When I turned 23 I counted down to my birthday with “Lessons Learned”. Last year, I created a list of things I wish I had known before I turning twenty-five. This year, I’m going back to the original idea and sharing the lessons I learned during and after my quarter life crisis. Back in 2012 when I created the “Lessons Learned from 23” I dedicated one of the first posts to “Risk”, (I even unarchived it for you all). That year I had uprooted my life and quite fragile self and secretly moved to New York City. At that point of time, it was the biggest risk I had ever taken.
This year I think I can add to this topic.
Reading that post from two years ago made me realize that I had barely scratched the surface of taking a few leaps of faith. The risk of moving to New York, though it was extremely scary and completely outside of the 5-year-plan I had set for myself, was the opening to bigger acts of faith. You see, my greatest fears with moving to New York was if I’d be able to continue my cookie cutter life: having a job that still made a decent amount of money, having friends to lounge around with, and if I could make New York work for me as New England had. But I now understand my move was much much more than that. I can now confidently say that the biggest risk I think anyone can take is taking a risk on love, themselves and/or their potential.
This year I took a risk on all three. I’m not talking ‘romantic love’, but the art of loving myself. In February, I decided to put Yetti first, something I have always kind of struggled to do. I upped my days in therapy. I removed all things that didn’t make feel good about myself and as Tyece would say, I tried to meet myself and my issues with grace. My friend Maki had always told me that I had issues with setting boundaries for myself, but after a weekend of HBO “Girls,”, the Lego Movie and an open conversation over Olive Garden’s breadsticks and guacamole, she helped me realized that it was much much more than that. I had issues with being good to me period. Borderline self sabotaging myself with the company I kept. And though they weren’t terrible people at all, they just were not what I needed to grow in a positive direction. I also had a mindset that attacked my entire being. And so with the removal of all things that no longer served me positively, I took a risk of losing friendships, losing connections, and possibly my sanity, and I aimed to find a happier Yetti.
And it worked.
Somedays I have bad days, but they do not cripple me the way they used to. Somedays I can not explain the bullshit that spins out of control in my life, but I still think life is beautiful. Somedays I miss the people I’m no longer close friends with, but it’s life, people grow out of each other and I deserve the absolute best. And then there are somedays where I shock myself with my positive thoughts because… this wasn’t always the person I was. I love those kind of days.
And with being able to take this kind of risk on myself, it has enabled me to take a risk on my potential. I’ve always worked on Certified 10, I’ve spoken about it as my baby but I’ve never really had the courage to move it beyond just the planning stage. Being that I am now the sole owner of the organization to be, that also means being the only person to carry the stress and all the other possibilities that will arise. The creation of Certified 10 isn’t as cookie cutter as creating a product, or a t-shirt line or an app. This is bringing awareness of how important it is to foster one’s self-confidence and have a healthy sense of self-worth within our environment. It’s centered on something most of my peers do not understand or care for. And it’s something that can only thrive on faith and a true understanding, because the results and the eventual impact isn’t something you can necessarily hold in your hand.
With knowing all of this, and tip-toeing around my fear of failure, I’m taking a risk on not only my potential but the potential of this movement. Certified 10’s first event will be held on January 24th, 2015 in Midtown, New York City.
One day. 4 workshops. Breakfast and lunch provided. Two licensed therapists. Hands on activities. 40 women. And a whole lot of self-lovin’.
This is the type of risk I’m taking. Thank you Year 25.