Silver linings don’t always reveal themselves instantly — sometimes it takes time for them to appear!
Like most of you, if you ask me what I didn’t like about 2020 the laundry list is long. It includes everything from the annoyances of social distancing and wearing masks to the heartbreak of knowing so many people are grieving someone they lost because of COVID.
Many of us are cranky, depressed, and even angry. COVID fatigue is real for many. It’s an almost minute-by-minute fluctuating emotional state that ranges from feeling blessed to stressed.
As someone who founded the Society of Happy People, I always feel like it’s my job to walk my own talk by easily finding the silver lining of a situation. And this year it’s been month after month of non-stop unpleasant situations and some simply don’t feel they have a silver lining.
However, sometimes silver linings aren’t always instantly apparent. They reveal themselves over time.
I’m sure this time next year more things will have revealed themselves. However, ten months into living in a global pandemic that’s impacted virtually everyone to some degree I have discovered some 2020 silver linings that I want to share with you—in the hopes that you’ll be able to add some to your own 2020 Silver Lining List!
I value people time more than I realized.
I’m an introvert by nature—which simply means my people bandwidth is shorter than an extrovert’s. I enjoy time alone and even need it. However, as a single person, I’ve gotten to spend so much time alone that I realize how much I value my people time. I look forward to embracing it more at some point in 2021. And while technology is a lifeline it doesn’t replace an in-person conversation looking someone in the eye and when appropriate giving them a hug.
Even though science couldn’t protect everyone from getting COVID—it has helped reduce the transmission of it if you followed the advice of scientist. It’s helped us learn to treat COVID better. And in a short amount of time, it’s given us vaccines.
Technology is a lifeline.
While Zoom and facetime calls don’t replace people to people interaction—it does help to make people feel closer and has kept us workplace productive. I even found myself using old-fashioned technology, a phone, and making a point of calling people to hear their voice instead of texting or messengering them.
Social media is about what you make it about.
If your feeds are full of negativity and drama—you may need to clean out your friend or follower lists unless that makes you happy. However, if you’re lucky like I am and have lots of friends who are always seeking to raise the vibe of their friends, family, and even the world, it’s a great place to connect with people who focus on #SmileStarter posts.
Silence is golden.
There was a time when if someone told me 2 + 2 equaled 6, I’d have felt a need to correct them. However, this year has reinforced that many times it’s not worth my effort to correct someone or even share my opinion. And the rare times when I do share an opinion that differs with a poster’s, especially on social media, I keep it positive, not personal, factual and then don’t pay attention to the comments that follow.
Life is about perspective.
As challenging as this pandemic has been for so many—compared to other historic transformational events like World War II—we are still blessed. We’re being asked to wear masks, socially distance, avoid large gatherings, and wash our hands. We’re not being asked to hide in attics or bunkers because bombs are exploding.
While many industries are economically hurting like the hospitality, event, and travel industries, and some professionals like healthcare workers, first-line responders, educators, and even delivery services are overwhelmed—the vast majority of us have food, homes, and online access to connect to people and entertainment.
People are creative.
When we didn’t get to do traditional celebrations and activities—we got creative with drive-by and online events. The celebration yard signs, stadium graduations, neighborhood sing-alongs, driveway happy hours, and facetime calls have been entertaining and inspiring for everyone.
There’s More Happiness in the Moment
I found despite the unknows, chaos, and even sadness that was going on around me, when I stayed in the moment, I was usually happy. Of course, no one is happy all of the time and neither was I. However, when I wasn’t planning an unknown future or dissecting the past and just living in the moment it was usually happy.
There are lots of big hearts.
People have stepped up to help their neighbors and strangers. People shared rolls of toilet paper with neighbors—I know my neighborhood FB group was awesome at making sure everyone had hard to find supplies this spring. People have donated food and even redirected food supply chains to feed those who are dealing with food scarcity. People have stepped up to volunteer their time and resources.
Often this doesn’t get enough news coverage or shares on social media. Despite the chaos of the year from the pandemic and other big issues, the love people feel for others is bigger than the fear and hate.
And without question, some people have taken an opposite approach responding to the pandemic—sometimes it’s important to remember it’s not about what others do, it’s about what you do. Your actions inspire others so make sure they reflect your heart.
When big adversities don’t really impact us personally it’s easy to claim you have empathy for others. However, our empathy grows when we’re personally connected to a challenge. COVID has united everyone because it has reminded us that we are all connected.
While we may not want to relive 2020, it hasn’t been without some silver linings, you just have to look for them—maybe with a magnifying glass — however, they are there.
The biggest silver lining is that the way we move forward is to love one another. And maybe make a bucket list about what we’ll be so happy to do again in 2021. I’ve already started writing my 2021 bucket list. Have you started yours?
If you’d like to Raise Your Vibe to kick off 2021 — be sure to join our FREE 5 Day Raise Your Vibe Challenge!