2014 was a crazy year. A year that seemed to stretch on forever, yet passed so quickly. A year of sadness and joy, struggle and sailing. A year to open my eyes and to see the potential in each day. A year ending in happiness and opportunity. A reflection on 2014 reads like a story, a story I’d never have imagined happening to me. A story not of possessions and money, but of realisation, contentment, and truth.
These are the lessons I learnt.
Don’t stay in a job that’s crushing your soul.
No matter what people say, if your job makes you physically ill, if it makes you dread each coming day, then that job isn’t your job. It isn’t your life. You don’t have to put yourself through that, there is always, always another way.
It takes so much courage to take the reins and stand up for yourself. But saying fuck you to the cubicle was the catalyst, the starting point of everything. I walked out of that job and the gates to the rest of my life opened, although I couldn’t see it then. It was the best decision this year.
Give yourself time to get back to normal.
Over time I realised that a lot had happened. Stress, extreme, prolonged stress, takes longer than you think to get over. Years, even.
Let yourself heal. Stay in bed some mornings if you need. Find something that gives you purpose. I started working part time for a charity and realised that value and integrity are much more important than the next promotion or earning lots of money.
One day, a few months down the line, I woke up happy and never looked back.
You’re better than you think.
We put ourselves down a lot. It’s a strange feeling to realise that people are getting value from your words, that people believe and are passionate about the same things you are.
Learn to look outside yourself. Try to see what others see. It’s hard, subtracting the emotion you feel from a situation. But it’s worth it. See what you look like, who you are, from someone else’s point of view.
Anything, anything, is possible.
If in January, you’d asked me where I’d be on 31st December this year, I would never have dreamed I would be here. In a year I’ve discovered and designed my life, building on my values and beliefs, to emerge at the end of the year with a life full of potential and curiosity. I have time to pursue my passions, I earn just enough to get by and am working on myself constantly, happily. I work, although none of my work feels like work. I have my own business, where I bend and shift into many different roles, tying together my passions for motivation, fitness, holistics, adventure and outdoors. I’m constantly challenged and surprised.
Even if you can’t see the way right now, believe me something is out there. Truthfully it’s taken me 2 years to feel like I’m settled, I’m doing what I love, every day. But I got here. The opportunities sometimes lie where you would least expect.
I can’t wait for the next year, to start to work on the ideas I’ve got, to actually experience life with a can-do attitude for the first time in ages. To look with huge, open eyes at the beauty of the world around me and to take steps to look after it. To continue to work with the most inspiring people, to create, to build, to love and laugh and discover.
Here’s to 2015. Here’s to the biggest adventure.