9 Things that I Learned in 2019

9 Things that I learned in 2019

        Happy New Year! I'm so happy that I made it into 2020 and I'm really excited to see what's in store for this year. This past year was easily one of the toughest and most successful years I've had in a while. Thankfully there were more ups than downs. While I don't have any resolutions set in stone, I did learn a few things along the way. Here are 9 things that I learned in 2019:

The Importance of My Why

          Every blogger and business owner should know their why. The majority of us already know what we want to do and how we plan to go about it. Our why, is what keeps people interested and keeps us honest. Your why will keep you grounded. It'll help you decide which brands to work with, and how your own personal brand should evolve.

In July I co-hosted an event called the One Strong and Imperfect Brunch. We taught everyday women and future business owners on how to build and market their brands. We had amazing food, vendors for shopping, and taught three value-packed workshops.

When attendees expressed how much they enjoyed the event, I realized something. I create content that helps women look and feel their best. I want to help women be the best they can be! Whether that is through outfit inspiration, travel tips, or food recommendations. In our community, we need more support and less competing! I want to display and spread that sentiment as much as possible.

Share Love While You Can

        My family and I dealt with an abnormal amount of death this year. Those experiences helped me appreciate life a little more. I’ve made it my goal to tell people that I love them more and show them that I appreciate them while I still can. My friends and family have noticed that I’ve been handing out hugs more. If you know me then you know that’s a huge deal because I am NOT a hugger by any means. No matter if it's’ expected or comes as a surprise, death always causes us to recognize our mortality. Life is too short to hold onto anything that’s not going to matter in five years. Hold your loved ones close and create memories to outlive a lifetime!

I Can’t do it Alone

         I've got a hard time asking for help. Often times I wait until the very last minute to ask for help and by that time I'm stressed out and frantic. Act of services is my first love language so you'd think it would be easy to speak up in my time of need. Nope.

I'm blessed to have an amazing support system. From my fiancĂ© and family to my friends and blogger babes, they help me knock things off my to-do list. God’s timing is amazing and he’s shown himself strong through my support system this year. They've encouraged me during my spiritual walk and lifted me up when I was down. They keep me straight when I get off course.

Everyone has someone pushing them forward. I'm so thankful for each and everyone one of you and I'm so happy I don’t have to do this life alone.

An ultimate shout out to God who is always there even when I can’t reach a loved one with a phone call. With everything that has gone on this year God has shown me that he will make my burdens light. For someone who thrives off of “doing it herself,” my faith has grown knowing that I don’t have to take everything into my own hands. I can live life and hand my heavy loads over to him, and for that, I'm forever thankful!

Got to Keep Going

          If I could use one word to describe my character this year it would be perseverant. After almost ten years in the industry, I finally left Retail as a whole. While I loved what I did, I couldn’t deal with the lack of proper leadership and administration. I kept finding myself in the same position. I was creating content with amazing teammates, but dealing with an awful manager(s).

I decided in December 2018 that it was time for me to leave and pursue a marketing career. It took me four mentally exhausting months to land my current position. During those four months, I'd cry before going to work. I'd lay in bed on my days off and lost almost all motivation to be creative. I now realize that my unfortunate circumstances lead me to an amazing opportunity. Retail was my comfort zone. For me to grow, I had to step into the unknown and trust that my steps were being ordered.

Philippians 4:13 and Romans 8:28 are my favorite scriptures.

I can do all things through Christ that strengthens me. Phillippians 4:13

All things work together for the good of them that love God. Romans 8:28

The first six months of 2019 ran me ragged, but I kept going. No matter what season you’re in, keep going. All things always work out in the end and if they haven’t yet, it’s not the end. A bad day is only a bad day, not a bad life. Try again tomorrow, you’ll be glad you did.

Time Waits for No Man

          I had an aunt that told me after 18 life flies. Boy was she telling the truth. Christmas has come and gone. Now we are back in the first quarter with new goals and glistening eyes. We're ready to do the work and see what this new decade has in store for us.

Time is always moving and waits for no man or woman for that matter. One of my goals for this year has been to manage my time better. I want to achieve more balance in my life, not only work-life balance. I'm going to rid myself of that term since work is a part of my life. Placing my life opposite of work, almost makes work the enemy.

Instead, I want to find more ways to be creative in all aspects of my life. I plan on doing more things that I love like traveling and going to museums. Don’t wait until tomorrow when you can do it today! I don’t want to waste time being anything less than the best.

Consistency is Queen

          We have a common saying in the blogging community that content is king and consistency is queen. Content creation is my strong suit (see what I did there). But I do struggle with maintaining a level of consistency. With consistency, I know I'll do so much more this year. I don’t want to be one of those people who never reach their potential due to a lack of discipline. I want to be more consistent in 2020. There are no short cuts, we have to do the work.

Importance of Being Kind

          In a random conversation with one of my coworkers, she mentioned to me how kindness “wears well.” You know how we always joke about the celebrities who age well because they’re not problematic? It’s because they’re kind. You never know what someone is going through. That simple fact calls me to be kind and extend as much grace as I can. I'm so grateful that I'm marrying someone who is kind and that I have kind people around me. As I’ve gotten older I’ve realized that kindness is a character trait that’s overlooked and undervalued. Bitterness and anger wear on you year after year, and who wants wrinkles because you’re bent on being mean?

You Can’t Pour from an Empty Cup

          If you follow me on Instagram (@Genuinely_AA) then you know that I’ve been focusing quite a lot on self-care. Self-care is going to be the theme of my first quarter. It’s so important to take the time to assess where we’re at mentally and spiritually each day. Keeping our cups full gives us the ability to perform at our best. It's okay to set boundaries to protect your peace. It’s okay to say no. It’s okay to stay at home because you need alone time.

If we aren’t careful we’ll get so busy with the hustle and bustle of life our health will go on the back burner. Before we know it, our homes are a mess, our skin is breaking out, and we haven’t spoken to our friends in days. I plan on taking at least an hour for myself every day with no distractions. I am making sure that my cup stays full so I can continue to serve others.

It’s Okay to Enjoy Your Wins

         I’ve decided that I'm not going to hide my blessings anymore. God has been too good to me and is going to bless me so much this year, I won’t be able to anyway. I encourage you to share your wins as well. It doesn’t mean you’re better than anyone or that you’re bragging. You’ve worked hard and you deserve to take in that “I did it” moment. I'm going to lead by example in sharing a few of my wins from this year:

  • Started a new marketing position
  • Landed my first paid campaign during a major holiday
  • Co-hosted my first women’s empowerment event
  • Spoke on a panel to discuss the blogging industry
  • Got engaged (more on that later)
  • Completed three more paid campaigns during the holiday season
  • Signed my first 2020 contract before the conclusion of 2019

          Despite the low moments in 2019, I had so many highs. I am so excited to see what God is going to do in 2020 and I hope y'all are as well! I’d love to hear what you learned in 2019! What were some of your wins? Your losses? How did that shape you for 2020? What are you looking forward to this year?

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