2019 was a year of self exploration. My favourite learning was that I started letting go of expectations. Expectations I thought others had. Expectations from myself.

I had a lot of misconceptions on who I thought I had to be. It hurt a lot when I thought I was missing out; it felt like I wasn’t using my time – my life – properly. It was ever-present and enveloping. I was always wrestling with regret.

In 2019, I started listening to myself and gave myself permission to do what I actually needed. Not for the appeasement of others or my idealized self, but for myself in the moment. I slept a lot, played a lot of games, and ate a lot of bad food. I opted to stay in to study instead of socialize. I said no decisively and more often than ever before.

I did a lot of things that my old self would rue over, but I started trusting in my decisions. I started communicating my reasoning too. I thought I would face disapproval and frustration. Instead, I found unwavering support and understanding. Now, I have more energy to give to the people and projects I love. I feel more free than I have all decade.

As we start the new year, we are bombarded with reminders of what we SHOULD be doing. Screw it. Be free, friends! You take care of you so you can take care of others. You do you.

I go into 2020 excited for all of the things that really belong to me. I hope you do too.