Learning is a lifelong journey and growth is continuous, in 2015 I absorbed some necessary lessons. I grew up this year, this is absolute. As I reflect on my year, these are the elemental points that I now know:
- “Adulting” is hard work but totally worth it.
In 2015, I finally began to take full responsibility for all my actions, whether the outcome is good or bad, I no longer deflect, or become defensive or hide. I have accepted that my actions (or at times inaction and procrastination) have consequences. Whether things are good, bad or golden in my life, I have full control of me. This full control and this freedom to change my situation is essentially what it means to be an adult.
- Planning and reviewing are essential
Christmas Day 2014, I paused from gormandising and chatting to have a 2015 planning meeting. I sat and wrote all that I hoped to accomplish. I still have that notebook. They were good ideas: I’d write and post four short fiction series on Tumblr, one per quarter; I would get a part-time job writing (I did that but then…); I would write and publish a book; I would start a postgraduate programme; I would blog consistently.
Of all these ideas or things to do, one was fully done successfully, I have managed to blog consistently and post twice per week. However, although I told myself that I would do this in 2015, it was not until around July or August, that I got into a rhythm and I started to post every Wednesday and Sunday.
Plans, to-do-lists, and vision boards are wonderful, but these are not enough. This year, I realised that I needed another key ingredient to accomplish what I set out to do. For each plan that I draft, I must also review and adjust.
- Consistency makes a difference
Whether it is exercising, drinking water, eating healthier, meditating, writing, reading, or planning, all important life habits require consistency. The repetition, the robotic commitment to simply doing these things make a significant difference in getting them done. These practices only become habits when they are repeated and then in time, they become ingrained. I have learned the importance of being consistent in order to get things done. I am very happy that this lesson is finally learned.
- Gratitude Redirects Focus
Being thankful and expressing gratitude is amazing. An awareness and appreciation of the blessings and the goodness that are present in life has altered my perceptions. A decision to be mindful and happy and thankful for the good in me and the beautiful people in my life has made hard experiences, difficult interactions and monotonous activities shrink into nothingness.
- Forgiveness and Being Gentle
I am transitioning, as I seek to be more active, to work harder at fulfilling my own desires, I sometimes make mistakes. When I do slip up, I must accept it and forgive myself and move on. In the past, I have held on things, small infractions such as leaving the apartment and not taking out the garbage or large mistakes such as overspending. These missteps have haunted me. I now accept that I must be gentle with myself. In October, the Wednesday before my birthday, I became conscious of my sleepwalking. That night I walked straight into the bathroom door. Wack. I was startled awake. I managed to get back into bed and I was disoriented. How did I end up in the bathroom? And why was locked in? For some bizarre reason my mind would not allow me to let go of this incident. For the next few days I revisited that moment and I could not believe that I walked into the door. I am now trying to gentler with myself. A simple matter can become an obsession when overanalysed. I am learning to let go. And this is a lesson that I am still learning.