stuff), time will go by much quicker than you think...enjoy every minute of the journey, and save your pennies!

  • Go get therapy! Don’t try to tackle adulthood until you deal with your childhood.

  • Moisturize!

  • Don’t be so quick to make life altering decisions.

  • Wait until you are 30 to get married. By then, you will know what you really want.

  • Work hard and enjoy what you do.

  • Find your supportive people and go for it, never look back.

  • Love yourself just the way you are.

  • Start saving money and don’t do stupid things to impress people you won’t see in 5 years. 

  • Love your body.  It really is pretty amazing.

  • Instead of falling in love, study abroad and travel as much as you can. Do what you’re passionate about, the money will come.

  • Slow down. It’s a marathon, not a sprint.  You will succeed but there is more to life than career pursuits.

  • Learn how to balance your head and your heart. 

  • Be authentic.

  • Ask Grandma more questions.

Share your thoughts.  Does any of this resonate with you? Thinking about YOU at 21, what would you tell yourself?  Would you have even listened to the advice had it been given to you? As we continue building our Hello50 community, we want to hear from women and the journey taken to become the person you are today. It is never too late to learn, grow, inspire others and reach new heights.  Sometimes just taking a moment to travel down memory lane and remember your path to who you are today is a trip worth taking. 


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