Friday 11 January 2019

18 Lessons learnt in 2018

Hello lovely readers!

I have been back home for just over 10 days and this week I started getting fully into the swing of things. After travelling for 3 and a half weeks, with 6 flights in between and a few long bus trips, I really needed to catch my breath and process all that we had seen and experienced on our journey. So I took some time out to come down from the constant high I was on during my trip, and was quickly drawn into reality by the release of my second-born's matric results last week. 

Before leaving South Africa, I was literally sprinting towards the end of the working year, which came to an abrupt stop when I boarded the plane. I still had a few things I wanted to sort out for work, so with all good intentions, I took my laptop along. I even started writing my final 2018 blogpost in the taxi after landing in Jeddah. Alas, my plans were thwarted when the laptop battery died, and I could not charge it as I didn't have my three-pin adaptor along (and none could be found in Makkah!). About a week later, my emails stopped working on my phone and iPad, so I really had no choice but to let it go.

I therefore had lots of time for introspection, and take stock of 2018, and the lessons, some of which wacked me sideways...

  1. I learnt to listen to and trust my intuition, this extends to relationships, work and my kids.
  2. I never have the parenting thing pat down, no matter how grown up my kids are, I need to be prepared for anything. The challenges are bigger and more complicated as they get older.
  3. January 2018 taught me to pay really close attention and to listen to the inner voice where my kids are concerned. If I feel that they need me, even if they look as if they're managing, it means they really do need me. It may not necessarily look the way I anticipate it, or what I think they need. I trust and know that they will tell me what is needed. 
  4. This was a big lesson: "In my world there are no bad kids,
    just impressionable, conflicted young people
    wrestling with emotions & impulses,
    trying to communicate
    their feelings& needs,
    the only way they know how." -
    Janet Lansbury
  5. Truth is key. Again, I learnt to be completely honest with my kids, even in terms of my shortcomings as a parent. This theme of truth carried through to all relationships, personal and business, and actually made life less complicated.
  6. I have very little tolerance for pretence, I chose not to participate in maintaining false pretences. It's disingenuous and makes a fool of me and others, as the truth always makes an appearance.
  7. Allowing others the space to grow and not to insert myself where I'm not needed. My control freak means that I have a tendency to want to 'fix' all problems. I learnt to let things be if it wasn't my place to get involved, I learnt to allow others to work things out in their own way and on their own terms. 
  8. To engage with everyone judgement-free - this at times becomes difficult, especially with our conditioning, what we've been taught since birth and our own issues. I fully accept that mistakes are part of my human experience as well as for others.
  9. Being mindful and taking my time to respond when dealing with volatile situations. It's always easier to react impulsively, but this is usually not the best way to for me to respond,  as it's usually from a place of anger, which just exacerbates the situation.
  10. 'Not everyone who smiles at you is your friend.' It has been an eye opening year, where people have revealed their true feelings towards me. They may try to keep it a secret, and again, intuition is an invaluable asset, so I see you! I get that am not everyone's cup of tea. This is ok, I have learned to accept that I will not appeal to everyone. I choose to live authentically, regardless of others' opinions and expectations.
  11. Embracing myself entirely, the good, the bad and the ugly. And every year, I learn a bit more about myself, see things I haven't wanted to before, and work at embracing those not so likeable things about myself (again). 
  12. My experiences on Hajj were really profound life lessons, and filtered through to every single element of my life last year. It also takes work to live your Hajj, as everyone says, but ultimately it has filled my life with so much Grace and Blessings, algamdulilah
  13. The Power of Duah (Prayer). There were so many trials during last year, many of which I did not how to handle or navigate. I believe that my prayers got me through the really trying moments.
  14. The importance of Tawakkul (reliance on, or trust in the Divine). Apart from carrying me through difficult times, the faith in my Creator has also meant that I was blessed in many ways. I am clear that only He knows what's in my heart and that is all that matters.
  15. Being thankful, and giving thanks is essential to my happiness and attracting more positive energy.
  16. To be very aware of my impact on others and to be responsible with my actions. I am a role model to my three young men, who will very soon be venturing into the world with all that they have learnt and seen.
  17. Focusing on my own journey will mean I do not have time (nor do I have the inclination) to be concerned with what anyone else is doing.
  18. Respect for my fellow human being is crucial, this extends to children, those from other cultures, religions and those with differing beliefs. Making others feel 'seen' and 'heard, and just being kind makes a huge difference.
I have documented a lot of these lessons in previous blog posts throughout 2018, but seeing it one place just cements the year for me. I don't do new year resolutions, except that I will continue to improve on myself, my interactions and most importantly focus on my connection with the Almighty InshaAllah. Hope you guys have all had a good start to 2019 ♥️

I have not yet taken the time to do a lookpost this year, and life very suddenly went into vacation mode last year. So I have put together some of my 2018 looks, most of which can be worn into this year; the importance of investing in classic pieces!

These looks were put together using so many existing pieces, with very few new purchases.
The Chimpel bag, sunglasses, suede boots, wrap dress and Vans sneakers were the only new additions in these looks. As always, buy smartly darlings!!

Ciao for now, 
RuBe xoxo

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