21DJC Day 4 – If You Are To Travel Back in Time to 3 Years Ago, What Advice Would You Give Yourself?

This is Day 4 of the 21-Day Journaling Challenge (21DJC) for Nov 2011. View list of tasks: 21DJC Overview.

Hi everyone – Welcome to Day 4 of 21DJC! :)

Yesterday’s question was: “What is your ideal diet like?“. It was interesting reading your responses. Many of you seem to be in tune with what’s best for your body, which is great! Many of you stressed on a diet that’s filled in nutrition and void of empty calories, since the latter does not benefit our body. Many of you are committed to removing unhealthy, junk food from your diet; At the same a diet with high fruits and vegetables is a common vision across the board.

Me, my ideal diet is the raw vegan diet. One that’s high in fresh fruits, vegetables, and raw nuts. I came to this conclusion a couple of years ago, though it was only made conscious during my 21-day fast in Feb this year.

At the moment I’m on a veg*n diet, because I’m still working on integrating the raw vegan diet into my lifestyle, since the society doesn’t exactly accommodate for such a lifestyle. But in time to come, I imagine I’d be on a high raw diet, before eventually transiting to a full raw diet at some point.

Ultimately all of us are different and have different needs, so go for the diet that you feel best about. There’s no need to feel compelled on a certain diet just because of what your parents, society, health magazines, or TV say. Go on a vegetarian diet if it’s in line with your beliefs in life. Go for a vegan diet if that’s what you feel is highest for your being. Go for a pescetarian lifestyle if that’s what you feel best about. Eat a meat-based diet if that’s what’s in line with your personal values and beliefs.

If you eat something only to feel bad about it afterwards, whether physically, mentally, emotionally or spiritually, then it’s a cue that it’s probably not the ideal for you. This includes eating junk food on the spur of the moment, then beating yourself up over it or feeling “guilty” about it after that.

While you can argue that it’s a “treat” and you “deserve” it, the point is you yourself already acknowledge the food is bad and feel bad about eating it afterwards. This in itself suggests a misalignment in your wants/needs that needs to be worked through, vs. allowing the conflicting behavior to perpetuate.

Either you have a candy bar because you *truly* feel it’s the best thing for your body, or you don’t have that. You can’t be thinking “this candy bar isn’t good” and still have that in your ideal diet. That doesn’t make any sense at all; it’s a contradiction in itself. Ideal means something that’s the highest of it all; something you acknowledge to be the best of the best for yourself.

In the end, your ideal diet should be one which you feel 110% emotionally, physically, mentally and spiritually both in the short-run and in the long-run - nothing less than that. By having a clear idea of what your ideal diet is, it brings awareness to what you want to feed your body with. This makes it easier for you to achieve this goal in the long run.

While I have a vision of what my ideal diet is, I’m far from it at the moment – there are times when I go off track with my diet due to emotional eating, lack of my desired food, or circumstances. But the important thing is I always work on getting back on track. Being on your ideal diet may not happen overnight, but the important thing is you move closer toward it, and work on integrating it into your lifestyle, day by day. In time, you realize you are exactly where you want to be.

With that said, let’s now move to today’s question! ;)

21DJC Day 4

Today’s question is a fun one – one which involves some imagination and thinking outside of our current framework of time:

If You Are To Travel Back in Time to 3 Years Ago, What Advice Would You Give Yourself?

Time Travel

How old would you be 3 years ago? What was happening at that time? What would you say to yourself? And why?

(Today’s question can be found in #21 of 101 Important Questions To Ask Yourself In Life.)

Put on your reflection cap and let your thoughts flow. Below is an empty form which you can use to write your answers to the question. Treat it as your private 21DJC journaling “room”, if you will. You will be seeing this form every day, for the 21 days of the challenge. There’s a button for you to keep track of your word count too, if you’re interested.

(Note you will not see the form below if you’re viewing this in your email client. Visit the actual post online to see the form.)

If You Are To Travel Back in Time to 3 Years Ago, What Advice Would You Give Yourself?

