Hi Everyone! Alicia here. Happy New Year! Can I still say that?! Haha well, I am. Happy 2019 to all of you. I hope it has been treating you well and that you thoroughly enjoyed the holiday times with close ones. I want to share some fun information with you so let’s get to it!
So, I have a confession. I’m afraid to try and experience new things, sometimes; well, a lot of times. I cannot tell you how many movies, shows, concerts, restaurants, trips, you name it that I missed! Places and events that I’ve wanted to see and explore or do and yet, I ended up being too afraid or shy to do it; either because I would have to do it on my own, or because I didn’t know if a friend would want to join me.
I would say the majority of reasons for why I ended up not following through with itwas because it would mean pulling myselfmeout of my comfort zone. Not because it was something crazy or extreme, I simply didn’t know what to expect or what the outcome would be and that thought alone paralyzed me and forced me to reconsider.
2018 Goals & Outcomes
One of my goals for 2018 was to ignore those fears and to go out and to embark on new adventures; whether someone wanted to tag along or not! Either way, I was making it happen.
So I wanted to quickly reflect on 3moments last year that pushed my comfort zone to new levels:
Starting my blog, Friendships in the City
I tell you I was so nervous to start this blog. I wasn’t sure if anyone would find the topic of making friends as adults interesting, relevant or valuable. What could I offer that was different? I was so pleased to learn that the topic of making truly lasting and meaningful relationships and friendships is totally applicable and honestly it’s needed in today’s time.
What I learned:
- That I LOVE talking about the topic of friendship and community-building.
- That I have met some wonderful and very welcoming people through the blog.
- That people have shared that they find it valuable.
- That it will take time and commitment but do press on because you never know who you could impact in a positive way.
Speaking at my first conference
I had a friend reach out to me who said I should consider submitting a talk for a day-long conference on User experience design based in London, Ontario.
I was both scared and excited by this idea. Scared because I’ve never spoken at a conference before (and the time slots for these talks were an hour long!) also, I wasn’t sure if I had enough industry experience or expertise to really be able to speak on the subject. Basically, a lot of unnecessary self-doubts.
Well, I prepared like crazy and practiced beforehand but I am happy to say that the talk was a SUCCESS! The feedback was positive and the audience found it to be very helpful and insightful.
What I learned:
- Speaking in front of audience is a bit nerve-racking and fun.
- People are very nice and are not there to be critical.
- We are capable of so much more than we give ourselves credit.
- It does not matter how much experience you think you do or do not have, you are uniquely you and have a different perspective to bring to the table so acknowledge that, and ROCK THAT!
Going on my first solo trip
My family & friends will tell you that I have been talking about visiting Montreal for a LONG time. I have traveled pretty close to the city a few times but for some reason never really had a chance to explore it or even see it up close. So I decided that the conference was my chance to finally see.
Friends, that trip was everything I had hoped it would be and more. The city is beautiful and there is so much to see and do. Everyone was super friendly and were happy to practice French with me. And then I met some great people at a language meetup while there and showed me some of the big city sites. We’re still in touch too!
What I learned:
- That I can navigate an unknown city and its public transport better than expected
- That my French is sufficient enough that ordering food & drink is possible and people aren’t going to be crazy grammar police on you.
- That people are fair and more approachable than I expected, and they are happy to answer questions and provide directions.
- That they really are that nice!
- That I’m a serious history buff (but that I already knew ;-))
- That I want to go back and for longer!
There you have it, I hope this post was encouraging for you. It can be so scary to step into the unknown but it feels good to know that friends can be there to stand by you and push you through and cheer for you and stand by you. None of those moments would have been possible without having friends in my life who truly cared and were excited about these big new adventures.
I have decided to make my goal for 2019 a continuation of 2018’s. I am going to continue to push myself and my comfort zones into the uncharted territories that life brings and to take chance to explore the fun and exciting opportunities that come with it.
Some goals are:
- To continue growing the content of Friendships in the City and to post more regularly. I have SO MANY interesting topics that I would like to share and talk about with you this year and I cannot wait for all of our discussions.
- To host some meetups on Friendship
- To speak at another event
- To rock an outfit that I might not usually wear
- To study a language and then use it in practice in that country
My challenge to you today, is to make your own list! What is something that you have always wanted to do but for some reason you stopped yourself? Reply back to me on this post with your list!
Together we can encourage each other to see these goals through.
Keep being your great self, friends and I’ll talk to you soon!