If you’re new here, welcome! (big hugs sent your way), and if you’re not new, you still get hugs, but you’re probably slightly more familiar with my end of year reflective postings and know that I kinda sorta love them! ( re: 2016, 2015)
I figured I’d do things a little different this year and instead of sticking to my usual written brief, I googled one of them pre-made reflective question lists lol and going to use that to help me recap this whirlwind of a year! (there are 50 questions; is that a lot?)
Here it goes:
- The most important goal that I achieved this year was:
I graduated! 2 years later whilst being abroad and working full time and going through life madness and still being able to do really well makes me proud of myself!
- My biggest fitness accomplishment was:
Probably running in Ramadan! Joining a running club last year in Kuwait definitely upped my fitness and I surprised myself with timings and distances I thought I was too old for haha although the fitness and running took a massively sharp decline since September lol running in Ramadan, both in Kuwait in the heat and in Canada was yay! mostly because I’d always had the mindset that people who do that are crazy and why would anyone do that to themselves, but woop!
- My biggest career accomplishment was:
leaving my old school to work at one of the top schools in Kuwait which is a tad more ‘professional’ I suppose. Not really a big deal lol but I could’ve easily stayed at my old place where I was comfortable and complacent in terms of what was expected of me and what I was giving versus now where I feel more overwhelmed at times and like super duper working but I feel better about myself and my profession whilst I’m doing it if that makes sense..!
- My biggest relationship accomplishment was:
not holding back I suppose; in terms of expressing feelings be they positive or negative at times. life too short and we’re all going to die soon so if you love someone tell them you love them, if they make you happy or inspire you or annoy you, just tell them x friends, family, strangers, what’s the worse thats going to happen?
- These are the skills I acquired this year:
-I taught myself a teeny bit of photoshop and lightroom lolol (it still counts!)
-creating sick websites and presentations for uni projects that I was proud of
-Arabic! Learning Arabic and recently taking lessons to pick up vocab has been a massive skill for me lol
-putting on falsies in 5 minutes. practice makes perfect
-[how to apply eyeshadow. lol]
- A big mistake that I made this year—and the lesson that I learned as a result—was:
-checking flight times. Lucy and I missed our flight to Nepal because I read the time wrong and OBVIOUSLY no ones that thick so you’re not going to get insurance so that was a waste and had to get a new flight
-Also nearly missed my flight to Istanbul for the Reyhanli deployment and if it wasn’t for Qes texting me to have a safe flight in the morning, I wouldn’t have gone. Lesson learned: triple check flight times and tell your friends so they can remind you or wake you up in case you fall asleep (because that has also happened to me. smh.)
-in terms of life stuff, I learned and came to accept that I’m not responsible for how people behave or their actions/reactions and that everyone, including me, has a choice which we consciously make to do whatever it is we want to or don’t want to do. If you want the apple, eat the apple, you want to hang out with mates, go, but then don’t say you were coerced into doing something you really didn’t want to do. You had a choice, you made your choice, simple as lol
- An obstacle or a challenge that I overcame this year:-I think being afraid of the unknown. I’ve grown to not be as much of a scaredy cat as I think I was before.-Also my final project for uni. jeez.
8. This year, I learned the following about myself:
I am beyond blessed alhamdulillah. I have my health, a family that loves me, a roof over my head, and God. I am more than good. Anything and everything else is extra and I feel as though I am so much more consciously aware of this that I’ve ever been. I don’t stress myself out as much as I might have done in the past about life, and plans etc. inshallah everything’s going to work out the way its supposed to and there’s a time for everything. We plan, and he plans, and so far it’s worked out okay right, so he knows what he’s doing lol it sounds really loosy I know lol and its not easy to do, but if you consciously continue to remind yourself to just chill out and let things flow naturally, it becomes a natural mindset. Just smile to yourself and say alhamdulillah I’m good! (do it now I promise you’ll feel it!)
