Life

Goodbye 2018 #Yearinreview

Goodbye 2018

On the last day of the year, it’s only fitting I look back at how the year has been. I usually spend the week between Christmas and New Year’s Eve reflecting on the year but this time around, things had been a tad busy. However, yesterday, I had the entire day to myself and it was helpful to think about the year while I pottered around the house.

Before I reflect on the different aspects in 2018, a reminder about my word for the year. I chose CREATE and set some plans around it to fit in with different areas in my life. Did choosing the word help? I like to think it did.

Work in 2018

2018 was interesting on the work front. At the beginning of the year, I’d only been in my work place for just a little over a year. I continued to enjoy working with my clients individually in the public system but towards mid-year, it started to lose meaning which had me quite worried. I also started private practice once a week mid-year and while it has been okay, I need to make it work in a way that fulfils me and doesn’t just mean churning out clients. Given my lack of enthusiasm in my full time role, I figured it was time for a change. I began looking for jobs in Sydney {because I realised the Shire was calling me back} but then ended up also applying for a senior clinical position up this way. I got the job up here and it made sense to take it. I’ve been in the new role for three weeks so far and I feel optimistic about it. I know it won’t be without its challenges but I’m looking forward to developing the role.

Writing in 2018

I wrote on and off in 2018. I continued to work on editing my novel but have given that up since September. I think I need some space from it. The biggest writing win for me in 2018 was being shortlisted for the Newcastle Short Story competition and consequently being published in their anthology. Apart from that, I did dabble in poetry on the blog and in my notebooks. I have restarted writing again and hope to continue with this into the new year. The blog was a bit quieter than usual with not as many personal posts as previous years; I think I have been worried about who is reading these posts and again, it has to do with something I have not spoken about on the blog.

Relationships in 2018

2018 has been the year of relationships. Ties were strengthened with wonderful people already in my life and new ties were formed. I put myself out there and reached out to friends when I needed help. And they were wonderful and delivered in abundance. My friends on the coast are family to me and I’ve made an effort to continue to connect with my Sydney friends. I met new bloggers in India and here in Australia, thereby connecting at a deeper level. People bag out social media a lot of the time but I’ll be honest, I think when used responsibly, you can truly connect with people and take that connection offline too. I tried dating again and met someone who added to my life in significant ways at the time and continues to do so in a different capacity. I saw my parents and my sister in person after three years and it was really good to do so. I still have moments where I wish my sister and I were at least on the same continent but I doubt that will ever become a reality given my loathing for the cold and hers for the heat! Relationships add meaning to our lives. And I am so grateful for all the wonderful people in my life. I really don’t think I could have gotten through 2018 without them.

Travel in 2018

In 2018, I travelled solo to Adelaide in March and absolutely loved it. I explored places, attended the Writers’ festival, drank wine, chilled at the beach, read, relaxed and wrote. In May, I went on a road trip with the then boyfriend up to Byron Bay. It was a great week and the highlight was seeing the sun rise at Byron. Finally, in November, I travelled to India to visit my family. It was good to see them, eat all the food and connect with bloggers I’d known online for years.

Physical health in 2018

My health thankfully hasn’t been too bad this year. I had a viral fever for a couple of days in January and then again when I went to India. But apart from that, I’ve been reasonably healthy. My skin has taken a bit of a beating though, with dermatitis and now what’s looking like acne. 2018 has also been the year I’ve probably been my fittest and strongest. I have exercised and focussed mainly on strength-training. I am at my lightest weight as an adult {which is surprising as weight-loss was not a goal}. I have also enjoyed yoga this year and been running occasionally. I managed to run City2Surf for the very first time and must admit I’m keen to try again. I am so grateful to be in good health physically because not being active would definitely have an adverse impact on me in several ways.

Mental Health in 2018

Anxiety has been my companion for most of this year thanks to a challenge that persisted from the year before as well as work stuff. Unsurprisingly, given the amount of anxiety and then overthinking, the black dog reared its head halfway through the year. Unlike my previous depressive episode, this time around, I was more aware and instead of withdrawing from people and exercise, I pushed myself to connect and keep engaging in activities. Sure, there were several dark moments and fragile times but I saw them through thanks to the help of some amazing friends, some serendipitous life events, some books I read and some things I did.

Highlights of 2018

One of the highlights of this year has to be meeting Trent Dalton but more importantly, reading what he wrote when he signed a copy of my book. I’ve said it before – he will have no idea just how positive that was for me given the state of my mind at the time. So thank you, Trent. The other highlight was being published this year in an anthology. Apart from that, my brief relationship which taught me so much and helped me live in the moment, be spontaneous and experience all the things was a wonderful highlight.

Challenges in 2018

As mentioned, my mental health has been a bit of a challenge particularly in the latter half of the year. Anxiety has always been my companion but my mood dipped in the latter half mostly due to existential dilemmas and overthinking. I have however, reached out to friends who offer me empathy, support and just practical advice when I need it. The other challenge was something that continued from 2017 and actually became worse this year. It contributed to my mental health problems too. Without giving out too many details as it involves others, I had to reach out to the police and lawyers for some help. It was challenging and stressful and continues to keep me slightly hypervigilant. But once again, my friends have been amazing through this process.

