2018 is coming to an end, and with it, comes the usual resolutions for the new year. You know, this kind of resolution you will keep for a month (or a week) and then forget because it was just so unrealistic. So instead of setting my resolutions for 2019, I decided to do this little exercise I found on Melissa Ambrosini website, and I loved it. It made me really think about this past year and put things in perspective and set new goals for the year to come.
I hope you’ll like this article, slightly different from what I usually post, way more personal, and that you will also make your own 2018 wrap up and 2019 set up !
During the more challenging times in 2018, how did you show up? Are you happy with how you showed up or could you have shown up differently?
I think I showed up as very unconfident, needy, demanding and emotional sometimes. I needed to be loved and I wanted it all, right now, and I ended up ruining a beautiful relationship. Instead, I could have been more patient and chill, take it easy, take things as they come, ask less and worry less.
But in other times, I think I have been quite brave and resilient and hard-working. I came back to France after a 7 months trip and I wasn’t very happy about it, but I had this goal, moving to the Netherlands and I stick to it. I learned Dutch, saved money, searched for a job and an apartment for hours, stayed strong when I lose my first job and when I was completely broke, and now I finally have a stable job, that pays good money and I am slowly getting my shit together.
Did you step outside your comfort zone? If yes, when? How did that make you feel? What did you learn during the process?
2018 was all about getting out of my comfort zone. I moved in another country, where I don’t know the language and where I didn’t know almost anyone. In 4 months in the Netherlands, I had 3 different jobs, I had to make friends from scratch, learn new codes, a new culture.
Going back to a sedentary life was also kinda challenging for me, as I finally found a balance in my nomadic life, and I was so happy that way.
All of this sometimes made me feel very insecure and vulnerable, even depressed. But it also gave me more strength and flexibility. I learned how to put things into perspective and to be more patient. Things may not seem great at the beginning, but I know why I am working for, I know I am planting seeds for the future.
Did you love with your whole heart? If not, how come?
Oh yes, I did! And even if I suffered like hell because of it, I don’t regret anything. It made me realize that before loving anyone, I need to love myself first. Because if you don’t, you end up seeking for someone’s love and attention, and suffocate people. I also understood that, with love, if things are not going well, it’s because it’s not the right person for you, so everything is as it should be.
But besides relationships, I loved life with all my heart. 2017 and 2018 were just a dream. I learned so much about myself, discovered our beautiful planet, and I am so grateful for that.
Were you fully present? If not, why not? Where could you have been more present?
I was not fully present this year. I was always looking for something better to come or worrying for the future. I was scared of going back to France, when I was in Paris, I was looking forward being in the Netherlands, in the Netherlands I am looking forward to travel again, etc.
I should have enjoyed more the little things and each moment. As someone-I-know’s mom always says: if it did not happen yet, no need to worry about it, and if it happens, you’ll have way enough time to worry about it.
Were you kind? Could you have been kinder?
I have been kind. But I could have been kinder. Especially with myself. Loving my body more sometimes and treat it as the temple it is. Accept my past, my feelings, my emotions, my mistakes. All of them are valid.
How much did you love? Could you have loved more?
As said in one of the previous questions, I loved a lot. But I could have loved better. Better in a way that it’s not affecting someone else’s well-being. And also my own well-being in the end. Better in a way that I don’t have to lose myself by loving someone else.
How did you serve others? Could you have served more?
I think I served other by being a good friend, and daughter and sister, by being there for the one I love. I also served people by giving them advices, answer their questions about traveling in general or the places I visited in particular.
But I think I could have done way better, by calling my family more often for example. I also could have done more concrete work like volunteer work.
Where did any old limiting Mean Girl fears or beliefs pop up?
My Mean girl was quite often with me this year, telling me that my feelings were not valid, that I was lazy because I was not doing enough: cooking enough, working out enough, writing enough on my blog, doing yoga. My Mean girl was also telling me that I was not good enough, or smart enough, or beautiful enough, or funny enough, to be loved in return.
What do you want to let go of? For example, an old limiting belief, a job, a relationship, a situation, a pattern, a painful memory, resentment, hurt or a behavior you are still holding onto?
There are a lot of things I need to let go, I’ve tried for many years, but did not succeed for some of them yet. So, I hope 2019 will be the good year.
I want to stop thinking I am not enough, that I am not talented, smart or good enough to do what I want and achieve my goals.
