Last Friday, I had to actually sing that song out loud to convince myself that the 30th was the last day of the month, June had indeed come to an end and we were getting into the second half of the year! You know the song I'm referring to right? "30 days hath September, April, June and November. All the rest have 31 except for February alone which has 28, or 29 days in each leap year!"
If you do not know that song, you have to let me know how you skipped ever learning of it in your childhood!
I think it's great to pause, take stock and reflect ever so often. Particularly at such a half year period. As they say: "If you do not know where you are going to, you would never get to your destination".
So I thought I'll do a bit of an introspection - albeit a rather public one that I can share with you. I had (and still have!) very high hopes for 2017!. And I must say it's been a pretty good year so far, even though it was such a busy one that has gone by so quickly! A lot of things may not have worked as planned, but I'm definitely incredibly thankful.
I'll do this recap using three blog posts which I had published at the start of the year. First is this one on 9 Areas of Your Life to Detox and Refresh. It was one of the first posts I wrote in 2017, and I highlighted all of the areas I think make us completely whole and we need to revisit frequently.
The second post was this 2016 Recap... & Hopes for 2017, where I highlighted a few straight forward goals relating to the above categories that i'd like to improve on. The third and final post was on Blogging in 2016, and 2017 Goals! - my blogging goals deserved a post on it own.
So now, let's see how it's all gone generally.
I thought the new year was a great time to re-evaluate our careers, where we are and where we want to go. Get started on any courses, finding new jobs (so I wrote this on 4 Practical Tips for Job Hunting) or just networking.
Personally, in March 2017, I finally qualified as a Corporate Solicitor in England, and eligible to practise Law here. That for me was huge, knowing it's been about a 4 year journey trying to get here. Although I was called to the Nigerian Bar in 2011, I had to do a series of re-qualification for the UK - which is slightly tough. I might do a full post on this later. I'm also making a conscious effort to actively network in the career circles - as we all know I can be a bit of a couch potato! Career related, the second thing I hoped to achieve in the first part of the year, was to host more career seminars and create some sort of career platform - off the back of the CV & Career Workshop Mariam and I hosted in Lagos in July 2016. That has been really slow to take off for several reasons - but I'm really hoping it gets done in this 2nd half - as I'm incredibly passionate about it.
Two things I had to do! My cervical screening, which I did, yay (wrote about my experience here)! And then a visit to the dentist which I have not. Boooo!. In my defence I did book an appointment with the dentist, but had to cancel due to work commitment. I'm looking to re-schedule that asap as I need that check up bad for my tiny teeth and gums. Plus one tooth is a little wonky, and seems more so than normal, so I'm considering straightening it out, even though Tee laughs at me that I may have to wear braces as an adult!
Finances & Money
In terms of cutting back on expenditure and living within budget, I think it's been good so far. But I can be quite serious with that so it wasn't much of a concern. What I had hoped to do, was find an additional stream of income. As they say, the average millionaire has seven sources of income Well, that hasn't happened yet! I thought I had a great idea, and then it just sort of fizzled off, so I'm putting my thinking hat daily and hoping God brings some amazing ideas my way and income stream my way!
Hobbies, Habits & Skills!
Ah, I had a lot to do in this category. In my words, in 2017, I wanted to "Fully understand the logic behind reversing a car and pass my driving test". Okay, the good news first. I now fully understand the logic behind reversing a car! Like it's relatively simple and I'm wondering how it took me forever to get it. I think I was just way too impatient. When I think of the fact that I had badly hit my first car and my mum's while trying to reverse in my early days of learning, I just shake my head. The not so good news. I still haven't passed! But bring it on, second half of the year. I wanted to improve (i.e learn) on swimming as well. Eh, not happened yet. All the swimming classes are on weekdays, so I'm trying to see how I can work out that. Also wanted to learn to sew online (after I wrote this post on learning to sew online). To be honest, I wonder if this is one that will get thrown to 2018 - so much to do. I also wanted to read more books, but haven't been consistent with that.
Hair, Skin, Beauty & Fashion
Forgive me, I broke my new hair resolution few weeks into 2017, and went back to using a chemical relaxer to straighten it. I just needed it soft and was too impatient. But since then, I haven't gone back and I'm seriously considering going back natural. I'm not such a DIY queen and would rather outsource certain things. So if I had great natural hair salons around me, or had people who could help, I'm pretty sure I'll be rocking my natural hair like no man's business. But asides that, I wanted to be quite experimental with my hair. And so far I have! I've had clip-ins (I reviewed the Irresistible Me Clip Ins here), braided wigs, and even a blonde- ish wig. Come Autumn / Fall, i will be rocking red hair!
I've been off foundation and powder for most of the year, trying to focus more on skin care - which seems to be working out ok. As mentioned in this Facial Skin Care Post, I'm mostly using the Clinque 3-in 1 and a cleansing brush - so far so good. But I'm eager to try some new stuff. For my skin, I've ditched my regular lotions and currently using a mix of coconut oil and shea butter (the latter I got during our trip to Olumo Rock! - they say it's the real deal). I'm happy with my skin so far. I'm still trying to draw my eyebrows - but my impatience comes in any times. It's good some days, It's such a fail others! Second half, I'll like to improve on this generally - taking of myself. I had a huge clear out of my clothes, so now my closet is much easier to navigate. I'm wearing the same clothes more often and trying to build a closet that works for me. I shook my head when I saw a few items I had purchased simply because I saw it onsomeone! no more of that.
My faith has improved this half year and I've made a conscious effort in being more in tune with God. There's still a whole lot to be done. Haven't journaled as much and haven't joined the readers at church as I said I would. But by next week, I should make all the necessary enquires and get going on that!
Well well. It hasn't particularly gone as planned but there's been some positives. I finally started a few new columns I had in mind and I've had a couple of giveaways as well. Also had a collaboration with JORD Wood Watches. Hopefully the second half of the year brings more content, more readers, more opportunities - and some income!
Generally with regards to my feelings and thoughts, I'm in a good space. I'm making a conscious effort to maintaining positivity, be content and grateful - all day, everyday despite some curve balls life throws.
How was the first half of the year for you?
What did you tick off your list! What are you looking to achieve this second half, and umm, what's getting moved to next year?
Wishing you the very very best of the rest of the year!