What 2014 taught me

Oh, hello. It's a new year so I've changed the font. Is that okay? I hope so. 12 Months ago I was miserable, studying for my AS Levels, trying to complete lots and lots of coursework to horrid deadlines and just wanting the days to go faster and faster until my time at college finished. I thought I wanted to go to University but really I just didn't. After months of what felt like torture and discomfort in college, my AS exams were over and I decided to drop out of college. I thought that in September I would apply for a place at The Juice Academy to do a Social Media Apprenticeship (that meant working towards a qualification in a workplace earning real ££££ - just what I wanted). After putting all of my anxiety behind me I managed to "wow" The Juice Academy and the employers at the boot camp and got myself a place on the course. 

Although managing to do that was a great aspect of my year, there has also been many negative aspects of the past 12 months too that have really changed me as a person for the better and I wanted to share some of the things that I have learnt, how they have helped me and how they have changed my lifestyle. 

1) Follow your heart, not what everybody else tells you
Around 9 months ago I realised I wasn't happy being at college. I wasn't comfortable and I didn't want to do what I had gone out to do anymore. I decided to take it upon myself to make the decision to leave and find an apprenticeship in Social Media. After discussing it with close family, the majority tried to steer me away from that route and tried to pressure me into staying at college for another year and going to University. For a few moments they kind of convinced me that I would be better off doing that but then I realised something - they didn't have the agony of being consistently miserable, crying constantly from stress and feeling extremely anxious every time I went to college. That's why I ended up going for the apprenticeship I wanted, achieved what I wanted by getting a place and although I may not be as happy as I anticipated I would be, it has really taught me a lot and it is one of the best decisions I've made so far. 

2) You're not here to please others.
For years, being a teenage girl, I felt it was necessary to look a certain way in public. I always assumed that everywhere I walked people would be judging me. That's probably quite true, with the mentality of a lot of people in my area and the heartlessness that is in their brains they probably do judge. But I really don't care anymore. I've grown the confidence to go out on a Saturday in my local town centre with no make up. That gives a lot of benefits you know, clearer skin because you've given it some room to breathe, money being saved because you use less make up - I don't know why I didn't try it sooner! I now also wear my glasses in public which is pretty mad for me. It's a lot better being able to see in public and I have no idea why I didn't try it sooner. 

3) If you have money to spend, spend it on something that makes you happy.
After getting my first job and finally having money to spend I've been umming and arring over saving or spending. I do save, don't get me wrong, but sometimes if I have the extra cash I do purchase something that will make me happy, a new lipstick, a book or more recently I bought a Breville Blend Active to start making smoothies and juices. I am all for being happy in a moment and more recently I haven't been too happy so now and again a new treat really does brighten up my day. Then again, I've learnt how to save pretty well this year and that's helped me be happier too. I've saved money for a trip to Brighton with Ellis for our anniversary which was probably my favourite part of the year. I'm currently saving for a holiday in February with Ellis and some of my family and that will make me happy too. Some of the bigger things do require saving but the torture of saving will have such a positive outcome that it's all worth it in the end. I also saved to buy my boyfriend and my family gifts for Christmas which made not only me, but them happy too and that's another thing that's important about money - it can be spent on others too. I surprised Ellis with a driving lessons gift card delivered to his door at New Year and he was over the moon. Money can buy happiness.

4) If you want to go somewhere, go.
Now that I'm earning money I can finally start visiting all the beautiful places that I've always wanted to go. Me and Ellis took a weekend break to Brighton in December for our two year anniversary and it was my favourite part of the year. I have always loved Brighton and it was so nice to enjoy it with my boyfriend. Next year we are off to Lanzarote in February, London to see the Foo Fighters in June and I hope to visit Dublin or Amsterdam later in the year. We will also hopefully visit Wales like we always do. There has also been talk of going to San Francisco maybe in 2016, which would be pretty much the cherry on the cake. I love just getting away from where I live to be honest. 

5) Nasty people are completely irrelevant
In high school and college people were cruel and people still are today but I don't take it to heart anymore. I don't react to any nastiness, I let people get on with it because at the end of the day why should I waste any of my time responding to hate from others. Let them spend minutes or hours of their life thinking or speaking about you rather than waste your time on irrelevant people. The only people you need are the nice ones. 

6) Being an adult doesn't mean you have to do adult things.
I turned 18 in October and I had been looking forward to it for a very long time but it is totally over-hyped. I don't even have I.D yet. I still look about 12, I don't thrive to go out drinking booze, I've still can't afford a tattoo and I still love Frozen. I feel completely the same. Nothing has changed except I have wasted £4 on the Irish Lottery. 

So there you have it, six things I learnt in 2014. I learnt quite a lot in 2014 that I'm still implementing right now but I feel these were the most important lessons. What did you learn last year?  How was your year? Mine was pretty rubbish but hey, ho - here's to the new year! Good luck to you all and I shall speak to you very soon (tomorrow- I have another blog post planned)! 

Lots of Love
Jen xo


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