2016 in review & welcoming 2017

2017 just kicked in (yes, in my book it’s still the beginning of the year until February 1st) and I cannot believe I have spent 1.5 year without posting anything! (and I realise how much the WordPress has changed since…) And I really enjoy writing again after such a long time, especially to appreciate the year behind me.

2016 was a tough year, filled with hard work and self-doubt &-examination as I was juggling with a full-time job and intensive studying (which is the main reason for my absence on this blog). I also got incredibly frustrated, disappointed, even outraged sometimes as some of my plans were not exactly going as planned or felt out of control. Lot of my mental energy went into thinking about what I want to get from life and what would be the most suitable path for me – both on professional and personal level.

I cannot say that I have a definite answer (after all it takes a lifetime to understand what one truly wants) but I am determined to change some aspects of my life ~ starting with how I spend my time throughout the year, how I balance work & my free time.

2016 also taught me how to persevere on a personal project while being patient, always see the silver lining and stay focused on my goal. I have put a lot of my time into work, and a bit less into pleasurable things. It can sounds like a source of frustration but I do not regret a minute of effort, especially as I value my free time even more now: being deprived of free time made me savour downtime even more: just sitting down on the sofa sipping my tea while reading a good book became exquisite!

I discovered that I had much more resistance than I thought, and I am proud to say that I completed all my accountancy exams in 2016.

Luckily all this didn’t keep me away from enjoying my life in London and abroad.

I slept a lot, ran a lot, equally laughed, celebrated, travelled to some lovely places.

I got the chance to discover the wonders of Cornwall with my family and my close friend, hiked the muddy paths of the Moors in Yorkshire in the mist, climbed the hilly streets of Bergen under the pouring rain, relaxed on the sun-kissed beaches in Crete, ate the best tapas in Sevilla with my dear friends, and chilled in my hometown in Provence (between two exam revisions).

Another “high” of 2016 was my trip in Cuba, which was filled with wonderful encounters, smiling faces, amazing landscapes and lots of laughter (not to mention unforgettable mojitos and grilled fish!). This trip was such a treat this autumn as I escaped the London weather after my exams.

[NB: I might dedicate it a separate post to my 2016 trips to revive the nice memories…]

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Museo della Revolucion, La Habana

I feel incredibly grateful that this year gave me the opportunity to learn, become stronger and maybe a bit wiser. The journey will continue in 2017 as I wish to:

  • be more present & serene – taking up my daily meditation: this is a big challenge for me: just to stop, take a break a focus on being instead of doing.
  • be healthier – i have starting cutting refined sugars and I cannot believe how hard it is and how addicted I am to my favourite treats. I have managed to cut down so far but regularly crave a chocolate bar (especially during these long winter evenings in London). The other challenge I signed up for is 1,000-miles run in 2017: I started a week ago, and I realise how far the 1,000mi are, but I enjoy pushing my limit a bit further every time i go out for a run.
  • travel more often: to spend time with family & friends and discover this world, one country at a time…

I purposely keep this list very short as I know the first two take time and dedication. As I know myself pretty well, I know setting too many goals feels overwhelming, especially as I already spend a lot of time reading, cooking at home, going to exhibitions, and drawing.

I hope 2017 will be filled with fulfilled, family time, great encounters, travels and lots of love.

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