At some point in therapy I will typically ask my clients to write a letter to their 16 year old selves. At 16 we feel like we know everything and it is the time we will probably take some of our biggest risks, but along the way we end up loosing ourselves and become lost in our fears. The point of the exercise is to remind you of what is important and why you are important. Everybody was born for a reason!
Below is a letter from a client who did this exercise and graciously agreed to publish on this website.
A letter to my 16 year old self!
I just want you to know you have the world at your feet.
You have so many great qualities to share, don’t cut yourself short or think you that you don’t deserve to true friends or know what true love feels like. You have so much to offer, don’t be afraid to put yourself out there to meet new people an do different things. Your life will be what you make it, enjoy every moment for what it is.
Please learn to trust yourself, listen to what your and your gut tell you. You will have so many great successes and failures in life, whether it be school, career, friends, relationships, learn from both!! They will make you a better person. Take away from success and failure what you can, chart your own path, don’t let others do it for you. You will meet many people along your journey, some well intentioned and true, some you need to let go of. Don’t be scared to let the bad ones go, you will be a stronger person and better person. Be strong and independent, face adversity head on even though you may be unsure or scared. Let yourself be vulnerable and let your friends see the true YOU!!! They will love you for who you are and will be there no matter what because they love you.
Your life is going to be an amazing journey with some bumps along the way. You will fall down, and sometimes be pushed down. But get up!! Brush yourself off and keep going because those things will not define your life, they will give it character and color. Nothing can break your spirit. You are a survivor and a fighter. Don’t let anyone take that away!
Please don’t give up on yourself, you can make your life everything you want it to be.