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As the clock struck 12AM on New Year’s Eve, wishes started pouring in from different parts of the world wishing your family a happy and prosperous new year and a great year ahead. As 2020 started, we all felt that this year would just be like any other calendar year and all of us were gradually getting habituated to writing “01.01.2020” instead of “01.01.19”. Two or three months passed and later came the “COVID-19” followed by the “all out lockdown”. In fact, this lockdown has shown us the other unseen side of life. All of us realized the importance of work-life balance, where you are working from home and working for home! Children got exhausted, parents were occupied, elders had no way out and in between all this chaos and disarray, some of us had panic attacks and emotional disturbances.
While this pandemic showed us the other side of life, it likewise told us the best way to value and esteem our lives. Oh yes, this lockdown and the pandemic has shown us, rather the most difficult way possible, about life. We have shared quotes, statements and forwards about the importance of leading our lives the way we want to and how essential it is to live the moment and so on. Yet how many of us have really done that than simply getting along with the routine? It’s been 4 months into 2021 and almost 9 months of 2020 have gone by trying to stay home and stay safe, which has become the new mantra of life. The thought and idea of “easing down” reached us only during these 9 months at home; till then, we were all chasing our “dreams and fantasies” and attempting to compete with the other that we neglected to delay to pause and catch our breath! The idea of taking care of others hit us hard during these 9 months, even if we had to connect virtually.
There were days when we yearned for a break and when we get that break, we are unable to enjoy it. There were days when we wanted to laze around at home doing absolutely nothing and still appreciate it except for whenever we got the opportunity, we were unable to do it for more than 3 days. We easily got bored of it. However, one thing that has not changed over the last 1 year is how fear and anxiety has now become a part of our lives. At first, we were all on edge due to the uncertainty that lay ahead yet in due course, we have all figured out how to acknowledge the reality and get over the anxiety. That is life – it is not about the number of rocks you have hit to reach your destination. It is about how you have cleared your path through them and 2020 is an exemplary example of this lesson.
On a lighter note, this pandemic has definitely drawn out our interests. We must have seen the works and performances of many chefs, artists, dancers and writers who are actually doctors, engineers and corporates by profession. It seems that we have discovered what we truly prefer to do. At the end of the day, the only thing that matters is what you like to do and your happiness and bliss while doing what you like!
There is a ton of qualities that 2020 has taught us about ourselves, our relationships, our passions, interests and our values.
Try not to waste your life sitting tight for the ideal time. The right time to change jobs, buy a new house, start a new hobby or plan an outing with your friends will never arrive with thoughts alone. Take the leap and do the thing rather than trusting that life will cruise you by. The year of 2020 definitely taught all of us that life is too short.
You need darkness in order for there to be light, thus having everything closed, dropped and detracted from us has re-sparked the joy and delight of small, happy and cheerful moments. The manner in which the sun shines through autumn foliage. A still moment of respite discovered savoring coffee in a bright and sunny window. Biting into a piece of toast dipped in tea. We didn’t think too much of these things in 2019, but in 2020 they turned into our moments of true happiness and genuine satisfaction.
It can be funny as well as interesting how difficult and troublesome times show us the reality about life and about the people around us. Did any of your relationships or friendships fizzle out or renew during 2020? Possibly the Zoom video calls were an opportunity to reconnect with friends on the other side of the world, or perhaps you understood the people you invested the most time with didn’t add much value or inspire you.
Do the things that ignite your heart. The year 2020 taught us that life doesn’t wait for anyone, so why waste your valuable hours accomplishing something you don’t feel enthusiastic about? The appropriate response is probably money. In any case, if you can’t quit your job and change professions tomorrow, then discover joy and bliss. Also set aside a few minutes for hobbies you are passionate and energetic about.
Without giving it much thought, it tends to be difficult to spot, yet there is quite often a silver lining of opportunity. Hopefully that excess turned into a chance to transform that side task into a full-time hustle. Hopefully that shut workplaces and schools implied more time with your children and money saved on the commute. Hopefully more time at home has implied more opportunity and greater freedom to nourish and support yourself with home-cooked meals.
There’s no time like right now to simply act naturally and be yourself. When they say you can become anything you desire, it is valid. Your only breaking limit is you. You can be anything and you can change course at age 30 or 70. Age doesn’t matter. Age is only a number! The main thing is that you can’t be everything. Whatever it is that you decide to do and be, ensure that it is your decision and not what your parents, partner, family or friends think.
One of the greatest joys of life is to learn and acquire new skills, new languages, new recipes, new crafts, new sports and new cultures. When the world halted around us, all of us probably discovered ways to keep exploring from home. Some of us experimented with new recipes from cuisines we hadn’t tackled before. Some must have brushed up on a foreign language or learnt new skills for their self-development.
From trusting our gut feelings better to reconsidering old issues from a new perspective and remembering that being human is often as important as being right, we have found some positive and inspiring lessons to take from this challenging, never normal year.
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