2021 Year in Review + Thank You

I’ve always recognized the importance of reflection. When I stop and think back to all that happened in 2021, I feel grateful. I’ve learned a lot, stepped out of my comfort zone, grown as a person, and matured very quickly. Of course, this year and my life is not perfect, however I think it is important to focus on the good and to live a positive life. Today, I wanted to share my 2021 highlights! Some wonderful things have happened in my life this year; some you may know about, and others you may not. Please keep in mind that while I am only sharing the good, that doesn’t mean that every day was perfect.

  • Went hiking once a month for twelve months

If you have been following my blog since my first “Year in Review” from 2019, you would know that earlier that year, my uncle and I decided that we wanted to hike at least once a month for the entire year. Since then, we have succeeded in doing exactly that. This year, I was away from home for a while, so I was doing my hiking elsewhere (I’ll get to that soon…). Other than the time I was away, we went back to some of our favorite hiking spots in our area. Our hikes aren’t always incredibly intense, but we really enjoy getting some fresh air. I especially love our hikes in spring and fall because I think the weather is just perfect; not too hot and not too cold. A couple other family members have also joined us on a hike or two this year! I am looking forward to continuing this tradition in 2022!

  • Celebrated my five year fitness anniversary

Fitness has looked very different to me this year. Since we are still living in a pandemic and things seem to be very up and down, I decided not to go back to the gym this year. I really do miss the environment and feeling of working out in a gym. I find it to be much more motivating, and I think I work my hardest when in the gym. Although I am fully vaccinated and had my booster for COVID, I felt it was best to continue working out at home. I have been doing weight training, yoga, and some HIIT. As the year has gone on, I’ve found it difficult to do certain workouts. While I was away from home, I really did not do any weightlifting. I am trying to find a way to continue doing the workouts I love while traveling, but it is challenging. Despite this, I have been working out more often now that I am home again, and I truly do love the way it makes me feel! When I complete a workout, I feel strong, confident, and empowered. So, in the New Year, I will continue weight lifting, doing my daily yoga, and throwing some HIIT in there as well! Yoga is pretty much a part of my daily routine, and I’ve recognized some incredible benefits. It helps that it can be done anywhere and everywhere, so there are no excuses! I am hoping that 2022 will be the year when I can finally get back in the gym and feel on track again.

  • Graduated from Queens University of Charlotte

I really can’t believe how fast my four years of college went by! I remember first stepping onto campus for a tour, and also for my first day. It was a lot of hard work, and I remember feeling stressed and overwhelmed as each new semester started. It got easier every year. In many ways, I really enjoyed my time at Queens. I really grew as a person, and I was able to do things that I don’t believe I would’ve had the opportunity to do had I chosen a different school. I met some great people, learned so much about my chosen career path, grew as a writer, and I traveled abroad. Most of all, Queens has given me the confidence and preparation to step out into the real world. I graduated in May with honors, and this is an achievement I will always be proud of. Also, I am SO thankful to be done with school!

  • Traveled out West

My family has had plans to travel somewhere very special since 2020, but of course, that trip had to be canceled. It was canceled yet again this year, however we were still able to do some traveling around the country! It felt so nice to go on a vacation again! In June, we traveled out west to a few places we had never been to before. I won’t go into detail since I wrote an entire blog post about the trip (linked here), but I will say that it was incredible! I really enjoyed seeing Badlands, Mount Rushmore, Yellowstone, and the Grand Tetons! Yellowstone has always been on my bucket list, and I was so excited that I was finally able to go and experience this magical place in person. I had never seen anything quite like it! If you have the opportunity to go, I highly recommend it. You will enjoy every moment, and there is SO much to see and do there. Also, Grand Teton National Park is the most beautiful place I have ever seen! I am not sure if I had ever even heard of it before, but it is now one of my favorite places. Being there felt like I was surrounded by one giant painting. It was surreal. It is also right next to Yellowstone, so if you are going in that direction, you can’t miss it! This trip allowed my family and me to travel to a few different states such as South Dakota, Montana, and Wyoming. It is a goal of mine to travel to all 50 states, and I am almost there!