I want to stop seeking for love from other people. I want to love myself first. I want to really integrate the fact that all the answers are within me. That I don’t need to be fixed. Because I am not broken. I want to stop being that little girl that feels rejected, abandoned and not lovable. Because it’s not true. I know there is people out there that love me. I know that I am just 23 and if I didn’t find the right person yet, it doesn’t mean that I am not lovable. I know that I am not this 5-years-old child, and that all the experiences I lived since then made me who I am today, but they don’t define me. Past is not fate. Everything is a matter of perspective.
I also want to learn to be more patient, and not seek for immediate satisfaction. I need to learn that things take time and be less impulsive sometimes.
What would you like to stop doing from 2018?
I want to stop eating crap. I have been quite good at it when I was traveling, but for a few months, since I’ve been quite insecure, I started emotional eating again. And that’s not good, neither for my body, nor for my mind. I also would like to completely cut dairies (except maybe when I am out), so stop eating cheese. Again, it’s not good for my body, for the environment, and it goes against my commitment to not hurt animals and being vegetarian (yes, milk kills too).
What did you birth / create in 2018?
In 2018, I created the English version of my blog and a lot of new articles! I also created this brand new life I have now, in another country, with other people.
What were the 3 best things that happened in 2018?
- Moving to Rotterdam
- Finally moving my ass off to make my dreams come true: take yoga classes, read tons of books, listen to podcasts, etc.
What have you achieved or what are you most proud of?
I am proud of where I am now, 2 years after deciding to quit everything. I finally took control on my life, deciding to move where I want and pursue my dreams. It’s not always easy, but I think I am on the right way.
I am pride I am finally doing what I need to do to get where I want to go, to overcome little by little my fear of failure and my impostor syndrome.
And of course, I am pride of this 7-months trip I did and moving to another country.
What are 3 things you have learned?
- I learned to let go of things/people that don’t serve me or don’t make me my highest self anymore.
- I learned to take things the way they come and see all of them as an opportunity to learn and grow.
- I learned some Dutch and now,ik spreek een bijtje Nederland* (I speak a bit of Dutch).
What have been your top 3 biggest realizations / lessons?
- Everything is a matter of perspective. Sometimes, I could have cried and spend days in bed, but I decided to take it for what it is, life, and I moved on, and I used this event, or this time left by someone to do meaningful and useful things.
- I can grow trough ease. Growth doesn’t have to be painful.
- Rain-pants are a must-have in the Netherlands.
How have you grown?
Moving to another country made me grow. It was kinda my first real steps in adult life. I had to find a new job in a country I don’t know and that I don’t speak the language, find an apartment (bye bye student rooms), deal with big financial issues for the first time of my life, lose a job for the first time of my life, do countless administrative tasks (I hate paperwork), etc. But don’t get me wrong, adulthood doesn’t suck that much. I also had the pleasure to get a good job that pays good money, make friends outside from work, and enjoy this new freedom.
But I feel like what made me grow the most were painful experiences. Indeed, I lose my job, I was completely broke and it made me wonder “What I’m gonna do with my life? What do I WANT to do with my life?” And this I how I realized that 2 of the things that bring me joy are yoga and wellness in general, and this why one of my plans in 2019 is to study Ayurveda for real, to make a job out of it.
Also, letting go a person I loved made me realized how needy and even toxic I could be to other people. For someone that had to deal with toxic and abusive relationships in the past, it was hard to admit. Even if this was just the manifestation of my own neurosis, it’s not an excuse. But it allowed me to reflect on my own behavior, why I acted like that, what I can do for it to not happen again, and more importantly, it made me realize that I have to love myself first. And for that, I needed to spend a lot of time alone and learn how to enjoy my own company, make peace with my past and who I am. And it might not be easy at the beginning, but it was worth it, even if I am still working on it. So sometimes, pushing you away is the best gift someone can offer you.
Describe 2018 in 3 words
Change, growth, introspection.
What are you most grateful for from this year?
I am grateful for being a young woman that live her life fully, that gives herself the tools to achieve her goals and dreams. I am grateful to have the freedom to choose the life I want, thing that all the women in the world can’t do today. And I am grateful to be the kind of person that has the courage to step out and live this life, without limiting herself to what society considers as “a good life”.
What are 5 words to best describe how you want to feel in 2019?
What are 1-3 health goals you would like to achieve?
- Cut dairy from my diet
- Limit the intake of sugar and processed food
- Work out/take yoga classes at least 3 times a week
What are 1-3 career goals you would like to achieve?
- Start studying Ayurveda
- Make this blog grow (redesign it, propose better content, have more audience)
What are 1-3 financial goals you would like to achieve?
I would like to save at least 500€ per month, to be able to travel for several months in 2020 and also pay my tuition fees.
What are 1-3 self-love goals you would like to achieve?
