1. Not everyone is going to like you and it’s fine. Be kind. Be fun. Be yourself. Give them your very best self and then move along if you need to. There’s a whole world of people out there, and some of them just weren’t made for you, and you weren’t made for them. Trust me, it’s fine.
2. Nobody cares that much about the way you look. Don’t decline an invitation because you have a giant zit on your forehead. Don’t have a bad attitude because your hair is being frizzy and doing that weird loopy thing. Don’t take two hours to put on five layers of foundation. Your looks will never be the most important part about you.
3. You have a purpose NOW. Yes, you’re working really hard to build a future, and that’s great. But your life matters now. You have work to do right where you are standing. There are people who need what you have right in front of your face. Don’t wait for tomorrow to become somebody who matters, become it now.
4. Your heart is gonna break. More than once. You’re gonna fall face-first on the hardwood floor and you are going to think you’ll never ever stand again. But you will. And when you rise up, you will be more resilient. You will be wiser. You will be stronger.
5. Make girlfriends before boyfriends. You’re gonna meet the right guy. God’s got one for you. But in the meantime – CHILL OUT A HOT MINUTE. Make some good, solid friendships. Focus on building a relationship with the girls you are laughing with and learning with. 9 out of 10 of those boys won’t matter in the very near future (and maybe none of them will), but if you play your cards right, those friendships will last a lifetime. They’ll be the ones standing beside you when you do finally meet the right guy.
6. You don’t need to impress anyone. Stop living life like it’s an interview and you’re on the defense.
7. Know your worth. Don’t let the world around you shake the platform of self-confidence you’ve been building. Your value doesn’t change based on whether other people see it or not. Your value doesn’t change based on whether you get passed over, or looked over, or picked over.
9. Popularity isn’t what it seems. It’s better to have a couple of true friends than a whole slew of people who would trade you in at the drop of a hat. Choose people who choose you.
10. Don’t live by other people’s compliments. Don’t die by other people’s criticisms. Take it all with a grain of salt.
11. You’re never going to catch that perfection you’ve been chasing. You may fail a test. You may bomb an interview. You may gain 10 lbs during Christmas break. You may disappoint someone you love. You may not be class president. You’re never going to be perfect, just be the best you can.
12. Wear sunscreen. That tan looks good now. Those wrinkles will haunt you later.
13. Comparison is the thief of joy. Stay in your lane. Looking around is going to slow you down. Looking around is going to stall your speed. Looking around is going to stop you right in your tracks. Be happy for the girl whose grass is green, but meanwhile, you just keep watering your own lawn.
14. Insecurity is the thief of pretty much everything. Be firm in who you are. Be sure in what you’re doing. Be secure in the direction you are headed.
15. Your words are important. Don’t throw stones, use them to build a bridge between you and other people. Think first. Speak second.
16. It doesn’t really matter if the world accepts you. It doesn’t really matter if the world rejects you. What matters are the things you give to the world to make it a better place.
17. Stop trying to fight your weirdness. Stop trying to fight your awkwardness. Stop trying to fight your inability to totally conform. Being a difference-maker, means you’re going to think, going to be a little different. It’s fine. Actually, it’s more than fine. It’s the best part about you.