What. A. Year! Certainly not the year that any of us anticipated or predicted. Each and every one one of us has been impacted by the events of 2020 — some more than others. I could write an entire column on all the bad things that have happened this year, but if you follow me and know me — that’s not my style nor how I choose to live my life.
Instead, I choose — yes choose — to focus on the positive, the growth, and all the good that have happened in my life and business, even in the midst of a whirlwind year like 2020. Lately, I’ve heard or read so many memes, comments, and quotes about how bad this year has been and how we’ll all be glad when it’s over. To be completely transparent, there are days that I agree with this sentiment — 2020 has not been the year I wanted for myself, that’s for sure. It’s easy to jump on the negativity train, but the impact of that conscious decision to focus on the negatives doesn’t help anyone, especially me — and it doesn’t help you either.
Regardless of where you are right now in your life and career, it’s fair to say the last several months have been challenging from many different angles. Our industry has been hit hard and each and every day, I learn about more layoffs, more consolidations, closures, and just plain bad news. But rather than dwell on this, I ask myself what can I do to help someone? To help people along the way, as I see negativity and bad news? How can I make someone's life better — today, right now?
You see, it’s all about perspective and mindset. It’s about how you wake up and approach the world in the morning, even when everything in you is screaming to stay in bed and bury your head under a pillow. Bad things happen every day, but so do good things! You could choose to get out of bed, be negative, dwell on your current situation and the state of the world — and consequently, those feelings will control your attitude, your outlook and emotions, and rule your day. In the same way, choosing gratitude brings the exact opposite to your life.
You can choose to say “Thank You, 2020!” Thank you for helping me understand the value of all that I have, the things that aren’t going anywhere, no matter the circumstance — my family, my friends that I invest in, and my choice to look at the good. Thank you for giving me the courage to do new things — like start a podcast that’s providing information and resources to our community.
Thank you for giving me the clarity I needed to understand what I can do to help those looking for work — like creating a webpage full of resources for the job seeker and making new connections for people across our industry. A resource that I hope everyone looking for work will use and find valuable.
Thank you for all the amazing new connections and relationships I’ve made this year. Our community is made up of some pretty world-changing people, and I’m grateful for each and everyone of you that have connected with me or have reached out. This year has forced us to get creative, to pivot and meet needs of unique worldwide circumstances, and to forge ahead. We’ve adapted!
Though I thought 2020 would be the year I got everything I wanted — now I know 2020 is the year I got everything I needed and learned to truly appreciate everything I have.
As you begin preparing and planning for the new year, it’s important to reflect on all the good that happened in 2020 — even though it may not seem like it, there has been as much good (hopefully more) as there has been bad. Focus on the good, evaluate the bad, and make a plan to move forward stronger. Make a plan to ensure you do everything in your power to make 2021 a great year for you — and put habits and a structure in place to help you feel fulfilled in the ways that matter to you personally.
I know this will not be easy. I struggle with choosing joy every day. We are all human — we all make mistakes, bad decisions, react rather than respond, and things transpire that we didn’t expect, want, or intend to take place. But again, I keep coming back to this — all I’m responsible for is working to be better today than I was yesterday, and that is something I CAN do. For me, that starts with looking at the good things that have happened, being positive and seeing my strengths, choosing to learn from and evaluate every situation, choosing gratitude — and then making a plan to grow and develop into the person I want to be, putting in the effort, every day!
So before you march off into the new year, acknowledge all the good that happened in 2020, and regardless of where you are today, keep working to be better today. Today, you can be the best you that you’ve ever been. The world needs you!
Thank you, 2020! You weren’t the year I planned, but the year I needed. Please visit my blog and share your thoughts on how 2020 has helped you grow and develop. www.sidmeadows.com/blog.