A shiny 2019

I’m not a fan of new year’s resolutions because I truly believe that change doesn’t have to happen on a yearly basis. Every day is an opportunity to change and try again. But for the last few years, choosing a word for the year has been a great learning school.


In 2017, I chose the word ‘give‘. My goal was to help charities or raise money, but life had another plan. I learned that giving also starts at home; that giving your loved ones your time and effort is something special (and priceless) words can’t adequately describe.


Then ‘focus‘ was the name of the game in 2018. I was thinking along the lines of working myself up in the company I worked for. Again, life had another plan. I had to put myself first and stepped away from that toxic environment. Through this, I rediscovered my passion for teaching while I continue my writing career. So I learned that adjusting your focus is much more important than ‘staying focused’.



Since I’ve embarked on my journey as an adult, I’ve made many mistakes and had a few failures. And nothing gets me down as much as feeling like a failure. Especially in the past year, I took failure very personal and the truth is, I put all the blame on myself. Even though a part of my brain reminds me that what happened was out of my control. I guess that’s the perk of living with anxiety.


After many quiet thoughts and a bag full of frustration, I’ve chosen the word ‘shine’ for 2019. Yes, I find the word very cheesy. But it’s time to work on how I treat myself.

shine _ ilka steyn

I give other people the benefit of the doubt because I know every story has three sides: your version of the truth, their version of the truth, and the actual truth. So why can’t I give myself the benefit of the doubt? I’m just as deserving… And as I was writing this, I thought, “Wow. That sounds selfish.”


Anyway, this year is about me. Yes, the ‘selfish’ me (or whatever society wants to call it) and that’s okay. I want to love myself more, support myself more, and believe in myself more. I tired of feeling sad because I’m mean to myself.


I don’t know how I’m going to do it yet, but I am. I’ll figure it out. All I know for now is that I keep telling myself in a witch-like voice while pointing my finger up in the air, “Shine, motherf#$%er. SHINE!”


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