With the year that is slowly but surely coming to an end, I have taken a moment to just sit back and ruminate on everything that has happened. In my nostalgia, I have come to the conclusion that this year was crazy. It has been a year of getting to know my limits – a year of figuring out when to start and when to stop pushing; when to run face-first into things and when to actually slow down and walk a little or maybe sit down.

Recently, while sitting on my balcony watching the cars drive by, my flatmate asked me a simple, yet valid question: If you had a chance, would you change anything this year? Now, the first thing that popped up in my head was the classic “No, everything that happened, good or bad, made me the woman I am today. “ But then I took a second, and said yes. Yes, there are lots of moments that I would have changed if I had the chance. And if you are sitting there with a big fat no as your answer, you are lying because no matter how strong you believe they made you, somewhere deep inside you wish that it didn’t have to be so hard.

The reality, unfortunately is, that we cannot change these hard moments. But we can think about how they have shaped us into the human beings that we are today. We can see the good in every difficulty and most of all, we can celebrate when it is over. Most life lessons are only learnt after the hard moments, which is why we go through them.

Going through many hard days this year, and thinking about them, I came to think about things that got me through those days. So, without any further ado, here’s a list of things that got me through hard days:

  1. Being around people who love me: I remember being in a really bad place in March this year, and what really got me through the day is love. You need to read this again: what got me through the day was love. Real love. Not the romcom kind of love. I’m talking about the Jesus kind of love. See, when we face difficulties, it gets hard to feel the love. We get so focused on praying until this season is over that we get burnt out and we’re sometimes left feeling unloved. By being around people who love us the way Jesus loves us, we will be reminded of how great He truly is and that He will come through for us. Having someone be the hands and feet of Jesus can sometimes be the right motivation to keep going another day.
  2. Adventures: this sounds much bigger than it actually was. By adventures I mean doing something different – something you won’t do every day. Go outside for lunch instead of eating in your office. Make time for different things.
  3. Treat yourself with kindness: I had to convince myself that this is my process and it looks different that anyone else’s. By this I don’t mean sit and be sad about what is happening; I’m talking about doing the best I can and not going overboard. This has required me to motivate myself a few times with quick pep talks in the mirror: “No, you do not need to do any better than you are doing right now. You are doing great”.
  4. Say it as if you mean it: Nobody wants to say that everything will be okay if you know things are not looking great right now. But, the Bible promises that there’s power in our words and we need to make use of this power and speak life over any situation. Good or bad. Proverbs 18:21 in the Bible says the tongue has the power of life and death.

Lastly, treat yourself to some funny videos online and find things that make you laugh! Sometimes it is just as simple as that.

I don’t know what you have been through this past year. If it has been one of those years, why don’t you write down the things that helped you through in the comment box below…

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