New Year, Same Me

New Year, Same Me

A new year and another chance to get it right.

"New year, new me." It's the universal saying that is all over social media, and it's the saying that everyone convinces themselves that they're going to live by for a whole entire year. But most of the time, two weeks later people forget their resolutions, and they end up being the same person they always have.

2016 was a year of many things for me. Many ups, many downs, many trials, many triumphs, many moments of happiness, and many moments of sadness. But this year, I want to become a better me. I don't understand why people want to change something handcrafted by God into something that society claims is better. So that being said, I don't want to become a new me, just an improved me.

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I want to become a healthier me.

People who have the classic New Years Resolution to lose weight have good intentions I'm sure, but if you're looking to become a "New you," then your concerns should be somewhere far beyond weight loss. I already know that saying I'm going to go to the gym every day isn't going to happen, so I want to change smaller and more feasible aspects of my life (like walking more and eating less) so that I can feel better about being me.

I want to pray more and worry less.

We all worry. We can't stop ourselves from worrying, and I am constantly worried about the little things in my life. But every time I worry, I need to pray. This one is going to take some practice, but praying for peace in a time of worry can never be bad.

I want to be a better friend.

I can't speak for everyone, but my friends are my rocks. They are who I call when I don't know what to do in a situation, need someone to go to Walmart with me, or just want to hang out and watch Netflix all day. This year, I want to make sure my friends know that they are loved, they are kind, and they are awesome. I can't wait to make sweet memories with my best friends in 2017 that I will remember forever.

I want to make a difference.

If everyone strived to make a small difference in someone's life, the world would be a better place. A simple text to someone you haven't talked to in a while can no doubt make somebody's day. Even something as simple as a smile to a person walking by could make someone's day better. You never know what is going on in those face's lives. If I could make a difference in even one person's life in 2017, I will consider it a successful year.

I want to be more spontaneous.

The best trips are the ones that are unplanned and with your favorite people. Whether it be to the nearest big town to shop a little or a weekend trip to the beach, I want to have times I will remember forever with the people I will never forget.

I want to let go and let God.

My biggest goal for this year is to let go of things. Let go negative people, negative situations, anger, anxiety, and negative thoughts. There are so many things that I think I can fix on my own, but at the end of the day God's plan is the plan that plays out- not mine. I let so many negative things get to me, and this year I just don't have time for that. I know that letting go of things isn't easy, but that is the first step to change.

I want to do a lot of things this year. I am not going to be a saint by the end of the year, but I am praying that I am going to be a better me.

Here's to 2017!

Cover Image Credit: Teresa Spealman

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To The Senior Graduating High School In A Month

"What feels like the end, is often the beginning."

It wasn’t too long ago that I was in your shoes. Just a little over a year ago, I was the senior that had a month left. One month left in the hometown that I grew up in. One month left with the friends that I didn’t want to leave. One month left in the place that I had called “my school” for the past four years. You are probably thinking the same things I thought whenever it came down to only 30 days left. You’re probably scared, nervous, worried, or anxious. Maybe you’re like me and are dying to get out of high school, ready to start a new chapter. Or maybe you aren’t so ready yet. Maybe you’re wishing for a little more time.

As scary as it is, this month you have left will fly by. You’ll blink and you’ll be standing in your cap and gown, waiting for your name to be called to receive your diploma. You’ll look back on your last four years at your school and wonder why time went by so fast. It’ll be bittersweet. However, trust me when I say that you have so much to look forward to. You are about to begin taking the steps to build your future. You are going to grow and learn so much more than any high school class could teach you. You are going to meet amazing people and accomplish amazing things. So, as scared as you might be, I encourage you to take that first step out of your comfort zone and face this world head on. Chase your dreams and work towards your goals. You are smart. You are brave. You are capable of achieving amazing things. All your life, the lessons you have learned have prepared you for this point in your life. You are more than ready.

There are times when you will feel alone, scared, or confused. There are times when it won’t always be easy. But those are the times when you will shine the most because I know you will work through whatever problems you may face. Don’t think of the bad times as a terrible thing. Use them all as learning experiences. As author Joshua Marine once said, “Challenges are what make life interesting and overcoming them is what makes life meaningful.”

You might think that this is the end. However, it’s not. This is only the beginning. Trust me when I say that the adventures and opportunities you are about to face are nothing compared to high school. Whether you are going to college, going to work, or something else, this is the beginning of your journey called life. It will be exciting, it will be terrifying, but it will all be worth it.

So, as you walk out of your high school for the very last time, I encourage you to take a deep breath. Relax. You’ll always have the memories to look back on from high school. But your time is now, it begins today. Embrace it.

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10 Pieces Of Advice From My Parents That Have Helped Me Survive This Thing Called Life

I don't like admitting that they're right, but they've helped me through more than they'll ever know.


As I've entered my 20s and have made it halfway through college, I've learned that life can be hard and challenging at times. Like many kids, when I was growing up, I could care less about what my parent's advice or opinions were. Nine times out of ten, I would do the complete opposite of what they said. Once I got older and actually started listening to their advice and put it into perceptive, I learned that they're right more often than I'd like to admit.

1. Don't take things for granted

leonardo dicaprio

I've learned to cherish what I have because I might not always have it. It's easy to take life itself and many things it involves for granted. They've taught me to take a step back from this crazy life sometimes and be grateful for all that I have.

2. Don't be afraid to put your heart on your sleeve


My parents have taught me that if you feel something, don't be afraid to say it or embrace it. If you love someone, then tell them. Don't be afraid to put your heart out there just because you might get hurt.

3. Be vulnerable

risk taking

In life, in relationships, in your work. Take risks, get shot down, and then try again. Being vulnerable is scary yet so powerful.

4. You can never have too many shoes


Otherwise known as it's okay to treat yourself. Life is hard, so take care of you. If that means going on a shopping spree every once in a while, then so be it.

5. You're going to be okay

finding nemo

Whatever it is you're going through, you're going through it and you're going to come out on the other side. It may seem horrible now, but you'll learn from it and be okay in the end.

6. You have to have friends in life


It's important to have people to lean on, especially on your bad days, and to celebrate with on your good ones. You can't just have you or a significant other to rely on.

7. Never be afraid to share your opinion

laverne cox

Don't be afraid to put your thoughts and opinions out there because they might be wrong. They could have a huge impact on someone or something.

8. Don't stress over things you have no control over

don't stress

Everyone is on their own path, which means everything will work out the way it's supposed to, even if it doesn't make sense right now. Again, you're going to be okay.

9. Happy, healthy, wealthy, wise


My dad always says if you tell yourself every day that you're happy with yourself or your life, you're healthy and strong, you're wealthy in love and surrounded by great people, and you're knowledgable or wise, then you can achieve anything in life.

10.  S*** or get off the pot

pitch perfect

My all-time favorite piece of advice. Making decisions can be hard and scary, especially if the outcome could be getting hurt in the end. So, you either make a decision and roll with it no matter the outcome or you walk away.

Thanks, mom and dad for always being a phone call away when I need it! Just know that your advice and words of wisdom don't go unnoticed. For others, your parents have been on this planet much longer than you have and most likely experienced the same situations that you're dealing with. They don't have all the answers, but they are there to help.

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