It’s safe to say that 2020 was a year that nobody expected. With more time spent on Zoom than with loved ones, millions of jobs lost, and everyone’s mental health on the brink of destruction, this year has presented challenges that can feel downright impossible to overcome. And while I don’t want to downplay the devastation that so many people of the world have faced, I also think it’s important to acknowledge the good that has come out of this year.
Personally, 2020 has been an extremely transformative year for me. In fact, I can confidently say this has been the most significant year for my personal growth so far. Having spent more time with myself than I ever have, I was forced to face my demons head-on without the distractions I previously used to avoid them.
This year, I overcame an eating disorder, started the journey of pursuing a career I care about, and learned to love myself like I never have before. In no way was any of this easy, but in the darkest of days is where I experienced the most growth. I’m proud of myself for that, so I’d like to share a few things I’ve learned along the way. Here are 20 things I learned in 2020:
1. Make time for the people you care about. Call them, text them, plan a Zoom happy hour, write them a handwritten letter!
2. Make time for the things that make YOU happy. It’s okay to put yourself first sometimes.
3. Being vulnerable is scary, even terrifying at times, but it will make you strong.
4. Don’t be afraid to show the world who you are. Your story and your truth matter.
5. A good morning routine can change your life.
6. You get what you give. If you put forth the effort, the universe will pleasantly surprise and reward you for it (even in small ways).
7. The greatest growth comes from what feels like insurmountable moments in time. Things will get better if you choose to get up and keep going.
8. You deserve to treat yourself and your body with unconditional love, respect, and compassion.
9. It’s okay to have doubts, but don’t let them stop you from pursuing your passions and dreams.
10. Baby steps are key. Even the smallest of tasks can make a big difference in the long run.
11. Make time for creativity – write, paint, sing, learn an instrument, ANYTHING that nurtures the creative child inside of you!
12. Rejection sucks, but it doesn’t hurt as bad as not trying.
13. Boundaries are important and necessary. Set them with intention.
14. Sometimes being productive IS taking a step back to relax or have some fun.
15. You work way harder than you give yourself credit for. Keep pushing.
16. It really doesn’t matter what other people think as long as you believe in yourself and your purpose.
17. You are so much more than your body and your appearance. Your value comes from your heart.
18. It’s okay to have bad days (or weeks) sometimes. Be gentle and forgiving with yourself and move on.
19. Spreading yourself too thin, whether that be in your work or your social life, will wear you out. Prioritize your time in a way that prioritizes you.
20. You are enough.