Your Task Today:

  1. Reflect and answer today’s question. There’s no word limit – whether minimum or maximum. Write as few or as many words as you want. It’s all up to what you want to express!
  2. Share your answer. After you are done writing, copy and paste your answer in the comments area and post it there.
  3. Check out other participants’ answers. Other participants will be sharing their answers too, so feel free to read and reply to their answers. This is a group course, so let’s support each other in these 21 days.
Look forward to reading your answers! :D

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« 21DJC Day 3 – What is Your Ideal Diet Like?

21DJC Day 5 – Who Is the Most Important Person to You in the World? »

258 Responses | Share Your Results!

  1. Kamal says:

    I would be 36 years old 3 years ago. A lot of changes would be taking effect in my life at that time. I would like to say to myself that whatever I plan for my future, I should stick to it and do not waste a single moment of my life doing work which is least important. I would tell myself to give priority to most important things first. I would tell myself to be more practical in life and do not get emotionally involved with everyone / everything. Would like to live my own life instead of handing over the remote control of my life to someone else.

    Because, what I planned 3 years ago didn’t gone as per the planning……I wasted a lot of my time doing unnecessary or less important work which I do not want to repeat now……3 years ago I get emotionally attached to everything / everyone, due to which I was unable to take practical decisions…..this is what I do not want to repeat in my future……3 years ago, I always compromised my lifestyle, I spent my life to always make others happy by fulfilling their unending demands…..due to which I forgot to live my own life as I wanted to.

    In all, I wasted a lot of precious time and learned a lesson from it. Now I’m much more practical then ever and do my work as planned and trying to live the life which I always wanted to. :)

    Like: Thumb up +4

    • Ish says:

      Hi Kamal, I had a similar thought about having wasted precious time, then I thought of a quote I read somewhere. I can’t remember the exact words – but basically saying that the journey is as important as the destination.

      So maybe I’ve wasted some time, and delayed in learning some lessons. I have not yet reached the destination, but the journey has been also been enriching and helpful in making me what I am today.

      Hope you achieve your goals and live the life you want!

      Like: Thumb up +3

  2. MrsSilver says:

    Three years ago I was very depressed and unhappy. I “made” myself go to school in a foreign country even though I didn’t really want to, I didn’t feel inspired and I wasn’t able to take in or appreciate what was taught there. I paid a high tuition (student loan) and I managed to almost get all A’s (I got a couple of B’s only because I was absent from class, the reason why is I would get panic attacks and I just couldn’t make myself go there, it caused me too much anxiety). I did have a fairly good time with both my siblings that were also studying abroad at the same school as me and we shared an apartment together. However, my ex-husband also lived with us pretty much that whole period (that’s also when we decided to get married) and it wasn’t until a year and a half later that I realized the two of us shouldn’t be together. I had some major self confidence issues three years ago, but mainly I just wasn’t happy at all in that relationship. In the end, I wouldn’t change anything, because based on every decision and every step I’d taken earlier in my life, I met the special someone who I actually belong with. I couldn’t have a better relationship than the one I’m in today – and it just keeps getting better too!

    Looking back, I would tell myself these three things;
    1) Don’t worry so much about everything
    2) It will all work out in the end
    3) You really are very talented and beautiful inside and out

    Like: Thumb up +8

    • Kamal says:

      Well said Mrs. Silver….

      Everything would work out in the end if we stay positive and happy inside. :)

      Like: Thumb up +4

  3. cloudio says:

    I am so perfectionist, if I can travel back to this morning I would change at least 100 things.
    That’s why if I can travel back to 3 years ago, I probably wouldn’t change a bit.
    Everything happened to me, it was for a reason: give me opportunity to grow.
    Think about the movie “sliding doors” or the zen story “maybe”.
    Errare humanum est, perseverare autem diabolicum: you make mistakes so you can learn from them. Just avoid repeat the same twice.

    Still I would like to think less about the past or the future, and just live more intensely the present moment.

    Like: Thumb up +10

    • Kamal says:

      Very correct dear Cloudio….

