It’s always so exciting to develop my film and review all the scans afterwards. This year, in particular, I’ve been making a conscious effort to capture more moments with my friends and family, and my personal milestones.

If you showed me all these photos a year ago, I don’t think I would’ve believed this is now my life.

From buying a place to making two career jumps in less than a year, I think everything started to shift when I realized that the mountain I had to get over was... me!

I was being my own greatest challenge by talking myself out of opportunities, and I did it in the most subtle ways too! Here are the habits I changed.

  • I stopped with the negative self-talk (e.g., “I’m so dumb, aha.”) and self-deprecating jokes. Being around my niece and nephew made me realize that the words I used could become their inner thoughts. 
  • I stopped saying no to myself (e.g., “600 job applicants? 4000 comments for this giveaway? There’s no way I would get noticed.”). 
  • By saying, “This is not a priority to me right now,” instead of, “I don’t have time for this,” made me realize that if it was important to me, I can always make the time.

  • I stopped apologizing for taking up space in a room (e.g. “Sorry, I’m talking so much.”). 
  • I talked to myself like someone I loved, and saying affirmations out loud helped. I found it cringe at first, but noticed the weight that my words carried (e.g., “I’m not the reflection of others’ unprocessed trauma.”). It also helped me get through tough workouts too (e.g., “I don’t stop when I’m tired. I stop when I’m done.). You have to be your own cheerleader. 

  • I stopped putting a label on my emotions and thoughts, because having anxious thoughts did not mean, “I have anxiety.” I started viewing my thoughts like a song stuck in my head or clouds that will float by. You notice it and you know it’ll pass. 
  • I started saying at least 5 things I’m grateful for every morning.

I basically realized that by having self-respect, you shows others how to treat you. I’m sharing all this because these are the words I wish I knew when I had my self-doubts.

Before I sign off, I‘m so excited to share that I’m now the social media manager for the employer I’ve always pictured myself working for, TDSB! It feels like it’s come full circle, and I’ve made little Cindy, who thought she wanted to be a teacher, so proud!