As 2016 comes to an end, we all enter a period of reflection and introspection. The new year is a time of transition, change (both good and bad), and new beginnings. I encourage everyone to treat it as such. Rather than focusing on the past, we need to look toward the future. Now more than ever, we must focus on what inspires us, what brings us joy, and always radiate kindness and love.
Many people are saying that 2016 sucked, and I can’t say I disagree. But every year has its highs and lows (some more lows than highs). I have made the choice to focus on the good with the hope of attracting more of it into my life.
2016 brought a lot of positive change to my life. For one, Kaia entered my life. If you don’t know who Kaia is, she’s the furry little monster that looks so obnoxiously cute in pictures (but is secretly plotting world domination). She’s a handful and she knows how to get what she wants with those damn puppy eyes. She’s growing up so fast (haha I feel like a mom) and every time I come home from school I feel like she’s gotten so big. She’s already turning one in January!
In April, I turned 21. Yay! I feel old.
Over the summer, I took classes and had the opportunity to work as a photographer and videographer for a girls’ summer camp. The summer camp was a STEM enrichment program for middle school girls that stimulated interest in science, technology, engineering, and math by allowing the girls to participate in fun fashion-related activities. I don’t typically like working with kids (they scare me), but I genuinely enjoyed working with these girls. It opened my eyes to the importance of STEM programs in a young girls’ development and I felt like I truly made a difference in the lives of some of the campers. We need girls to dream big and pursue their interests in the STEM fields.
I was lucky enough to get an internship (literally a week after the camp ended) at a major Denver magazine. The internship allowed me to work with the magazine’s design and production team to create advertisements and promotional material. It was my first time designing on a professional level and I really enjoyed it. I think, more than anything, it gave me more confidence in my abilities. I am currently studying apparel and merchandising, so working as a graphic designer may not seem like the obvious choice. Going into the internship, I honestly felt unqualified. I knew I had the ability to design at the level the magazine required, but I felt like an outsider because I didn’t have a formal education in the work I was doing. As the internship progressed, and people liked my work, I started to gain confidence. The experience made me realized that self-confidence plays a significant role in the professional world. It’s the first time that I felt like the saying “fake it ’till you make it” applied to my life. If you present yourself with confidence and believe in your ability, there’s very little you can’t accomplish.
I am grateful for the all of the new friends I have made this year and all of the old friends I have gotten closer to. It is so important to surround yourself with people who make a positive impact on your life. One of the quotes that I try to live by is, “Don’t chase people. Be an example. Attract them. Work hard and be yourself. The people who belong in your life will come find you and stay. Just do your thing.” I feel like 2016 is the first year that I have been completely myself. I no longer have time to chase people or care if people don’t like me. Not everyone will like me or want to be friends with me, and that’s okay. I have been working hard to achieve my personal goals and become a person that I can be proud of. In the process, I have found some lifelong friends that support my dreams and respect me for who I am and who I’m not.
2016 has been a year of change. It has kept me busy and I am grateful for the opportunities it has held for me. I hope to continue to attract positivity in my life in the new year.
I say this every year, but I really want to post more frequently in 2017. I’m giving the blog a facelift and I’m going to start introducing some new features. I’m going to incorporate more lifestyle and sustainability components as well as introduce video content to the blog. I have some exciting things planned for the blog and I’m hoping you’ll like them!
2016 was unexpectedly busy for me and it didn’t leave much time for me to work on the blog. I felt pretty overwhelmed all year. I was going to school, working, interning, and playing collegiate soccer. Not to mention, my internship was an hour and a half drive from school. My busy schedule didn’t leave much time for anything, let alone blogging. I felt like my priorities completely shifted. I wasn’t focused on living a healthy lifestyle because I was constantly working. I became so used to being busy that I started feeling guilty if I wasn’t doing something. In 2017, I want to stay busy, but I also want to maintain a healthy balance. I think, as a society, we need to stop romanticizing the idea of being busy. We have this perception that if you’re not busy, you’re not successful. But it’s okay to not be busy all the time. Balance is key.
“Work until your idols become your rivals.” I think some profound philosopher said that once… or maybe it was Drake 😛 In 2017, I want to focus on doing what I do best and stop comparing my work to others. There will always be someone who is better at what you do and someone you look up to. Rather than letting that discourage you, allow it to serve as inspiration and motivation to improve your work. Their work might be great, but they can’t do what you do. Everyone has a unique perspective to contribute. I want to make sure I place value in mine.
I graduate this spring (what!?!), so 2017 will be a huge year for me. I will continue to work toward my career goals as I look for jobs and prepare to move across the country. I’ve made a list of personal and career goals that I want to achieve in 2017 and I encourage you to do the same.
Let’s make this year a great one! I’m excited to see what the future holds. Happy New Year!