Updated: Dec 31, 2020
Written by: AJ Merlin, Executive Contributor
Executive Contributors at Brainz Magazine are handpicked and invited to contribute because of their knowledge and valuable insight within their area of expertise.
Can you remember what your resolutions were in January 2020? Is it weird to think about them almost a year in a pandemic? Before starting all over again with new goals for a new year, let’s take some time to reflect on the past year and see what is worth remembering.
How Do You Know if You’ve been Successful?
Don’t compare what you’ve achieved (or not) with the pre-COVID standard. You’re here reading this, which says a lot. You’re focused on your career, and no matter what happened, you’re determined to be successful. Has 2020 slowed you down? You’ve plenty of time to catch up. Have you been overwhelmed with the amount of work you had to pull off? I hope you learned how to look after yourself and take a break (if not, keep reading).
Treat 2020 differently and don’t compare it to the previous years. We used to live in such a fast-paced world where we only focused on the big wins. Celebrate the smallest victories you had and keep doing this moving forward.
The Year of Self-Awareness
If 2020 has taught people one thing, it is how to look after themselves.
Did you learn to play a new instrument or to speak a new language? According to Business Insider, Duolingo got new sign-ups rise to 108% in March 2020. Did you bake more? #bananabread now has 1.7 million posts on Instagram.
Maybe you had so much work to do, juggling homeschooling, more house chores, and a new way of working. (I’m raising my hand here). How did you unwind when you had five minutes to yourself?
With a different way of living, we got more involved in what matters to us and our self-development. What could you do from now on to make sure your mind doesn’t spiral into negativity? And if you haven’t started yet, it’s not too late. It can be as simple as going for a walk, run a hot bath, or do some coloring.
How Gratitude Is the Way Forward
How do you feel about the pandemic? One way to stop your brain from feeling negative feelings is to practice gratitude. Your brain cannot focus on negative and positive thoughts at the same time. Gratitude is the weapon against fear.
So what are you grateful for? You might find it hard at first, but try to find ten (yes, ten!) things you’re grateful for. It can be as simple as “I’m grateful I have access to drinkable water.”. Maybe now you cherish more your family and friends. Maybe you discovered a new skill. Whatever it is, write it down, frame it if you want to, and remember what your strengths have been in 2020.
Let’s be honest. No one has a clue what 2021 will be made of. We’re all hoping homeschooling will be better than 2020, and we should. So when you start this new year, remember all the amazing things you’ve accomplished for the past year, even the smallest victories, remember what you’re grateful for and what really matters to you, and enter 2021 with the confidence that you’ve got this. I know you do.
AJ Merlin, Executive Contributor, Brainz Magazine
AJ is a Creative Mindset Coach who helps female creative freelancers and entrepreneurs strengthen their mindset and befriend their inner critic to manifest their full potential. She worked in the film, TV, and video games industry for the past ten years as an assistant producer, a script supervisor, an LQA tester, a writer. Her coaching business focuses on providing creative women with mindset tools that free them from their struggles and help them become their true selves. She focuses on three particular pillars: How to tackle your inner voice and reframe it so it becomes your empowering mentor, how to be efficient with your time and keep your motivation up no matter the obstacles, and how to feel empowered as a woman and achieve your dream in alignment with your values.