The beauty of a diamond comes about from the extreme experience of pressure and heat. The same is true for us.

After a roller-coaster year everyone is eager to move on. Our loss of freedom, the fear of falling ill or losing our jobs, have shaken us to the core. We wouldn’t have chosen this path, yet here we are.

However, despite its devastations, 2020 has presented valuable opportunities for learning and growth. It reminded us of who we are, what we really need, and hopefully enabled us to appreciate the real riches in our lives: family, friends, intimacy. Never again will we take for granted the ability to work out, time with fiends, or a glass of wine at the end of a tough day!

The strange thing is that disruption can be a force for good. How? It makes us see things in a different way, it challenges us, and from these challenges, new solutions are formed.

2021 is here and we need to feel safe and have a sense of control over our lives and well-being. But without intention, nothing will happen.

So, make fewer assumptions. Instead, carry a different tone into the new year. Be hopeful and make plans, but have options. Adapt to whatever comes your way.

Take action over the things you can control. Accept uncertainty and focus on solvable worries. Let go of how things “should be” and focus on how things are now. For example: if you’ve lost your job during this time, you still have control over how much energy you put into searching for work by sending resumes or networking with your contacts. Or, if you’re worried about your health, take action by regularly washing your hands, wearing a mask, cleaning surfaces, and avoiding crowds.

By focusing on aspects that you can control, you’ll switch from ineffective worrying to active problem solving.

You could spend your time thinking of all the things that have gone wrong or you could focus on possibilities and opportunities. This shift to acceptance will ultimately help us to put our best foot forward, rather than mourn lost opportunities.

Set goals. Yes, by all means set goals for the “achievables” (those you know can be done regardless of the global situation). Set goals around learning a new skill or around personal development. You can either be angry or despondent that the world isn’t how you want it to be and put everything on pause, or you can forge ahead and make the most of the situation as it stands.

Continue to manage stress and anxiety. When we’re anxious, we tend to overestimate the impact of a negative event and underestimate our chances of recovery. Be kind to yourself and prioritize self-care. Good mental health is crucial in difficult times. For many of us, this will mean continuing to see a therapist in order to get the help we need.

Keep looking to friends and family for support. Human beings do not thrive alone. Build and maintain a network of people that you can trust in difficult times.

Let’s move forward from 2020, it’s time.


DISCLAIMER: The information on this website is for educational purposes only, and is not intended as medical advice, diagnosis or treatment. If you are experiencing symptoms or need health advice, please consult a healthcare professional.