Today, January 29, is my birthday. This year, I’m turning 28 years old and there is a lot changing in my life all at once it seems. Every year, I take some time to do birthday reflections and consider how far I’ve progressed in the past year. I note things I accomplished, things I enjoyed, things I’d do again (and things I wouldn’t), and how the year went. It is also a moment to reflect on what I’d like to do in the year to come.
My Birthday Reflections
This year, my birthday reflections looked a little different. I’m sure many people looked back on the year 2020 and thought, “worst year ever.” In many ways, that was true for me. There was a lot of stress. I didn’t meet all of my goals for the year. But, like many people, I kept going and kept things afloat (somehow). In 2020, I took better care of my health and took more time for self-care as well. That is something I’m proud of.
Financially, 2020 was not the greatest. My husband lost his job due to pandemic woes. There were several large emergencies that crippled us. Family emergencies seemed to pop up every other month and then we rounded out the year with a four-hour move back to North Carolina.
When it comes down to it, 2020 ended in a way that helped improve our lives in a big way. I hope to continue growing positively as a family this year as well.
Why You Shouldn’t Compare Yourself to Others
It is truly a mistake to measure your success against others your age. There are a lot of factors that impact how you have progressed through life. For instance, you may have had to battle serious financial struggles or mental health concerns. Not everyone your age has had to deal with those things.
On the same note, not everyone has the same long-term goals as you do. A friend of mine was speaking about graduating with her doctorate soon. She’s been working nonstop to achieve that goal but feels behind when she compares herself to her peers. Many of us have graduated and gone on to pursue careers six years ago. However, none of us will have the honor of being called a doctor. While we’ve been working to rent apartments and pay off student loans, she’s been making her dreams come true.
What I’m trying to say is if birthday reflections or self-reflection, in general, are part of your life, consider your own personal goals rather than what your peers are doing. True happiness will stem from achieving those personal goals.
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Amanda Blankenship is the Director of Social Media for District Media. In addition to her duties handling everything social media, she frequently writes for a handful of blogs and loves to share her own personal finance story with others. When she isn’t typing away at her desk, she enjoys spending time with her daughter, husband, and dog. During her free time, you’re likely to find her with her nose in a book, hiking, or playing RPG video games.
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