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Thursday, January 5, 2017

2016 Recap; Hello 2017!

Another year gone, seemingly in the blink of an eye (why o why? Take it slow, life!), and all I can think is, "THIS was the year of absolute changes and it's incredible how I've come to accept and embrace it." You know how I would always state that I don't really like changes, but then comes a time in life when you are so severely tested that it finally dawns upon your scorched soul that changes can be for the better and it'd be wise to enjoy life the way it is. No whining.

I'll be frank. I did whine. A lot. 2016 brought with it tons of mind-boggling situations, major decision-making, super annoyances BUT with the grace of the almighty (and my restored faith in Him) the year ended quite pleasantly. Here's a summary of 2016 (including resonant answers to deep questions):

2016 brought me to the edge. It was scary but the view was exciting.

January 2016--March 2016

1. Reminiscing the past by re-reading Harry Potter! I ended up reading just the first four books, after which life happened I realised we need to work to survive.
Lesson learned: Work is important, but not important enough to discontinue reading Harry Potter! Nothing ever is.

2. Feeling inhibitions that my three-month old workplace isn't ideal. The feeling quickly escalated and I began a job search in the same industry (aka publishing aka the home for my beloved books). Lesson learned: Listen to your heart and begin looking for a job right when you feel it! The process takes ages and you might end up losing your sanity if you aren't quick enough. I saved mine, thank goodness!

Is this what I came for? Err...
3. Travelling to Jaipur with a couple of girl-friends just to chill and relax. Experienced life in Zostel, roamed around the city markets, visited historical forts and acted like typical tourists. #itwasfun
Lesson learned: Trips with friends always equal jannat.

4. Securing a freelance work op with a biggie publisher. Hi-5! The best two months of my work life (after which... erm... please don't ask. Kbye.)
Lesson learned: Don't judge yourself based on others' opinion of you. Also, good times don't last. But again, it's all for the best!

*sigh* Good days!

April 2016--June 2016

1. The family trip to Australiaaa. Those days I felt like I knew what it means to be truly happy--it was such an amazing trip! You can read about it in the previous post.
Lesson learned: The frog needs to get out of the well more often.

Because the world can be fun!
2. Hard luck and illness can strike anyone, even a 5yo barely two months into school. My beautiful nephew was diagnosed with cancer. We did some fundraising to help the family cover treatment costs. It was an overwhelming experience for us all as we saw people from all walks of life come forward to help.
Lesson learned: You can never know beforehand who's going to be your support in times of trouble. Be grateful for everything.
Update: His initial phase of chemo is almost at a close, and he seems to be doing well. Much love and appreciation for everyone's help. :')
You can follow his story on this Facebook page.

July 2016--September 2016

1. Desperation at the job front, looking at other industries and failing classically. Realising that successes are hard to get, and keeping one's will power in check requires every ounce of effort one can muster.
Lesson learned: Keep going. Be visibly appreciative of family and friends who stick with you even when they suffer the effects of your mood swings.

October 2016--December 2016

1. Incessant prayers worked their magic and I got just the very thing I wanted. It also feels quite exciting, so yay!
Lesson learned: Feel free to weave your dreams, but always go with the flow. Every experience gives lasting value and shapes your mind, psychology and behaviour. Be open and accepting, and before you know, you'll get what's best for you. And you'll know it when you see it!

If only I looked just as cute!
I recently came across these lines by the philosopher Socrates, which resonated with me instantly:  “If you don't get what you want, you suffer; if you get what you don't want, you suffer; even when you get exactly what you want, you still suffer because you can't hold on to it forever. Your mind is your predicament. It wants to be free of change. Free of pain, free of the obligations of life and death. But change is law and no amount of pretending will alter that reality.”

2. Friendships have incredible power. Those who believe in you when you yourself don't, those who "make the effort" to help ease things for you, they're the ones to hug tight!
Lesson learned: More often than not, you wouldn't see it when you're low, because it's extremely trying to think of anything but your helplessness, but every once in a while when the depressing feeling passes, you'll see the depths of your friendships (or the extreme shallowness of some, for that matter). When you see it, you'll work at becoming a better friend yourself.

~ ~ ~

Matters of interest

1. I'm a lot more confident now, thanks to the tough situations I faced this year. I also met new people and it was fantastic!

2. I realised that hard work pays. You just have to stay cool, calm and confident, and believe you're going to win. That way, even if you lose, you still feel like a winner--rejuvenated and energized to start all over again or to look for alternatives, both of which are equally important.

3. Life is finite and too short to
- worry over materialistic gains
- overthink about what someone said to you out of ignorance or spite
- not enjoy each day
- spend time eating junk food
- think about people

Always!

4. Sometimes you are just not the same you as before. It can be a painful transition, knowing you don't feel like doing the things you liked doing, but at some point of time comes the ultimate relief--an inner acceptance of things that doesn't burden you with guilt or regret. It's pure evolution when you look at life from the other end of the kaleidoscope and find the view just as mesmerizing.

That's a lot about 2016 (not by my standards, and you know it. But I gotta think about you too), so let's move on to the much-sought-after things in 2017! Woohoo!

#1: The new job! I'm nervous and excited and it feels like I'm being given a second life. Thank you, dear God. I'll make you proud.

