Pick yourself up

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The holiday season has come and gone and a new year is upon us.

As December came to a close, I thought, “2016 wasn’t so bad.” I sat back for a moment and remembered the ups and downs; the times I felt lost, helpless and confused- but also how I felt when I picked myself back up.

This wasn’t a typical holiday season for me. I spent December 1st flying to Boston, my first week in Massachusetts interviewing for jobs, and my second week starting a new full-time role. While other people were busy preparing for Christmas, I was simply trying to get my life in order. Buying gifts, making holiday plans and traveling were the last things on my mind.

“I chose this life,” I kept reminding myself.

Moving to Boston was a gift in itself; after a hectic year I was ready for a fresh start. I’ve never been conventional, either. Traditions always gave me anxiety and social pressures made me avoid celebrations altogether. It’s not rare for me to spend the holidays away from my family… over the past eight years I’ve lived all over the country, far from the old traditions I grew up with.

That’s kind of how my whole life has been- an adventure and often a mystery. I’ve been searching for stability for the past few years, hoping to find my “niche” and place that feels like home. I have continually sought out people, places and things; but after things haven’t turn out how I’d hoped, I’ve learned to go with the flow.

I’ve also learned to be my own best friend.

As I am learning to be more mindful, I’ve come to realize the importance in staying positive and knowing that everything happens for a reason. Although I was lonely during the holidays, I used my free time to write and do the things I enjoyed. That time was used to make me stronger, prepare for the new year and learn that my own company is enough. Even after all the cross-country moves and times I have “started over,” it still takes time to accept that I won’t have a community overnight.

No matter what challenges you face, pick yourself back up and know that the best is yet to com. Even though I don’t know what 2017 has in store, I can’t wait to find out.

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Comforts of the City

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Whenever I feel lonely, I go exploring. Wandering the streets, window shopping, picking up coffee at a local cafe, sitting by the water, learning new neighborhoods, and taking pictures of the beauty around me.

I never felt lonely in New York City; there was always someone around me, something was always open, and the trains ran 24/7. I never felt lost and I never felt scared.

Ironic, considering many people feel NYC is a big, scary place. It was quite the contrary for me. Despite challenges, I was content being alone in such a large city. Although it’s just a quick train or drive away, my life in Boston seems worlds apart. It’s probably a good thing.

Over the long weekend I decided to do all of the things I loved about New York- in Boston. Similar to my life in SF and NYC, I decided to hop on the T and see where it took me. I got off the Orange Line at Back Bay, curious to check out the shops, architecture, parks and people.

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The beauty of Boston is phenomenal– and if it weren’t so cold, I would be out and about all of the time! It’s a very small and walkable city with hidden gems everywhere… I just have yet to find them.

Although I’ve been feeling alone, this is an exciting time- I have the whole city at my fingertips. It may still be a stranger to me now, but soon I will find my own comforts in Boston.

While I may miss New York today, it will always be there- and I have a whole new city to fall in love with.

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Change doesn’t scare me- complacency does.

Today marks one week in Boston.

Last week I packed my luggage, got on a plane and headed to yet another city I had to learn. Challenged accepted.

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Unlike other moves in the past, I had this one laid out to a tee. I listed my objectives, dates and goals leading up to the move, reviewed them daily and most important of all- took action.

Since graduating college in 2007 I’ve lived in Metro Detroit, San Francisco, Austin, New York, and even did a stint in Charlotte. Smaller towns were never on my radar, and living in a rut was never an option.

If you don’t like something, change it.

Easier said than done, right? Perhaps. Since arriving last Thursday I spent the weekend in Amesbury, explored the coast, tried beach pizza, went on several interviews, learned how to manuever the T and bus lines (every city is essentially the same, except Boston subway tracks are CLEAN), decorated my little Airbnb for Christmas, and even purchased some Red Sox gear (sorry to my Giants- I’m still loyal to you).

It’s been wonderful.

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I’m not sure what feels different about this move. There are the obvious reasons- I have a clear head, a plan, support, experience and above all, fearlessness. When I first moved to San Francisco at age 23 I lived on blind optimism and nativity. I suppose the same holds true for every other life-changing event… all except this one.

I’ve grown up and I’ve learned to take action. I’ve worked many types of jobs in several industries, experienced a variety of living situations, weathered different climates and began to learn the importance of staying in the moment. It has always been easy for me to get ahead of myself in life, but staying mindful is imperative in this journey.

Life isn’t always glamourous and the grind is never easy, but this time I intend to live one day at a time, keep a positive attitude and find beauty in each day.

I am starting to love you, Boston. Without getting ahead of myself, I hope we stay together for a very long time.

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