- Here’s something I learned about other people:
they suck sometimes. but sometimes they are the most beautiful, warm hearted, genuine freaking human beings on the planet and they deserve your love and energy and support. and you know what, so do the sucky people because love really does make the world go round and life is too short not to spread light and goodness x you do it because thats the kind of person you are and don’t let their personality or disingenuousness cloud your judgment or question your reasoning. you do you because its what you believe in. leave the rest to God x
- This made me laugh the hardest this year:
I laugh a lot so it’s hard to choose lol
-in India when Amani asked the waiter if they had Hummus. DEAD.
-when the plane landed and I survived ( refer to#26)
-my sister dancing
- The most fun I had all year was:
I try and have fun everyday..!
- My best memory of the year was:
-returning to Nepal 7 years later and walking those same streets I did at 19. Being recognized by the neighbours who I was staying with and my heart just wanting to freaking explode with this burning love and happiness and contentness for life and these beautiful people x
-Reyhanli deployment with SKT. That’s probably going to be one of the best memories of my life and I hope and pray it’s changed me as a person, as a human, for the better x
- My biggest regret of the year was:
This may sound very cliche but I have no regrets. I’ve been sat here thinking and going through the months of the year to reflect on something I really wanted to do or somewhere I wanted to go or anything that I didn’t do which I now regret but I can’t think of anything. I’ve come to a point alhamdulillah which I’m consciously aware of the ‘big’ decisions I make for myself and in life so as to not have any regrets and later on wish I chose another route or did something differently..
When the Reyhanli dates were set they were right in the middle of back-to-school and orientation at the new place and visas and paperwork which would guarantee owed salaries etc. I didn’t want to make a bad impression at the new school or lose my hard earned money for the past few years but also no way in the world did I want to miss out on Reyhanli! Thought about it for a while, like the entire summer lol and concluded that whatever, I’d miss out on pay and learning the ropes of the new school and making friends with newbies, etc etc but if I didn’t go I would SO regret it for the rest of my life and I didn’t want to look back thinking ‘what if’. I could always make the money back, and again if you know me I have this love/hate relationship with money, and I didn’t want bloody money of all things to be the reason I missed out on the opportunity. So I chose and I don’t regret my decision one bit! wallah if I didn’t go I would’ve kicked meself in the backside for being a massive dumb!
-I had been wanting to go back to Nepal for ages, more so when I moved to Kuwait because it was so close, and I had mentioned it to Lucy before. She said lets go in April and I had booked and changed a Eurotrip to Prague/Vienna/Budapest legit like 3 times like an idiot, but then took it as a sign it wasn’t meant to be at this very moment in life so cancelled it, lost me ticket x3 and booked Nepal and it was such an epic time alhamdulillah x
be conscious of your choices and listen to what your heart and soul wants. #noregrets
- My biggest disappointment of the year was:
-people; in terms of humanity
-not getting this relief work job I was so stoked about but its okay everything happens for a reason
-samosas in India! I was so excited because samosas are my favorite and I figured duh India has the best, but nope. Nepal takes the cake for best samosas ever.
- The books I read this year were:
-Sofia Khan is not Obliged (first and second one)
–seeds planted in concrete
(do uni books count?!)
- My favorite movie of the year was:
nothings really sticking out atm…Moana was pretty cool lol (I don’t know..!)
17. A TV show I really enjoyed watching this year was:
-The Apprentice UK
- I really enjoyed this live performance (concert, play, musical, or dance performance):
-Seeing the Kite Runner in London was my favorite!
-K’naan on Canada Day was super cool too!
- Here’s a song I listened to over and over again this year:
Too Good at Goodbyes – Sam Smith
Big Picture – London Grammar
Happier – Ed Sheeran
Same Drugs – Chance the Rapper
20. This is something I wish I hadn’t bought this year:
probably clothes I either haven’t worn yet or old wore once. just a dumb waste lol but it’s one of the things I want to get better at next year in terms of just not buying stuff, clothes especially, and if I do, 10 items go for that one piece.
