I can’t believe that 2015 is coming to a close! This has been a big year for me – I finished college, started a new job, moved to a big city, and began my life as a real adult. I’m sure you all feel that a lot has changed this past year, too! Throughout these experiences, I’ve learned so much about myself and how the world works. About friendships, about growing up and transitioning to adulthood, and about finding my passions. Of course, I know that I will always still have so much to learn. But here are a few of the lessons that this past year has taught me.
1. Usually, the people you’re with are more important than what you’re doing.
I’ve found this to be true in many parts of my life, from work to socializing. While a wild night out can be fun, sometimes a simple night in with your closest friends is even more memorable. Friendly and helpful coworkers make a surprising difference at the office, and, of course, good chemistry can make or break a first date.
2. You won’t get something if you don’t ask for it.
It’s simple but true: you must put your needs and desires out there to really get what you want. Finding the courage to make these requests can be more difficult – and this is something that I’m still working on.
3. It always pays off to be exactly who you are.
Some people might disagree with this one. But the more life I live, the more firmly I believe that you should always be true to yourself. This is the fastest and most straight-forward way to get where you’re supposed to be in life. And superficiality will only hinder your search for genuine, meaningful relationships.
4. Try to focus less on others’ shortcomings, and more on their unique strengths.
I have a tendency to expect a lot from others, and often judge them for not doing something the way that I would. I’m trying to remember that everyone has something unique to offer, and sometimes their novel approach is more effective or appropriate than even my own.
5. Some people were only meant to be in your life for a short season.
Big life changes always come with shifts in friendships, too. It can be so hard to give up on a relationship, especially one that was particularly meaningful in your life. But sometimes it’s better to remember the good times than to force something that’s already reached its natural end – it’s ok to let go.
6. Rest is just as important as adventure.
Travel, socialize, and explore, but rest, too. Spend Sunday at home, curl up in bed early with a good book, or politely decline an invitation in favor of some alone time. You need this balance, and adventures are that much more fulfilling if you’re eager and energetic.
7. Sometimes, a long talk with a close friend is just what you need.
One of my favorite memories from this year is a mid-summer, late-night conversation I had with one of my best college buddies – about our dreams and aspirations, and love, and where we’ll be seventy years from now.
8. Take some time every day for yourself.
My walk to work is one of the best parts of my day. I love the opportunity to take in the city, start my day with fresh air, and reflect on how I’m feeling and how things are going. Oftentimes my mind wanders to one frivolous topic or another, but I often have interesting revelations, too.
9. Hold out for what you want.
Never give in when it comes to those things that are particularly important to you. Especially don’t sacrifice your own standards or dreams if the time isn’t right. Stand strong for what you believe in and wait, because you are worth the very best.
10. Give yourself grace.
It’s good to have aspirations for where your life is heading, but allow yourself the time and space you need to get there, too. Don’t beat yourself up if things don’t go quite as you’ve planned, or you get off track for a while. Give yourself grace. If you want something enough, you’ll get there when you’re ready.
*Check back tomorrow for my favorite Glitter & Grace posts from 2015.*