  • Started my career working in marketing

I remember so many people saying that once you graduate from college, it can be really difficult to find a job in the field you want. I was fully prepared to work in retail or in a similar job before actually working in the field I studied four years for. Earlier in the year, I applied to a few jobs, but they were not for me. Then, I happened to get an email in June that I was invited to an interview. The timing couldn’t have been any more perfect. I felt really confident about it, and I got the job! It is a remote job for a marketing company, and I am surrounded by skincare! I really enjoy what I do. My job involves: moderating our social media, creating content (photos, reels, tiktoks, captions etc.), and communicating with some of our partner skincare brands. I was also just given a new title with more responsibilities. I am now a Marketing Communications Specialist! I am looking forward to seeing where my career takes me in the New Year.

  • Celebrated one year with Tom

On July 22, Tom and I celebrated one year of our relationship! Sadly, we were apart at that time, so our celebrations occurred over a video call. We made the best of it though, and very soon after that, we were finally together in person. I couldn’t believe that a year had gone by, but we were and are so thrilled and excited for many, many more years together!

  • Traveled to England to see Tom (twice)

For the past couple years, I’ve made it a goal for myself to get out of my comfort zone more often. When making this goal, I wasn’t sure what I would end up doing down the line, but looking back, I am proud of my courage. For a start, I traveled with my university to France, which was a dream come true. And this year, I traveled completely on my own for the first time to go and see the love of my life. What I thought would be a terrifying and intimidating experience turned out to be amazing. Not everything went right (for example, my luggage was lost for a bit and my flight was changed), but I somehow got through it all and ended up in London to meet Tom in person for the first time after waiting for a little over a year! Since then, I traveled back to England once more. I had never spent so much time away from home or my own country. In 2022, I plan on doing some more traveling, and it is still a big goal of mine to do the things that scare me, because it is always worth it in the end.

  • Celebrated two years of “Compass to Confidence”

I truly can’t believe that I have been blogging for two years now! I still love it as much as I did in the beginning, even though I have not been doing it as often. My life has been a bit busy lately, but I will always enjoy and love having this space to share whatever is on my heart. I am grateful to be able to share my passions, give tips, and inspire others to become confident through my words. It is my mission to guide my followers to confidence, and I will not give up on it. My blog has even allowed me to gain more confidence in myself, and I couldn’t be prouder of how far I and my blog have come. I am looking forward to the content I will make in 2022, and I hope you will continue to follow along on the journey!

  • Got engaged

Last but not least, the biggest highlight of all: Tom and I got engaged! After speaking about engagement and marriage for a while, Tom proposed to me on November 24th soon after we arrived in the US. I always imagined what that moment would be like in my life, and it couldn’t have been any more perfect. From the very beginning, even before we started dating, I never had a doubt in my mind. I knew that he was the one for me very early on. I have never felt anything quite like Tom’s love before, and it was and always will be so special and precious to me. I am grateful to have found my forever person. Now… who is going to help me plan the wedding?!

This year has taught me so much, and overall, it has been wonderful and very enjoyable. I am looking forward to accomplishing more of my goals in 2022, and I can’t wait to bring you along with me. I will be sharing more about fashion, beauty, fitness, travel, entertainment, and more about my personal life! I also wanted to say thank you to those of you who have read my blog posts this year. Whether you have been following along from the beginning, or you are new to Compass to Confidence, thank you. Writing and inspiring others has always been my biggest goal in life, and every time I upload a blog post, I feel like I am reaching that goal. I am forever grateful. Be on the lookout for a blog post in the New Year, and I wish you all the best in 2022! Until next time…

Graduation Day Outfit Ideas + Tips

Hey everyone! It is that time of year when seniors are preparing to graduate. I will be graduating from my university on May 8th, and I could not be more thrilled! This exciting time has inspired me to create today’s blog post! I will be sharing five different graduation outfit ideas as well as some tips for the big day!

