What I Learned in 2017


Ah 2017 we hardly knew ye. You brought with you new opportunities, friendships, successes and failures. Whether 2017 restored your faith in humanity or sent you hiding inside the coat closet in a fetal position, you undoubtedly learned something. We decided to crowdsource your new-found knowledge in our December 19, 2017 newsletter and share it with the YNPN Chicago network. 

Here are your answers to “what did you learn in 2017?”:

I learned that it’s important to take your days off, focusing on personal life, and getting a mental break. 2017 is the first year I have ever used all my vacation time!”
– Leslie G.

It’s okay to start over no matter how old you are or how scared you are.
– Amber L.

Take risks. If you were to place a value on your happiness, it would be quite large.
– Ryan L.

Be honest with yourself about your aspirations, but be careful that the idea of your future doesn’t cloud your vision of what is present.
– Joe T.

I introduced myself to Fydor Dostoyevsky which was incredibly depressing but enlightening. I’m learning the value of truth/honesty even in the smallest of things. And I was awakened to the horrors of WW1 thanks to Dan Carlin. Pretty much took myself to podcast school.
– Kenny B.

I’ve learned that memory is equal parts saboteur and informant.
– Damian P.

I learned that if you’re going to do anything of any use to yourself or others you must do it with an open heart.
– Adrienne M.

I learned how to be a better listener. There’s no special trick to being good at it (e.g. making eye contact, repeating back what’s been said, etc.); the key is simply having a genuine curiosity about another person and their experiences.
– Stephen B.

You don’t have to please everyone and not everyone will like you, and that is okay.
– Anonymous

I learned over and over and over again that you truly cannot trust other people. I also learned that it’s not necessary to run the 9-5 M-F rat race to survive! There’s loopholes!

I enjoy life more when I have a positive attitude and focus on things I Am thankful for.
– Sophie G.

I learned that good things really do come to those who wait.
-Bradlie Y.

The injustices in our world are the result of choices made by those in power. They are not uncontrollable forces of nature, and they can be remedied by collective human will.
– Brian

Time management, and that it’s okay to say no.
– Anonymous

2017 was the year of doing things I didn’t want to do. How to power through a job I didn’t like, through doing manual labor I hated, through arguments and frustrations with my husband, just powering through because what other choice did I have? And through that I learned that I’m a lot tougher than I thought I was, that I can do things I didn’t know I could do! I feel stronger and I appreciate things more. And good came out of all the hard. I was definitely rewarded for my perseverance.
– Ashley W.

How to create a community of support.
– Anonymous

I learned that it is okay to take a break in order to refocus your goals and your career. Taking time for yourself is important in making sure that both your professional and personal lives make you as happy as possible.
– Lauren G.

I’ve learned that letting things happen the way they’re supposed to happen is the best way to keep yourself balanced. You can’t control your situations, but you can control your reactions to it. Self-care techniques are the most important tools to keep for yourself.
– Elisha-Rio A.