14 Things I Learned in 2014


Dahican, December 2014

I'm finding it hard to believe that 2014 is about to end. Looking back, I have to say it was the best year of my life so far. With all the happenings that made my year fruitful and noteworthy, I learned quite a lot which changed the way I see and approach life and I'm hopeful enough to bring these lessons with me as I welcome another exciting year.

A bit of disclaimer though: learning these lessons in 2014 doesn't make me come close to being perfect, so better yet do not expect me to be one. I am still a work in progress - still fervently praying with all conviction that I'll be able to continue living up to these lessons this coming 2015.

Manila Cathedral, July 2014

I learned that life isn't always easy and fair.
In the first place, nobody told me it will always be. Challenges are inevitable - each having a different gravity, duration and frequency - but I somehow managed to make out of it alive and with a more positive disposition. I discovered who my true friends are. Because a life worth living is supposed to make you better, not bitter.  

I learned to be independent. 
I used to be someone who can't do things without company, but somehow earlier this year, I managed to go to the gym alone, eat alone, do things alone and I'm happy to say that I quite enjoyed it which led me to rewarding myself some Me Time every once in a while. But there's something I still need to accomplish - going to a cinema alone. Whether if I'm going to achieve it this year still remains to be a question.

I learned to focus on my needs.
That's what being single for an entire year has taught me. My needs became my priority - on things that kept me at my happiest and issues that warranted my immediate attention. If I needed sleep, I got it. If I was craving for something, I satisfied it. If I don't feel like talking to anyone, I won't. If I needed to close some doors, I did. A tad too selfish, but that's how I become stronger, wiser and conserved my worth.

I learned to say NO.
I used to be a Yes person all the time but somewhere along the way, I realized that it suck out the bliss in me. Not all things are worth my time and attention. It's actually quite related to focusing on my needs first that I learned to say No to things that do not seem to be of big importance to me. 

I learned my mistakes.
It's hard to admit but my impulsiveness and impatience often led me to making wrong decisions and producing irrational actions. But that's life. More often that not, some lessons are learned the hard way, and most of the time, these were the ones worth learning of. And once you learned what needs to, do not ever lose your chance to a more beautiful life by making the same mistake again.   

I learned to close doors. 
This year, I have accepted the fact that some people are not meant to stay in our lives, and some people are not worth our time and our effort. Two words: move forward. 

What lies behind us and what lies ahead of us are tiny matters compared to what lives within us. Do not be afraid nor disappointed. Have faith in Him.

I learned to date smart.
A bit funny to admit but I changed the way I see dating. I learned to date not just for the sake of company, but with honest intentions and yes, I didn't resort to hang-outs only. I tried to filter out their intentions and checked on their consistencies and that whoever wasn't consistent enough may not have a second chance. Because that's what life taught me - that any man who really loves you and wants you to be a part of their life will definitely make an effort to put you in it, and will be consistent all through out. Consider yourself lucky if you meet one and by all means, keep it. It's not everyday that you can come across such treasure. Note to self. Always.

I learned to stick to my standards.
I made up a list of who I want to be with forever, even if other people think there's no such thing as forever. I met a few people, dated most of them even when they don't seem to perfectly fit the bill. But you know when something feels wrong about them, then something is really wrong about them. Thank God, I didn't settle for less of what I think I deserve because He surely has the best for me. In His perfect time.

I learned to pray harder.
2014 was such a challenging year for me that I learned to hold on to my faith. I also had my fair share of ups and downs and it was only through God's interventions in my life that I somehow surpassed them all. When I don't know what lies ahead of me, when I am uncertain whether this was the right path for me to take, I succumbed to prayers and it is then  that I was able to find comfort and joy.  

Caleruega, September 2014
I learned to open up to people.
One thing that I'm truly grateful for this year is having a wider and bigger social circle. I met a lot of friends both offline and online, and whether or not they will remain in the coming years, I know meeting them definitely has a reason. I may be a bit snob online but I guess I was able to loosen up a bit, so for me it was already an achievement. 

I learned to be grateful. 
In 2013, I learned to look at life more positively despite of the trials and challenges thrown along my way. This year, I worked my way into embracing each and every parcel of life with gratitude, whether good and bad, and surprisingly, life just keeps getting better even with all the bad stuff in it. My  life isn't perfect and complete, but appreciating what I have right now seems to have a bigger impact on happiness rather than sulking out on things I don't have. True enough, when you open yourself to gratitude, more opportunities and blessings kept on coming.

What's written on the first page of my 2014 planner
I learned to trust again.
This earned the spot of being my greatest struggle of the year. If you were like me who have been through a lot, I bet you'd agree it won't be easy. But slowly, with time, I did. I am happy I did. Not because I can't forgive or let go of what happened in the past but because there are still a lot of great people in my life who are working really hard to earn it. I learned to trust again because he deserves to be trusted.

Waiting for the right time.
I learned to wait.
Patience is really not my virtue but with all the waiting I have to enjoy and endure, I know pretty soon it will be. I learned to appreciate taking things slow, to let go of expectations and just let life unfold as it is, and sometimes allow it to throw in some amazing surprises along the way. Because the more I forced control over things, the more chances that the things meant for me slipped through my hand, when in fact that God has always something better in store. If there's one thought that helped me get through everything despite my impatience, it's knowing and believing that whatever is meant for me will not miss me and whatever misses me was not meant for me. 

Carmelite Monastery, November 2014
I learned about God's unceasing love for me.
He always has the best plans for me. He allowed me to meet the right people, took me away from the wrong ones, intervened in things when needed to keep me safe and sane, and never left me alone in all I've been through. I somehow wished I could have been faithful to Him earlier in my life but I guess that just how He works.

Manila, July 2014

It was a tough year but hey, I survived! I never thought I could learn that much in 365 days but I believe those were all I need to learn  for now. More to come! Thank you, two-zero-one-four! 

And for the coming year, I'm embracing it with all excitement, putting this life verse always into mind.

With God on my side, I'm going to make the best out of my 2015! Lezzzz do this! 

Some photos were taken from my #lifein365 project in Instagram, @misslitratista.

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  1. You don't need to go the cinema alone. Im just a call away kung kelangan mo ng kasama.... Basta ikaw bayad!!! HAHAHA USER FRIENDLY. Kidding aside, thank you for being a true and trustworthy friend. Wishing you all the best this 2015. :)

  2. A little bit late but I'm glad I stumbled upon this! Thanks for sharing!



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