This is PART 2 of what 12 talented artists would tell their younger selves. Read here if you haven’t. Otherwise, scroll down for your dose of motivation!
#7: If you fall, there’s only one way to go which is up – @artbyratna
Nearly 5 decades ago, I was born as the youngest of 10 siblings and to a young mother who had to fend & feed her 7 school-going children when her husband died suddenly, leaving almost nothing for his family to move on but clothes on their backs. Growing up, I saw her struggles and pain but never once did she complained about how difficult it was to put the next meal on the table for her children. I sold nasi lemak in my school and the vice principal who knew of my plight, would always buy a few packets from me to ensure that I go home lighter with an empty basket.
At first, I was rather embarrassed about carrying a basket to school and peddling my nasi lemak to friends and teachers. But my mother said “Never be embarrassed about earning a living, better than stealing or cheating people”. Of course, it was hard for an 11 year old to fathom and understand that but here’s what I wish to say to my younger self.
To my younger self —be honest all the time, to yourself, to what you may be doing and to others. Be proud of your hard work and give your level best and a bit more as people will appreciate it even if they may not show it. The love and passion that you pour into your work will definitely show in your work itself.
Be bold and take risks, even the ones that may seem unrealistic because you’ll never know where you’ll end up if you don’t try. If you fall, there’s only one way to go which is up. Life is full of curveballs, no one has it easy but you have one life to live, so make it a happy one by seeing the brighter side of picture all the time.
#8: Make gratefulness part of your everyday vocabulary – @hsulynn
“GRATEFULNESS. It’s more than just saying grace for the food at the dinner table. One of the biggest lessons I’ve been trying to teach myself everyday is learning to see the good in everything, even when things look like they’re going horribly wrong. If I could go back in time to give my younger self a piece of advice, this would be it. To make gratefulness part of my everyday vocabulary so there’s no room for thoughts that hold me back from seeing all the good in my life.
But because I can’t actually turn back time to the 90s, I can instill this habit into my daughter and we’re doing that today by being grateful for these yummy falafels that were handmade by women who’ve been through harder times than any of us could know.
#9: Appreciate the process and the little things – @drawpletmy
Helllooo Younger Len,
Don’t worry about the future. What you’re doing now is all part of a bigger picture to shape and build you into the person you’re supposed to be. You will eventually pursue something that you’ve always liked! YES, you finally did it, art! And you’ll also be blessed with a bunch of great, true friends.
Life wouldn’t be as smooth or easy, but learn to appreciate the process and the little things in life, and you’ll be happier. Trust God and you’ll be on the right track! Cheers!
#10: Do things that you love and it will lead you to greater things – @ronnycakes
You are stronger than you think, even if you don’t feel like you are. Your strength will show when you need it; and know that you can get through anything. Don’t worry about what people are saying, or what they are doing – everything at your own time. It’s okay if you aren’t sure where your life is heading yet, live in the moment and be thankful for the people around you who love you at your best and at your worst.
Be kinder to yourself and be comfortable being in your own company. Do things that you love and it will lead you to greater things. Also, don’t think twice about that slice of cake because when you hit 30 you’ll have to start counting calories!
#11: – Be YOU. Be who you are and want to be. Don’t be who others want you to be. – @sharlenewangxart
No one will ever know or understand the amount of work, blood, sweat, tears you put into building what you gain ownership of today. But it doesn’t matter. You know. You know the amount of work & heart you put in behind closed doors. You know the endless hours, anxiety, loneliness. Forever striving for even more. You just keep pressing on, keep dreaming & fight !
The journey through pursuing your dreams in reality will be nothing like of those you watch in the movies-not even close to being a fairytale. People will belittle your work, laugh, judge, call you crazy…it will hurt. But I’m telling you to just do YOU! Because you’re the one who has to live with the consequences of your decisions. Not them. YOU. So be brave and be yourself. Choose being you over what everybody else wants you to be. Your Happy is defined by YOU.
#12: Treasure your family – @maddietsl
Reading Dalia’s story made me reminisce over the past. We used to disregard family reunions, putting friends over family. But as I grew older, watching people I love start wrinkling, moving away or passed on has made me realise how much each day should be cherished. When my grandma passed, it’s like a void opened and there’s nothing I could do to close it.
My teenage angst looks so small compared to Dalia’s story of struggle and sacrifice, but I’m really glad this phase has passed. Now, we just need to continue celebrating every reunion and I hope Dalia too will get to her chance to start over with her family with their new life.
And there you go! 12 pieces of motivational & encouraging advices to our younger selves. Now, take 5 mins off today to think about what would you say to your younger self — you may just be surprised at how much you’ve grown! Share your story with us with the hashtag #ToMyYoungerSelf & #thepichaproject on Instagram, and we might just feature you in our next blog post.
p/s – There are more pretty food artworks from these artists that have yet to be uploaded, so follow us on Instagram to keep updated!