The end of the year is swiftly approaching, and if you are anything like me, you probably have sat down for a moment to take stock of all that you accomplished, failed, and survived throughout the past year.
I stared at my journal for almost an hour, not even knowing where to start. For me, this year was beyond transformative. I recall a quote that reads, “some years ask questions, and others answer.” The past three years had asked so many questions that I could have drowned in them. This past year, 2022, answered. After scribbling feverishly for hours in my little notebook, I realized I had written out ten major lessons that I had learned.
Here are just three of the valuable insights that I was gifted this year:
Sometimes, self-care means doing the thing that you don’t want to do.
While self-care has rightly become an incredibly popular and essential part of one’s mental health support, self-care extends beyond face masks and treating yourself to a Starbucks drink. Taking part in a fun hygiene ritual and splurging every now and then on a yummy coffee absolutely contributes to your well-being, but genuine soulful self-care comes from the not-so-funs. It’s apologizing when you know that you’ve done wrong so that you can have peace in your life. It’s going to therapy, even when you don’t feel like attending your session. It’s leaving the boyfriend or girlfriend that makes you feel bad about yourself. It’s going for a walk when all you want to do is curl up in bed all day. There were dozens of times this year where the easier option at the moment would have been the worse option in the long run, and through my new understanding of what self-care means, I was able to recognize the importance of supporting my ‘tomorrow’ self, instead of only catering to my ‘right now’ self.
You have to learn to accept that every single thing is out of your control except for you.
You cannot command loyalty, you cannot force a positive outcome from another person. As much as you may feel compelled to, it is impossible for you to control the situations around you. All you are able to do is conduct yourself in those situations in a manner that you can feel good about. In 2022, I consciously and repeatedly took myself out of the mindset of, “if I could just do x for them,” or, “if only I could tell them what to do,” and replaced it with, “I am not them, so I shouldn’t try to place myself in their position.”
It’s never the end of the world until it is.
This may seem the most obvious, but for someone like me who suffers (and I don’t use the word suffer lightly) with nearly crippling anxiety, it has been one of the most grounding things that have been said to me. No matter what your situation is, whatever debacle you find yourself in, it is not the end of the world. Your dilemma will pass, and the world will keep spinning. The people around you will move on and forward, as will you. So in the midst of hardship, remind yourself that the earth will keep turning, and you will keep turning.
Reflection brings us our greatest growth, and only through growth can we become who we are meant to be. For 2023, we wish you an abundance of growth, radical self-love, and inner balance.
To read more lessons our team learned this year, check out Winter 2023: Faith, only $1.99!
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