Why my 2017 was great and how I’m going to grow even more in 2018

Why my 2017 was great and how I'm going to grow even more in 2018 | rhianna olivia

As I sit writing this post, it is early afternoon on January 1st 2018. I’m sat in PJs with a brew, there’s a sleeping cat to one side of me and Joe to the other.

I, rather miraculously, don’t have a hangover even though we were up until after 2am watching Drag Race All Stars 2 and drunk on one too many G&Ts. (The best way to bring in a new year, just FYI.)

I made stacks of pancakes for breakfast and had a long, hot shower and a face mask afterwards. Last night, Netflix announced they had put up every season of Friends and our flat is spotless (and feels a little bare) after taking the decorations down yesterday afternoon.

On the flipside, I’ve had a rash under my arms, down my arms to my elbows and along my chest for about a week and it’s slowly driving me insane. And I came on my period this morning so hello period pain.

Swings and roundabouts, hey?

I don’t really know where I’m going with this post. I just felt like writing and reflecting on 2017, so that’s what I’m going to do. I feel like there’s going to be a lot of this in 2018 – me doing something because I want to, rather than because I feel like I have to.

I tend to do reflective posts every year. I find it a good way to build goals and gain closure from the year just gone. And, often, there are little things that are worth celebrating you may have forgotten about.

All over social media, people are gleefully wishing away 2017. Which I get. I totally understand. For the world in general, 2017 was a really weird (and often outright shitty) year. But, for me at least, 2017 was simply amazing.

Is it okay to feel a little guilty about that? I don’t know – I guess because there have been so many tragedies, political problems and tension in the world, I feel like my life should have reflected that and it just didn’t.

This time last year, we brought in 2017 in a very similar way in which we brought in 2018. We were on our friend’s sofa getting drunk, watching telly and playing card games. We ended up walking home because we couldn’t get a taxi and it was wonderful to walk through the streets with a strange combination sense of calm and joy. New Year’s Day 2017 was spent relaxing and eating curry, which was a welcomed change from all the gravy covered roasted food over the Christmas period.

But then came the 2nd January. People were heading back to work, Christmas was over, I had nothing to focus on. I was jobless (and only halfway through my period of redundancy) and I spent most of January in a cycle of anxiety and depression. I would never have believed you if you’d have told me how incredible my 2017 was going to be.

In 2017, I got a job I adore, I got out of my student overdraft, I spent so much wonderful time with family and made so many memories. I held down the job I love, I made more money from my blog than ever, I became financially secure for the first time in my life. I travelled, I saw new places, I went to events, I was given opportunities I could only dream of.

I made friends for life, I solidified friendships I already had, I watched those close to me grow as people. I grew. I gained confidence in myself I never thought I’d have. I discovered new passions.

And, to top it all off, the cherry on top of the cake that was 2017, Joe and I finally moved into our own flat.

I started 2017 feeling low and unable to see how my life would pan out. I’ve started 2018 on the biggest high possible – in our own place, with our own plans and goals for the rest of the year and the next couple of years to come.

And, although I have goals for 2018 and beyond, they’re all quite vague. It’s a good thing for me, honestly – sometimes I get too fixated on goals and find it quite triggering to not “achieve”.

In 2018 I want to become more conscious of everything. I want to check in with myself and my mental health more, making a conscious effort to allow myself time to heal if it becomes necessary to do so. I want to reconnect with myself mentally and spiritually, paying attention to my moods and what causes them – getting to the source of everything.

I want to live and eat more consciously  – living more ethically by consuming less meat and dairy, using less plastic, and living less materialistically. I want to treat my body with kindness – eating to fuel my body and my mind rather than eating to change my body.

I, unfortunately, can’t exercise for the time being because of a bad knee, but I want to move my body in ways I can. Walking more places, yoga if possible.

I want to push myself to be who I want to be. I want to work hard, but not so hard I burn out. I want to assess what I want from life and start paving the path to get there.

