What is 2020?

2020 has been a year like no other. The COVID-19 pandemic disrupted and disturbed many aspects of our lives. We learnt new phrases like social distancing, and covering your face in public spaces became mandatory. We had to learn about ourselves and each other in confined spaces. I don’t think anyone was prepared for how great this year would be. In this post I will talk about the 3 things that encompass my 2020 so far.

GREAT/ɡreɪt/ adjective

1. of an extent, amount, or intensity considerably above average.”the article was of great interest”

2. of ability, quality, or eminence considerably above average.”the great Italian conductor”

  1. NEW SKILLS

With the removal of all the things that distract us from our thoughts and relationships, many of us used our time in quarantine to learn something new. For example, parents were forced to become teachers when schools closed and I’m sure they discovered a newfound respect for the profession too. According to my Instagram feed and all the empty flour shelves in supermarkets, March and April were the months that turned everyone into bakers. Redundancies, furloughs, comfort-eating and an abundance of time at home meant the majority of us craved nothing more than a sweet-treat. It’s died down now but at the time, it in itself reached epidemic proportions… Using these new skills, some decided to start their own businesses. I truly admire these risk takers. That gamble during a pandemic is crazy but commendable. It’s almost as if that “everyday hustle” mentality has reached a new level, a more healthier one. This hustle mentality is born out of purpose, inspiration and creativity, a stark contrast to the “we have the same 24 hours” message that’s been churned out for the last couple of years. The increase in online businesses has made our government consider introducing a new tax. That shows just how many of us took the initiative to make something for ourselves! https://www.independent.co.uk/news/business/online-sales-tax-internet-sellers-rishi-sunak-coronavirus-treasury-a9640531.html. I feel like COVID-19 has really brought out the best and the worst in us, but I’ll try and stay focused on the good. The virus hasn’t gone away and we are expecting a second maybe even a triple wave. However, these new skills and ventures are going to be what gets us through it so keep pursuing those hidden talents!

2. KNOWLEDGE

I couldn’t discuss 2020 without mentioning KNOWLEDGE. BLM (Black Lives Matter) protests took (and continue to take) place across the globe and there was a united call for the disbanding, and de-funding of the police and any other systems that uphold white supremacy. There was an abundance of support for the cause, and for a while it was all everyone was talking about. Now, there definitely were some virtue signalers, but I was happy to see the message being broadcast to all. Not only did I march in the streets but I donated, educated and spoke up at job’s BLM forum. I title this section knowledge because 2020 made it no longer possible to be ignorant to the ideas of systemic racism, police brutality and the countless micro-aggressions black people face daily. We took to the streets, masks, water and hand sanitizer in-toe and made sure our voices were heard. Justice hasn’t been served for all my brothers and sisters, but I do feel change is coming. The momentum cannot and will not stop, as long as we stay true to our goals.

3. SELF-AWARENESS

I think this point is the most crucial in understanding 2020. As our cities and towns were forced to a halt, and we were made to stay indoors, we had no other choice but to self-reflect. Depending on who you were in quarantine with, it may have led you to take some accountability and culpability for your situation. How did I get here? Why are you with this person? Do I really know my children? Should I work from home permanently? Do I need a degree? All these questions and more crossed our minds in this period. When there’s nothing left to distract you from your thoughts, you are forced to question your life, and that’s not a bad thing! 2020 asks us to be still. It asks us to look after ourselves and look out for others. Albeit it didn’t have to do this through a pandemic… but with a little more consciousness, maybe we can create the world we deserve. For me, I try to live intentionally, always seeking for meaning and purpose. It was nice to have a few more people on my wavelength during these lockdown months…

To sum up, the new skills, the knowledge and the self-awareness that 2020 has squeezed out of us will determine this decade. Think of 2020 as the rebirth, the renaissance of our lives… Labour isn’t wonderful till the baby comes out cute!

3 fitting words for this post: reflect, change, grow

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