As we eagerly embraced a new decade almost a year ago, full of positivity and aspirations for the year ahead, we were blissfully unaware of what lay ahead. No one was prepared for 2020. I don’t know about you, but I’ve held on tight through a rollercoaster of emotions: denial, shock, panic, overwhelm and frustration. I’ve worked hard to change my mindset and replace these feelings with acceptance, but this year has universally challenged us all. It has pushed us to the limits in every way imaginable. It is not a year we want to repeat.
As we move into December and (hopefully) out of lockdown (again), like every month this year, it looks very different. December is usually a time for Christmas parties, laughter and sparkles. The usual rules don’t apply; we give ourselves permission to eat what we like, drink more and exercise less (if at all). As we embrace the month-long celebrations, we also take time to reflect.
We may not want to spend too much time reflecting on this year, but let’s not forget the other side to a typical December – the stress of trying to fit everything in, deciding which invitations to politely decline, managing work load, where to spend Christmas, fitting in the Christmas shopping. These festive dilemmas are a world away; they are problems we would actually love to have, but let’s not forget they were wearing us out.
It’s easy to look back with rose tinted glasses. Instead, let’s look back with a little logic and sense. This December is undoubtably like no other; Any diet and exercise plans may have gone out the window months ago. The usual rules haven’t applied to the entire year and if anything, the global pandemic has given us one hell of an excuse to go a little easy on ourselves.
As we momentarily reflect, let’s try and take something positive from 2020. You might have to dig a little deeper (right down to the very core), but I assure you it’s lurking there somewhere. What lifestyle changes were you forced to make?
We’ve been bombarded with restrictions. We’ve been fed a never-ending (and ever-changing) stream of rules on what we cannot do and when. We can’t be blamed for allowing the negativity to take over.
In the absence of the usual celebrations, use this time to work on your mindset. Instead of focussing on what you can’t do, look at what you can. This is an opportunity to reset thinking patterns and break old habits. We don’t know what Christmas is going to look like, but we have no choice but to make the best of it. As a nation, we’re pretty good at that. We can still make Christmas sparkle, we just have to be a little creative.
2020 will lead to regeneration. It is giving us all the opportunity to rebuild. We couldn’t carry on the way we were; we were exhausting the planet and ourselves. However long it takes, we will get through this. We will be stronger for it.
Let’s take comfort in the thought that this year is coming to an end.
Whatever 2021 entails, it’s going to be different.