• Brettney Douglas-Al Hindi

Four Things You Can Do Right Now To Level Up for 2021

"We are coming to the close of the year & this is the time we see lots of other people's accomplishments. Let the record show that if all you did this year is survive/outlive COVID that is an accomplishment to celebrate. When someone asks what you accomplished, tell them that."- Adara Sherron

At the top of 2020, we all set our intentions and listed goals that we wanted to achieve; not knowing that this year would be the bombshell that we all were not anticipating.

Typically, during the fourth quarter, we would all sit back and take inventory of everything that we attained and check it off or work ourselves to the bone to make it happen before the new year begins. With this bizarre time in history, we are forced to give ourselves nothing but compassion and grace, as we grieve on plans and dreams deferred. To be completely honest, contrary to popular opinion, although this year was outlandish and uncomfortable; it was probably the best year yet, in terms of self-actualization and having the guts to finally face my demons.

Don't get me wrong, it was no walk in the park. I had some hard days, and they were quite frequent, but by his grace, I'm still here to see another day.

I came across this the other day on Instagram and it served as the perfect reminder for stubborn individuals such as myself, "it's more important to finish this year off sane, than strong." Nothing could be further from the truth. We have to create space to build a self-care plan that promotes and prioritizes taking better care of ourselves, and our mental health.

For a lot of us, our confidence and sense of worth are attached to what we do or what we accomplish. At the very core of our being is someone who just wants to be seen, heard, and loved/appreciated for who are. We're so stuck in this cycle of comparison, and wanting other people to validate our existence that when we don't fit into this mold (that more than likely was set by others); we feel unworthy when we don't meet that expectation, or accomplish that thing that we had our hearts and minds fixated on. With so much that has gone seemingly wrong during what so many were hoping was "their year," I hope that you can find some peace in knowing that you are not alone in feeling that way and remember that delayed does not mean denied. Just because you were not able to cross certain things off of your bucket list now, doesn't mean that you cannot do so in the future. This year has taught us that it is okay to re-adjust, re-center, re-start, or pivot (change direction) as many times as we need to.

As we approach 2021, I want to encourage you to do four things to level up and prepare yourself for what is to come:

1. Reimagine what's next for you

It's important to acknowledge the current scope of what is happening around us, but as opposed to looking at it with dread, view it as an opportunity to grow, and create a new way of living. It's tempting to look at this year and think about it from the lens of what we missed out on or the collective loss that we've experienced, but what if we were grateful for this present moment and thought about what has remained in our lives? Before the pandemic, so many of us were operating on autopilot and has this unhealthy grind mentality that left us stressed and tapped out mentally and emotionally. Now we are forced to sit back and be still. For a lot of us, this is an opportunity to try new things or finally take a stab at some things that we've been holding off on. Look at this time from the perspective that there are so many possibilities for you, and that you do not have to limit yourself. You have the freedom to use your imagination and visualize a future that is much different from the one you settled for, trust the process even when you don't know how you'll get to your destination just yet.

2. Get your mind right

At the end of the day, your mindset is everything. Ever heard of the saying, "your thoughts become things." It's true. What we think has so much power over what we become. If you want to manifest or bring good fortune to fruition, you have to meditate on positive, life-giving, affirming things that support the life that you desire to live. Start by speaking the things you want into existence, and feeding your mind with faith, motivation, and inspiration that help you to focus on that. Once you get your thoughts in check, you've already positioned yourself to attract the right type of energy and open doors that will bring those aspirations to light.

3. Check your circle

It's no secret that the company you keep has an effect on your overall health and wellbeing. The people that you spend time with can make or break you. If you know that you are meant for greater things, surround yourself with people that have what you want to have, or are living the life that you want to live. Go out of your way to seek guidance, mentorship, or resources from experts or accomplished individuals that can help propel you to the next level. The only way that you can reach your goals is by actively working towards them, and a big part of that is being intentional with the energy transfers that you are making on a daily basis, and that is through the interactions that you are having with other people. Make sure that the people that you are entertaining platonically, romantically, or professionally not only have your best interest in mind, but that it's a mutually beneficial relationship where there is trust, respect, and reciprocity. If you find that you are not connected to the right type of people, find a community of people that are aligned with your life's mission or goal.

4. Ignore what other people are doing

Comparison is the thief of joy. We've all heard that scripture, and know it to be true. In this day in age with social media and having 24/7 access to what the rest of the world is doing at any given moment, it is easy to compare ourselves to other people. Even in the midst of a pandemic, there were still some people who managed to find love, excel in their careers, and/or reach other milestones that many find admirable; and that's great for them. We have to be careful that we don't allow what we perceive as someone else's blessing or come up to make us feel bitter, jealous, or less than because it didn't happen for us at the same time or when we felt like it should have happened. We don't know what other people had to go through to get to their winning season, therefore we can't allow ourselves to get upset or feel bad because we all have our ups and downs. What God/universe has for you, is for you; and you will not miss out on what is intended to be for you, so don't fret or worry about it. If anything, rejoice in the fact that people are still experiencing miracles every day and be open to the fact that your life can change for the better at any moment. Don't get discouraged by what other people are doing or what other people are experiencing; just know that your time will come and that there is always something to look forward to.

While you are working towards creating your life's vision, remember to enjoy where you are. Sometimes we're in such a rush to get to the next phase that we forget how far we've come. Take a look back at all that you have overcome in the last year, and have gratitude and appreciation for making it this far. Even if you were not able to get to your desired outcome, know that what is meant for you is just around the corner. Entertain the thought that things could happen far much greater than you ever could have imagined and that the best things in life take time. So, take a deep breath and keep moving forward because you got this!

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