I look back to even the start of this year and think to myself, Nicole, was that really you? did you really do that or think that? Life goes by fast and the decisions you make not only shape how your life turns out, but also the people who you have around you.
Whilst I was in Greece this year visiting my family, I met a girl called Maxine. We shared similar ideas of men and I guess we talked about life a lot, as corny as it sounds. She really inspired me to get personal with my posts. In London we went and visited a Buddhist garden and discussed future ideas of what we were going to write about, she mentioned an idea of "things I would tell my younger self" and since that day the idea never left my head. If I had known half the stuff I know now, I would have made better decisions and saved myself a lot of stress. Easier said than done but this is what has bought me to writing this particular blog.
I work with many young girls and sometimes laugh to myself about the things they stress about. I laugh yet, that used to be me. So here it is, if I was to go back, this is what I would tell myself, take note.
1. People's opinions are just that, opinions: I grew up in a small town where everyone knows everyone and everyone assumes they know your life better than you do. I used to care so much what people thought of me and it affected the way I lived my life. I tried to please people and wanted to prove that I was worthy, when really the only person's opinion that matters in life, is your own. People's opinions don't affect how long you live, how you live or how much you have, remember that when you think it matters that people talk about you.
2. Being popular in school is irrelevant to your life: In the real world, none of that matters. As soon as you get out of the bubble and you start to live in reality where you have to earn a living to survive and meet people from all different walks of life, no-one cares whether you won hottest girl at the year 12 formal. It's not going to give you success in life, hard work and being a good person will though.
3. People don't change: You should never try and change a person or hope they will change. They won't. They might change their attitude, actions or how they feel but at the end of the day they are who they are. They might change for a year, a month or a week but the real person is always revealed in the end. If you can't handle certain things about a person, clear them from your life, simple.
4. Everything happens for a reason: Sounds cliche but it's true. Every knock back, break up, loss of job, every single thing that happens, shapes your life for the future. You might not know it today or next year but when I look back at the big events in my past when I literally thought my life was over, I sit back and realise it was making room for something better and more suited to my life.
5. Airing dirty laundry on social media is never a good idea: Not even sure if My Space even exists now as that was the only social media I used back in my teens, but I would cringe if I had to look at anything personal I had posted on there in my past. You can find anything by just googling these days, and sharing details of your cheating boyfriend or the fight you had with your best friend to the world is probably not going to go down well to a future employer.
6. It's never too late to start again: In Australia, or maybe it's just in my home town, there is so much pressure to be married young, have kids, have a house and have a good job. I thought by now at 27 this would be my life and I put pressure on myself for it to be and fortunately for where I'm at in my life, it's not. You don't need to be doing it because everyone else is, if you decide you want to quit your job at 30 and travel or study it is ok. Life is for living, not to feel stuck. There is no rush.
7. Be in the now: As Eckhart Tolle would say. The present moment is all that matters. You can't predict your future and you never know what could happen. Enjoy every last minute and leave the stress of planning for when it really matters.
8. If something is meant to be in your life, it will be: Friends, boyfriends, you name it. If a person is meant to stay in your life, they will. You can't force someone to love you or want to be around you and can attach yourself to things. Have enough self respect to know this.
9. Loving someone and loving the idea of someone are different things: So many people jump from one relationship to the next these days. Admittedly that used to be me. I liked the idea of some people but the reality was, I didn't love them. Know the difference.
10. Fear is a myth: I've always been scared of a few things- ghosts, public speaking (who would have thought with my big mouth) and what people thought of me. I'm still scared of ghosts, that probably won't change anytime soon but the moment you take a step out of your comfort zone is when you start living the life you deserve.
11. Your parents are your biggest supporters: I never believed this when I was younger but after everything that has happened over the past few years, it has become so clear. Your parents are the most important people in the world, so cut them some slack.
12. Its not the amount of friends you have that counts, it's the quality of them: I do still have a lot of friends in my life, but one thing I have realised are the ones who actually have my back. At the end of the day it's quality not quantity.
13. Always be yourself: Because there is no-one like you. Be proud of who you are, whether people like it or not. Don't try and change for anyone or conform to be like anyone else. It is a beautiful thing to be happy with you are and do what makes you happy.
I know this post won't relate to every single person as everyone has a different life and a different story, but for me, these are my experiences and what I have learnt so far. You learn something new about life everyday, but remember to take it on board.
Enough from Eat, Pray, Love Wannabe here, I hope you enjoyed X