As I publish this post, I am actually sitting in the airport lounge in Vancouver, waiting to board my flight to Venice, Italy. I’ve been trying to find a small nugget of time to get this posted for the last 3 days, but turns out, when you go away on a monster trip, there are a gazbillion* things to do. Anyways, long story short, this post has been brewing for a long time….would love to hear what kick-ass things you’ve learned this past year as well! Here we go….
1.) My brain is really smart, but my gut might be smarter. In fact, my brain is like ridonkulously good at analyzing and planning and organizing and just being plain logical. But that’s not always a good thing. Because of all that logicalness, my brain is also a really kick-ass dream-squasher, constantly coming up with all sorts of good reasons NOT to do stuff. My gut, however, is just discovering that it’s actually a whole heck of a lot smarter than my brain. It’s like that moment when you suddenly discover that you know just as much (or more) than your parents – my gut has finally started talking back and rebelling against my brain. ‘Bout time.
2.) The person that knows me best is ME. Well, DUH. But seriously, this is like the hardest thing for a serial people-pleaser to get through their thick skull. I’ve spent the better part of the last 31 years doing everything that I think everyone else wants me to do, and very little time listening to myself. And while I realize that most people really only want what’s best for me, only I am able to really determine what’s best for me.
3.) Things will never be perfect. And that’s ok. So, I almost trashed the idea for this post of things I’ve learned over the last year because it’s been MORE than a year since I launched my first blog, The Quarterlife Quest on January 18th. It really bugged me that I couldn’t post this post on the exact 1 year anniversary of my first blog post ever. Until I realized that the lessons I learned are still the same, whether it’s been exactly 1 year, or 1 year and 3 weeks, or 1 year and 3 weeks and 2 days. Same good stuff, and I’m guessing none of you really would have noticed the exact dates anyways. Perfection is overrated.
4.) If you build it, they will come. When I started blogging, I really, really *hoped* that people would follow my blog, but I wasn’t 100% certain that it would happen. But the more I built up my blogging skills, networks and relationships, the more followers I saw. This new blog has fewer followers (so far) than my last one, but I have faith. I now know that if I really believe in what I’m doing, others will follow suit.
5.) People are kind. This might be one of the most beautiful and relieving things I have learned this year. I have experienced more kindness this year than I ever could have imagined. I believe that people want to be good, that people ARE good. I know that sounds cheesy but…..
6.) I both love and hate cheese. Oh, how I have struggled with this one! There is something about the self-discovery/self-improvement/life coaching vernacular that just screams CHEESE at me, and I am loath to use most of that language. I just don’t find it relatable; it’s too airy-fairy. But at the very core of it, I love it. There is something downright glorious to be found in uber cheesiness.
7.) Visualization is corny – but it works. This one kinda goes hand in hand with the above lesson. Prior to this year, I was totally NOT sold on the whole “close your eyes, picture your future” or “imagine that a warm liquid light is spreading throughout your whole body” kinda schtuff. But I’ve gone into it open-mindedly and have been pleasantly surprised.
8.) You can’t change other people; you can only change yourself. I think so many relationships could be salvaged if we, as individuals, would embrace this little nugget of wisdom. Too often we place the blame of failure on other people and refuse to acknowledge that we could have been part of the solution. Be open to change; lead by example.I have changed in so many ways over the past year and as a result, my relationships have also changed, and for the better.
9.) Downtime makes my world go round. I am not built emotionally, mentally or physically, to keep up with the insane schedule that I sometimes inflict upon myself. I need downtime to refuel – it’s just that simple.
10.) It’s ok to quit, as long as it’s not out of fear. We all grow up being told that quitting is a bad thing. But I’ve learned that quitting is totally and utterly fine, and sometimes completely necessary, if it’s something that gives you that gross icky “this ain’t right” feeling. However, that’s not to be confused with the “holy shit, I don’t think I can do this feeling” which can be quite similar. I’m still learning to differentiate, but I’m getting closer..
11.) Things come easily when you really believe in yourself. It’s one thing to say you’re going to do something, and do it well. It’s a whole other ballgame when you believe that you are going to do something and do it well. I think that’s been a huge contribute to any successes I’ve had this past year.
12.) Wonder is my drug of choice. Sure, alcohol, marijuana and crack cocaine are all pretty fantastical drugs (kidding), but I’ve recently discovered that nuthin’ gets me going like a magical dose of that old fashioned narcotic called “wonder” (note – this is not a street name for some crazy hallucinogen, I actually mean wonder).
13.) I’m no crazier than the next person. We all have our little secrets. We all have our bouts of insanity, our random quirks and our inconsistent consistencies. That’s what makes us beautiful. I’ve certainly had my moments, but I’ve learned I’m not the only one.
What amazingly kick-ass things have you learned this past year?
*gazbillion may or may not be a real number. Thanks No More Mountains for the numerical reference.