Ep#036 Good Bye 2020! Reflections, Big Lessons and Takeaways
Wow! What was that? Many predicted that 2020 would be the year of “perfect vision”, of “blinding clarity”. It most definitely was because it shined the light of awareness on outmoded ways of understanding our lives as well as the world around us.
In this final show of the year, I share my big lessons and takeaways that I hope we can use to reset our lives for the better. I invite you to do a short empowering self reflection that you can use to begin the process. And at the end of the episode I share my new group program that starts Jan 20th designed to help you thrive and not just survive the new normal as we begin 2021.
New Program Starts Jan 20th:
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Welcome to the Soul Science Nutrition Podcast, where you’ll discover that when it comes to your health, you are so much more powerful than you’ve been led to believe. And now your host, she’s a holistic nutrition and lifestyle coach, chef author, and Yogi, Christine Okezie.
Christine Okezie (23s):
Hello, and welcome to the Soul Science Nutrition Podcast. In fact, welcome to the last episode of the podcast in 2020. And so thank you so much, taking a moment now to express my gratitude and appreciation for all your support for your ratings, your reviews, your feedback, and just feeling really appreciative of you and giving me the opportunity to put these messages out into the world. I’m hoping that they’re uplifting, inspiring and empowering for all of you. So I thought I’d take a moment. And in this last show to really kind of muse about some key lessons and takeaways in 2020, because, Oh my goodness, here we are coming to the end of what has been one of the most turbulent disruptive and just plain crazy years.
Christine Okezie (1m 12s):
I’m sure you’re in the same position. I am. It’s a year that none of us will ever forget a year that will serve as a pivotal point for so many a year that catapulted the subject of health and wellbeing to really number one on people’s radar. And without a doubt, awakened our consciousness in just unprecedented ways. So I wanted to share some of my biggest lessons and takeaways, and, you know, as people have said, it was the year 2020, the year of perfect division blinding clarity, it definitely was, this was the year that shine the light of awareness on outmoded ways of understanding our lives as well as the world around us.
Christine Okezie (1m 59s):
And some of these realizations were joyous and liberating. Others were sad and quite dark and devastating. The global pandemic, the Harbor is a racial violence. They laid bare for all of us to see the injustices and inequities of our country and of our world. COVID 19 stripped away all the things that we’d taken for granted, all the things that we had grown so accustomed to having whenever we wanted through the elimination of so much, you know, what we know now is extraneous stuff it’s shipped away. The familiar, the routine, it clarified our relationship with ourselves.
Christine Okezie (2m 41s):
We were forced to confront some long-lasting attitudes and see our habitual responses to stress and our default coping mechanisms for that matter. I mean, all of a sudden the chronic busy-ness and external cues that validated our okayness, our sense of self, all of that faded. And we were compelled to examine more of our inner world than perhaps ever before. Also gone overnight was the automatic excuse of, I don’t have enough time, you know, to read more, to cook more, to get more fit, to meditate, to explore a long lost hobby.
Christine Okezie (3m 23s):
This unprecedented slowdown became a divine invitation to deal with the things in our lives that we’ve long been avoiding. And so there were opportunities to repair and reenergize relationship, as well as a front row seat to watch those relationships that lacked foundation wither and fall away bottom line is there was a powerful invitation to raise our consciousness. We were faced with this million dollar question in the face of all of this, who are you? How will you spend your time and grow as a person?
Christine Okezie (4m 3s):
So here’s my list of the big takeaways. Number one, mental health is priority. Number one, it was a big spotlight on what really drives our wellbeing and a, it ignited a collective appreciation, I think for the need to prioritize caring for our psychological and emotional health. And to that end is the second lesson. And that is self-compassion self-compassion is medicine. And this was the year of self-compassion or at least learning to practice it because practicing self-compassion was what was needed most in the toughest moments, we weighed more, we earned less, we acted out more, we cried more.
