The road ahead: Why 2021 won’t be the year of redemption

I don’t mean to sound like a Debbie Downer, but 2021 may not prove to be any better than 2020. Much of the disgust towards this year is heavily steeped in pure shock-value and the relentlessness that this year has had on serving up bullshit unfettered. This year will go down as the year of “unprecedented garbage “ that it has been in history books.

But, I don’t want to get caught up in bashing this year without giving real thought to what lays ahead in the upcoming year. It’s my opinion that next year will either be a continuation of the same or a tinch worse depending on individual circumstances. For starters, COVID isn’t going to magically disappear at midnight on January 1. In fact, we will probably continue to experience a surge on top of a surge given this insatiable need to travel and socially connect during a pandemic. Mentally, Americans are suffering across the country as they grapple with loneliness, loss, and an insurmountable amount of grief. Then there is the sheer economic devastation that won’t fully erupt until next year as the dust begins to settle on the financial impact of businesses closing, mass lay-offs, and expired moratoriums. 

2021 will not be the year of redemption. At best, it will be the year that we define what a way forward looks like as things become more clear from the chaos that was this year. The worst thing we could do is go into it with a false sense of hope. There is this notion that somehow 2020 was an anomaly and it might have been. But, it’s incumbent on us to remain vigilant because we are still in the middle of a raging storm. 

Image credit: Tschub via Shutterstock

COVID can still kill you, we don’t know what the long-term health effects of the vaccine are, stimulating the economy is not helping the people that need it most, mental health and suicide rates are at an all-time high, and before it’s said and done, we stand to have an entire generation that is academically behind. So no, I won’t be foolish enough to believe that going into a new year will be redeeming. Instead, I am grateful for making it this far and determined to positively contribute to helping resolve some of these problems. 

Here are a few things that I have committed myself to and suggest you do as well:

  • Take care of home – a large part of helping others is making sure you aren’t depleted yourself. Take time to rest, clean your living space, and spend quality time with loved ones.
  • Educate yourself – take the time to learn and understand something outside of you. Conduct your own research and discover the facts for yourself. We are more polarized than ever because people are siloed in their bubble of fake news and limited opinions.
  • Be safe – continue to practice safety measures from washing your hands and wearing a mask to wearing a seat dot every time you get in your car. No one is invincible or exempt from the clutches of death
  • Go hard or go home – do you have the faith to live your wildest dreams? Take time to discover that spark that gives your life meaning and ride the momentum that comes with it. Life is precious and the time we have is a divine gift. Take this time to live life more abundantly, dream big, find your purpose, and share it with the world.
  • Practice gratitude – 2020 was a shit show but there’s no guarantee that 2021 will show up any differently. Be thankful for each moment spent connecting with loved ones. Be grateful for each day you have to seize new opportunities. Be grateful for your life regardless of circumstances because there is someone out there who would switch places with you in a heartbeat.

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