As 2019 and the 2010s come to an end, it’s time reflect on everything this year taught us. From a failed attempt at ‘Dry January’ to a cleaning binge I called ‘Detox December,’ my key takeaways from this year centered on making small adjustments to help us simply live better. I will be applying my new lifestyle habits and learnings in the new year. I am entering what I feel is the most critical decade of my life. From life lessons to style, beauty or wellness hacks, 2019 taught me many things.  I’ll take these 19 learnings from the year with me into 2020.

  1. It truly does take AT LEAST 21 days to form a habit, and only about a week to break it.  Fit February was a great way to jumpstart a 9-month streak of workouts, but once I went a solid week without working out in October, I was done for the year.
  2. Transparency is ALWAYS a good idea. This goes for relationships, jobs, and everything in between. I found myself less confused and/or disappointed this year when I just kept things real from the jump, instead of leaving people to guess, speculate or investigate my wants, needs, and intentions.
  3. You owe it to yourself to walk away from people and spaces that do not serve you. Period. Nothing further.
  4. “Matching energies” does not help you manifest better. I tried doing this in the dating realm and it was actually counterproductive. Hear me out: matching energies can be effective if you are drained from giving too much of yourself, to no avail. However, when it comes to wanting more, you have to be vulnerable enough to put your best foot forward when appropriate. We’re breaking toxic patterns in 2020.
  5. You should never be afraid to take up space, especially as a woman of color. If we don’t speak up and let our voices be heard, then who will?
  6. Most problems in life can be solved by drinking more water. This seems like a no-brainer, but it became more apparent to me in 2019. Stay hydrated to ward off acne, f*ckboys, and anxiety.
  7. For millennial working women who like to look “everyday fly,” there is life after H&M and Forever 21, and it comes in the forms of  Zara, Topshop, ASOS, and Missguided. Over the course of the past year, 75% of my wardrobe is from these brands/retailers. They are among the elite retailers that cater to women in their late twenties/early thirties, without being too cheesy or obnoxiously priced.
  8. Graphic tees are basically the cauliflower of fashion. So versatile. This year, I’ve worn my favorite bands tees with skirts, dresses, slacks, and denim.
  9. Handbags matter and they are here to stay. This goes for everyday bags that we carry to work and those trendy conversation starters. This year, we saw a resurgence of vintage styles for the quintessential accessory.
  10. Sneaker culture is no mere trend. It’s an actual lifestyle– one that should be embraced and celebrated. Because, we all deserve to be cute and comfortable, at the same time.
  11. If you’re over the age of 25, it’s time for an eye cream, sis. All those late nights will start to show if you don’t keep the delicate skin around your eyes hydrated and puff-free.
  12. All sunscreens are not created equal. Opt for physical, mineral sunscreens (titanium dioxide and zinc oxide). Steer clear of chemical sunscreens like oxybenzone (the most toxic sunscreen ingredient), as some of these can enter the bloodstream, disrupt hormone levels, and harm coral reefs.
  13. Beauty oils are for EVERYONE. This year, I discovered a facial oil for every skin concern. It doesn’t matter if your skin is dry or oily; there is an oil on the market for you. What I learned is that you can add them to you skincare regimen as a targeted treatment or sealant on top of water-based treatments.
  14. Bite Beauty is the absolute best brand for natural, cruelty-free lip products for dry lips. As an early adopter of the brand, I’ve seen them get even better with time. The Agave Lip Mask is one of few products that keeps my lips moisturized during my isotretinoin (Accutane) treatment.
  15. A healthy vagina is a happy vagina. From apple cider vinegar rinses to probiotics, to organic tampons, there are many natural ways to keep your pH balance on point. And you’ll feel like a whole new woman if you use these natural methods to care for your lady parts.
  16. CBD really does help with everything. It’s an absolute God-send.
  17. Evening Primrose Oil is the answer to PMS. I’m a hormonal early thirty-something female at the height of fertility, and EPO has worked wonders for me.
  18. Taking the right supplements truly can improve your mood and skin.
  19. Confirmed: traveling with friends is good for your mental health. Make sure you secure your travel friends for 2020!

What did you learn in 2019 that helped you live your best life? Let me know in the comments!

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