Reflecting on 2015

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Happy New Year!

Reflecting on this past year, I’ve really found I’ve learned some very important lessons about myself and about life.

A lot has happened this year. A lot of tragedy that has really put things in perspective.

In life, everyone makes mistakes that change them. Sometimes in a minor way and often in a major way. These things can be good, though they are often not. As a writer, I often try to infuse my stories with subtle (though sometimes obvious) lessons. Most authors do. Mostly, they are lessons that we as people have faced and have overcome, though not always.

There has been a lot in my life that I have learned the hard way. I thought I’d share these with you. If you are anything like me, you probably won’t listen. And you will make these same mistakes. I’m not writing these as a cautionary tale (though heed the warning as you wish), but rather as a branch. For those who have made similar mistakes and just feel alone.

Not all of these are serious, but some are.

Put your phone away

phone

Our world is changing. Everyone has a cellphone in their hands. Now I have a wonderful love/hate relationship with my phone. Lotta love and a lot of hate. When I am with the people I care about, I try to set aside my phone. To a lot of people, being on your phone when you are supposed to be hanging out with them is rude and disrespectful. I feel that way. You can not keep your attention on the person you are speaking too if you are also texting or even reading this blog post. Show someone you respect them by putting the phone down when you are with them. You will be able to interact with them better and have an even better relationship.

The people who really love you are the ones who show up when it really counts

Hugging

To often, I think we make this mistake of allowing people into our lives that don’t necessarily deserve to be there. It’s okay to have friends. But invest time in the people who are going to show up for you. Invest in the people who remember your birthday. Invest in the people who cry with you through the hard times and stand strong with you when you need them. These are the people that love you and you should surround yourself with. Try not to put to much time into people that aren’t willing to put the same amount of effort into you.

Don’t assume people know how you feel about them.

I love you

Some times I forget to take the time to thank people or tell them that I love them. While my feelings might seem obvious to me, the person I love might not realize my affection. Take a moment, everyday, to tell the people in your heart that you love them. With everything that is going on in the world, tell the people that you love how you feel about them. Not just with words, but with your actions. Say thank you to the people that help you.

It is the little things that can change someone’s life

nice

This is something that I truly believe in. It’s something that we hear a lot, but I can’t help but want to emphasize it. Smile at people. Complement someone random on something awesome. We don’t know what others are going through. I can’t tell you how often I’ve been having a really terrible day and I get some random compliment that completely changes my mood.

Be nice to the people in customer service positions

Customer service

I feel the need to say this, because I have worked in retail. I have been on the receiving end of some really horrible attitudes. I have taken more than my fair share of verbal abuse by people who don’t know me but feel like everything wrong in their life is my fault. Especially this time of year, don’t yell at people who are only trying to do their jobs. I have worked eight hour shifts before and it is hard to stay upbeat and positive after having people yell at you for several hours. I’m not saying that you have to be nice even when people have been rude to you. I’m just asking that you remember that the cashier you are dealing with is a person who has feelings, and who has probably been working for many hours. Be kind.

 

These are just a couple of things that looking back on my year I’ve noticed. Let me know what you think about my reflections or let express some of your own reflections.

-GW

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