OpEd: Life Lessons 2022 Has Taught Me

At the end of year 2021, I was recovering and dusting myself off from a complete mental breakdown. Although I was thankful for reaching new heights as a rising entrepreneur, I had to let go of the “booked and busy,”  “boss b-word,” “bag chaser,” “it photographer” mentality. It became unhealthy. Once I accepted that I could no longer hide behind my camera, that’s when I began to question my identity. That is when I looked in the mirror and was finally honest about what I wanted, who and what I had to let go of, so I could align myself with God’s assignment for me. 


So in hindsight, the year 2022 said, “Hold my beer, you need to learn a thing or two.” I want to share the lessons that 2022 has taught me as preparation for my “Year Of Receiving” in 2023.


  • When lifting weights use your mind to muscle connection to increase muscle contraction. 

I took my health more seriously this year as I was embarking on the 40s club in 12 months. So when I realized that weight lifting would give me the strength and physic I wanted, I learned it was mind over matter as they say. It is definitely a symbolism of life. With weight lifting you’re literally ripping your muscle fiber (known as “micro-tears”), which the body then repairs and adapts the muscles to better handle the stimulus that caused the damage. In life, we have to let go, tear down, or burn in order to rebuild and or create space for the new.

  • Human Connectivity is imperative

As we are now in a “post Covid” chapter, the one thing that all of us have come to realize (or accept) is that we need people. Even us introverts appreciate the commonality, complexity, and duality another human being can bring to our lives. Even if it is through Zoom or Streamyard. People really do make the world go ‘round.

  • Embrace rejection daily.

Now this may only work for me, but I have changed my perspective on being “rejected.” When I am feeling rejected, I look at as; I was being protected, I was being redirected, I was not ready, or its just not my time, YET. My grandma, the beautiful Barbara Johnson (may she rest in peace and continue to watch over me) would always tell me, “Amber, when you change the way you look at things, the things you are looking at will change.”


  • You only get what you give. WRONG, you only get what you ask for.

While I do believe that we must be the change we want to see in this world, we also have to speak, ask, and demand for the things we want. I would always believe that if people would see how “good” of a person I was they would be good to be or give me what I want. WRONG. Contrary to popular belief, that is a manipulative tactic. Simply, clearly, and with confidence, ask for what you want. And allow space for the other party to respond. Whether you get what you are asking for or not, at least you know where you stand. It cuts out any confusion and resentment.

  • Take complete ownership for every result in your life. The only constant in every result is you. 

Taking ownership of one’s life and their actions is the difference between a male and a man, female and a woman, a child and an adult. No more explanation needed.

  • Having a podcast was good (in theory) but we are all over it.  

The podcast ship has sailed and sucked in my honest opinion. I don’t think this way because it has become oversaturated (which it has), it is because the content quality has plummeted, and appears to only be a money grab now. It is now hard and time consuming to sift through podcast after podcast to decipher who deserves our more precious currency…or time, attention, and energy. WE ARE OVER IT.

  • Nobody owes you anything.

Once you get past the initial sting of this statement (which is actually your ego feeling), you will appreciate the freedom that comes with it. We have become such an entitled society that we lack gratitude. When you accept that nobody owes you a thing, you will appreciate your life and the people in it more. And even more importantly, you realize that YOU DON’T OWE ANYONE ANYTHING AS WELL. Feed your autonomy while respecting others.

  • You can tell a lot about someone’s character by how they treat service staff.

How a person treats anyone, but especially service providers is a direct reflection of how they treat and view themselves. And subsequently how they will treat you, good bad or indifferent.

  • Who you choose as a partner will determine your level of peace, wealth & happiness.

What’s understood doesn’t need further explaining.

  • Your best decisions come from stillness. Stillness is amplified in nature & meditation.

I have learned that during my early morning meditation and prayer during the rise of the sun is when I get clarity, answers, and ideas. Reading The Power of Now: A Guide to Spiritual Enlightenment by Eckhart Tolle taught me to no longer be afraid of being alone with my thoughts. That we are not our thoughts but instead we are the watcher of our thoughts, and that one of the greatest powers we have is the ability to master and command our minds.

  •  You can only get stronger when you face problems in life. Embrace the f*%king struggle.

As a recovering self-proclaimed avoidant (Hi, my name is Amber), I am here to tell you that avoiding problems will only cost and hurt you more. And trust me it’s not worth the cost. On the contrary, most times, I have experienced that when you face your problems head on, it’s never as bad as you think it is. In life, life is going to happen. We have and will fall from grace from time to time. But remember it’s not the fall that matters. It’s the recovery that counts.



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