Reflecting on 2020
As we approach the end of this challenging year, I am sitting down to reflect on it, and I encourage you to do the same. 2020 feels unique, unveiling and challenging in many ways.
On the one hand, the core idea of this business has undoubtedly passed the test of the pandemic reality. We all need to think about our digital wellbeing and make sensible, informed choices. I have managed to support my clients and develop the business without much interruption.
The general awareness of digital technologies progressed a few decades since January – most of us had to move online. Many of us had to think about health, and by extension about mental and digital wellbeing. We finally see conversations about a wellbeing-centred approach to building our future. That’s fantastic!
On the other hand, we became aware of the de-humanising aspects of our systems. It pains me dearly to reflect on the truths we have faced and lives we have lost. We have seen the shadow side of our humanity clearer than ever before. And in some cases, we have remained silent and inactive about it.
It is still to be seen if the long term impact of this year will encourage openness to digital aspects of our reality. Or if we will fall into negative bias when things get back to more grounded reality. However, I am hopeful. I sense a tide shifting all around me.
The truth is hard to carry, but the unveiling continues. As we begin to face the darker side of humanity, we grow stronger together, we cross the divides, we fix our systems deep from within and actively engage in dreaming a new future. Any mental health practitioner can tell you this: the moment we start to dream of a better future, our healing begins.
My favourite topics this month and this year
Importance of our Elders
What really gets me out of bed each morning is the awareness that I have Elders in my life. Social support is crucial, 2020 has certainly made us more aware of that. We need the connection to be well and to thrive. We have lost a lot of Elders this year so it might be worth reflecting on how – as a society and a culture – we treat them. I strongly recommend the work of Stephen Jenkinson – the voice of Elders.
Importance of our stories
Harari published a brilliant comic book about the early days of Homo Sapiens proposing that it was our collective belief in specific stories (creation, religion, money..) that contributed to our success on this planet. We need stories to build trust. When in pain, in counselling, we use stories and metaphors to connect with our feelings. I recommend this fantastic positive parenting workshop from Ojibwe nation as a form of creative exploration of stories that have the power to unite us.
Importance of our future
As mentioned earlier, we need to think, dream, head towards a better future so now might just be the time to re-visit the work of Mark Stevenson. This book might be a good start.
Reflective tools for winter days
This month I am sharing a few simple tools to reflect on the year. Most of us, bloggers, coaches, therapists spend the December reviewing our annual learning and planning the following year. We use online tools (like the Year Compass), have a quick look at our stats and post our favourite photos in one grid on Instagram. I hope that the materials below will be useful:
- Write a letter to your one year younger and one year older self,
- Try this simple reflective cycle for key events from 2020,
- Make a reflective map of the year,
- Replace your Wish List with a Gratitude List this time,
- Journal starting with the end of year reflective practice prompts,
- Review your 2020 inspirations – here is mine on Pinterest as an example.
Let me know what else you would like to see here in the upcoming months.
Stay safe. Stay well. Stay connected.
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