- Practice yoga every day, even for 5 minutes, and not pressure myself to do complex asanas and blame myself if I am not enough strong or flexible yet to execute them well. I want to be more indulgence with myself.
- Listen more to my body. Eat when I am hungry, not because it’s lunch time. Eat the food my body reclaims. Sleep when I need to, even if it’s early or if I have plans. Health first.
- Forgive myself for not being perfect all the time.
What are 1-3 relationship goals you would like to achieve?
- Friendship wise, I want to develop my Bliss Tribe (for those who don’t know what a Bliss Tribe is, read this) and stick to our bi-monthly call.
- Develop more meaningful relationships with people and connect on a deeper level. Enough small talk.
- Stop being scared of loving and being loved. Love is not supposed to hurt. It’s not because I’ve been hurt once or twice that it will happen forever
Do you want to travel this year? If yes, where do you want to go? Be as specific as possible.
I want to go to Romania for a week in March to see my friend Elena. I also would like to go to Belgium (Brussel and Bruges in particular), and to Germany (Hamburg and Berlin maybe) for a week-end.
What are 2-3 hobbies that you would like to explore and make more time for in 2019?
I would like to bring my yoga practice and meditation to the next level. Really practice seriously every week so I can really better progress. I also would like to spend more time reading. As a child, I was a big reader, but I started reading less at college. But now that I have been offered sooooo much books for Christmas, I really want to go back at it. These are all non-fiction books, but if you have good novels to recommend me, I would be happy to have a look!
What will you commit to not doing in 2019?
Emotional eating. This as been one of my major problem a few years ago and I thought I was down with it, but the last few weeks, as I was very stressed and tired, I started to eat a lot of chocolate again and the result are: weight gained, poor self-esteem and terrible skin.
I also want to stop buying fast fashion. It’s so damaging for the environment. Did you know that the textile industry was one of the most polluting of the world? This is cheap but after cleaning it twice, the color fades and it’s shapeless. I want to buy less but better. And it will be the opportunity to discover fair-fashion brands and go to thrift shops!
What will you make more time for?
I want to make more time for myself and rest. This last couple of months, I have been running everywhere, doing one million things (yoga, meditation, blogging, reading, listening to podcasts, cooking, working, trying to maintain a social life, etc.), and I just ended up burning myself. I need to do less, but better, and take some time off, just for myself.
I also want to make more time for people in my life. I want to meet new people, make new friends, and spend time with the one I already have.
How do you want to do things differently in 2019?
I want to do things in a more conscious way, being more present. More slowly too. I also want to take time to reflect before acting/speaking: is what I wanna say nice/useful/meaningful? If not, try to reformulate or just be quiet.
Create your 2019 Self Love Menu. What are 10 things you can add to your self-love menu to fill yourself up daily? Stick this on your fridge and do one thing from your Self Love Menu each day.
- Sipping herbal tea in the morning or before going to bed, in silence and with my eyes closed
- Cook a delicious and beautiful meal
- Dry-brush and body-oil
- Yoga and meditation
- Read a good book
- Being in nature
- Laugh hysterically
- Random acts of kindness
What does your ideal morning routine look like? Be as specific as possible.
- Waking up rested around 7 or 8 am and stretch
- Scrap my tong
- Brush my teeth
- Take a good shower
- Dry-brush and body-oil
- Wear nice and comfy cloths
- Drink warm water with lemon
- Go for gentle exercise (a walk, yoga), or just meditation
- Eat a good breakfast
- Read a good book
What does your ideal day look like?
- Explore (discover a new neighborhood, go to the museum)
- Have a good lunch
- Take a quick nap
- Work on my blog
- Meet up with some friends
- Have a light diner
What does your self-loving nighttime ritual look like?
- Take a shower, brush my teeth
- Read a good book with a warm cup pf tea
- Do some quick yoga in bed, meditation or stretching
- Go to bed early
What is one word you want to describe 2019?
So here are 3 affirmations I want to keep in mind during this year 2019:
- I create my thoughts. My thoughts create my reality. I create my reality.
- We accept the love we think we deserve.
- Everything is a matter of perspective.
And you, how was 2018 for you? How do you want 2019 to be?
In this article, I talk a lot about personal stuff and about the things I love, beside travelling, and in the future, I would like to speak more about this kind of topics: yoga, wellness, personal development, even cooking! Don’t worry, I will still talk about travelling and how the life of an expat in the Netherlands looks like, but I also want to diversify the content of this blog. I hope you’ll stay with me in this journey! If there is a special subject, or place you want me to talk, please feel free to ask me in the comments, DM me on Instagram or directly through the contact form on the blog!
I wish you all a Happy New Year !
NB : the cover picture is not from me