Wow. I’m officially old. I made my debut on Earth 22 years ago (January 9th), and here I am…22 years later making my debut on WordPress! My birthday falls fresh into the New Year, so I wanted to share some of my resolutions along with the most important lessons I’ve picked up along my few years of life 😉
2017 was a time for learning, failure, growth, and acceptance. Over the past few weeks I’ve found myself reflecting about my life as I get ready to make my transition from college to career (and beyond).
Some of the most provoking life questions I’ve asked myself have been raised from music. If you don’t know much about me, I’m a huge Bassnectar fan (give his stuff a listen – he’s got a little bit of everything). Music has fueled a drive of emotions from me I never knew were there. Take a listen to the first couple minutes of this SoundCloud mix (or all of it) where you’ll be provoked with the following questions:
Am I happy with who I am? Am I happy with the people around me?
Am I happy with what I’m doing? Am I happy with the way my life is going?
Do I have a life or am I just living?
Do not let these questions strain or trouble you. Point yourself in the direction of your dreams, find your strength in the sound, and make your transition.
2018 is going to be a year full of self-discovery, connectedness, and discipline. I’m determined to make 2018 the best year yet…all from these 22 insightful, powerful lessons (in no particular order):
- Be you, love you. All ways, always. You are only ever going to be you, so just embrace it. Nothing good comes out of striving for unattainable perfection…so be your most authentic self because you define yourself. Not the things you have. Not your looks. Not the labels or stereotypes you may have been associated with. Not your past. Love you; for every part of your journey is uniquely yours.
- Always strive for growth. Growth is continuous. There is always room for improvement. Set new goals, measure them, but most importantly – make them happen!
- Tomorrow is another day. Don’t let the past keep you from attaining what you want from the future. It’s okay to make mistakes, but make sure you’re learning from them.
- You only have so many “tomorrow’s”. Life is short. Multiple loved ones of mine experienced unexpected, life-changing events in 2017. Say “I love you” often. Make sure you’re present with others. Set goals and work for them. Do something that makes you feel uncomfortable no matter how small it is – like starting a blog :’) .
- Starve your distractions, feed your focus. We are so easily distracted and consumed by what is going on around us that it’s extremely difficult to focus on yourself. Do yourself a favor now and download this app called Moment. It reminds you how long you’ve been on your phone each day in half-hour intervals and (just discovered this) can ‘kick’ you off your phone after you’ve reached your limit. You don’t realize how often you’re truly on your phone (the numbers are terrifying!), but this app won’t do you any good if you can’t discipline yourself.
- You are your greatest motivator. This year I’m going to work hardest at being more disciplined with myself. With resolutions, you usually start strong then start to trickle back to where you started. Not this year. No one can make you care to want to change something, only you can make yourself give a damn and do something about it. If you want it that bad, you’ll work for it.
- If a little bit of your head, or a little bit of your heart think it’s wrong; it probably is. My momma used to tell me and my younger sister this all the time (she still does). If any part of you for a second thinks you’re doing something you shouldn’t, you probably shouldn’t. Trust your intuition and remove yourself from poor situations.
- It’s okay to cry. Sometimes you just need to let it out. Things get overwhelming, and life makes it seem like we have to be tough all the time. Crying is a form of healing, and healing is a form of growth. P.S. They don’t always have to be sad tears…they can be happy ones, too :’)
- Follow your own advice. I’m not always good at doing this (another resolution of mine). You should be your greatest advocate for your own advice. Why give it if you don’t live it?
- If it won’t matter in 72 hours, then get over it. Don’t hold grudges, there’s no time for it and just a waste of energy. It takes more energy to be angry than it does to be happy.
- That doesn’t mean everything should be brushed off. I’ve found at times that some people will take advantage of your generosity. Relationships are a two-way street . Let go of the people who have let go of you.
- Make time for “me time”. At one point in last semester, I never had the chance to be alone other than my commute driving/walking to and from work/class. It’s okay to turn down some plans to just stay in and enjoy a night to yourself. Make yourself an ice cream sundae. Start a new Netflix show. Finish that painting you started 2 years ago (Sorry, Mason). Schedule some “me time” because self-care is one of the most important things to prioritize in this hectic and crazy non-stop world.
- Make time for others. It’s okay to be alone sometimes, but it’s important to spend time with the ones you care about. Reach out to old friends or those you’ve been distant from in the last couple of months or years. While this day in age is all about networking, it’s amazing how many connections I lose due to busy schedules, distance, and lack of effort (on both ends). As important as it is to make new connections, it’s just as important (if not – more) to fuel old and current connections.
- Know your go-to’s. One day long after you’ve left high school and after you graduate from college, you’ll never talk to some of your friends ever again. I know that’s horrible to read, but it’s a harsh reality. At that moment you’ll realize who your true friends are. You’ve probably met them from home, work, school…but you’ll find out who truly has your back. These beautiful souls will always be there for you; drop anything and everything for you. Make sure you appreciate these people because they’re hard to come by nowadays.
- There’s always more to learn. Don’t stop wondering because there is always more to discover. Take every experience you endure as a chance to learn something new. You don’t have to travel half way across the world to learn something new (although that is an awesome way to).
- Discover new passions. If there’s something you’ve dreamed of doing or something you were passionate about bout don’t have time; just do it. It’s never too late. Pick up that guitar you got for your 17th birthday but never learned how to play, borrow your mom’s sewing machine and re-vamp your wardrobe, cook those recipes you saved on Pinterest but never actually tried…find something new (or refreshing the old) that you love to do.
- Different strokes for different folks. You’re not going to agree with everyone all the time. Everyone has their own way of doing things. I’ve learned that although I don’t always agree with certain things, I respect that it’s his/her opinion and move on. Each person has a different way of perceiving things and interprets the world based on how they’ve come to experience it.
- Nothing of instant gratification is truly ever worth it. The digital age has allowed everything to be so fast. Instant. If it’s not now, then we don’t want it. We’ve grown impatient, selfish, and foolish from technology’s abilities to give us everything we need in a flash. Take a step back and realize, what makes you happy right now may not be worth it in a year. What makes you happy in a year will surely be worth the patience and struggle.
- It’s okay to not know where you’re going. You may not know your path yet, but dive in; get lost; get messy; and be fearless. Whatever you’re searching for is going to take time, nothing worth it happens over night (unless it’s winning the loto). Trust yourself, go all the way.
- Everything changes, all the time. Nothing will ever stay the same – including yourself, or as Big Sean would say in his song Reasons – “you know I change with the seasons”. Be proactive, but also reactive. Learn to adapt to situations at any given moment because nothing will ever be the same as now.
- Make it work. Shit happens. Things don’t go your way. But take what you’ve been given and make it work. I worked for a waterpark for 5 years (that’s for another story), and this was our motto (no, seriously). You’ll never have full control over any situation, so your best chance is to work with what you’ve got.
- Make the most of the moment. Overall, live in the moment. Make the most of every opportunity you’re given. Not everything is going to go as expected or in your favor so dive into every moment optimistically and enthusiastically, and no matter how big or small the moment is – make it yours.
Although I’m just beginning this blogging journey…I’m ready to expand my creativity through new mediums, grow and improve my writing, and learn more about myself in a hectically simplified way.