The start of the year 2020 was one word: amazing. The most futuristic-sounding year of my time will be the foundation of my pivotal success. Plans upon plans upon plans were made. An entire year scheduled and scripted to a tee.
From celebrating the New Years at the stunning Closenburg Hotel with Maribou State ushering in the new decade to being best man at two of my favourite people’s weddings and spending more time in 5-Star hotel rooms than expected. Father and I planned to expand the family business with me getting more involved in it, dreams of launching a luggage brand with an Indian manufacturing plant and launching my men's fashion line.
Needless to say, everything went up in smoke with the rise of COVID-19.
The year 2020 was planned out so well, and even though it all fell through I did learn, realise and do some amazing and more fulfilling things that have a better platform and pivot that I had imagined.
Despite living with my parents for most of the year, I tend to spend large amounts of time travelling the country or overseas. The forced lockdown got me to sit down with my parents for three meals a day which we rarely do even on a Sunday or holiday. Created memories that I will always cherish such as finding out who has better luck in carrom, cooked and cleaned with mother, accompanied dad when the vegetable truck was outside, caught my dad buying black market cigarettes from a random and then introduced him to my black market guys to get better-priced cigarettes.
I also realised that whilst I (nor anyone in my family) didn’t have any work we still survived due to the level of infrastructure we had built for ourselves over the years. Savings, investments and lean financial planning made us weather the lockdown with no hindrance. Some days we actually lived better than on “ordinary” working days, cementing the fact that stressing yourself out is no good and contentment is key. Reading about how people were suffering made me double-check my privilege and be more grateful and generous.
In my mind, 2020 was going to be the year I launch my success. But it all came crumbling down. The momentum I had reached after the lul of the Easter Bombings the previous year was massive and come March it felt like I hit a wall and I slowly fell like Wile E. Coyote in Road Runner.
From earning reasonably well for a new consulting company to not cashing a single cheque from February to August it was disastrous to all that I had planned above. I lost track of my sleep cycle which I had rigorously mastered the past few months and went back into a state of demotivation.
I questioned myself and my worthiness; If I am not successful, what am I?
After days of moping around, I stood up one day. I remembered my lessons on wellness and mindset that I wrote about before. I needed to strengthen myself, believe in myself. This wasn't the end of the world, it was just a period of time that won’t even amount up to 3–5% of my life, and what is that in the larger scheme of things?
Beginning the year I was working for multiple clients, doing different things across different areas. It was stressful and I could feel the burnout. I wasn’t the kind of person who’d kill myself 5 days of the week and go wild on the weekend. I work when I want, I chill when I want. It’s the simplest equation I want in life.
Being out of work for over half the year allowed me to focus on what I really wanted to do. To work, earn and grow in a sustainable manner that was good for body and soul. Instead of taking almost every job that came my way I was now focussed on jobs that were more beneficial to the large scheme. A slower year has allowed me to focus and position myself for a better future.
Even as this year was a write off work-wise, it was a massive gain in terms of wellness. I look forward to 2021 where instead of planning for the disappointment I remember one of my favourite mantras:
Go with the flow, but control the boat.