What 2017 Taught Me: Year of Growth
I left blank space and time (three months) on SavvySunflower purposefully, not knowing what was truly occurring. I told a friend I’m learning that I oscillate on a spectrum of introspection and extroversion. I was a major introvert this year. This past year was all about learning how to trust others and trust myself again. There were times where I gossiped (pet peeve of mine), have not given my best effort, and have let fear cause me to stay longer, even when God made me uncomfortable. This caused me to feel guilt, question myself, take everything personally, and assume all things in one breath. However I realize at the root of every problem, most guilt, and frustration I’ve felt is because of self. The same goes for the amazing joy, peace of mind, and confidence I’ve found. I’m in control of what I allow in and what I cast out, or that’s what I’ve learned. Also, I didn’t turn to God as much as I needed to. Yes, I attended bible school often, went to church, cried (had a Tyler Perry movie moment), prayed, but needed more. I read books, which gave me needed wisdom, but didn’t compare to faith or prayer. So, I developed an anxiety around not being real with myself about wanting radical change. I could feel God wanting me to trust him in a new season and I was fearful. I attempted to fit in with others, but it felt like a shoe too small, I wanted to be someone I was not in fear that God demanded more from me.
Luckily, God is loving and kind. And gracious…hella’ gracious.
So instead of condemning myself, I convict myself to do better. Be better. I am willing to get uncomfortable in 2018 and this is my first step before I fully cross into the threshold. Below are my biggest lessons from 2017:
1. Don’t take anything personally (essentially, I was the ultimate people-pleaser and took on unnecessary burdens. Read all about it here) 2. Always be grateful. Don’t allow the dreariness of “carnal minds” and worldly things cloud your vision. Joy is readily available. It is yours. Let your light shine, its greater and brighter than you know! 3. Trust your intuition and persist to love. There are many things that occurred this year that left me fearful of people, anxious about my future, and distrustful of things I’ve prayed about, but my family kept me grounded in our Hebrews 11:1 faith. In my journey to continue to love and trust God’s plan, many situations, people, and feelings were revealed to me that reminded me that I cannot get to where God’s taking me alone. I must always discern by the Holy Spirit and be more intentional with people and energies. 4. Stay humble. I love my hometown of Jackson, MS. I love the nights rapping in the middle of the night with my first best friends, climbing trees with my philosophical and brilliant high school friends, and holding hands with a boy I liked for the first time (at the age of 17)…I know I know, boys had cooties for a long time. It’s where my creator and best sister friend are. They are my heartbeat and rhythm at which I chase my dreams. I love knowing that every step of my life has been nothing short of a miracle. Always return to the places, people, memories that have propelled you to be your best self. 5. Never Give up on Yourself: Man…. trust in your vision. Trust in your vision. Trust in your vision. God does not give us visions, dreams, talents, passions for you not to utilize them in this life. We are all made with purpose and deserve to give our unique talents to give glory, spread love, and inspire others. It may not be in the capacity we hope for, but you never know! When you’re a good steward over what you have, God will give you more. Okaaayyy! Well, I truly hope so because I would love to see all the magic we hold within us burst outward. *fingers crossed 6. Stay Woke! I’m just going to leave that there. Be aware of your surroundings, treat everyone with love regardless, and always pray good not only on your blessings, but also speak life into your trials and tribulations. Everything is temporary and remember, it’s all for your good, but watch out for those who are trying to waste ya time. Reclaim It! 7. Keep going. Every year is more nuanced. Sometimes harder, but that’s because you’re stronger, have more facets, and are wiser. Trust your growth. Know that it’s a sign of you getting closer to your purpose or adding depth to your purpose. All you’re doing is learning how to shine your light in the brightest and darkest of spaces. 8. Have fun. Don’t be too serious. Man, I was brooding for the first half of the year. I overanalyzed people, overanalyzed myself, and was too serious to have fun. I wanted to understand everything and find the answer to all things. I was in my existential Ivory Tower. Yes, I learned so much about myself in relation to the world around. I recognized what needed healing and what needed to be prioritized, but I missed out on events and people I really wanted to reach out to. However; I believe nothing is ever coincidental, so I’ll know better moving forward. Plus, this period helped me realize I am a highly introverted extrovert.
It seems 2017 was a year of simultaneous joy and freedom. Each year, when we are intentional, we learn how to free ourselves from depression, sadness, fear, doubt, insecurities, financial insecurity, whatever it is. We find joy in music, coconut oil infused with sweet orange and rose (ok, I do), we learn how to find sacred ground within our own temples by choosing self-love first before we try to love others. It seems this was a year of growth for many of us, which is exciting with a new year arriving. We are on our way to being more intentional with our time and energy. I pray that you have an amazing New Year and that it is a continuous journey to the healthiest relationship with yourself, so you can have healthier relationships with others.
Aye, what have you learned beautiful? Tell me below.
Peace and a whole lotta' Love,