I wanted to share my main lessons with you because I really do believe that realizing all of these things has made a difference to my life and to the way I think towards situations and emotions.
1. It's ok to be selfish.
Thinking about yourself once in a while and doing what makes you happy shouldn't be seen as a negative way to act. What's the point in always doing what's best for others if in the end it just makes you unhappy? Sometimes it gets to a point where you just have to think 'Ok, it's time for me now' and you've gotta do what you want.
2. Things don't always work out how you thought they would.
Plans don't go the way you wanted them to go and people don't act the way you wanted them to act. But when this happens, things will probably end up working out a lot better than you imagined.
3. Things take time. Sometimes you even have to give time, time.
This is one of the most valued quotes that I learnt last year. Time will always make everything better. Whether it's a month, a week, or a year, things will always get better over time.
4. Having a hobby makes a massive improvement to your state of mind, more than you realise.
When your mind is going at 100 miles an hour and you feel stressed, overworked or emotional, just take an hour out to do something you enjoy. Go for a walk, go to the gym, go watch a film, go cook something. Whatever it is, do something that you enjoy and take time out from the rest of the world.
5. Friends make everything better.
Yes, obvs the TV programme is the best TV show ever, but also real life friends make things better. Make memories, go for dinner, go on random days out and talk every day, because you'll probably end up laughing in hysterics and creating private jokes, and nothing is better than a good laugh.
6. People will leave your life, but it's ok. It'll just make room for better people.
One of my favourite sayings to have come out of 2016 is 'k byeeeee' and that's aimed at anyone who left my life that wasn't any value for me. It's crap at the time and you feel a bit down when people who have been around end up leaving. But you'll soon find out that there was a reason for it and you'll feel like a weight has been lifted.
7. Exercise will help release anger.
Unfortunately walking around punching things these days will probably end up with you being arrested or being treated for anger issues. To avoid having to deal with any of these, I'd suggest trying a fitness class instead. I found that Body Combat let me punch and kick away so much anger and I soon forgot what I was annoyed about.
8. Comparing yourself to others will drive you insane.
There's a difference between looking up to people and letting them inspire you, vs resenting people and wanting to beat them. If you constantly compare what you have and what you can do, against other people, you'll just end up feeling low about yourself. Concentrate on what you're good at and don't ever think you're not capable.
9. You're stronger than you think you are
At the beginning of 2016 I totally relied on someone else for pretty much everything. It wasn't until it came to the crunch that actually I realized I can do things myself and I don't need to rely on someone else. Girls can do blue jobs too!
10. Things aren't always as they seem
Over thinking can invent a lot of situations in your head that actually aren't happening at all. At one point I was overthinking so much, to the point where I was making stories up in my head. Take a breather and try not to think too much, there will always be an explanation in the end.
11. Not everyone will understand you
Sometimes people won't understand your situation and you'll probably get frustrated with that. But a friend at work finally helped me realize that some people won't get you because they've never been in that certain situation, so it's hard for everyone to understand. If they don't even try to see it from your side then don't make them a priority in your life.
12. Listen to music
Put on some upbeat music and dance and sing as loud as you can. I remember one day last summer when I was having a down day, I got in my car and put on The Chainsmokers so loud and on repeat and just kept driving around singing and dancing to it. Then I drove back home and just carried on with my day. It was brilliant.
13. Be spontaneous and be yourself
I've always been quite a random person anyway, I go on days out and randomly attend events on my own. But I'd always quite fancied doing ballet. So at the end of last year I found a gym that did ballet and just decided to go and attend. It was the best thing ever. It was random and it was something I'd always wanted to do. If there's anything that you fancy doing my advice would be to just go and do it!
So overall, I learnt a lot. There's probably some things in there that maybe I should have already known, but I think they were definiately brought to light more last year.
I'm definiately looking forward to a lot in 2017. And it's actually started off as a good year so far *touch wood*
Is there anything that you learnt last year?