2020 review / 2021 goal – Let’s focus on being happy!

Well, thanks for coming here, but this particular piece will have little to no added-value to you.

My 2020 goals weren’t mind blowing. There were a few disappointments and if you like seeing how miserable others have been, you can read below, but you are probably going to be disappointed.

Instead of reading my review and new goals, go make candles or better, check in with yourself and get cracking with your own 2020 review. Drill down on what made you happy, despite it all. What achievements you had, even if these would look insignificant to others. Do not care what others might think, you don’t even need to tell anyone. And then decide what you want to achieve within the next 365 days (well slightly less at this point), what you want to keep, what you want to delete.

This will be far more interesting to you than reading the below.

Happy 2021! May this New year brings the best of you!

If you insist, you can read on…

Let me start by saying…

Something has shifted. Something has been lifted off my shoulders, although I have no idea what it might be.

Is this feeling of lightness linked to so sort of planetary alignment? Is it because Jupiter is now in Aquarius? Actually I don’t know anything about astrology, although I wish I did, because somehow, I find it fascinating and I always loved looking up at the sky, the stars and the moon.

Maybe it’s the great book (#affiliated link) I read, which sparked new dreams of adventures, although considering the pandemic, these will have to wait. No, I’m not preparing to cross Africa on Minty, I do not want to break it or even scratch it! My adventures will have to be a little less … adventurous!

It may have to do with the realization that my new home won’t be perfect but that perfectly imperfect is ok. It’s not permanent, it’s not irreversible, it will be manageable and will turn out ok.

It certainly has to do with the fact that my workload has increased when I was slightly worried that it would slow down. It’s plenty stressful, but it’s good!

Not sure it matters why. The important thing is that this delightful feeling is there and I’m going to foster it, tend to it, to see it grow!

Darn, this is the exact opposite of what Mark Manson say I should be doing!

Oh well… then not going on a pursuit of happiness…

Vintage telescope

A year in review

December is gone but while the moon was waxing, I felt compelled to review this past year and set ‘goals’ for the new one. (I’m just a little late publishing!) This was a major shift for a girl who has never truly felt aligned with the New Year phase. I’ve always been ‘late’ doing the goals’ setting thing!

Notes:

  • I’m not a goal setting person!
  • One should release the unwanted at the full moon and use the new moon to set new intentions. The energy of the moon is magical this way! Yet, there is no harm in getting ready and taking the necessary time to do a full review, in advance.

To do my 2020 review, I went back to my 2019 review and checked what I wrote in January. Little did I know a pandemic would fall on us and our lives would come to an halt.

Yet, it was fascinating to see that my goals for 2020 weren’t actually derailed by the pandemic. These weren’t mind blowing goals either. There was a focus on simple mindful living, self care, and I now realized that some of these (drawing, sewing, blogging and my personal projects) were completely doable, even if the World was in lockdown!

So here it is:

2020 achievements

My dad and I did finish the renovation of his Indian, my Indian now! I got my driving license and I am now learning to drive it, because, driving a new motorcycle and a motorcycle from 1941, are two different things!

There was a bit of sewing going on, masks included! A lot of drawing and a fair amount of blogging. More cooking than I had anticipated! Surprisingly creative and good cooking!

Confinement includes lots of cooking

More cleaning and disinfecting than I could have imagine!

I managed to continue to go see my dad regularly, apart from when the first lockdown was declared. I hesitated, didn’t know what to do and waited longer than usual to go there.

Work was good! I had more than I anticipated (especially during the first lockdown) and did manage to increase my income by 17% compare to last year.

Budget was kept in line despite huge spending on the bike! But the pandemic and probably most importantly, the good habits gained from a no-buy year challenge continued to be fruitful!

All of this probably contributes to the feeling of lightness I have.

2020 disappointments

There was of course a couple disappointments.

The biggest one is probably that I haven’t been as efficient as I used to. I’m absolutely used to working from home, but since I had to share my space with my partner a lot this year, this created issues for me.

Our home used to be mine and mine alone, from something like 8AM to 6PM. Free to use all the space for my creative projects, my work and else. Silence & quietness or loud music & dancing used to be part of my routine.

