2020 was a tough year for all of us.
There were many ups and downs, along with new unprecedented waters. Despite our new reality, this year made us reflect on our daily lives.
Surprisingly, quarantine did many of us some good.
We took on new hobbies or finally tried that one thing we've been pushing back. We discovered other parts of ourselves that we never really had time for before the pandemic.
Here are five things that everyone can take away from 2020:
It's healthy to take some time for yourself.person holding coffee mug Photo by Nathan Dumlao on Unsplash
Often, we forget to take personal time to just sit back and relax. We live in a work-focused society which emphasizes personal success, but we rarely acknowledge that taking some time to do nothing at all can be really beneficial. If you're like me, those first few weeks of quarantine were a dream. Maybe you took advantage of binge-watching new TV shows in your pajamas all day. Sure, after a while, we all got sick of it, but that time alone should have been a sign that you come first. As you start off the new year, don't forget to take some time alone. Read a book, watch a show, have a spa day, or work on a hobby, whatever eases your mind.
Quality time with family is important.woman sitting on grass while facing boy in brown hat Photo by Jessica Rockowitz on Unsplash
All of a sudden, we were stuck inside and "locked in" with our loved ones. It might have felt like a prison sentence at times, but it should have brought you closer to your family. My family and I spent a lot of time together rewatching old movies and TV shows. We baked a lot of sweets and tried new things. At the end of a four-month quarantine, I realized that in a busy school-work day, I really only get around a good thirty minutes of quality family time. Everyone is busy with their own schedules, and we often don't realize how little time we all have together. It really made me appreciate quarantine for those reasons. One thing I've taken away and am going to use in the new year is how important it is to schedule out family time. Regardless of the activity, as long as you're all having fun and making memories, that's all that matters.
Enjoy the simple things in life.man and woman standing in front of gas range Photo by Soroush Karimi on Unsplash
Everything this year was simpler and smaller than we were used to in the past. There were no big gatherings or annual Christmas parties. You probably didn't get to see your extended family members or friends. The at-home intermediate family holiday season was saddening. However, it proved that you have all that you need within your household. It reminded us what holidays and celebrations are all about: appreciating what you already have. The people in your life and the opportunities that got you to this point are all that need to be celebrated. Although fancy presents and meals are all nice, the simple things are what really matters.
Your health should always come first.person lying on bed while covering face with pillow and holding eyeglasses Photo by Isabella and Louisa Fischer on Unsplash
This should be a given as we endure a global pandemic. However, in pre-COVID times, we often put off our health to meet the demands of work and society. What this virus has taught me, if anything, is that if I'm feeling off in the slightest bit, I should take time off to see a medical professional or get myself better. We have so many demanding tasks in our daily lives, but your health is of most importance. Make sure to listen to what your body is telling you, and be proactive on your overall health, both physical and mental.
Don't waste your energy on things that don't do you good.woman walking oh street while holding forehead Photo by Brooke Cagle on Unsplash
Quarantine should have been an eye-opener to what was and wasn't working in your life. We spend all this time trying to satisfy everyone's needs, but we must pay attention to what just isn't working. Whether it's a habit, activity, or a person, your energy should only be spent on things that are doing you good and giving you beneficial things in return. If it's of no good use, then you should reconsider its importance in your life.
This new year should be a time of reflection on what you do and don't want to incorporate into your life. You should value the smaller, simpler things and appreciate the bigger things of the past. Happy 2021!