Here’s the things you wish you knew when you were 16.
1. You will recover from your first heartbreak. It won’t feel like it at the time, and you’ll feel like you’re dying inside, but you will get over it. It’s just going to take lots and lots of time, and pizza.
3. You’ll actually have much heartbreak from which you’ll need to recover. And with each one you’ll swear it hurts more than the last, but at least as you get older you’ll realize that you’d rather have the pain of loss than to have never known the happiness of loving that person.
6. You need to find your confidence early in the game. It’s not easy being a teenage girl, and even your 20s will give you a run for your money, but if you can find self-esteem as early as possible, it’s going to make all the difference. You’ll succeed earlier on, because you’ll have the faith in yourself that some women don’t get until their 30s.
7. Sunblock is really important. It’s amazing how fast your skin ages if you skip the sunblock. No one wants to look 50 at 30.
10. College, sorry to say, is totally overrated. Unless you’re going into something that absolutely needs a degree, it’s just four years of partying and a decade or so of college loans after the fact.
11. Grad school is even more overrated. Again, unless you’re going on to be a doctor, psychologist, or something similar, don’t bother. No one needs a Master’s degree in any liberal arts subject. Unless you can recognize that you’re just trying to avoid the inevitable ― joining the real world― skip it.
13. You will change your mind dozens of times. Whether it’s about politics, religion, or your feelings on plaid, the thoughts you have at 16 will not be the ones you have even five years later.
14. The vote for the green party is a wasted vote. Every college student goes through that phase where they think they can change the world, but the problem is we still live in two party system, so when it comes down to a crucial vote, don’t throw it away on the green party. Just don’t.
16. It could always be worse. If you take a step outside yourself, you’ll realize that your worst days are probably a walk in the park for some of the people in this very tragic world. Never lose prospective.
17. Your parents actually do understand you. Breaking news: Mom and dad were teenagers once, too, and they’ve been there and done that. It’s easy to feel misunderstood in your teens (20s and beyond), but you’re not the first or the last to feel this way. In fact, join the club.
18. Going to bed is actually really cool. Or at least your body is going to think so at 8AM.
19. Building your life around someone else will get you nowhere. Whether it’s a partner, a lover, friend, or a boss who has you by the ovaries, you need to build your life for you and you alone. You also need to do it so it’s strong enough to still be standing when you’re rolling solo.
20. Don’t spend so much time worrying about your weight. You’re never going to be completely happy with your body, because no one is, so worrying about your weight is fruitless. Since this is the truth, always order dessert.
21. Yes, you will become your mother. It’s the age-old adage that all women become their mother eventually, and it’s actually true. But you’ll realize that that’s not a bad thing at all. In fact, as you get older, she just might become your best friend.