I am aware that different schools have unique and specific rules on what to wear and not to wear for graduation, so you can modify each of these outfits depending on said rules. I will be sharing some tips and advice throughout this post that can be extremely helpful so there are no wardrobe malfunctions or issues with your graduation cap!

Before getting into the outfits, I wanted to discuss the many different graduation cap and gown colors. For my high school graduation, my cap and gown was purple. For college, it is black. I would recommend sticking to neutral colors if your cap and gown are bright colors or pastels (red, purple, green, light blue, etc.). If it is white, you would want to stick with a light colored dress underneath (anything bright and/or patterns should be avoided). If it is black like mine, you pretty much can’t go wrong! You can go with something bold and fun, or simple and pretty. If your cap and gown is black, you can even wear one of your school colors underneath. I’ve also seen people match their tassel to their dress (if the tassel is a different color from the cap and gown). I will be doing an ootd (outfit of the day) for my own graduation dress, so be on the lookout for that soon!

Let’s get into the outfits!

Outfit #1:

This first dress is very feminine and pretty! I love pastel colors, and of course I had to go with pink! Mini dresses are always a great choice for graduation day, and I love that this one is so comfortable and cute! The little flower details add such a nice touch to an otherwise simple mini dress. Since this detail is minor, it will not be seen while the gown is over it. You want to avoid dresses with big/3D details so that your gown can flow seamlessly over your outfit underneath. For the shoes, I went with a pair of short nude block heels. These are very easy to walk in and they look very stylish as well. If you are required to wear closed-toe shoes, you can always opt for a pair of closed toe heels, ballet flats, or a nice pair of loafers. Try to keep the shoes dressy, even if you do choose to wear flats. Neutral colored shoes are often best as well, however this may depend on the cap and gown color.

Outfit #2:

This next outfit is all about the midi dress. I am such a major fan of midi dresses; I feel that they are often so classy and elegant. One thing to keep in mind is that your graduation gown is most likely going to reach your calves, so I would recommend trying on your desired dress with your gown or measuring the length of both to make sure that the dress does not go past the gown.  I chose to go with navy blue this time, and once again, the dress is very comfortable and I don’t feel constrained while wearing it. There is a subtle lace design all over this dress and it also has a cutout on the back, brought together with a bow. For the shoes, I chose to wear my black block heels; these are a little taller than my nude ones. Once again, if you would like to wear flats, you absolutely can, and think about the possibility of a closed-toe shoe (if needed).

Outfit #3:

White dresses are always a very popular choice for many graduates, and it looks amazing under every cap and gown color! There are a variety of styles out there, and there are so many affordable options! This is a great choice for anyone! I chose this white crochet lace dress. It is strapless, however I would not recommend this because there is a chance that it can slip down underneath your gown, so try to go with sleeves or straps instead! This is also a midi dress, but it is on the shorter side, so it works very well! I went with the same nude heels from the first outfit to complete the look. When I tried this dress on with my cap and gown, I could definitely see why the color is a popular choice; it looked stunning!

Outfit #4:

Next, I decided to go for something bold. For any of you ladies out there who have a black cap and gown, red is a fantastic and beautiful choice! It works even better if your school colors include red, however it would look great regardless. This mini dress is flowy and fun, and it has small cutouts right above the waist. The shape of this dress is also very flattering to any body type! I chose to go with black block heels for this look. I normally do not wear bright colors too often, however wearing red is a statement and it makes anyone feel and look confident!

Outfit #5:

Lastly, I changed things up a bit and went with a romper rather than a dress! Rompers can be very comfortable while still very stylish! The one pictured here is navy blue, with a unique v-notch neckline. This is also a strapless romper, however I am simply sharing an example and I don’t think strapless is the best choice (unless you are absolutely positive that it will stay up). This romper also looks like it can be a dress, which is one thing I really like about wearing them! If you want to show off a bit more leg after stepping off of the stage, something like this may be perfect for you! With this outfit, I went with a pair of silver peep toe heels. The heel of this shoe is pretty short, and they look very chic as well.

