Tag: 2017

17 Life Lessons I Learned in 2017

17 Life Lessons I learned in 2017 | Motivation, Inspiring, Reflection. Lifestyle

Today is the last Saturday of the year and what a year it has been!

I’m honestly not one to make an annual review of my year because – I don’t know. I don’t like grading my year and evaluating if it was a “good” year or a “bad” year. I find it cool that other people do it, though. It’s just not something I personally do hehe. I actually recently read an essay piece about this and you can check it out here.

What I like to do, instead, is to reflect back on the past year and remember all the lessons I’ve learned in 2017. Because you all know how I like life lessons 😉 And also, my homeboy once said:

“Life is a succession of lessons which must be lived to be understood.”

– Ralph Waldo Emerson

So here I am, reflecting on the lessons I lived this year to understand. Grab a chair and a box of tissues or three because you might need it.

Or maybe you won’t but I might, okay? Okay.

17 Life Lessons I learned in 2017 | Motivation, Inspiring, Reflection. Lifestyle

1. There is no real world out there.

This year, I was especially tired of adults telling me about the “real world out there” as if the world we young adults are living in isn’t real.

Newsflash: it is.

Every hardship and every experience that we go through childhood, adolescence, and young adulthood will ultimately affect our adult lives. And this fact is backed by science yo. But also, like, that actually makes total sense? Because are we not molded by our own experiences? If you feel you’ve been told to prepare for the “real world out there” plenty of times, I have a post for you to check out.

2. Stop comparing your level 18 to someone else’s level 38.

It is never healthy for you, okay? As much as social media gives our comparison beast easier access for things it will compare to us, you have to constantly remind yourself that social media is a highlights reel. You don’t know what’s happening beyond that certain celebratory post or that beautifully styled photo.

3. We all have our own pace.

Sloths taught me there are those who thrive in the slow lane. And that our slow lane doesn’t necessarily mean the sloth’s slow lane. Maybe that’s just its norm.

In the same way that a squirrel’s norm is skittering at a quick pace. In the same way that a mammoth moth’s norm is a mere week more of life after becoming the huge and beautiful insect that it had become as it emerged from its cocoon. (Seriously. Sometimes Nat Geo Wild have sadder, more tear-jerker stories than any soap opera that ever existed.)

You cannot tell a life well-lived just by how much it has achieved in a certain block of time. We all grow at a different pace and we all get to where we have to go at different times.

4. You are allowed to be human.

To make mistake. To be flawed. Don’t let anyone say you can’t be like that.

Friend, nothing good comes out of obsessing on achieving perfection. Take it from a perfectionist like yours truly.

5. You define you.

Not things. Not stereotypes. Not society. You and only you define who you are. And on that note…

6. Let go of the people polluting your life.

Find yourself people who will enrich your life with support and compassion. People who will accept and love you for who you are. It is a disservice to your own self if you surround yourself with emotionally unhealthy individuals.

Remember: toxic relationships of any kind are like tooth decay. Pull that little beast out of your life for good and you will thank yourself later.

7. There are some things you simply cannot control.

And trying to control it will end in vain and you hurting. Let it go <3

8. There are some things that you cannot say.

I absolutely love the growing number of empowered people who have found the strength to use their voices this year. From amazing people who take the time to educate others of their culture even when it’s not their job, to the incredible array of individuals, both men and women, who shared the awful experiences they had in their workplace and community.

It is truly inspiring to see that more people have found how powerful their own voice can be.

But at the same time, I have also learned this year that there are simply things you cannot say.

Perhaps you just can’t say them yet or perhaps they are not something you should say ever. But I find this does not necessarily mean your voice is restrained and you are restrained. It just meant you are not harming anyone else by saying them. Does that make any sense?

9. There will be people with different opinions from yours.

Boy, being more active on Twitter this year really hit the nail for this.

There are as many opinions and perspectives as there are people. And there is nothing wrong with creating a discourse about your differing opinions. In fact, do so! To let other people see how you interpret and see these issues and share your opinion on them is the best way you could make other people see things in your perspective. And this I support 100%.

But there is a difference between “Look, here’s why I think you’re wrong and that what you’re saying is harmful to others” and “You’re SO wrong! Are you a freakin idiot?? I’m the one who’s right lalala!”

And you have to be careful not to cross that line. Otherwise, no well-intentioned discussion, that could have possibly taught all parties something, would happen.

Also, note to self: don’t feed on the trolls. They know they’re provoking you, Kate. Don’t be tempted. You’ll only satisfy them.

10. There is absolutely nothing wrong with indulging yourself.

Look, prioritizing and focusing on what matters are good and all until that’s all you ever do. Please, take care of your body.

