2018 In Review
Time flies. I swear I was just sitting in Kindred with Justin and friends on the eve of 2018…and now, we’re just hours away from 2019. When did that happen?!
As the year comes to a close, I’ve been especially reflective - taking time to note how this year went and what I learned - so that I can bring these lessons into 2019.
So, here’s how 2018 went….
2018 was a pretty swell year in my life:
I started a new job in March.
I graduated as a certified yoga teacher.
My best friend Emily visited San Diego for the first time in October.
I spent so many weekends traversing new trails or dipping into the Pacific Ocean.
I saved money consistently.
A few of my best friends got engaged.
I read so many good books (favorites included: Room, Big Magic, Idaho, Tell the Wolves I’m Home, Everything’s Trash But It’s Okay, Rape: A Love Story, The Art of Racing in the Rain and 10% Happier).
I saw hundreds of sunrises and sunsets - often with people I love.
I volunteered at the San Diego Zoo.
I met Justin’s family.
While these are some of the big highlights that stand out, this year was truly comprised of so many wonderful small moments that truly made it swell: nights spent in with Walt the cat cuddling on my lap while Justin and I rewatched Breaking Bad, hiking with both new and old friends, Tuesday morning Dark Horse Coffee Roaster runs, building Ikea furniture sets, discovering a new recipe - and then perfecting it, laughing at comedy podcasts while driving, learning how to grill and so on.
Honestly, 2018 left me tired (read the next section!), but it left me with a big, fat smile on my face. It was a pretty darn good year - probably one of my best yet.
While I’d much rather focus on the highs right now, 2018 definitely presented its fair share of challenges:
I balanced a full-time ( + often more) workload with a busy yoga teacher training program.
I missed a trip to Mexico with one of the worst bouts of the flu I’ve experienced to date.
In November, I found out I was laid off from said new job.
During the summer, I battled with a resurgence of depression.
I lost one of my best friends.
I dealt with some extended family illness and drama.
I had severe anxiety about the state of the world and American politics.
For months, I dealt with the worst acne I’d ever experienced in life. (Why now as an adult?!)
Between the loss of a friend, struggling with clinical depression, being laid off and being inundated with the perpetually negative news cycle (a la Trump & co., in particular), 2018 left me exhausted and yearning for a new start.
But, on a different note, I’m sure there were dozens of small challenges scattered throughout the year, but this is probably the first year where' I’m learning to pay them no mind. Life happens…and I’m learning that it’s about how you react vs. the situation.
What I Learned
2018 was a big year of growth and yearning. Beyond the high, great moments, I’m most thankful for lessons learned that I can take into the coming year:
As I mentioned: reaction is key. Life will happen all around you, but you can be in control of your reaction. This lesson is definitely a daily work in progress…but that’s all I can ask for!
Overcommitment and “doing it all” is 100% not worth it.
Body confidence is a daily journey.
The ocean is my cure and my place of solace.
While most people (admittedly, myself included at times) complain about New Year’s “resolutions,” I do like the practice of setting goals and intentions for the year.
My goals for 2018 were as follows:
Complete a 200-hour yoga teacher training program
Handwrite a note once a week to individual(s) who impact my life that specific week.
Volunteer at least 100 hours at the San Diego Zoo.
Visit at least 2 new cities.
Blog at least twice a week.
Read at least 12 books.
Complete the 52 Hike Challenge.
Put my phone away one hour before I hit the hay.
I’ll start off by saying: I didn’t accomplish half of these. While earlier this month, I got down on myself about my seemingly abysmal progress on these goals, I’m learning to recognize what I did do. I completed my 200-hour yoga teacher training, I read 18 books…and I have one hike left in 52 Hike Challenge that I plan to embark on tomorrow, New Year’s Eve. While it may not be everything on the list…life has a funny way of getting in the way of your plans, and I am happy with what I was able to accomplish because ultimately it’s so much more than this list…and these goals won’t just disappear.
Last New Year’s Eve, I decided to pick out a word to focus on in 2018. I was drawn to the word joy and kept this focus word as an intention during the year. While I can’t say I practiced joy every moment, I did realize that I found considerably more joy in the small things than ever before. Or…maybe I’m just getting older and life is getting simpler? Regardless, joy seemed to guide my year - consciously and subconsciously.