1. Stop comparing yourself to others. Everyone has their own strengths & weaknesses. The people who you are comparing yourself to have just as many insecurities are you. You will end up embracing your flaws and loving who you turned out to be.
2. Less is more. You don’t need to layer on the foundation that’s two shades too light or dark for you. No matter what you think, you are not ugly! You will learn to use make-up to enhance your features rather than mask them. Mascara is your best friend, and this love affair will continue all of your life. You still go overboard with the bronzer sometimes though – there are some things that you will never get the hang of!
3. Kiss all the boys you please. Just don’t kiss them all in one night. Teenage boys have feelings too you know.
4. Listen to your grandfather. Don’t excuse yourself from the dinner table, or follow your little sister into the tv room when Grandad launches into another valuable lesson. Sit there patiently with an open mind and learn something new. He is the most knowledgeable and hardworking man you will ever meet. You will miss his ‘boring’ history lessons and advice more than anything when he is gone.
5. Treat others like you would like to be treated. Yes, there were times that people made your life tough, but don’t take this as license to make fun of anyone else just because they are an easy target. The more confident you become in yourself, the more embarrassed you will feel about the way you treated those who looked up to you.
6. You will grow out of the awkward teenage phase. Trust me.
7. Don’t worry that you don’t know what you want to do with your life. You will not know at 25, and probably still not know at 30. Seize all the opportunities you can, but never compromise on your happiness. You will learn that a positive attitude will open many doors, but it is experience and hard work that will get you in the room!
8. Believe in yourself. You are a very intelligent and talented young lady. Just because these talents aren’t necessarily appreciated by your peers right now, does not mean that they will not be recognised later on in life. You have dreams and goals, pursue them with passion and engage in the world all you can.
9. WEAR YOUR RETAINER. If, and when, you lose it, do not wait two years to ask the orthodontist for a new one. She won’t be angry with you – she’ll be more angry when you visit her at 22 and sees the damage that has been done to her masterpiece. Your smile is one of your best features. Don’t let the thousands of euro your parents spent on it go to waste.
10. Don’t be afraid of making mistakes. Yes, we all know you like to do things just right and some might say you are a bit of a perfectionist, but making mistakes is character building. You are not a failure. You are not the sum of your mistakes. It is not the end of the world. Pick yourself up, learn from it and move on.
11. Get off your bum and do some physical activity once and a while. You’ll regret it in 10 years if you don’t! P.S put down that third mars bar and pick up a banana!
12. Never, ever shave your eyebrows. Just don’t do it. Please.
13. You feel things deeply and think about things differently than others. People will try to belittle your beliefs, your values and your dreams, but that doesn’t mean that your feelings aren’t real. You can’t change the way other people think. You are emotional – deal with it! Continue to see the world from your perspective and don’t like negativity fog your view.
14. Share your thoughts & worries with your mum. It may not feel like it now, but she has your best interest at heart. She knows you better than anyone and really does know best. She has been, and will always be, the one and only constant in your life.
15. Embrace, don’t quench, your inner drama queen. She is a part of you, and she will eventually be given a name (Charlene meet Rosie). Talk with your hands (and your whole body!!). Don’t be afraid to laugh more than your peers. Sing. Dance. Act. Revel in the attention. Enjoy being young, carefree, dramatic and silly, because being simply dramatic and silly isn’t half as much fun.
What would you tell your 15 year old self if you had the chance?