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A Cup of Hope

Updated: Jan 25, 2021

For all of you reading this, you made it through 2020! This was one of the hardest years that most of us have experienced collectively, so take a deep breath and pat yourself on the back. We may not be our old selves and we may be missing our family and friends, but we are here. Take a moment to show gratitude and acknowledge the strength that got you here.

As I watched the New Year’s Eve celebrations from the comfort of the couch that I have grown to love, I thought about what the new year would bring. I smiled at how many of us were anxiously storming into a new year, hoping to turn the page of a chapter we wanted to forget, but we all knew we never would. If we were thinking that somehow January 1st 2021 would be the end of all of our troubles, then it is time to think again. Sadly, many of the personal, professional, national, and global struggles that we faced in 2020 will follow us into 2021. The real question is…how will we face them differently?

Although 2020 was a tough year, we endured the challenges, and some of us even discovered newfound strength, learned new skills, or started new businesses. With that in mind, take a moment to reflect on what 2020 taught you and how you can leverage your new learnings to plan a few strategies to help you thrive in 2021. It is not the new year, but the new YOU that will make sure that no matter what 2021 throws at you, you will be prepared.

Write a Personal Vision Statement. I think that we are all tired of writing New Year’s resolutions every year, especially knowing we will probably break them. But this year, rather than scribbling a few loose goals and commitments, write down a real vision statement for yourself. What do you really want to achieve this year? After having plenty of time to reflect on your life, what is your passion and where do you want to see yourself at the end of 2021. Write your statement as a goal and declaration of where you want to be and who you want to see when the clock strikes midnight at the end of this year.

Commit to a new way of connecting. In the past year we had to adjust to physical distancing and were forced to learn new ways to connect virtually. At first, I was resistant to digital social platforms, refused to expose my personal life on social media, and frowned upon those awkward zoom parties where I was the only one who didn’t get the memo that the crazy hat idea had been cancelled. But as the months went by, I yearned for human warmth and conversation and signed up for virtual cooking classes, tea tastings, and parties. So whether it is a virtual happy hour with friends, a zoom book club, a religious meeting, or a study group, commit to finding new and creative ways to embrace togetherness by navigating social platforms. Not only will you surround yourself with people who share your passion, but you will also feel a stronger sense of connection to yourself and others.

Practice a tea ritual. In all honesty, 2021 is going to begin with a rough start. But that doesn’t mean you won’t have joy or achievement in 2021. So practice self-care and plan a daily soothing tea ritual that invites a moment of calm to each and every day. Maybe it is drinking an invigorating spearmint and orange herbal tea before heading off to work, mixing a frothy bowl of matcha in the early afternoon, or sipping on some soothing chamomile herbal tea while relaxing in a hot bath at the end of the day. Taking the time to practice self-care will ensure that you stay strong and ready for anything that 2021 brings.

Yes, we have great hopes for 2021, but we need to have great hope in ourselves and our ability to face new challenges with strength and positivity. Writing a vision statement, connecting with people, and setting time aside for ourselves each day can alter the way we personally and professionally navigate the year ahead. Because while it is a good thing to survive a year, it is an even better thing to thrive in it and be the absolute best person that we can be. Cheers to 2021!

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