2020 is cancelled.

Besides the fact our age doesn't count this year, 2020 has certainly been a disappointment. If only we knew as we rang in the new year with fireworks and high hopes for the next decade what was really in store.

More than six months since COVID struck and we're still hiding from our neighbours and blowing an artery trying not to sneeze in public. Bushfires, health pandemics, black lives matter protests; it sure is a year for the history books but between cancelling holidays and ordering face masks on The Iconic, there has been a few revelations buried amongst the madness.

1. Life really is short. We can plan, we can worry, we can procrastinate or wait until the timing is perfect but the long of the short of it is, it's all going to end. Why wait to change careers or start that course you've been thinking about? There could literally be a global health pandemic just around the corner and if that doesn't teach us to stop procrastinating and live life to the fullest right now then I'm not sure what will.

2. Invest in friendships that feed your soul. Us introverts had it good for a while. No obligation to attend large social gatherings and rather plenty of time for reading and being left alone. Although after about a month of isolation, I started to realise that connecting with the people who truly feed my soul was what was going to get me through lockdown with my sanity in tact. Even us loners get lonely and it's easy in today's world to lose real connection when we live so much of our lives through Facebook or email. Picking up the phone or going for a walk with a loved one beats liking their Instagram post a zillion times over. Don't forget that.

3. There's no time like a global health pandemic to face your demons. If there's one thing that COVID has done well, it's been to slow us all down. This can be quite confronting if a busy work schedule or travel has distracted you from facing your problems (guilty!) Everyone has their demons and there's nothing like a whole lot of time stuck at home to realise it might be time to face them. Psychologists and Counsellors are offering over the phone or walking therapy sessions at the moment and you can get ten free sessions through your GP with a mental health plan which is amazing! Don't put it off any longer if it's been in the back of your mind.

4. Apparently it is possible to save money. I am totally that kid who earns $5 for mowing the lawn once and goes straight to Kmart. During COVID, saving money was almost enforced. We didn't need petrol, we didn't need make up and we certainly couldn't eat or drink at restaurants. It's much easier to save money when things aren't available to us but maybe you could still cook dinner before you go out for drinks on a Friday night or go without a takeaway coffee every day. If we can learn some good habits from this year then it makes it all a little more worth it (right?)

5. Less is more. Friends, family, home cooked meals, walks, gardening, board games. It may feel a little mundane sometimes but moments with loved ones or time spent cooking or doing home projects are what keeps us grounded and connected to our families. I know that home schooling was an absolute ball ache and too much time with any partner can be a slippery slope to smothering them with a pillow during the night but let's face it, more time at home with family is something you'll never regret and most people I talk to can agree with me on that.

This year was not what we expected in so many ways but I'll give it to you 2020; you certainly taught us some valuable lessons and if we can carry that into 2021 then I think we're in for a bang up year ahead.

Here's to a happy and healthy you,

Alyssa x