2016 was rough, wasn’t it?
I didn’t really feel compelled to dwell on shortfalls and negatives from this past year. In fact, in my own personal bubble I call life, 2016 was a damn good year. But, everywhere on social media, there it was. People blaming 2016 for their problems. Posts exclaiming that 2016 was “literally the worst.” Privileged, #firstworldproblem-burdened, media-savvy people blaming an arbitrary number for everything that is wrong with the world. So I wanted to write my final thoughts on 2016–from a personal and more ‘worldly’ standpoint, if you will–and be done with it.
When bad things happen, it’s so easy to find something to blame. Trust me, I felt the anger too. From tragedies in Nice and Berlin, to fear of police, to deaths of beloved musicians, to political fear-mongering, to the US election that pissed pretty much everyone off, 2016 was rough. We felt it in every corner of the world. Every tragedy seemed to cut a deeper hole into our collective sentiment about time, and hope, and the future.
It’s easy to blame “2016” for everything that happened. But every year comes with its own obstacles. And maybe we’re only feeling the gravity of 2016 now more than ever because of its recency in our minds, or because we live in a world that’s more inter-connected online than ever before. But in lieu of feeling angry, I think it’s more important than ever to hold on to all the good that happens, too. And no, it’s not selfish. It’s how we take charge of our tomorrow. Because the future can’t possibly be lived in the past.
So, I’d like to start off 2017 by thinking about all the good things that happened in 2016. For me, 2016 was a great year. I found an amazing boyfriend that makes me feel beautiful every single day (subtext: he takes all of my pictures). I have a close-knit group of friends I can finally call my own (that’s honestly really hard to do when you’ve moved so many times). I traveled to Costa Rica. I went on a helicopter ride and tried water rappelling. I grew professionally and took some huge leaps in my career. I spent time with my family. I took some time to reconnect with myself (by starting to blog again, for example!). I started a new workout and stuck it out until the end (I always get bored and unmotivated, so this is huge for me). And so much more than I could even begin to list out here.
Also, Leo DiCaprio won an Oscar. And same-sex marriage was legalized. So that’s pretty great, too.
All that said, 2016 wasn’t easy. Most years never are. But there’s always something, no matter how small, to help us move forward. 2017 is going to have a lot of things wrong with it too, but that shouldn’t stop us from seeing the good. This year, I resolve to spend more time being present, and being thankful for everything, big and small. It’s all we can really do.