2016 was a big year: I took on Youtube as my full-time source of income, graduated university, began & ended a new & wonderful relationship, traveled Europe, and took a huge step forward into what I thought was "adulting" and "figuring my shit out".
Some thoughts & things I have learned:
Never Stop Learning. Read more books, study a new language, learn to play an instrument, join a dance class, crochet, code, paint, weave baskets, anything. Regardless if it is through scholastic pursuits or passion, never stop learning.
Moving your body & being active is actually so wonderful for your mental well-being. Find an activity that you don't hate and do it. 'But how do I motivate myself to go workout' - drink a coffee and stop making excuses to not go; it isn't helping you or anyone else.
Being 'lonely' is such an odd thing. I jokingly state that I am lonely or am a loner all of the time, but I am not sure if this is true. I think that we are all actually very much alone - no one knows my thoughts or what goes on in my mind, but I don't think that this is loneliness. You can choose to think that you are lonely or not and live/believe either way.
Family & Friends are so important. This may sound cliche and redundant, but it is a statement that has become so true for me now more than ever. The people that you surround yourself with and spend the most time with in your day-to-day life will have the largest impact on who you are. I grew up moving to-and-fro and never worried about fostering relationships. Now that I am on my own and am more settled, I am learning that my family and closest friends are the most important relationships that I have. I love to spend a lot of my time alone, but also rely heavily on time spent with the people that I love (love you ma). Romantic relationships may come and go, but your family is there for you ALWAYS, and the quality of the friendships that you choose to keep around you will shape your life in ways that you may not realize. Quality over quantity, people.
Always, always be kind. Unless you're sarcastically trolling online haters - that's ok 😂
Travel. Another cliche, but again it is something that I believe very strongly in. Travel is not for everyone and I completely understand that. However, if you are someone who has always wanted to travel more or visit a certain place or country, life is too short to NOT go. I always stopped myself from traveling due to monetary restraints and didn't take opportunities that were given to me. Why didn't I apply for bursaries and do semesters abroad? Why didn't I do volunteer trips all around the world while in university? Why didn't I go teach english in a foreign country? It's not too late, but I do find that it becomes increasingly more difficult once school is done. I look back on my 5.5 years in University and wish that I had used up every travel opportunity that came my way. Traveling allows you to experience other walks of life and completely opens your mind to cultures that are so crazily opposite to your own. It also teaches you so much about yourself! Don't be afraid of traveling alone, it's one of the best experiences I've ever had and can't wait to go on more random & wonderful adventures.
Breakups are awful and there is no easy way around it- they suck. I am a true believer that everyone comes into your life for a reason and that you will ultimately make decisions that will be best for you. Love will come - but sometimes you need to love yourself before you can love someone else.
Finding Yourself. Being stuck in a rut and not knowing what you want to do with your life is the worst feeling in the world, it is an essential part of growing up, and just know that it DOES get better. Sometimes it can take months, years, decades - but you will figure your shit out eventually. Be patient, love yourself, and don't give up!
Life is too short - buy the bag, travel to that country, approach that person, chase your dream and LIVE.
I keep telling myself that this weird transition of growing up will pass and that normality will come again, but I don't think that this is actually true. Life is a complete roller coaster with crazy ups and downs, and we are constantly growing and changing in ways that we may never expect. I have been so worried about getting my shit together and being in a settled and safe position, but I think that the fun in life comes from never knowing what's going to come next. I am both excited and terrified for the future at the same time, and that's ok.
Thanks for reading you beautiful people xoxo