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SEVEN Lessons from 2020

brown couch with white pillow and blanket and coffee mug

During my time off over the Holidays, I sat down to capture some of the biggest ahh-haas that came out of 2020 for me. I didn’t want to end this year feeling like “I just survived it.” As a life-long learner and committed student to transformation, there had to be something of value. Right?

The most important take away I have is gratitude. So I’d like to say “Thank you.” Thank you for choosing to be here and for the support you gave to me personally and to Life’sWork Yoga this year. Thank you for sharing your journey with me and for allowing me to be a part of yours.

To call 2020 a challenging time is an understatement for many of us. The truth is, I’ve struggled with my feelings throughout this season—riding the emotional roller coaster of confidence to despair often reflective of global natural disasters, national politics, civil rights protests, riots & violence and local COVID positivity rates. I know that if it wasn’t for my daily practice of Yoga Living, I don’t think I could have weathered this year.

Out of the many challenges, I have harvested gratitude, compassion and resilience. Here are SEVEN lessons from 2020 (hit me up on Instagram to let me know which one resonates with you the most or to share some of your 2020 lessons.) 

  1. Self-care is the priority. Self-care is not indulgence or negligence. Self-care is the practice of offering compassion to one’s well-being in tangible and energetic ways. As an extension of one’s personal self care, extending this same care and compassion to others from our abundance (whatever extra we have) is how we build a community of support and authentic connection. As Anthony Fauci said, “Now is always the BEST time to selflessly care for others.”
  2. Attention is energy intentionally applied. What we give our attention to grows. This year I learned to harness my attention and focus even more than I ever imagined I could. I worked hard, yes (i.e. I created 16 digital learning programs!). But I worked even harder to protect the vital energy to which I had access. I scheduled REST regularly. Conserving my energy for the actions I intentionally want to give my energy to was even more important this year. The more structure (habits and rituals) in my day (and life) the less energy wasted.
  3. Structure gives you freedom. The Bhagavad Gita teaches that form is an illusion and yet it is form that provides the firm foundation on which we build the practices of daily living. I have taught the importance in INTENTION for years, but it really proved its value this year when all my systems became moot, and my schedule wiped clean. The foundation of habits and ritual in practice provided a basis from which I could safely assess and determine where and how to shift and rebuild in order to work within the parameters of our “new normal”.
  4. Ask for help. I often tease that breathing is the only requirement. But once breath is established and steady, we might just need to invest in help. I used a lot of props in my practice this year. I hired a Coach, enrolled in a learning program and hired experts to help build components of my business that are outside my expertise (i.e. everything that’s not yoga. Wait, #itsall yoga! LOL!) I also relied on friends to help me reframe mental anxiety, overwhelm and loneliness when the studio was forced to close. I cried a lot of tears this year.
  5. Surrender. One of the hardest things for me to declare is my own greatness. Maybe this sounds contrary to surrender, but what I discovered this year is that surrender is about trusting the process. I am a work in process. Aren’t we all? But being in process also means there is progress in terms of learning new skills, having new insight and seeing opportunities when they arise if we surrender to being in process.Letting go of what isn’t working is as important as embracing what is new, unfamiliar or challenging (Can we call it what it is: HARD!)
  6. Change is always an option. If I don’t like it, I change it– it’s that simple. I’ve done this my entire life. I make decisions. Execute them. If I don’t like it, I change it. Quickly. But when things, BIG things, are outside of our control, change can feel nearly impossible. Even if we don’t know HOW to change, fix, or modify IT, remembering that change is always an option provides a redirection for our attention to reframe the question from love. What CAN I do rather than what can’t I do. If something isn’t working for me, I have the right to change it. And so do you. Even if the thing that isn’t working is a big thing or a big deal to others. If it’s not working for you, change it. 
  7. Opportunities always exist. Oh my, do they ever. This year was filled with abundant opportunities. For the first time ever, the entire world was forced online. What a gift… a lot of the barriers to operating online were broken which opened the floodgates. Going online certainly had its challenges, and it helped a lot of us re=prioritize our commitment to connection, even if it meant we had to find a new way of connection. It’s about learning to reframe our mindset from lack and what ISN’T to abundance and what IS. I call it Reframe from Love and its helped me find the silver lining on many a dark occasion, but also helped me see the opportunity to reach those who previously couldn’t access my service and support.

What lessons are you taking away from 2020? I’d love for you to share some with me. Reply or send me a DM over on Instagram, I’m @lifesworkyoga.

As I close this love note, let me say it again:

Thank you.

Here’s to INSPIRATION & TRANSFORMATION in 2021…

With much love,
Kimberlyn