It’s the last day of 2019. Are you excited? I can’t say I’m excited. I think I was more excited for Christmas. Today I woke up very early and with a bit of brain fog. The first question that flooded my mind was this one – What am I going to do to make this day worthwhile? Nothing came to my mind and that was a bit strange. I didn’t feel like doing anything, but at the same time I wanted to do something. That’s when my brain told me to get up, drink a cup of coffee and look at one of my drafts. I had been working on a book about how to find your life purpose and the extent to which pursuing such endeavour is great for everyone’s wellbeing. However, since I started working with the kids at school I never got the chance and headspace to continue that piece. Oddly, I revisited it this morning.
In the book, I offer a three-step approach to work towards your life purpose once you know what it is (and I do offer exercises to help you with that too). The first step is about envisioning the place you want to arrive. The second step deals with empowerment and the importance of equipping yourself with the right set of beliefs and emotions. The third step teaches you that you must act and overcome any barriers or excuses. I think I need to add a fourth step though, which is learn from life’s feedback. Pursuing or fighting for something is not a linear process. We must envision, create a plan, prepare, challenge any resistance, act, but we also need to learn with the consequences of our actions and decisions. Going for it is always better than sitting in the dark corner of our house, but better than that is to learn and be able to adjust our course of action based on the consequences of our decisions. My aim for this post is to share with you 5 lessons I take from 2019 and which I think might be useful for those who stumble upon this entry.
1. You Deserve To Be Loved Wholefully
I thought I had started 2019 in a good note and that I had oddly found the perfect match for me through blogging, but little did I know that I would crash harshly due to my body weight. That’s right. What seemed to be a great beginning of a beautiful fairytale turned out to be a big slap in the face. It also turned out to be a blessing in disguise because if I hadn’t crashed so hard, I wouldn’t have started exploring what codependency is and how love can’t be found in an instant pot of noodles. Love takes time to grow and it needs to be genuine – it can’t be based on projections and illusions.
2. Not All Parents Know Unconditional Love
Now that I wrote this headline, I feel I have been really naive about parenting and both my parents. We are all born with the need of being loved and cared. They are called attachment needs and parents are the ones who should ideally offer and nurture the conditions that fulfill those needs. However, parents can’t give what they don’t have or didn’t receive from their own parents. It’s up to us to do our best in the present moment and learn how to take good care of us and the ones we love.
3. You Are The Only Responsible for Your Own Happiness
My dad does everything he can and cannot do to please my mother and to keep her in a good, happy mood. Once I started to observe my dad’s behaviour more closely, I understood my own behaviour and mistakes. I realised that you are the only one responsible for how good or bad you feel on a daily basis. You are the only one responsible for finding and pursuing your dreams. Plus, it’s not worthwhile to risk and sacrifice your own being for someone who doesn’t give back half of the effort for you and your happiness.
4. It’s Better To Be Alone Than Being Someone You Are Not
In order to make some relationships work, I couldn’t be who I am. I couldn’t be witty, spontaneous, creative. I couldn’t even like rock music or meditate freely. This year became very clear to me that I value my freedom too much, more than I value someone’s company. Why? I don’t like to feel I’m alone when I’m with someone and, at the same, time I don’t like to feel I can’t share my own world, for fear of making the other person go away. Understanding this was a huge step to overcome codependency too.
5. Your Job is Not More Important Than Your Wellbeing
How could I ever think otherwise? In 2019, I made the decision to have a break from my research position. I couldn’t take it anymore. I got severely sick thanks to months and months under stress and away from my home country. I’m still trying to deal with the consequences of burnout like having to take meds for my thyroid forever or deal with memory loss. I wish I had been brave to leave my life in England way earlier. Now I can only mend and keep rebuilding myself from scratch.