31 december 2018

When a door closes another one opens: Goodbye 2018, hello 2019.

December 31st. The last year of 2018. A year that has been different than all other years, a year where I can't think about anything negative. A year I changed in a lot of different ways.
These are my hightlights of 2018.

Photo by Rakicevic Nenad from Pexels (free stock photo)

In the beginning of 2018 I was that 27 year old girl that has never been loved before. I was incredibly insecure when it came to being in love. Even being around good looking guys was a struggle. Hashtag awkward. This all changed when I suddenly started to like someone, and for the first time the guy liked me back. Now I am typing this, I am still single, but I am having a great time with a guy that meant the world to me this year. We haven't put a label on it, but at this point of our lives it is more important to have fun and live in the here and now and work on ourselves. We will see where things are going in 2019. Hopefully a positive way!

The second big change for me was my 'going out' lifestyle. I used to be a very frequent concert visitor. I used to go to at least twenty gigs a year since 2009. It has been a wonderful couple of years, but I got slightly tired of my life being this way. As an introvert it can take a long time to recover from a fun weekend out and the older I get, the harder it gets. I still go to a concert occasionally, but not as frequent as before. I completely quit going on nights out because it messes up with my sleeping pattern way too much. I value my sleep way more than a night out, It doesn't mean I can't ever be social anymore, it means I prefer to spend a weekend having fun in someone's home to watch a movie or play games and sleep around midnight instead of going to a bar with loud music until 4am. On weekdays I'll be in bed around between 8pm and 10pm and it feels good to me.

The third big change is that I became interested in minimalism. When I say the word minimalism, a lot of people would think about spotless, black/white houses that barely have any stuff in it and people living from a backpack only. That's not MY way of minimalism. Truth is, minimalism comes in different shapes and sizes. I learned how to consume less and save more money, how to live with a little less clothes, knick-knacks and clutter around the house. I learned how to live with stuff that makes me a truly happy person. That doesn't mean living with nothing at all, there is a ton of stuff that makes me happy. If your book collection makes you a happy person, you can be a minimalist with a book collection. Don't let anyone tell you that you can't live like that. The last part of minimalism I still need to tackle is relationships. Who of my friends fits in my current life with my new hobbies and interests? Who doesn't? Who does and doesn't accept that I won't do certain things I used to do anymore? That's something I still have to figure out the upcoming year.

The fourth thing is that I went on a solo trip to Manchester and Leeds. Solo trips abroad are always special to me. It gives me space and time far away from the people I spend time with in the daily life. It gives me time to think about myself and what I want in life. It gives me challenges, because as a shy introvert I sometimes even suck at ordering food in a restaurant. Being alone abroad also give me freedom. Freedom to go wherever I want to go, on whatever time I want to go. I don't need someone else's opinion on what to eat or not, when to leave to the airport or not. I can be boring and stay in the hotel all day and no one will judge me, or I can do tons of stuff and walk 25k on one day and no one will judge me either.

The fifth and last big change is that I got a permanent contract at work, My job is something totally unrelated to what I studied for, but it makes happier than doing anything I studied for. I have very nice co-workers, we are a good team, I feel accepted and I have no stress or pressure at all. It has everything I value more than money and everything I need in order to be my positive self. I need money to live obviously, and no with 17,5 hours a week I definitely don't have the fattest paycheck at the end of the month, but I have more than enough time to work on my creativity and to figure out what I want to do as a side job. This is the first job I can be 100% myself in for 1,5 years now. It means a lot to me I got a permanent contract. It makes me feel valued and gives me some security in my life. Ofcourse, like every job there are negative sides aswell, like getting up around 4:30am and being covered in dirt/soil by the end of my shift, needing to take a nap every day after work and ohhh what a struggle it was working with 38 degrees this summer. But hey, let's focus on the positive parts here. ;) I'm feeling good and that's what counts.

2018 was a beautiful year. It was full of positive changes and I learned a lot about myself. I'll enter 2019 with positive vibes and hope to improve my life even more in different ways,

How was your year? What were your highlights? What was your biggest life lesson this year?

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