Letter To Younger Me
As I turn 34 today, I thought of sharing some nuggets of wisdom to my young readers, things that I have picked up along the way that I wish someone had hammered in my head. If you’ve ever wondered why I always have so much on my plate and how I juggle it all, it’s mostly because I feel like I wasted my twenties and I am trying to make up for that time. Here’s some advice to my younger self, and all you young-ins out there.
Set clear goals early and have a solid plan towards meeting them. For instance, don’t just intend to do your Masters at some point, but be clear that you want to be done with your Masters before you turn a certain age, and work towards the financing aspect. Or perhaps if you dream of owning a home someday, don’t just think about it and hope that the stars will someday align. Get yourself a job in a bank where mortgages are cheap, or work hard and ensure your salary grows fast enough to be able to afford a construction loan or a mortgage. You see all those high achievers out there? They didn’t get there by flux. They planned, they worked hard, they pushed the envelope. You cannot just exist and expect great things to happen to you.
Speaking of goals, your twenties are great for so many things but most importantly, for advancing your education. Take all those professional certifications that will add value to your career. Do your masters. Do your PHD if you are those eternal scholars. Your absorption rate will never be this high, that I can promise you. In your thirties, you will struggle to read text messages, let alone do your thesis.
That said, do not be too serious about life. Have fun, lots of it. Take random classes like Salsa or Kick Boxing. Learn Mandarin or Italian. Heck you can even take pole dancing classes. The point is, you have so much time on your hands and you don’t need to seek anyone’s opinion or approval to venture into anything you wish. Use this time wisely.
You know what else is great about being young and free? You can travel the world. Your budget might be a constraint, but who says you can’t start small? You can hop into a 2NK mat on a Saturday to Nanyuki and take a hike through Ngare Ndare Forest or visit the conservancy at Ol Pejeta. You could get into a Mololine mat, pitch tent at one of those camps in Naivasha and have breakfast with the Hippos. Or you could even just head to Ngong with your friends and have a picnic at Ngong Hills overlooking the windmills. There are endless opportunities, so please, kill that pity party and make use of the little resources you have.
Save! Save! Save! It doesn’t matter how many responsibilities you have, trust me, they keep getting bigger and more burdensome. You know how your pension is deducted and you can’t access it, or how the taxman is first to get his dues no matter what obligations you have? Same logic. Have that one savings account where you push a certain percentage of your income and forget about it. It will come in handy in future.
Have a mentor. Preferably an older person who you look up to, whose achievements give you the conviction that it is possible to achieve greatness. Because no matter how disciplined or focussed you are, sometimes you may be unsure of some decisions in life. Like whether to pursue accounting or fashion styling. By the way, will accountants be relevant in the next 20 years? Your mentor has been there and probably seen some jobs go extinct. Your mentor will provide the clarity that you may sometimes miss.
You will fail severally, at many things. You will fail to hit your target weight because you of your struggles to keep you portions small and clean. You will fail to get the perfect grades. You will fail at making a great speech on your first attempt, even your tenth maybe. You will fail at being the perfect partner. Fail all you can, just don’t wallow in your misery after failing. Pick yourself up, try again and make sure you fail less at your next attempt. Stars are made, they are never born.
And now that we are on the partner storo, please don’t stress about that person you crush so hard on who has zero regards for your feelings. He is not worth it!! You may not hear me now, because you are entirely consumed by your emotions, and you will probably want to make excuses for that horrible person. But trust me on this, somewhere along the way, you will in deed learn that there are genuinely amazing human beings in this world. People who mean and want nothing but the best for you. You know how to attract such? Stop taking bullshit. You attract what you project.
Life is what you make it. It can be exhilarating or dispiriting, fast paced or bleak. Do not for one minute allow yourself to sink into complacency. YOU are in charge of your own destiny. Map it out and seek greatness while at it.
Cheers to a mind-blowing life!
P.S. This time I don’t have a list of gifts that I am hoping for. I only ask that you drop a comment with the one piece of advice that you would give your younger self or one you would share with an older person. I want to read the comments and feel wiser today.
Also, from next Tuesday I will be taking a break from the blog but I have great content lined up for you. I have inspiring and informative stories that will run, as shared by the protagonists themselves. Don’t worry, I will ensure the stories are interesting and well written, and once in a while I might make an appearance. I am taking a break to focus on my exams and will officially be back on 22nd June.
Be kind to my guest writers 🙂