For me, 2020 is so significant that I started preparing for it in the summer of 2019. Beyond just a number, 2020 represents the start of the 3rd decade of the 3rd millennium, and I think that’s kinda cool.
2020 is a blank canvas yearning for your creativity, imagination, and artistry. It is a piece of clay aching for us to shape it. It is longing for our positive and meaningful imprint. What lies before us in a year called “2020” is opportunity, possibility, and potential. On our part, this takes faith, fearlessness, some foolishness, and focus.
I have a bright sense of hope and aspiration for 2020. 2020 lays before us, ready for us to lay brush to canvas and artfully create something of worth and value. We can shape 2020 as we feel led, not knowing exactly what will happen this year, but persevering in our intentions and dreams, as we sculpt and mould. In the same way that a careful house builder or engineer would design a house or build a bridge to proper specs, so we can build the houses and bridges in 2020 which will inspire us, ignite us, and influence us all to the greatness we aspire to, and already possess.
As I have meditated and pondered on 2020, there have been 12 Transformational Principles which have come to my heart and mind, again and again. These Transformational Principles are not my actual goals or aspirations, but they provide a foundation of intention and focus for 2020. They have profoundly impacted my thinking and positioning, and I hope they will do the same for you.
1 – Look At Your Lens
My look determines my life. Many years ago, an ancient proverb revealed that, “The lamp of the body is the eye. If therefore your eye is good, your whole body will be full of light. But if your eye is bad, your whole body will be full of darkness.” Your whole life is “lit” by your perspectives and the lens through which you view the world. When we look through the lens of compassion, we see dignity and value in people all around. When we look through the lens of anger, we see people and things that cause internal angst. In 2020, look at your lens. How are you seeing the people and situations around you? Is it time to reframe or recalibrate your lens in 2020?
2 – Alignment Leads To Abundance
You have amazing capacity for greatness, when you are dialed into your personal sweet spot and strengths; what I call your “LIFEFIT”. Please pursue your LIFEFIT in 2020. Abundance easily flows when you are most aligned with your best self!
3 – Forgiveness Facilitates Freedom
My wife and I moved into a new house in December of 2012. One common thing many experience when moving is that you realize how much stuff you have accumulated. Much of it seemed like a good idea at the time, but when you look at it now, you realize that it’s just weighing you down. Forgiveness is the same. At the time of offense, hanging on to the anger, resentment and pain seems like the right thing to do. But it’s just weighing you down. See, when you forgive, you heal. So, here is the question: Are you ready to heal? Make a list of the excess “stuff” you are hanging on to, in the form of unforgiveness, and simply release and reboot.
4 – Dream and Do
Without a doubt, 2020 is a year for dreaming and doing. Dust off your dreams and pull them off the shelves. Unpack them and make some proactive choices to step out, take some leaps of faith, and seize what you see in your imagination. H. Jackson Brown Jr. said this, and I love it! “Twenty years from now you will be more disappointed by the things that you didn’t do than by the ones you did do. So, throw off the bowlines. Sail away from the safe harbor. Catch the trade winds in your sails. Explore. Dream. Discover.” The reality is that everyone who has ever taken a shower has had an idea. It’s the person who gets out of the shower, dries off, and does something about it that makes a difference. Determine to make a difference in 2020!
5 – Engage and Emerge
There are times when all of us are fully engaged, fully dialed in, and fully focused. When we are, we emerge into the fullness of our potential, capacity, and capability. People are impacted and lives are changed. When we are not fully engaged, we perform at average or even below average, and few positive footprints are left behind us. As a Coach, I work with some who want to “fully emerge” into their fullness but are not yet ready to pay the price to “fully engage”. A fully engaged person will fully emerge. It is inevitable. If it is not worth doing at a fully engaged level, perhaps it is time to reconsider doing it at all! A fully engaged person will fully emerge and be seen, celebrated, and emulated.
6 – Exhort and Encourage
In 2020, like every other year, we can expect sadness, disappointment, and difficulty. We can’t predict the outcomes, but we can predict hardship and lack, stress and anxiety, trials and turmoil. All of this will occur not to us, but to those we care about. Those we are close to. People all around us. In 2020, let’s make it our personal mission, when we see people struggling, to support them. To offer care and concern. To reach out to them, exhorting and encouraging. Remember well the words of George Washington Carver: “How far you go in life depends on your being tender with the young, compassionate with the aged, sympathetic with the striving and tolerant of the weak and strong. Because someday in your life you will have been all of these.”
