Happy New year to all my loyal and new readers. Its the time to take down the Christmas decorations, reflect on the year that has passed and look forward to the new year. Before the start of a new year, its important for us to reflect on our set goals, celebrate achievements, and ponder missed opportunities. Maybe you aspired to change your job, return back to work, acquire new qualifications, move houses, start your own business, lose some weight, give more of your time and resources to a favorite charity or church, successfully complete nursing and weaning your baby or sleep train your baby. So how did you fare?
For me personally, 2017 was an interesting year filled with so many highs and so many lows too. The year felt very busy and fast paced however the photos not only show that it was even busier than I thought but that we created several important memories. In all things I give thanks to God the author and finisher. I attribute all my successes to God and give him alone all the glory for giving me the grace to see me through the year inspite of the obstacles that came along. Also, for being deliberate with my intentions to building and leveraging my small personal and social network. I have become a stronger, courageous, happier and a more God fearing woman than I was in 2016. I have learned and grown so much in most areas.
I allowed myself to scream and cry a few times last year because that’s part of the journey but i never allowed myself to give up
Despite the challenges along the way, I believe 2017 was still a good year not just for me but also for my immediate family.
We celebrated our 5 years wedding anniversary away in Cyprus, we managed to have a few days away without the kids. My younger son turned 1 and is forming his own personality everyday. My older son successfully started big school. We attended his parents evening and was so amazed at how far he had progressed already in his phonics, reading, writing and social skills in a short space of time.
A major highlight for the year was single handedly the huge success of my first Careers workshop on Project Management and Business Analysis in London. I put in 150% effort in organising the workshop and in so little time hence I was so pleased when i went through the feedback forms completed by the participants and they all thought the workshop exceeded their expectations.
I met many travel goals i didn’t even set upfront at the start of the year. I visited 6 countries last year including Cyprus, Spain, France, Cuba, United States and Dubai.
United States 🇺🇸
Dubai UAE 🇦🇪
Its safe to say i settled back relatively well into work from my maternity leave despite challenges mid year with childcare with my amazing nanny of over 3 years moving onto greener pastures, my husband working away from home for almost half of the year, time pressured projects and huge workload. I was so stretched out, burnt out and exhausted for the half of last year juggling a pressurised city job with 2 kids and very little support but nevertheless, i persisted. I managed to turn my lemons to lemonade and even added some rum in few cases. At work, It always felt like we were asked to do much more with so little resources given the state of the global economy. Again, I was quite happy with my feedback and performance review from my stakeholders and boss. My work team volunteered at a local primary school in Surrey quays very close to where I used to live which felt rather fulfilling as well.
Whilst i didn’t set any goals in terms of how much content i wanted to put out last year, i surprised myself and managed to publish 52 high quality blog posts related to lifestyle, fashion and career. My most popular post from the year was “For Moms who need perseverance“. The top lifestyle post from last year was my Paris travel diaries whilst the top fashion related post was the “Summer high low“. Also, my post on “how to cope with the downsides of digitalization” was featured on the Triumphant Tales series. If you haven’t read any of my previous blog posts you should definitely check them out because i put in so much effort in documenting and crafting my thoughts to hopefully inspire someone out there.
Its all about the people
I met, connected and collaborated with a few amazing women through my blog and Notjustamum community. I kicked off the Working mom club, fashionista boss mom, and Boy mom club series on my blog where I got to interview other working and boss moms. Not only is being more open and generous in my personal life slowing become a habit, it has enabled me to better connect with other like-minded people and gradually using it to my advantage. Obviously the fear of failure can sometime be paralyzing and may deter us from trying but if you risk nothing you can be certain of being stuck in the same place, life itself is a gamble. Allowing another a year to pass, peppered with excuses and mediocrity, was not welcomed in 2017 and 2018 will surely be no different.
Growth and Mindset
Feeling great about yourself: mind, body, soul and spirit is the foundation of creativity and success. I tried to put myself in a state of gratitude everyday and thanked God for the smallest things such as fresh air, water and food. I’m slowing figuring out that life is in seasons and no one can have it all at once. I also learned the courage to say NO. NO to anything that does not add any value to me or my family. NO to toxic associations and negativity. NO to anything that would negatively impact on my work-life balance. Striving for greatness and excellence can sometimes be a lonely walk. You must be prepared to walk away from situations and people that can chose tear you down with their words or actions due to their own insecurities and ignorance. Not everyone will be happy with your vision. Seek to surround yourself with those who will motivate, encourage and support your vision and goals.
I don’t know about you but I’m setting the bar a little higher for 2018, I’m determined to learn more, grow more, improve more, support more young and like minded mums in finding more meaning and fulfilment in their lives and motherhood journey through my blog community and I don’t want anyone to be left behind. #nooneleftbehind
I encourage you to reflect on 2017 if you haven’t done so already. Thank you for all your support in 2017, I appreciate you all. Cheers to the best year yet.
What are you most thankful for in 2017?