When you start to feel like things should have been better this year, remember the mountains and valleys that got you here. They are not accidents, and those moments weren’t in vain. You are not the same. You have grown and you are growing. You are breathing, you are living, you are wrapped in endless, boundless grace.
And things will get better. There is more to you than yesterday.
~ Morgan Harper Nichols
2016 has been a blend of stagnant constant and a whirlwind of emotions. There are many ups and downs; the good memories are to be cherished, and the bad experiences teach us valuable life lessons.
Highlight of 2016 is most definitely the countless visits back to my hometown to celebrate important occasions with family and attended three friends’ weddings. In between two extremes of being casually free at work to having sudden influx of workloads with near-impossible deadlines, I had several short getaway trips to Bandung, Johor, Melaka, Tanjung Sepat, as well as Singapore.
What I learn in 2016:
1. Set your priorities. Find out what matters to you, in terms of family, friends relationships, career progression, mental health, physical health, or personal growth. Understand what you really want, and what you are willing to sacrifice in the process.
2. Mind your investment. As we grow older with increased responsibilities, it is no wonder that we start to choose how we want to spend our time outside working hours. Relationship takes time to nurture, so make time for people you cherish.
3. Control negative emotions. A moment of patience in a moment of anger prevents thousands moments of regret. Whether you are packed with hormones or simply having a bad day, ask yourself this: is it worth transferring the anger to someone else?
4. Never stop learning. Mistakes do not make us less of a person; it makes us human. Being a better person is with each wrong we try to make right. It is about doing what is right instead of what we want. It is about second chances.
5. Persevere during difficult periods. We can’t control other people’s actions, whether it is insensitive comments but we can control our own. While it is easy to indulge in venting your frustration, complaints never go far. Change your situation, or change your perception.
6. Let people in. Perhaps the hardest thing (for me at least) to do is to let my guard down and trust. Keeping people at arm length and building walls up may not be the best idea after all. Take a leap of faith and you may surprise yourself. I did.
7. Expand your horizon. Surround yourself with people who inspire you, people who you want to learn from, people who are honest and raw. Everyone has an opinion, but it is those opinions that matter that shapes who you want to be. Human interaction is a tricky skill to acquire, that can only be polished with time and experience.
Seven is an odd number to end a list, but here’s to welcoming 2017 with open arms! Bring it on.
To all dear readers, have a Happy New Year 2017!