Do you remember the 1985 Steven Spielberg movie Back to the Future? Did you root for Marty McFly as he traveled back in time to help a younger version of his father? The plot and special effects were very exciting and even groundbreaking for 1985. In fact, Back to the Future was the most successful movie of 1985 and received numerous awards as a result. Have you ever thought about revisiting your past to write a love letter to your younger self and offer encouraging words? Throughout the past five years, I’ve written a love letter to myself several times. Although it was surreal and kind of weird, it was extremely therapeutic and healing. Here are four incredible reasons why you should write an appreciation love letter to your younger self and a SPECIAL Sneak Peek of one of my personal love letters.
1). It Reveals your Growth.
Think about this; in general, we like to view visual aids to track our progress or lack thereof and compare information related to a goal. It enables us to remember where we’ve been and understand where we’re going. For example, how do you feel when you’re able to identify tasks you’ve completed when working towards a goal? When you write a love letter to your younger self you’ll feel amazing because you’ll reminisce about that time-specific period in your life, what you were going through and ways you were victorious over obstacles. You deserve to acknowledge your accomplishments and triumphs, and to do something celebratory as a result!
2). It Increases your Appreciation.
When writing your love letter, you’re forced to reflect on many of your previous achievements and how awesome you are. For example, while reflecting on what I wanted to say to my 12-year old self I was bombarded with negative and positive thoughts and experiences. I intentionally chose to focus on the positive aspects, in order to encourage and enlighten ‘my younger self’. I thought about fun times like spending the school breaks with my cousins, having dance contests and fighting over chores with my siblings. I also focused on my appealing qualities, quirks I love about me and achievements I’m proud of. In other words, I reflected on my achievements, which heightened my sense of appreciation for me. It’s a fantastic feeling to be proud of yourself despite past disappointments, make-believe inadequacies, and minute failures.
3). It Gently Nudges your Memory.
Sometimes in life, we inadvertently forget the pleasant memories of those who have knowingly and unknowingly helped us on our journey. It’s so easy to get caught up in living a busy life that we often forget to take five or ten minutes to say thank you or send a thank you message to someone who encouraged or inspired us. Now I’m not one to point fingers too often, but I’ve been guilty of this. How awesome is it to get an email, text message, phone call or greeting card from someone explaining how we’ve helped them in some way? When you write a thank you note or love letter to yourself, you’ll no doubt think of those who have been monumental in your journey. Why not take a minute to reach out to them to say thank you? Sometimes I smile and chuckle to myself when I think of those monumental people in my life, but I want to make them aware of how much I appreciate them.
4). It’s Fun.
Did I tell you how much fun it is to write a love letter to your younger self? It’s super fun because you can make the letter any length you want, mail or email it to yourself and have a love letter party with your friends to share letters. The possibilities are endless! If you’re not feeling the whole ‘share’ my personal love letter idea it’s perfectly fine. It’s also okay if this experience is a bit emotional depending upon the things stated in your letter. I’ve completed this self-love exercise several times and my love letters range from 2-pages to 6-pages in length. There isn’t a right or wrong way to do it. The important thing is to enjoy the experience and to finish your letter feeling more inspired than when you began.
Have you ever written a love letter to yourself? If so, how did it go? Share your thoughts in the comments section below.