Last year at this time, I was getting ready to head to Lexington to start my first year of graduate school. Although I enjoy change, it is amazing at how much more comfortable I am this year. I've realized that it doesn't take me long to get established in new places; make new friends, know my way around the city, campus, etc.
I'm excited for this year to begin, but I would like to stop and reflect on the past year first. Here are a list of things I've learned since moving down to Lexington:
1) I don't know as much about fitness as I thought I did. (I'm getting closer though after this past year!)
2) Kentucky has the most beautiful women I've ever seen. (So far that is)
3) The impact that research has on a profession and that the majority of fitness professionals in our field do not stay up to date with it.
4) Never settle. There have been numerous times throughout the past year that I've wanted to "just" find a job and make money, even if this particular job wasn't exactly what I wanted. I now preach to all of my clients and close friends to never settle for anything less than you deserve. If you want something bad enough, you'll find a way to make it happen.
5) I'm even more in the minority when it comes to marriage and serious relationships. I guess I'm at that "age" where all of my friends are either married or engaged, but damn! I sometimes can't find a guy friend to hang out with because they are all too busy with their girlfriends or wives!
6) People in Kentucky love to drink bourbon.
7) People in Kentucky are crazy about basketball. More so than the Calvin Alumni.
8) Things rarely go according to plan. Since moving to Lexington, my career goals have changed from wanting to be a college professor, to a strength coach, to a community college professor, to a health and wellness director, back to a college professor, to a corporate fitness trainer, back to a strength coach, to a campus recreation coordinator, to a personal trainer, back to a professor, and now to a ___________. Let's just say that my current goal is to make a difference in people's lives every day and to become the best fitness professional the health field has ever seen (I don't think this one will change!). All of this being said, I am thankful for graduate school really making me sit back and truly examine who I am and what I want out of my career.
9) You realize who your friends really are when you move away. I am blessed to have a strong circle of friends, some of which I stay in contact more than others. That being said, there are quite a few friends that for one reason or another, I've just lost touch with. I went from "wanting everyone to like me" in high school, to "thinking everyone liked me" in college, to "understanding not everyone who is nice to me actually likes me" my first year of graduate school. I think everyone goes through this particular mindset, and I actually enjoy it; knowing who I can count on for advice, and who I shouldn't go out of my way to see when I'm back in town!
10) Being away from my family for an extended period of time is one of the hardest things I've had to deal with. I'm not sure how people move across the world and only see their family once every few years. Maybe my family is different, but there isn't a day that goes by where I don't text or call at least one member in my close family. I mentioned this is my about me section, but it's easy to be successful when you have a strong support system behind you. I am blessed to have this support system.
There are a few other things that I have learned over the course of the past year, but those were the first ten that came to my mind. I'm looking forward to another successful year filled with new friends (maybe girls?), new opportunities, plenty of learning, and a whole lot of fun.
I'm going make it happen.