As 2019 was coming to an end, I had nothing but high hopes for 2020. I was expecting signs that 2020 was going to jumpstart a great decade for me. Take more trips, make lovely memories, and experience breath-taking adventures. I had anticipations for buying a new house, purchasing a new vehicle, and taking my side hustle to the next level. And I would fill in all the other little details as the year went on.
To my surprise, I was in complete utter shock to discover 2020 clearly had other “plans.” I did none of the things that I was gearing up to do. After the first quarter, it was apparent that 2020 said, “Take a seat.” Like many people across the globe, my life veered off course from moderately to severely. With the pandemic, mass unemployment, quarantine, travel bans, racism, and yes, murder hornets, 2020 plainly said, “Take a seat… sit back and be still (literally).” LOL
Undoubtedly, 2020 wanted to teach me a few things, and it wasn’t being subtle about the lessons. Sadly, life events happen to teach something, push you to grow, or inspire you to do things differently. For me, 2020 was all of the above. I became more enlightened about myself, relationships, values, passions, life, and society.
Accepting and embracing that 2020 said, “Take a seat,” allowed me the opportunity to become more in tune with myself. Learning that it was really okay to be me unapologetically was so liberating. It’s so exhausting trying to be who others think you should be. Also, I really enjoyed working on myself in the area of self-care. I no longer let guilt settle in when making myself a priority. I threw away the notion that caring for myself makes me selfish. I’m done. (smiling)
I worked on deepening my connections with family and friends. What that meant for me was to carve out time for those that really matter in life. I made more phone calls, sent unexpected cards in the mail, and worked on truly being present. Time is practically at the top of the list for the most valuable commodity. All the money in the world couldn’t buy another minute. Don’t waste time on people that don’t add value. And it’s so important to nurture those close relationships and prune away the ones that are draining.
It became evident that it was time for me to take investing in myself more seriously. I made a conscious effort to devote my extra free time wisely, explore new financial investments, and invest in my health.
I’ve never done this before. When the pandemic hit, I religiously wrote in my monthly planner to account for my extra free time. I wanted to know how my free time was being utilized. (This has helped me out tremendously that I decided to continue tracking my extra free time for 2021.)
I already do have an IRA account, but I felt a nudge to do more investing. With a little research, I chose another money management company that will enable me to start investing in other various stocks and dividends. My mindset about money shifted when I heard a quote, “Don’t work for money; make it work for you.” (-Robert Kiyosaki, Rich Dad) I have so much to learn about stocks and dividends. But that’s okay. Every little step is worth it as I work towards my goal of building wealth. The money you invest today can save you tomorrow.
Because of the pandemic, I wanted to know as much as I could about protecting my immune system. I would peruse articles on health, vitamins, supplements, eating lifestyles, and exercise. I wanted to give myself the best fighting chance against this virus. I understand that having a healthy immune system is crucial to punching back when COVID-19 knocks you down. When the great lockdown was implemented, I quickly ran out to the pharmacy store to stock my health cabinet. What can I say? I’m a preparer. I can’t help it.
Here are other things that I squared up with myself in 2020 as I sat in my emotions and sat in my spirit.
- Slow down. I don’t have to be productive around the clock.
- Revamp… don’t be afraid to start over.
- Prepare to go another way. For me, I don’t expect going back to “normal”. Instead, I’m looking forward to my “new normal.”
- Set goals with small specific steps.
- Recognizing fear is a reaction, and courage is a decision.
- Control my anxieties before anxiety controls me. Regularly, I check in with my emotions.
- Don’t skimp on showing love to others because everyone we come in contact with is fighting their own battles.
- Some situations can’t be avoided, so I must brace myself. (yes, embrace the disruption)
- Stay focus on my purpose in times of chaos.
- Turn up the resilience. I can’t lay down and give up. I have to punch back!
- Stop letting the idea of perfection hold me back. Do it anyways and improve upon it as time goes on.
- I must first put my mask on before helping someone else get their mask on.
Last but certainly not least, I decided to stop running from a passion of my mine that I hid for decades. That is my love for writing. For many years, I would pick it up and put it down and bury it. Over the summer, the thought came to start a blog (again). I started a blog many moons ago, and I put it down. This time, I will hold myself more accountable and be consistent to see where it takes me. I genuinely have a newfound love for writing. Writing is exhilarating.
2020 has left a lasting impression that caused a sizable shift in my life. I confronted old patterns, excuses, and behavioral habits. I addressed how I was tired of doing more and getting more. I realized that it’s no longer about doing more or getting more, but life is about being more. I have a new` thirst for living on purpose with clarity, impact, and significance.
Change doesn’t always feel good. Many times, it doesn’t even look pretty. Let’s admit it. Change is downright MESSY. But God will allow disruption so that we can be freed from our comfort zone. In essence, so that we can change. Once out of the comfort zone, you’ll begin to see other avenues of untapped potential.
I cherish the many, many still quiet moments of 2020 that allowed me the freedom to reset, refocus, and replenish. I will forever hold dear the soul-stirring takeaways.
Thank you 2020!