What did 2019 teach us and what did we learn?

As we speed swiftly toward year’s end, it will be important to pause, reflect, and bask in what we know and all we have learned this year. Trust me, you know more than you realize though sometimes we get so busy being busy that we don’t profit from our mistakes and/or apply what we learned to become our best selves.

I operate under the premise that when we know better, we’ll do better. Here are a few things I know and have learned over the past 12 months:

  • The more I learn, the more I know there’s so much more to learn. I love watching Jeopardy! and I am excited when I get a few answers correct but the champions earn big bucks and know a whole lot about a whole lot. I am envious of their broad base of knowledge.

Experts say if you learn one new thing about a topic every day, you can become an expert on just about anything in a year’s time. What will you become an expert on in 2020?

  • Second, there’s something to that adage “Early to bed and early to rise makes you healthy, wealthy and wise.” Attributed to John Clarke in the 1600s, this phrase urges us to develop good habits.

My problem is I love to stay up late (I give new meaning to “wee” hours) and sleep late but I know now I do well getting up early after the recommended seven/eight hours of sleep. Sleep is restorative and critical for overall good health and I’ve discovered that after a nap, I’m smarter than the average bear.

In our current political climate, the discussion inevitably turns to wealth, the haves and have-nots, money—who has it, who wants it, who shares it, what do we do with it—and after a moment, it all becomes meaningless chatter no matter which side we’re on.

Most of us think that if we just had all the money we needed, everything would be perfect but if we pay attention, we see, like the line from my favorite play, Porgy & Bess, “it ain’t necessarily so.” We’ve watched enough rags-to- riches-to-rags and rich people shows to see that being rich solved some problems, but it was not the be-all, cure-all to make everything perfect.

Here’s what I learned: you CANNOT borrow yourself out of debt, and no matter how much money you make, if you’re not a wise manager, it will take all you make to make it. Did you get that? The lesson today is when you give some, save some, and spend some—in that order, there will always be enough. Probably not enough for a Maserati but enough for what really matters.

  • Third, friends are life-giving and more precious than silver and gold. Cherish and protect them and make time for them. Adversity, prolonged sickness, or hard times will show you who your real friends are, and who can be counted on when the going gets tough. The “ride-or-die” folks know where the bodies are buried because they purchased the shovel and even under threat of bodily harm, your secrets are safe from the tabloids and tell-all books.

When they’re gone, they take part of you with them but their essence remains as a sweet reminder that you have been loved unconditionally.

Finally, you are never too old or too young to make your dreams come true. I read an article about a 104-year old woman who just wrote her first book. Most of us won’t live that long so today live your dreams triumphantly and in brilliant color!

How has 2019 been for you? Share your feelings at #drbondhopson on Twitter and Facebook.

Looking for inspiration, empowerment, uplift, straight talk, an encouraging word to brighten your day? You’ve arrived! Meet Dr. Cynthia Ann Bond Hopson, best-selling author, educator, inspirational speaker, sistergirl–she’s all that and more. All the way from Stanton, TN (you can’t get there from here) to 50 states, six continents and everything in between, she’s wise, witty and altogether wonderful. She enthusiastically invites you to slow down, sit a spell, and share a giggle or two.

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