#2: My girl-best friend's wedding!!!! OMG I never before knew weddings could be so exciting! #funahead

Gonna be like this :P

#3: Becoming a kickass book blogger (I'll be here too, my pet). I will admit--I sucked at blogging in 2016 and I'm not even using the but-my-brain-was-dead-with-other-things excuse. I didn't even read 50 books (I think. I need to check Goodreads right away! Ohman. I read 39 books, the lowest in five years! I know, I know. I had decided not to go with numbers but you can't help taking a peek every month or so, especially when you have been overachieving your goals for years. I'm gonna make up for it this year. I mean, I MISS BOOKS! It's weird--the one whole year I worked in publishing, I read the least number of books. #thissucks) 

Anyway, this means I'm gonna be on the lookout for the latest books AND find my way to them AND devour them like a hungry bookworm AND post amazing reviews on my blog here (Subscribe if you haven't. I promise you won't regret it.) I might get into bookstagram too. You never know. (But you'll know if I do, because if you read this, you're bound to follow my bookstagram (which is instagramming about books)). Naturally I'll be into photography as well.

#4: Read more (as mentioned in #3) and read DIVERSE. Ugh, just read!!! I don't even like myself when I haven't read enough.

#5: Learn other language(s): Includes Punjabi (which I should have by this time), Spanish (which I should have remembered, having learned it for two years), French (just 'cuz I wanna. Also 'cuz I make insane goals).

#6: Learn about make-up and hairstyling: I'll do this at a very basic level, but I'll do it! Why? (And YOU, the friend, stop looking at me like that.) Because I'm a girl and a grown-up and I still don't know about these two essential things. I mean, why look average when you can look excellent?

#7: Don't waste time thinking about or because of people. Just do your own thing because your time is the most important thing--why not spend it in a useful activity?

#8: Keep the phone/computer away before bedtime. It's not only harmful but I haven't read a book at bedtime the ENTIRE year because of these two addictions. In fact, this reminds me, I haven't recharged my poor Kindle for two whole months! #stopthisatrocitynow

I wanttt!

#9: Say it. A lot of things go unspoken just because I'm confused about the other person's mindset (which is a rarity, because generally I know it by instinct, so people who confuse me also interest me greatly!). Therefore, to save myself the pain of overthinking, I will just be upfront and ask what the matter is! 

#10: Be chill. Enjoy life. Spend time with friends. Laugh more often (this is a need because I've had people tell me I don't smile enough and it feels so weird because... I don't know. I'm happy but it doesn't show on my face for some reason? Of course people aren't like people at home who can crack me up in a second, and they know my laugh is no less than a full-blown guffaw.) Anyway, laugh when someone cracks a joke. :P

#11: Learn more about Sikhism and teach you peoples about it too. I've done some reading and listening in 2016 and it has made me feel ever so lucky to have been born in this community, and it inspires me to live up to the name and do what we're supposed to do as Sikhs (be charitable, be kind, be truthful, be strong and fight for rights, to begin with). Also, today celebrates 350th birth anniversary of the tenth guru, Guru Gobind Singh Ji, also founder of the Khalsa and the one who instructed Sikhs to follow the Guru Granth Sahib Ji as the Guru to know about God and ways to live life. A powerful warrior and spiritual leader, Guru Gobind Singh Ji inspires us even today. I'd recommend this 43 minute documentary on his life: Life of Guru Gobind Singh Ji.

That's a lot to remember for a year, so I'll stop at that. I'm just happy 2016 is over and the new year comes with new promises and I am in a mindset to enjoy it, which is so awesome. Yay! How did 2016 treat you guys? Any resolutions for 2017?

7 comments:

  1. Heyo!!! That was some year there man. Even I recollected how big and eventful it had actually been, reading the post.

    Though it did look like you had many hoops to climb, the end did turn out well, yes?! And that is what is great. You know, speaking of which, this is the second post I've read lately about looking back at the year and coming out victorious by overcoming challenges. The how strange, almost spidey-ish is it that the other post was by Rachit. If you haven't, do give it a read.

    But the joy that I get reading your blog is well, non-attainable anywhere else, so yeah, I dearly enjoyed and smiled at all (except some) of your anecdotes and updates.

    I particularly loved the lessons learned part that you included in everything that you described in the year past. It is a pretty helpful exercise. It makes you think while you are writing :P I always love this part myself :P

    Coming to 2017, first of all, a big woohooo!! to your bestie's wedding. May it be most blessed for her and may you have an experience worth recollecting and smiling for your life. A big congratulations to your friend.

    Secondly, congratulations to you, my friend, again, on getting a kickass job offer. May you sail through everyday work life and make great and helpful new friends there. It is time you expand your friend just a tiny bit anyway :P

    All the best for your 2017 goals and specially to point 6. A girl needs to learn makeup man, I dunno what kind of friends get their eyebrows arched for that. You go for it girl!! ;)

    I am on the lookout so rain them posts this year, all right? Hungry and starving reader here, please!!

    ReplyDelete
  2. Heyee! All these 2017 goals, we match on them!

    It was great fun, reading a blog (and you) after so long. *smiles sheepishly*

    Is it too late to wish you a happy new year? :D

    ReplyDelete

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