My 2016, A Look Back

Is it healthy and useful to make New Year’s resolutions each year? If you’re like me, you make them every year with hopes of making positive changes in the new year. We are few short weeks away from 2017, so let’s look at my resolutions going into the 2016 (no particular order).

Make more money.

Live a healthier life style by eating clean and working out.

Get married.

Take more classes to increase my knowledge of Islam.

Work on my entrepreneur pursuits.

Save money.

Reduce my debt.

Start a blog.

As I look back I have successfully accomplished some of the things off my 2016 list. I started in a new department in January that came with a $5000 a year increase, but I also became a certified CPR/AED/Basic First Aid trainer and was given the opportunity to instruct some CPR classes while picking up additional facilitating jobs which increased my yearly income even more.
I stayed on track with eating healthy and to going to gym consistently. However, I fell short and did not accomplish getting married and I failed to take more classes. Despite those shortcomings, I was able to start Classy Creations with my sister and celebrated a successful Mother’s Day sale in which we surpassed our own expectations. In addition to Classy Creations I gave birth to “iMi,” my beaded jewelry line.

I surprised myself by saving a few hundred dollars in 2016. This is something I have struggled to do in past years living paycheck to paycheck, but to my biggest disappointment I increased my overall debt. Finally, I can happily say with great courage I started my blog, “Somethingcalledmylife.”

Some might say I had a busy year. I took the time to clean out my friendship closet (see my blog on Friends and Friendships). I accepted and grieved a love that consumed me for many years, and I opened my heart to feel love for another man. I continue to be stuck in the same cycle of being unlucky at love, but I can honestly say to myself that I have been “damaged,” like the TLC song. They say acknowledgement is the first step before making positive change.

I was blessed to go on two great vacations. I explored the "pura vida," or pure life of Costa Rica in April and I visited the beautiful beaches of Jamaica in August. I have a new appreciation for solo travel (see my blog, My Solo Trip to Jamaica) and yes, I do enjoy my own company. I went home to upstate New York a few times. During one of my home visits I was gifted with closure from a past relationship that has shaped me into the woman I am today; the good and the bad.

In 2016, I stepped into my own charity work by launching my first annual Ramadan lunch drive. I personally handed out a total of 77 lunches during my lunch hour in downtown Manhattan to the homeless and those in need the entire month of Ramadan. I must thank my son because not only did he help me make the sandwiches, but he also prepared the lunches sometimes for me when I was too tired and exhausted from the long fasting hours, Tawarih prayers, and work. He was a tremendous help and I’m not sure he recognized his own charitable contribution.

As I looked back on a glimpse of my 2016, making resolutions each year is a great way to reflect on how far I have grown as a woman, mother, sister, aunt, daughter, and a friend. I find great pleasure in identifying the areas in my life that I need to improve upon or change. I welcome the process knowing that every day I should be striving to be a better version of myself than I was the day before. Although I did not accomplish all the things I planned to with my New Years resolutions for 2016, I challenge myself to do better in 2017. The future looks bright and I can’t wait to see what 2017 has in store. Make those New Year’s resolutions, I know I am.