Monday 4 December 2017

Life Lessons from 2017

2017 is winding down now and it's about this time of year I start to reflect. I reflect on the things I've achieved, the things I haven't, and what the year has taught me. I usually begin making resolutions around about now too; pay off debt, start saving money, join the gym again. The usual stuff that tends to find its way onto my iPhone notes section never to be looked at again. Until November 2018 rolls around and I remember I promised myself I'd be a stone lighter by now with one less credit card and the member of about 5 different sports clubs. 

It's been an interesting year for me I think we can all agree. I became single for the first time in about 5 or so years, moved house. Twice. You've heard that story so many times you're probably getting bored and I don't blame you. This post isn't about what's happened in my life in the past year though.  It's about the things I've learnt. This year has been a huge eye opener for me in many ways and I wanted to share with you a few life lessons that 2017 has taught me:

#1 - Dua Lipa makes rules to live by
That song came out at the exact right time for me. Along with the rest of the female population who had spent the last few weeks, months, even years being strung along my some total f**k boy, I certainly felt 100 times better when I stopped picking up that phone at 1am and stopped letting him in. Thank you, Dua Lipa, for making me realise I deserve so much better. 

#2 - Enjoy yourself and do what makes you happy
I'd spent a lot of my life prior to this year doing things that made other people happy. When you're in a relationship there's a lot of compromising to be had and whilst I know it's important, it was so lovely to spend some time not having to compromise on what I wanted to do, who I wanted to see and generally how I wanted to live my life. I've had so much fun this year being independent and not answering to anyone. I've said "yes" to so many amazing things from gigs to social events to parties. I'll definitely remember this year as the one I reconnected with my friends and myself. 

#3 - Hold on to good friends 
I sent out invites to my 29th Birthday party a few months ago and about a third of the people who said they'd come actually did. At first I was angry and hurt that most people didn't even have the courtesy to tell me that they weren't coming on the day. But then I realised they'd done me a favour; they'd allowed me to have a room full of people who actually cared and wanted to celebrate with me. Good friends are really hard to come by but when you realise who those people are in your life, it's important that you keep hold of them. 

#4 - Not everyone has the same moral compass as you
This has been a bitter pill to swallow but something I'm slowly coming to terms with. I'm a hugely moral person: if someone is being wronged and it's unjust I feel I have a moral obligation to step in. It's how I've been brought up and how most of my close friends operate too which is why we're close friends! Unfortunately, I've come to realise that not everyone lives by the same moral code as me and it's something I have to get used to. Whilst I do still struggle to understand how people can be OK spending time with someone who has been unkind or bullied others, I have to accept that some people just don't care. 

#5 - Try and see things from other peoples perspective
I've really tried hard over the last year to ask questions when analysing people's behaviour. Empathy is really powerful, not only because it allows you the opportunity to understand why someone is behaving the way they are, but because in doing so, it can give you a totally different perspective. I've tried really hard to think about how I come across to other people too and how my actions and behaviour can influence people's opinions of me. 

#6 - The best things happen when you least expect it
I met some of my favourite people this year on random nights out and spontaneous trips away. I've had the most fun on the nights I least expected it and found myself in situations I'd never have dreamed I'd be in in a million years. All the surprising things that have happened to me have made me realise that everything happens for a reason; I'm exactly where I should be doing exactly what I'm supposed to be doing. 

#7 - How to be happy
I can honestly say this year has been one of the best years of my life. It's been hard, don't get me wrong, but I really believe that this year was sent to test me and to make me realise what I need in my life to be happy. I've never smiled as much, danced as crazily (at the expense of my ankle) and laughed as hard. I've made amazing memories, some really strong connections with friends both old and new, and I've become a much stronger person in the process. 

I know that some people will be looking forward to saying goodbye to 2017. In a way I will too; it'll be a relief to close the door on a year that bought me a broken heart and some broken friendships. But generally speaking I want to think positively and on 31st December. I plan on concentrating on all the great things that happened. I'll be celebrating the year I finally learnt how to be happy and enjoy myself. 

Do you have any life lessons from 2017? 

Coat - Shein - HERE

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