A big theme this year for me has been being mindful. In the past, I feel that I wasn't always mindful of my emotions or feelings but as I grow older I really have gotten to know myself and where I am comfortable and where I am not. Being mindful (to me) doesn't mean that you disregard your own feelings but rather that you are aware and conscious of what situations, people, acts, etc. mean to you and their impact on both you and society (those around you). 

This has been as simple as me slowing down when my brain & body is telling me to and as complex as reading up on a social justice issue that I really don't know much about to become more informed on it. Working with young adults and children has really taught me to think before I speak because boy do they repeat and really hear everything.

One thing I have been really trying to practice is asking myself, “How would I feel if someone said this to me?” This has, in my opinion, really helped me consider if what I am saying really needs to be said. It really is similar to when we tell children "If you don't have anything nice to say, don't say anything at all" and I really do think that sometimes adults need to hear this much more! Don't get me wrong, I make mistakes and forget to check in with myself, but as I challenged myself to do this year, I am trying to be more self aware. I recently read this Ghandi quote that resonated with me and I would love to share it with you all: "Speak only if it improves upon the silence."