Letter to my younger self is back this year, as we honour the 2018 draft class. Former Docker and Blue Alex Silvagni has some words of wisdom for his younger self, preaching to not waste a moment and to never take the opportunity for granted.
Congratulations and welcome to the AFL! All of your hard work has finally paid off but the real work starts now.
Writing this letter to you is somewhat of a cathartic exercise. With so much emotion at play and everything moving so fast it’s hard to take stock, be present in the moment and appreciate where you are at.
So, first and foremost my advice to you is, take a moment to reflect on your life up until this point, the people who have influenced you and the sacrifices you and those people have made.
You may feel like everything is moving so quickly and your focus is on the next moment, the next game, the next training session, the next season but within your busy schedule find time to reflect on and appreciate everything you are grateful for in this life.
You will meet many people along the journey, be sure to foster the relationships with people that challenge and support you. Seek feedback at every opportunity from those you trust, it will only help you grow.
Along the way, you will be challenged in ways you never thought possible. There will be many testing times through injury, form, team losses and self-doubt but take these as learning opportunities that will better shape you for the future and make you the person you are today.
The footballing environment is made up of a myriad of personalities from all walks of life so be true to yourself, be authentic, don’t try and change to fit in. People will accept you for who you are and what you have to offer.
Lastly, don’t ever for a moment take it for granted. Play each game as if it’s your last because the game can be taken away in an instant. Be present in it all and allow yourself to celebrate the wins. It might not seem like it now but time will escape you so take it all in and enjoy the ride.
Your older, wiser self.
P.S. You’ll cop a lot of grief for wearing tracksuit pants everyday but stay strong and refer them to Steve Jobs and the psychological phenomenon known as, ‘Decision Fatigue.’