Here is a blog YES Speaker, Janie Stubblefield, MA, LPC-S, RPT-S, wrote at the beginning of the year. The YES team felt the concept of taking control and moving forward was so encouraging, we wanted to share it with you!
Let’s face it, we are all glad to put the year 2020 behind us. Although we entered 2020 with high hopes – using phrases like “2020 vision” – the year became an unprecedented year of unpredictability and uncertainty.
COVID-19 caused an abrupt halt to life as we knew it. Businesses were closed, people lost their job, schools went virtual, and thousands of people died – what’s worse, they died alone.
Then the unrest of social injustice flooded the streets. More businesses were closed, more people lost their jobs, and more people lost their lives.
There is so much that could be written about 2020, but the focus here is moving forward.
Someone once said, “Five years from now you will be exactly the same except for the books you read, the places you visit, and the people you meet.” This is your time to set a plan for thing you want to bring into your life in 2021.
The pandemic is not over. Our world has not yet returned to “normal”. People are still without work and looking for hope. Social injustices are still visible everywhere. We’ve all adjusted to the online virtual world we live in now, and we are managing. However, stop for a moment and look at what is inside your circle of control and make a list – let’s call it a 21 for ’21 list. Think about the things you like, or even challenge yourself with things like:
- Learn 21 new recipes.
- Learn 21 new words (make it challenging, think SAT).
- Write 21 long-hand letters to friends (won’t they be surprised).
- Try 21 “other” flavors of ice cream.
- Find 21 inspirational quotes.
- Take 21 memorable pictures.
- Call 21 old friends to reconnect.
- Learn 21 sign language signs.
- List 21 positive affirmations to tell yourself (and begin telling yourself).
- Give away 21 items from your closet.
- Color 21 mandalas
- Put together 21 puzzles.
- Paint 21 paint-by-number pictures (unless you’re gifted and can create your own).
- Send 21 bouquets of flowers to loved ones throughout the year.
- Go on 21 hikes in nature.
- Send cards to 21 people in nursing homes/rehab centers/homeless shelters.
- Buy 21 cups of coffee for strangers.
- Listen to 21 TEDtalks.
- Give 21 bags of food to animal shelters.
- Contribute 21 hours of time to a charity.
- Do 21 random acts of kindness.
- Or, take 1 item from each list to create a random list of 21 for ’21.
You get the idea. But, don’t make it just another checklist of chores or “to-do” items. Look for inspiration and ways to add depth and meaning to your life NOW. The opportunities are only limited by our imaginations. I hope you will take the time to make your list now, and by doing so you will look at 2021 as a year of possibilities.
- What’s possible, now that I work from home?
- What’s possible, now that my kids are doing school online?
- What’s possible, now…..(you can fill-in what has changed for you).
- The year ahead is filled with possibilities.
Why 21? Why not? It’s just a number to get you started. A way to begin.
You may find that 21 is not enough of some things, or that 21 is a real stretch for other things. It’s okay. Don’t let the 21 become the focus. Keep the things the focus and enjoy the new “whatever” that you are adding to your life.