2018 is that you?
It’s refreshing to start a new year with resolutions. Setting goals has never gone out of style. There’s absolutely nothing wrong with having a desire to improve on yourself. It’s good because you acknowledge that you are not perfect. However, don’t be too hard on yourself when making these resolutions. Make it as realistic as possible. Change takes time and when you try too hard, you lose control of your life’s steering wheel thanks to anxiety. Relax, take a deep breath and take life in small doses because too much of anything is poisonous.
As for me, 2017 has been the best and worst year of my life. The best because I finally got to graduate after years of hard work and bloody tears. Needless to say, it hasn’t been an easy road for me. Since I do not like to air out my dirty laundry in public, I’m not going to mention my Ls. By that I mean counting my blessings and not my troubles. When I look back I realize just how much I’ve achieved Alhamdulillah and grown mentally as a person. I’ve mastered the art of calmness during a storm, patience, and understanding. 2017 has taught me so many lessons and through that I’d like to inspire others to always stay positive, have strong faith in God’s plans and trust the process. I have learnt that what is for you will never miss you. We have to be ready for disappointments understanding that not everything will work out our way.
- God’s timing. This year has taught me that I need to learn to trust God in the hustle and bustle of our frenzied life. You are being molded into the woman/man you will be in the near future, all you need is a little faith and trust in the process. We cannot determine what God has already predetermined. I believe that the trials thrown at us are used to test our trust and patience in order to gain strength in endurance and steadfastness. Many people want change but do not want to go through the waiting process. Everything will work out in the right moment perfectly. Always say In-shaa-Allah.
- Find yourself. Take time alone to figure yourself out, your hobbies, what makes you happy and make a silver lining out of it; soul searching. Hardships are there to mold and strengthen us. Not everybody will like you and that’s okay. You will get misunderstood a lot by people. Your genuine actions might be misinterpreted and you cannot go throwing stones at every dog that barks at you.
- Never hold grudges. I’m always the type of person who forgives easily. But it takes many knives stabbed behind your back to the point you feel numb. I grew a thick skin this year almost feeling invincible hence forgiving easily because nothing really phases me anymore.
- Set your boundaries. Never let people use you or drag you down to their level. I had a terrible moment this year where I realized that I have self control and that I’d never bring myself to someone’s level no matter how provoked I am. Also, you do not have to justify yourself to people who already have set their minds to misunderstand you. Help where you can and set your boundaries. That way they’ll lower you to the point of being their doormat. If you are not appreciated for the things you do don’t bend till you break for people. If they don’t appreciate the little things you do then odds are nor will bringing the moon to them.
- Never ever settle for less. Sometimes life pushes us to the point that we get ‘desperate’. Know your worth. Resist! To be honest you are far much better off on your own than being around people who constantly drain you and never add value into your life.
- When depressed, PRAY! Prayer is the best solution. Meditate through prayers. It keeps you grounded. Patience is not how long you can wait but how well you will behave while waiting. Walk by faith not by sight.
- Health is wealth. Appreciate the little things in life.Everyday you wake up alive and healthy is a blessing. I learnt this lesson the hard way when I lost my sister 2 years ago and all I could think of is trying to save her from the illness. I wasn’t thinking of giving her materialistic things but love and my presence.
- Prioritize. By this I mean if you have bills to pay, do so before you blow your money on irrelevant stuff. This applies to all the things you value around you. Sometimes we take family for granted but those are your people and I’m not talking about relatives. If anything, they’ll never give you credit for even the slightest achievement you make. I learnt this the hard way, but never take it to heart. We are all wired differently and once you learn that, you will never be vengeful.
- Love yourself. Treat yourself and take care of your mental health. Love your imperfections, skin tone, hair, looks and body. Moisturize, exercise, drink water and stay healthy.
