Written By

Nicola McKenzie

Let’s be honest, 2020 has been a big surprise for us all and was certainly not what any of us wished for.  Do you ever think what your ideal year would look like when the bells ring at midnight on Hogmanay?  It doesn’t even need to be anything over the top, just a realistic hope for the upcoming year.  This year has been so far away from anything we hoped for but, there have been many positives that have kept us smizing throughout.

It’s been a challenging and difficult year for most, however we truly believe that there is always something positive to look at, even in a bad situation.  It’s how you look at it.

We are all capable of seeing the positives, you just need to look for them and more importantly, you need to want to see them.   If you have a constant negative outlook on life, you are far more likely to see the negatives.  We want to help you see the positives that 2020 has had to offer.

Appreciating the smaller things in life

If 2020 has taught us anything, it’s how lucky we are to be in good health.  That also goes for our loved ones.  We have all become more concerned about our families and friends than we are about ourselves and that’s a positive thing in itself.  It has made us compassionate and empathetic towards others. 

Staying at home has given us the opportunity to explore old and new hobbies.  Who hasn’t made banana bread during lockdown or watched Tiger King while drinking an amazing Dalgona Coffee?  There have been so many crazes during lockdown and they have not only kept us busy and entertained but also brought us closer together.  Whether that is as a household playing board games and baking, having a weekly Zoom quiz with your friends, family and colleagues or getting involved in the latest Tik Tok and Instagram trends!

Who has a newfound appreciation for their local neighbourhood?  With many places only allowing you to go so far and for a certain amount of time, it’s certainly let us see that getting out for a 1 hour walk each day can be exciting, beautiful and interesting. This also applies to exploring your country and settling for a staycation trip as opposed to a trip abroad.   When lockdown rules lifted in a lot of places, we were then able to take road trips across the country.  It just shows us that we don’t need to travel far or fly in order to have a good holiday!  

Lockdown and lifestyle

Sometimes breaking bad habits and routines can be a good thing.   Our usual working hours can put a strain on our mental and physical health.  Rushing about trying to catch the early train to work, forgetting your lunch sitting on the kitchen worktop resulting in you having to run in and grab something from the shop where you are spending unnecessary money and wasting time. This all adds so much pressure to your day!   It’s ok to slow down and breathe.  Ok, working from home isn’t always the best but it does have its perks like having all of your home comforts right there when you need them.

Many of us have also taken this time to focus on improving our diets.  Again, being at home is giving us that extra freedom and time to explore with cooking and exercise.  How many of us have taken up a new form of exercise?  Or gone back to an old one you used to do but never found the time for? Now is a great time to do that and get yourself in shape.  Remember, healthy body, healthy mind! 

Another plus is the increase in applications for online courses.   There’s no time like the present for learning something new.  Especially when it’s something you have also fancied learning in the past but there was always something holding you back!  

The world coming together to show their support

It has been refreshing to see how everyone has come together to show their support during this difficult time, especially to our health heroes!   Key workers have been amazing during this pandemic and even though they have always been there helping the vulnerable and sick, it’s been highlighted to us all what these guys do for us.  In the UK the country was united in showing their support by clapping for the National Health Service every Thursday at 8pm.  It was uplifting to see everyone coming together to show their appreciation and love for all our key workers out there, holding the forte and saving lives!  

There were moments throughout lockdown that undeniably put a smile on our faces.  Here in the UK, we were blessed with the legendary Captain Sir Tom Moore, a centenarian who raised over £32m for the NHS by walking 100 laps of the 25m loop in his garden with the support of a walking frame!  Such an inspiration.  You can read all about Captain Tom’s story by reading his new book “Tomorrow Will Be A Good Day”.  What a beautiful and inspirational story and worth a read! 

The positive impacts on the planet

Of course, there have been negative impacts on the planet since COVID-19 hit but, there’s also been plenty of positives to highlight.  

Due to a high number of international borders being closed off and numerous populations restricted to their homes it’s resulted in a reduction in CO2 emissions. According to The Guardian “Emissions fell by a quarter when the lockdowns were at their peak, and in early April global daily carbon dioxide emissions were still down by 17% compared with the average figure for 2019 and emissions for the year to date, from 1 January to 11 June, are 8.6% lower than in the same period for 2019.”  You can read the full article here -  'Surprisingly rapid' rebound in carbon emissions post-lockdown.  Even though it is temporary, it’s certainly nice to know we have given our planet a break it deserves!

Another bit of news that made us all smile was the wild animals roaming free during lockdown.  If you haven’t seen these hilarious stories, you must catch up.  

There were wild boars wandering the streets of Haifa, Israel.  A Kashmiri goat was found eating flowers and hedges in people’s gardens in Llandudno, Wales.  What about the Alligator taking a stroll down an outside shopping centre on Flagler Beach, Florida?  We bet the residents in that area were delighted they weren’t out shopping that day!   There are many more humorous stories you can find online that are bound to make you giggle.  

We are sure there are plenty of stories to share and advice to give on how to keep your chin up and look at some of the positives.  If you have any tips or funny, uplifting or calming stories you would like to share with everyone, please reach out through either our social channels, Facebook, Instagram and Twitter by commenting on our blog post or sending us a direct message.  We would love to hear from you!  In the meantime from everyone here at Trtl, stay safe and keep on smizing!

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