Anyone ever done that? Written a letter to the former you letting them know all the things you wished you had known at 16 or 21. I’ve contemplated it. I contemplated it this morning actually. Browsing Facebook and Twitter and seeing posts from young people about to make the same mistakes you did can sometimes make you a little crazy. You want to shake them and scream, “STOP! This is a disaster in the making.” But, if someone had done that to me, would I have listened? No. Because people tried and I didn’t. I wasn’t thinking about what was best for me. I was thinking about what I wanted most in the moment. So, perhaps writing a letter to the former you is a waste of time. Maybe we should all be writing letters to our future selves.
As I sit in my office, staring at the ponds, watching my children play underneath the Christmas tree, I wouldn’t change a thing about my past. It led me to this. All of those horribly wrong choices I made got me here. But I can’t pat myself on the back for that one. It’s a miracle I made it here. It was God’s divine work in my life that led me here. I’m blessed to be where I am because if I had been left to my own devices I would not have known this kind of happiness.
This kind of happiness needs to be treasured and nurtured. Who’s to say that I won’t make some horrible decision to screw this up? That’s why I’m contemplating writing a letter to the future me. Where do I see myself in 10 years? What do I want out of the next decade of my life?
Perhaps every major decision I make in the next few years should only be made after reading the letter. Will this choice help me to be the person I want to become in 10 years? Will making the wrong choice derail my future plans? If we all wrote ourselves a letter detailing the life we want, the person we want to be ,would we still fight so hard to hold on to relationships we know are bad for us? Would we continue friendships that we know our toxic? Would we give up what we want most in life for what we want most in the moment? Would we see beyond the immediate to the future?
What would my letter say?
Food for thought this holiday season.