Teen Advice: Advice to Your 15 Year Old Self

Teen Advice

If I knew then what I know now… but would I have listened?  Teen Advice is a plentiful as leaves on a tree, but here is a bit of a twist.

I asked many people this question:

If you could go back in time, what advice would you give your 15-year-old self, knowing what you know now?

I’ve been compiling and publishing what you said. It seems like a great way to herald the arrival of my newest book, Awesome Moms Communication Handbook: How To Keep Your Daughter From Slamming the Door.

Each week for 8 weeks, I will publish a blog post featuring the advice from several volunteers, each from a different decade. Here’s the twist: Their ages and their advice will be scrambled. You have to figure out who said what based on what would be typical of their age.

Return here every week to see if you got the answers correct. Sometimes you will. Sometimes you won’t. Why? Because your advice for teenagers is universal and timeless.

If you would like to offer your advice for YOUR 15-year-old self (not a current teenager), enter it here, and maybe it will be selected:

Week One: Teen Advice Answers for the Week of October 2, 2017:

Teens: 

Amanda, 17: Don’t be so defensive. Be more confident.

Twenties: Brian, 25: Be myself. I was very quiet. I limited myself by not taking opportunities because I was shy. I would tell myself to open up.

Thirties: Karen, 39: Stay focused in school because you’ll gain more knowledge and you’ll be more independent.

Fourties: Pam, 43: What am I going to tell me who knew everything? You’re going to be alright. It’s just going to take a really long time to get there.

Fifties: Laura, 57: You don’t have to change who you are to please a guy, or to fit in with those clique-y girls. Be bold enough to form your own group of friends who are more like you. Seek them out and make a group.

Sixties: Susan, 67: Don’t think that every crisis is the end of the world. This too shall pass.

Seventies: Gunilla, 77: Listen to your heart. You already have some inner hints about what really matters to you.

Eighties +: Ruth, 83: Don’t rush too fast. Just because the other kids are trying it, back away and say no because your time is coming, and you will get there soon enough.

 Week Two: Teen Advice Answers for the Week of October 9, 2017:

Teens: Lauren, 16: Follow your gut feeling instead of self-denial.

Twenties: Laurel, 21: Do things for yourself. Love yourself. Work the relationship out with yourself first.

Thirties: Andre, 32: Listen to my parents.

Fourties: Carriann, 46: You learn from your mistakes and you keep going. I wouldn’t change anything. Otherwise the kids I have now would not be who they are. Everything you go through, no matter how hard, is a learning experience.

Fifties: Tim, 50: Enjoy your 15 year old self. Don’t be in a rush.

Sixties: Theresa, 60: Study! Life is not a party. You may think it is when you are 15, but then you pay the piper later. You end up struggling. PS: You don’t know everything!

Seventies: David, 72: Keep your eyes open and your mouth shut.

Eighties +: Elvie, 81: Don’t think about your shortcomings. Think about the positive aspects about yourself.

Week Three: Teen Advice Answers for the Week of October 16, 2017:

Teens: Robin, 19: Hard times don’t last. Hard work always pays off, so keep focused.

Twenties: Madeline, 24: Just be yourself and the right people will follow. I used to worry that I didn’t have enough friends, but as I got older I realized that the right people walk into my life at the right time.

Thirties: Farborz, 39: I loved playing basketball, and I regret not continuing.

Forties: Brad, 47: Be mindful of your state of mind.

Fifties: Kenny, 58: Don’t be that guy, the one who’s the butt-hole.

Sixties: Denice, 63: Sex kills. Wait for the one you love.

Seventies: Peggy, 73: Get a good education. Develop your ability to reason. Understand the country in which you live. Know your constitution.

Eighties +: Beverly, 85: Enjoy those years. It was great for me. It was a time before great responsibility. Time goes by so fast.

Week Four: Teen Advice Answers for the Week of October 23, 2017:

Teens: Emily, 17:  Continue to work hard. Try to get good grades so you can go to college.

Twenties: Andrew, 21: When having sex, practicing safe sex is important! Get all the sleep you can before you get a real job.

Thirties: Erin (Rosen), 31: I would tell my 15 year old self to reach for your goals, not to settle for less. Even when things feel tough or impossible to keep believing in your dream. To never give up just to keep safe or fear of rejection. Stay in alignment with what feels true to you and you will live a life full of happiness.

Forties: Heidi, 41: It won’t last. He’s not worth it.

Fifties: Nikki, 54: Don’t be so concerned with what other people thing about you; particularly outer appearance. Mix comfortable shoes in with the hot shoes.

Sixties: Kathy, 60s: Don’t be so sensitive. Grow a thicker skin.

Seventies: Anitah, 70: Take sports very seriously, especially tennis.

Eighties +: Pearl, 87: I wish I hadn’t given up my first boyfriend, who I really liked, because my friend didn’t like him.

Week Five: Teen Advice Answers for the Week of October 30, 2017:

Teens: Haylee, 16: Find your worth in who you were made to be instead of in someone else’s Go

Twenties: Abigail, 23: If I could go back, I’d tell myself to not get in a serious relationship with any guy, that I was way too young to be so emotionally invested in a relationship, that I lost perspective and it quickly became unhealthy. I’d tell myself not to have exclusive romantic relationships- just stay friends, don’t tie yourself down, get to know lots of different guys so that you’ll have more of an idea of what you want in a relationship down the road. Take this time in your life to enjoy being young, and wild (in the best ways), and free.

Thirties: Andrika, 31. Love yourself first.

Forties: Christopher, 43: Buy Apple.

Fifties: Judy, 50: Accept yourself. Love yourself for who you are. Love you.

Sixties: Candy, 64: Set higher goals. Throw gender stereotypes out the window.

Seventies: Sally, 77: Go with the flow!

Week Six: Teen Advice Answers for the Week of November 6, 2017:

Teens: Dana, 15: Keep your secrets to yourself.

Twenties: Abigail, 23: If I could go back, I’d tell myself to not get in a serious relationship with any guy, that I was way too young to be so emotionally invested in a relationship, that I lost perspective and it quickly became unhealthy. I’d tell myself not to have exclusive romantic relationships- just stay friends, don’t tie yourself down, get to know lots of different guys so that you’ll have more of an idea of what you want in a relationship down the road. Take this time in your life to enjoy being young, and wild (in the best ways), and free.

Thirties: Leteashia, 31: Wait for a relationship. Wait for sex. Wait for anything. Wait. Be patient.

Forties: Don’t settle.

Fifties: Dee Sarwan, 51: Don’t get caught in the “I’m too shy trap”. Step out to receive opportunities!

Sixties: Cindy, 60: Before you get interested in boys, you need to go get an education so you can financially support yourself.

Seventies: Anitah, 70: Take sports very seriously, especially tennis.

Week Seven: Teen Advice Answers for the Week of November 13, 2017:

Teens: Leah, 18: Do all- star cheerleading, and not ski club because I ended up tearing my ACL.

Twenties: Melissa, 22: Don’t be stupid.

Thirties: Muska, 32: Your crush isn’t that cool. Focus on school!

Forties: Rocko, 48 Study-stay in school-don’t do drugs.

Fifties: Judy, 50: Accept yourself. Love yourself for who you are. Love you.

Sixties: David, 62: Be a good listener, love Christ. The hardest part of landing any job is being given the opportunity to sell yourself.

Seventies: Hannah, 73 Working on a dairy farm in Ireland.