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This is the time to do the things you want to do. This is the time to continue to do the things you know you are good at, even though they have been hard lately. This is the time, and there is no other time than now. Do these things now, and continue doing them, or you will be filled with regret. When it get difficult is when you have to keep going.

You fell in a river today when attempting to jump it. Jump a new one tomorrow.

You haven’t been writing enough lately. You haven’t been singing enough lately. You haven’t been learning languages and dancing and cooking enough lately. Now is the time to do the things you want to do, and to push through the feelings of not being good enough at them. Lots of people suck at dancing, but have fun doing it anyway. You (probably) suck less at writing than many people. So do some of it. Quit neglecting these things.

You finished a damn sweater this week, made with your own hands! Stop thinking that you are bad at everything. It looks professional. It’s the first garment you’ve made in a long time. It’s warm. You finished it.

Stop thinking that you aren’t doing enough. Just this summer you’ve learned to tie ropes for abseiling, driven rescue boats (coaxing the outboard motor to life for one of them), been called ‘The FireMaster,’ made empanadas, cleaned 400+ toilets, instructed archery,  swam in the Greenland Sea, and driven about 3000km in Iceland. Including the Highlands! Who does that? You do, explorer!

It’s all too easy to fall into that negative self-talk. You heard the patterns forming, clouds that seem innocuous enough now, in the talk of the eleven year old girls from your ‘home’ country. They said all the things you think about yourself, didn’t they? They built the fastest, hottest, and most efficient fire you’d seen children build unassisted all summer. But they couldn’t see how good it was.

“Just put it out! It’s terrible. It’s not a very good fire,” she said, while the flames reached nearly above her head, seated on the beach. Weren’t you confused? She couldn’t seem to see how good the fire was.

Isn’t it possible that you aren’t seeing your own fire? You don’t want to be this way. The best news is that you don’t have to be. You are changing it, right now. Once you’ve gotten a little more sleep, you’ll feel better.

Now is the time. Listen to your better self here, take a little rest, and let’s get going.

Time to go exploring once again.

4 comments on “This is the Time – A letter to myself at 28

  1. thisisyouth says:

    Inspiring! But looks cold in the photo.

    1. Coleen says:

      This was on the Greenland Sea, in Iceland.

  2. mmonroe841 says:

    This is a very courageous post. I’m in awe of your ability to write, to share your emotions, and to live out your dreams.

    1. mmonroe841 says:

      Oh, and love the poster girl photo! 🙂

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