What a year! 2020 for sure tested and surprised us in unexpected ways. Losing jobs, loved ones and – something that we “introverts” never knew would be so hard -social interactions definitely taxed us to the brink of our capabilities. Or so we thought!
But I am not here to bum you out in your first week of the new year! I’m simply here to remind you that while we might hate 2020, Christening it as the monster we always thought was under our beds, it just might have been one of the greatest teachers this generation has ever seen! Yes Millennials, I’m talking to you! But don’t take me up on my word, go on and read my reasons and let me know if you agree! So here goes:
Being Kind: Staying at home and, as a result, getting more active on social media, made us aware of so many problems that people in the world face. Restaurants and small businesses going out of business, local vendors starved for customers, people getting laid off and more. It gave us a perspective of how fortunate we are and also encouraged many of us to step forward and share that fortune with the ones most stung by the pandemic.
I saw people donating clothes and foods more actively than ever to protect people from the inevitable bite of winter. Some small food stalls like Baba ka Dhaba witnessed the positive power of social media and observed an overnight boom in business (however it may have turned out later), when people came out to support them and – here’s the beautiful irony – help the food stall owner feed his family!
Linkedin was abuzz, and not just by posts seeking jobs, but by people promoting those posts in whatever small way they could. If this doesn’t instill your faith in humanity, what will?!
Family is our first relationship: With most, if not all, of us working from home, a lot of us working in different cities went back to our home towns and families. Even those of us already living with our families realized how different lives we were leading and how little time we were actually spending at home. The lockdown actually gave us a chance to reconnect with our first love- our family. With no rush of getting to the office, those morning coffee chat sessions came back to life! Seeing our parents in the evening post work became a ritual again, as opposed to being too tired post work to spare time for a quick chat! Catching up with your siblings over the weekend coffee was the new date idea! We all knew that family comes first, but this pandemic made us practice what we preached!
We even went a step further and connected with friends we hadn’t spoken to in quite some time!
Feeding our souls: With going out restricted, we had quite some time on our hands to remember the child within us that the hustle of adulthood had long pushed back to our subconscious. We decided to pick up hobbies long forgotten or even better, try out and pick up new ones. We learnt to actually have fun and do what we wanted for so long, but kept making excuses of time and putting off! I know a friend who started making Youtube videos that she wanted to do for so long! Another who started cooking and yet another who found time for fitness! Don’t know about you, but these things definitely inspired me to get back to writing again!
Mental Health Awareness: If you’ve been on social media at all, you already know what I am talking about! While staying at home resulted in an increase in mental health concerns, it also made us quite aware of what it truly means to take care of our mental and emotional health. It shed a light on how anyone can be exposed to psychological issues and how it is nothing to be ashamed of or even hidden. It taught us to start a communication and encouraged us to ask for help instead of putting on a brave face and suffering in silence!
Strength of Relationships: You must have heard of the saying, “you win some, you lose some”. This is as true for relationships, as it is for gambling! And I have a feeling you already know what i’m talking about! This year has undoubtedly tested friendships and put a strain on relationships! Although I have always been a staunch opposer of long distance relationships, even I have had to admit that in a world where everyone is in an LDR by technicality, it has definitely helped refine and judge the character and intent of friends and lovers alike! It held up a mirror and showed us who’s the fairest of them all! Safe to say that the ones with you definitely are!
I don’t know about you, but for me, all this is enough to crown the year 2020 as our tough love practicing guru! My only hope is that when things go back to normal (I hope it’s soon coz i’ve had enough of this bootcamp!), we still remember and practice these lessons! Let’s not tempt nature again, shall we?!
I promise I’ll try and keep my relationship with writing intact as well and you’ll be hearing from me soon!
Till then, stay safe and keep your wits sharp!
The Millennial Cult