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So as I’m getting a bit reflective as I get older – and I enter my “late twenties” which sounds so grown up even though I don’t feel grown up. I have a lot of “grown up” things though, RENT, bills, debt (eurgh) and actually I know a hell of a lot more than I did when I was a teenager. I wouldn’t change anything from the last ten years from 16 until 26 but if I could go back and tell 16 year old me some things to make the path a little bit easier this is what they would be…..

  • It’s okay to “fail” – I was always quite good academically and had a bunch of accolades to support that so when I upped sticks and made the drastic move of going to Scotland for university it absolutely broke my heart when I messed up. I had the wrong friends, the worst boyfriend and these were all distractions that led me to leaving university and coming home, tail between my legs. This sucked, I got a job in McDonalds too (which whilst isn’t bad at all, it’s THAT stereotype) and I was so bloody embarrassed. However, I picked myself up and brushed myself down and ended up in London which is where I was meant to be
  • The cool kids aren’t always the cool kids – I ended up being friends with a group of people who were “older” and “cooler” when in fact they couldn’t have been less. They enjoyed laughing AT me and not with me and these are never the people you want in your life. The people I’m friends with now are the ones who are older and younger, cool and nerdy, the ones who I’m friends with because of them and now because of some ridiculous desire for popularity and acceptance.
  • It doesn’t matter that the boys at school don’t fancy you – because others will and the majority of them will be pretty cute. They’ll be one screw up but we all need them, the rest of them will make you laugh (and cry) but mostly laugh and you’ll look at some of the boys that never looked at you and not care one iota.
  • CHOOSE P.E – Oh I was so good at it at school, when I was little I was in the running team, I represented the school, I played netball and then when I was in senior school I was put in top group despite the fact I couldn’t swim (which was mandatory) because I was good, despite the fact I didn’t look fit. But there was one kid and oh he was a little shit (and ten years later I STILL HATE HIM) he would verbally attack me nearly every lesson, one time he aimed a ball at my face during rounders, more fool him I caught it and out he went. It was due to said little shit I didn’t choose PE as a GCSE even though I wanted to, and I truly feel if I’d carried on doing sports then my weight may not have got as out as hand as it did.
  • Those girls don’t matter – On the school theme, those girls who made you feel like crap, who made you cry at home, who made you hate yourself – when you’re older you won’t care about them and will always wonder why you didn’t stand up for yourself but at nearly 26 you couldn’t imagine anything less intimidating than those girls.
  • Your morals matter – it doesn’t matter that some people (mostly the ones from above) will laugh at you for having staunch opinions, stick to your guns because your morals and opinions DO matter, your worst decisions will come from derailing on these.
  • It’s okay to say no or to change your mind – This is something I’m still developing the ability to do – to say no, even its something as small as ‘I don’t want to see that film’ your friend wont care and you wont have to see the film you don’t want to see, friends extend to big changes too. As anyone who knows me that actually reads this, I moved to america a while ago….to work at DISNEY WORLD – freaking disney wooooorld, i had a leaving party and everything, then I got there and for a multitude of reasons I hated it – and I was terrified and embarrassed about coming back given I’d made a deal about leaving, but the right people wont care, and wont ever make you feel bad about changing your mind.
  • Credit cards are bad – You don’t know how to save yet, don’t get overdrafts, or credit cards, that aforementioned debt…yeah….
  • Mum does know best – As a teenager i got on with my mum (I still very much do) however there were occasions I disagreed with her and was rude about it – a particularly incident in which I felt a group of people were the right friends and she felt otherwise, this lead to me being disrespectful in a way I hadn’t before – long story short, a tiny psychopath got me arrested. So yeah if only I had listened lol
  • And sometimes it’s okay to disagree with your mum – For years I told people I didn’t like Sandra Bullock or Tom Hanks because my mum didn’t, I moulded a lot of opinions on my mums – purely because i admired her so much, but actually I really like both actors, and that’s okay haha.
  • …..as long as you still respect her – Don’t argue with your mum unnecessarily, don’t swear in front of your mum, listen to your mum – whilst you might disagree sometimes, your mum brought you up – she deserves your respect

I look forward to the things 36 year old Talie can teach 26 year old Talie

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