Kobe Bryant Pens Letter To Younger Self

Photo by David Livingston/Getty Images
In a letter written to his 17-year-old self, Kobe Bryant reflects on the things he would have done differently.

In a letter written to his younger self, Kobe Bryant reflects on what he would have done differently.

The former NBA player explains to 17-year-old Kobe that investing in his family and friends means not only giving them material things because "it made YOU feel good, it made YOU happy to see them smiling and without a care in the world — and that was extremely selfish of you," but giving time, helping them grow, and teaching them ways to be independent. "Use your success, wealth and influence to put them in the best position to realize their own dreams and find their true purpose," he writes. 

In his letter he also touched on the rocky relationship he has with his parents and siblings, writing, "The most important advice I can give to you is to make sure your parents remain PARENTS and not managers," adding, "I’m writing you now so that you can begin this process immediately, and so that you don’t have to deal with the hurt and struggle of weaning them off of the addiction that you facilitated. That addiction only leads to anger, resentment and jealousy from everybody involved, including yourself. " 

The retired basketball star ends the letter with a sorrowful note, "Trust me" Kobe writes, "setting things up right from the beginning will avoid a ton of tears and heartache, some of which remains to this day."

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