Before you walk across that stage, remember to…

  • Bobby pin your cap to your head

When I was graduating from high school, the teachers were giving the girls bobby pins so that our caps were not slipping around or falling off during the ceremony. This was such a great hack and it worked so well! If your cap is a lighter color, you may want to stick to a lighter colored bobby pin. If your cap is a darker color, stick to the darker bobby pins.

  • Use a safety pin to keep your chords in place

 If you have received a graduation chord or chords to wear for the big day, make sure to take a safety pin and poke a small hole through each chord and pin them to your gown at the back of your neck. By doing this, it will stop your chords from sliding to one side, and they will stay even for the entire ceremony! This was another great hack I learned at my high school graduation, and I was even helping some of the other girls with this!

  • Wear comfortable shoes

If you are not used to wearing heels, I highly recommend wearing flats to your graduation. Walking in heels can take some getting used to, and you do not want to trip or fall as you walk across the stage. If you are a pro and you wear heels all the time then I say go for it, however if you even question it, I would go for flats just to be on the safer (and more comfortable) side.

  • Wear sunscreen

I know this isn’t a fashion hack, but it is so important, especially if your graduation is going to be outdoors like mine. Even if the sun is not shining, you should be applying sunscreen. You can do this before applying your makeup, and this way you can protect your skin while you’re seated and waiting for your name to be called. Remind your friends and families who are coming to support you to do the same!

  • Make your lunch/dinner reservation

Also unrelated to fashion, but still important! If you are hoping to go out to eat after your ceremony, be sure to book your table in advance. Many places will get booked very quickly due to the fact that graduation ceremonies are typically held on the weekends and that every graduate will be eating out in the area as well.

I really hope that you found these tips helpful and that these outfit ideas have inspired you in some way! Remember to take a deep breath, relax, and enjoy your graduation day! Everything will go well, and you will look amazing! To my fellow 2021 graduates, I am wishing you the best on your journey going forward, and congratulations!

If you are interested, you can also check out my Instagram, @sacchere14 to see my latest reel wearing each of these outfits! Until next time!

My 2021 Goals and Resolutions

Happy New Year everyone! I am very excited for 2021 and all that it has in store for us! I know that 2020 was a very difficult year for so many people, but I truly believe that things will be better this year, and that there is so much to look forward to!

I always get so excited when a new year begins because I feel so much hope for what’s to come. I also start thinking about goals I would like to reach and resolutions I would like to make. I know some people tend to laugh at the idea of “resolutions” because it is common for people to forget about them as the months go on, but I happen to be very determined, and I am not the kind of person who gives up easily on things that I really want. With that being said, I would really like to share some of my 2021 goals and resolutions with you all!

  • Go hiking once a month for twelve months

If you have been following me for a while, you may recognize this goal. This is something that my uncle and I have been doing for two years now, and we plan to continue again this year! I have a love for nature, and going on hikes really helps me to stay present and even get some exercise outdoors! We don’t live in an area that has too many intense hikes, but in the past, we have been able to go to a few different places. While I love a gorgeous mountaintop view, there is something serene and beautiful about flatland hikes as well. I am looking forward to another year of monthly hikes!

  • Stop procrastinating

I always knew that I was a bit of a procrastinator, but I didn’t realize just how much until recently. I noticed that I was putting off every little thing (even some things that I wanted to do). I started to get frustrated with myself! I recognized that if I keep making excuses for not doing these things, I will obviously never get them done. Whether it is cleaning or writing, I really want to stay focused and get on track to reach my goals. So, this year I want to stop making excuses and get things done, no matter how small.

