life :: back to it

{Fix your thoughts on what is true and good and right. Think about things that are pure and lovely, and dwell on the fine, good things in others.} Philippians 4:8 TLB.


Whatever “it” may be to you, it’s that time of the year again. The one I like to think of as Marmite you either love it, or you hate it (what a cliché).

Offers are on everywhere; stationery is going cheap and both excitement and nerves are building for the upcoming academic year. Just another one. *eye roll* It’s never going to end my friends, I can promise you that.

No matter how hard we try to resist, we are all guilty of latching onto the hype of “new year, new me”. AND IT’S NOT EVEN 2017 YET!!!

It’s practically forced down every pupil/student’s throat. You receive your results over the summer and have about 4 weeks to gather your thoughts before jetting off to some new institution or an upgrade of high school (i.e. sixth form). And I warn you (with blessings of happiness), it doesn’t slow down. You join the fast-paced life that is hidden away from you at high school. Looking back, everyday seemed to drag, it never really got any more interesting. And of course, what was most interesting was usually some kind of school drama, and not part of the designed curriculum. Despite what sounds like complaints, I more often than not enjoyed school. I should rephrase that. I loved school. That doesn’t mean to say and shouldn’t imply that I was always the highest achiever, or the favourite of the class. But I was always genuinely grateful to be there, and receive such a good education. Anyone who slates teachers (and we’ve all done it at some point) needs to realise how much you actually owe to them. Yes they are not your brain, nor your talents, but they see where your strengths lie and if you’re lucky, will foster them until you bloom.

In many ways it’s scary, and no doubt you’ll find yourself crying down the phone to your mum, filling your emptiness with on-offer chocolate from your local corner shop. Those moments are going to come no matter how hard you try to avoid them, it’s best to just embrace them.

Everyone, including me, will tell you “you’ll be okay”. And as frustrating as those words are to hear when you genuinely believe you’re out of your mind, they are true. “Everything sounds fine” is something I was told at the start of university (by a counsellor). I was that frustrated to be told that as I had nearly cried on the woman, that I walked out of the room and decided enough was enough. I picked myself back up. And that’s something that seems so difficult at the time, especially if you’re a pretty “soft” person. I know I am.

In those moments of distress, I find it best to turn to whatever comforts me. I either crawl into bed with a book, or my bible, or my Pinterest account and get pinning some motivational quotes. I’m an absolute sucker for any kind of “life quote” but who cares? If mass pinning nice words makes you happy for a few minutes, then do so. If you want an insight into what I pin, have a little gander here. (Warning: 122 boards of goodness. Perhaps repetitiveness. Mass cheese.)

The only way to truly make it through this transition time of the year is to embrace it, get involved in it and find some excitement in it. Look ahead to the positives and what you want to achieve. The uncertain moments in between your “good” days will not be “bad”, they will just be different. And in these moments, you may even find the opportunities you thought you would never have access to.

I took a leap of faith, or what felt like one at the time, applying for Fashion Editor for my university newspaper (I know I’ve talked about this before). Of course as much as I am excited, I’m nervous about how to get it going, and how to “make my mark”, but I know I can only get there if I start focusing more, and worrying less.

As a Christian I believe I am called to be IN the world, but not OF it. A handy bible passage to illustrate this is Romans 12:2 NIV:

Don’t conform to the patterns of this world, but be transformed by the renewing of your mind. Then you will be able to test and approve what God’s will is – his good, pleasing and perfect will.

Life is no easier for Christians; we still make mistakes, experience guilt on a daily basis, and fall foul of our tempers. But that is okay, and all together if you can still be courageous, strong and compassionate then you’re onto a winner. I wasn’t planning on turning this into a Christian post, but hey ho maybe that’s my calling…I really don’t know.

So back to it is upon us. And for you, whatever it may be I hope you attack it with excitement, courage, bravery and strength. And you make your year what it is already set out to be: yours.

 

Love,

Anna

 

P.S. Don’t listen to anyone who ever tells you you’re “bad” at something. Criticism should only be constructive and helpful, if it belittles you, it isn’t meant for you.

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