      Everyone makes mistakes in his / her life….the best thing would be that we should learn from our mistakes and should not repeat the same again. :)

      Like: Thumb up +2

      • cloudio says:

        which unfortunately it is not so easy, since we keep repeating over and over the same mistakes

        Like: Thumb up +2

        • Celes says:

          Hey guys! The question has nothing to do with whether you regret the past 3 years of your life or not – it also has nothing to do with whether you want to change what happened in the past 3 years. It’s about identifying the key lessons we’ve learned in those 3 years – so we can apply them onward to the future. If I were to reiterate the question, “What advice would you give to yourself 3 years ago?”. Even if you are to say to your younger self: “Continue whatever you are doing now”, that’s also a piece of advice.

          But I believe all of us have probably distilled more lessons in the past 3 years than to just tell our younger self “Do whatever you’re doing now”, aye? Just food for thought.

          Hope that helps!

          Like: Thumb up +4

    • cloudio says:

      Ok I’ll rewrite after Celes clarification.

      I would tell to my 3 years younger me not to obsess in finding a place where to settle down, because my intimate nature is nomadic, and while you get tired of traveling after years, there is no place on Earth I will not get uncomfortable after a while.
      Ditto for the search of a twin soul: there are times where you need more the help of a person, who can stay on your side and understand you, but even if you think you have found her, she may be not ready or willing to stay with you. Go over!

      Like: Thumb up +3

  4. Kamal says:

    Very correct dear Cloudio….

    Everyone makes mistakes in his / her life….the best thing would be that we should learn from our mistakes and should not repeat the same again. :)

    Like: Thumb up +2

  5. Glenn says:

    The advice I would give myself if I were to travel back in time 3 years.

    Firstly I just had to check what I was doing three years ago. So I checked on my Vimeo page to see what videos I’d made around that time. Ahh yes, and now I see.

    Three years ago was 2008. I had made some nice videos that year. Around that time I was about to shoot a short film for a guy who’d contacted me from Brisbane. It was for a film festival called Tropfest and the movie made it into the finals. So I wouldn’t change anything about that, although I would assure myself that I had nothing to worry about when shooting it. Maybe I would tell myself to avoid the one the guy made the following year, which didn’t do so well.

    I would also let myself know about all the essential video techniques I’ve only learnt about during the past 3 years. In order to avoid technical problems that made some of the work I do quite difficult throughout those 3 years until I discovered those solutions.

    In fact, one I thing I would tell myself is not to focus too much on making an income from making music videos. Instead focus on ways of earning a passive income. One way may have been to focus on my sound design business. Or to begin concentrating on recording my own music again, to focus on just using one software package to record the music and how to go about it. Techniques I’ve I’ve been refining over the past few years. If I was to continue shooting videos for people, that I should just stick to the cinematography side of things.

    Simplifying my life, that’s another important recommendation. Start early removing all the junk I no longer need. To sell everything on eBay asap, which is something I’m only just about to begin doing now. That way I could already begin clearing out the back shed freeing up more space to use it as a greenscreen room I could use to shoot videos which would be permanently set up ready to go. I’d tell myself not to be afraid to sell my Star Wars collection, my record collection, some of my parents belongings and other sentimental items, as these are things I don’t need that are just wasting space.

    If we didn’t already have tiles on the floor back then, I’d make sure to tell myself to get the studio tiled as well, just to save having to get it done again later. There are also a lot of other similar and minor trivial things I would recommend doing. Which include other home improvement tips that my wife and I would benefit from.

    Something else I’d make clear would be the people I should be following. Which friends to connect with and those I should look to for inspiration. To make sure I let myself know about websites such as celestinechua.com I wasn’t familiar with back then. And also alert myself to the people I would be best avoiding at all costs. Along with certain websites and blogs I shouldn’t waste my time visiting. I would even encourage myself to set up a decent blog I can use to teach people something, and to post to it on a regular basis.

    As far as food goes, I would certainly get the message across to quit wheat gluten and chocolate and caffeine, along with a few of the other points I raised in my ideal diet journal entry from yesterday. All quite important. I would even recommend a long fast like the 24 day fast I did, but maybe only for two weeks. To also let myself know about any recipes I’ve only discovered in the past year or two that I enjoy a lot, but are still healthy.

