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It’s a shame when the Christmas newsletter of a large, well-known organization begins with complaint. The first sentence not only brought me to shaking my head no in disapproval, but also made me grow even deader with every impulse that I had to continue to read the newsletter. Did I read that right? I did.
Farewell instead of closing out the year
„We have never wished for the end of a year, but this year we do!“ Rrrrrummmms. Free ride into the valley of perpetual complaining. Everything is so bad. Oh, no... oh, vey. If this is all that remains of a LIFETIME year – such a beginning sentence of a Christmas newsletter of an organization in such a privileged field – I am downright ashamed.
In addition to other things that I learned in 2020 (and, noticed along the way, learning is an additional great privilege in life), two things were very influential in this year:
- to accept life exactly as it is. I always thought that I was already good at this. Finally, the decision to accept myself as I am, the starting point for the way into my best life.
2020 was, in this regard, a new challenge. Because the essential nature of a crisis, whether a personal one or a global one, is because we don’t have an immediate solution. That you also don't know when it will be over. That one stands entirely unclear in the here and now. For an indefinite time. And yes, of course, this affects us all. Of course, this made me feel insecure. In relation to health and well-being (mine and others’, too) as well as in relation to professional life. I felt a helplessness that I haven't felt in a long time.
- To remain transformable. To follow the flux of life just like water on a riverbed. To not rigidly hold strong to the dead branches of “I wanted this to be entirely different.” So many plans, so many meetings, so many dreams - toppled, canceled, delayed, and annulled.
Here, I revealed myself to be in good position. Yes, this is my favorite question, “How can it still go?” my absolutely true and inspiring companion. In 2020, my favorite question had become like a mantra in the face of missing income, canceled presentation dates and the massive limitation in the social life that had always been very important to me. This question carried me. And created new ways.
Am I now happy, that the year is over? No!
Our reality in life that has changed for each of us is finally not over. I personally am not looking back at a year of horror, but rather to a further year that had been lived. A year of movement, of traversing boundaries, of clarifying, of curiosity, of encounters, of getting things right, of ideas, of courage, of new experiences and gratitude.
Every day in this year, I have lived. And if you’re reading this here, you belong to those that are lucky, that live, learn, and who might love. It’s not about whitewashing something. That we pretend that nothing is happening to us or those around us. What matters to me is that we finally understand again that this is exactly what life is: that something happens to us and to other people. Every day. Sometimes it’s easy to take and sometimes it tests our very own nerve for sanity. Should I then avoid the test? Avoiding my development and growth? Should I avoid my own realizations? My own life?
Crisis makes clear, crisis makes honest
2020 has positioned people at a speed that the best coach could not. A lot of opinion everywhere, but therefore very little position; very rarely did such crystallization occur in regard to who really had to say something (in my field) and who not. Crises make you honest and show you where you really stand and what you are really capable of doing. This happened to me as well, that I arrived at the point where I had to ask myself: And if there really isn’t anything more? If everything that I had built for myself just broke down? If the end of filled presentation halls will become my long-term reality? What happens if I cannot remain a speaker? And the answer was clear: Then that is my reality in life. Then that is the truth, the foundation, the base of my existence where I stand. That’s where I come from. And I go wherever.
Thin ice or thin courage?
Sometimes, I felt like I was on thin ice. It is completely normal that no one had a straightaway handle for all of that which we had to deal with. We were allowed to feel insecure. To have fear. Outrage. And no solution. But there was that moment in which I understood that it wasn’t the ice that had become thin, but rather my courage. That not only circumstances had been becoming solidified but also my world of ideas. That the world turns and turns while I continued to play the role of a rabbit in front of a snake.
2020 had 366 days that had spanned another arch than the one we all expected, hoped, and had wished for, yes. Life had not sworn itself against us, it just showed us all the more what life in its core is actually supposed to be. For that, I am thankful. For that, I am happy. And my view gears towards each day with its possibilities and its wonders, its challenges and its realizations.
I wish you all one thing above all for now and the new year: joy in what LIFE means.
I have never wished for the end of a year and that remains so.
PS: Instead, I am already rather intrigued by the next crazy ideas. Soon, I want to look like a pizza and only write about sex. Why? Coming soon, read here. What are your next crazy plans?