“This Year My Goal Is To Be Prepared To Adapt To The Unknown”
2020 has forced us to slow down, take into account what really matters, challenge us, make us contemplate what we are thankful for, and remind us of what we are capable of.
I was recently re-watching a video I posted on Instagram last year in early January where I said, “I’m excited for this year. Jumping into 2020 and giving it all I got. I wish you a happy and healthy and wonderful 2020.” Of course, not knowing the world would be facing a global pandemic and basically be shut down by March. I started the year as many of us did, hopeful.
This time last year, many were cursing 2019 and celebrating the turn of the decade, looking forward to a brighter future. Now as we approach 2021, it can be hard to go back and remember just how excited you were for 2020.
While this year has been a very challenging year for so many, I can honestly say that it hasn’t been my worst year ever. Don’t get me wrong, I have had my share of challenges, but some of the things that have transpired this year have made it out to be perhaps one of my best; which is odd to say.
I see the memes on Instagram of people giving 2020 the big middle finger. GIFs of the Mother of Dragons standing with fire behind her and the quote reads, “2020 In A Nutshell”.Sure, you can chuckle, but why is it that a shit storm means we turn into a three-year-old throwing a tantrum saying, “I DON’T LIKE IT, GIVE ME A NEW ONE!”
I know that might sound harsh, especially for those that have lost so much this year, and that is not my intention. But the truth is, although this year has been one that many won’t regard as one of their best, there are some people who have had babies this year, gotten married, had promotions at work or bought their first home, who feel a bit guilty for not hating this year.
If you have read any of my blogs, you have seen me say over and over that I believe we become stronger by overcoming challenges. Not that it’s pleasant or easy, but you get to choose whether you can find any good in a situation, or you can just try to forget it and not reflect on anything positive about it.
The end of every year is a time to reflect on your most important lessons learned. As I reflect back on 2020, I think the two words I would associate with this year are embrace uncertainty.
I entered 2020 with a great sense of excitement, more clarity than I had in a long time, and purpose. I knew what I wanted out of the year, I hit the ground running and I was very focused on my goals and my vision for the year. By March, I had accomplished quite a bit and then, COVID-19 rocked our world and my plans quickly shifted.
Everyone’s activities would be restricted. Kids would now be learning virtually, your favorite stores and restaurants closed. Stay-at-home orders and mask mandates were put into place. I think the biggest lesson for many in 2020, is that nothing is certain.
This year has also made us miss connection, yet work harder to stay connected…
When the lockdown began, I immediately saw the mental and emotional health of many people I know diminish. However, I also saw people working harder to stay connected. I am an introvert who doesn’t thrive on constant interaction with people, but I can speak from experience about what it is like to feel alone.
Drinks out with friends were cancelled, but replaced by Zoom happy hours. Families who only used to gather on holidays are now scheduling monthly virtual meet-ups to stay connected. May we never again take for granted the relationships in our lives. This year should help teach us to value friendships and express our appreciation frequently.
2020 has taught us a lesson in empathy…
If we are all honest, we often become so immersed in our personal lives, that we don’t stop to think about what is happening in the lives of others.
However, this year as we were all Googling what was going on around the world, we saw the reality of just how delicate life is. As the death toll rose around the world, we all felt an overwhelming sense of sadness and heartache.
You may not have personally lost a loved one or friend or co-worker to COVID-19, however, I am sure you know someone that has been impacted by this deadly virus. This year has encouraged everyone to demonstrate empathy and compassion.
Instead of complaining about this year and counting down the days to January 1, I urge you to try to enjoy these last few days of 2020 and have a tiny sense of gratitude. Look for those little things that this year taught you. It can do wonders in preparing you to embrace the unknown 2021. Personally, I am thankful for this alteration in my perception.
When I think of saying goodbye to this year and hello to 2021, I can’t help but think of The Beatles song, “Hello, Goodbye”:
“You say yes I say no You say stop And I say go, go, go
Oh, no You say goodbye And I say hello Hello, hello I don’t know why you say goodbye I say hello Hello, hello I don’t know why you say goodbye I say hello”
So, I’d like to say thank you to the crazy, uncertain, shitty at times, yet interesting year known as 2020.