    And I think that just about covers everything. The main thing though would just be to inspire myself to be the better person I need to be. To take action and make the effort to do what needs to be done. To be better than the person I am today even. To avoid any short cuts that may appear along the way, as they never work out. And not to try doing too much at once, but to focus on the task at hand, complete it and then move onto the next.

    Like: Thumb up +4

  6. Amanda says:

    3 years ago. I was 28 years old. I was still of the mindset that we might have more children and spent many hours obsessing about it. My husband and I had just passer our 1 year anniversary of buying our house. If I could go back in time, I would tell myself that children were not an option for us. That we while that dream would not come true, there are other dreams that can be realized. I would tell myself it was ok to cry over the loss of this dream, but to not dwell on it for too long.

    I would also tell myself that good friends will come and go but great friends will always be there for you. I would tell myself it is ok to say no sometimes and that if someone gets mad at you for it, they shouldn’t be in your life.

    Like: Thumb up +4

  7. Ida says:

    3 years back, I was just an eighteen year old girl stepping out from home into a foreign country, a foreign world – beginning my undergraduate studies on my own, more 30 000miles away.

    ‘Don’t be afraid. Don’t worry too much. Don’t cry, there is still tomorrow,’ This is what I will say to myself. I have no regrets for what I’ve done, been through and experienced but more courage won’t hurt. :)

    Like: Thumb up +3

  8. Mary Jane Hoover says:

    Three years ago I would tell my self:

    Advocate for your health, doctors do miss things and my doctor’s nurse practitioner found need to send me for extra tests three years later (4 months ago) I have had surgery for the same thing twice in the past 45 days. and am facing other health concerns that just showed up in the tests they recently did. Listen to your body and know that it tells you when you are ill, some doctors will tell you its all in your mind, or its due to this other condition.

    Then I would stop smoking, exercise and eat healthier. What I am doing now.

    I would tell myself:


    And I would take risks, not to end my life, but to not have regrets because I spent my life dying instead of living.

    Oh the wisdom of even three years!

    Like: Thumb up +7

  9. This is rather a simple question, there is nothing that i would regret and the pass is a library of my personal moments.

    1) Complete my study
    2) Take action on yearly personal improvement plan
    3) Start my online business/blogging

    Like: Thumb up +2

  10. lotusbleu says:

    Read (more books). Run (more km). Relax (more often).

    Like: Thumb up +5

  11. Peggy says:

    Don’t gain the weight back.

    Stop buying expensive wine and spending money. Save for a rainy day. (It sure is raining now)

    Like: Thumb up +4

  12. Lorraine Simmons says:

    Three years ago I was 35 and running around spending money on shoes and handbags and other frivolous things. I had no idea that my life would change dramatically in those 3 years, starting with the passing of my grandfather, and my mother almost dying. The lessons I learned were invaluable. So I would tell myself:
    1. No matter what, don’t lose your faith, God always comes through.
    2. Finish your degree, you will need it very soon for your dream job.
    3. Take care of your health. High blood pressure at 38 is not good!

    Like: Thumb up +5

  13. Margaret says:

    Margaret, everything ALWAYS works out for you……Never worry, never fear, never look back—you always got what you asked for, and you always will….Watch your thoughts, they create your world…..You are loved and watched over, always…..

    Like: Thumb up +5

  14. Nancy says:

    This is another easy one for me – 3 years ago I was about 15 pounds thinner so I’d advise myself not to slack off the points counting because one slack leads to another, which leads to another and before you know it, you’ve fallen off the wagon completely and on your way to fat town!! I had made a promise to myself 5 years ago to lose 50 pounds by the time I was 50 and I did it!! But it only took me a year and I maintained for about another year before the slacking began… so now I’m back on track, but I turned 50 without being at my goal weight and it makes me sad. I try not to beat myself up too much about it, but i hated having to size up this fall… hopefully all my new, bigger clothes will be too big soon!!!

    Like: Thumb up +2

  15. Emma says:

    if i can travel back to 3 years ago, i would told myself to make good use of the time and be more concentrated.

    Time management and concentration is what I lack.

    I can grab and learn more things if i am not very easily get distracted.

    I would gain more experience and achieve all my goals if I make use of my 24 hours a day.

    Like: Thumb up +2


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