Christine Okezie (4m 47s):
We self soothed ourselves in not so great ways. We all had our share of trauma or re trauma. And it’s in these trying times where self-compassion we found is needed the most mindfully acknowledging the difficult emotions and showing kindness to ourselves. You know, a key component of practicing self-compassion is feeling our shared humanity. In other words, when we were in our darkest moments, we could put our hands on our heart and say, other people are feeling this way too. And certainly the events of 2020 brought out all of this feeling of shared humanity in all of us, which brings us to lesson number three, what affects one affects us all 2020 gave us lessons to experience the escapable network of mutuality.
Christine Okezie (5m 40s):
It was a paradox we had to social distance. And at the same time, we got the powerful lesson. That together was the only way through our individual attitudes and actions matter so much because we are part of a collective. And we saw through so many of the events and experiences that whatever affects one directly affects all indirectly. That humanity by nature is interdependent. That we’re waking up to that notion that we all create and share the same world. These lessons of oneness mutuality solidarity.
Christine Okezie (6m 23s):
We learned hard because we saw the cost and the high toll of division, the cost of habitual othering. And so now we have this heightened awareness of how our individual actions matter in the collective. So lesson number four, don’t take anything for granted. I don’t think there’s much to expand on there, right? This was the year of counting your blessings. You know, for me every day that I could just be thankful for food, for health, for health care, for a home, the ability to earn a living, a loving family, don’t take anything for granted.
Christine Okezie (7m 7s):
One of the most profound and, and deeply important lessons, I think from this year and to that turn renewed appreciation that health is wealth. I mean, self care that is, let’s say just nutrition, sleep relaxation. Well, none of this is extra. This level of self care, this appreciation for our health and wellbeing is just as important as anything else and everything else, the next lesson or takeaway learn to embrace uncertainty.
Christine Okezie (7m 46s):
Otherwise you will suffer, you know, the most common phrase I found myself in conversation either with myself in my own head or with folks around me was the phrase, “I don’t know”, anytime that you tried to figure out what was going to happen next or predict or make meaning of whatever headline or whatever development was happening around us, this common phrase, which just ended up with, well, “I don’t know”. I had to accept that the only certainty is uncertainty and yes, is that kind of a very philosophical or traditional, you know, maybe spiritual notion.
Christine Okezie (8m 35s):
The truth of the matter is I think in 2020, that became pretty clear that unless we were going to be okay with not knowing we were going to be driving ourselves crazy. So that was the practice, which brings up the related lesson, which is peace really is only in the present moment. And so I found that honestly, that the relief that we seek comes when we stopped trying to predict what’s going to happen next. And it also means stop trying to make intellectual sense of everything that happens.
Christine Okezie (9m 15s):
And the moment that we cease those mind games, that’s the moment that we can shift the gear in our mind and step into the only place within ourselves where peace and contentment exists. And that’s in the now moment, which leads us to the next lesson, which is yes, meditation, mindfulness, yoga, prayer, all non-negotiables quite frankly, in my self cared tool kit, any mind, body practice that gets you out of your head, connected to your body so that you can be in charge of your mind and have some say in how to regulate your emotions.
Christine Okezie (10m 1s):
This was key in 2020, we got the reinforcement that in order to navigate rapid change uncertainty upheaval in our lives, we need to operate from the wiser part of our psyche. Our intuitive mind was the truly, the only way to navigate. And what helped in that area as well was less than number nine, which is nature heals. So I am so grateful for the opportunities that I had to spend sailing. One of my passions on the water, you know, weekly on the Hudson, hiking in the woods with my dog, walking with my dog, just in the neighborhood, or just sitting in the backyard, you know, feeling the warm sun, staring up at the trees, nothing before this year ever really brought home how important nature is and what medicine it really truly is because, you know, when you reflect on it, we are not part of nature.
