These days it can be difficult not to compare your life to those on social media, no matter how many times you’re told it is a collection of curated windows into somebody’s life.
This year has proved to be difficult for many, and by the looks of your ‘gram newsfeed and the many videos on TikTok, you’re led to believe that a lot of folk have had a year of tremendous achievement. Maybe they have? Which is fine, and it should be celebrated by them, but also it’s completely normal and fine if the most you’ve achieved this year is getting out of bed every day.
With Christmas Day now behind us and a brand new year on the horizon, it’s only natural that we reflect on the past year. In a more normal time, conversations of prospering at work, or travel, and so forth would dominate. But this year hasn’t been normal, and many of us have lost a job or a loved one.
Our mental health has also been affected dramatically, with loneliness being a major factor
Our mental health has also been affected dramatically, with loneliness being a major factor. Mentalhealth.org.uk state that loneliness in UK adults has risen from 10 per cent to 25 per cent in those surveyed from April to November. ‘Bubbles’ were introduced to allow those living alone to see people, but with conflicting health advice, and those too vulnerable to see people, it has been difficult to know what to do for the best.
During the first lockdown which began in March, there was a sense of guilt if one was not doing yoga via Zoom or picking up a new skill. Quizzes were all the rage over video chat and celebrities were showing us how hard life was stuck in their mansions. It was difficult trying to feel like you were making the most of your time at home.
There was a strange feeling of positivity in the air as lockdown ended and summer arrived, as if the weather would somehow shoo the virus away. It didn’t, of course, and people soon wanted to get back to their routines rather than attempting to learn how to crochet. Indeed, we went into a second lockdown by November with every part of the country living in different ‘Covid tiers’ by the end of the year.
The feeling of not knowing what the next week will bring has only contributed to what you think is being unproductive. And anyway, we don’t have to be guilt tripped into thinking running every day and video chatting friends constantly is the way to be in the current climate because you’re bombarded with other people doing so on Facebook.
Even though this year has been rough, or maybe you glided through it fine, what we all have in common is that it really does not matter if you achieved zilch. Nothing. We may hope for better things rolling into 2021, but even if you find yourself in a similar place to 2020, don’t feel guilty or wasteful because you didn’t do something worthwhile. It will take time to readjust back to normality, whatever that is. And also, there are many people out there in the same situation, so you’re not alone in feeling like you did absolutely nothing with your year.
And finally, have a fabulous and safe new year, whether that be snuggled up in bed asleep or drinking a tipple with a loved one.
Photography by Photomix