2020 has been hectic.
You experienced tragedy, heartbreak, love, bliss, gratitude, and despair.
But I want you to notice one thing:
You are still here to live, laugh, and love.
Express gratitude for this gift.
You made it through one of the most turbulent years to date.
In preparation for 2021, I want to share some lessons that have personally impacted my character.
Build something meaningful, urgently.
At the beginning of this year, I chose to connect two close friends and run the idea of a podcast as a trio by them.
They loved it.
Fast forward to this month, and The 2 AM Podcast is approaching 10,000 downloads with nearly 70 episodes recorded.
I am grateful that things turned out the way they did.
We are building something meaningful, and the work feels like play, an excellent sign that good things are around the corner.
If you want to make the most of the upcoming year, dedicate your time and energy to a project with a mission larger than yourself.
Bet on yourself.
It doesn't matter how many times you’ve failed in the past; continue to invest in your personal development.
The conventional path is not for me, whether it’s going to college, consuming a standard American diet, or adopting mainstream beliefs.
I choose to bet on myself because I know that it will pay off handsomely.
2021 will become a spectacular year for people who choose to go all-in on themselves.
Focus on your craft.
Focus on your mindset.
Focus on creating and protecting healthy habits.
You cannot lose if you approach the new year with this mentality.
Prioritize physical health.
I am grateful to be an athlete and have the mindset of one.
Considering that my father was a physical education teacher at my middle school, it’s not surprising that I became this kind of person.
Others have difficulty taking care of their health because they don’t have a healthy example around them.
From a probabilistic perspective…
Your family likely doesn’t value health.
It’s not your job to change them, but it is your duty to care for yourself.
Expect criticism from those closest to you.
They do it because your development reflects their unhealthy habits.
How do I begin, you ask?
Here are some non-negotiables:
- Sleep by 10 PM
- Replace processed food with steak and eggs
- Train 3–4 times weekly
- Sunbathe for 30 minutes daily
If you aren’t willing to stick to this prescription, consider 2021 a failure.
Develop an interest in Truth.
You don’t get the truth from mainstream media.
In a divisive world, nuance is your best friend.
Leave black and white thinking in the past. It doesn't work and will never get you high-quality results.
Need an example?
Look at the modern state of politics.
Ideology corrupts leaders' minds, and nothing productive gets accomplished because they are too busy butting heads over worldviews.
Truth requires hard work, curiosity, perseverance, and vision to see how it will change your life for the better.
We all deal with past trauma.
It’s taken me years to heal from traumatic events such as my father's death and major injuries on the road to pursuing soccer competitively.
Maybe you grew up in an abusive household…
Maybe you experienced heartbreak…
Maybe you don’t feel like you can move on…
Regardless of what you’ve been through, there is always a solution.
Within every trauma, there is one truth that you must accept:
“If I am not willing to deal with pain, then it will worsen over time until I develop the courage to face it.”
People become addicted because they aren’t willing to face themselves.
Make 2021 the year of sitting alone and having a difficult conversation with yourself.
There is no other way to shed your old skin.
Create clear boundaries.
A boundary protects you from wasted time, unnecessary negativity, and reckless mistakes.
Even as a 23-year-old, I regret the times in my life where I failed to create healthy boundaries between myself and the external world.
More importantly, I realize that the most difficult task is to create boundaries that protect me from myself.
As the saying goes, you are your worst enemy, but only if you allow it.
It’s not a complicated process; set time aside and decide what you are and aren't willing to tolerate from both yourself and others.
Write it down if you must, so long as you do it.
Protect your energy; forget about time management.
I despise arguments from critics who say that I’m energetic because of my youth.
Sure, my age plays a critical role, but don’t discount the work I’ve done.
I cannot live the way most young people do. Hence I walk the extra mile to abide by a healthy lifestyle.
I care for my sleep, training regimen, nutrition, sunlight exposure, and other crucial factors.
Why do I make an effort to do this, you ask?
It’s because energy management matters most, not time management.
If you’re lethargic, nothing gets done. Let’s say you manage to become productive; it still won’t be enough to create excellent work.
Plug the energy leaks before 2021 begins.
Relationships breathe life into you.
The older I get, the more I value time with my close friends and family.
I cannot think of anything more tragic than people who share love growing distant.
Call your childhood friend who you haven’t seen in a while.
Plan dinner for your close friends and family.
Love, laugh, and share priceless memories with your tribe.
Make 2021 the year of social prosperity.
I look forward to the new year.
It’s an opportunity to push the limits of what I think is possible, both personally and professionally.
People who go into the new year with a growth mindset will experience hardship, but they will learn and evolve.
Others who have a fixed mindset?
The new year will be more of the same as it was this year.
Strive for more, my friends.
Despite chaotic societal changes, we will all see it through.
Here’s to a magnificent 2021!