I’m not a “shoulda, coulda, woulda” type of girl. I make the best decisions that I possibly can in the moment and I go for it.

Living with regret isn’t in my DNA because I believe there is a lesson within every obstacle, struggle, failure or mistake ( if one were to arise ).

But my entire mission is to share the lessons that I’ve learned along this journey called life, right? I’ve learned A LOT.

Through years of bullying, struggling with an eating disorder, living with severe anxiety, dropping out of college, moving across the country and starting a business, I have a few words that I’d say to my younger self.



To my younger self who doubted herself, who believed she was worthless, who lacked confidence and the ability to speak up and to my younger self who still always had a dream in the back of her mind…

This is for her & anyone out there who might be struggling in any way, shape or form!




I had a bit of a traumatic childhood. I contemplated suicide a few times and hated myself. Yet, I had this dream in the back of my mind that something good was going to happen. I had this strong gut feeling even on my worst days where I wanted my life to end. I had this weird feeling that there was more to life and I had this passion that I didn’t know what to do with.

In the moment, we can’t predict what’s going to happen. When our parents, teachers or friends tell us “it’s going to work out,” or “it’s going to be ok” it’s kind of tough to believe, you know? Because life is unpredictable.

If I could go back and speak to my younger self, I’d tell her to keep dreaming. Because if I gave up, I wouldn’t be where I am today. If you want something bad enough, it’s going to be ok. You might struggle. You might want to give up. But if you keep pushing forward, everything is going to be ok.



Things happen in life that are often out of our control. What I’ve learned is that every situation is temporary. Good or bad. If you are having a tough day or you are in a funk, it will pass. If you made a mistake at work, you can learn from it and life goes on.

That’s it. Life goes on.

Nothing is permanent. If you hate your job, it’s not permanent. If you aren’t happy in your relationship, you can end it. Nothing lasts forever. Anxiety. Depression. Sadness or anger. Emotions are temporary. Situations are temporary and keeping that in mind puts life in perspective and helps you to work through the tough days!



As someone who dealt with a lot of negative feelings growing up, one thing that I was great at was pushing them away. Avoiding them. Not feeling them. Trying my best to ignore them.

No one wants to feel bad, ok? But in order to feel better, we need to allow ourselves to feel! We are human and it’s necessary to acknowledge our feelings in order to let them pass.

If you are having a bad day, acknowledge the bad day. Sit with those bad feelings. Journal about those feelings. Talk about those feelings ( if you want ). Don’t ignore those feelings. Ignoring those feelings will only result in a build up of more bad feelings.

The best way to feel happier is to welcome your emotions, feel them and let them pass.



I’ve started about 5 blogs in the past 5 years. I remember sitting at my desk in Chicago at 16 years old trying to write the first chapter of my book. I’ve always known what I wanted deep down. My intuition somehow knew what would make me happy.

I never followed through on 4 of the 5 blogs that I started. I just didn’t believe in myself. The truth is that you don’t know what can happen in life. If you feel something in your gut feeling, take the risk. Life is too short not to go after your passions.

When I made the decision to drop out of college and move to Miami Beach, I was terrified. But, I went for it. I took the risk. I began my career in real estate. That lead me to starting my marketing agency. I took one risk after the next, which lead me to where I am today.

Not taking the risk is the WORST risk you can take because you are risking your life. If you have an idea or something that you want to do, stop putting it off. You have nothing to lose.



Growing up I was told that I was weird. Dumb. Stupid. Awkward. You name it, I was called it, ok? I tried so hard NOT to be “weird.” ( whatever that meant ) All that I wanted was to fit in and be like everyone else.

But, I couldn’t. It wasn’t me. I didn’t realize this until I dropped out of college and moved across the country. When I made that life changing decision, I gained confidence. I started to believe in myself. I started to see that I WAS different. I started to LOVE that I was different.

I embraced who I was. Because who I was lead me to doing what I LOVE.

What fun is it to be like everyone else?

Growing up, we try so hard to fit in, right? Maybe we want to be popular or just liked. That’s what I wanted. I wanted to be seen as equal. I wanted to be treated like the other kids, but I wasn’t.

Today, I wish I could go back and tell myself how amazing it is to be different. The power you gain. When you are different, doors begin to open for you. There’s less competition. You aren’t worthless, you are actually worth a lot.

The people who are different, who are weird, who take a different path, end up doing some pretty cool things.



