Today marks one year since my blog went live! I can’t believe so much time has passed. A year ago, blogging was just something I might want to try but didn’t think I had anything super interesting to talk about. Then I went through a horrible break up and needed something positive to throw all my energy into. I wanted to create a space where other people like me could come and commiserate over the roller coaster that is learning how to be a real adult. So Cocktails with Kiera was born!
So much has happened in the past year…. My weight has gone from up and down and up and down again. I made some real grown up friends. I reluctantly stepped back into dating and surprisingly found someone I really connect with. I graduated with my Master in Public Health. I lost someone close to me. I have been all over the place this year but I have learned so much about myself and I am truly better for it.
One of the biggest lessons I learned and one I work on maintaining every day is putting myself first. Those close to me know that I will do absolutely anything I can for them. If you need me, I will do everything in my power to be there for you, no matter the cost to myself. In reading Oprah’s What I Know for Sure, I gained some perspective on this matter. In her book Oprah talks about how she used to always say yes and ended up in a lot of situations with a lot of commitments that she didn’t necessarily feel that great about. As she described her predicament, I realized that I had fallen into the same habit. For some reason I recently stopped saying no to doing things I really didn’t want to do. It started to extend past those close to me and it started to be too much. I recognize that I was searching for approval that I did not need, fearing that my “no” response would change others’ opinion of me. This was probably in part to a severely bruised ego post-break-up but it needed to change immediately.
This quote perfectly describes the predicament I had put myself in. I was starting to feel unfulfilled within myself because I was giving too much of myself away. Oprah’s advice was to consciously choose things that feel right in every atom of your being. If it feels even a little bit off, don’t do it.
I started being more conscious about my decision making. Little by little I started to notice the difference. I really dove in during the Lenten season and completely gave up doing anything for anyone that didn’t feel right to me. I got asked to join a committee to help plan a social for a fraternity conference that was coming to town…I politely declined. Friends and associates asked me to accompany them to various events and gatherings across the city…I stayed home with a good book unless it was something I was really interested in. At the end of those 40 days, I felt so much better. I did things for myself because I wanted to and the nice things I did for other people did not feel obligatory.
I am still in that mode. Consciously putting myself first no matter what. I encourage each of you to do the same. Make a conscious effort to put yourself, your health, your mental well-being above all else. You will find that when you are functioning as your best self and stay in tune to your needs, life gets just a little bit easier.
I have learned a lot over the past year and writing this blog has only helped me to persevere through it all. Here’s to many more years of learning and navigating our twenties together while enjoying some cocktails along the way!