We’ve made it to the last few months of 2020. This has been quite the unpredictable year, but I don’t have to tell you that. Somehow, between all the talk about social distancing, quarantine, and wondering when things will get back to normal, I’ve been able to walk away from 2020 with a few life lessons. While this has been a strange year, it’s also been a growing year for me. I’ll be sharing the lessons I’ve learned in 2020 with you today.

3 Lessons I’ve Learned In 2020

1. My mental health is important and it’s worth taking the time to improve it.

One of the most important things I did for myself this year was going to counseling. I have depression & mild anxiety. At the beginning of the year I was at a low point in my life, as I’m sure many others were. Having depression makes the low points even more dark and lonely. 

I couldn’t afford therapy at the time so I chose to do free counseling that a church in my area offered. I was on a waiting list for a few months, but when January came I was finally able to see a counselor. Counseling was hard. Some sessions were better than others, but after a few weeks went by I started to see a shift. 

As I continued to put in the work to create a better mindset and confront my emotions, I found myself free from the depression and anxiety that had been a stronghold on me for months. All of the hard sessions, negative emotions, etc. were worth it. Now I have the tools to break through the next depressive episode I may have.

I would recommend counseling to anyone, whether you have a diagnosed mental illness or not, but especially if you do. Everyone goes through hard times. When you feel like you need help determining what is next or how to move past your current situation, counseling can be a great option.

If you, or someone you know, is in need of help, there are options available

2. Once I took the “I’m busy” excuse away I discovered the truth behind how I spend my time.

I think we have all made this excuse from time to time. Quarantine exposed me to just how often I have said this, as well as how often it was actually true. I’ll give you an example. 

I have been on a weight loss journey for a couple of years now, so I try to work out regularly.  There have been many days this year that I have skipped my workout. At the moment it seemed like there was a solid reason. I needed to clean, work on my blog, cook, etc.. While there were some times I was legitimately busy, there were also times that I could have made it work. The major culprit to my “busyness” was social media. 

Anyone else relate to mindlessly scrolling through Instagram, Facebook, and TikTok? I do this throughout the day more often than I’d like to admit. No wonder why I feel like my day gets busy. Some activities I am going to do to prevent unnecessary busyness are disabling push notifications and creating a habit of unplugging for a day from time to time. I believe by doing this I will eliminate the distraction and excuse for busyness. 

3. In life, unexpected things will happen, how I handle it makes a difference.

2020 was supposed to be the year that I accomplished many of the goals I have been working on for years. What about you? This year has been a unique opportunity for us to look at how we  react to the unexpected. Have you been sulking alone, doing everything you can to ignore COVID-19, or taking it all in stride and trying to make the best of it? 

I went through almost every emotion/reaction you could think of for a while. It wasn’t until I started thinking about the good that has happened this year, that I realized it is possible to go through the unexpected in a positive way. I’ve been writing for GenTwenty for a year now, I made some new friends, and I recently got baptized, to name a few. Those are some great memories to hold on to when I look back on 2020. COVID can’t take that away.

I encourage you to spend some time, after reading this, to think about the good that has happened this year. Even if it is just one small thing. Let that be what defines 2020 for you. 

Those are the three major lessons I’ve learned in this less-than-ideal year we have gone through. I don’t know what 2021 will have in store for us, hopefully it won’t be a repeat of this year, but I do know that it will be better from the lessons I have learned in 2020. What are some lessons that you have learned this year?