  • Stay organized

I was looking back at my goals and resolutions from last year and realized that I wrote the exact same resolution for 2020. I wouldn’t say that I am very messy or someone who is completely disorganized, but I could definitely work on it. I tend to be a bit more organized with my school work, but at times, I will forget to do something small. I am not so organized with my room, so I have a plan to clean and organize my space once a week (including my bathroom). If life is stressing me out, a messy room can add to that stress, so I would like to keep things as tidy as possible. I also really love to plan things out, so ever since I got to college in 2017, I’ve kept a planner. Even though I’ve mostly used it for school in the past, I decided that this year, I would use it for everything in life. I want to write down any and all plans for the day/week/month, and I feel that by doing this, it will keep me on track. I love crossing things off my list, and it can feel really great and satisfying after a productive day.

  • Say positive affirmations daily

I have been on my self-love journey for quite some time now, and I am really proud of how far I’ve come. Of course, self-love can be difficult at times, but it is important to keep going. I feel like I stopped doing this for a while, so I decided it would be good to start saying positive affirmations again. It can be really beneficial to start your days off with positive thoughts about yourself or about how you want your day to go. You don’t have to say them out loud, but as long as you are thinking them, that is all that matters. Your mind is a very powerful thing, so what you believe, you will become. I’ve noticed that I will bring myself down at times by discussing the things I don’t like about myself. We’re all human though, and we all have things we may not necessarily love about ourselves, and that is ok. As long as you are working on loving yourself, then one day, those flaws will no longer negatively affect you. I hope to speak positively about myself more often, even if it is just in my own head. Remember: confidence is different than cockiness. Yes, it is amazing to love yourself, but you should never walk around thinking that you are better than anyone else.

  • Prioritize my overall health

As many of you know, I am very much into fitness. I have a plan to try to stay on track this year. In 2020, I ended up losing my motivation, especially in the second half of the year. My gym was not open for most of the year, so I was stuck with at-home workouts (and I still am). So, my plan is to do weight training and HIIT at least four times a week, and to continue doing my daily yoga. I have set up a workout split and I am hoping to get my motivation back once again. Hopefully sometime soon, I can go back to my gym, but for now I think it’s best to stay safe and stay home. Healthy eating has always been a bit of a challenge for me. I first started eating healthier in 2018, but over the past couple of years I realized that I was getting so bored of my usual healthy meals and snacks that I slowly stopped thinking about eating healthier. This year, I want to try to change things up a little bit, and find new ways to eat better. Of course, I won’t be jumping into it too quickly, but I really want to put healthy and delicious foods into my body, because I have experienced the overall benefits. I am also going to continue focusing on my mental health. I’ve been in a really great place these past few years, so I will do my best to continue taking care of myself in all ways. Happiness looks beautiful on anyone and everyone!

  • Weekly pamper nights

Sometimes we just need a little self-care. I recently bought a few new items to add to my pamper routine, and I am so excited to use them! I decided that I would have a pamper night at least once a week. While outer beauty isn’t everything, it is nice to keep up with my appearance, and it makes me feel beautiful and confident when I do. On this day, I can take my time, using things such as body scrubs, hair masks, and nail polish to make me feel pampered. Everyone deserves some time for themselves, and if you use that time to take care of yourself, it’s even better!

It is only the second day of 2021, and I have already learned quite a bit. I was speaking to my best friend and I was talking about New Year’s resolutions, and I questioned why we all wait until January 1st to start forming these new habits. It can be difficult and nearly impossible to change your life overnight. If anything, we should start in December! If you’re feeling a bit overwhelmed or upset because you are struggling to turn things around and do better this year, you aren’t alone. Take it day by day, and don’t be too hard on yourself. It is important to be motivated and inspired, but of course this can come and go. Take your time forming these new habits, but stay disciplined. You don’t have to have it together all the time, but you should do your best to accomplish your goals, and work on bettering yourself daily.

Thank you all so much for reading my first post of 2021! I am feeling very inspired to create some fun and interesting content for you all this year! Everything from beauty and fashion, to fitness and health, to travel and entertainment! If you haven’t already, I would really appreciate it if you would subscribe to my blog, and share it with friends and family! I am wishing everyone a happy, healthy, and safe New Year!

What are some of your goals and resolutions for 2021? Leave me a comment below!