This summer, Iona proudly participated in our third Capital Pride Festival. At the event, we asked attendees to share advice to their younger selves on colorful notecards. Answers ranged from the hilarious (“don’t get a bad tattoo – think it through!”) to the powerful (“Be brave enough to say YES!”).
Many messages spoke of courage and pride. Others encouraged their younger selves to trust themselves and come out earlier. Some had practical advice about saving money. All of them showcased the resiliency, humor, hope, and love within the lesbian, gay, bisexual, transgender, and queer (LGBTQ) community.
With nearly 365 responses, here are some of our favorite words of wisdom from Capital Pride:
What Advice Do You Have for Your Younger Self?
- Don’t be afraid to ask for help if you truly need it. Your mental health is not a burden.
- Self-care is radical.
- There is no such thing as a “right path.”
- Cut your hair. Mom won’t be that upset.
- Don’t sweat the small stuff!
- Love yourself through all your phases.
- Confidence will take you everywhere (P.S. Hats are always cool!)
- Have fun and don’t date Philip.
- Learn something new every day. Love more!
- The sky is NOT the limit. Go beyond!!
- Eat Well! Love Well! Live Well!
- Do more good more often. Do less bad less often. You know the difference.
- Focus on your art and music. It will make you happier.
- Wear your retainer.
- It’s OK to just be OK.
- Be yourself and surround yourself with good friends.
- When things look down, don’t worry. Be yourself!
- Be more confident (and throw away those cargo shorts).
- Focus on making you happy.
- Don’t be afraid to be yourself.
Do you have advice for your younger self? Let us know in the comments!