Advice for Your Past Self

Inspired by a conversation with Big Sis about a cousin having her first child, what advice would you give to your past self. Any topic, don’t restrict yourself.

For me, right now, at this moment, it would be this regarding kids; Don’t worry about it, spoil them a little, keep them clean and clothed and fed well and let them be who they are, communicate, always communicate and try hard to do so, even when they say they don’t want to and be consistent about how and what you communicate. Punishment is not discipline, even though it can be a tool in the discipline instilling toolbox

Stop caring what other people think about you!

Stop worrying about things you have no control over. Whatever happens, happens.

I’m not gonna lie. I’d give specific bets to play on specific dates.

Quit being such a naïf, ya putz! (As in, Tra-la-la-la, everyone has my best interests at heart, Tra-la-la-la, my family loves me unconditionally, Tra-la-la-la, it’s a big, bright, wonderful world we live in, etc…)

Ask her out! (he’ll know who)

She’s flirting with you, you clueless dork. Also her. Also her. Lather rinse and repeat.

Cut all relations with Sabine, Thilo and Christoph (specify which one, the other two are clear) immediately, don’t trust them. Beware of aunt Gerlinde’s duplicity and sense of entitlement. She’s gonna cost you and then she’ll be sorry and blame you.
Learn French sooner.

Or sure-fire investment advice. Microsoft. Apple (don’t worry about the rough patch in the 90s; they get through it just fine).

Don’t procrastinate and go to law school or grad school.

Advice? No. Dope-slaps aggressively administered on a daily basis.

Don’t sweat it… it all turns out fine.

Yes, go ahead and tell mom and dad to sell your truck and wire the money to you in Europe, so you can keep traveling for a while more. Who knows where you may go, and with who (wink-wink). Do that instead of going home as scheduled to go back to your job and all those other shackles of responsibility, which will only keep layering-up ever after.

The problem is that the best advice I could offer my past self, I wouldn’t have listened to. The best I can do is give myself a head start on a few practical things that took me ridiculously long to figure out. Like “if you need to reset the garage door opener, just cycle the garage power off and on instead of climbing up on a ladder to hit the reset switch”.

I did something dumb last week that I’d love to take back; otherwise, I’ll keep things status quo, thanks.

Mom is right, start out college at a local 2 year school before moving away.

Velocity, you really need to “get it” in time. (as in, understand concepts or how things work)

Virtually every problem in your life from age 10-34 will stem from not having correctly “got it” in time - things that most other people understand or get intuitively. And it’s going to be a long trail of disaster. That’s why you’re still single, mental health shot to pieces, Chinese-illiterate, little financial savings, few useful skills, sloppy, undisciplined and have few friends at 34.

Enipla - Things will get much, much better when you hit 30yo. Have fun while you can, but, really, don’t sweat it. You will keep your best friends, and the assholes should just be left in the dust. You can’t please everyone.

Somehow, you manage to make the right choices all along the way.

Don’t start smoking! You will avoid a heart attack at 28.

You know that cute girl who invited you to her birthday party in fifth grade? The one who turned out to be the Homecoming Queen? Don’t forget about the party and blow it off - remember to go!

Also, the girl playing footsie with you at the bar has nefarious plans for your body. Take her up on it! Otherwise you’ll be wondering what might have happened…