Parker McCollum Explains His Surprising Word Of Advice To His Younger Self

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Parker McCollum poured his heart into his “Pretty Heart” performance at the Academy of Country Music Awards in Las Vegas on Monday night (March 7), a show where he arrived as the New Male Artist of the Year. That’s just one of McCollum’s latest milestones, which don’t seem to be slowing down any time soon.

That’s why the message McCollum would tell himself if he had a time machine might seem odd at first.

When asked what he would tell his younger self, McCollum told media outlets at the ACMs that he would tell himself to “slow down.” Here’s why:

“I would tell (my younger self) to slow down. I was so obsessed with — and have been, since I was a kid, with — just getting there, getting there, getting there. I think there were some times where I wish I would’ve stopped and smelled the roses, for lack of a better explanation or expression. …All my 20s just seem like a blur. I enjoyed a lot of it, and saw a lot of success and it’s been great, but I don’t think I needed to move as quickly as I thought I did when I was a kid. I would just tell him to ’slow it down, man. Take it easy.’ If you’re good, you’ll get there.”

McCollum is also gearing up to marry his fiancé, and has already clarified that he won’t be singing at his own wedding — his “day off” — unless his future father-in-law writes the check. Instead, he expressed gratitude for performing at the ACMs: “…‘Pretty Heart’ changed my life. ‘Pretty Heart’ gave me everything that I always wondered if I was talented enough to achieve, and that song brought me all that.” Watch part of his performance here: