Health | Wellness | Yoga | Chicago

22 Things I Learned This Year

  1. You cannot plan your life.

This was the year that my whole life plan got turned upside down. I had plans to get married and have children in my mid-twenties. I made the same plan with every man I dated out of fear that it wouldn’t happen for me. That obsessive planning didn’t work out so well for me, in fact, it didn’t work out at all. I really learned that there is no point in planning your future because it is so incredibly unknown. Not only did I learn that lesson which, by the way, felt like a big slap in the face, but I learned how to embrace it.


  1. What it’s like to be alone and only rely on yourself.

For years and years since high school I was always in long term relationships. I relied on other people to make me happy. This year is the first time where I have truly been alone, and getting to know myself so well has been so incredibly rewarding.


  1. What it feels like to have your heart shattered.

I thought I knew what heartbreak felt like, but when my three year relationship ended this year, it was a whole new kind of pain. I lost so much more than just a person. I lost my partner, my best friend, my lover, a group of friends, and what I thought was my life partner. I lost an entire lifestyle, an entire genre of music. I lost inside jokes, I lost a part of my personality. And I had never felt that deep of pain before in my entire life. The kind of pain where you can barely get up or breathe. The pain of such an incredible and profound loss and betrayal.


  1. How to deal with pain in a healthy way.

I could have resorted back to unhealthy behaviors which involved food, razor blades and drugs, but instead, I chose healing. I chose to dive in and I found yoga, meditation, and I found myself. The experience of losing someone so special to me has made me such a stronger human.


  1. It’s not worth keeping people in your life that don’t deserve to be there.

I learned to eliminate negative people from my life because it’s just not worth it. If someone wants to be in your life, they’ll make the effort to be there. Plain and simple. I learned to conserve my energy for myself and for people who deserve it.


  1. Who my real friends are and that I can count on them.

People showed up in ways that I will forever be grateful for. Kevin, Mackenzie, Marley – your support has gotten me through some really painful times and I love you all endlessly. I found deep connections and friendships in whole new ways, and I found out what it means to have soul friends, (YTT peeps, I see you!) I also realized how grateful I am for the support and friendship that I have received from my family.


  1. Yoga is and always will be such a large part of my life.

I learned what it’s like to find a deep love and passion for something that is not another human being. I love yoga so much, and I am so proud of myself for diving into my practice and for becoming a teacher.


  1. Men really ain’t shit.

When I was in a relationship, I never really understood what the big deal was about men being assholes. Now, I understand. Not to say that all men are this way, I have some incredible men in my life, but some men that I have dated and been with this year have been disrespectful and frustrating. Now I get it, ladies. I also learned that the ultimate success in this world is not finding a man and finding love. Men don’t complete you, you do.


  1. I am so much stronger than I ever thought I could be.

I didn’t know what I was going to do when my relationship ended. I couldn’t imagine a world without him. I mustered up so much strength and energy to get through his, and I am damn proud. It’s even cooler knowing that however drained and done I felt, I still had strength within me. Bring it on.


  1. How to believe and trust in something larger.

I wasn’t raised religious and now I have been reintroduced to religion by certain people in my life and that has been very confusing for me. I dove into my spirituality this year and I finally feel like this is energetically where I belong. This has helped me attract my tribe and I am so incredibly grateful.


  1. I am an extroverted introvert.

I always thought I was an extrovert and a very social person. This year has taught me that constantly spending time with others is draining to me and that I love to recharge alone. It has also taught me that I am a little more shy than I thought, which just means that when I do open up, it makes it that much more special.


  1. It’s always best to be honest.

I lied to and deceived a lot of people in past years. I learned the hard way that being honest about everything, especially the hard and fucked up stuff, is always best. I learned how to have the hard conversations, the adult conversations. Being honest will only bring you closer to the people that you care for. Even if I felt vulnerable or silly or stupid, it’s always best to choose honesty over pride.


  1. Everything happens for a reason.

I can almost look at the way that everything unfolded this year from an outside perspective, as if my life was laid out on a map and I am holding it in my two hands. I truly believe now more than ever that everything happens for a reason, even the smallest of things. So many experiences I have encountered this year were out of my control, and they taught me such valuable lessons.


  1. The universe has my back, even when it doesn’t feel like it.

Trusting in the universe has been key. Without it, I feel lost and frustrated with where my life is going. Even when I felt like the worst of things were happening to me, I know and trust that the universe will always have my back.


  1. I want to to travel.

I never really thought about this or ever really had my own hobbies when I was in long term relationships, but something inside me is pulling me out of Chicago. Traveling both out of and within the country is something that I have now made a main priority after I graduate.


  1. I am so proud to be a woman, and I have privilege.

Being a single woman has helped me become a feminist and step into my femininity. I am so incredibly proud to be a woman and I have become extremely passionate about women’s health. I am proud to have a period, to be a fertile woman, and the rest of the beauties that come with being a woman. I also learned because of all the tragedy that happened in our world this year that I have so much privilege, and that alone should make me grateful for every day.


  1. Living with the right roommate is the best.

I never really had good experiences with roommates. It’s not as easy as living with your friends, and I don’t think I would do well with living alone. I am so grateful for my roommate, Hi Kat!! Not only is she an amazing human, but we just work as roommates. Getting my first real apartment with her has been so rewarding.


  1. Work really hard.

I’ve always been a hard worker and enjoyed working, but this year I feel as though a lot of my hard work has really paid off and helped me in furthering my career. Step out of your comfort zone and aim high. If you don’t ask for what you want, you’re never going to get it. Failure and rejection are also inevitably part of that process.


  1. Party a little less hard.

I’ve been a partier since high school and have always loved to drink. I did my fair share of partying and going out this year, which I don’t regret. But I also learned the value of staying in and recharging, and how good that can be for the body, the mind, and the soul.


  1. Stay present.

Worrying about the future and reminiscing about the past isn’t going to get you anywhere except for anxious and depressed. Staying in the present moment and living life moment by moment is so extremely rewarding and beautifully surprising.


  1. My body isn’t going to stay the same; love it always.

My body has gone through a lot of changes this year. I am very grateful for my fitness and wellness journey and that I found passion in the wellness space. I lost and gained weight and I realized that feeling good should always be the priority. I finally feel like I am approaching a healthy relationship with food and exercise and wellness as a whole. The comparison game is not a fun one to play, don’t play it. If you feel good, you glow in a way that someone with a six pack that hates their body never will.


  1. There’s no timeline, and where you are now is exactly where you’re supposed to be.

Enough said. It’s true. Believe it.

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