Tuesday, March 20, 2012

Repeats and Do-Overs

Recently, an acquaintance of mine made the statement, "If I had  "it" to do all over again I would do everything exactly the same."  HHHMMMM...could that be true?  OR do they mean given the same knowledge that they had at the time they did "it ....whatever it was...in the first place, that they would most likely repeat "it" again.

I was just over at We Work For Cheese and Nicky was weighing in on what she might say to her 16 year old self.  If you haven't ever read her blog, you should as she is super funny...smart funny.

Thought #1.. The things I would tell my young self

I would have a lot to say to my 16 year old self but first I would have to convince her that I was, indeed....HER.  I just didn't become a skeptic, yesterday.  I have been perfecting my suspicious, "look at it from all angles" persona since birth.  I am sure 16 year old Cheryl is incredulous that she could have gotten THAT OLD!

Here are some of the things I would suggest to my 16 year old self as she is suspiciously eyeballing my wrinkles and thinking to herself that I could have done a much better job with moisturizers.

Ten things I would tell the 16 year old Cheryl P.  (there would of course be a gazillion things but for the sake of expediency let's just pick out a few)       

drummmmm  rooollllllll ....and ....IN NO PARTICULAR ORDER

1.  (Sidebar: At 16, I was one year away from getting engaged and 2 years away from getting married)  I would tell my 16 year old self " Go ahead and get married.  Ignore the naysayers that tell you it can't work because you are too young. They are right of course...you are WAY too young but it will work out fine. You might want to spend less on the wedding.  You could buy a house with that same amount of money. That won't always be true.

2.  Have more fun.  Don't worry all the time and try not to be so serious.

3.  There is a little 24  store chain located only in Arkansas called Wal-Mart that has been around for about 6 years. I know that you  probably haven't even heard about yet.  When you do, buy some stock as soon as it is available.  Same goes for Apple, Google and Yahoo.  You won't hear about them for awhile as they haven't been created  yet but when they are...buy, buy, buy....as much as you can.  Oh...and buy some gold.  At around $39.00 an oz. it may not seem like a bargain, but it is.

4.  Don't take your young healthy body for granted.  You are going to get older and with age comes changes.   Get an early start on eating right and exercising. The days that you are able to wear  mini skirts and hip huggers are numbered.  You might still fit into them but they won't look good.  Gravity is not your friend.

5.  Recognize that you are going to live through thousands of trends.  Most of them amount to zip. Today's fashion is tomorrow's garbage.  Buy smart, classic and well made. 

6.  Cherish the important things like your family, friends. AND be prepared...you are going to have losses. Heart breaking losses.... You aren't immortal and neither are the people you care about.

7.  Young self, you are going to have a good life...a really good life.   Be grateful for it. It could have gone the other way.  You are, also,  going to have a wonderful family...look forward to it.

8.  Pay closer attention to things.  You will have trouble remembering a lot things, both big and small,  that you will want to remember. While some of it might be chucked to a bad memory, some of it is was you weren't 100% paying attention.

9. Spend less time trying to please other people and spend more time trying to please yourself.  Worry less about what other people think of you and try to act in a manner that you can respect yourself.

10.  Recognize you are going to become the person that you now think of as ancient. You will become a  cynic, overly cautious, and have a tendency to be a bit pessimistic.  But even with those qualities in play, you are going to be happy.  You will be content with the way things are going at least up to the point of your 2012 self.   Your life will be  way less WHAAA WHAAAA

AND way more WOOT WOOT!!!!

Thought # 2 Realize you can't really go back and undo the things you did wrong and try to make peace with that.

I have made more than my share of mistakes. I don't think most of  my blunders were life changing for me or for the people around me. But who knows?  Maybe something I did, changed the course for someone else in a negative way. 

So to my adult self, I would like to think in the future, that my blunders are small.  As for the things that I shouldn't of said or done, I can't go back but I can be remorseful for my lack of sensitivity, my lack of respect or my poor judgement. 

Here's a video that is talking about serious regrets.

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meleahrebeccah said...

I loved your list of things you'd tell your 16 year old self! Well done! Well done indeed.

Thechubbychatterbox said...

