top of page

21 lessons that 2021 has taught me

Oh 2021, you definitely kicked my ass for sure. I can’t say that I will miss all that much about the last 365 days but I did learn some pretty valuable lessons. The shitty stuff this year, there's been plenty, allowed me to grow & transform in ways I didn’t think was possible so there is always a silver lining to every situation. 


So here are 21 lessons that I will be taking with me in 2022, for a hopefully better & brighter year. 


Feeling ready doesn’t exist. I had so many plans that I was putting off until I felt ready but I realised that ‘ready’ was a cute little packaged excuse that gave me a way out of doing the scary thing. 

You will always have haters. I had a lot of ‘close’ people in my life say some pretty awful things to me when I launched my e-book but I can either listen to people’s unasked for opinions or push on closer to doing something I'm incredibly passionate about.   

Quality over quantity. I guess I have always known this one, but in 2022 I am taking quality humans only into the new year. I have always been described as a ‘people person’ & seen the best in people but I am very bad at letting friendships go when they no longer serve me. 

Hindsight is an absolute bitch. There were a lot of situations that happened in the last year that I have looked back on with disgust at myself for not ‘seeing’ what was right in front of me. But really, there is literally no valid point to that exercise. I was doing my best with the information that I had & the past can’t be changed simply by hoping. 

Everything happens for a reason. This one I am still learning to be ok with, I have had a lot make me say are you fucking serious, can I not just catch a break? But then in the end something will turn up & the situation will work out or something better comes along.  

Just got to close your eyes & jump. After listening to the do you mind podcast I learnt to start to trust my first instinct & see it through. I am the queen of pro/con lists. They have merit, but it makes it hard to make any decision if you keep going but this… but that…
The bonus is, if it doesn’t work out with the first decision, you have plan b locked & loaded. 


It’s ok to be bad at something in the beginning. I did a number of things for the first time this year & straight up sucked. I was so hard on myself, until I realised I need to be bad & practice before I can improve. Sucking at the start is to be expected & I’m just a human learning a new skill. 

I really love learning. When I first had my injury, I signed up for a content marketing course & devoured all of the information in a week because my brain was so thrilled to be learning again. After university I got into a pretty solid routine of work, socialising & sleep😴 but there was nothing keeping my brain engaged or motivated. 

I am not asking for too much or taking up too much space. I have always felt since a young age that I am too much for people. And I tried to be quieter to keep the peace & please everyone. 2022 is not for a small Chels, anyone who is intimidated by how happy, or loud, or passionate I am can exit stage left. 

I deserve the good in life. Having small wins can sometimes be embarrassing when you aren’t used to it. Like you are proud of yourself but you also feel like you need to keep quiet so people don’t think you are self obsessed. But really, people who truly love you will want to celebrate with you.  

Having good people around you is a game changer. Everyone needs vibrant, positive souls in their life. Don't settle until you find those people, they definitely are out there. 

It’s ok to admit that you are hurting. This was a super hard pill to swallow. I have never wanted to burden the people in my life with my emotional bullshit or scare them away when I was going through it. Growing up, I was always the stone wall girl, no one really knew what went on behind the exterior. Since I have started (still a long as hell way to go), to ride through the emotion & feel it when it happens instead of stomp it down, I realised it goes away a lot quicker that way.  

It’s totally fine to do things alone. I still get butterflies if I go out for lunch by myself but that’s just because I feel judged for being alone when really, no one gives two fucks. If you want to do something & everyone is being a flake, just go. Enjoy your own company.

Change is refreshing but can also feel like free-falling. The last few months of this year has been rapid fire change after change. I am trying hard to lean into it & always keep a smile but, there’s been moments where nothing feels okay & it starts to spiral into feeling out of control of the entire situation. 

I am smarter than I give myself credit for. I’m leaving the loud, self-doubting voice in my mind on the 31st December & they are not welcome in 2022. Newsflash, it is mid 2023 & they most definitely are still there :\ 

I don’t have to have it all figured out. I just need to keep taking steps in the direction that makes me the most happy & fulfilled & I can make adjustments as I go. I really truly thought I would forever be in hospitality but now I am out of hotels & it would take something huge for me to go back. 

Set big, ambitious & terrifying goals. I kept telling myself that this website was too small to be thinking about goals but that is 100% not the case. I now have goals & feel focussed & clear on the new year. 

There is always someone smarter/better than you. But at the same time someone looks up to where you are with ‘one day’ on their mind. I took inventory of all the incredibly clever people around me who are crushing their businesses & felt inadequate but I realised that I also have something to offer & I am doing it from a place of love so it will attract the right audience who appreciate it, in time. 

Sometimes failure is a bonus. When I started my print shop I was so excited & thought it would be my future income but I realised that I want to keep photography as something I love, something that calms me & my creative release. Feeling like a failure, I re-evaluated & moved on to the ‘next plan’ for this space. Shifting the failure into a lesson was such a positive exercise for me.  

I can actually do this. I can see where this is taking me & it’s something I never dreamed possible but actually, I am capable & will succeed because I have the passion & determination to not give up when the roadblocks come along. 


2021 has been prickly for me, hence the cactus photo 🤣

bottom of page