- Invest in yourself. The bitter truth is, you are entirely on your own. Be independent. Do not get too attached either. One of the best advices I’d like to give is that never be dependent on anyone or anything . Not your family, friends, lover nor your job (I’m sort of a loner so it’s easier for me). Most importantly, always have a contingency plan for rainy days; side hustles and savings. Expectations terribly lead to disappointments which mentally destroys you. Just focus on your goals, stay in your lane and never play the blame game on anyone. Matter of factly, life is becoming tougher by the day hence everyone trying hard to save themselves and be their own heroes. Be your own hero.
- Travel. Explore the globe, travel to new places. It doesn’t have to be international or expensive, even locally/ backpacking; it really changes your perspective about the world and enhances your creativity.
- Educate yourself. Read as many books/ articles each year and research widely on burning issues. Teach yourself new words/ things online, DIYs, e.t.c. Just learn something new everyday.
- Silence is golden. There are some people who are so shady and just try to provoke you by getting petty af. IGNORE, avoid, Observe and listen more, talk less. Give deaf ears to gossip and grapevines. Yes, some people can hate on you so bad and just find a way to drag your name through the mud feeding off of your downfall. As long as you know yourself and your truth, just ignore such sadists and just live your life. Because if hate doesn’t work, they’ll start spreading lies. My only concern is that I wish they could spend that energy in focusing on getting their life together than constantly trying to ‘perfect’ others’.
- Give without expectations. Give with one heart and never expect anything in return nor brag about it. It leaves no room for disappointments, hence peace of mind.
- Stay Kind. Kill your ‘enemies’ with kindness. Smile more and practice Courteous words more often. Never be bias with your kindness. Treat the janitor with the same respect as the CEO as kindness knows no bias because you never know who you will need someday.
- Trust your gut/intuition. Believe in the patterns. Don’t allow yourself to get burnt by the same flame twice.
- Be yourself unapologetically. We should stop changing ourselves to please others for validation, or stripping off our dignity to fit in. Also, never accept ‘constructive criticism’ from people who haven’t constructed anything.
- Stay low key. Do not prematurely announce your plans because not everyone has your best interest at heart. I learnt this the hard way too. Unbelievable!
- STAY WOKE. Observe your surroundings and protect your space. Playing dumb works wonders sometimes. Watch your back and play your cards well.
- Be picky with your friends and spouse. Also, support them in their businesses. Candles light up each other without dimming their own light. So be a candle in people’s lives. Let’s all empower each other shall we?
- Network. Take the initiative to meet and interact with new people especially of shared interests. Pride will never take you anywhere. No man is an island we need each other to grow in every aspect of our lives.
- It’s okay to have a good cry. Do not let the world desensitize you. Depression is real; talk your problems out to the right people (Seek help when you need it). Find solutions rather than constantly whining. Instead of cursing the darkness, light a candle.
- Leave toxic relationships. Whether it’s a relative, friendship, lover or job. Basically anyone that steals your joy and peace of mind; mental health is of the essence. If love is no longer served, leave the table. Know your worth and respect yourself enough to leave. Go where you are celebrated, not tolerated.
- Stay focused on your goals. Consistency is key. Be hardworking and stay optimistic. Be your own competition ( better than you were yesterday). When the going gets tough the tough gets going.
- Never live in the past. Do not cry over spilled milk nor water dead plants. Give yourself closure by accepting all the apologies you never got and move on. Never ever make the mistake of putting your life on hold for anyone. Trust me, it’s never worth your time and energy.
- STAY CLASSY. Never lower your standards for anyone. I’ve always strongly believed that what is for you will never pass you. You don’t have to go out of your way or lower your standards for it. Have strong faith and trust the process.
- Love conquers all. Spread positivity wherever you go. Do not let the world change your smile but change the world with your smile!
It’s safe to say that all the above 2017 life lessons have made me more mature, solid & well-grounded Alhamdulillah. It made me value life more, humbled me in every way possible and I thank Allah for enlightening and molding me into the strong woman I am today. I hope sharing these can make a difference in someone’s life and help with your new year resolutions in one way or the other, I really do!
I am going into 2018 with a bucket full of optimism. Fully armed ready to face any challenges praying that I’ll make it out alive. 2018 I’m ready for you. Hit me with your best shot.
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