A 20-something global citizen, entrepreneur, polyglot, and traveler. Here to inspire you to become better every single day. | IG: razanecherk

Reflections on a challenging, but transformative, year.

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Beep! Beep! — Beep! Beep!

I roll onto my right side to reach over and silence the rude awakening emanating from the phone on my nightstand.

After rubbing the sleep out of my eyes, I smiled, remembering that it was the morning of Friday, January 1st, 2021.

We were all excited for 2020 to end and I woke up that morning deciding it would be a great first day of the year.

I remember jumping out of bed, pulling my journal out from the drawer in my desk, and writing out the top five lessons I learned from the past…

A simple guide to setting goals that stick.

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What are your 2021 goals?

I’m still in a bit of a daze from the crazy year that was 2020 and have just started getting into my goal-setting in late January.

The typical resolution-making process goes something like this:

  • Looking at what’s wrong in your life
  • Promising yourself that you’ll get it together on January 1st
  • Setting practically impossible goals like losing 10 kilos in 2 weeks and vague ones like “do something that scares me every day”

However, while we manage to stick to our tasks and goals for the first few weeks, many of us eventually find ourselves…

On the beauty of keeping your life to yourself.

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I’m a millennial which means I’ve grown up with social media.

I remember my first forays into MySpace and Facebook. The silly, childish fights that were transferred from the playground to the internet throughout middle school.

I recall how much I enjoyed sharing my life on Instagram, snapping pictures of every meal and every vacation scene with the intention to publicize it.

“Here I am in front of this ancient building. I have no idea what the history behind it is, but I am sharing it for the world to know I have been here! Look at me!”

Over the…

Being a taxi driver in NYC isn’t for the faint of heart.

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My father used to work 70-hour weeks, starting at 4 AM, getting fellow New Yorkers and tourists where they had to go every single day, Monday to Sunday.

It seemed to me that my dad didn’t believe in weekends or rest for that matter, and I never understood how a human being could work so much and live to see 60.

My dad knows New York City like the back of his hand and can take you to the most unknown corners of this metropolis without a second thought.

As most children of immigrants will know, hard work and perseverance…

Coming to terms with a failed relationship is an opportunity for growth.

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“You need to wake up and realize that you deserve more, and there is more waiting for you out there.

Stop settling; it only tarnishes and corrodes your soul.”

― Lebo Grand

I want to tell you about a friend of mine. Let’s call her Aicha.

Aicha was a nice girl. She had a good head on her shoulders and walked with an air of such confidence that everyone envied her.

But she had a secret that she shared only with me: She was in a relationship that hadn’t been working out for years, but that she struggled to leave.

The habits and thoughts that mean you need a change

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“I hate my job,” she whispered to me, her head hanging in shame.

I was shocked by this admission from a friend I had known for almost a decade now. She always posted about her role on social media, how much she loved what she did and how close she felt to her colleagues.

It turns out she had spent years pretending she loved her job because she was scared to leave it.

Are you in a job you hate?

Do you dream of becoming a digital nomad, traveling the world, and not stressing for three hours because you can’t…

Traveling isn’t about finding yourself.

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As a child, I dreamt of traveling the world when I grew up.

I was always curious about what was out there, itching to explore other countries.

I was born a dual national and have been confused ever since when asked the question: “So which nationality do you identify with the most?”

And when I finally did travel, I realized it was my favorite, albeit expensive, activity.

The excitement I feel before a flight is this irresistible buzz that keeps me up at night for days, even weeks.

But, in my experience, traveling isn’t about finding yourself.

The concept of…

Death: The one certainty in life we constantly seem to forget.

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“It is said that your life flashes before your eyes just before you die. That is true, it’s called Life.”
Terry Pratchett, The Last Continent

I heard his voice outside my bedroom window only two days before his death and didn’t know that it would be the last time.

He was one of those neighbors you always heard.

Whether he was arguing with his wife, speaking loudly with his children, or teasing his grandchildren, he was someone you’d hear regularly, and it brought comfort to many of us in the building.

While our lives changed and each day went…

A sudden deterioration in your health might be the best wake-up call out there.

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It was the first week of December and I hadn’t been feeling well all week.

I was 23 and couldn’t breathe freely anymore. Every breath hurt and my lungs felt like they were burning.

My heart didn’t feel right and I had random palpitations that no doctor could explain.

I suddenly had no idea what was wrong with me.

My mother sat by me terrified, reading the Qur’an until it became gibberish and I couldn’t understand what she was even saying.

We went to the doctor. We did all the tests. I still couldn’t breathe properly.

I heaved and gasped…

I’ve never felt this desperate for a new year before.

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It’s fun having loved ones across the world. Just not when you can’t fly to visit them.

My background is Moroccan, so Christmas and New Year’s are not holidays I grew up celebrating.

However, over the last three years, I was lucky enough to celebrate both holidays in Greece with friends I consider like family.

I have fallen in love with these two holidays and usually, by now, I would already be packing to fly to Greece.

This year, I know things will be different.

I won’t get to eat buttery, cavity-inducing kourabiedes or sticky, chewy melomakarona.

I won’t get…

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