10 Lessons learned in 2021
I’ve spent a better part of this festive season detached from the digital world. Other than the occasional movies, a lot of my time has been spent hanging out and thinking. Thinking with the purpose of trying to discern what it is I truly want. What fears I harbor…why I harbor those fears. What I want, and why I want it. Trying to understand the conditioning I have and how it came about. I’d say, for the most part, it’s been pretty successful.
For starters, I’ve spent less and less time on Twitter. I don’t remember the last time I checked my emails and I barely use my phone. The result of which has been gaining a bit more clarity around, and especially, on the things I do not want. I haven’t quite yet figured out what it is I want…but I think I am ready to let go of certain fears I held on to for so long. Above all, I can hear myself again…in my head, if that makes any sense at all.
So here are 10 things I learned this year
Everyone’s responsible for their own emotions
For a long time, I have always been burdened by other people’s emotions. I think we can all agree that the general consensus is not to be an asshole (although I can be one sometimes). Help out where you can, be kind, be considerate, and the likes. But that’s as far as I go. I have my own emotions to process and I should allow everyone the chance, courtesy, and responsibility to process their own and communicate it when they can. More importantly, to understand that I should not bottle in my projections of what I think people might be feeling. What I say and do is my responsibility. How you process and view them is your choice and responsibility.
It’s okay to let go
Some projects don’t work out, you outgrow some relationships, some experiences don’t mean as much to you as they once did, you can switch jobs or even careers…I am learning to understand that it’s okay. Be present in the moment, and if you must let go then do so. Do not be too attached.
I think anyone who has been to therapy can agree with this sentiment. Find a professional that you feel understands you and work with them.
Nobody wants 100% honesty
People think they do, but very few people can handle 100% radical honesty. Most people want to hear the truth in so far as it amplifies their viewpoints.
It’s okay to take breaks
It’s fine to completely detach from the world and take some time off to yourself. To hell, if the whole place burns down. Prioritize your sanity and especially mental wellbeing above everything else.
We are all going through shit, allow people to clean up after themselves
Allow people the courtesy to grow through their own adversity and challenges. We all have growing pains we have to endure, don’t deny other people theirs.
Lend only that which you’re willing to loose
I am not sure an explanation is required for this…but 2021 reaffirmed this lesson for me.
A lot of who we are is influenced by social media
I don’t think most of us realize just how deeply social media cuts in our lives. So much of what we believe in is a result of the people we follow on Twitter or Instagram. No, not every man is misogynist, and not every feminist is out to see that all men burn. But social media will have you believe this by constantly throwing you the extremes. Be conscious of who you follow and what you read. Take time to filter the kind of information you consume. Also, Twitter is not a real place and the world is much different IRL.
Life is about opportunity cost
Life is all a game of opportunity cost — You can have anything, but not everything. For everything you get, you have to forgo something else. Ergo, make your choices wisely because you have to live with the consequences
Ask for that which you want
Be clear in what you want, and articulate it. You don’t simply get it because you deserve it.
Be in spaces you feel loved
I have learned that nothing beats the company of people who genuinely love you and want the best for you. As I get older, I get weary of fighting for my space in people’s lives. I also realize I am constantly getting worn down by fighting. I’m making it a point to be more and more in spaces that bring me peace and in which I feel loved.