Lifestyle Motivation

17 Things I Have Learnt in 2017

17 things I've learnt in 2017

Can you believe there is only one week until Christmas?! I feels like only yesterday that 2017 has just begun and now it is nearly the end… Time seems to fly as you get older!

With 2017 coming to an end, I figured that it would be a good time to reflect over the past year. Self-reflection is important for acknowledging your achievements, realising what didn’t go as planned, and helping you set defined goals for the new year. Without further ado, let’s get into the 17 things I’ve learnt in 2017.

1. It is okay to fail but you have to learn from the experience and do better.

Throughout high school and my first three years of university, I had never failed a subject or assessment. That was until my fourth year where I failed a subject. I was having a horrible semester. My mental health wasn’t that good and my motivation levels were to the ground. I haven’t told anyone (besides my partner) that I failed a subject because I feel like I would disappoint people as I was always getting good grades.

You know what? It is okay to fail. You can learn from the experience and improve yourself next time.

This is what I did this year. I retook the subject that I failed, studied hard, and passed with distinction.

2. It is okay to have a few friends.

I am an introvert and I find it hard to keep up with people. This wasn’t always the case. Back in high school, I had lots of friends and was an ongoing person, until something called bullying happened but we’ll leave that for another post.

Since then, I have always been anxious at the fact that I had a few friends. I don’t have a close girlfriend that I could share everything with. I didn’t have a group of friends that I could go to brunch every Sunday with.

This year I realised that it is okay to have a few friends. Although I may not have lots of friends, I have a few good friends that I enjoy spending my time with. I even have a lot of online friends that I can turn to as well (love you all!).

3. Investing in travelling is so important.

Hiking in Queenstown. Things I've learnt in 2017.

Travel has always been my love. Visiting new places, experiencing a change in scenery, and meeting new people are some of the perks of travelling. This year I visited New Zealand during the winter as an early graduation present to myself. It was amazing! Read more about my New Zealand trip here and here!

You don’t have to be super rich to afford to travel. Travelling is an investment. If you want to travel, save up and go for it! Nothing is stopping you.

Experiences are worth a lot more than materialism. Click To Tweet

4. Take charge of your finances.

If you ask me five years ago what budgeting was, I would have no clue. I was a big spender and didn’t put anything to my savings. Over the years, I have ditched my materialism and became interested in personal finance.

This year, I opened two bank accounts on top of my normal account where money comes in and out. One account is for my short-term savings for travel, phone, laptop etc. The other account is my long-term savings with a high interest rate so every month, I will get interest. I will regularly transfer money from my normal account to my short-term and long-term savings rather than keeping it all in one account. Instead of seeing a lump sum of money in one account that I can spend, I spread it out to my savings accounts to save money, and budget on what I have left to live on.

5. Let go of the people who take you for granted.

Even if you like/love/miss that person, if they don’t appreciate you, let them go. There is no point in having a one way relationship. Remember no matter how much it hurts, it will get better.

6. I am super bad at anything numerical.

That is super ironic considering that I majored in accounting… You have no idea how many tears have been shed throughout my degree. Note to self: try to avoid anything numerical for my sake and the sake of others. 

7. If you are feeling down, always talk to someone about it.

When I feel down or doubt myself, I talk to someone. Whether my partner or online friend(s), talking to someone about my problem(s) makes me see the issue clearer. I have been someone who keeps their problems to themselves. It was a bad habit because I bottle up all my feelings and when triggered, I will explode. This year, I learnt to open up. I am still improving myself on opening up. Small steps…

8. Once you use a planner, there’s no going back. #plannerlife

Seriously, what is going to make you more organised than a planner? Purchasing a planner is one of the best decisions ever. Not only does it make me more organised, it helps me get my entire life together. I was a little apprehensive that I wasn’t going to write in my planner after the initial planner hype but I really got into it and made myself use it daily.

I already bought my 2018 planner so I am ready to tackle the year. Have you got your planner sorted?

Clean, organised office desk inspiration

9. Don’t underestimate the power of dry shampoo.

Dry shampoo has saved me so many times this year from being late. There’s no chance I am going out that door with greasy hair so I thank the dry shampoo gods for creating this magical product.

10. Always have a phone case on your phone.

Just get a phone case. You don’t want a cracked screen and fork out unnecessary $$$ for screen replacement.

