Overheard in the office this week.. “But if I could turn back time, I’d have so much to tell my younger self!”

On Tuesday morning, my colleagues were grouped in the pantry chatting away over breakfast.

The topic of conversation?  What would they want to tell their younger selves, with their experiences of today.

Very apt—with Youth Day just around the corner (5 days away!) 

Sitting down to join them for breakfast, I listened to them swap life advice, reminisce about their childhoods, and bemoan “Well, in hindsight….” 

Surveying my colleagues for their advice, (so I could also possibly save Future Me some trouble) I asked them what they would want to tell a younger self.  

 Here are their words: 

Image Source: Xinyi

Live in the moment. You’ll regret the chances you didn’t take and the doors you closed. — Xinyi, 29


Image Source: Farah

Dear Younger Farah, 

It’s okay to feel scared. I know how much your family means to you, and they love you deeply too. You’ve done a wonderful job protecting them and being there for them. You’ve always strived to be the best version of yourself, constantly growing to become a better daughter, sister, wife, and mother. 

Take a moment to pat yourself on the back and acknowledge the great job you’ve done. Continue to do good and spread kindness. 

With love and pride, 

— Farah, 39 


Stay true to yourself, trust your intuition and follow your heart. We only have one shot at life so enjoy the ride and find meaning in the mundane. — Fai, 33


Image Source: Nava

I wish for you to be less opinionated and try to see life in a more holistic manner. To move out of comfort zones and to be more open to challenges, and change. — Nava, 62 


Just keep dancing like you’re.. 22! — Michelle Tay, 22 


Image Source: Stacey

Live life with no regrets. I don’t regret any of the choices I’ve made: everything has led me to this moment and to who I am today. I wouldn’t do anything differently because this life, which I love, would be different. — Stacey, 42 


Image Source: Fai

1) Always apply sunscreen when exposed to the sun.
2) Limit your sugar intake.
3) Invest in a good hair care routine to minimise hair loss.  

— Fai, 36


Image Source: Katelin

DON’T wear high heels. Your back and knees will thank you. (Ouch!)— Katelin, 40’s 


To my younger self, I wish you turn out happier than I have ever been. Never be afraid, stand up for yourself. It’s you against the world. — Syawa, 22 


Image Source: Kaylie

Travel and try things you’ve never done before! There’s so much to life than sitting behind closed doors, and going online until 3am. — Kaylie, 26 


Image Source: Z

Hello Younger Me,  

Just want to let you know—things will always pan out one way or another!
I hope you remember to take good care of yourself, because you tend to take on too much, beyond your bandwidth, especially when helping your loved ones. 

It’s okay to prioritise yourself at times to prevent burnout, cause you gotta be helping others willingly not begrudgingly! Hang in there!” — Z, 24 


Image Source: Little Miss R

Dear Younger Me, 

Don’t worry about growing up. Chase your dreams with courage and passion because your loved ones will always be there for you, supporting you every step of the way. Remember, it’s okay to stay young at heart. Cherish the child within as you grow. 

— Little Miss R, 34 


Their messages ranged from the practical “in-hindsight I should haves” hoping for the opportunity to make up for the small regrets, but also heartfelt words of encouragement and reassurance they wished they would have heard growing up. 

Reading the messages felt a lot like chatting with an older sibling—wise and much more worldly, dispensing care, encouragement and also really useful advice. It showed me that when we look back, there will be regrets and missed opportunities, and these we cannot change.  

To our readers, 
Wishing you a Happy Youth Day!

Whether young or young at heart, even if you can’t change the past, you are the future. Although my colleagues were sharing messages for their younger selves, at they same time, they were also messages for their future selves—opportunities to grow and to learn from.  

So as we celebrate Youth Day, take a moment to reflect on life so far. What did you feel reading these messages? Are you happy with how life is now or would you want to make different decisions moving forward?

Again, even if you can’t change the past, you are the future.

P.S A big thank you to my colleagues, who set aside time to write their messages down and share their pictures!