So Long 2021-Thank You For Your Lessons on Perspective

There are several aspects that I will forever remember about 2021. This past year was invaluably unique, unusual, and sometimes unrelenting. From social media scandals to real-life shock and awe moments, 2021 was nothing short of record-setting.

For most of the world, it is already 2022. I say Happy New Year to you! But for myself, I’m presently winding down the final hours of the year, sitting at home comfortably on my couch writing this reflective post. Last year during the height of the pandemic, when everything was utterly unsure, and there weren’t many vaccines headlines inundating our psyches, I relaunched my blogsite. Providing more context, it was the third time I considered doing so.

My entry into the blogging world began ten years ago in a graduate-level documentary class in which I had to work on a group project and produce a website. After the project was complete, I kept the site and added information and opinion posts to the newly revised site. However, life’s struggles and challenges interfered with my willingness to update the site consistently and my overall perspective and focus on beginning the blogging journey.

Fast-forward 10 years later, 2021 has brought me to a new journey in both blogging and my career. So, you’re probably wondering where all of this ties together? After all that the world has witnessed, the correlating aspect of 2021 with 2011 showcased the power of perspectives and transitions.

Without adding to the myriad of adjectives that have been used to describe the past two years of the pandemic, I would say that the most impactful aspect of 2021 has been how people viewed transitions. Naturally, 2020 was a transition globally, but 2021 brought about more defined viewpoints of transition.

From the excellent resignation debate about jobs shifts to the transitions witnessed by the country surrounding political power and authority, how people personally perceived their year made the most significant difference in the overall outcome of 2021.

As I type, we are presently going into year three of the global pandemic, complete with a new and highly contagious variant of the original strands. We’ve witnessed the social transition of society shifting from an all versus one mentality, ultimately impacting the lives and livelihood of those around them. More and more, we have seen health care professionals profess that once this pandemic is at a more controllable stance, they are entirely done with the medical profession.

Arguably it seems unfair considering the sacrifices that many of them have made to practice their careers, but it all loops back to perspective. Despite the knowingly apparent fatigue they are experiencing and have expressed, I’m sure their views on life and the quality of life have become more diverse from their original personal constructs.

As 2021 becomes another year behind history, I challenge people to view their lives from a new perspective collectively. I’m a pretty self-reflective and introspective person naturally—however, it is not an exercise that can not only be done by reflective people. Looking back over the year, there have been many occasions where things didn’t add up.

Perhaps a recent account of this was the world witnessing the culturally transcendent icon Betty White make her transition from labor to reward three weeks shy of her centenarian life marker on the final day of 2021. Three days prior, she discussed hopes, wishes, and gratitude for so many celebrating the life marker with her from all across the world. And while we will never fully understand the ways and complexities of the spiritual realm, we can appreciate the perspectives it provides.

In Ms. White’s case, she left behind a legacy of happiness, hope, and inspiration for people of all generations and creeds to review. It is not a simple feat to accomplish and maintain as we live in a world that persuades and encourages people to stick within the boundaries. Whether the boundaries are tangible or intangible, the global consensus would probably say that the last two years have been rough or even, dare a say, bad for everyone.

Yet, it is all based on the perspective you chose to view of 2021. Earlier in the year, several natural disasters, most notably the 2021 Winter Storm, changed the course of history recordings and people’s lives. And as the year ends within the last three weeks of 2021, several tornadoes and wildfires have also caused damages and life changes.

Now, of course, I will not make light of the tragedies and loved ones that people have lost this year and last seem like they can be explained and rationalized based on viewing the events differently. Yet, the lessons from these moments served greater purposes than what may have been initially recognized.

In 2022, I plan to continue focusing on goals over creating resolutions. However, I also plan to practice more gratitude and humility towards the journey to work towards the goals I have set for myself. 2021 has also taught me that reviewing the journey that I have been blessed to witness from a different perspective can be rewarding and freeing. As a millennial and a person who is goal-driven by nature, I will admit that a lot of the turns my life has made, I did not expect them. For years, I viewed certain instances as mistakes rather than seeing them for the lessons.

Here is a question that you can ask yourself right now? How have you grown this past year? Regardless of your spiritual beliefs, personal growth happens for us all. Again, in my personal development, I began reflecting over the turns in my life leading up to this year and how each part of the journey fit more in line with what I believe is my destined purpose after all. It takes courage and hopes to view your past constructively.

Whether you start at this moment or you journal it along the way during 2022, go back, write down all of the pivotal career and personal moments that are most influential, and write down one to three things that you can say positively changed you or what you learned. Not only will this establish a newfound sense of gratitude, but it will allow room to refocus yourself towards a new mindset and level of purpose.

Shifting focus back towards Ms. White and her many lessons on compassion and humility, she lived a full life. And her legacy will continue to live on beyond that. Though the length of our lives is unknown, and many will experience longer ones than others, it’s highly recognizable that perspective is a factor in the quality of life. Whether ill, physically fit, financially unstable, or fiscally sound, how you perceive your journey and the world around you impact you personally more than you ever realize.

In 2022 I hope that collectively we pass along more humility and compassion for one another. Life is not a race but a marathon, and if we ultimately desire to lead a purposeful life, our understanding and patience for each other must be more developed. Considering the pandemic and certain uncertainties are still raging globally, 2022 will more than likely present new challenges. But, if you decide today that changing your perspective will become a new practice, you can endure through every test, trial, and triumph the new year has to offer.

In closing this reflection, I would like to personally thank everyone that has followed my site this year, viewed article postings, and shared with me my journey this past year. 2021 officially became my blog’s most-viewed year since I began a decade ago, and I am truly grateful. Here’s to new beginnings, new posts, and also new perspectives in 2022.