Our bodies are not machines and, heck, even machines need breaks. So take a break too! Treat yourself to an ice cream after a long study session. Cuddle your pet for several minutes before going back to finishing that project. TAKE. A. FREAKIN. NAP.

Breaks are important and not to be taken for granted. Allow yourself to be human, remember? 🙂

Freshly baked lemon cake with icing and lavender flowers

11. You don’t have to show everything to everyone.

In this day and age, sharing could easily turn to oversharing. Which is not really good for most part.

I got to listen to this amazing podcast episode in Emma Gannon’s Ctrl Alt Delete where she and her guest, Rae Earl, talked about the consequences of sharing everything in your life on social media, along with body image and mental health. It’s a fun episode and if you like listening on conversations about the Internet and how it affects our lives like I do, you should definitely check out the rest of Emma’s podcast.

12. Don’t judge how other people spend the money they earn.

It is not yours. Plain and simple.

13. Changing your routine a bit can work wonders.

I shared this post on getting unstuck with life and I mentioned how writing my first drafts for blog posts on my tablet instead of typing it in my laptop as I always do helped me with my writer’s block and on actually finishing a draft. I still do it, you know. And it still works wonders!

See, you don’t have to necessarily change everything in your routine. You don’t have to do a complete routine overhaul. Simply tweaking and changing a bit here and there can already seem like both familiar and refreshing to your brain.

14. Don’t be so quick to assume someone’s character.

Just… Don’t.

I’ve learned this year especially that every person has character depths. Even those that you think seem like a cookie cutter of a certain stereotype. You just don’t know them that much to see it but it’s there.

And anyway, thinking of people this way instead seem a lot better and more compassionate and more thoughtful than to simply assume everyone’s shallow, right? 🙂

15. Choose to be positive.

Because you do have a choice. And you can choose not to dwell too much on the bad stuff. Another takeaway from your resident cynic potato (aka me.)

16. Find time for your hobby.

Hobbies are important, y’all.

I’ll probably write a more in-depth post about this next year but in the meantime, know that those people who laugh at your hobby and say your hobby’s ridiculous?

They’re the kind who don’t get anything from Santa.

They’re a bunch of sad folks who have yet to find their own hobbies. Forget about them. Keep doing your hobby. (Unless, of course your hobby involves hurting other living beings badly then please please please look for a better hobby.)

17. Don’t give up.

This may seem a bit cliché but hear me out here.

Honestly, there have been plenty of trying times throughout 2017 for me. And I’ve hit a real low at some point. But you know what? A small part in me had this cliché line on repeat whenever it happened. It was just a constant phrase I hear during those low times.

And so here I am now 🙂

Friend, no matter how “good” or “bad” this year has been for you, remember that, in spite of everything, you’re still here. You’ve reached this point and you’re 200% stronger than you were at the beginning of 2017.

You probably got new battle scars all over you too. But hey! That also mean you’ve got a lot of experiences and accomplishments on your arsenal too! Don’t take that lightly. It’s huge, no matter what other people say.

And you’re gonna greet 2018 with more resilience and more strength than you’ve greeted any other year before.

Don’t give up. You got this.

I believe in you. <3

I hope you have an awesome year ahead! <3

What lessons have you learned this year? Do you also have a wise homeboy? Share it all below!


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photos from: SC Stockshop and Annie Spratt on Unsplash

Little Things You Can Do to Grow Your Blog

15+ Little Ways to Grow Your Blog | Wanna kickstart your blog in an awesome way this 2017? Here are several ways you can do right now to grow your blog.

Hey everyone! Last month I didn’t get the chance to talk much about blogging, since I was giving way for holiday-themed posts. Which is why for the rest of January’s Saturdays (and probably February’s too) I will have a series of posts focusing on the topic, giving some tips that can be helpful to kickstart your blog this 2017.

We all started blogging with different purposes. Maybe you were bored or you wanted to improve your writing or you sought for a place to vent (this is how I started) or something entirely different.

But the fact is: we were looking for something and the blogosphere called to answer.

It’s such an amazing place, the blogosphere. It’s huge and you would think since it’s already overpopulated it won’t have any space left for anyone new. But it never gets tired to welcome people in. Never. It’s kinda like the Hermes cabin in the Percy Jackson and the Olympians series. They welcome everyone!

15+ Little Ways to Grow Your Blog | Wanna kickstart your blog in an awesome way this 2017? Here are several ways you can do right now to grow your blog.

Now as a blogger, there would come a time when you want to improve yourself and grow your blog. This can be done in so many ways and I’ll give you a few (ooh rhymes!) on each aspect of blogging.

1 | Your Blog Design

Out of everything here, improving this aspect of your blog is the most noticeable to readers and visitors. Your blog’s design is important in determining whether a reader would stick around long enough to read what you’ve written or could hit that back button faster than me saying “cheetah.”

