17 Lessons I Learned in 2017: On Self

Hello,

I hope you had a merry little Christmas. Happy boxing day! If you are new to my blog then let me reintroduce myself. My name is Natalie and I am a 23 year old girl living in Nairobi ,Kenya.I am ambitious, voluble and sometimes bold. One of the boldest decisions I ever made this year was to pursue my passion. It’s not acting, presenting or anything fancy, just blogging, something I stumbled upon by accident in 2014. Despite being trained as a medical researcher for four years in University, it took me a while to admit that this is what I wanted to do with my life, at least for now and a few years to come. So, welcome to my blog.I am one year and a few months in, I actively started blogging this year but I have been around for a while. I have been through ups and downs, trying to grow my blog and grow as a person. I know the future is bright, I feel it. I know it and I believe it.

The purpose of this series is to enlighten you, hoping you are a dreamer just like myself. Our paths may be different but I believe some lessons apply across all borders.

Those lessons that I discovered in my first year of pursuing my passion are what I want to share with you, hoping that you will get inspired and trust your journey.

On self

1. Be Self-Aware

At the beginning of the year, I had a million things running through my mind. I have a feeling my family thought I was crazy. I had a lot of ‘me time’ and very many moments of reflection. I had to be honest with myself about where I was career-wise, spiritually, financially and in terms of my skill set. It was such a difficult moment. So difficult was it that I cut off communication with most of my friends and family. The only constant thing was this little blog of mine. It was that deep. During that time, I analyzed the people around me, my values, the places I wanted to go and discovered that I needed a change. A change of environment, a change of mind, a change of everything. Just change! So I began going to the gym, blogging regularly because this is my baby, writing more and meeting new people as I looked for ways to monetize my passion. I also did away with some people. For good.

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I know people who cannot be by themselves for more than a day. In those moments that I was a lone-wolf, a lot of things became so clear.My circle got smaller but my vision widened. I believe that all of us should take time by ourselves and be honest about who we are. During this time you will probably discover a lot about your habits that will surprise you, shock you even. You will know you strengths and your weaknesses. Here’s the good thing I discovered about weaknesses, when you know yours, no one can use them against you. Not one bit. Whether they are physical or habitual. Let’s say you have a big nose for instance, if you already know that and accept it, even when people make fun of you (I am assuming this happens in school, where would an adult find time to do this?), you already know it so it is not a big deal anymore. As for habits, you know you can change those. Know thyself. Know who you are, embrace your flaws and acknowledge your strengths.

2. Know your worth

After a gruelling self-analysis, what next? Know what you bring to the table. Now, there’s a thin line between this and having an ego because when you feel good about yourself, you may over-value what you bring to the table. I  experienced this first hand this year. It’s like being that ‘all-talk no show’ yahoo guy. This is where Kendrick Lamar comes in. Sit down. Be humble. It is so hard to be humble after thumping your chest and soothing your ego but as a beginner in anything, you have very little to offer in terms of skills. Being humble allows you to work like the servant. It makes you learn the ins and outs of the business or career that you are in. There will be plenty of time to brag once you have five plus years of experience but within the first few years, a little humility does go a long way.

This does not mean that you let people walk all over you. When you are confident enough that you can handle something, do so by all means. Those times when in doubt, ask or sit back and watch or learn. The skills you learn from observation will come in handy one day.

3. Take care of yourself

A large part of this year was spent studying successful people. Safaricom really took a big chunk of my money this year because I was always on YouTube. A common trait amongst all achievers is a health regimen of some sort. For some, hitting the gym is mandatory, others prefer meditation. Some have a habit of jogging or running in the morning. I tried to emulate this and during those days that I hit the gym every morning, the rest of my day was so productive.

For ladies this may also mean a skincare routine or the occasional spa treatment if you can afford it. Take care of yourself. Your body is something you will have for the rest of your life so love it!

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See you tomorrow for some more lessons.

Love and light.

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