Tag: Life Lessons

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!

kate

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photos from: SC Stockshop and Annie Spratt on Unsplash

6 Life Lessons I Learned in 2016

So.

We’re in the last Wednesday of the year.

Is anyone getting teary-eyed saying goodbye to 2016?

I can just hear you: “Teary-eyed, Kate? Tears of relief, maybe. Good riddance, I say!”

I know, I know. 2016 was definitely not one of the best years for many and that’s saying it nicely.

But what do I always say here? Good and bad always go together. They’re two different horns, yeah sure. But they’re two different horns on the same llama. So they have differences and things in common and they always go together.

life-lessons

That said, I honestly believe that while 2016 was a straight-up birch as a whole (that was not a typo; I’m just cautious of younger awesome peeps reading this) even the Rainiest Johnny and Jenny Rain Clouds can’t deny that good things happened this year, right? Riiiight?

And to prove it, I share to you the 6 best life lessons I learned this year.

1 | There is no pace to keep other than your own

This was the hardest one I’ve learned this year, I think. I personally grew up with the idea that I have to figure things out as early in my life as possible. I guess a lot of people are. We’re all pressured to decide what our future job should be and start working to achieve it by the age of fifteen. We are all pressured by this internal time ticking in our subconscious telling us to keep. Pace. Keep. Pace. With everyone else.

And you know what I learned this year? This is all ridiculous. There is no pace to keep. You are not lagging behind.

I could go on but I don’t want to keep this post 8973 words long so let’s leave it at that for now. I may write an entire post about this next year but for now, you can head on to my previous posts below to see a glimpse of what I think of this.

Sarah Dessen’s “Infinity” and the Daunting Task of Making a Decision

Why It’s Okay to Not Have Everything Figured Out

2 | There is always room for improvement

I think there’s that tricky, blurry line between contentment and persistence. When do you stop doing one and start doing the other?

Honestly? I have no idea.

But what I do know is this: even at times when you feel like there is no way that you could ever surpass where you currently are now, well surprise surprise because someday you will. There’s a whole lot of space left in you for improvement.

You are a work in progress.

This amazing article from Brain Pickings (I mean, who are we kidding? Brain Pickings is an inspirational gold mine; all the articles are ah-mazing!) tells of two mindsets and how they could essentially change our outlooks on life and even shape it. This article strengthened my belief for this particular lesson, too, so give it a read. It’s really enriching.

3 | Your quirks are part of who you are; embrace it

And while you’re at it, embrace all parts of you.

Further cementing my belief on this one, I recently read this amazing collection of stories by A.C. Burch called A Book of Revelations (*Amazon affiliate link over there) and my gobbling turkey the stories are just plain amazing! One of the stories had this quote that I think excellently sums up my point:

love-yourself-quote

Edit: I forgot to attach this, whoops!

And to drive it all the way home, I wrote a post at Flawed Silence for Project Taboo where I talked about how I think every part of you doesn’t have to “make sense.” And since you’re there already, scroll through Kiya’s amazing blog. It’s filled to the brim with inspiration, delectable baking goodies, and spectabulous photographs!

4 | Don’t judge a person by how they appear

I’m calling it: a lot of people literally judge books by their covers *raises hands* but don’t do this to people.

Every one, every single person you met, passed by, engaged eye contact with, talked to, even those you haven’t met yet: they all have unique experiences you wouldn’t understand.

Okay so maybe you kiiiinda get it because you’ve been through a similar experience. But read that again: similar. Totally different from exact. Because, folks, even when you’ve read that person like a book from cover to cover, always remember that there is still something between the lines. And you may have missed it.

This is a hard one, believe me, I know. But as Judy Hopps always say, try.

5 | Take a break

And by that, I don’t just mean coffee break. (Or in my case, chocolate break) I mean, get some rest—physically, mentally, and emotionally. If you’re over-fatigued, sleep. I find that having enough sleep when you’re life isn’t as hectic helps in so many ways. I mean, if Arianna Huffington approves, go ahead and do it!

And if you’re feeling overwhelmed, nothing wrong with taking a break, amirite? But there’s a huge difference between stopping and quitting, mmkay? Speaking of which…

6 | Never quit entirely, immediately

So you got rejected in your job application or maybe a scholarship one. Will you quit applying altogether? Will you not pursue it anymore? Will you not try to reevaluate what you’ve done and see how you could change it?

Personally, this is the easiest lesson that I learned this year and could apply for next year onwards. But that’s because I’m plain stubborn. Well, a lot more stubborn than I was when I was a kid. I’ve decided to never let one failure/rejection/Johnny Rain Cloud get to me.

Now I don’t mean to never quit your whole life. Because there will come a time, when one thing isn’t working anymore, there’s no point in pursuing it further. I just mean that maaaybe you haven’t tried everything yet to possibly work it all out.

Whew! That was one lengthy post! But hey, it’s my last Wednesday post of the month and the year. The last post this Saturday (December 31st, holy macaroni!) will be, like every end of the month, a creative review and probably will include a short Happy New Year message. So we’re really saying goodbye to 2016 in a few days!

Onto you: what life lessons, or any lessons in particular (I’m not picky, I just love lessons ;)) you’ve learned this year? Share them in the comments below!

Have an amazing day, awesome peeps! 🙌