7 – Creativity and Creation!
The other day, I took a drive that I take at times. Some may think it is a little morbid, but for me, it is transformational. I drove by the local cemetery, and just sat there. As I sat, I thought about all the un-sung songs, all the un-published books, and all the un-patented inventions. I thought of the good ideas set aside for “another day”; of the business dreams delayed for “more favorable conditions”; and the projects procrastinated for what seemed like a “good reason” at the time. Any local cemetery is one of the richest fields on earth, rich in could have been, should have been, and might have been. In 2020, let’s not leave anything on the table. Let’s not allow anything inside to die while we yet live. Pull out your inherent creativity, and create, design, build and produce!
8 – Faith and Follow Through
Some of the inspiration and dreams which passed into the “long night” of the local cemetery did so precisely because when we begin to step out and step up, opposition begins to mount. I’m not sure exactly why. You can be idle and parked for years, and never experience a shred of difficulty. Then, when you move out of “Park” and into “Drive”, all hell breaks loose. Perhaps the universe needs this as some sort of meta-physical counterbalance. Perhaps it is just coincidence or fate. Or perhaps it is because anything that’s worth doing, is worth doing through the difficulties, challenges and trials. So, when you step out in 2020, remember to hold faith, and to follow through. Be inspired by the words of Thomas Foxwell Buxton: “With ordinary talent and extraordinary perseverance, all things are attainable.” When the world says, “Give up,” Hope whispers, “Try it one more time”. Often it is not the best idea or the most brilliant person who succeeds, but the one who holds faith and follows through. Every defeat, every heartbreak, every loss, contains its own seed, its own lesson on how to improve your performance the next time. Remember Perseus, so many years ago: “He conquers who endures”. Conquer by enduring, holding faith, and following through in 2020!
9 – Spirituality Is Sexy
In 2020, nurture and cultivate your spirituality. Be prepared to develop and support the growth of the spiritual side of your being. This may look like attendance to a house of worship or sacred place, but not necessarily. Here I speak of alignment with the basic and intrinsic values common to us all: compassion, kindness, gratitude, integrity, authenticity. I speak of loving your neighbour as yourself, healthy relationships, going the extra mile, and taking time in quiet and solitude for reflection and self-awareness. I speak of cultivating your inner temple as a house of selflessness, open-ness, inclusivity, healing others, and active empathy for all. In 2020, don’t fall for the trap of being exclusively tethered to your electronic devices and social media network. Spirituality is sublime, inspirational, and empowering.
10 – Your Body Is Your Temple
In 2020, remember that we are finite beings with limited capacity and limited levels of energy. We often long to lift the world on our shoulders and simply carry everything, but we can’t. Pay attention to healthy self-care and caring for your physical being. Whatever it takes, keep three keys in clear view: abundant sleep, healthy nutrition, and regular exercise. You deserve it, and those you love will thank you.
11 – Family First
There will be a ton of pulls and demands on all of us in 2020. Our email boxes fill as rapidly as we empty them, and the accumulation of calls to return and things to accomplish seemingly never ends. However, no one is really keeping score, except our family and loved ones. They are wondering if we will set aside undistracted, untethered, and uninterrupted time for them. “Family” is whatever you make it to be. Maybe it is your flesh and blood, or maybe it is the close circle of friends and community who support you and influence your life. Celebrate them. Allow love to flow in you, and through you, to them. Through your glee and unhindered affection towards them, make them feel loved, cherished, and valued. You will make two people happy!
12 – Live and Laugh!
Remember well that there will be lots of opportunities to work, and work hard, in 2020. But please also set aside time for play, celebration, and laughter. It is understood that kids should have plenty of unstructured play to balance out today’s abundance of structured learning and organized activities. In the same way, adults need time to play if they are going to grow, tap into their inner creativity, and not become social automatons. Budget time for living and laughing in 2020!
The Future Is Bright! As far as I know, no one is predicting the end of the world on December 31, 2020. So, I’m going to assume and live as though the future is bright! Amazing possibilities lie before us. 2020 is a year fat with potential and promise! A harvest of abundance and plenty awaits! People who believe, live, speak and think this way will surely attract better results than those who do not. The outcomes are for us to determine!
I love the words of Og Mandino, which are wonderful guidance for us as we travel through 2020:
“Remind thyself, in the darkest moments, that every failure is only a step toward success, every detection of what is false directs you toward what is true, every trial exhausts some tempting form of error, and every adversity will only hide, for a time, your path to peace and fulfillment. ”
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