The Herald asked people who made the news this year to tell us what they've learnt in their own words.
Simone Anderson famously lost 92kg. In 2014 the Auckland-based makeup artist decided it was time to trim down, after tipping the scales at 169kg.
In 2017 Anderson revealed her brutal gang rape in an attempt to show other women they are not alone in their experiences of sexual abuse as part of the "me too" campaign.
This year I have learnt that you can re train your brain to turn your insecurities and weaknesses into your greatest strengths.
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A little bit of work each day and lots of self-love and affirmation can turn those things about ourselves we never thought we could accept or love into things we now wouldn't want to be without.