The Rise and Fall of 2018

I love to relish in that magical feeling that a new year brings.

I wanted to write this post as a commencement to the new year. To beckon it in with gumption but also I wanted to recognize this past year and bid it adieu with love.

2018, you were full of it.

In the beginning, I started the same way as this one. With a “Dry January.”

I found this campaign and I was excited about not consuming alcohol for a whole month. I wasn’t sure if I could accomplish it.

But I did and once that month was over, I learned how to keep a promise to myself. That is something I had hardly ever done in my whole entire 25 years of life.

It created a confidence that propelled me through the last semester of college.

It inspired me to reach for bigger, to expand my comfort zone.

As 2018 fell into spring, I fell into love.

I met someone who would completely change my world forever in so many beautiful ways. It was the scariest, most passionate, strong, completely encompassing, almost obsessive romance.

Spring of 2018 was bright. I traveled to Arizona to interview for my job and took care of my Nana after she had surgery on her heart.

May of 2018 would be where everything in my life would peak.

I graduated and spent a whole week in Washington with my family.

My relationship was strong, I had completed the graduation commencement speech and my heart was completely filled up with family and travel.

I moved in with friends for the summer to train at corporate before moving to the Arizona office. Sunshine filled the days and the wave of change filled my with positive energy.

This second half of 2018 was… to say the least challenging.

I’m not sure how to completely put this into words for how incredibly difficult life became but I’m going to try because it deserves to be acknowledged.

June began like a dream. I felt healthy and strong, ready to start my new career in sales.

Little did I know how much this career would change me in such a short amount of time.

It started with a %100 commitment including watching youtube videos, reading books, and reaching out to sales leaders to pick their brains.

Showing up to work early and staying late.

I intended to make a splash, to get noticed, and to rise fast.

When you give yourself over to something like that, success starts to happen. The only problem is all success comes at a cost if you don’t manage the other aspects of your life properly.

I threw myself into my job with little care to the other pillars in my life. Slowly I noticed hiccups in my lifestyle choices which lead to bumps in my relationship.

Work didn’t suffer but I was starting to feel things slip outside.

The combination of rejection in my sales calls and all of that time spent in the office came at a price.

There is no need for nitty details but I messed up, slipped off my course, and my world started crashing around me.

I had gone from the top of the totem pole to the bottom in one short month.

From knowing it all to knowing nothing and on top of all- I didn’t take care of my needs.

The consequences were dire.

My new career which was initially taking my to Arizona, changed course and I was asked to stay here in Minnesota. (Granted this one was out of my control, it still had a profound disappointing effect.)

My relationship started falling apart around me and it would take only a few short months before it completely ended.

My health took a hit because of what I was choosing to put or not put into my body.

Slowly the foundation that I had built during the first half of this year, literally crumbled from within.

Suffering and loneliness creeped into my life while my guard was down.

I looked into the mirror unsure of who I was becoming.

This wasn’t a one night thing, this was days of ignoring the warning signs and focusing only on my job. This is just not how humans are meant to live.

Suffering is a necessary evil.

So, I sat down with my pain because I NEEDED to understand it.

The two most important lessons I learned in 2018:

  1. Health is the foundation for daily success. Nutrition, exercise, self-talk, mind, body, spirit… etc. All of these things are so incredibly important for decision making and cognitive function. Take care with them, constantly learn and tweak your approach to your health. We all have a different formula for what works. Find that and you will be unstoppable.
  2. Protect what you love in your life. It is such a rare and beautiful gift to find someone who uniquely challenges you and lifts you up. This kind of connection needs fierce protecting and requires complete awareness. Especially if this love is in the form of a human; family, child, an organization of people, grandparents… please be aware of what is happening in your life that tests these waters and whatever you do, DO NOT take them for granted.

The fall of 2018 brought with it another new home in the city, a heart breaking split, and a loneliness I have never ever experienced.

I’m proud to say that I didn’t let my life completely fall down around me and that all that hard work I put into my job really truly paid off.

I hit every single monthly goal, I’ve won almost every monthly challenge earning prizes and extra cash.

I’ve been able to travel to visit clients and already have another trip planned in February.

I’m passionate about my career and I know that it will lead me to more successes in the future.

But what I know is that success in your career isn’t the one way ticket to happiness.

So in the midst of the personal heartbreak, when I sat down day after day to write down my shortcomings.

I recognized where I let things slip.

I wrote about my mistakes.

I wrote out all of the lies I told myself and all of the lies I told my partner.

I cried and poured my heart over the pages.

After I did this and after I truly felt the weight of responsibility for my current life standards, it felt pretty fucking empowering.

I’m not perfect. I mess up.

But I’ll tell you what. If I’m going to mess up you better believe I’m going to do everything I can in my absolute power to understand why.

You better believe that I’m going to give everything I have NOT to do it again.

And you better believe that knowing this and experiencing this is going to make 2019 the most expansive, deeply connected, richly experienced year of my life.

So here’s to 2018 filling us up with lessons.

Thank you for the heartache, so now I know how to protect my love.

Thank you for the loneliness, so now I know my true self best.

Thank you for the new environments, so now I know how to cultivate community where ever I am in the world.

Thank you for the chance to live another year better and stronger than the previous.

And thank YOU for reading and I hope your 2019 is absolutely everything you need it to be.

Remember, we are the creators of our lives.

Love and light,
Lilliana Lucinda

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