2017 has been a mad year, to be honest, it’s the first year I’ve only caught a couple of L’s. It’s been amazing, it’s had it’s highs and it’s had it’s lows, but I have certainly learnt a lot from it both about my self, and how this messed up world works.

I have gained a multitude of valuable experiences and I’m so grateful for each and every one of them. And I personally wouldn’t change this year one bit.

So here we go, 11 things this year has taught me…

  1. Personal growth over fake perfection

I’m kind of lying here, because this is what 2”16 taught me but 2017 was when I really put this into practice, and it was amazing. I spent a lot of my time in secondary school admiring everyone’s amazing looking lavish likes on Instagram. Wanting to have all the sparkly expensive jewellery, the perfectly shaped body, the fleekiest makeup, the nicest photos on Instagram, the most likes, the most comments… my focus was in the wrong place. And I ensured I had all of these things up on my Instagram, I wanted people to THINK my life was perfect when in actuality it wasn’t the best it could be,  I was so self conscious about my looks, and being that ‘perfect’ person it got the best of me…  I have used 2017 to stop doing that… to find out who I am without the need to show the world what I ‘am’. I stopped posting all the time, I stopped wasting money on nice outfits for the image, I started appreciating myself more, loving myself more. I can safely post photos of myself without worrying about what people think of me, I, ‘found myself’.

  • Lifestyle actually does affect your skin

Since starting University in September, obviously having to start learning to look after myself more. Having to buy and cook my own food! A big change from home life, where mum always came through with a healthy option with each meal.

Obviously coming to uni, means take always like every other night, chicken nuggets and curly fries galore, and jacket potatoes with beans and cheese.  And of course, my tri-weekly gym trips slowly became 6 times in one semester… that’s 6 times in 12 weeks… that’s… every other week… once. Shameful. But at the same time.. nah.

Let me tell you, my skin went on a *MAD* ONE. I have a good track record for smooth, clear skin- maybe the odd pimple here or there, but overall it was dandy. I suddenly became covered in spots, and blemishes and dry skin. I tried all sorts of skin care things. Only when I started eating healthier and drinking more water, attempting to exercise more, did my skin start to clear up!

  • Change, while sometimes hard, is good.

As I mentioned above, I started at University though September and that was a huge change and shock to my system, the transition from the familiar school environment to a new and alien area and campus. Packing up my bedroom, having to buy my own tea towels, bathroom towels, my own cups and bowls, my own washing detergent, MY OWN TOOTHPASTE (!!? huuuhhh) moving out of home and into halls. It was a crazy experience for me, and looking back on it I really did struggle – as I’m sure everyone else did- with homesickness, but it got easier after a couple of weeks and I’m so happy I stuck it out. It was a complete shock to my system, but it’s the best thing that ever happened to me. University has made me so independent and I’ve grown in myself and who I am- and I’m so much happier.

  • Life is a mystery

I, and I’m sure you have to, have had my fair share of shockers this year. Further proving to me that life is a mystery, we never know what is going to happen, and what life will throw in our directions. I’m not gunna bait out these ‘shockers’ because I have loyalties, but regardless some of them were a bit mental. I’m a firm believer that EVERYTHING, good and bad, happens for a reason. And I’m happy that life, although rough at times, isn’t predictable. Because could you imagine if it was? It would be sooooo boring! And at the end of the day, through the shitty shockers there were some awesome shockers, and the highs most certainly outweighed the lows.

  • Unity and co-operation is key in crisis

Various national tragedies such as terror attacks, The Grenfell Tower fire and brexit, have proven just how unified a people we can be in times of trouble. The very fact that in crisis’ like these, we as a nation, can come together, stronger than ever and work together to bring the community back to normal, or at least make an attempt to, shows how much we as a people need each other and how we need to help each other.

  • It’s okay to not be okay

I have had my fair share of low points in my life and have realised that actually, it’s okay to not be okay. And this leads on to my next point…

  • And it’s okay to ask for help 

We don’t need to feel alone in times of darkness, there is always someone we can talk to, be it a friend, a family member, a teacher or a lecturer there is always someone who will happily listen.  There is always a way out of the lows you may find yourself in. Asking for help is okay, it’s a positive thing. Many people put this negative stigma on things such as mental health, when in fact, if we simply paid attention to people’s problems and help them through it, rather than speaking badly about it and making people feel voiceless, it would be a much easier issue to tackle. And within this, whether my friends have realised it or not, they have always been there for me and supported me through some hard times in the simplest of ways. It is so important that we are there for each other.

  • You need to come out of your comfort zone more

I don’t know about you, but once I’ve found a routine I like, I don’t like it being jumbled. No one, not even my mum, could try and change a routine I have set in place. And while that’s okay, it’s limiting me. 2017 has taught me that I need to come out of my comfort zone more, and do things I wouldn’t always expect myself too. Now I’m not talking about going out every night and getting drunk until all hours of the morning. No. I mean starting to doing things that will help me develop as a person, such as… going to talks, learning something new that I don’t ‘have’ to learn i.e. something that’s not my course, meeting new people, making more contacts, helping myself get more confident in who I am, and helping me to grow into the woman I aspire to be.

  • Comparison kills

When we sit and look at other people’s seemingly perfect lives on Instagram and snapchat, all we are really doing is feeding ourselves lies about our own lives. Social media is a breeding ground for comparison, a place for people to post only the highest of highs of their lives, and us humans, we are good at looking at only what is in-front of us, and not remembering that NOBODY has a perfect life. We beat ourselves up because we don’t have that slim thick body, we don’t have the newest red bottoms, we don’t have the nicest cars- when we can’t even drive… and we start looking at our lives and down playing everything.  This is a new form of evil. Stop. Stop comparing your REAL life, to the good parts of life everyone else decides to post on social media.

  1. This world is a messed up place

Anyone could tell you this, I guess this is more of a development rather that something I’ve ‘learnt’.

This world is a messed up place, containing some messed up people… yes.. and that’s all I can say really – Be that light in the darkness.

  • It’s okay to give yourself time to heal, sometimes be selfish.  

SOMETIMES FUCK EVERYONE, (not like sex but like just fuck them) sometimes have some you time. Even if life is going amazingly, take some time for yourself. It is truly beneficial, if you’re anything like me, just take yourself out on a date or something of the sort. Get comfortable with yourself. Self love is the greatest love.


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