11. Social media is a great place to meet supportive and kind people.

I have met more supportive and kind people on social media than in person. It is amazing how the internet connects different people from different parts of the world. I wouldn’t have it any other way!

12. It is okay to not know what you want to do as a career path.

I finished my last semester recently and am currently awaiting graduation day in May 2018 (so long away!). Now I am trying to figure out what I want to do as my career path. I am currently working on my pet accessories business, Healthy Nibbles, and doing some freelance work on the side as well as this blog. I know I will still continue doing what I do now, but I am feeling the pressure to get a job in my field of study. Despite not knowing what to do career-wise, it isn’t the end of the world! I will continue to do what I do now and be open to the opportunities that lies ahead.

13. Keeping a travel funds jar.

I hate carrying loose change in my wallet. Not only does it make it bulky, it is so heavy. Instead of lugging around my coins, I place them in a travel funds jar to help save for my upcoming travels. You don’t need to specifically have a travel funds jar, you could have a car savings jar, a make up funds jar, anything you want to save for!

14. Blogging is a real job. It is fun and hard work. Don’t underestimate bloggers.

There has been so much talk about blogging not being a ‘real job’. It is a real job and bloggers work very hard. Having a blog means that you are an author, a social media manager, a graphic designer, and so many other roles than I can’t even count with my two hands. Blogging is a tough business but it is rewarding.

To the next blogger you meet, encourage and motivate them for their hard work. The blogging community is a supportive group, and you shouldn’t see another blogger as competition. Love and support each other!

15. Going out by yourself isn’t all that bad.

I used to hate going to the mall by myself but recently, I started to go out by myself. Actually, I was forced to because my partner has a full-time job and was working that day. I am so grateful that I did it. It wasn’t all that bad. I actually enjoyed the quality time I had with myself and even ate lunch by myself! I am definitely going to be having lots of dates with myself in the future.

16. I enjoy photography, and am becoming more confident being in front of the camera.

I like being behind the camera capturing memorable moments. This year, I am learning to become more confident being the subject of the photograph. I want to put more of my face on my blog/social media so this is a plus!

17. Acne does not define who you are. No one really cares about it except you.

I have suffered from acne since I was 15. It has really cleared up this year so I am happy with that. Before I used to be so self-conscious about my acne and would refuse to go out. Even with make up, it felt bumpy and I hated it. Now my face is smooth and all I am battling now is the occasional spot here and there, and acne scars.

If you are suffering from acne, remember that you aren’t the only person in the world that is suffering from it. There are so many acne-sufferers that are self-conscious about their skin. You are the harshest critic about your skin and no one is really judging you for it. If they are, they are bad human beings so don’t mind them.

What life lessons have you have learnt in 2017?

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  • Katelyn McCullough

    Love love these. So many things I can relate to, and babe you are not alone. I personally love doing things by myself, because sometimes the only friend is yourself and being comfortable with who you are. So proud of you for sharing. xo

    • Stephanie Foo

      Thank you so much, Katelyn! I’m glad that I’m not the only one that loves doing things by myself xx

  • Two things I totally agree with you on here is focusing on traveling and being ok with few friends. I have struggled with that this year and it is tough. I always had so many people in my circle but as I got older and trimmed down a bit, it got a little lonely. But I now know that’s ok.

    • Stephanie Foo

      Yes! I used to be so down about having few friends, especially as I get older and you lose a lot of friends but now I finally understand that it is okay. So glad you learnt this too!

  • Rawlings

    I learnt that the right people can move you forward and make you a better person. I also learn to buy into investments and invest in myself too.

    • Stephanie Foo

      Thank you sharing your life lessons of 2017! Very inspirational.

  • Chloe

    So proud of you!! I’m so glad to have met you this year and to call you my friend! I literally wish i could comment on everything you’ve said! These are all so positive and reassuring. Learning and coming back after failure is something I’ve also had to deal with this year and I feel it has made me a stronger person. Always here to talk if you need! Lots of love xxx

    • Stephanie Foo

      Aww!! I’m also so glad that you are my friend! I am so glad that you powered through after failure 🙂 Thank you for stopping by and leaving such a lovely comment! Made my day <3 xx

  • Ashley Strain

    It appears that you had a busy year. In 2017 I learned that sometimes it’s better to cut ties with toxic people. I will have a better 2018 because of it!

    • Stephanie Foo

      Yes! Totally agree with you! Ain’t nobody got time for negativity. Only positive vibes going forward!