- This is the best thing I bought all year:
-my Gucci bum bag (boob bag as mama calls it!) It’s so practical and functional for me and I already feel as though its been rinsed but definitely making the most of it so yay!
-Also I think my phone was bought this year and that’s definitely a best. Not sure if many of you know but I only use my iPhone to take photos and love love it!
-The oversized ripped denim jacket from Zara that everyone has lol I absolutely love it and chuck it on with everything and it shall continue to be rinsed!
- Someone I really enjoyed spending time with this year was:
really weird, but my instagram friends! This was the year I physically met people who I’ve followed and chatted with via social media, and being able to spend real quality time with them, and even travel with, was so enlightening and inspiring for my soul. Halima, Qes, and Mariah. There’s good people, then there are golden people who God put in this world for a reason x love you guys and I’m so glad to have you in my life! xx
- I adopted this new positive habit:
consciously looking for the good even in the worst of times. I’ve been working on this for a couple years and I want to get to a stage where it becomes second nature. Focusing on the positive instead of the negative is such a breath of fresh air and makes you appreciate life and situations and realize what’s truly important in the here and now.
24. I dropped this negative habit:
catching feelings – in terms of blaming myself for other people’s behaviors or actions (still a work in progress but getting better at it lol) Sometimes it’s not you and you’ve got to cut yourself some slack. Still reflect and if you’re in the wrong own up to it and apologize and try and fix it if its worth fixing, but if it’s not reciprocated don’t beat yourself up for it. You tried and did whatever because that’s who you are as a person and you’ve got no reason to apologize for that. Remember, you’re not responsible for how other people’s actions. How you react to a situation tells more about yourself than the other person.
25. One time I stood up for myself this year was:
I think internally just being able to let things and people go and not take it to heart; accepting that things change, as do people, and that its unhealthy dwelling on the ‘whys’ and working yourself up over it all the time. Standing up for my heart and peace of mind I’d say lol and knowing when to leave things and people be, simply because it is what it is.
26. The scariest thing I went through this year was:
wallah I thought I was going to die on the way to Nepal. We were caught in a massive storm and turbulence was unbelievable; literally the sky was lighting up all around us with the thunder and the airport was closed so we couldn’t land and I just lost it. Ive never ever ever cried as much as I did on a plane. I sent voice notes to my family telling them I loved them, made promises to myself incase I survived etc etc. I was flying with my friend Lucy and just praying so hard for the both of us and telling her I loved her and glad I was dying with her lolololol laughing at myself now but jeez. definitely the scariest!
- A really cool thing I created this year was:
the current vibe in my new flat. Just a clean white open space with lots of light that feels like home and ‘my space’ when I walk in the door.
- My most common mental state this year was:
“we’re all going to die soon anyways” – is that even a mental state? Say what you want to say, do what you want to do, #noregrets
29. Here’s how I grew emotionally this year:
I cried when I wanted to cry but then also knew when to stop and pick meself up and get on with it.
30. Here’s how I grew spiritually this year:
-consciously made an effort to pray 5 times a day
-consciously put all my eggs into God’s basket and even though things might not have gone my way, put my trust and faith into the fact that it wasn’t meant to be because that’s not what he wanted for me and that’s cool! And it sounds really simple but it’s a constant struggle to get to that point of full conviction and faith and hope (for me anyways), but I feel myself getting better at it alhamdulillah
31. The best gift I received this year was:
life. waking up every morning when not everyone was as blessed. alhamdulillah x
32. The nicest thing someone did for me this year was:
-probably comfort me and tell me its going to be okay.
-give me hugs
-also Qes for inviting me to join deployment; will always be grateful for you x
-Mariah for meeting me once and offering me to bunk with her. what a freaking gem x
-my brother and sister for being my support system sometimes and telling me nice things about myself at times I wasn’t feeling the greatest x
33. The nicest thing I did for someone else this year was:
I hope I did nice things for people this year! I don’t believe in keeping track of things you do for others; you do them from the heart because you want to and then its over and done with x
34. I showed real gumption this year when I:
when I was able to bake brownies without any eggs or butter! coconut oil is surprisingly quite good for a lot of things!
