2019 has officially started and I wanted to stop for a moment, take a step back and let you have a glimpse of what 2018 looked, for me.
I must confess that, as a little girl, I’ve always made lots of plans, to-do lists, and journals filled with endless goals and I always managed to accomplish what was on the list. , things that seemed interesting and passionate me (learning a new language, moving to a new country, joining a renowned university, learning to dance, writing a book… etc.) but this list has never really planned on how to love myself, how to move forward when everything else goes into a spin, how to overcome the loss of a loved one, how not to succumb to the tempting call of depression… and so on. This list was not meant to teach me the true meaning of life, I’ve always been good at executing any of what was written on it, but in the process of doing it, I forgot to enjoy it, simply. When I was young, I’ve never been told about self love, neither at school nor anywhere else, the result is that I’ve accomplished so much for years, but I couldn’t appreciate any part of it, because I never learned to do so, there was always this voice whispering after each victory « no, it’s not enough » « No, go further », « No, you don’t deserve it yet » and so on … People around me realize pretty quickly how hard I am on myself, I was raised to never rest on my laurels and I appreciate this critical side that I have towards myself, it’s the same voice pushing me to do better all the time, but on the other hand, this voice is pushed to the extreme when I don’t even celebrate the little things, neither the big ones that deserve to be celebrated, appreciated, I learned this past year to temper this voice because the more I grow up, the more I realize how much it affects everything else.
The school or the environment in which we grew up does not always teach us to be kind to ourselves, to love or to celebrate ourselves, instead, we’re put in a stage of an unhealthy competition at a very young age, complied to a an archaic system that needs to reform its education…
One of my biggest challenges in life is to simply learn to love myself, fully and unconditionally and go higher in pursuing my dreams. Self love is the key to everything, it seems so logic when we put things in perspective, How can we realistically imagine that we can love others, at least in a healthy and balanced way, if we are unable to feel an unconditional love for ourselves? It is merely impossible…
2018 was the only year for which I had absolutely nothing planned because it was a year under the sign of recovery. The year that tested all my limits, revealed my strength and helped me grow to another level, I say recovery because, these last two years, I had to deal with a lot of things that rotted my daily life and in 2018, I overcame everything I struggled with, I got over a daily harassment that lasted more than a year and a half, ended up with a trial that was so uneasy but it ended after all and I’m just grateful that this is all behind me now, I also healed from an eating disorder problem that I developed at the same time due to isolation and too much stress … things we do not talk about because we cannot put words on it, things that are muted behind fake smiles and excuses because we’re afraid to worry those around us, and especially things that take up too much space and engulf everything else. This past year was also a challenge, I lost one of the most important persons of my life, my father, and even if losing someone we love is rough, we don’t have any control over this stuff, it is part of life, the only thing that we can control is how we react to the situation, how do we pull out the positive from the unbearable, and as Charles Bukowski says it in What Matters most is How well you walk through the fire
« Things get bad for all of us, almost continually, and what we do under the constant stress reveals who/what we are »
Life, for sure, always takes something away from us, but if we pay attention and listen carefully , it gives us so much more. This past year was also filled with positive things that Im grateful for, art, dance, love, friendship, support, courage… the challenges bring the growth. It is scary how something that we didn’t experience yet can seem impossible to overcome, but the truth is, if we have faith, not necessarily in God or a superior entity, but faith in ourselves, faith in the world around us, we realize that we are so much stronger than we think, even if sometimes we have to ask for some help especially when everything seems to fall apart, it gets complicated to keep the mindset of a positive warrior and it’s fine, it is okay to not be okay , there are some days where all you want/need is eat pasta in your Pjs and binge-watch Netflix all day (I’ve done it waaaay too much 😀 )
The point is, you don’t have to pretend to be okay when you’re obviously in pain, we’re just humans and at the end of the day, the scars we’re trying to hide on the daily basis are the ones telling the story of a health issue, a broken heart, loss, shame, birth… our story, the one that makes us so damn special. People don’t want to rely on a constant highlight, because it’s not real, of course, it’s great to show positivity but it’s just as much important to be yourself, even when it’s messy or ugly . Enjoying the process and embracing your flaws as much as your strengths builds a pattern of self confidence and self esteem within you, so don’t wait to be perfect to start anything you have in mind, you have to put yourself out there, make mistakes, fall apart, gather yourself again, and keep moving. Allowing yourself to be imperfect in public is precisely what makes you « YOU » and as you do so, you enlighten other’s journey by your authenticity.
I hear people all the time questioning happiness as if it was a sort of destination to reach, but it is not, happiness is a mindset, a way of thinking that puts a sparkle in your life, even when it’s not perfect, and the simplest way to add this sparkle to your life is to do things that put your soul on fire, things that make you want to jump out of bed at 6 o’clock to do it, there is no special day to wait for, no revelation to seek, no secret hidden by successful people around the world, no magic formula, only hard work and patience. Find something you enjoy doing, and invest more time in it during 2019, dedicate yourself to that and see what happens. I know there is also practicality, that is obviously a part of life, believe me, I do know so, but ask yourself what are you willing to do to pursue your dreams, if you need to step up your game sometimes, then DO IT ! Make sacrifices, wake up earlier, work harder. Entrepreneurship mindset puts you in a position where you are profoundly convinced that no matter the situation right now, there is a way out to the problem, like « okay, I have a situation, how can I fix it? » if there is an actual solution, then apply it, if not, create one. build that mindset and discipline that you need to face any situation instead of complaining, or dwell on why it’s not working. Build step by step, at your rhythm the path that fits you, it is what it takes to have a life full of passion, laughter, love and success, no matter what you define success as, it is what it takes to create your own vision
The only thing that is important after all is your happiness. So love yourself and do things that make you happy, the world will be a better place 😉 Now, I’d love to hear from you guys on the things you want to invest on, in 2019, if you have anything you want to get better at, this year, feel free to share and inspire others !