They say change is the only constant thing in the world, and I believe it. It's quite ironic that without change, we can't seem to grow. 2016 brought a lot of tears, joy and laughter. In spite of everything, I'm grateful for strangers who became friends, dreams that became reality, and nights that turned into mornings. I (well my Afro) got featured on Elle.com, relaunched my blog and met tremendous people, creatives, bloggers from different parts of the world. Looking back, it's so easy to dwell on the bad, and neglect the good. I'll just rather focus on the lessons 2016 taught me
1. The act of letting go: This year I learned that just as quickly as someone can come into your life and change things for the better that’s how fast they can also leave. Don't stay stagnant hoping they would comeback around. Don't take someone's emotional unavailability personally; this goes for both romantic relationships and non romantic relationships. You just have to appreciate knowing that person, let it go and keep moving forward. That relationship/ friendship won't define your happiness; if you don't love yourself first; no one will. If someone wants to be in your life, they will; so don't force any type of relationship. Remember, everything has an expiration date.
2. My sensitivity is not a flaw: my oh my! What a beautiful lesson this was. I'm what some people would call "a simp" and I would always take the blame for someone treating me poorly because my heart is so delicate. At some point I literally prayed to God to toughen me up, because people in my life would tell me to be less sensitive, less vulnerable. You know what forget that, I'm SOFT, I feel EVERYTHING, I'm SENSITIVE, and I grateful. I wouldn't want to be just another cold hearted person in this world full of so much cruelty.
3. The art of tuning in to God: whew! This is a lesson I re-learned over && over this year. As C.S Lewis says "When you come to knowing God, the initiative lies on His side. If He does not show Himself, nothing you can do will enable you to find Him. And, in fact, he shows much more of Himself to some people than to others -- not because He has favorites, but because it is impossible for Him to show Himself to a man whose whole mind and character are in the wrong condition. Just as sunlight, though it has no favorites, cannot be reflected in a dusty mirror as clearly as a clean one." When God shows himself to you, or speak to you PLEASE, Linda, listen.
4. Wolves in sheep's clothing: those same people who were cheering you on once upon a time, can be the same ones pulling the rug out from under you and hoping you fail. The only person you can 100% rely on is Jesus, then your family.
5. Do what you love: when when you're passionate, happy and just plain grateful to do what you do; then that's what you love and you have to keep doing it. You don't have waste your time pursuing a boring degree to attain a boring job that'll eventually make you miserable just because of the money. You only have one life, do you really want to spend it doing something you do not absolutely love? If you're passionate about something, God placed that passion there for a reason and no matter what, you will excel and thrive at it.
6. Your mental and physical health are important: You have to exercise. You have to drink more water. You have to eat healthier. Always surround yourself with loads of happiness, inspiration and positivity. Social media is a big part of that, be careful who you choose to follow. Choose the right people and the right works to fill your feeds because eventually those fill your mind and heart. Another aspect, of mental health that correlates with other points above is that people will leave you. Some in days, some in hours, some in months, some people will not physically leave you but they've withdrawn themselves from you. It's up to you to discern that and leave.
7. Finally, I learned that I can be so many things at once, and i'm fine with that. I can rock different hairstyle and still be me. I can have my roots grounded and still have wings to fly.