It's the last week of 2017, and I've been really reflecting on past year. Although globally 2017 was a really tough year, personally it was one of my best years to date. This year was when I took a chance on myself and decided to blog full-time, prioritized travel and went on some amazing trips, and had some incredible experiences with family and friends. That being said, there were also some tough times. Being a first-time business owner has been really challenging, and a lot of learning took place by trial and error - heavy emphasis on the error. I've learned a lot about myself throughout the year, and have taken away a few lessons along. Here's my biggest lessons learned in 2017.
1. Vocalize What You Want
At the beginning of the year, I remember telling anyone who would listen that I wanted to travel more - specifically, that I wanted to travel as a part of the blog. I'm sure I elicited more than a few eye rolls but, low and behold, this is the year that I traveled more than I ever have before. I'm also so grateful to have been on some amazing trips with La Petite Noob, which has quite literally been a dream come true. I really do believe that vocalizing your wants and goals not only forces you to become accountable and work harder towards them, but I'm also a firm believer of putting your intentions out into the universe to get good things back.
I also think that vocalizing what you want can apply to all facets of your life, as I have learned this year. For example, for me as a blogger I have learned to [politely] speak up when expressing what I want while working on contracts. Personally, I am much more vocal with family and friends and it's resulted in stronger, more honest relationships. Being more vocal about what I want, and my thoughts and feelings has definitely yielded amazing things and I'm excited to carry this practice into the new year.
2. Not Everyone Will Like You, And That's Okay
I've been blogging for over 4 years now, and this is the first year that I've experienced an increased amount of negativity, or "hate." Mind you, it's still pretty minimal and absolutely nothing compared to the big-time bloggers and Youtubers out there, but it still stings. While I'm still working learning to let the negativity roll off my shoulders, it's been a good life-lesson in that not everyone in life will like you, and that's okay. There's a quote by Dita Von Teese that I absolutely love, that totally sums up this lesson: “You can be the ripest, juiciest peach in the world, and there's still going to be somebody who hates peaches.” Now, I'm working on living life being my true self and not worrying about pleasing everyone - because even your best self may rub people the wrong way, and that's okay.
I think this lesson is pretty self explanatory, but it's definitely never held more truth than this year. As I get older, it's harder to spend time with others period so I choose to invest in the people who invest in me. The people who fill you up rather than drain you, check in, believe in you - these are people who are worthy of your time.
3. Invest In People Who Invest In You
4. If Not Now Then When?
In the past I've let my own fears and insecurities get in the way of my own dreams. For example, I wanted to start a blog for years before actually getting the courage to do so! This year, I've been working hard to stop over-thinking and over-analyzing my decisions and to just do it. Because of this, I finally started the Youtube channel that I've always wanted to do, which was a huge milestone for me! I'm taking this 'If Not Now Then When' mantra with me into the New Year, and it will help me dive into projects that push me out of my comfort zone.
5. Shop For Separates
This is definitely a more superficial lesson learned for 2017, but boy has it ever transformed my wardrobe: separates are the way to go! Now I'm such a sucker for a pretty dress, and always will be, but 2017 is finally the year that I drilled in my head that one cannot create a functional wardrobe on only dresses - especially when they live in a Toronto condo, with a Toronto condo-sized closet! I've incorporated more blouses, sweaters, skirts and trousers into my wardrobe and the result has me creating more outfits with the clothing I already have, and shopping way less than ever before.
You guys, this year has been incredible and it has largely been due to my decision to take a chance on myself, and turn this blog into my full-time career. It was a gamble - trust me. And I definitely had my fair share of people who doubted the decision. Even though I'm so, so grateful that everything worked out, even if it hadn't I would not have regretted my decision at all. I feel like the best thing to bet on is yourself, and it's better to do what your heart craves then to live with regret.
6. Take A Chance On Yourself
|Coat - c/o LPA via Revolve, Boots - c/o Le Chateau
On a lighter note, I just wanted to share the latest addition to my furry pink jacket collection: this beautiful, super thick and warm jacket by LPA from Revolve. You guys, this jacket is everything. Not only is it super cute with the peachy-pink faux fur, but it's incredibly warm - especially when you factor in the hood. This is my go-to cold weather jacket, and totally brings a smile to everyone's faces when they see me wearing it on the street - a welcome change from your typical black parka. Paired with the best flat over-the-knee boots from Le Chateau, this outfit is a total winter win!
Check out some of my favourite brands carried by Revolve:
Lovers + Friends
What do you guys think? What's your biggest lessons learned from 2017? Anything you plan on carrying into 2018? Let me know!