This year has been so different and sharing the space, for most of this year has been harder than I thought. I had to adapt to his schedule and zoom calls, I was never free to put on loud music, I couldn’t start on the things I wanted to, because he was there. I was able to do some of it, on days he was back in the office, but most of the time, on such days, I had to handle other things. I felt like I had lost my freedom and this took a bit of a toll on me (and on RtatW).

OK, I feel like a jerk for complaining about this. It really isn’t that bad and I can’t believe this is the first thing that came to my mind. What this shows me is that I still need to work on myself. 😉

Another disappointment was a direct consequence of the pandemic. My cousin and I had planned a fantastic one month road trip in May, which would have taken us from Uganda to Kenya and Tanzania and which obviously had to be cancelled. I actually had mixed feelings about this trip and its cancelation. Somehow, I was relieved because this was a huge spending, it would have cause a significant delay on the bike’s renovation and it also meant, I wouldn’t be able to see my dad for a significantly longer period than usual. Obviously I was also sad, because it was a marvelous trip which planning had already taken me quite a while.

Our great itinerary

And then we bought an apartment! Not something I wanted to do, I said this already. Trying now to see the bright side of it, but it first felt like a huge disappointment. I had just reached an important financial mile stone when I had to, quite suddenly, invest a lot of money in such acquisition. And spend an awful amount of time to handle the paper work. I know most people do not see buying an apartment as a disappointment but an achievement! But here we are!!

There is one more thing I need to remember: How relieved I was that most of the bikes gathering I had been invited to were cancelled and that Minty wasn’t fully ready for the ones that took place. Such a relief made me realized how much I wasn’t ready to face the attention. Yes, I talk about Minty a lot… on line! Almost anonymously! In real life, that’s a different story. In real life, I’m very discrete about it. Plus I have faced a lot of sexism along the way and I’m not equipped to handle x1000. Maybe I’m wrong, but I do expect a lot of that at those gatherings… So there I was, glad I couldn’t attend to avoid my fears and idiots… Not a great achievement!

On more mundane things, I am also slightly disappointed because although I did a lot of sewing, I have little to show off! Masks, yes, but other than that, I spent a lot of time repairing clothes and the projects I started are not finished or not things that worked out perfectly. Same slight disappointment with the drawings! My projects require just too many of them. And my gardening experiment was a disaster, when it had started well!

2020 in short

Well all of this 2020 review probably has little interest to you, but it sure was interesting to me!

It first showed me that despite a pandemic, I managed a lot of my goals. Maybe most importantly, it showed me that somehow, my focus on simple living was the perfect focus during a pandemic, despite the surprises that life threw at me (yes the apartment!).

Well, I touched on this before without realizing it at the time, but it seems that I really learned most of the things I mentioned when I wrote Things we have learned during quarantine – part 1. Cheers to me for coming out of this a better human! (self congratulation and self appreciation!)

This is, after all, probably the reason for the lightness I feel, a sense that this year ended up being a year of personal growth, despite being surreal.

My non definitive rules for 2021

I probably should use the little chart I had made to decide on my 2021 activities! To add some zest to the new year to come, no matter what!

Some of my goals will be a continuity of this year:

  • Increasing my income
  • Becoming a proficient driver of vintage motorcycles! Hopefully going on a summer road trip 🤞
  • Renovating my dad’s second motorcycle! Yeah, he had 2 and we just started on the renovation on this 2nd one, which is even older than the Indian!
  • Sewing & drawing because darn I have to make this work!
  • Self-care

Last year, in my depth year review, I wanted to add to the list because I thought I would get bored doing the same things. I don’t think so anymore and in any case, the new apartment will still take plenty of my time.

So my 2021 goals do include new items in relation to the apartment:

  • Decluttering, preparing slowly but surely for the move, finding the perfect vintage lights, the perfect vintage desk, etc…

And to achieve a peaceful 2021, I think I will follow a very important new rule:

Big news detox!

Being stuck on the news hasn’t done me any good, so I shall stop right now and focus on my dreams and my happiness!

PS:

Cheers to you too if you’ve made the most of 2020, if you’ve decided to come out this this a better human and worked toward such goal.

2021 ahead
2021, here we come!