2021: Bring it On!

When I awoke on New Year’s Day, I began to scroll through my Instagram feed. There were all the usual New Year greetings, and hopes for 2021, but what struck me was how much negativity there was about 2020. In many ways, this is understandable, as we experienced a pandemic the like of which none of us has seen in our lifetime.

For me personally, 2020 ended on something of a low note. With regard to my business, I experienced the lowest quarter I’ve had since moving from Sydney to Brisbane in mid-2019, and I learned that I have a health issue that won’t be going away any time soon, if at all. Yet I must admit that I look back on 2020 as having been a good year. I know that in part that’s because I’m an innately positive person, an optimist, and my tendency is to remember the good and forget the bad.

Many people assess where they are and what they would like to achieve at the beginning of a new year. I’m not the type of person who really does this as I just tend to keep moving forward and living life a day at a time. That said, I do have a major goal to get back to running my business full-time, though that may not happen as quickly as I would like.

As I thought about my life this morning I realized I have so much to be thankful for. Our family finances are in a positive state and my business is progressing even though it often seems like three steps forward and two steps back. I have good relationships in life with family, friends, and work colleagues. And as regards my health challenge, I’m actually enjoying implementing the lifestyle changes I’m needing to make to stay on track.

I guess our happiness, or our general state of satisfaction with life, is often dependent on our expectations. I can say that our finances are in a positive state, but we don’t own a house, we drive inexpensive vehicles and we are by no means wealthy. I have plans for how I’d like the future to look but it could all change in a heartbeat if another global crisis unfolds.

As you look back on 2020, what’s your perspective?

For those who’ve lost a loved one to Covid-19, that’s something that will always dominate your thinking about the year we’ve just had. For those who’ve been affected in other ways, what have you learned? What will you do differently in 2021 if we end up being subjected to another major crisis? I think in some ways we should expect that life won’t just continue the way it always has done. What if in fact, life will never be the same again?

Whatever your 2020 was like, I would encourage you to take a few moments to reflect. What were the good things that happened in your life last year? Where did you make progress? In what ways did you become a better person? If you struggle to find much positivity, take a little more time to think back over the year. Find something you can grasp with joy and let it inform you as you move into 2021.

Let’s look forward with positivity and hope, realizing that nothing is certain. Life is fragile and subject to change, sometimes very suddenly. How we handle life’s challenges comes down to our perspective. Take the time at the start of this year to adjust your perspective and look forward with anticipation. Life is good.


Norm McLaughlin
Norm McLaughlin
Norm is from Northern Ireland originally and moved to Brisbane, Australia in 2019 after living in Sydney since 2009. He launched Norm's Computer Repairs from nothing in Sydney in 2016 and has restyled the company as Norm's Computer Services in Brisbane. Norm loves walking in nature and is an avid Instagram user, having published more than 2000 nature posts over the last 7 years.

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