10 LESSONS I LEARNED FROM 2020

As 2020 comes to an end (finally), I have been reflecting on a lot of different things that have happened throughout the year. 2020 had a myriad of challenges, triumphs and surprises. Part of me feels like we are still in March back when everything shut down, and part of me is so ready to begin anew. It is easy to think about all the bad that has happened this year, but TBH I am thankful for all the lessons I have learned. Some were easier than others, but they all really put things into perspective.

  1. BEING HAPPY WITH MY HOME IS MORE IMPORTANT THAN I REALIZED.

At the beginning of quarantine I had a very un-ideal set-up at home. I had no desk for school, my living room was extremely dysfunctional and I was struggling mentally with being stuck inside. After I decided to purchase what I needed, and spruce up what I had, my life was all the better for it. I found I was much happier and I was able to accept my situation after I was happy with the rooms I inhabited.

2. RESTING IS PRODUCTIVE.

This is something that I had struggled with for years. I have a chronic back condition, and there are days where I literally can’t move for hours at a time. Every time I stopped to just rest in bed, I always felt that I was doing myself a dis-service because I wasn’t being “productive”. This year has definitely taught me that resting is not only good for my mental health, but also it is productive for my body.

3. I NEED TO GIVE MYSELF MORE CREDIT.

This was one of the biggest take-aways from 2020. I can handle much more that I like to give myself credit for. I have survived a lot of things, especially this year, that I didn’t think I would be able to handle. My mind often gets the better of me, but it is time that I start living up to my potential, and realize that I can handle anything life throws at me.

4. I AM MORE MOTIVATED IN A CLEAN ENVIRONMENT.

I cannot get anything done when I am around a mess. Quarantine at my house has definitely seen some really messy days, and in those days I was extremely unmotivated to do a single thing. When I am surrounded by a clean space, I am much more likely to do what I need to do instead of sitting on the couch binging Netflix.

5. I WILL NEVER APOLOGIZE FOR HOARDING HAND SOAP, HAND SANITIZER AND CANDLES EVER AGAIN.

I use to be so embarrassed by my hoarding of these things, but no more. I never once ran out of soap or hand sanitizer during 2020. It was such a blessing to not worry about sanitization on the go. I also learned that candles are very comforting to me. I blew threw my stash early on, and stocked up again mid-year.

6. INVESTING IN TECHNOLOGY IS IMPORTANT.

I am the type to only replace computers and phones when they are on their last leg. I fortunately had upgraded both in 2018/2019 and I am so thankful I did. I can’t imagine how stressed I would be if my laptop and/or phone were on their last leg this year when everything went virtual. I probably would have cried a lot more. I am an avid Apple fan and people would always judge me for wanting “boogie” technology, but I always would respond with it’s worth it to know my products will last. I stand by that more than ever.

7. I’M VERY HAPPY COOKING ALMOST EVERY MEAL.

During this year I mostly never left my house. The one place I would visit consistently was the grocery store. TBH if I was still working I would never had gone as frequently as I did in 2020 because I would be eating out way more. I realized that I love buying produce and cooking. I really enjoy making meals and getting creative with leftover produce. Don’t get me wrong, I still love eating out, but I am perfectly okay eating out less.

8. SELF CARE MAKES A HUGE DIFFERENCE.

I have never been the best at self care because I always felt too busy to do it. This year really forced me to lean into self care with all the hard things I faced. I have learned that it’s okay to not be okay, and that it’s okay to do what ever makes you feel better. I personally have treated myself more to home decor, jewelry, and Disney related items this year. These things gave me joy daily and therefore an investment into my self care. On days when I felt overwhelmed, I could pull out a straw charm and Disney cozy to put on my coffee and I instantly was happier. It’s all about doing little things for yourself to make your soul happy and stay sane.

9. DEALING WITH ANXIETY IS A JOURNEY.

My anxiety was pretty much a roller coaster ride in 2020. There was so much unknown that we all faced this year, and for me it caused several spirals into anxiety. I have learned to accept that it’s okay to fear the unknown and that when I am feeling anxious it’s okay because these are hard times. I learned that there will be days where I am perfectly fine and there will be days I am not. It’s all part of the journey and every time I come out of an anxiety spiral I grow and get stronger.

10. BEING KIND AND CARING IS VERY POWERFUL.

I remember back in March the first time I went to the grocery store after lockdown. I had a travel sized pack of wipes with me. I was standing outside wiping down the cart handle when a lady walked up and realized there were no more wipes in the store’s dispenser and started to walk away. I called out to her and offered her a wipe from my pack. She burst into tears and thanked me. It was one of the most powerful things I experienced this year. Something so simple as giving a lysol wipe to a stranger was so meaningful to them. I will be honest, I am rarely on the receiving end of random kind acts, but I actively try to do them everyday for strangers. When I became sick with COVID, I was most definitely on the receiving end, and it made me very emotional. When people care, it is a very powerful thing.

I am not one to really make New Years resolutions, but I have always been a fan of reflection for the new year. 2020 has definitely taught me a lot about myself. I hope you all are staying safe, and are able to leave behind all the bad things this year has brought. There is hope that things will be better soon. I truly believe that we have the ability to make 2021 a better year.

– Lyndsay

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