I love lists. I make lists for my cats, I make lists for what yoga asanas I want to work on, and I make lists of all the Lush products I own (true story; they’re all categorised by item type). So as you can tell, lists are major in my life, and as 2017 has come to an end, I only felt it natural to write a list of things I took away from this year of love and loss.
- There’s no point being afraid most of the time.
- I suffer from Health Anxiety, which to put it in a nutshell, means I’m fixated with the idea that I have an illness or will be afflicted with one. This has consumed the better part of 2017 (11 months of it, if I’m being specific), and I spent most of my time being scared shitless. I dropped a quarter of my body weight because I developed a severe case of acid reflux, and was too scared to eat anything other than labneh, toast, and bananas for 9 months. Imagine, 9 months without pizza. WITHOUT FREAKING PIZZA. I’m a little better now, but if I feel any pain anywhere on my body I’m already thinking worst case scenarios. If this is something you suffer from, go seek professional help immediately; this isn’t something you can treat yourself by reflecting on life and mindful colouring. Trust me.
- Do what you love.
- Whether it’s petting cats all day, or building an empire. DO IT. Be a boss and never be afraid to go after your dreams. If you fail, then high five to you for trying; all you have to do now is get back on that proverbial horse and go after another dream. In January 2017, I quit my corporate job that provided me with a steady salary, medical insurance, a budding career because I didn’t feel like I belonged to the humdrum of the corporate life (plus, office politics were draining me mentally). With my mental wellness on the line, I did what any self-respecting person would do, and I “Bye, Felicia”-ed that joint! I returned to my radio job after a 5 year hiatus, and even though there were hiccups here and there, when you love something you don’t just let go. You hold on to your passion with every fibre of your being, because it’s what gets you out of the bed every morning. And that’s what being on the radio does for me – it drives me beyond recognition.
- People will want to see you fail.
- Whether it’s a friend, manager, or colleague there will always be at least one person that, unfortunately for them, revels in seeing you fail. I’ve been in the middle of one too many of these circles of hate. And yes, it drained me emotionally and mentally, and I felt defeated to the point where I wanted to give up (and in some cases, I have). But you know what I realised? When people try to tear you down, it’s because of the insecurities that fester deep within themselves; it has nothing to do with you as a person. This dawned on me after months of being bullied, but I blame myself for not taking charge of my emotions earlier. Here I am now, persevering, following passions, and being the best version of myself that I can be.
- People are going to leave.
- My best friend, of four years, and I broke up last year after an argument that turned very ugly very fast. Words were said, feelings were hurt, and our friendship died. It’s been extremely difficult, and I’ve been mourning the end of the friendship for months, but it’s also made me appreciate the people in my life who accept me fully for who I am.
- Yoga is life.
- Yoga is life! I had to put a halt to my yoga journey earlier last year because of how crippled acid reflux made me feel; I couldn’t even do downward dog without thinking I was having a heart attack. Ugh, what an awful time that was. Now, I’m doing headstands and practicing Ashtanga yoga like it isn’t anyone’s business!
- Love yourself, always.
- This realisation didn’t come to me overnight. Honestly, I still struggle with the notion of loving myself, because there are so many things I feel very insecure about – uhh, hello anxiety (but really, goodbye already). From the anxiety that clouds my mind, to breaking up with my best friend, learning to love myself was an amalgamation of my experiences last year. How wonderful is it that from the worst of experiences blossoms something so beautiful!
If I’m going to leave you (and myself) with advice for 2018 it’s to avoid regrets, develop yourself, support others, and always do good.
Happy New Year!