Things in 2020 I’m Bringing Into 2021

A lot of people want to forget 2020. For me, I’m bringing three things from 2020 into 2021.

2021Happy New Year, folks!

I know – it’s been a while since my last newsletter. To say that I’ve been busy is an understatement. The last quarter of 2020 saw me giving a number of talks at MeetUps and conferences, for which I’m extremely grateful.

I’ve heard several friends say they want to forget 2020. And I do empathize with the sentiment. As an avid travel nut, I used to travel every month on short jaunts, and also go on 1 or 2 memorable, bucket-list trips in a year. Alas, this was not the case in 2020. Thankfully, I visited family and friends back in the Philippines for three weeks in January of 2020, before the onset of the pandemic.

For 2021, I’ve realized and learned that there are wondrous things about 2020 that I can bring forward into the new year.

My World Opened Up to More Connecting and Learning

Who would have thought that the intersection of a pandemic and technology would expose me to more of the world? Never did I realize that I would meet more people virtually than through actual travel. One of the things I love about travel is meeting people from various cultures and learning their unique points of view.

With the rise of Zoom – and virtual MeetUps and conferences, I expanded my network. I opened my eyes to new perspectives from around the world. And I learned new ways of working from so many talented people from all cultures. All this, for a measly Zoom subscription – compared to the pricey airline tickets, hotels, and other travel expenses.

And I think a lot of people realized this as well. In places where people are free to move about with fewer restrictions (like New Zealand), they are now going to a hybrid model. MeetUps, for example, are now a combo of in-person and virtual – because they see the power of having global perspectives and voices in the room


Keep Growing

Many of us have been in lockdown for a while. Some of it is mandated. And a number of us – like me – have gone extra for one reason or the other. (I’m asthmatic – I honestly don’t want to deal with COVID-19 as a result). And yes, lockdown has been an excellent time to catch up on all those binge-worthy shows on Netflix, Amazon Prime, and the like. (Mandalorian on Disney, anyone?)

But I also utilized the time to learn. I never knew about Liberating Structures, for example, until I came across a couple of fantastic, free virtual meet-ups, like the ones hosted by Anna Jackson and Fisher Qua. I learned new techniques like DASH and pretotyping done by Robert Skrobe. I’ve now incorporated what I’ve learned, and people are loving the additions that I’ve introduced.

And I didn’t learn things for the sake of my career. I also took the time to learn about things that I had a keen desire to pick up. For instance, not only did I successfully give rise to three different sourdough starters (using different kinds of flours, and yes, pun intended). I have also managed to grow as a baker because of the joy of experimenting and learning. (And of course, eating them in the end – hello, Pandemic Pounds!)


Transformations Never End – Be Thankful You Can…and Share!

I had blogged previously about the problem with Agile transformations. Somehow, most people think there is an end state. In the same vein, I can continuously transform and become a better self than I was yesterday.

What 2020 made me realize is that I’m fortunate enough to do this. Not everyone has had the opportunity to do so. Not everyone has a fast speed internet. Not everyone has a capable machine to run Zoom and Mural or Miro boards at the same time. For these – and the space to metamorphose like a butterfly, I am thankful.

And this realization made me think – are there ways I can share and give back to the people and community? Are there ways I can share the good fortune aside from the standard donations of time, effort, and money?

This question is the new year’s resolution I give to myself for 2021. What can I do to be thankful that I was able to transform? What can I do so I can reshare what I’ve learned from so many people who shared themselves in the transformative year of 2020?

So, I’d like to know now what are you bringing from 2020 into 2021? What is your challenge? Feel free to email me – I’d love to know.

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