What a year.

I don’t know about you guys, but I feel like this year changed me in ways that all my previous years combined didn’t. The amount of things that happened, things I learned, things I did, and changes to my core self and life, is pretty extraordinary, and not only in the “remarkable” definition of the word, but moreso in the “unusual” definition. I feel like nothing is the same for me as it once was. And looking back to last December 29, there sat a girl in my mom’s living room who had absolutely no idea that she’d see the world this year, and that nothing would ever be the same again. That she’d see herself. That she’d HAVE to look. And learn. And grow. And love. And be different. These eyes are new now. These bones have crossed ground they never had before. I almost can’t believe it.

In one short year: I lived in Costa Rica. I put all my belongings in storage. I traveled to 20 US states (4 of them I went to twice). I drove clear across the country in an RV, twice. Grew my business bigger than it had ever been. I started this blog! I started a new business. I loved, without being loved back. I had multiple broken hearts. I had to say goodbye to people and places and I didn’t really want to. I lived in Austin. I rediscovered my passion for country dancing and firearms. I discovered a new passion for riding motorcycles. I did things I’d never done before. I learned how to drive, operate, and fix an RV. I did Random Acts of Kindness for complete strangers and volunteered in local communities. I was honest and open. I changed my patterns. I got jealous, and handled it. I shared my heart with you all. I cried my head off…in front of people. And I danced more, laughed more, cried more, loved more, grew more, and changed more than ever.

And I’m proud.
Thank you for being here with me.

So in reflecting on 2011, I’ve been thinking about some the many life and love lessons I’ve learned. And I want to share them with you all:

1) Take the risk. Buy the ticket. Get on the plane.
2) Always do that which scares you.
3) Cry when you need to, for as long as you need to.
4) Go way out of your comfort zone
5) Apologize for your wrongdoings
6) Make mistakes
7) Don’t be afraid to love
8) Partnership makes work more fun
9) Every missed opportunity is something exciting waiting to happen
10) Love someone, even if they don’t love you back
11) Love someone even if it doesn’t turn out the way you want it to
12) You can’t create a spark that isn’t there
13) There are amazing people everywhere
14) Love without wanting something in return
15) Hold nothing back
16) Hard work plus clear intention creates unbelievable results
17) Always be yourself
18) You are WAY more capable than you can even imagine
19) Lean on those who love you.
20) DANCE as often as possible.
21) Every situation is an opportunity to learn and grow
22) Do nice things for other people
23) When you’re unhappy, look inward first
24) Have more fun than you could possibly imagine.

Here’s a fun, silly, Sally-style video with some more lessons:

I’m so in love with 2011…with all its many ups and downs. I did a heck of a lot of growing, accompanied by a heck of a lot of growing pains. Man, it was both the hardest, and the most amazing year I’ve ever had. I know I’ll continue to grow, forever, but I’m looking forward to 2012 being the year that I see the fruits of my labor. It’s hard to imagine that 2012 could be as wild and adventurous and tumultuous as 2011, but who knows. I intend for it to be sparkling and bright and full of serendipitous moments, love, joy, opportunities, smiling, laughter, business, $$$$, and more than I could possible even imagine or dream up for my life. I have some big goals in mind. I’m going to get them. I know it. And you all are along for the ride. LET’S DO THIS!!!

How was your year? Leave a comment below and tell me the most pivotal thing that happened to you this year. Or comment about which life lesson from above resonated with you the most. AND…share this post with your peeps! Mwah.