2016 was a trying year for most of us to say the least, but I think we can all agree that like most years it’s had its ups and downs. For me from moments of sadness, to times of solitude that carried me to find lessons and growth on the other side. There were also great moments that moved fast but were existent nonetheless. Here are some things I learned in 2016 and hope to take with me into 2017.

Taking Care of the People you love is really important, but taking care of yourself must come first

I learned this year that I suffered from slight anxiety. It was something I would joke around with myself about in the past, but this year I just knew it was serious and to handle it. That required taking care of myself inside, something I still find very hard to do. A lot of my anxiety was stemming from my worrying about people who I love. I always had to be strong for other people and then when I was in a personal mess there wasn’t any energy room left to take care of myself or my own things. In 2016, I learned that there weren’t any excuses and I needed to take care of myself deeply in order to survive.

Sometimes you have to dig deep to heal

Another lesson I learned in the past year was that sometimes you don’t “feel” better because you haven’t really dealt with the root of the problem yet. Trust your intuition about this. The things we try to be “strong” about are normally the areas in our lives that need the most attention or work on. Sometimes this is uncomfortable and we don’t want to do the work because of the pain it could bring up. I know this well. I am still dealing with this very much.

Follow your intuition in relationships

In relationships love, family, or friendships make sure you aren’t the only one doing the work or caring too much. If you feel that you are, have a talk with your loved one and let them know how you’re feeling. For me, I am always caring really deeply about the people in my life. Sometimes shit happens. Sometimes you get in fights, sometimes one person has higher expectations than the other. My personal belief is to always come from a place of love and honesty and to do my best. You can’t choose your family, but with friendships and relationships the best and hardest lesson I have learned all at once is to let go of the relationships where I am not getting what I am putting in. I’d rather spend my energy and time on people who are deserving of my attention.

It’s perfectly fine to take a break

I think a lot of us are programmed to think we have to be or appear perfect all the time, and that simply isn’t true! Social media isn’t going anywhere, and to be honest it isn’t the real life. It’s perfectly fine and human to have bad days and take time for you. I am a deep introvert with fine taste (haha) aka picky and selective. I am easily drained from being falsely social, it’s my least favorite thing in the world to have to socialize with people of not like vibes. But it’s part of my job sometimes. After I do it, I come home feeling super drained and just need time alone. TAKE THE TIME. I’d like to think the time and work we put into ourselves makes us more patient, tolerant and happier all around leading us to create a chain movement of good energy.

Invest IN yourself INSIDE, make good new habits

This year I started meditating and manifesting and tapping deeper into my intuitive, spiritual side. Sure sometimes I am a skeptic and wonder if all this hippie shit really works, but the truth is it has worked for me. I enjoy learning about different spiritualities inside and out and kind of pulling from the core of all of them. Feeling at peace and at ease with your own soul is a journey that will take place throughout your entire life, but investing in yourself spiritually is one of the most important places to start no matter what you believe in. This year on the blog I hope to expand and share with you all the things that I have learned over the past year.

Ignore bullies and haters-be nice, be yourself, stay calm

I wish I could tell you everyone will like you, and everyone will cheer you on, and that being a good person is enough. But it’s not. People are jealous, and sometimes immature enough to act on those urges. After having chords ripped out of my platines during a big fashion week gig, and having more experienced female DJs hate on my skill level after only 3 years of DJing (being a truly skillful DJ will take years and years of practice and learning different techniques and I know that I am at the beginning of my journey) I must chalk it up to jealousy. And you know what? I am happy to, I am happy to be doing well enough to have these people in my life to push me to do better. I could cry (I did), or get vengeance by speaking badly about these girls but the truth is that their attitudes represent them just clearly the way they are- to people, to their friends, and more importantly to clients. I can’t stress this enough- ignore them. Cry at home if you have to, but always be professional, nice and stay out of drama unless it’s regarding your physical safety (then by all means do what you have to do, lol).

Last but not least, don’t become bitter because one door closes don’t give up the fight

I have to believe that everything happens for a reason, because history of my life tells me so. I am always asking the universe to yank things that are not for me out of my life and when it does suddenly I am hurt and sad about it. The big truth of life is that we all have a path and 9 out of 10 times it looks nothing like what we have planned for ourselves inside of our minds. Whether in romance, work, or family life don’t give up or become bitter because you’ve been handed a hard card. I am realizing this is something I have to do myself daily, but it’s easy to be like “fuck guys, I am focusing on work” after some asshole pisses you off, or “maybe I should just go back to school and get a regular job” after you’ve had two months of unlucky with bookings. We have to reverse our thinking. Sometimes these No’s are sweet Yes’s down the road. Sometimes the good guy that we were ignoring for the jerk is around the corner and that can become something. Sometimes we have 4 months of hard work and bookings ahead of us so in reality all that downtime made us work harder and spend our money wiser in the end. I am highly controlling of outcomes and can be quite ocd and hard on myself sometimes, but the pure facts are we are not control. We are only meant to follow the path.

One last thing- Tell People you love that you love them

Simple as that. Don’t waste a chance to be able to tell someone what they mean to you. Life is too short. Whether it’s friends, family or a loved one. Tell them. Sometimes you’ll hear it too and sometimes you need to. I suppose it’s the same for everyone.

photos/lighting: shannon kanhai @gojiburri
creative direction/styling: aurielle sayeh
wearing: adidas originals
special thanks to: @hotelvamsterdam

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