If I were to set myself some actual goals, there wouldn’t be many. One thing I want to do more in 2018 is capture memories. I love taking photos and I do it a lot for my blog, but not enough for actual memories. This was made obvious to me when I did a little 2017 look back on Instagram Stories yesterday and I had to use staged Instagram photos for most memories. I want to look back at photos and remember the moments and the feelings in which I took them.

Another thing I want to do more in 2018 is have some time away from screens every now and again. Even if that just means reading books more on an evening to give my eyes and brain a rest. I work on a computer, come home and blog or watch TV then go on my phone in bed and it’s draining sometimes.

Basically, in 2018, I want to care less about things that don’t matter but care more about things that do. I started in 2017 and I’m just going to continue allowing myself to grow. I really feel like 2018 is going to be my year.

I can only hope this post made any sort of sense. Thank you all for being so incredible throughout the highs and lows of my 2017. I hope you’re excited for 2018, and I hope you stick around because I’ve never felt more myself and I’m excited for what that will bring to my content.



  1. 10th January 2018 / 9:17 pm

    You achieved SO much this year despite the tough times, and that’s most definitely something to be ridiculously proud of. I’m also working to become more in tune with myself this year – and if you too are looking for someone to share tips with/bounce ideas off, I’m ya girl! xxx

  2. 9th January 2018 / 10:00 pm

    Absolutely loved reading this gal – and so pleased that 2017 was a goodun for you. Definitely dont feel guilty about that, it will have been a great year personally for a lot of people even if lots of not-so-great things happened in the world. Cant wait to see what 2018 brings you! xxx

    Sophie | Sophar So Good

  3. 6th January 2018 / 6:15 pm

    I’m so glad you’ve had a good year Rhianna! I think it’s great to reflect on what we’ve achieved – I did this recently when I was in a bit of a slump and it made me feel so much better – http://www.daughterofanairhostess.com/2018/01/looking-back-on-2017.html

    You should be so proud of your 2017, it sounds wonderful and the way it sounds like you’re looking at 2018, this year is going to be a special one for you too! Massive congrats on the job and moving (so jealous of you ngl!) and I mentioned it on Instagram, but your blog has come leaps and bounds since I started reading and I still love reading what you’ve got to say!

    Daughter of An Air Hostess // Fashion, Travel & Lifestyle

  4. Chloe
    6th January 2018 / 5:39 pm

    It is not at all selfish to say 2017 was a great year for you, it’s lovely to hear you had great year!
    I loved reading this reflective style blog post xx


  5. Freya Fleming
    4th January 2018 / 12:48 pm

    “Basically, in 2018, I want to care less about things that don’t matter but care more about things that do.”

    That sentence really struck me. I think it’s something we all need to do this year – I know I do. I also have the same problem as you do, I tend to take pictures for the blog and the Insta, but never just for me. Or at least not often enough. It wasn’t part of my New Year’s resolutions (not that I really do those, but you get what I mean), but I’m going to make it one now. I loved reading this post, it’s so nice to sometimes read a blog post that’s not necessarily planned out but just chilled and real. I wish you all the best for 2018!


  6. 3rd January 2018 / 8:40 pm

    Girl, this is so inspiring. 2017 just got better and better for you; I’m so pleased that you and Joe are now in your own little flat together! I can’t wait to see what 2018 brings for you, you’re gonna absolutely smash it, girl. <3

  7. 2nd January 2018 / 6:57 pm

    This was so inspiring to read – it’s nice to see a more positive post about how the year has gone! I love your goal of capturing memories. I don’t really do this, but it would be nice to have a few more pictures to look back on of some good times spent with the family (and even my dog babies! I’m still upset that I don’t have many pictures of them when they were small. I have to ask my sister for copies). I’ll definitely be sticking around for more of your content as well. I feel like your blog is a breath of fresh air!

    Alicia | https://www.alifestyleblog.co.uk

  8. 2nd January 2018 / 2:10 pm

    Happy new year to you my love ! I am so happy that your year got better and better for you – I have loved seeing you achieve so many amazing things this year, you deserve every single one! Here’s to having an amazing 2018 – wishing you and Joe the best with your flat too!


