8 Lessons I Learned In 2017

8 Lessons I Learned In 2017

The choice is yours, choose wisely.
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While the year 2017 was not the greatest, it taught me many great lessons about friends, family, and just life in general.

1. Not everyone deserves your love.

If 2017 taught me anything, it was that you get to choose who you surround yourself with for a reason. If someone, whether it be a friend, a family member, anyone really, is not treating you the way you feel that you deserve to be treated, then stop keeping them in your life. There are billions of people in the world. There will always be someone else that WILL treat you with the respect and decency that you deserve.

2. Family is not always blood.

Growing up, people have been taught that family is who you are related to by blood. That’s changing in this day and age. Some children are adopted and loved by their adopted parents more than they ever could be by their birth parents. That’s family. Some children surround themselves with friends who will love them more than their abusive parents at home. That’s family. Family can be chosen based on the way people love you and treat you.

3. You don’t have to be the best.

There will always be someone that will outshine you in school, extracurriculars, hobbies, etc. That’s okay. Don’t keep pushing to be better than these people because you will only crush your self-esteem in the end. Do your best at whatever it is because your best is enough.

4. Fear is easily overcome.

So many times fear has taken over our lives and prevented us from doing things that could’ve changed us for the better. The thing people don’t realize is that this can easily be changed. Surround yourself with people and things that make you stronger than whatever fear it is you are facing then allow them to help you go out and face it. Letting fear control you will hold you back from so many amazing opportunities. Build up your strength and then push yourself to the next level.

5. Self-love isn’t selfish.

There will be times when you are not feeling sufficient amounts of love from friends and family and you will need to find a way to build yourself back up. This is the time to stop and love yourself for a change. Look in the mirror and realize how incredible it is that you are pushing through this immense challenge we call life and be proud of yourself; not everyone made it this far. Give yourself the rest that you deserve and stop pushing yourself around at the will of other people. At the end of the day, this can only make you stronger.

6. Rise above.

People are not always as good as they may seem and can change from good to bad in the blink of an eye. There will always be pain and hurt in this world. The best way to get through this is to rise above it all. Take everything that is handed at you and overcome it. Don’t get angry, insulted, or even heartbroken by the little things that get thrown at you in your day to day life. When you realize that it’s not too difficult to push past it all, you’ll be living a much better life.

7. Love with all of your heart.

While it’s true, not everyone deserves your love, the people who do deserve it, deserve it wholeheartedly. Show them the kind of love that is unconditional and devoted. Love them so much that your heart actually aches with passion. Love them even when they upset you. Love them when they’re so hurt that they cannot fathom showing you the same type of love. The people that deserve your love should get all of it, not just one tiny bit. The people that truly deserve your love will love you as hard as they can in return.

8. Choose happiness.

Happiness is a choice. You cannot really be happy until you choose to be. No one can help you feel happiness, nor can anyone take it away from you. Happiness will not just magically come to you, it can only come from your heart when you decide to let it. The choice is yours, choose wisely.

2018 is a brand new year and a chance to start anew. Take these simple lessons that I learned in 2017 and allow them to help you become a better you in the New Year.

Cover Image Credit: Pixabay

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An Open Letter To Every Athlete On Their Senior Night

"Don't cry because it's over, smile because it happened"
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Dear Seniors,

For many of you, today was a day that you had always wished would come sooner, only to find that when the day arrived wishing for it to come was the last thing you truly ever wanted.

When stepping out onto the court or field or rink for the very last time today, take a moment to stand quietly and look out into the crowd, look to your teammates, to your coaches, and to your fellow seniors, and remember the way this made you feel, as this is a feeling you will remember for the rest of your life.

Today and every day moving forward will be filled with memories that will last you a lifetime.

Today is a day bound to be filled with endless amounts of tears, both happy and sad, so let it be. Let these feelings consume you, and serve as a reminder that no matter where you may go in life from this very moment, that you have made a family of your own. That you have changed the lives of others by just simply being in theirs.

That all the little things were really the big things, like the nicknames you had for your teammates, or your favorite song to sing in the locker room before a game. These things that never seemed to mean anything at the time are all the things that you will carry with you when you leave this place you call your home away from home.

