You only get what you give

Hello 2017 and Happy New Year, dear readers! After taking a bit of a hiatus due to a serious case of writer’s block, I’m ready to get back into the blogging game!

As I sat down to draft this post, my first in a while and my first of 2017, I looked back on the previous year with great fondness, the good and the bad. I like to think of 2016 as the year that made me. I explored parts of East and Southern Africa for the first time in my life, learnt two new languages, met some fascinating individuals, made wonderful friends and came across an unexpected source of inspiration for my blogging and my life in general. After feeling lost, confused and rudderless for a long period of time, I’ve rediscovered my passion and found my calling. Well, I feel like I’m at least a quarter of the way there.  

The pivotal moment of 2016 which renewed my hope for the future was a talk I had with my mum’s youngest sister over the Christmas period. I’d had another panic attack and anyone who’s experienced this knows what a terrifying ordeal it can be. My heart was racing, my chest felt tight, I couldn’t breathe and I was absolutely hysterical. I was on the verge of driving myself to the hospital when aunty took me aside, helped calm me down and took me for a walk. As we walked through the neighborhood, she shared many things with me that made things look a little less bleak. I learnt about both the struggles and triumphs she faced in her early 20s, I got some insightful home truths and received great relationship advice. I can’t say that it was any one particular thing aunty said that got me through my episode, just that our little chat was just the cathartic release I needed. It helped me put things in perspective and suddenly, I had figured out exactly what it is that I want (and need). I finally feel like I’m at peace and significantly, I’ve found the thing I’d lost a while back…hope.  

For many people, myself included, a new year implies new opportunities for a fresh start. So although I’m not the type to make New Year’s resolutions per se, whenever a new year dawns I’m inspired by this idea of hitting refresh, so to speak. While I don’t believe in giving the entire game plan away, I will share a little bit about my goals for 2017. As the ‘happy new year’ messages, tweets and the like began streaming in I came across this awesome Vern McLellan quote above which aptly encapsulates the attitude I’m adopting this year. Spurred on by the difficulties I’ve faced in my personal life and the enduring love and support of friends and family, I’m doubling my efforts as far as my creative endeavours and business ventures are concerned as well as getting more involved in philanthropy and feminist activism. My mother constantly reminds me that negative thoughts stunt one’s progression through life and that if you do things in a spirit of optimism, you’re most likely going to yield positive returns ten-fold. It is with this in mind that I will put in as much effort as possible into quelling bad habits and seizing every opportunity I get to learn and grow.

For the first time in a while, I feel a sense of purpose. I’m fired up and raring to get back on the proverbial horse. I pride myself on being a realist though so I’m allowing myself some margin for error. As always, I remain hopeful that things pan out as I envision. If not, I’ll keep soldiering on until it does.

To my beloved friends, family, readers and followers, I wish you all the best for 2017. May the work you put in this year yield exceptional returns.

Here’s to a purposeful, productive and prosperous year ahead!

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