Dear Younger Me,

Good news is you’re still going to be alive and well at 47, which should come as a definite surprise considering you think people my age fall into the old category. You are clueless and naïve about the aging process, despite your beautiful innocence.

In a couple decades your understanding of middle age will enlighten and humble your firm edge lines. Not to mention drain your wallet when you realize how many panty liners and expensive pee proof undies you will have to buy to ward off your leakage issue.

Listen, mini me, I can still move, shake, grind, and toss one back with the best of them – even in my limited capacity. Never mind I how I may feel the day after pretending I’m half my age. Pain, discomfort, and hangovers are relative. Not to mention, badges of aging honor.

I’m here to share with you ten important things I’d like your twenty something self to know, which is a mere microcosm of wisdom you need to absorb. Consider these tips the most important, and build off each one to further your journey into the real world.

1. Die to self This can’t happen soon enough. Although it may come as a surprise, you aren’t the center of your own universe. Life is about relationships and the faster you learn who you are as a part of someone else, the sooner your selfish ways will fade. We are on this planet to serve, not to be served. Crazy, I know.

2. Join SPA (Smart Phone Anonymous) Instant access to everything across the globe at the touch of a finger is overrated, so you should get help for your addiction sooner than later. Lasting wonder exists all around you in real time: live human beings, beautiful nature, sporting events you pay gobs of money to watch; to name a few. Plus walking with your head down is hazardous for you and others. Slow down. Savor the moments. Rely on your own brain instead of the google noodle.

3. Laugh often. Smile every day. Cry whenever you feel like it. Each one empties the soul, allowing more life energy to flow back in.

4. Spend time with the elderly Senior citizens are walking TED talks. Pay attention and learn from their triumphs and failures. They know what’s important in life by now. Chances are you don’t.

5. Learn to love yourself and the unique blessing God created you to be You have value, worth, and purpose no matter what anyone tells you otherwise. Learn to cherish the person in the mirror.

6. Ask yourself if __________ will matter 10 minutes, one hour, 3 days, 2 weeks from now. If the answer is no, let it go

7. Be a good listener, not just a hearer Communication is paramount to success. Listen first. Don’t interrupt. Repeat back what you’ve heard to clarify. Listen some more. Speak last.

8. Pursue your dreams and listen to your heart Trust yourself and rely on your inner compass. You get one shot at life and greatness awaits those who keep striving.

9. Be real. Own your authentic self. Don’t waste your time pretending. Be you. Be bold. Be brave.

10. Be LOVE Love is the Nike swish meaning of life. Just do it.

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