Lessons of others

After sharing the lessons I’ve learned from my semi-sabbitcal, I asked on Instagram what people have learned in 2022.
When I was reading through them, I realised how different the lessons are that people have learned. Sometimes even contradictive. I’ve made a selection (there were just too many) and put them in an order that seemed fitting.

What I’ve learned from this: what sticks with you is because of the time and place you are in, the context of your life, in that exact moment. Whenever you’re reading something, whether it resonates or not: it’s all because you, as the reader, engage with it at that moment. The lesson says as much about the student as it says about the teacher.

Julia: “We don’t need as much as we think we do.”
Linda: “It’s OK to say no, even to fun things, to manage your (limited) amount of energy.”
Iris: “Saying ‘yes’ to doing unfamiliar things.”
Marte and Riva: “Saying no.”
Saskia: “Don’t put off the things you want to do. It could be over just like that.”
Kim and Surya: “Be patient.”
Annelot: “Not saying yes directly, but considering first it it truly fits me.”
Mireille: “Moving abroad and working as a digital nomad wasn’t as easy as expected.”
Anonymous: “I’ve learned I can go back on my decisions.”
Famke: “Trust the process. It’s not easy at first but once things start moving it will be ok.”
Christine: “Taking time to think is time well spent.”
Katie: “To take a risk, even if it means I might fail.”
Patrizia: “Jump and a net will appear.”
Annette: “I recognise that I live based on fear and I don’t want to do that anymore. I only have to learn ‘how’.”
Christine: “There’s no correct time to do things. You can be young or old, the time is right when it feels right.”
Yvonne: “An unsafe working atmosphere is not the norm. And I can can distance myself from that.”
Thea: “I don’t need to take immediate action on tasks: often things resolve themselves.”
Carla: “I must take breaks and time for myself, especially when I think I’m ‘too busy’ for it.”
Anonymous: “Rest is not something you have to earn.”
Christine: “Slowing down often propels you forward later on.”
Erika: “Put down some of those balls before you drop them all.”
Giuliana: “My body is my fortress and I have to love it and nourish it.”
Cathelijne: “Sports/exercise/being outside has such an impact on how I feel.”
Voxune: “The one thing you will always carry with you is yourself, so be kind to them.”
Stana: “I can do a lot more than I thought I could, when I put in effort and patience.”
Kimberly: “That I don’t owe anyone an apology or explanation, except for myself.”
Tine: “Traveling alone is such a blessing for my soul.”
Ilona: “I’m different from everybody else and that’s okay. Although sometimes a bit lonely.”
Selma: “We are more alike than we think. We just have to be willing to let others in.”
Miriam: “I finally do things in a way that benefits me instead of trying to adapt to what doesn’t.”
Claartje: “The importance of sharing (life, fun, worries, sadness, small talk) with other people. Because I’m an artist, doesn’t mean I have to be a hermit.”
Leonie: “How liberating it is when not everyone has to like you.”
Cathelijne: “I don’t always have to respond immediately to messages.”
Betty: “Reach out more. For help, connections, to make friends, to loved ones.”
Iris: “I have to follow my own path, even if it means disappointing people.”
Mirthe: “How I talk to myself makes a big difference in how I feel.”
Jennifer: “Be authentic, no matter what the circumstances are.”
Michelle: “You are not your brain. You can ask your brain for different thoughts.”
Anonymous: “Trust the red flags earlier.”
Elina: “I went on meds for ADHD. I feel more like myself every day.”
Janne: “The effect of alcohol on the body: life is better without it.”
Elisa: “My partner and I weren’t able to talk anymore after a harsh discussion. Instead, we wrote to each other.”
Anonymous: “You can’t love someone into loving you.”
Ailisha: “Being a mum is amazing if you get sleep.”
Sigrid: “It is hard to switch from being the child to being the parent to my parents (f*ck dementia).”
Lesley: “Losing your dog is just as hard as losing any family member. Dogs are the best people.”
Ilse: “I can make pottery despite chronic pain, and that brings me happiness.”
Yvonne: “How to paint with acrylics.”
Julia: “Knitting! I made my first jumper and l’m so pleased.”
Rhiannon: “How to make fermented tomatoes (thank you Olia Hercules).”
Maggy: “To feel again.”
Ellen: “Dark clouds don’t always mean rain.”
Shay: “Seasons of hardship don’t last forever.”
Chloe: “Everything is temporary.”
Saskia: “I’ve learned nothing this year. And that’s fine. There’s no deadline for learning.”

I’m curious what you have learned this year. Let me know in the comments below!

Want to receive more tips and creative ideas in your mail?

Sign up for my newsletter and receive my monthly newsletter with sneak peeks of what I’m working on, (illustration) tips and new paintings when they are for sale.

Thank you for subscribing!

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *