Looking Back in 2020: A Year of Challenges and Gratitude
Life and Happiness,  Well-Being

Looking back in 2020: A Year of Challenges and Gratitude

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As the year 2020 ends, we may find ourselves looking back to all the events that have happened around us. Many of us wait for better days to come, for grander years to embrace.

We endure only on the premise that we have to keep looking and moving forward until those better days are at our doorstep. Good and bad things have happened. Even though for some, a lot of unfortunate were shown, it’s still what made us who we are in the end.

You would probably agree when I say that 2020 has become a sh*tstorm full of disappointments, bad news, and an unending wave of problems that came our way.

Looking back in 2020: A Year of Challenges and Gratitude
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Nevertheless, it’s still up to us if we choose to end this year with regret and negativity or to carry on with hope and a little bit of gratefulness for the next coming year.

Now, we’ve come to our last month of the year. Who knows if the next one will turn out better. So this month, I encourage you to take a breather and spend your remaining days of this year contemplating and remembering the things that were brought to youβ€” to us.

The situations we’ve been through, problems we surpassed, and the painful moments we’ve endured either alone or with our loved ones. I believe December is the month of looking back to what we have become, how far we have come, and just reminiscing the good and the bad and being grateful, still, for all of it.

So if you’re one to look back one last time and try and be thankful for what this year has made out of you, sit tight and have a good read with me. πŸ™‚

2020 and the things we have learned

Believe it or not, this year has made me a whole different person who looks at life now differently. Firstly, I just want to put it out there, 2020 made me love blogging the way I never did before. It’s one thing that became very special to me.

This year is obviously the year that we have made time for ourselves more than any other else. We focused on our health, our wellness, and our loved ones.

We learned to value our friends more even though we did not see each other often. This is the year that we have learned to care and reach out to our friends and our people who needed more help than we could.

This year, we managed to be patient more than ever; to have faith that better days will eventually shine upon us. This pandemic helped us learn the true essence of taking things slow; of letting things come slowly into our lives and learning to sit with them.

Never did we experience not to rush over some things, work, or event for the first time. People were always going somewhere, meeting other people, hustling for work, going to school, and buying new things, justifying what a busy place this world is. But this year was different.

For once in our life, we were still and we were living each day not thinking about so many plans for tomorrow or the next coming days. We’ve known to be okay with the situation that we are in. We became content with the few things that we’re only capable to do at this time because of restrictions. Despite wanting to do a number of things this year.

2020 has given us the power to accept things out of our control. We learned to willingly submit to the idea that even if things didn’t go our way today, someday they will be.

To live each day knowing that nothing is ever permanent, that change is inevitable, and we look forward to the day when we can finally go back to normal.

We learned to live with grief, loss, heartbreak, and disappointments and we have endured all of it ’til the end. In the face of circumstances, we still managed to see the bigger picture and learned to value it. A bigger picture is a means of courage to keep trying and make peace with what’s to come.

This year has made a brave person out of us. We ventured new methods of sustaining for our family. Even tried some alternative ways that would help us, students, academically. And did extra efforts to do things more differently this year.

We didn’t know what this year had in store for us but we faced it head-on and welcomed it anyway. All the new ways we needed to do made us feel lost for a while. Yet, we still found our way back.

We adapted new ways and were still able to do great in our lives. Our setbacks have made us stronger than ever for our family and most especially for ourselves.

We have set apart our differences and were strong enough to acknowledge our weaknesses and our shortcomings during this time. Now, we’ve come so far and did so great that we deserve a little appreciation for ourselves.

Even if you think you didn’t do well enough this year, believe me, you could have curled up in your bed and waited out the storms that passed. But you didn’t. You got up and made the best out of what you have every single day.

2020 and the things we are grateful for

Now that we are here, what would you like to say? Maybe you like to say, “2020 I’m so done with you!”, or maybe, “2020 is one of my favorite years!” Well, me, I’d love to say that I can’t wait for the new year to come.

I can’t wait to just put it all in my rearview mirror. I want to continue looking forward to what the universe would present to me this coming year.

This will be of history. One of the biggest highlights of the past decade, but hopefully not just because of the pandemic. I want this year to be remembered as something that gave importance to the things that we often overlook in our lives.

This is the year that showed us what it would be like if we had less than what we have or less control over what we can do. Yet we learned new ways to cope, discovered some new passion, and found a few things that we love doing.

All that said, there are still so many things we can be grateful for. The strength that we gathered, the people that helped us along the way, and the unwavering faith that we developed in ourselves.

We turn to our little gratitude list before this year ends. Once we remember all of them, we also remember that it was all worth it after all. Being grateful creates resilience out of us and provides us the strength we need to endure another year coming our way.

The holiday season is finally here! πŸŽ„πŸŽπŸŽ…We understand that this holiday season can both be a source of joy and anxiety…

Posted by Unpopular Opinions on Sunday, December 13, 2020

What about you, friend? What are the things you are grateful for this 2020? I would love to know about it! Comment down below how 2020 made you feel, and how this year was for you.

Look back one last time before this year ends. πŸ™‚

If you loved reading this, please like, comment, and share!

Looking Back in 2020: A Year of Challenges and Gratitude
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70 Comments

  • nirajshah2003

    This is a brilliant and positive post, thanks for sharing! It is so important to be grateful for the things that we have, and I hope people can take forward the lessons they learnt from 2020!

    • Elle

      Oh, thank u so much for calling my post brilliant πŸ₯Ί hahaha I’ve been too hard on myself these past days. I’m glad you appreciate this post! I absolutely hope for the same. Thank you for stopping by! xx

  • Not-So-Modern-Girl

    This year has been such a crazy time, and I agree- everyone has experienced disappointment, bad news and let-downs. But this is a fantastic positive and reflective article, and I hope 2021 will be a much better year x

    • Elle

      It’s really been one crazy time! I’m glad you liked reading this post, we hope for the same thing. Thank you, Eleanor. πŸ˜ŠπŸ’•

  • Brooke Ressell

    I agree with you. 2020 definitely helped us all work on our patience. I feel like it’s the never-ending year most of the time but it’s only a few short days away to 2021. Hoping we continue to make time for ourselves even when things eventually return to normal.

    • Elle

      Yes, I don’t remember how many times I said, “isn’t 2020 done yet?!” Haha. But now a few more days and it’s done. Yes, definitely I also hope that we dont forget what we learned this year when things return to normal. Thank you for your time, Brooke! xx

  • Shelly Latinovich

    A very thought-provoking post! Thanks for sharing. This year has definitely taught us patience and faith. Yes, it has been a tough year, but I agree with you that there definitely are some positives we can all take away from it!

  • CristinaR

    Such an inspiring post! It was a very challenging year with loss and routine being overthrown, but I must say, that I learned so much about myself. I learned things I wouldn’t have realized if we were not in this situation and I am glad I did! Thanks for sharing xx

    • Elle

      Yes, I absolutely agree. We had very different routines this year. I’m so glad you loved this post, Cristina. I feel the same as you. Thanks for stopping by! πŸ™‚ xx

  • A Capone Connection

    Thank you for sharing your experience. They say that we can’t be sad if we have gratitude in our hearts. It’s a great reminder to look at the positives in a year that was less than ideal for many people. Hoping that 2021 will be amazing!

    • Elle

      Love this! I think it lessens our sadness and drives us more towards acceptance. Gratitude can really change a person. Thank you for sharing this! Hoping the same as well for 2021. πŸ™‚ xx

  • thathappyreader

    A lovely, positive post! I agree that this is the time of year to reflect on the past. I am so grateful that although there are family members with health challenges, that we are all still here to support one another and to be able to celebrate the season even if it has to be from a distance. Thanks for sharing.

    • Elle

      Yes, exactly. We find so many ways to stay connected with each other and it’s a good thing especially for those people around who need us. Thank you so much for being here. 😊 xx

    • Elle

      Thank you so much for this lovely comment, Sophie! πŸ™‚ Yes, I absolutely agree that it gave us more meaningful connections and lessons. I do hope you are well and safe and having a holiday blast, too. Thanks for stopping by! xx

    • Elle

      Hi, Shelly! I know, right? It’s almost unbelievable, but I guess that’s how our magic works. We still notice those hidden blessings despite the turmoil. Humans are amazing. Thanks I’m glad you relate to it, Shelly! 😊 xx

    • Elle

      Hi, Simona! Yes, I agree with you, aren’t they all worth looking at? I think it would help us if we appreciate those linings. I’m thankful you found this post relatable. I hope you learned from this year too, Simona. Thank you for being here. xx

  • Jaya Avendel

    I loved reading about the things you have been faced with and the new things you have become grateful for as the months go by. It is has been a strange year made stranger when I think I am living in history, but family and friends and writing are the things that have helped keep me grounded. πŸ™‚

    Happy holidays to you and yours!

    • Elle

      Love this, Jaya! Thanks so much for sharing. I think you found something important that you held on to despite the challenges too keep you grounded. Keep holding on to it! 😊 Happy holidays to you too! xx

  • A Capone Connection

    There are so many lessons to learn if we are open to them. Thank you for sharing all that you have learned in 2020. I’ve been able to see many blessings in the situation as well. My youngest daughter is leaving for the Marines next month and this year has given us so much time to spend together, that we would have NEVER had otherwise. Hoping 2021 is filled with new blessings.

    • Elle

      Hi Kellie! To be honest, I kinda liked being with family too. Haha πŸ˜‚ and yes!! Hobbies that we learned to love, and we gave time for it. That’s self-love right there. Thanks so much, I’m very glad you liked it. Thank you for being here. Happy holidays to you, Kellie. πŸ€— xx

    • Elle

      I totally agree with you. In the end, we have power over our feelings and our minds. How we approach things and how we let outside factors affect us. Thank you for your wonderful thoughts, Monique! xx

    • Elle

      Hi, Benjamin! Don’t worry about catching up, you didn’t miss anything. Thanks so much for being here. I sure hope you still had a good year of looking back. πŸ™‚ xx

  • Retirestyle Travel

    I like how you linked to the related posts. This year has been enlightening in many ways and I also feel gratitude

    • Elle

      Haha, yes I thought so too that my related posts would be very helpful if I put them that way. πŸ™‚ Thanks so much for appreciating it. I’m glad you feel grateful, it can really be a powerful feeling. Stay safe! xx

  • Beaton

    2020 been a crazy year… But who knows if it wasn’t for the craziness maybe we would never have met on the interwebs 🀣🀣
    This has been a year of clouds and silver linings
    Happy Holidays
    ~B

    • Elle

      Hahaha I know, you’re one of the many great bloggers I met and learned A LOT from, this year. One of the silver linings. πŸ™‚ xx

  • Sara James

    Just like everyone else, your post is relatable, interesting and simple. I started blogging at the start of this year too, and it has not just kept me busy, but has connected me to some wonderful people virtually. Wish you wonderful year ahead, Elle:)

    • Elle

      Hey, Sarah! The connections with wonderful people are probably what I loved most about blogging. I loved it and loved them, and I learned a lot from them. Thank you so much for appreciating this post! Wish you all the best in return. πŸ™‚ xx

  • Juliette

    Great post, and very true about everything. Even though this year has been crazy and has brought a lot of grief and challenges, it did allow us to pause and slow down, which is something we all needed to do 😊 Thanks for sharing your thoughts and impressions, I wish you all the best for the coming year!

    • Elle

      Hi, Juliette! thank you so much for being here and appreciating this post. I loved the part where we learned to slow things down, too. I wish the same for you, Juliette! Best wishes. πŸ™‚ xx

  • Paul Wilke

    It’s true that as shitty as the year was for most of us, me included, there are always highlights and positives to find as well, if we are willing to look for them. You’re right to take a moment to focus on those bright spots, and it’s a reminder for me to do the same. Thanks for your wisdom, Elle! Merry Christmas and Happy New Year!

    • Elle

      Hey, Paul. I must say, I missed you being here. :)) I’m so glad you loved reading this post. I too have had a rough year, and no matter how hard it takes to look for those positives, I think we should take time to do it. Thanks so much for being here, I appreciate it! Merry Christmas and Happy holidays to you. xx

  • Sylvia

    2020 put school on hold for me and it’s something I waited four years for. I was so angry that covid messed my plans up but little did I know that this year that seemed like it was only a “sh*tstorm” changed me.

