Wednesday, 28 December 2016

5 Things I Learned This Year

As 2016 winds slowly down (taking far too many lovely folk with it IMHO) I thought I'd look back and analyse the year from a learning perspective. Maybe that's the ex-teacher in me but I needed to do some reflection today and a post here seemed obvious somehow.

1. I learned that I am a writer. This came as a wonderful surprise to me at least. I always wanted to write and have written on and off for most of my life. But nothing made me think that I could call myself a writer. For far too many years I lurked around on the blog and social media, following people whose writing I admired and wishing I could be like them. This year I realised that I was like them! They supported me when I felt unsure and built up my confidence until the day came when I felt able to announce that I was a writer. It still doesn't trip off the tongue but with a deep breath and a following wind I can tell people that I am a writer. And it feels so good.

2. My blog is important to me. For far too many weeks this year I have neglected my blog. I have been too busy; I have lacked inspiration; I have forgotten about it. Excuses, excuses. Bad blogger. But recently I took an online course that helped me to re-focus and to plan for next year. I also realised that when my book is finished I will need to use my blog as a platform to promote it and that means consistency and hard work building my audience. So no more excuses, I will be a better blogger in 2017.

3. I need to grab life by the scruff and dive in. I have seen many friends have wonderful experiences and have loved hearing/reading about them. But I have remained a wallflower, sitting on the side-lines watching all the fun but never joining in. Slowly I realised that I want to join in, I want to look back on interesting and fun times. So I have decided that in 2017 I will try to overcome my reticence and get out there more, including meeting online friends when I get a chance.

4. This one stems from the others a little but I learned that things don't fall into the laps of people. They work hard to make stuff happen. For some weird reason I thought some people were just blessed and things happened to them, almost in a passive way. Like the universe was blessing them. But this year I read a lot about how people made things happen, how they worked to get those opportunities that I so envied. There may be an element of luck or fortune for some people but most folk work bloody hard to create opportunities and if I want things to happen for me, I have to work towards them rather than waiting for them to drop into my lap.

5. I still have ambitions. I never thought of myself as particularly ambitious. I didn't have a career or life plan and drifted from one thing to another, happy to let fate decide where I went and what I did. Yet this year I have realised that there is still much I want to do. I have come scarily close to writing a bucket list, something I always swore I'd never do, but I have thought about the things I still want to do. Top of the list is publishing my book and I want to do this by the end of 2017.  I won't list everything I want to accomplish this year here (there may be a post about it later!) but it has come as a shock to learn that I have more ambitions and more things to look forward to. Blimey, too much positivity here, most unlike me!

So there you have it, 5 things I learned this year. Not a bad haul, if I'm honest. But if 2017 is as positive as I hope to make it I should have much more to reflect on this time next year. Fingers crossed!

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