Lessons from 2018

It has been a year filled with social activities, wonderful experiences and learnings. I have gained knowledge about the world, about fascinating topics, about myself, about writing, and about life. I have learnt that I love learning and that this learning will never end until I die. I have pondered the deeper questions including the meaning of life and my purpose in this world leading to several sleepless nights. I have decluttered stuff from my life and will continue to do so because life is more about experiences and connections and less about things {books do not count!} I have faced adversity and challenges but it has made me reach out and connect more with people. I am imperfect and I will continue to struggle. I will make mistakes and have good days and bad. But I am also stronger than I give myself credit.

So thank you, 2018. For the struggles that built me. For the wonderful experiences that helped me grow. For the people in my life who listen, make me laugh, wipe my tears. For the people in my life who share thoughts, feelings and the mundane everyday things. For music that fills me and books that validate me. For the sleepless nights of questioning meaning and purpose. For all the new people who crossed my path online and offline and added to my life in some way. For good health and travel. For the dark days to help me appreciate the silver linings. For the laughter, the lessons, and the tears.

I bid adieu with a sense of gratitude and hope.

How was 2018 for you?

Do share!

***Linking with Vidya for her Gratitude Circle***

Featured image: Pexels

 

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  • Shubhangi Srikanth
    31 December 2018 at 5:49 pm

    Wow! That was amazingly comprehensive! I’m most inspired by your solo travel! I have never traveled alone but I’d like to do so some day!
    Here’s wishing you a wonderful and healthy new year!

    • Sanch @ Sanch Writes
      6 January 2019 at 4:25 pm

      Thanks Shubhangi, I love solo travel! It’s fantastic and a nice way to meet people too. Have a wonderful 2019!

  • Ness
    31 December 2018 at 6:26 pm

    What an amazing year you’ve had. It’s such a credit to you that you’ve achieved so much despite your struggles. 2019 can only be better. Happy new year!

    • Sanch @ Sanch Writes
      1 January 2019 at 12:34 pm

      Thank you Ness! It’s interesting how when you reflect, you do notice all the good things too. During some of my darker moments in the year, I didn’t think this was possible but overall, it’s been good. Hope you have a lovely 2019

  • Shalzmojo
    1 January 2019 at 2:24 am

    What a deeply introspective post Sanch – you are quite the writer my friend. I read till the end and then re-read as I loved your honest way of assessing everything and I mean everything in your life. Thank you for it – this helped me assess my life in a new light too!

    So good to see you drawing out the good from 2018 – so much positivity in this post. I hear you on the fitness and health section – may the force be with you on that in 2019 too.

    Hugs for a brilliant year ahead darling gurl – May you swallow the Universe to become wholesome again!!! xoxo
    Shalzmojo recently posted…#MyMojo – 10 things to do in Shimla by Swati SinhaMy Profile

    • Sanch @ Sanch Writes
      1 January 2019 at 7:07 am

      Aww thanks so much Shalz! I do hope 2019 is good for you too xx

  • Sunita Saldhana
    2 January 2019 at 12:04 am

    That post sure was an in depth description of your year. i hope this year helps you overcome the challenges you faced last year and that it is filled with lots of love and laughter.
    Sunita Saldhana recently posted…Goodbye, 2018! I will miss you!My Profile

  • Shilpa
    2 January 2019 at 4:42 pm

    Hi Saanch ! I have been following your blog for the past two years. I am in love with your words and the way you put them in your post. Keep writing dear. Happy new year!

    • Sanch @ Sanch Writes
      5 January 2019 at 5:52 pm

      Thank you Shilpa for the kind words. I hope 2019 is great for you!

  • Parul Thakur
    3 January 2019 at 12:30 am

    I see you as a strong woman. We all have problems but when we face them and then look to tackle them, half the battle is won. I am glad relationships, conversations, health went well. Some challenges will take time but eventually iron out. Loved reading about your year. After meeting you and now reading this, I felt a stronger connection. So thank your giving me your time. I loved getting to know you a bit more. <3
    Hugs!
    Parul Thakur recently posted…I am a busy manMy Profile

    • Sanch @ Sanch Writes
      5 January 2019 at 5:24 pm

      Aww thanks Parul for your kind words. I definitely feel a stronger connection after having met you and I’m so grateful for that!

  • Balaka Basu
    4 January 2019 at 5:06 pm

    I agree that if we use social media responsibly we can connect with like-minded people. I have made numerous friends online who understand me way better than my offline friends.

    • Sanch @ Sanch Writes
      5 January 2019 at 4:09 pm

      I so agree…I’ve found my tribe online even though I have really good offline friends too – I think they’re for different reasons/needs

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  • Anouradha Bakshi
    6 January 2019 at 2:27 pm

    What an amazing year you have had. Wish you and even more amazing 2019