2018 seems to have been a tough year for a lot of people. I would be one of them. My year was emotionally and mentally challenging with the most anxiety I’ve experienced in a long while, but it was also one of the most exciting times of my life:
I tried a lot of new things and developed who I am as a person
I made big decisions and stepped into new territory
I spent a lot of time diving deep into who I am as a human and enjoying the minutiae of my days
I started over three times in three different ways
It was a year of change, both big and small, growth, and a lot of confusion in between. It taught me a lot about myself and after having taken the last two months in reflection, I’ve come to realize what 2018 really was about for me:
Nope, not just hair growth. Though that happened too…
I tried many new things I was able to expand my comfort zone in new and exciting ways, including:
becoming a bicycle commuter
diving into my past to uncover causes for my anxiety
working on healing my chakras and personal energy systems as they relate to femininity
taking big steps toward a zero-waste routine at home
stopping wearing make up and deodorant, washing my hair only twice per week, and greatly limiting how often I shave my legs & armpits
I noticed I was subconsciously living too much for other people (something many of us are guilty of) and still caring what others thought about my decisions. So, I consciously started to solidify my values and work on the things I needed to in order to start being me.
The process wasn’t always comfortable, which made me realize I was more comfortable living how I thought I should than how I really wanted to. Changing my mindset and overcoming past beliefs was hard, but really worth it.
Promoting healing food, movement, and a stronger connection to the earth were what propelled me in business last year. Within that, I let my creativity run the show a little bit.
I was fortunate enough to have the support I needed to work on my business on a full-time basis, so I did. I took the time to focus on aspects of health and wellness I found interesting while connecting with others in a meaningful way. And I took big strides. The heavy hitters were:
starting my own holistic nutrition practice from scratch
taking a placement at an integrative health clinic to work with clients
receiving my Level 1 certification as an Essentrics instructor
becoming a personal chef
expanding my farming skills volunteering with an urban farming company
I had some great experiences that taught me about priorities and what’s really important to me. There were a lot of great learning opportunities that showed me how I need to show up in business and in life.
It can be hard to start a business without a firm identity of who you are or who you want to serve, and I constantly felt like I was searching to find those things about me and my purpose in business. But what I didn’t realize until I stepped back is that I don’t have to give up on my passion or change who I am in order to develop my career. There are those out there who already resonate with what I provide and those are the people I’ll grow and foster a community around.
BREAKDOWN AND BUILDUP
Last year was a fragile time for me. Most of the time I was on cloud nine enjoying the beauty that is Vancouver and all the little moments in my life that were precious, but I seemed to always have an underlying feeling of uncertainty that made me antsy.
I started the year with a lot of strength and determination coming off the heels of a hard end to 2017. But for some reason, I was constantly turning my life on its head in 2018:
I quit my full-time job to pursue my passion in holistic nutrition and alternative health
I ended a passionate, yet challenging relationship after 20 months
I picked up and moved back to Ontario after 2 years in Vancouver
It all boils down to fear. When I let fear take hold, everything seems much bigger than it is. The only way I know how to make things better is to effect big change and wipe out all I once knew so I can start fresh. Moving back to Ontario was my wake up call that if I’m going to effect big change, I have to do it for the right reasons and not as an escape.
I’m still not sure I made the right decision to come back, but I sure am glad I’m here at this very moment because for so many reasons I need to be. I’ve learned more about myself in terms of my values, beliefs, driving forces, comforts, and desires in the past two months than I did all year.
A year’s a long time. It doesn’t feel right to generalize a feeling about an entire year, so I’ll just say this:
Thank you, 2018. If I didn’t have your downs, I wouldn’t have had your ups. If I didn’t let go, I wouldn’t have grown. If I didn’t open up to you, I never would have allowed my true self to come forward.
You taught me to be aware, be mindful, be brave, and be true to myself. You taught me that my experiences don’t make me who I am, they show me the way to who I could be. You gave me more than I could have asked for and for that I am grateful.