According to this site, it only takes a mere 0.05 seconds for someone to form a first impression on a website and determine if they would stay or leave. Even more so, 94% of a person’s first impression on a blog is apparently design-related. It’s like a book’s cover. With just a glance on your blog’s look, a person will determine whether it’s their thing or not.

Here are few ways you can improve your blog design:

+ Create a clean custom header

+ Fix yo’ sidebar (and footer if you can)

+ Create your own color palette

+ Make a favicon

+ Have custom graphics everywhere you can put ‘em

2 | Your Blog Content

I find that the most important improvements for your blog’s content ultimately depend on you:

What are the topics you want to write frequently?

How often do you want to write them?

Think long and hard what your answers for these two questions are. They’re what will help you create the foundation of your blog’s content. But the problem is, they’re pretty subjective. Only you know if you want a niche blog or a nicheless one. Only you know how much you need to post a week or a month to create awesome content.

We all have different limits and capabilities. And so only you can know for sure if something is working well or not. No blogging tip or advice could give that to you.

Now if you already have the answers to these important questions, yay! Good for you! *hands you a rainbow cookie* Here are some more ways to improve your content:

+ Try Out an Editorial Calendar

+ Make Use of Categories and Tags

+ Format Your Blog Posts Neatly

3 | The Important Pages

What are the important pages, Kate? You may ask.

Well, these are the pages that any blog needs to have, no matter the niche or even if you don’t have a niche: the about page or the “start here” page and the contact page.

And if you want to go a little bit further, there are also:

+ Terms of Use

+ Privacy Policy

+ Disclaimer (especially if you make use of Amazon Associates)

+ Archives

4 | Blogging Etiquette

I say blogging etiquette as if I mean The Ten Commandments of Blogging or something, but I don’t.

The blogosphere doesn’t really ask for much. Mainly? Just respect. Respect for the other people in the Interwebs, not just the blogosphere. Respect for other people’s works. Respect.

For example: the “follow me” comments. Those hurt me. I mean, imagine yourself sharing something to someone and that person will just interrupt you and be like, “Yes yes, that’s nice. But listen to this one…”

That’s kinda rude, isn’t it?

Unless of course that person found you in a Link-Up party or a blog party. These things allow you to promote a handful of your posts so I think it’s no question to return the courtesy and visit others’ too. But outside these situations, it’s not really kind to do so. Like you’re using other people’s space to promote yourself or something. It’s spammy.

So how do you show respect to others in the Interwebs? Let me count two ways:

+ Give credit where credit is due

+ Be completely genuine and give thoughtful comments

This is where the growing isn’t only limited to your blog but also comprises yourself as a responsible netizen and, ultimately, as a person.

I’m telling you right now, I’m no blogging expert. Heck, even I am still instilling some of the things here or constantly improving them. *cough*blog design*cough*

See, I like to think we’re all a work in progress. And we can always do small things everyday to improve. And as I’ve said before, there is always a room for improvement. 🙂

I will be discussing some of the points here more extensively in the next few Saturdays so if you are interested in one or more, you can click on that follow or subscribe button so you won’t miss ’em.

Or, you know, just drop a visit every Saturday! My blog is always open 😉

What do you want to improve in any aspect of yourself this year? Do you have some changes planned? I’d love to hear about them!

Happy growing, awesome peeps!

6 Motivational Quotes to Keep You Going Next Year

Hey all!

We’re less than a week away from Christmas! Which means we’re less than halfway through the month. Which means we’re almost done with 2016!

Can you believe that?


Actually, I can.

A lot has happened this year and there were definitely moments when I felt like I hit the all time low. And I’m sure I’m not alone in this. So these motivational quotes are for those who need the right words to keep them going.

“You may encounter defeats, but you must not be defeated. In fact, it may be necessary to encounter the defeats, so you can know who you are, what you can rise from, how you can still come out of it.” – Maya Angelou

“You go on. You set one foot in front of the other, and if a thin voice cries out, somewhere behind you, you pretend not to hear, and keep going.” – Geraldine Brooks

“It does not matter how slowly you go as long as you do not stop.” – Confucius

“Things don’t go wrong and break your heart so you can become bitter and give up. They happen to break you down and build you up so you can be all that you were intended to be.” – Charlie Jones

“It is absolutely essential to hang in there—especially when you feel most discouraged.” – Steve Shallenberger

“It is common sense to take a method and try it. If it fails, admit it frankly and try another. But above all, try something.” – Franklin D. Roosevelt

Lastly, I got my own motto/quote to share. This one I’ve thought of just this year.

“Life is full of surprises. So always have a smile ready.”

I don’t know if that made any sense to you, but it does to me.

Have an inspired day, awesome peeps! 🙂