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BLOG: My 2020 Reflections – People, Seek for Help, Adapt, Keep Learning & Be Kind

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In many ways, 2020 has been a very tough, strange and uncertain year for most of us in most parts of the world. 

It has caused so many disruptions in everyday life; but it has also fostered deeper relationships with those whose we care about, challenged and helped build stronger resilience in a company and self, and forced and inspired us to look inside and think deeply about what really matters in our lives.  

I had experienced job redundancy before. I had experienced the pain and joy of giving birth twice. I had experienced illness with whooping cough for two months when I moved to London 10 years ago. I had experienced the loss of my dear colleague, client and relatives before. But I had never experienced a life-changing pandemic like COVID-19 (the SARS  I experienced in Hong Kong in 2003 was not of the same scale anymore). 

On reflection, here are my top 5 lessons learnt from 2020. 

1.     People 

People are really everything we have and what matter the most. Our family, our clients, our colleagues, our partners, our friends and people we meet in our everyday life. So, invest in time to build deeper relationships with those whose we really care about. If you care about someone, tell them and help them, in whatever ways – e.g. writing them a nice LinkedIn recommendation, sending them a surprise thank you card, or just being your positive self to inject positivity around you.  

2.     Seek for help 

Everyone has their own struggles and challenges. Everyone needs a bit of help in some ways. So don’t be afraid of seeking for help when you are in doubt or despair. Someone must be willing to offer their help without expecting anything in return and listen to you. 

In fact, that’s how I started my “Friday Thank You” LinkedIn post during the pandemic. Things have been tough but I realised so many people have been so kind to offer their help, expertise and wisdom in every different way. I wanted to thank them and that’s how I started this habit of thanking people every Friday. So, big thank you! 

3.     Adapt 

The only constant is change. As a good friend who is a mother of four young kids and runs a hugely successful property agency business over the past decade said: “Every business is fragile, no matter how big or small it is, no matter in what stage of your business is.” So true. Any business can be disrupted and gone overnight, just like how COVID-19 has hit some of the hospitality businesses hard without any warning overnight. 

So adapt your business, your services, your financial models, and most importantly, your mindset and attitude, in order to survive, and hopefully to thrive in a longer term, during both tough and easy times.

4.     Keep learning 

The pandemic has already disrupted and changed the world and our daily life in so many ways. During this time, I have learnt and acquired so much new skills, such as creating my own self-videos which seemed to be so odd and unimaginable before, having a company’s YouTube channel, watching all those online self-development and digital marketing courses on YouTube in the evenings, and being super flexible about work and family time when everything is conducted under one roof. 

If we do want to survive and thrive in this constantly-changing world, the only way to keep moving forward is to keep learning. Just learn something new everyday and the right opportunities will appear at the perfect time.

5.     Be kind to yourself

That’s my final thought. When things are tough, we can punish ourselves without noticing, blaming ourselves for the loss of something or someone. Self-love and self-care are really important when things are tough. Be kind to yourself, so we can extend and practise kindness to others who need it more than we do. 

What are the lessons you have learnt from 2020? I would love to hear from you. 😊

I wish you all a Happy, Healthy & Wealthy (in terms of soul & £££££) 2021 ahead.

Much love,

Sally x 

#reflections #lessons #kindness #thoughts #sallymaieryip

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Sally Maier-Yip is the MD and Founder at 11K. She is a seasoned cross-cultural Public Relations Strategist with a mission to help ambitious companies grow in China, Hong Kong and the UK.

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