On this day, years from now you will not remember the wins and losses of each season, but the people that took this journey with you and never let you look back.

The teammates that picked you up and carried you through the good and the bad of each day. The ones that taught you to see the good in all things. The ones who never let you live down the stupid things you did, mainly because they did them with you. And even the ones that you couldn't stand 99.9% percent of the time.

You will remember the coaches that pushed you and never let you give up.

You will remember all the times they yelled and made you run until you couldn't walk. The times that they depended on you to be the leaders we all knew you could be. But more than any of that, you will remember the opportunity they gave you to play the game you learned to love, the game that changed your life, the game that taught you more lessons about life, love and dedication than anything ever could.

On this day I ask you to remember a few things. I ask that you remember that the impact you have had on your teammates' lives is unmeasurable, never doubt that. The time you have spent dedicated to this sport that you love was never, EVER a waste of your time, because you are a better person because of it.

I ask you to remember that although the sadness you may hold in your heart overwhelms you, that you have found a part of you along this journey that will help you follow your dreams, whatever they may be.

Play your heart out today, and leave knowing you've given it all you've got just one last time. Leave knowing that you are one of the lucky ones. Remember the love, remember the defeat, remember the laughs and the tears, remember the battle wounds. Remember this feeling, always and forever.

Best of Luck,

Your Biggest Fan

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21 Things To Do In October For The Girl Who Doesn't Like Halloween

And not a single one of them will jump out at you and say "BOO," I promise.

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I get it, Halloween is fun. It's probably the only day of the year when it is not only acceptable but expected, to dress up in a ridiculous costume and eat candy all night long. I really don't have anything personal against Halloween, I've just never been the biggest fan of it.

BUT that doesn't mean I don't still love fall and October and all of the wonderful things it has to offer. I've listed here some things that you can do this October that don't involve any spooks or scares!

1. Dress up in your coziest fall clothes.

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Even though it's probably still 85 degrees outside.

2. Just go ahead and start listening to Christmas music now.

Tbh I don't normally support premature Christmas jams, but it's not like there's any good Halloween music out there.

3. Go to the movies... and not watch a scary movie.

Yes, they do in fact exist.

4. Visit a pumpkin patch.

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At the very least, get a pic for the Insta.

5. Drink a pumpkin spice latte.

6. Like literally just sit in a coffee shop and appreciate the fact that fall is finally here.

Extra points if you're by a window and can watch the leaves fall while listening to folk music.

7. Bake something yummy.

Burn one of your Bath and Body Works candles while you're at it for extra yummy smells!

8. Watch playoff baseball.

9. Watch Halloweentown (AKA the only Halloween movie you'll ever get me to watch).

10.  Smell every fall-scented candle at Bath and Body Works.

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11. Find a fair or fall festival near you.

Think corn dogs and ferris wheels. The more fried food, the better!

12. Use the money you aren't spending on Halloween costumes to buy more pumpkins.

13. Have a (non-scary) movie marathon at home!

Harry Potter, Back to the Future, Twilight, the possibilities are endless! Grab your coziest blankets and your best friends and get ready for a fall day well spent.

14. Go to a corn maze.

A not scary one, of course.

15.  Stock up on Halloween candy for yourself.

16.  Go to a Farmer's market.

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This is a great thing to do more often than just October, but it's a proven fact that everything is just more exciting when pumpkins are involved.

17.  Watch Friday Night Lights.

The show, the movie, or an actual Friday night football game. Any and all are acceptable.

18.  Go thrift shopping to add to your fall sweater collection.

Or just raid your grandpa's closet.

19.  Make one of those cute autumn wreaths for your front door.

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Or another fun craft to show just how much you love fall.

20.  Skip out on the Halloween parties and drink more pumpkin spice lattes instead.

21.  Enjoy October for what it is - truly one of the best times of the year.

If you are one of those people who considers Halloween a part of "The Most Wonderful Time of the Year," I hope you don't take this article personally. Maybe you never realized how truly versatile this time of year is!

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