2023 in review

by - January 01, 2024

2023 has brought change for me but in the best ways - starting a job in the legal industry helping victims of domestic violence and moving in with my partner. As I have done since 2017, this is my reflection on 2023.

2023 lessons

A lot can change in a few months.

At the start of this year in January, I was grappling with grief and loss and uncertain about when I would secure a job. I had already had various interviews for roles in the past few months and had been rejected at the final stages. By the end of the month, I was informed I secured a role and honestly everything picked up from there for me. Difficult moments can feel never-ending but our life can change from one day to the next for the better.

Listen to your intuition, even when you are being told not to.

This one is more work-related for me. I have known for a while that I wanted to work in a more personal area of law and that I want to help people with the law. However, working in law in the UK is incredibly competitive. Due to this, I have lost count of the number of times I was told that I should take whatever job I could get within the legal industry. I knew in my heart that I did not want to work in any type of law and just take “any job” in the legal industry if it did not align with my values. I was even told at some point that I was too naive/ the work I wanted to do did not exist. 

Whilst I am fully aware the legal industry is flawed that I will not always be able to make a difference and that ultimately in the future I will need to combine Legal Aid and private clients, I am so glad I followed my instinct. I am so thankful that I pushed for a job in the legal industry that aligns with my values because I found it. My work feels fulfilling even if sometimes emotionally difficult. There is of course a chance I could have been wrong about this. However, I feel in situations where your instinct is telling you to pursue something, you should always try. If you are wrong, then you learn, but at least you will not regret not trusting your intuition and wonder what would have happened if I had trusted my instinct.

What matters is moving at your own pace.

Around us, there will always be different people in different stages. On the surface, it can seem that other people doing different things have it better, and maybe you should have followed a different path/ be doing what they are doing. Whatever you choose to do, there will always be advantages and disadvantages and everyone has problems of some sort. We are also all on different journeys and will be ready at different points. I saw some friends become engaged this year, others travel and others focus on careers. Neither is the right or wrong choice, it just depends on what feels right for you and what you wish to prioritise.

There is some good in every phase.

When I originally moved back home after university, I found it a difficult adjustment to begin with. I had become accustomed to more freedom and my own routine. After a couple of months, I learned to really value being at home - being able to spend more time with my family, building some savings and the comfort of my mum’s cooking.

Anxiety never goes away, but you get better at living with it.

This was a bit of a tough pill to swallow because anyone who has experienced anxiety will tell you it’s absolutely awful. When I first started experiencing anxiety more regularly, I think a part of me was thinking it’s okay, at some point it will all go away. If only mental health was that simple. My anxiety is not going to disappear and there will be times when it flares up again. However, each time it does flare up, I am just that little bit more experienced at dealing with it. Each time I am getting better at coping with it even if sometimes it does hit me badly. 

Overall I am thankful for 2023. It has probably been the best year for me in a while even if January was hard. However, it is worth noting that I am not taking into account international events here. I am only referring to my personal experience and what has happened in my life. Globally, 2023 has been rough and news has been heavy. 

Keep me going 🙂:

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