A new year is upon us and, for many, that means an optimistic fresh start as we jot down our resolutions and goals. It’s an opportunity to look back on what you’ve accomplished or, perhaps, what you let slip. The beginning of every year should be a time to reconnect with oneself and reflect. Take the time to embrace yourself and have a thoughtful conversation within.

Did I meet my previous goals? Why or why not?

What am I proud of?

What am I not so proud of, and why?

What mistakes did I make?

How can I learn from these mistakes and improve?

In what ways have I grown?

What can I do to continue that growth?

In what other ways do I want to grow, and how will I accomplish it?

What lessons did I learn?

When did I feel the happiest, and why?

When did I feel at my lowest, and why?

Am I putting in effort towards maintaining healthy relationships?

What can I do strengthen and deepen my existing relationships?

Am I taking care of myself (physically, mentally, emotionally)?

How can I improve on self-care (no matter how small)?

Obviously, these are not the only questions you can ask yourself, but it’s a solid place to dive in. By no means do you need to have all the answers now. The point is to open the door and make room for continued growth and improvement. It’s essential to congratulate yourself on the positive things you’ve achieved, but it is just as important to acknowledge the not-so-great experiences as well. When we look to the new year as a space for reinvention, oftentimes we want to forget all the bad things that happened to us and hope for an easy future. The way I see it, growth cannot happen without struggle and pain. Growth is dependent on us validating our temporary downfalls and learning from our mistakes so we can continue climbing our own personal mountains.

Reinvention doesn’t mean abandoning your past self. Reinvention is realizing that your present self is a culmination of the lessons you’ve learned and inherited from your past selves. Reinvention itself is growth. This new year, I hope you take time and make space to learn, grow, and reinvent yourself.

- Julia Eunji Choi -

- @chuliajoi -

Raylene Pereyra