We made it to the end of the year

So we made it... somehow through the odds and the weirdest year in a while we got to the end. It’s the end of the year!! What can we say? – but well done. We’ve survived. We can only hope for better next year. 

Time for a few reflections?

I think we’ve all felt the stress of world events in 2020, right through to our very core. I’m not going to list them, but the level of negative and stressful news has really taken its toll. It’s been super tough mentally, so if you’re reading this – you’ve really earned your winter festive break. 

Take time out in the next few weeks to rest, recover, recharge and do all those things that make you feel like a person again. Yes – Eat, Drink and Be Merry! I think it’s mandatory to have some fun and ‘me time’ now.

In the USA they say ‘kick back’ – that’s definitely the message from the Spirit of Christmas Present, for the end of this year. 

Recharge your mojo

As well as eating your own body-weight in cinnamon flavoured pastry treats (er – inspired by a friend…) give a little thought to what helps you recharge. What are the things you do to help get perspective again? so you don’t lose your temper and take those better long-term decisions in the new year. 

If you’re an extrovert, maybe you need to get onto Zoom or Teams with your best buddies and talk it out. You need to find a way to have that contact time, even if you can’t visit or go to a bar or coffee shop this year.

If you’re an introvert, time to message those select friends for some 1:1 chats or get some down-time with your favourite media, have some ‘me time’ to recharge those batteries, away from the noise of crowds .

Everyone has their retreats, their happy places, those that inspire them and their rituals. 

It’s time . Do what makes you happy. Kick back. 

Don’t forget to exercise too (with friends in sufficient space, or on a quiet walk with your good self). Fresh air and a countryside view can make a huge difference to your mental state. You can still be distant and safe outdoors. 

I recently bought a head-torch and water-proof boots, sometimes a wander in the evening air really helps before bedtime. I do look like an illuminated Dalek, but I’m learning to live with that as an image. 

Notes from the end of my year 

It’s worth reflecting on 2020, but just on the good things and what went well for you. There will have been some light in the dark. I’m sure you discovered some areas of your life you like more than you realised. Make sure you find your positives and list them up somewhere. Give it some serious thought. 

For me – the positives have been speaking to friends, from previous workplaces and distant buddies in the US over social media. It’s been amazing to connect with people to see how they are and keep in touch.

I’ve actually become a bit closer to a few contacts through regular updates and sending ‘voice diary’ messages via WhatsApp to a friend in USA. A small collaborative project has been born from our chats – so there’s the diamond in the mud in my year. (I only just said mud…).

Also, I took a big career decision in 2020 to leave the well financed but dry corporate digital world and move to a trainee Instructional Design role in the public sector.

It’s been tough ‘on-boarding’ (joining a new organisation) remotely, but I’ve made four months progress, gained a ton of new skills and started delivering some value in my new career. We also formed a ‘virtual onboarders’ team for new starters working from home. We have united as the home based starter gang of 2020. 

Did I pick the worst year to do start a new career in L&D?!? – Maybe. The planning and training I did over the previous year has really equipped me for it. Career change doesn’t by chance and in some ways a remote 2020 has given me more space to learn my new role. I might not have had the luxury of time if I’d been commuting each day to a new location. 

New focus

I’ve also found a new focus this year – it’s been coming for a while, but I really want to put more time in to my own creative work in 2021. The role change to being an eLearning producer has helped. But I’ve also found inspiration in a few other sources. Maybe a new direction is something you can get from a terrible year, a potential benefit of the last few months. 

Some thanks for inspiring and guiding me goes to: 

That’s all folks

That’s me done for (and with) 2020… Thanks for reading and have a great Christmas break. 

Thanks to:

https://unsplash.com/@scottwebb for the image for this post.