Last year, I wrote a blog lining out all the things I was going to do that was going to make 2017 my year. I was going to be amazing. I was going to become see so many places and do so many things. I was going to move back to Nottingham, and have a great job, and a great social life.
Twelve months on, I’m watching a re-run of Lewis on the sofa in my parents’ house, where I now live, while I work at my old school in Admissions.
It goes without saying that I didn’t really fulfil any resolutions this year.
Instead of looking back at 2017 as twelve wasted months, I’m looking at it from another angle. It’s been twelve months of learning.
I’ve learned what I’m good at. I’m not just good at learning a few phrases in a foreign language and spitting them back out. I’ve learned that IT and computers and coding come relatively easily to me, and that maybe it’s something that I can see myself working in some time down the road.
I’ve learned my limits. I’d heard of burnout before, and thought nothing of it. I know when I’m about to crash, and I know what I need to do so that it doesn’t happen again.
I’ve learned that I’m a lot more social than I thought I was. That although I’m happy to sit inside and bingewatch series after series on Netflix, I like spending time with likeminded people. That sitting inside with no social contact outside of work is the worst.
I’ve learned that other people, no matter how experienced they are in their fields, are just human, and humans are fallible. It’s taught me to stand on my own two feet, and to trust my gut.
I’ve learned that if someone gives you a reason to be unhappy, and goes out of their way to make your day worse, it’s not worth the effort, regardless of how difficult their lives may be.
I’ve learned that I should be at the front and centre of the story that is my life, and I know it sounds selfish, but sometimes, you have to be selfish. If you’re not making yourself happy by doing what you’re doing, then you make steps to change that. Sometimes, those steps are painful or drastic, but it has to be done.
But most of all, I’ve learned that we’re all allowed to fail, and that it’s better to be open about your failures than it is to hide them. It’s so easy to look at other people’s Instagram feeds and feel that they have perfect bodies, perfect relationships, perfect lives, and that somehow, we’re failing at life. I’m just as guilty as anyone else when it comes to making my life seem so much better than it actually is, but this attitude, I’ve learned, sometimes, does more harm than good.
I guess what I want to say is that right now, I’m happier than I’ve been in a long time. Okay, my health is certainly not amazing right now, but it’s better than it’s been (severe allergies really aren’t fun), and I’m getting better in state of mind. I’ve got my friends and family, the best people I know, around me, and they’ve helped me through some dark days. I’ve learned who’s worth fighting for, and who isn’t. I’ve learned that making other people happy is no good if you’re not happy yourself. I’ve started to better myself, and I’m going to continue to do so.
All that’s left is for me to wish you, if you’re reading, happiness, joy, and health for 2018.