23 Dec Close the door quietly on 2020
This isn’t the year we had planned.
So much has been written about the challenges we have faced including Covid, Black Lives Matter, political upheaval and environmental disaster. I recently shared my thoughts on a client webinar about how we can stop and think about what this year has taught us, and I thought I would share some reflections and questions with you. I hope you find them useful and that you gain insights to take into 2021.
This year has been the hardest and most challenging year most of us have ever experienced. The impact of Covid, the fear we may get ill, the health impact on our loved ones and how we have navigated our way through new health guidance has been hard. At times it has felt I am living in a sci-fi dystopian movie where death rates, the R number and freedom of movement restrictions are part of my every day language. Not being able to fully grieve for the loss of loved ones, worrying about my own finances and having my freedom curtailed has all taken its toll. And yet there has been good.
I have learnt to be aware of where I focus, how do I look after myself, and to reflect on what am I learning. Stephen Covey’s circle of control, influence and concern has been my go-to framework:
- What can I control here?
- Who can I influence? How can I get heard? Who can I ask for help?
- Or is there genuinely nothing I can do? If so I accept that, give thanks for what I can do and move to a place of control or influence.
Thinking about you
This may feel indulgent, and I encourage you to think about your great qualities and strengths.
What five achievements are you most proud of?
What do these achievements say about you:
- your strengths
- your values
- your passions?
Imagine you have created a photobook of 2020
What would be your top five images?
- A visit
- A meal you made
- Your garden
- The view from your window?
Again what does this tell you about what’s important to you?
What are you thankful for this year?
I am thankful for so much – my health, my friends, my family, my garden, my work and seeing so much good around me.
What has helped you this year?
One aspect of this year I have focused on is my mental health, and this is what I have done:
- Making a ‘three things I must do today’ list
- Phoning a friend each week
- Regular mindfulness
- Sending ‘thinking of you’ cards
- Taking time each week to plan my week ahead
- Playing more music
How can you boost your own mental health in 2021?
What will my word of the year be?
Each year I have a word of the year. It gives me a guidepost, it energises me, it helps me to have focus and I keep it on my vision board. How can you find your word?
- List as many powerful words as you can
- Cross of all the ones that don’t energise you
- For each one left think about what 10 things can I bring into my life if I live by this word?
- The word that is the most motivating and easiest to list 10 is your word!
To wrap up the year
I am not slamming the door on 2020, it has been hard, challenging and I am grateful for so much. I am closing the door gently. Over the next week I will do some thinking about 2021 and weave in these summary questions.
- What am I leaving behind in 2020?
- What am I taking into 2021?
- What new habits will I create?
- Who can I enlist to help me?
I have been humbled on so many levels this year by bravery, people doing good and simple acts of kindness. Thank you to everyone that has reached out, sent me a message, who I have had a virtual coffee with and has been there for my wobbles and rants.
A huge thank you to all of our clients. We have navigated this year, changed our approach and created great work together.
And a huge heart felt thank you to all key workers – our wonderful NHS and all of you fab bunch working in public service to keep us safe.
And finally I finish with these wise words from Rachel Marie Martin from Findingjoy.Net
Don’t give up on this year.
Keep fighting for the good.
Keep showing up.
Keep giving back.
Keep being kind.
Keep being brave.
Keep trying new things.
Keep showing grace.
This world needs you
To believe in the good.