This year has has been a whirlwind from start to this point. When the year started, I’d launch a daily newsletter and so I was in tune with the world news in a way I hadn’t before. By the time the Puerto Rico earthquakes happened, Australia had been on fire for months, the world looked on fearing we were at the brink of a War and it seemed crazy. Then the pandemic creeped up on us and knocked everything else out of the park.
I had big plans for 2020, not the least of which included getting my daughter (then 3 years old) settled into school life and a routine. My husband was in high-gear study mode to finish out his four-year postgraduate stint, and me? I was finally keen on scaling my business. It started out well too, in January we had our best month for sales since I started by business.
But alas, our fast pace ‘now, now, now!’ world was brought to halt and forced to it knees. Nations buried hundreds of thousands and millions got sick. With a few weeks to go, my husbands exams were rescheduled. After two months of Sio in school, schools closed. Still, in this the final month of the year, I know I have much to be grateful for.
1. Reminder to Practice Gratitude as a Lifestyle
Among these things, our mental health took beating after beating, but one of the ways I managed to stay safe was putting my years of bleeting about how grateful I am for everything life has afforded me so far into overdrive. It was my life-line. It helped me to remember that despite every one thing I think I do not have and cannot do, there are at least two things that I do have and can do, and these are some of the things that I’ve held onto as positives.
2. My Family is Safe and Well
Despite being an at-risk household due to living with a healthcare worker who comes into contact with patients from all over, Kemoi, Siobhán and myself have managed to stay COVID free and healthy. Though we haven’t been tested, we have remained healthy thus far. Not just us either, our extended family has been safe from the health riggers associated with the pandemic. I do not know anyone that has contracted the virus and/ passed, and while I do have people on the periphery of my family who have been made to experience this traumatising loss, my own family remains unscathed.
3. Lessons in Patience and Slowing Down
All the clocks we put ourselves on, all the things we must have or do right now, can wait. We were effectively forced into slowing our lives down. For some people, it meant discovery/rediscovery of passions. Time to do that thing you have been wanting to do but didn’t have the time. Even if the time, is time we didn’t want, or came at the loss of something else. We had time to slow down, re-evaluate, breathe.
As a mom I was already fast tracked to learning how to be patient with having a tiny person, but I’ll confess it can be severely maddening at times all the same.
4. My Business Flourished
One of the things I knew I wanted to do was earn more in 2020, and having achieved that through building several income streams (7-10 is the aim), it’s not lost on me that despite all that’s happened this year, in 2019 I refocused my business strategy and had a stellar year in 2020. Shandean Reid & Co. broke the barrier on its first million in sales. Not bad for a freelance writer. I added a junior writer to my team, and while it’s clear that I’ll now need to scale my business to stay par with strategy, I’m excited about the possibilities. I started my Entrepreneurship journey on this blog, and as I move forward, I’m looking forward to helping anyone who is interested, personally and thought my business. I also found the time to beef up my qualifications.
In the same breath, my morning newsletter which was launched was halted, but in my opinion it’s just an opportunity to re-strategise and relaunch.
5. My Blog
My blog has been a lifeline. I have been able to pour into it and let it poor into me as an energy channel. Being forced to slow down has been good for me. As a writer, it’s not easy to be writing in all areas of one’s life. I write for Shandean Reid & Co., this blog, and as an author, my novels. The writer’s block is often quite longstanding, and as you can imagine, it’s the blog that gets left behind. This year, I felt rejuvenated to pour into writing for my blog again and managed to blog at least once a month for most months this year. I’m grateful I was able to become more consistent.
6. Hubby Finished his Program!
Eeek! He did it! He is a finally a Radiologist. I am so proud of him! He has worked so long and so hard. Being in study mode and having exams delayed for six months was a real mental workout. But, he has done it! He sat the exams and passed! And just in time for years’ end. So even though so much was delayed, that’s one more thing that still happened in 2020 and we get to celebrate him! Woot!
7. I have a Home
Something else I was forced to take a long hard look at this year was my home. So many people around the world have to escape from home. I have one that is my refuge and shelter. I want to be home. That’s no small thing.
What are some things that you are grateful for in 2020?