2016 was an absolute shitstorm of a year. While it was not “the worst year ever” (I’d say 1939-1945 might be strong contenders?), there were definitely a lot of highs and lows. It was a bad year for the world; I think this conclusion has been drawn by most people. Without further ado, here are the things that 2016 taught me.
1) Sadness is inevitable, but it is pathetic.
This one is extremely exclusive to me, and is in no way discrediting or calling out everyone else when they are sad. I get sad a lot, not in a worrying way, but it is just regular and the reasoning is often irrational or petty. Everyone experiences sadness, mine is just very pathetic and when it comes I wallow in self-pity for way too long. This one is depressing, but this past year reminded me that feeling down about insignificant things is a waste of time.
2) It feels amazing to have fun.
One thing that I dislike about myself, and this may or may not stem from my self-pity problem, is that I am unreasonably uptight and overly analytical about things for someone of my age. I think about going somewhere and doing something then quickly talk myself out of it, deciding its best not to go. As a result of this, I miss/ have missed out on a lot of fun opportunities. In the second half of 2016 I made a conscious effort to attempt to kick this habit by jumping in blindly to things and saying yes. Although this habit is not extinct, its on the way out. I firmly believe that nothing compares to having amazing fun with the right people.
3) Preparation and planning is key.
Another thing I am not very consistent with is organisation and planning. I have lots of ideas and get inspired to do so many things, but I always never actually execute anything of worth. I found out this year that if I plan and prepare things, I can be successful. The secret to doing great things is having a clear plan and preparing well for it. When doing schoolwork, hobbies and tasks outside of school, and difficult challenges a good plan always helps you along. I even become paranoid sometimes and over-analyse a situation to figure out the best way to get to the desired outcome.
“By failing to prepare, you are preparing to fail” – Benjamin Franklin.
4) Friendships can come from unlikely places.
2016 has seen the biggest change for me so far in terms of friendship (for more context see my Old Friend post). Basically my old best mate has become a dick and started thinking he’s amazing, and I’ve started hanging about with new friends. Those friends I didn’t like at all previously, but now I get on really well with them, perhaps more so than my original friends. If you’d told me 2 years ago that I would fall into this friendship group, I definitely would be disbelieving. I learnt the lesson this year of how much people can change, whether it be for the better or for the worse.
5) Nothing is truly predictable.
This may be an obvious one, but it is something I realised was absolutely true. I suppose I mean this both generally and specifically, depending what you apply it to. For example, no-one could have anticipated the tragedies in 2016 (celebrity deaths, terrorism, hard-hitting news etc.). I also decided that no matter how much you try, different people will do unpredictable things. They will do great things and horrible things but they are just people trying to do what’s right for them. You are not truly in control of what happens to you in life, but you are in control of how you respond to those situations.
6) Girls are confusing and they don’t need to like you.
I learned this hard in 2016. I had two girls who I was interested in (at different times) and none of the two of them were interested in anything more than friendship. At first I was bitter and self-pitying (see the running theme here? 2016 the year of self-pity), but then I admitted that they were under no obligation to like me. Albeit they were both confusing, but I’ve reached a place now where I’m not looking for anyone just now. I don’t care about girls at the minute and I just want to have a good time.
7) Good music helps most things.
Good music helps. Good music helps. Good music helps. Good music helps. Good music helps. Good music helps. Good music helps. Good music helps. Good music helps.
Seriously. Listen to positive, cool music. It makes a lot of things better and puts you in a surprisingly good mood. Music was a massive part of my year.
“Music is my religion.” – Jimi Hendrix
8) Spontaneity and new experiences are liberating.
Kind of contradictory to my preparation and planning point, but a bit of spontaneity is always welcome. It is always great to do something for the hell of it without prior planning. I realised this year just how much I enjoy doing new things and broadening my cultural and life knowledge. It is so interesting doing new things and finding out what you like and dislike in life.
9) Humans are incredible.
While humans have performed questionable acts recently, I like to believe its out-shone by the good humans do. I have enjoyed this year especially for talking to people and learning their thoughts on things and hearing what they’ve been through. Idk man, humans are pretty cool.
10) Time is precious and swift.
And lastly, this year has reminded me how fast time goes by and that I should never waste it. The year hasn’t been all bad and I’m looking forward to the coming years. Here’s to a less shitty 2017! And let’s see where I’m at this time next year; a lot can happen in a year.