I can’t believe in less than a week we will be saying goodbye to 2018 and hello to a brand new year. Before we look forward to a new year with new possibilities, I wanted to reflect and look back at 2018, and what a year it has been.
It seems like only yesterday I was writing my review of 2017. My mum didn’t lie the years seem to pass like a flash when you grow older. I think it has been an interesting year for us all.
The big freeze, the Royal Wedding, the heatwave, and the B word, that has dominated conversations. Let’s talk about that summer, it bought us Love Island, waistcoats, hope, and pride, thanks to the World Cup. The amazing heatwave has to be my stand out moment of the year, we got so spoilt with all that sunshine, I’d thought it would last forever!
I think for me personally this year has had, its ups, downs and disappointments, I’m still trying to find my place in this big wide world, in the real world and online. I’m 32 and I thought by now I’d have it all figured out. But to be honest I’m not even close. But I’ve realised something, that’s all OK. We all do things in our own time and at our own pace.
I think for me the pressure of social media can be a big factor to me feeling left behind or that I’m somehow underachieving. We see one image on Instagram of people’s lives, which most of the time is the perfect snapshot of a immaculately decorated home, a beautiful holiday destination, a happy family or a happy relationship, all of which can make us feel inadequate. What we don’t see is the before’s or the in-betweens.
I think we can feel like this when we see our friends or relatives achieving great things, like an engagement, getting married, buying a house, or having a child. The things we dream of achieving and sometimes ask ourselves why hasn’t happened for me yet?
I’m sure at one point or another we have all felt like that? I did and sometimes if I’m being honest with myself I sometimes still do, but it’s a lot less now. 2018 has been the year that I have finally got a handle on my mental health and self-esteem, one thing I am really proud of.
At the beginning of the year, I really wasn’t doing great. I was focusing too much on the things I hadn’t achieved yet and looking at social media and seeing all those perfect pictures, which wasn’t doing me any good.
January is the anniversary of my Mum’s death, which doesn’t set me up for the new year in the best mindset. I had a lot of feelings circling around in my head, I felt like a failure and that I wasn’t good enough and I didn’t know who to talk to, which led me to feel very panicked and anxious. I hated feeling like that, so I decided to go and seek counseling, which is the best thing I ever did.
I am now in a better place where I am more positive, and I always try to stay positive and try not to sweat the small stuff. Going to counseling it has helped me process my feelings in a positive way and help me practice difficult conversations with an impartial person’s perspective. It has helped me become more vocal in how I’m feeling and how to be open with the people around me. Which has led me to have better conversations with my friends, and has deepened my bond with some of them.
Another thing that has, shall I say clicked with me is that I don’t feel the need to prove myself to anyone. I’m more comfortable in my own skin now and who I am so I don’t worry about not being liked. I’m happy that I can just be me and if someone doesn’t like me for me then that is fine. Which is a real switch because when I was in my 20’s I wanted to please people and I just wanted to be liked by everyone. Think that self-assurance comes from ages, so there are pluses to getting older after all.
For some, my achievement of 2018 might not be anything special, but for me personally, it is a massive milestone. I’m hoping to continue this mindset throughout 2019.
On a slightly more lighter note, I have mastered paddle boarding this year too! It’s my hobby during the summer months.
What have been your biggest achievements this year? I’d love to know, so please leave a comment in the box below!
Bye for now xx