Pic by Hey Saturday
Happy New Year to you all! I hope you had a great night and enjoyable day however you spent it. So with 2018 now here, I thought I'd talk about some of the most powerful things I’ve learned from 2017 in the hope that you can take some value and apply in your own life.
As I mentioned before, I’m not really into resolutions and 2017 saw me play around much more with intentions. Good on anyone that makes resolutions and enjoys the process but for me, they feel too regimented, overwhelming and you can leave yourself ripe for self-sabotage as soon as you step off-track.
My intentions are much more about checking in with myself daily and asking myself how I want to FEEL. I definitely have goals, but I know I’m much more likely to achieve them if everyday I’m thinking about how I want to feel and leading with that as opposed to approaching resolutions with gritted teeth and stressing about whether I’m making enough progress and feeling bad if I don’t live up to them or see them through.
Some examples of my daily intentions have been -:
- To feel energised
- To feel alive (not literally, but truly alive)
- To feel what I'm feeling without worrying!
- To feel relaxed
- To feel creative
- To feel inspired
- To feel like I’m showing up looking a million dollars in my appearance
- To feel like I’m getting sh*t done!
- To feel like I’m offering value
- To feel flirtatious and playful (a fun one!)
So I’m definitely going to continue with this because hey, if it ain’t broke….
Next up, I learned that it does ABSOLUTELY NOTHING to compare yourself to other people, whether that’s online or off. There will be so many people talking and writing about their 2017 highlights and whilst I’m ALL for celebrating the wins and best bits, it can be helpful to remember that many people choose not to put out there the moments, days or months of struggle.
People often don’t want to reveal their ugly cry moments or things that have gone wrong - they choose to keep it private (which I’m all for) and so it can help to remind yourself of this just to keep some perspective.
There was a point in 2017 where I felt like I’d lost my way a little. I found myself comparing who I was and what I was doing in life, business and love/dating/relationships to other people and it was the most stifling and stalling experience that did NOTHING for my health, relationships or work life.
Later on in the year, I chose to abandon this and get INSPIRED instead of comparing. I’ve taken multiple breaks from social media, focused on myself and the people around me who really matter (because that has been a learning too!), thought about my work and business in a way that feels good to me (and took my time with that) and gained inner confidence back.
(On a side-note, a big tip I have is to switch off your phone in the evening. Read a book that isn't on an electronic device, do something creative or just relax. 2017 was also the year I read more books than any previous year and it's been such a rewarding experience that I'd forgotten. It opens up your imagination and can make you feel like you're having a conversation with a dream mentor depending on what you're reading!)
So, 2018 is all about staying on my own path and reminding myself the only permission I need is my own. It’s about listening to my inner alert system when something feels ‘off’, checking myself on the comparison monitor and it’s about not caring what other people think so damn much or holding off things in fear of what people might do, say or think.
It's exhausting to spend your life worrying about other people’s opinions and putting them on an invisible pedestal you’ve taken precious time and energy to carve out - that they’re not even aware they’re on!
A little more superficial, but this is one that has brought me a surprising amount of joy and that’s been rediscovering my love of style, beauty and wellness. I’ve always harboured a passion for these (I used to write a fashion blog and was a fashion and beauty writer professionally at one point) but I really dove back into this in the later part of 2017. It’s made me feel even more like ‘me’ again and I’m excited to incorporate more lifestyle content into my work. (Leave a comment and let me know what kind of posts you’d like to see!). After all, healing from heartbreak, bouncing back and reinvention can work on multiple levels - there’s inner work to be done sure, but the creativity and self-care aspect of style, beauty and wellness never goes amiss either!
Personally, I know coming back to this part of me has helped me reconnect to myself even more.
A good question you can ask yourself for this year is if there's a core part of you that you’ve lost a connection with? Was there something you used to do or love that you've side-lined? Don’t undervalue how much fun and happiness it can bring you by reintroducing even just a piece of that back again.
Something else I’ve been reminded of, is that when it comes to confidence and self-esteem, the more you believe you're worthy and what you have to offer as a person is of value, the more other people will respect and respond to that accordingly. If you’re doubtful about yourself, people have a radar for it. Your dating life becomes one filled with anxiety instead of fun, people you meet don’t gravitate towards you quite so much and whatever you’re putting out into the world is tarnished with your inner doubt and therefore isn’t received as well.
Simply put, the more faith and passion you have in yourself, the more others will. The more respect you’ll get and the better results you’ll have in all areas of your life. This isn’t about ‘faking it until you make it’ (urgh) it’s about practicing it until you believe it. And it’s a constant thing - I don’t believe there’s a level of perfect, absolute confidence.
So how do you even begin? Well, it's about doing things that make YOU feel good, not comparing yourself to others, being your own cheerleader, having faith in YOU, working at your crafts with laser focus, having boundaries, pushing your comfort zones to expand your inner knowing and being open to change - all of these are integral to cultivating confidence. It can feel scary but in my opinion, that’s a worthy trade-off!
Celebrating the good stuff in the everyday is what I want to end this post on. We’re so conditioned to focus on the bad, the struggles, the annoyances, the heartbreaks, the stresses. What I really learned in 2017 as I stripped many things away, was that when something good happens, celebrate it! I was fortunate to get some great press and opportunities before Christmas and there was a point when I might have taken this for granted.
This time though, I enjoyed it, I felt good about it, I savoured it. I’ve had some beautiful conversations with people that I truly appreciate. I’ve enjoyed experiences that at one time I might have overlooked in sight of the next best or big thing. I’m as ambitious as I ever was but I’ve truly learned the art of stepping back to appreciate and live in the moment more. This has been one of the best changes in myself that I’ve witnessed and it’s something I'll definitely be taking even more into 2018! I really do encourage you to think about how you can celebrate everyday moments more too. It’s a game-changer.
So there we have it :) I also just want to thank you all so much for all your emails, comments and support. Every time I receive one, it makes my day and I’m so looking forward to bringing much more to you in 2018. I want this year to be incredible for you – your best yet, and I’d love to know what type of posts you’d like to see more of to help with that. Do let me know in the comments!
I also have some other things in store for you but will reveal more in January ;)
Wishing you a fantastic New Year however you’re spending it. And if you are alone - know that you’re not really alone. The person you’ve spent every minute of every day of your life with is you - you are your own hero, cheerleader and soulmate so embrace that, appreciate yourself, show yourself the love that you crave and set some fun, bold and intentions that you're actually excited to live by in 2018 - because we’re all in this together and we’ve all got this!