Assuming you're over 20, that is.
Over the past 18 months, and especially in the last six months, I've really made a concerted effort to take better care of myself. I lost those last few nagging pounds, I'm trying to get more sleep (terrible at this), drink more water (also terrible at this), take better care of my skin, etc.
I've definitely noticed some changes over the last few years, since turning 40 of course, and they seem to be accelerating. Basically, everything I made fun of my parents for (groaning when they get up or down from a chair, stiff knees, moving reading material forward and back in attempt to focus) is coming true.
Gah. It's gross.
With that said, while I don't want to go gently into that good night and just let my body detiorate without a fight, I also want to be somewhat graceful about the whole thing. My Grandma was a really great example of aging. Although I definitely remember her getting down on the family room floor at her house and rolling around on the floor in her nightie, doing exercises to Gloria Marshall, she always talked about how each age was something to look forward to.
She may have been lying to make me feel better. Who knows.
So I'm trying to think about my older self talking to my younger self, really at any age. What would my 40-year-old self say to my 20-year-old self? What will my 50-year-old self say?
At this point, here are the things I would advise/suggest/encourage my younger self.
-You are not fat. Your weight went up and down some, and there were some times that you were softer (like after living in Europe for the summer of '93), but fat? No.
-With that said, eat better. Avoid chemicals!
-Take care of your skin. Stay out of the sun. Tans are overrated. Moisturize. You may try to age gracefully, but age spots are a drag. So is skin cancer. Fair is just fine.
-Stop fighting your hair.
-Don't sweat the small stuff. School work will get done. Work will get done. And if it doesn't, the earth will not stop turning.
-No one is looking at how clean your house is. Instead of cleaning, go outside. Be active. On your deathbed, you will not regret that you didn't dust.
-Don't gossip. Be genuine. Smile more.
-This, too, shall pass. Whatever it is.
What would you tell your younger self?