• Judith Zucker, LCSW

2020 Lessons to Take Into 2021

Over the past few weeks, I caught myself thinking, “My life will reset in January. Improvement is on the horizon! I just need to get through 2020.” While many of us may find ourselves thinking similar thoughts, I realized that my mindset might need the reset.

I was so busy looking ahead that I failed to reflect on the value of the present. In addition to the exhaustion of the disorder and confusion around us, my focus on waiting for happiness in the future was draining me.


I was relying on circumstances outside of my control to dictate my happiness, which left me in a heightened sense of stress and worry. Instead, I have the power to determine the impact of my year, in the here and the now.

As I reflected on 2020, I noticed several valuable lessons I learned as we move forward into 2021.


Find Your Calm in the Chaos

What re-centers you when you feel that your world is spiraling out of control?

Take a deep breath. Stretch your body from side to side. Release the tension from your neck and shoulders. Notice how your body responds as you inhale and exhale, grounding yourself to your present reality.

Go for a walk or run. Express yourself through writing, drawing, or painting. Call a friend or family member who supports you and share how you are feeling. Allow yourself healthy opportunities to release the adrenaline and tension that often accompanies our overwhelming circumstances.


Slowing Down for Connection

How has 2020 forced you to slow down and connect to your family or friends, purpose, or interests?

Prior to the pandemic, many of us kept our schedules full, almost as a testament to our productivity. 2020 required us to exercise our creativity and reignite our interests outside of our usual routine. We found time to prioritize rest and self-care.


Our slow down this past year reminded us of the importance of meaningful relationships, and encouraged us to discover intentional and flexible spaces in our schedules to connect with our friends and family in new and unique ways.

Managing the Mindset

In what ways can you adjust your mindset to focus on joy, contentment, and gratitude found in the small moments of your everyday?

We are surrounded by collective fear and loneliness. Despite the challenges we are encounter, let’s consciously seek out or create our own joy and manage our perspective on the world around us. Find gratitude in the blessings you’ve experienced, and practice contentment in your relationships, possessions, and circumstances.

Choosing joy, gratitude, and contentment will elevate your own positivity and satisfaction in life.

As we move into 2021, hold fast to the valuable lessons you learned this past year and celebrate your resilience!

If you are searching for someone to process this past year with, or if you would like to discuss how to move forward into 2021, please reach out. I am here for you!


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