Christine Okezie (11m 11s):
We are as human beings nature. And that lesson of course, was for me personally, but then another opportunity to see the collective lesson in that, which is the impact of COVID-19 on the planet. It really highlighted the impact we as humans have with our modern day living the shutdown, you know, and as we all witnessed in awe the dramatic accelerated healing of the planet, the cleaner air, the cleaner oceans, the whole accelerated system of healing that happened in our ecology.
Christine Okezie (11m 52s):
And finally, you know, lesson number 10 or takeaway of this crazy year, 2020 is that joy, joy is found in the most quiet, simplest moments of life. I will forever be grateful for the chance to spend, you know, this time with my kids, we played Scrabble and boggle and see our lovely dog Houdini. I think he was the one who truly, truly, truly loved the pandemic shutdown. He got one, two, sometimes three walks a day. He was never left alone.
Christine Okezie (12m 32s):
It missed our company in our lockdown, but truly that the most simplest moments in life sitting in the backyard, cooking, baking the lots of opportunities to just sit and have really good heart to heart conversations. Yeah, joy it’s, it’s really quite, you know, remarkable, but it’s the living. It’s the moments. It’s the leafy things that remind us that we don’t need a whole lot of stuff to connect to that. So my hope is that, you know, I take these new learnings, this new level of awareness, and that you all do the same, that we embody all the lessons that we can take from 2020 and use them to reset, to reset our lives for the better.
Christine Okezie (13m 19s):
And that we spend more moments in. Self-reflection asking the important questions, who am I, what is my life purpose? What matters most to me, what choice in this moment brings me the greatest joy and aligns me with my truest expression of myself. And of course it is indeed a sobering call to action to take stock of the role that you will play in weaving fortifying the collective social fabric for the highest. Good. So my thought we could take some time to do a quick reflection as we close.
Christine Okezie (14m 3s):
The first one is what do you want to take away with you? When all this is over, there was a lot in 2020 that I know you’re happy to put behind you, but really take a moment now and call up all the silver linings. What has worked for you? What were the hidden gifts in 2020 second inquiry is what do you want to feel more in 2021? Peace, maybe less overwhelm, Maybe more connection or contentment, Whatever it is, Ask yourself.
Christine Okezie (14m 55s):
What are the thoughts, the mental attitudes or behaviors in the past that have elicited these feelings? And then finally, How can you invest in yourself? What needs your attention most right now, I can tell you that. I think most of us need to give our bodies and our minds some much needed rest and relaxation. So Ask yourself, what do you need to replenish your energy and what will give you your sea legs for what’s to come in 2021.
Christine Okezie (15m 43s):
And along these lines, I’m excited to share with you my brand new offering, that’s coming next month. And it’s called find calm and restore vitality yoga therapy for balancing hormones. It’s a seven week live offering online that starts January 20th. It meets weekly on Wednesdays, and you can choose from a day or an evening session. In these sessions, we’re going to use the yoga tools of pranayama meditation, mantra and kriya integrated within my holistic health coaching framework. So we will use the breath to circulate energy, nourish the brain and boost our immune system mantra and meditation.
Christine Okezie (16m 26s):
To help you break through the mental and emotional blockages and kriyas to move our bodies and interrupt those stress response patterns so that we can restore the natural rhythms. The practice is taught in the Kundalini yoga tradition. It’s not gym yoga, it’s not religion. You don’t need to be super flexible or be able to do handstands. And it’s not spiritual dogma at the core Kundalini, yoga and meditation is a technology for health and wellbeing that works by reconnecting you with you. So I’d love to see you there.
Christine Okezie (17m 7s):
I’d be honored to be of support to you as we go into the new normal of 2021. It’s so important to take care of ourselves in ways that really make a difference. And you can check out all the details of my program on my website, which is www.energeticnourishment.com. I want to wish you a happy, healthy, and peaceful new year. I’ve got some amazing guests lined up in January that I can’t wait for you to listen to. So again, sending you all the peace, strength and blessings for a wonderful year to come.
Christine Okezie (17m 49s):
Thanks so much for listening. Really appreciate you.