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Happy New Year! 5 Things I learned in 2023…

Surprise! It’s that time of year again... Time to reflect on everything we’ve done this year and convince ourselves this is the year we’re going to become the perfect person, and miraculously change our lives forever. Obviously that never happens but we can always try. This is not going to be the post that tells you how to become a new you in a month, but a realistic reflection of everything I’ve learned over this year, so that maybe you can learn something about yourself in the process. It has been a big year for me, possibly the best year of my life, and I’ve learned a lot about myself and about my life along the way. No one wakes up one day with the secret to life, but we learn little secrets along the way that eventually we can hope to piece together to finally understand how to live a fulfilled and peaceful life. So here are some of the “secrets” I learned in 2023…

Don’t take things too seriously

I am the queen of taking things too seriously, all of my friends and family can attest to that fact. But this year has been a year of challenges. Whether it’s a job, or relationships, or traveling, or anything else, I’ve had to deal with a lot of difficulties. There are plenty of times I could’ve turtled and freaked out about problems, but I’ve realized that as long as I am safe, and have a place to live and food to eat, everything else will work itself out. I have friends and support systems all over the place, and I know they would have my back if I needed them. Plus I’ve learned to take care of myself. Fights with friends, loss of a modeling job, whatever it may be, things will usually get better, and you will realize all of these things you spent months worrying about were never really as bad as you made them out to be. It’s a pretty freeing realization. 

Say yes

I know I’m not the only person who gets an invite somewhere, and instead of getting out of my comfort zone and going, it’s easier to just stay home and avoid people. I have definitely missed out on a lot of cool opportunities because of fear. This year I pushed myself to say yes when people reach out to me, and just try new things. And because of this, I’ve gotten to meet some really interesting people and have some special experiences (Obviously exercise caution and don’t follow random strangers home, follow your gut). On this same note, ask people to do things. If you want to hang out with someone, just ask! It’s not likely they’ll say no, and if they do, then it isn’t a big deal. (Back to point #1). Just enjoy life! You only get one.

Friends are SO important

The friends I have made this year have changed my life forever. I’m really getting to choose the people I want to make time for, and meeting people who are unlike anyone I’ve met before. I’ve realized that, even if I don’t see them very often, these people support me through everything, and I can trust them. That is a very comforting feeling, one that makes all the challenges I go through just a little bit easier. I think everyone should prioritize their friends, because they really are the ones who have your back at all times.

Set boundaries

I am the worst at setting boundaries, as a kid I used to let people walk allllll over me, and I still do sometimes, but I’ve had to learn that that does not make life easier.  It just makes you bitter when people start to take advantage of you. I’ve realized this specifically through having to share a room and apartment with a bunch of strangers. If you don’t say something, they will not know or care that they’re doing something that upsets you. This also comes from working as a model. Clients and agencies will push you really hard, or disregard your needs if you don’t explicitly ask for them. Though it’s uncomfortable to ask for things, it’s better than being in an uncomfortable situation that could’ve been avoided. So make sure you’re being clear when something is bothering you.

Do the thing

You really never know what tomorrow is going to look like, so don’t waste your time. I never know if I’ll be in the same country again, if I’ll ever see these people again, or even what I’ll be doing the next day. It is easy to be scared, and to avoid things just because it’s easier, but you are likely to miss out on something you don’t want to miss, out of fear. If you want to do something, travel somewhere, spend time with someone, do it. You’ll be mad at yourself later if you don’t. 

So there you have it, every lesson I’m carrying into 2024. Not that I think this is the magic solution to a perfectly happy and peaceful life, but, like I said, it might take you just one step further in your journey. I think we spend our whole lives learning, which is what keeps it fun. I hope you can take something from this, and that you all have a good start to the year. I am wishing everyone a happy and fulfilled 2024, full of love and learning. Happy new year! 

Until next time,

Sammie Taylor

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