10 Lessons I Learned From 2018

Here we are coming to the end of 2018, I am sure it has been a roller coaster of emotions, challenges, achievements, and opportunities for so many people. This year, by far, has been the best and worst year for me. I wouldn’t say that I felt my best during this year but so much have happened and a lot of waiting was done. This year my patience was tested to the limits and I am not a patient person by nature. I decided to write this article for the first time because I would like to help people out there to go through the year and remember the good and the bad and maybe my lessons will be a reminder for them. I will make it a habit to write this type of articles by the end of each year.
Every lesson I learned this year will help you with advice and guidance to make 2019 better. I almost gave up on so many things this year but the fact that I kept going made me reach the first step in achieving a long-awaited dream that will help me have a better future and opportunities in years to come.
Here are the lessons I learned from 2018:
1- Believe in yourself more In this year, I doubted myself in so many ways even though I was trying my best. The feeling of doubt haunted me for the past 364 days. The feeling will make you question yourself repeatedly and it will stop you from aspiring to the best version of you. My advice in order to overcome this feeling is to appreciate yourself and remind it of all the good qualities you have and the people who see so much in you. Remember that there are so many people out there who admire you and the work you do, they simply look up to you so see yourself the way they see you and embrace it.
2- Best opportunities come from the least expected places As some of you who have been reading my blog posts, you know that I have gotten the chance to start my journey as a master’s degree student in France. It is an opportunity I never thought I would get from the moment I received the admission letter from Sciences Po University. I never thought in a million year that I will go to France and study there. However, it has been a blessing so far and an experience I wouldn’t trade for anything. I am getting a chance to discover a new culture, society, language, and a totally new world. I am making my dream come true as a free soul that wants to discover this world and learn more.
3- Learn from your mistakes and forgive yourself I have made terrible mistakes this year that I am still trying to heal and forgive myself for them. The hardest part is forgiveness. I wake up every day trying to forget and move on but it is a nightmare that will haunt me for as long as I am in this life. I am maybe struggling now but I hope anyone out there who has made a mistake that they forgive themselves before asking for forgiveness from anyone. Sometimes, we don’t realize that we choose to make a mistake and it is a risk. Mistakes can come in different types, they can come in people, school choices, places, relationships, friendships, anything! We are not robots and even robots have a certain percentage of error that can occur so it is part of the human nature to make mistakes but most importantly is to realize your mistakes and learn from them rather than regret because regret will only make it worse.
4- Time can ease the pain but it will not heal it Time, time, time! We face so many unpleasant experiences and we think that we wouldn’t be able to move on and heal. I am not going to lie and use the common saying “time heals everything” because it really doesn’t. it is not going to heal losing a loved one, it will just ease it and you will cope but you will always be affected by that experience even if it doesn’t show. However, my advice is to embrace time and let it ease whatever pain you are going through. 
5- Never settle for less than what you truly deserve This sentence can be applied to anything. If you are working and you are doing great but you are not appreciated then stand up for yourself and ask for what you deserve or leave. I can totally understand that some circumstances force you to put up with certain things just because you need it but even though, don’t let anything or anyone give you anything less than what you really deserve.
6- Learn to say NO I am by nature a very considerate person and saying no isn’t in my list of everyday terms. I tend to say yes even when I don’t want to and that cost me so much time, effort, and also stress. I found myself overworking and doing other people's job when I could’ve just said no. I found myself disrespected and taken advantage of because of that one yes. People will take advantage of you easily, you’ll feel disrespected at times so this year I decided to start saying more NO and it worked like magic. People began to listen and respect what I say. I was in charge of what I wanted to do and that was totally okay. I discovered that with every yes I said, I was hurting myself more and by saying no, I gained back confidence in myself and I began to do more ME rather than others because no one will care about you more than you. Saying NO saved so much time, respect, effort and this is the best advice I can give to you this year.
7- Stay away from toxic people Trust me, not everyone in this life wishes you great things and some will try to bring you down in every way possible because they have low self-esteem and they like to make others feel bad and insecure in order to feel good about themselves. You deserve better and it is okay to remove toxic people out of your life even if you’ve known them for so long. What really matters is you and if they care for you no matter how long you have known each other; they wouldn’t try to make you feel bad or any less but actions show so much and words hurt like hell. Surround yourself with positive and loving people because they will always try to help you see yourself from a different lens.
8- Not all risks are worth it Risks are part of our daily life. We come across them at work, school, home, friends, you know with anything and everything. I am an extremely cautious person! I wouldn’t risk anything before understanding every detail carefully so I know what I am about to do. This year I decided to take more risks and see how it will go and I was disappointed in ways I cannot put words to describe. It was just ugly and it led to terrible things that caused major harm. I wouldn’t say that people should just stop taking them but seriously, you can feel how bad it will get even before taking it. Think wisely and consider many factors before taking that step because it will cost you a fortune!
9- Stop creating a perfect image for people I have this habit of idealizing people right before getting to know them and I sometimes put too much effort to know and understand them that reality hits really hard and I end up shocked with what they truly are. Therefore, my advice to you is to stop having expectations for people and leave things normal. Don’t give so much so you don’t end up getting nothing.
10- Social Media is TOXIC This year, social media have put its toll on me by all means. I became a person with temper and I get provocative by upsetting and ignorant comments and I began to reply and speak up my mere opinion. This made me put a lot of effort and it became personal. Especially, in recent years, as I began to blog again, I need social media to share my content and receive feedback so whenever I feel like abandoning social media or to try social media detox for a while, I find myself dropping the idea. However, I am seriously considering the detox because social media can be addictive and toxic and it affects people on so many levels. Try to be moderate and don’t let it ruin you and affect how you live or even affect your mindset.

These are my lessons for 2018, I hope they helped you out and that maybe you consider some of them as a resolution for 2019. I wish you all a wonderful year full of surprises and success. If you relate with any of these lessons, let me know in the comment section which one you relate to the most.