Happy 2021. Have you noticed how the customary wish at the start of a New Year has fizzled out this year? It is as if we lack the courage to wish people well when the first few weeks of the year have already been so difficult. 2021 seems to have punched us in the gut in the first few seconds of the first round.
Already we are battling a new, more contagious strain of the virus. We are confronted daily with reports of people suffering or dying of Covid-19. If that was not enough, we had to watch an attempted coup of the beacon of democracy, follow political upheavals about vaccinations and confront the conspiracies of G5 tracking vaccines, Bill Gates and The New World Order. In addition, it seems like people have saved their worst possible behaviour for just this moment in history –nastiness towards fellow humans seems to be peaking alongside the pandemic.
Closer to home, our holidays were interrupted by the arrival of the second wave of Covid – just in time for our annual celebrations. Not only could we not go to the beaches, rivers, or dams, we could not celebrate in our habitual ways, get our annual overdose of family or indulge in sparkling wine.
For us, the New Year started with a family Covid-19 infection. Despite isolating before Christmas so that we could see our family, including our 86-year old mum, we fell like pawns after Christmas. I started the New Year by spending days in bed in a haze of fever and pain. Thankfully, we have all recovered, even our mum! Yet, even recovered, life and how we navigate it is not as it was.
Despite my best intentions and efforts to rest, I have felt drained and devoid of a vision for this year. My annual vision setting exercise seemed useless in the face of so many other challenges and uncertainties. It felt like this year required a different strategy.
No new big visions. No lofty targets. No great resolutions. Instead, I want to take this year a day at a time. I want to be present to the challenge of each day. I want to show up every day for my family, my team, my clients, and for myself. I want to focus on doing what I’m doing, doing well, day by day, a moment at a time. I do not want to spend time thinking ahead, where the fear of the future will lure me away from what is in front of me – my children’s final teenage and student years, my parents’ limited years on earth or important personal decision for my clients. Thinking about this year in moments and days feels more manageable. It feels like a challenge I can take on. Just this moment. Just this day.
Perhaps if we all choose to live in the present this year, we may experience a completely different reality. Even if we don’t, we will have made this year’s moments count.
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