I also liked your list, especially the things I should have invested in, but the sixteen year old Chubby Chatterbox was not inclined to accepting advice any more than the current one is. Unfortunate, but there you have it.

Cheryl P. said...

I would hope that I would pay attention to my older self. I had my head in the clouds, thinking that I had my life all mapped out and it would be perfect.

Cheryl P. said...

I think most people would say they would change much even if given the chance. I think I might have. I was pretty much on my own by then and I think I would have loved some input by an adult.

meleahrebeccah said...

I certainly wouldn't listen to ANY adult when I was 16.

Nicky said...

Oh, I am so glad you decided not to scrap this! It's fantastic and now I feel kind of silly about my post. Your words are not just good advice for your 16 year old self, but for anyone at any age. And thank you for the nice things you wrote about me... the cheque is in the mail. :-)

Wolfbernz said...

Hi Cheryl,

Yes, there's really no reason to wish or want to go back and try to redo things or change the way things happened. It is what it is. But, it doesn't hurt to reflect on what one has done in the past to make life better and help make good decisions in the future.


Trina said...

Oh what I'd tell my 16 year old self... Grundge isn't a permanant style, Nirvana will fade away while classics like Bob Dylan, Billy Holiday, and Bob Marley will become some of your favorites. You will love being on the water. After 27 you will actually get better at playing sports. Take it easy on the underage drinking, it's way better in a pub. Smoking in the High School bathroom isn't a claim to fame, but lung cancer in the waiting and you will respect that soon.

Great post!

redheadranting said...

#3 for sure. And #6... well, I don't think I would want to know about the coming losses. They were bad enough without knowing they were coming. I don't think I could have prepared for them any better. In fact, knowing I was going to face some monumental losses might have made me scared to live any life at all. And with that, I realize I haven't taken enough risks because while there has been monumental loss there hasn't been much of it.

Cheryl P. said...

Are you serious, all your posts are soooo entertaining. Love them!!! Silly girl!!!

Cheryl P. said...

I think I would want to go back for a visit to various stages of my life if such a thing were possible. As it is not, I have to accept all the things that I have no power to change. I always wonder about people that say they have NO regrets. Either they are really callous or have cause to be canonized. I agree with you maybe the best we can do is reflect on our past mistakes and try hard not to repeat.

Cheryl P. said...

I would love to see a post from you on this subject. Just that little bit was so fun to read. Funny stuff.

Cheryl P. said...

I think for some people it might serve them well to not think about mortality and they should feel fearless when they are 16.

But if my older self was going to be helpful to my 16 year old self she would have issued a warning to get things wrapped up. I had already lost a parent by that time. With one parent left, I probably needed a bit of a push to remind me to keep the lines of communication open and work on keeping connected. As it turned out my remaining parent died young and suddenly. I don't feel like I said or did all the things that I woulda', coulda' shoulda' said or done.

oldereyes said...

I love this post. it's exactly the kind of post I like to write. If it wasn't so late, I'd offer a few of my own. Somewhere down in the bowels of my blog, I probably already have. Thanks.

Cheryl P. said...

Thank you, Bud. I would be interested in your list of what you would say to you 16 year old self. Yesterday, I downloaded the book that was released last year that started this theme, Dear Me by Joseph Galliano. The book is comprised of 75 letters from asst. celebrities, authors, musicians etc. on what they would say. Seemingly no two people look at this question in quite the same way. Again...I would be really interested in yours.

Jayne G said...

Ha. Hindsight is 20/20, but what we get in our mature years, aside from reconciling w/past mistakes, is a very sharp insight--which very few, if any, 16 year old selves could possibly have. Those young years are precisely for making mistakes. And if we're lucky enough to live through them all, well, at least we can look back at our 16 years old selves and say, Damn, I had a helluva time making those mistakes.

Then, of course, we mustn't ever stop having a helluva time. ;)

Cheryl P. said...

You are right about hindsight. Even looking at life in the rear view mirror is tricky. We all seem to have different versions (memories) of how events unfolded. By the time we have learned a lesson it is past the point of handling it correctly. Ahhh, the circle of life.

Bodaciousboomer said...

#9 should be tattooed on everyone's brain. Words to live by for sure.