10 Things I Learned in 2016

  1. Every person is fighting a battle you know nothing about. This is an old phrase that was never more relevant to me than this year. Case in point, I got to know a girl this year who always made me feel like crap. Someone who is prettier, skinnier, smarter and all around just… more. I got to know her, expecting not to like her on the basis that I’m jealous of her. Not only do I really like her as a person, but I realized she has to deal with her own deep insecurities. Turns out, we’re all pretty similar in that regard.
  2. You can’t measure your own success by comparing it to others’. Facebook is a black hole of life updates and passive aggressive-ness. Every single time I went on and saw that someone I knew got a job/got published/was in a relationship/was just looking a lot more successful than me, I would get a little jealous and a little sad. That says a lot about my own insecurities, but it’s also common to compare yourself to the people around you. The problem is, when we see everyone’s highlight reel on social media, we think it reflects negatively on ourselves. Firstly, just be happy for others when they find success. Secondly, work on your own shit instead of complaining that other people are getting somewhere.
  3. It’s okay to be scared. In 2016, I graduated from university and moved to a new city. I was excited, but I tried not to let on too much on how I was also terrified. I was so scared to move and to not be a student for the first time in my life. And you know what? It’s totally okay that I was scared. It’s a pretty natural response, and you shouldn’t ignore it.
  4. There are going to be times when you’re alone, and that’s also okay. I have very few friends in Toronto. I don’t get out very much, and I find myself doing most things alone. And that’s fine. There are going to be times when you aren’t surrounded by your friends. It’s part of moving on and changing.
  5. It’s so important to get to know yourself. To reiterate my last point, I’ve spent a lot of time alone in the latter part of this year. I’ve become comfortable with myself, and have gotten to know the current version of me a bit better. I think doing this is a big step in actually being able to like myself.
  6. That boy is literally not worth it. Whatever it is. If you’re pining, angry, hurt or confused, the dude’s probably not worth the trouble.
  7. You will not land in the perfect job right away. Despite what most movies/Facebook will lead you to believe, it’s pretty hard out there for everyone. It’s hard to find a good apartment. It’s hard to find a decent job. It’s incredibly hard to find a decent job you like. You need to keep putting yourself out there, working crappy jobs and fielding rejections left and right. I’m told one day it’ll all pay off.
  8. You need to take care of your skin. I MEAN IT. Moisturize, drink water, wear sunscreen and be kind to your face, goddammit.
  9. No one cares what you’re doing at the gym. Honestly. No one is looking at you. Don’t feel embarrassed, don’t feel like you’re not allowed to take up space. Just do what you gotta do.
  10. “Adulting” is not a thing. Everyone you know is just trying to figure out how to get by in this life, no matter how old they are or what job they’re in. We’re all just figuring it out.

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