Nobody likes to fail. Nobody wants to be fired. Nobody wants to have to own a mistake they made or screw up. I used to be so afraid of failure. So afraid of getting that bad grade in school. So afraid of being fired. So afraid of not succeeding.

Here’s the thing: failure is the best teacher there is! The more mistakes I made, the more I learned! Whether it was how to communicate better, how to retain clients, how to create better habits so that I’m more productive. I could list a million ways that failure has helped me to succeed.

If it weren’t for failure, I wouldn’t own my marketing agency or have my podcast. If it weren’t for relationships that didn’t work out, I wouldn’t be with Pedro! Life works in a funny way and those who are afraid of failure aren’t ready for success.

My advice would be to fail as much as possible early on. Don’t worry about making mistakes. JUST GO and if you come across a failure, take note and proceed.



Life moves fast. When I was in school, every day felt like a century. You are just constantly counting down the days until the weekend or the next vacation, right?

STOP. Because of how quickly life goes by, you don’t want to miss out on opportunities. Take advantage of that time you have.

I used to have so many ideas and things that I wanted to do, but I would put them off. Even at the age of 16 when I wanted to write a book. Sounds crazy to write a book at 16, but who knows what it could have turned into!

I don’t care what age you are. Make the decision and act fast. Because more ideas are going to come your way and you never want to look back wishing you would have done it!



Like I said, I was bullied my entire childhood. I was called fat, ugly, stupid and every name in the book. Although I spent a lot of time alone, I found myself constantly surrounded by toxic people as I grew up.

When I went away to college I met amazing friends. However, at the time, I ALSO had “friends” in my life who brought me down. Who made me feel worse. Yet, I kept them in my life. I would give them the benefit of the doubt.


Once I removed those people from my life, I grew as a person. I was happier. I felt like I was surrounded by more positive energy. Although it can be difficult to remove toxic people or situations, if it isn’t bringing you any value, remove it.



Before 25, I really didn’t have the confidence that I have today. But, at 25, you are still growing and figuring out life, you know? We can’t expect to have everything figured out, a stable career and the confidence to get there at such a young age.

Well, this might not apply to everyone, but I am 25 right now, with a stable career that I built and I do feel confident.

This is because of the actions and decisions that I have made in my life when it comes to self care! I have always struggled with anxiety. So, mental health was a priority.

Investing in my own self care was a game changer, ok? I wish that I would have taken more time to invest in ME in my earlier years.

What I’ve learned is that taking time for yourself leads to more mental stability, which allows you to make better decisions and live a happier life. You tend to feel better about yourself, you are more confident and are equipped to take care of those around you.

Start investing in yourself. If you are under 25 and reading this, start taking time for YOU. Create a morning routine that you look forward to or find a hobby that you enjoy.

If you are a parent reading this, help your kids to invest in themselves. Maybe it’s doing something that they enjoy before bed or making sure that they have a few hours on the weekend to themselves.

If you are 25+ reading this, I’m writing this for you as well! Investing in self care is important at any age!



Fortunately my parents engrained this in my mind at a very young age. SAVE SAVE SAVE. Put as much money as you can away. I know it feels good to get a paycheck or a few extra dollars and then want to spend it, but that’s the worst decision that you can possibly make.

Enjoy yourself, but try to put away at least 30% if you can. Just a little bit each month goes a long way for your future.

One thing that always bothered me was that my peers, parents and teachers used to say that when you go to high school or college, your freshman year doesn’t matter. Meaning - your grades don’t have as much of an impact on your GPA.

  1. First of all, what are they talking about?

  2. Second of all, YES it absolutely does.

Your freshman year is your starting point. If you start off with poor grades and a low GPA, you will have to work MUCH harder to build it up. Whereas, if you start your freshman year working hard and get good grades, it’ll be easier to maintain a good GPA.

Does this make sense?

The same thing applies financially. The older you get, the more difficult it is. You have expenses and bills to pay. You will want to retire.

When you’re young, try your best to put as much money away and continue that habit throughout your entire life.

Stop buying what you don’t need. Splurge from time to time. It’s ok to enjoy life, but pay yourself before you make any purchases. Nothing feels better than having security in the bank!



Your life is what you make it. I could sit here and list 100 things that I wish I knew before 25. What I find interesting is that I had heard a lot of these lessons before the age of 25. I just didn’t have the patience or desire to understand what they truly meant.

I’m hoping that you found this valuable, share this with anyone under the age of 25 and if you are over the age of 25, these lessons still apply! We just see them differently.



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Sydney NanbergComment