Letter To Your Younger Self

Ruth Harris

Ruth Harris - Journalism and Liberal Arts Student

I’m a University student going into my third year and I’m studying Journalism and Liberal Arts

Dear younger Ruth,

Where to begin…

I am writing to you from my flat in London, going into third year of university and currently living through a global pandemic, yes, a global pandemic in the 21st century, who’d have thought it?! I want to start this letter by thanking you, my younger self, for pushing me to get to where I am today.

That break-up that your going through, that argument that you’re having with a friend, or the anxiety you’re feeling about starting something new is all part of the process. You will get through the heartache and the tears. Don’t hold them back, have a cry, get some Ben and Jerries and binge watch a good tv show. Then, when you’re ready, get up, brush it off and be your best self.

I know you might wake up some days and struggle to get out of bed, or struggle to see the positive in things but trust me, everything will be okay, and it is normal to have bad days. Don’t beat yourself up about it. Sometimes you have to take days for yourself and that’s fine, more than fine. Just don’t forget to always push yourself and believe that you can do it.

“If there is one bit of advice I could give you, that I wish I had been given when I was growing up, is to not let social media, peer pressure or society influence you to be a certain way.”

Everyone is different. No two people are the same and that is the beauty of life, you can be exactly who you want to be.

Make sure you make the most of GCSE’s and A Levels, I should have made so much more effort and not let my self confidence or negative thoughts get in the way of my success. Being at university is where I finally found my true self, it comes with time. Friends come and go, so don’t be sad if you fade away from some people, things always happen for a reason, just remember that. It is true what they say about the friendships you make at university, you definitely have friends for life, the milestones that you go
through together and the deeper relationships that you form so quickly make the friendship so authentic.

Studying Journalism and liberal arts, which is something I always knew I was interested in, has made university and life experiences that come with it SO much more interesting and enjoyable. That comes to you as well, but don’t push yourself to choose a certain career path, or to think you want to be something just because your friends want to become a doctor, a scientist, or a teacher. I would also say, be absolutely certain that university is what you want to do. Don’t go because your friends are, or your sister has or you cousins are going, make that choice for yourself. If it isn’t something you want to do, you can start an apprenticeship or even start an amazing job. Life, work and happiness are more than possible without a degree.

University is a blessing, being able to completely concentrate on one subject that you enjoy and want to know more about, which in my case is Journalism and Liberal arts, is such an amazing experience. First year is all about having fun, but also make sure you leave some time to concentrate on work, it’s not a lot, but you’ll be grateful that you paid some attention to it when second year comes around. The work load is different to school or college, I aim more towards coursework, I feel like I can concentrate more and express myself as an individual more accurately, but it is also easier to build a portfolio of work for potential job opportunities when doing coursework. Journalism is a tough industry to go into, its competitive and you’ve got to be strong willed, but that’s the beauty of university, they give you all these skills and help to build your confidence so that you’re not just thrown into the world afterwards feeling lost or confused. Having the added bonus of the Liberal arts part of my degree has helped me focus on other topics which, in time, will help me in my career as well. It’s all about focusing on the future and thinking about what will help you in the long run, and also what interests you at the time.

Life is hard and life is challenging, but most of all its a load of fun. Surround yourself with positive people, have a positive mindset and just have a blast. My last bit of advice to you would be to just always enjoy every moment, start a diary, write it all down, make memories, take pictures and only do
things for yourself. Focus on your happiness and if you need to take a day or two to be on your own and think things through, or just need to take a minute to yourself, do it. There will be ups and downs but it will all be worth it in the end.

Be yourself, love yourself and respect yourself, and the rest will follow.



Dear Ruth Harris