    I took classes, I gained clarity on what I want to do with my life, I found a community I work with, just now finding new bloggers, I made new friends and became calm, satisfied while looking for more for myself, and confident of the things that I do.

    Never did I think that all this growth will happen in one year and to think that it happened in the last months of the year is just mindblowing.

    I’m honestly grateful for a lot. The fact that I am still alive is a gift!

    I cannot wait to see what 2021 holds for me. I pray it’s all goodies!😁

    • Elle

      This is very relevant to me. Going back to blogging is one of the many things I’m also thankful for this 2020. May you have all the goodies, my friend! πŸ˜€ Thank you for sharing your beautiful thoughts. xx

    • Elle

      Momshie Janis, thank you so much for this wonderful comment! I’m very much thankful that I met you here on WordPress too! Happy New Year to you and your lovely family! Stay safe and God bless! πŸ™‚ xx

  • Obinna Anyaibe

    Even if I hate to admit it, I can’t deny that 2020 wasn’t entirely bad. I had some good moments last yearβ€”I made a few friends, tried some new things (like anime), and learnt a lot of lessons. I’m most grateful for all of this, and for the fact that I’m still alive. Cheers to a better year!

    • Elle

      You’ve only been watching anime now? Haha don’t worry I didn’t judge πŸ˜€ But it’s pretty cool!! Hahaha Loved this comment, I hope we get to remain grateful this coming year, Shards. Cheers! xx

  • kiki132

    I love that part that says we can choose if we want to end this year with regret and negativity or carry on with hope and gratefulness. It’s definitely the latter for me. I’m thankful for 2020 and looking forward to more wins this year!

  • mindbeautysimplicity

    I’m with you, 2020 changed me as a person. It forcefully turned my life upside down which in turn made me rethink pretty much everything. And as frustrating as it seemed, I think change is like that sometimes. But later, you realize it was the best thing for you.

    • Elle

      I love this! Yes, change really bends us sometimes. Sometimes it’s uncomfortable as hell. But that’s the way it is, that’s what makes us resilient yet adaptive. And we can only hope that perhaps it is for the best. Thank you so much for sharing this πŸ™‚ xx

  • Lisa's Notebook

    Despite everything, 2020 wasn’t all bad for me. At the time of writing I have my family and we are safe and well. And the chance to spend so much time together last year was something I will never forget and always cherish πŸ™‚

    • Elle

      Exactly. 2020 made me spend more time with my family too, which has been a long time since the last (5years ago) because I’m staying in a different city where I study. I don’t always go home. And I will surely remember the months that I bonded with my sisters. :)) Thank you so much for sharing this! xx

  • Ming Qian

    I am grateful that 2020 has taught me to become more adaptable in the face of change. My friends know that I hate change, and I tend to panic and freak out whenever things don’t work out as planned. However, 2020 and all of its ‘surprises’ conditioned me to roll with the punches. And of course, blogging comes with its set of unforeseeable challenges. I have definitely come out stronger, and I am excited for what 2021 has to offer!

    And of course, I am grateful to have made so many blogger friends online. I hope to meet some bloggers irl, including you, someday! πŸ™‚

    • Elle

      Ming! I absolutely love this comment, thank you so much!! And you know, I once hated change too. It gets me very anxious when some things are unexpected and different from what I expected or planned out. Especially when I’m the type who overthinks about everything before I do or plan things. It can really be frustrating. I’m so glad that we both finished the past year with great things that we learned and carry up to now, and who knows we can take it with us for life. 2020 has given us life-long lessons and I’m thankful for it.

      And YESSSS, the community is awesome and I’m faithful to it. I hope to see you soon one day, Ming! I hope it happens! πŸ™‚ *cross fingers*

  • PoojaG

    Great post Elle! I think 2020 has been an extremely difficult year for a lot of us, however, all the things we faced allowed us to grow as people and to be more grateful for what we have.

    • Elle

      Hi, Pooja!!! Thank you so much!!! hihi I agree, all the growth and gratefulness is what we have harvested out of the past year and I think those are very helpful things we can carry for the rest of our lives. πŸ™‚ xo

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