35. If I could change one thing about this year it would be:
nothing. everything had to happen the way it did to get me to this very moment and its all good alhamdulillah x
36. A new food/dish I tried this year was:
figs in Reyhanli – I’d always been apprehensive about trying them lol
37. This year my physical health was:
alright actually alhamdulillah x no accidents or blood or broken bone incidents so alhamdulillah xx
38. Here’s a new friend I made this year:
- This year I traveled to:
-Dubai, Istanbul, Reyhanli, America, London, Nepal, Mumbai, Toronto (but that never counts) (legit ugh-ing myself rn like is that it?!)
- Here’s one adventure I had this year:
If you know me you’ll know I consider taking an alternate route on the way home is an adventure, so I have many lol
-in Nepal trying to find my spring roll place from 7 years ago (they no longer had them and it broke my heart)
-rooftop with Qes in Reyhanli. so sick.
-walking and talking around Knightsbridge for hours with a random (Adz) who helped me at Harrods and now were mates!
-going for dinner with a random group of girls after one of the fashion shows in London. They said they liked my turban and we ended up at dindin!
-scaling buildings to get on the roof with Hashmat in Istanbul. SO freaking worth it and the most beautiful view of Istanbul
- One contribution I made to my community was:
(is it terrible that I feel this doesn’t apply to me because I don’t feel like I’ve got one in Kuwait like I did in Canada?!)
42. This year I spent a lot of time here:
-the rooftop pool lounge bit at my old building
-on my laptop
- This year I broke out of my comfort zone by:
-wearing my glasses a lot! it sounds silly lol but I used to have a love-hate relationship with my glasses and only wore them when I took my contacts out and never to work or in public etc. Not too bothered now really lol sticking the contacts in seems to be more of an effort these days haha
-(also just chatting to strangers, eating on my own, making myself my best friend and enjoying my own company etc.)
- A hobby I loved spending time on this year was:
reading, traveling, editing photos, creating content. it makes me happy.
- This year I practiced self-care by:
breathing, praying, face masking. doing what makes me happy.
- My biggest time waster this year was:
[a boy who didn’t want to marry me] – I was planning to keep that as is, but a really good friend made mention that its very unlike me to see things as a waste of time and not look at the benefit or good that’s come from a situation. And I thought about and I know she’s right. Although a part of me wants to say it was a waste of my time, it was also a learning opportunity and I’m not ungrateful for having said person in my life because we’re still kinda sorta best friends but it is what it is I suppose x
- Here’s a great time-saving hack I learned this year:
making lists.. if I ever felt like I had a lot to get done and just super overwhelmed with it all, making a list and being able to physical see and refer back to it and cross off things that were completed def helped me not waste time and stay on track. Daily lists, monthly lists, I like lists lol
- What I am most grateful for this year is:
my family. the boy who didn’t want to marry me. my friends. the opportunities I’ve been blessed with and all the amazing people I’ve been lucky enough to cross paths with as a result; who I’ve hopefully been able to be nice to and love, or who have loved me, inspired me, or taught me something x
- Here are three words that would sum up this year:
blessed, reflective, surprising
50. If I could travel back to the beginning of the year, here’s some advice I would give myself:
-no you don’t need to buy that.
-save some money for a rainy day.
-order burgers if you want to eat burgers.
-tell her you love her. tell him you love him.
-don’t worry too much, it’ll get sorted xx
There you have it lol kudos if you managed to get through all 50! I’d love to know some of the goals and aspirations you might have set for yourselves in the new year so please share below! How do you plan on achieving them because that’s always the hard part lol
I’m about to make a final cuppa for the year and watch the BFG because I was supposed to watch it with a mate about a year ago but they flopped and I don’t wish to carry that burden into the new year haha x Wishing you a beautiful 365 days ahead filled with love and kindness, and perhaps a year in which you finally put your heart and own happiness first xoxo