17 IN 2017: Learning To Have Fun & Other Life Lessons

An end of year musing on friendships, fashion and fun…

As the year draws to a close, I couldn’t be prouder and more satisfied with where 2017 has brought me. Each year brings its own tribulations, celebrations and soul shaping, but this year I’ve come out of it all feeling lighter, brighter and just all round content.

The reason for my state of euphoria? Quite simply; 2017 was the year I learnt to have f u n.

Whether that be fun with fashion, work, my daily routine, with friends, with creativity…with life itself. 

There’s a lot to be said for taking life seriously, but all the time? Girl, there’s no need for that.

I used to have this fear that if I stopped to have fun, it wasn’t the best use of my time/meant I had a poor work ethic. But what I had failed to realise is that as humans we need fun; to fuel our creativity, keep us inspired, give our minds and bodies a break.

This year I gradually started to make more time for the people who lit my fire, made me laugh and always lifted my spirits. I stopped feeling guilty for spending an hour talking about Drag Race on Facetime to my best friend Ali. Stopped feeling like a bad person for enjoying a leisurely Sunday brunch with a friend that stretched until 4pm.

And life just didn’t seem so overwhelming anymore!

Most significantly of all, in these last few months I’ve started drinking! All these years (and yes, that includes university), I was strictly teetotal. But what started out as avoiding alcohol for health reasons soon became a fear of letting go.

This year, I’ve enjoyed the odd glass of wine with a meal. I tried my first cranberry vodka on a night out. And guess what? Nothing horrendous happened. It’s taken me a while to catch up with what everyone knew all along, but it’s completely ok to enjoy a drink without feeling bad!

And then there’s the joy I’ve rekindled by having fun with fashion

I’ve always been known to go take my outfits that extra bit, but this year I’ve learnt to say hey, this part of who I am so why not take this all the way!’.

Putting together an outfit gives me so much joy that yes I will show up to our low-key coffee in bright pink tasselled earrings, winged liner and python print boots.

Building the confidence to show up as that ‘extra’ person and owning it has been one of my highlights of my year. And the impact that’s had on my creativity, confidence and happiness is astronomical. You guys seem to like it too, it speaks volumes that my most-liked Instagram photo of the year was this eleganza extravaganza situation. Here’s to creating more in 2018!

17 Lessons I Learnt in 2017…

Looking back at the same post I wrote for 2016, this year definitely feels like I’ve written a far ~deeper~ reflection. So to finish off, here’s 17 quick – but poignant nonetheless – things these past 12 months have taught me.

1. There will be things in life that suck, and more often than not you have zero control over them.

2. Don’t sweat this stuff. Accept that it’s out of your control and focus on what you can do.

3. Success is nice, but if it comes at the expense of your mental or physical health, is it really success?

4. Speaking of success, it’s up to you how you define it. It could be getting 8 hours of sleep every night, or just being happy in your own skin. The point is, it looks different to everyone.

5. Don’t forget to take each day as it comes.

6. You’re not a bad person for taking a night, a weekend or even a whole week off. You’re human.

7. There’s a difference between the things you’ve got to chase after (your dreams, goals) and those that will fall into place if they’re meant to be (relationships, people)

8. There is always new music to discover, books to read, art to fall in love with. Find solace in that.

9. The only point in looking back is to remind yourself of how far you’ve come.

10. Stop downplaying your achievements. Own them.

11. The same with your ideas. Sound them out, loud and proud and with the conviction of a white male.

12. Though it seemed impossible all those years ago, your heartbreak will fade and one day you’ll feel absolutely nothing

13. Stop saving things ‘for a special occasion’. Every day you get to wake up so make that the special occasion.

14. 99.9% of your worries are just figments of fear in your head. And they’re stopping you from being awesome.

15. No answer is the biggest answer of all.

16. You can be a diva and still be humble.

17. Most problems can be solved by simply asking yourself; is this me, am I being true to myself, does this bring me happiness?


knit dress – Zara (similar here) // tassel earrings – ebay // python ankle boots – TK Maxx (VERY similar here) // belt – vintage via charity shop (similar here)

Thank you to Ali for taking these photos and making a suburban parking lot look totally industri-cool. 

If you’re as partial to an end-of-year musing as I am, stay tuned because I have a few more 2017 round-ups to come!

Don’t forget I’m posting Saturdays, Sundays & mid week throughout December so be sure to follow my social channels (Facebook, Twitter, Instagram) for content alerts!

What did 2017 teach you?

Sinéad xo