Goodbye 2019

It’s 31 December 2019. Last day of the year. Some are saying (most actually) that it’s the last day of the decade.

Tomorrow, 2020 rolls in. So many strategic plans are based on this milestone year that’s coming.

Often the analogy of 20/20 vision is played up. I’m going with the crowd, railing against my sensibilities, and looking at tomorrow as being the beginning of a new decade. I imagine that we’ll call it “the 20’s”.

I was working in the government technology space when we all held our breath and welcomed in the year 2000. So much money was spent expecting the worst. Nothing happened. No planes dropped out of the sky. Computers still booted up at 12.01am on 1 January 2000. The electronic world kept turning.

2010 was ushered in without any panic or fanfare. New decade? So what. It’s been an interesting 10 years and we all now have access to so much information; more social media, a variety of communication channels, immediate access to entertainment, vicariously living through other people’s insta stories.

But 2020 seems to hold so much more promise. There is a growing movement of people who are, I believe, more socially aware. There may be more media at our fingertips and the anonymity of the internet. Many of us are becoming more cognisant of the need to limit our time on it, and to hold back on the nastiness, remembering that we need to walk in another’s shoes before criticising them.

In the media there is more awareness of diversity and difference and the need to hold to strong values human decency.

We can buy more stuff, more easily. We don’t even need to leave the safety of our own home to purchase. But there is a growing movement of minimalists that are influencing many of us to think twice before buying more things. And to sort through what we already have, dividing it into what we need, what brings us joy, and what we can discard. Recycle. Upcycle. Donate. Opshop.

Houses are growing larger and many first time buyers are critiscised for wanting bigger and better. But at the same time this is balanced out by the tiny house movement. Those who have chosen to down-size their lives and their environmental footprint, and loving the freedom that it brings.

And me? I’m going into 2020 with a huge sense of gratitude for the life that I have been blessed with. The past decade has brought many ups and downs for me and my family, as it will have done for everyone.

I lost a job that I loved and thought I would have until retirement. I’ve moved house (and subsequently downsized) 3 times. I lost my dad and had to help my mum move and get used to life on her own, finding her own unique form of independence. I’ve lost friends and supported people through their own heartaches.

But on the upside, I’ve some great people in my life. I’ve had amazing trips both overseas and within Australia, and the life-changing experiences that travel brings.

I’ve watched my daughters blossom into strong, independent and talented women.

I’ve forged a new career in the private sector and had some big wins.

I’ve met new and interesting people who have taught me great lessons.

I started this blog and my website Achieving Happiness last year because I realised that we try to teach life lessons like leadership and mindfulness, but sometimes people just want some pointers on how to be happier, everyday. I’ve found new authors, bloggers and influencers who inspire me.

And I am basically happier and healthier than I have ever been in my life.

I see 2020 as the doorway into a new decade full of promise. There is so much to be thankful for, and whilst I am aware of some of the weighty issues that we currently face worldwide, I believe that if there is a tsunami of positive energy, we can turn the tide.

Happiness is more than just slapping a smile on your face and pretending that everything is okay.

It is a core belief that the optimistic and positive thoughts of the many can overcome the negativity of those who will just ride the wave of the attitudes of the pessimists.

Be thoughtful and be kind. It will come back to you.

I hope you have had a good year and a good decade and that you are also going into 2020 feeling positive about your future. Happy New Year!

Credit: Photo by Annie Spratt on Unsplash