Since Christmas Eve until this morning, I didn't check any notifications on my phone, respond to emails and text messages, and log in to social media.
I wish it was because of something deep and profound. But, it wasn't. I was just out of the house the whole week and spent time with my family and my loved ones that I wasn't able to greet anyone a Merry Christmas.
As I look back on 2015, it was a year filled with blessings. I was also able to stay true to the theme I set up for the year which was "Step Up”:
I was able to step up in my relationship with God as I spent most of my mornings with Him and made myself more available to serve Him.
I was able to step up in my relationships with my family and my new friends at the Feast. Whenever we were out, I was able to really be in the moment. The habit of not checking my phone whenever I'm with them really helped. (And I was with my family and loved ones during the past week.)
I was able to step up in my writing. When I checked the number of blog posts I wrote this year, I was able to write 300-plus posts. Next year, I'll write 366 blog posts or more.
I was able to step up in my career as I'm finally steps closer to my dream job.
In short, I was able to step up in every area of my life.
But if there's one thing I regret this year, it would be that I wasn't able to spend more time with the people outside my closest circle.
I wasn't able to spend much time with some of my friends. I don't know if it's part of "growing up" or I just wasn't intentional in meeting them. Either way, I just have to make an effort to meet them more.
I also wasn't able to build stronger relationships with the people in my previous workplace. I was too obsessed with my dream of becoming a full-time blogger and freelancer that I wasn't able to make time to know them deeper (and also didn’t allow them to know me deeper). To my family at Globe, I'm sorry and thank you for the wonderful two years.
I wasn't able to build better relationships with the people in my mailing list. In fact, I missed a lot of emails to them.
I was more connected with the offline world, but I wasn't as connected with the online world this year. I don't know if that's a good thing as I was able to focus on my relationships offline. But, there are people I only meet online.
So, I'm thinking of meeting my blog's subscribers regularly starting next year, say once or twice a month. I don't know the details yet or what the meetings will be about. But, I hope to have those regular meetings soon.
As I close this year, I also want to express my gratitude. I have lots of things I'm grateful for this year:
First, I feel I have grown a lot closer to God. For that, I am so much grateful. Thank You for everything, Father.
I'm also grateful for a better relationship with my family, especially my parents. I'm also grateful for another year of good health for them. As my parents become older, health becomes something we can no longer take for granted. Ma, Pa, my siblings, and everyone in our family, thank you.
I'm also grateful to God for finally letting me meet the person He made for me. I'm also grateful to her for bringing me so much closer to God. Whenever I feel like giving up, she's the one who keeps on telling me to go on. She inspires me with her own journey of beating the odds in her career. To the person I love, thank you for loving me and letting me love you.
I'm grateful for the new people in my life. Thank you for letting me in your lives and for accepting me for who I am.
I'm grateful to my friends who are always there even when I haven't been able to make time for them. Thank you for being patient with me.
I'm grateful for my challenges which continue to make me stronger. I'm a lot closer to my dreams because of those challenges.
I'm grateful to you, my blog's reader and subscriber. I haven't been faithful in posting on my blog, but you're still there. Thank you. The best is yet to come.
I'm grateful for always having enough. I'm not yet where I want to be, especially financially, but I never lacked in resources this year.
I'm grateful to the people who taught me something—big or small. Thank you for sharing your knowledge and experiences with me. I have learned a lot this year because of you.
I'm grateful for everything that happened to me this year. I'm grateful for every success, every failure, every joy, and every heartache.
And to you, thank you for being there. You don't know how much visiting to the blog or opening my emails means to me. Thank you. I hope to meet with you next year.
Merry Christmas and a happy new year! I pray for a blessed 2016 for you and your family.