Lessons Learnt in 2016

For me, 2016 has been a year of trying to find some clarity, to figure out what my goals and passions are. Looking back on this year, I realize I’ve learnt a few little life lessons, that will be invaluable to me as I go through life. So for all you twenty-somethings out there, here’s what I’ve learnt this year.

You are you, and that’s okay

This one is so important. I often find myself second guessing my feelings, opinions, and actions, based on what I think others would do in my situation. But the thing is, only I feel the way I feel, and like the things I like. No one else is like me, and therefore I shouldn’t judge myself against others, because they are completely different individuals, and making comparisons in entirely pointless. To quote a popular phrase of 2016, “you do you”.

See your problems as challenges

This is something I have only recently learnt, and and it has completely changed my outlook. There are so many hurdles we have to overcome all the time. But rather than seeing them as barriers stopping us from getting results, maybe we should be looking at our problems as challenges, as things that we can work through bit by bit to get to our goals. Seeing my problems as challenges has really helped me to be more proactive at making things happen.

Things will happen exactly when they are meant to happen

This is something my mum told me a few years ago, and the older I get, the more it rings true. For me personally, I can spend a lot of time thinking about what I “should” be doing at this moment in my life, but not really moving forward, because I’m just not ready to take that leap into something yet. I’ve learnt that if you don’t feel ready to do something, then don’t force it. Because when the time is right, you’ll leap straight into it, and be ready to fully commit.

Don’t worry about the future so much

This one ties in with the point above. It’s important to make plans, and have an idea of what you want in your future, to give you something to work towards. But this shouldn’t take over your life. If you want a new job, then work towards that. If you want to save for a house, then do that. But just remember, to enjoy now, and live in the moment too.

Nobody really cares about what you are doing

Okay, well maybe that’s not entirely true, but what I mean is that we spend a lot of time worrying about what other people are thinking about the decisions we make. But really, how long do you spend agonizing over the decision your friend made to leave her job? Do you spend your whole day talking about that person on your Facebook feed who recently decided to ditch her teaching career to become a pilot (or something like that)? Probably not. If anything, when I hear that someone has made a ballsy decision, no matter what it is, I usually think about how brave and awesome they are for taking a leap of faith, even if it’s not something I would personally do.

So those are a few little life lessons that I’ll be taking with me into 2017, I hope some of you out there will find these useful too.

Guide To Goal Setting

In the last few months I’ve been making a real effort to get serious about setting achievable goals. I feel like I’ve spent a lot of time over the last few years thinking about where I see my life going, without feeling like I’ve made any real progress. So, after making this decision to make a conscious effort towards my goals, I’ve actually made some real, tangible progress. Below are a few steps I’ve taken to become more clear about my goals:

I wrote my goals down

This is such a simple task, but I can’t tell you how valuable this has been. Having my goals written down somehow makes me feel more of a commitment to them, and makes me feel like I have more of a clear focus. It’s even been scientifically proven that those who write their goals down are more likely to achieve their goals than those who don’t.

I talked to a friend

A friend and I recently decided to become accountability buddies, which basically means we talk to each other about our goals and check in with each other from time to time to see how we are going.  Talking to someone about what you’re working towards somehow makes you feel more accountable, but also gives you that support you need to keep working towards your goals.

Attended a goal setting workshop

Kikki K does these awesome Goals workshops (and many others). I went along with a friend, where we were given a beautiful Goals journal, and were encouraged to think about our core values, our goals, and working towards these. This was a really worthwhile workshop, and if you are struggling with goal setting, or just looking for a bit of inspiration, I would totally recommend going along if you have a Kikki K near you. Plus there is wine 🍷

Set up a vision board

I haven’t actually done this yet, but as soon as I have a free weekend at home, I’m going to get started on this little project. Apparently this is a really great way to stay on track with your goals. They also just look really pretty and will be a fun DIY project.

I’m happy to say that by just doing the few simple things above, I have so much more clarity on my goals for the next few years, and am have already made so much progress in the space of a couple of months.

So that’s a little update on what I’ve been working on lately. If any of you out there have some handy tips on achieving your goals, please let me know in the comments!

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Don’t Be So Hard On Yourself

In the words of Jess Glynne, “don’t be so hard on yourself”. I’ve realized lately, that I can be incredibly hard on myself when it comes to my life and figuring out what I want to do with it. A quick Google search of the phrase “twenty something” is enough to know that I’m not the only one feeling this way.

See, I’m 26 years old, and I don’t have it figured out yet. I’m not even close. In fact, I feel even further away from having the answers then I did five years ago. And I feel like I should I have it sorted out by now. I should know what my ideal job is, and I should be doing it. I should have traveled the world. I should own a house. I should have a clear plan. But I don’t.

I’m so focused on all the things I haven’t achieved, that I forget to take a step back and look at what I have done. Five years ago I didn’t have a university degree, and my work mostly consisted on babysitting and retail. I hadn’t traveled more than a few hours away from where I lived, I had never traveled alone, and I hadn’t lived away from home.

Now, I have a post graduate degree. I have had four years of experience in jobs related to what I studied. I have traveled far and wide on my own, have ticked off a significant portion of my bucket list, and more. I have moved out of home, and have made some life long friends along the way.

And when I look at it like that, it doesn’t seem so bad. Five years ago, I could have never imagined that I would do all that I have done so far. Things happen as and when they should. And maybe in five years from now I still won’t know exactly what I’m doing with this life of mine, but I’m sure I’ll have added a few extra things to that list above.

So tonight, all my fellow twenty somethings, let’s all take a moment to look at what we’ve achieved, rather than focusing on what we haven’t done yet.Stop being so hard on yourself.

I’ll leave you with the quote below, which seems pretty fitting to this post.epicurus