Goodbye to the old me. Goodbye 2016.

She was Unsure. Insecure. Not Reassured. The opposite of everything people assumed her to be.

I just want to say that I’m glad you’re gone. I know that might sound harsh, and please don’t take this the wrong way because I am really proud of you. I’m just glad that you seem like a different person to me now. You grew up. You changed. You found yourself again. I hope that you’re proud of who you have become because I finally am.

I’m really glad that I can look in the mirror and smile now. I know that you were never unhappy with yourself, but you weren’t really happy with yourself either. I’m glad that I can see more than the breakouts and split ends when I stand in front of the mirror in the mornings. I’m glad that I can look at myself and see someone smart, funny, caring, and genuine.

You are independent. You are beautiful. You are worthy. I know you never felt that you were — I remember that feeling. People care about you, so don’t worry about where you are now. You will have a few friends that you can talk to for hours, who will stick with you after anything. At the end of the day, you don’t have to worry. Take each day by stride. Live. Laugh. Love. When it’s hard to get up, get up anyway. It’s a new day for you to conquer the world and show what you are made of. When everything around you seems to be falling apart, laugh because that’s the best type of medicine for those who feel broken—you aren’t. When those who try to hurt you do, show them love. Give them the grace that they may not deserve; it may just shock them.

Recently I have learned a lot… I learned that things don’t always turn out the way you planned, or the way you think they should. And I’ve learned that there are things that go wrong that don’t always get fixed or get put back together the way they were before. I’ve learned that some broken things stay broken, and I’ve learned that you can get through bad times and keep looking for better ones, as long as you have people who love you.

I know that in life we do things. Some we wish we had never done. Some we wish we could replay a million times in our heads. But they all make us who we are. And in the end they shape every detail about us. If we were to reverse any of them we wouldn’t be the person we are today. So JUST LIVE. Make mistakes. Have wonderful memories. But never ever second guess who you are, where you have been, and most importantly where it is you are going.

I am beautifully bruised, scarred, and a much better version of myself. So my friend, I hope you understand I had to let go of a huge part of myself, but that was only to let a better part in. You will be missed, and I will always remember the person I used to be.

But still, good riddance, old me.


How to find strength within yourself

Finding strength within yourself can increase your positive feelings of self-worth about life and the people around you. It can give you the motivation you need to finish a project at work, help a friend in need or promote balance in your own life. Inner strength can be challenging to find, especially during dark times in your life. However, you can find motivation in the world around you, channeling those experiences into a strength you can use to motivate yourself.

Here are a few steps that I have come up with in order to help you find your inner strength.

1.Determine any factors holding you back from being a stronger person. Create a list of character flaws you observe in yourself. Ask friends and family for input if you are unable to come up with this list. Lack of trust, indecisiveness and low self-esteem are a few characteristics that can lead to lack of strength.

2. Create a list of character strengths to build upon and increase your inner strength. Acknowledging your existing positive traits can build up your self-esteem, a key component to an increase in inner strength.

3.Develop a personal mantra for everyday use to increase your self-worth and strength within yourself. Say, “I am strong, I can succeed” or “Everyday is a new opportunity for success” to motivate yourself to find and use your inner strength. Write the mantra down and hang it several places around your house, such as your bathroom mirror or refrigerator door, to see before leaving the house for the day.

4. Recall times in your life when you felt or acted strongly. Remembering times when you used inner strength in the past can help you rekindle those feelings in your current self. For example, a friend may have turned to you in crisis and you helped her through. This is indicative of someone finding and using strength within.

5. Strive to emulate people who exercise inner strength on a daily basis. Talk to friends and family whom you admire and ask how they channel inner strength. Use their guidance as a model for you own life.

6. Try yoga or other meditative exercise practices. Yoga combines deep breathing, stretching and physical poses to achieve flexibility, balance and inner strength. Practice yoga or meditation on a daily basis to continue channeling your strength within. (Or even something as simple as writing your thoughts down in a quiet place)