Personal Development | Emotional Intelligence | Self-Awareness | Growth Mindset | Social Skills | Practical Skills
I now appreciate every moment because I know it's a gift and not a given.
Death stared me in the face yet again, this time the two most important men in my life at once. Sitting in the coffee shop in the hospital, my Father in ICU with Covid and my husband in the emergency room going through all sorts of tests after having, what they suspected was a heart attack right next to me on the plane on our way to see my Dad in hospital.
How well you live comes down to how much you love.
– Robin Sharma
This quote struck deep into my heart. I’ve built up so many things in my head about what life is about, but it truly is this simple. Love.
I used to think the purpose of life is about finding meaning, living a good life, making a contribution, and being content. I guess I wasn’t that far off. What greater meaning could there be than to love and be loved in return?
At the end of high school, I seriously considered taking a preparation year. Can you guess what was one of the main reactions this desire elicited? Usually, shock, often confusion and usually followed by an assumption that (gasp) you don’t have everything figured out at the ripe old age of 18.
A Preparation year differs quite a bit from the well-known Gap year. It isn’t simply a way to loaf around for a year before starting with your “grown-up life”. A prep year can be an enriching, life-changing experience.
Preparation years aren’t just for those who are uncertain about their career choice but also for those who want to invest some time in themselves
Your twenties can be the most challenging years of your life. It can also be the most enjoyable time in your life journey. Being independent, choosing a career, discovering who you are and where you fit in in this world. Having a social life, figuring out how to budget. Trying not to disappoint your parents, mentors or yourself. And be happy at the same time. Let me put you at ease. Nobody has everything under control in their twenties.
This year I have made a major mind shift on priorities. I used to prioritize things like work, studies and courses, and my photography. This means that I would put most of my energy and focus on these aspects of my life, but slack in things like health, mental health, and fitness. I didn’t ignore them and they were important to me; I just wasn’t paying as much attention. I am a tremendously conscientious person who takes my duties very seriously, too seriously sometimes. So, when I set out my crammed schedule, things like exercise and preparing healthy meals flew out the window first.
Emotions are something that we’re all born with. Some of us, however, may experience a greater array of them throughout the day and base more of our decisions on how we feel. Maybe you’re one of those people and maybe this is something that you would like to change. Or maybe you realize that you base most of your decisions on how you feel but don’t really see why this could be a problem.
Let’s start off with the results of allowing your emotions to rule your life.
“What an amazing, positive, scary, real, and exciting up, down and in circles roller coaster of a journey these last two years have been. I could never have imagined what was in store for me.”
- Monet Bruwer
We asked Monet some questions about her experience in the Preparation Year as well as the Skills Development program the year after that. Here is what she had to say in her own words.
Incidents or traumas could have a massive impact on how we perceive the world and respond today. This we know. But, sometimes, it’s also what we perceive as ‘small’ incidents, the ones you would remember and then discard just as quickly because it seems too insignificant to have an effect on you now. What I have learned is to not downplay things that seem to pop up every now and then. If there’s a bee, there’s a nest. And, if it’s having an effect on you now it’s important enough to pay attention to.