For as long as I can remember, I always put other people’s feelings before my own.
I would pick up shifts I did not necessarily want to work because someone asked me and there had to be a reason why they wanted off. I would go to birthday parties of people who could never be bothered to celebrate mine because I did not want to be spiteful or hurt their feelings. I would say things did not bother me when they absolutely did.
I would accept the bare minimum in almost every facet of life just to get something rather than hold out for a better offer or ask for what I wanted in the first place.
I hoped to make 2019 the year all of that changed, and as these final hours wind down I’ve thought about the last 365 days of my life. Now that it is over, I can say with confidence that 2019 was an incredibly selfish year… and I don’t regret it.
I had felt unappreciated and trapped at my job of nearly a decade, so I left.
I had felt disrespected and used while working my side job in a boy band, so I left.
I had longed to hone my leadership skills, so I changed careers and accepted a job which would allow to do just that.
And, of course, I asked the love of my life to marry me.
For the first time in my life, I focused solely on myself and my desires. I stopped bending over backwards for people who did not appreciate or respect me. I stopped doing things I didn’t really want to do. I focused on what I wanted, planned out how I would get it, then worked to make it happen.
There are some people in my life I went weeks or months without seeing during this time. Some of them I still have not seen in weeks or months, and it sucks. If any of them are reading this, I hope they know they are still in my heart.
My only real resolution for 2020 is to do a better job of keeping in touch with my friends and loved ones. This year was all about me; next year is all about them.
Sometimes there are moments in life where you really need to close yourself off from the world around you and just focus on yourself, and I don’t necessarily think that is a bad thing. Having selfish periods of time to work towards your personal growth does not make you a selfish person, and I think that is a misconception some of us struggle with. I know I did.
Self love is an important part of life, because it helps affect everything you do. You can’t be the best employee possible if you hate your job, or your boss, or your co-workers; you can’t be the best friend possible if you’re jealous of those around you; you can’t be the best partner possible if you feel inadequate about what you bring to the table.
So while taking certain times out of your life to be selfish is, well, selfish, doing it for the right reasons allows you to become a better person for those around you. To me, that’s not selfish at all.
Anyway, cheers to the end of 2019. It was a hell of a year. To say it was life-changing would be an understatement. I’m excited for what the future holds in 2020, and I have a strong feeling it will be just as good — if not better — than this year.
I wish health, happiness and success for all of you in this new year.