Happy new year everyone!
I hope everyone’s having a great start to 2020!
I just came back from a five-day trip in Singapore with my family – which was honestly an amazing way to begin the year.
But before diving straight into the new decade, I’d like to continue tradition from last year and reflect on what’s made me who I am up until today.
1. It’s okay to feel not the best all the time
2019 was a year where I found myself having bad days a lot more often. However, with the help of close ones and my counsellor, and time with myself, I’ve realised that it’s completely normal. Reach out. Seek love. Take care of yourself. I know that it’ll take time to come to terms with it in your heart, but once you overcome the first obstacle, the next one will be easier to accept.
2. Trust yourself in trusting others
You don’t need to take on all the weight. Share it with others. Though you may feel like an emotional burden or feel like something’s bad going to happen if you open up, you’ll have less misunderstandings afterwards. Those who are true will stick with you. Plus, you’ll feel a thousand times more lighter!
3. You are your own best friend
Though it might seem silly at first, it’s always so important to learn to love spending time with yourself. Treasure your time alone and observe how you act when there’s no social pressure around you – you’ll discover the most empathetic and mentally strong parts of yourself!
4. Don’t have no expectations; adjust your expectations
It’s impossible to have no expectations. Even when you’re saying to yourself that you won’t, you’ll still have that tiny desire to do your best! Your expectations – whether it be for school, friends, family or yourself – are always made out of well-intended goals. It’s not bad to want to do your best. But maybe you don’t need to get that A*. Maybe you don’t need them to change immediately. Change comes overtime and taking small steps never does you wrong.
5. Take a Break
If you’re a workaholic like me – hell, if you’re feeling drained from writing that blog post of yours – go take a break! Find out the reason why you’re pushing yourself so hard. For me, it’s sometimes because it distracts me from my other worries. But before you do so, go take a breather. Trust me, you’ll become so much more creative and efficient afterwards!
6. Listen to music and sing!
Once I throw my headphones on and eat my Skyflakes, I’m already in an entirely different world. Listening to music, singing along, and finding out what the lyrical meaning behind it has always been so therapeutic and reassuring to me. I even find myself singing to random songs from ABBA when I do my Maths homework, and surprisingly, it helps me concentrate. Beat that, teachers.
7. Read a book
Whether it be just a chapter or page a day, reading has always been my second go-to form of therapy after singing! Going into my second last year of high school with a bad case of senioritis has made me forget how much I love reading. And it might be the same case for you – so go get that dusty old book from yourself, whether that be Captain Underpants or The Great Gatsby – and start reading!
8. News, news, news!
This year I’ve finally realised how important it is to read the news, whether you like it or not. With so much going on in the world right now, it’s more essential than ever to keep up. Though reading the news can be painful – it’s terrible to see how much *crap* there is – but it’s also our duty to stay informed.
9. Thank your body.
Whenever I start picking my body for its flaws, I’ve been trying to remind myself to thank it. Thank you for giving me legs and arms to dance with, a mouth to sing with, and eyes that allows me to see my family and friends every single day.
10. Take risks
I spent most of the past sixteen years of my life overthinking a lot of my decisions which I wish I didn’t. Enjoy being young, face your fears, and use that time to explore what you love! If I never went to that Musical Theatre Summer Camp years ago, I would have never found my passion in theatre. You are stronger than you think.
11. Build trust with your parents
This was a big part of this year. Friends come and go, but family will always be a part of your life in many ways. If they’re overly cautious, show them that you can take care of yourself and handle things independently. Be open with them. Though it may not seem and feel like it on the surface, their actions are out of love for you.
12. Play card games with friends
This one’s quite out of the blue, but having simple fun and doing something laidback like playing cards can be a real stress-reliever. Recommended games are Big Two, Go Fish, and Egyptian Rat Skewers!
13. Don’t be afraid to seek help
Such an important one. Your mental health is important. YOU are important. It may be difficult to grasp when you’re too overwhelmed by emotions – but you are not alone in having consistently bad days. Your problems are valid, and it’s okay to hold hands with another. Seek love and support from the ones you love or a counsellor.
14. End gossiping……
….and start respecting others. Gossiping is usually out of personal insecurities, peer pressure, or the need to impress others. Take a step back and listen to what you are saying. Is this really the person you want to be?
15. There is life after high school
We’ve been in school for, well, as long as we can remember – so it’s natural that you’re sick of it! But learning is a privilege that we take for granted. Take the most out of your education and engage with the people around you as much as you can. Enjoy it while it lasts!
16. Love yourself, baby!
Love yourself, period. I’m still working on it, and if you still are as well, it’s okay. Loving yourself takes time, and it can take your whole life! Learn to appreciate your flaws and quirks, and clap yourself on the back for your strengths. It’s easy to compare with others and want what you don’t have, but there are so many parts of you that people admire that you don’t realise.
Again, happy 2020! I hope that you feel comforted from this post, even if its just by a little.
I’ll leave you all with a quote from RM, from the legendary group BTS:
“Maybe I made a mistake yesterday, but yesterday’s me is still me. Today, I am who I am with all of my faults and my mistakes. Tomorrow, I might be a tiny bit wiser, and that will be me too.”RM, BTS Love Yourself UNICEF Campaign Speech