Emily Karlsson

From Sixteen Strangers

Emily Karlsson
From Sixteen Strangers

I’ve been trying to write this post since 7 PM, and it’s nearing 10:30 now. I’ve started and deleted so many different attempts, unsure of where to go. This seemed like one of those posts where I needed to have write like I had all the answers to life, tying together different things in my life and make them connected and flow into a life lesson. But I couldn’t figure out how to make what I wanted to write about connect into one coherent post. As I got more and more frustrated, I started to text my friends, asking them what I should write about, until finally I got the idea to ask a bunch of them the same question.

I wasn’t sure what I was expecting when I texted sixteen of my friends and asked what piece of advice they’d give themselves, but I was hoping that I’d find my post in their answers somehow. The answers ranged from three word sentences to three sentence paragraphs. Because I asked sixteen different people, I got sixteen different answers that I couldn’t tie together in an overarching theme, which is a little frustrating for me, because I like things to be easy and obvious. The more that I looked at the advice, trying to string it together, the more I realized that they had all said what I’d been struggling to put together for the past three hours. So instead of trying to write about their words, I thought I would let them share a little bit of what’s been on their hearts.

A Letter of Advice From My Friends:

            Don’t underestimate yourself when taking your finals. Also, you’re going to kick ass on this eight-page paper you’re writing tomorrow. Good for you for getting done a week early. One bad day is NOT going to ruin your progress. You get right back on your feet tomorrow and go at this with all you got. Give yourself time. Take it slow. Everything bothering you is probably just you blowing things out of proportion and you should stop that. You can’t plan for the unplanable. Something going differently than planned is not necessarily a bad thing. It doesn’t have to be a good thing either; it can just be a thing. Don’t worry about the future, because everything works out in the end. Take chances, most don’t come twice. Live unapologetically as yourself, the rest will fall into place. Don’t be sad that things end. Be happy that they happened.

Be completely present and realize every moment is a gift from God. Remember to look for Him in other people. The Lord will provide everything you need and worrying won’t make any difference. Put your faith in God, He’ll lead you in the right direction. Hold tight to the love and will of God. Things are rough right now, but God is greater. His plan will bring you joy. Always put 100% of your faith into God and that plan instead of people, things, and goals. Don't settle for a heart 75% full when patience can make it overflow eventually in multiple facets of life

I wasn’t expecting any of my friends to ask me my question back. Two of them did, and I told them that I would tell myself to calm down, trust in God, and know that worrying about things that are so far away isn’t worth it. So there you go—sixteen pieces of advice from sixteen different people facing sixteen different situations. Hopefully you heard what you needed to hear somewhere in that.

It’s Friday, the end of the workweek, the second to last day of April. Take a deep breath, close your eyes, say a prayer if you’re so inclined. Take five minutes for yourself and just feel. You’ve made it this far. You’re not done with your journey yet, but as long as you keep putting one foot in front of the other, you’ll be okay. 

When I'm not taking mental notes about what to write next, you can find me on Pinterest, crafting something, or reading a book. I love dad jokes, overusing the Oxford comma and semi-colons, and understanding people. And while I'm not sure what I'm going to do in the future, I'm a firm believer in the idea that a good mug of coffee and a good friend can turn your day around. I'm also a firm believer in the idea that we have to hold onto a little bit of hope no matter what situation we're in. That, coupled with a little bit of kindness and love, can make magic.