  9. 2nd January 2018 / 1:14 pm

    This probably doesn’t help with the cutting down on screen time thing, but I’ve just downloaded one of those apps which allows you to record a second of video every day. I was better this year at recording the little things thanks to bullet journalling and a monthly blog series, and it meant that when the usual year-end anxieties hit I was able to properly reflect on the many wonderful things that had happened in 2017 and it calmed me down IMMENSELY. But I want to do this more. And take more stupid photos with my friends. I always feel awkward for asking. I need to get over that.

    Here’s to 2018, pet.

    Lis / last year’s girl x

  10. 2nd January 2018 / 12:26 pm

    Happy new year! I don’t think you should feel guilty for having had a great year. I had a fantastic year – I got married – and I don’t feel bad about it. Hope your 2018 is even better than 2017! x http://www.aimeeraindropwrites.co.uk x

  11. 2nd January 2018 / 12:23 pm

    I had a wonderful 2017 too as I had a turning point in my career and I loved it.
    Wishing you to have a way better 2018 :)

  12. 2nd January 2018 / 8:57 am

    I love this so much! I am so so glad that you ended up having such a wonderful year because you definitely deserved it after everything that happened. I definitely have some similar goals to you for the year – mainly switching off a bit more, not caring about pointless things and really looking after my mental health. So excited to see what 2018 has in store for you xxx

    Abi | abistreetx

  13. 2nd January 2018 / 3:00 am

    I want to live and eat more consciously too. It’s scary how quickly we are altering the state of our earth due to poor choices and excessive consumption, so that’s a major goal of mine. Congratulations on having such a successful 2017! I hope 2018 is amazing and fun and beautiful for you.

    Sharni xo
    A Girl & Grey

  14. 1st January 2018 / 10:02 pm

    SO happy for you that 2017 was such an incredible year. I love the way you described your stroll home on last NYE too – there really is a special feeling around it. I hope 2018 is amazing for you! :) xx

    Jessie | allthingsbeautiful-x

  15. 1st January 2018 / 9:32 pm

    I can relate to this a lot. Like yours, my 2017 was wonderful too which, like you said, feels weird and kind of wrong seeing as a lot of other people and the world in general didn’t have a great year.

    I’ve seen a few posts about new years changes rather than traditional resolutions which often get forgotten about after the first couple of weeks. I think it’s a great idea!

    I hope your 2018 is as good as, if not better than, your 2017! xx


  16. loveyouandthem
    1st January 2018 / 9:27 pm

    Great post lovely. Onwards and upwards!!!

    Keep smiling

    Cat xo

  17. 1st January 2018 / 5:53 pm

    Loved reading this post Rhianna. It’s lovely reading how your year turned out to be so amazing in the end. Happy new year & best wishes for 2018!!

    Claire | http://www.clairemac.co.uk

  18. 1st January 2018 / 5:49 pm

    You’ve really made the most of 2017! Here’s to a wonderful 2018! xx

  19. 1st January 2018 / 5:26 pm

    I absolutely loved this post. I’m glad 2017 went so well for you in the end, hope you have an amazing 2018!


  20. 1st January 2018 / 4:49 pm

    I am so incredibly proud of you this year Rhi! I know how hard you found the beginning of the year but seeing you make the most of everything despite a rocky start has been amazing. Can’t wait to see what 2018 brings for you! Love ya xxxx

  21. 1st January 2018 / 4:44 pm

    Aww Rhianna, this was such a lovely and heartwarming post, I’m glad your 2017 ended so wonderfully and that 2018 has started with you feeling so positive. It’s amazing how the year transformed so much for you, happy new year to you. xx

    Kristy | thevioletblonde.com

  22. 1st January 2018 / 4:25 pm

    Rhianna, this post is so lovely 💕​ I’m so happy 2017 turned round for you and you’ve definitely ended the year on a high. Here’s to a successful and happy 2018 and I can’t wait to see where the year takes you xo

  23. 1st January 2018 / 4:18 pm

    So lovely to hear you had a good 2017, and how you managed to turn the start of the year around and achieve so much in such a little time. It sounds like 2017 was just a warm up for this year! xx