As 2015 is almost over, I thought I would have a look back over some of the things that I’ve done.
I recommend that you do this actually, because when I first sat down with a pen and paper (I do my best thinking unplugged) to write a list I didn’t think I had done that much. But I discovered that not only had I done more things than I thought I had, a lot of them are really awesome things that I’m proud of.
I did a fair few things that I had been wanting to do for ages but hadn’t.
I wrote an article for xojane.com. Actually, this was supposed to be the start of me pitching all sorts of articles and getting paid to write on the side. As it turned out, I lost all interest in the writing for money thing after this came out. This particular story has been inside my head for a while, and it was good to get it out in a very public way. But sorting out all the paperwork and invoicing was a pain for what was not actually that much money once my bank took a hefty foreign deposit fee. If an idea comes to me that I think would be suitable for another site, I’ll pitch it. But I won’t be forcing myself to come up with ideas.
I got a gecko tattoo. A gecko was actually the first idea that I had for a tattoo, due to the amount of times I shared a bedroom or a shower with them while I was in India. At first, I was really creeped out by their presence and convinced that one would scuttle over my face as soon as I closed my eyes. But by the end of six months I was completely nonplussed by their presence. For me, geckos represent how much more confident going solo to India made me.
I left Facebook. Turns out this was bad for my social life, but good for my mental health. I am still pretty happy with this trade off.
Despite being aware of them for ages, in July I finally started going to Oxford Drunken Knitwits. This one has been good for my social life and knitting skills, but bad for my liver. Again, still a reasonable trade off.
I had 3 months of coaching with Sas Petherick, who I had been internet stalking for a while. (Seriously guys, you should read her blog.) I’ve been meaning to write a post about everything I learnt about myself, but I’m still having daily revelations and the changes have been too big to condense to a single post. Turns out it was a bloody good idea.
I had my hair cut short. I finally stopped thinking about what hair cut I thought I should have, would make my face look thinner, or be most attractive, and just got the hair cut I actually wanted. Now I’m happier with how I look than I have been for years (maybe ever), so that’s pretty awesome.
I got really into drawing my own cards. The dinosaurs became a bit of a theme.
I cleared my room of unwanted gifts and feel a lot better for it.
I started a new job. I made a conscious decision to move out of large organisations and work for a small, community based charity whose values I can totally get behind. Luckily, having found out about My Life My Choice, they liked me too and I started as Media and Communications Worker in April.
I did some things that I had not even imagined I would do.
We put pause on planning our big wedding and eloped to the seaside.
One of my tweets went viral. That was a weird day.
Cable knit. Seems trivial, but had always assumed things that looked like this were what other, more naturally talented, knitters made. If somebody hadn’t bought me the pattern I would never have thought of trying it.
I was interviewed for a podcast. More on this here.
And then a few more notable things…
I went skiing for the first time in eleven years and remembered how much I loved it. Honestly, if something brings you this much joy, don’t tell yourself you can’t afford to do it for over a decade.
I went back to Alive in Berlin. I had a completely different experience to last year, which was mostly about being exposed to new ideas and getting inspired. This year, I enjoyed reconnecting with people I met in 2014. I was completely blown over by a) how many people remembered me and b) how many of those seemed genuinely pleased to see me and greeted me with hugs. The conference was in the same building as last year and I also stayed in the same youth hostel. There was something about repeating the same experience one year n to make me realise how much I have changed. I’m not trying to run away from my life any more. In fact, dare I say it, I might actually be happy.
I read a lot more fiction. I had to work on this. I LOVE reading stories, but feel a bit guilty for indulging this. Coaching moved me away from doing what I think I should do, and I’ve recently I’ve been filling my time with things I actually enjoy. I’m not sure why this was such a novel (haha) idea.