Sunday, 27 December 2020

Things That I am Grateful for, in 2020


"Life surprises us the most
When we refuse to quit
At the face of thunder and hurricane,
Knowing well that every storm
Will eventually run out of rain."

2020 changed our perspective towards life. It made us pause, reflect, and introspect. Apart from Covid-19, we people in Kolkata had to fight the hurricane called Amphan in the month of May which was devastating. Negativity, chaos, restlessness, and fear of the uncertain were looming all around us. And yet, 2020 is the year that helped me discover my inner power. 

In this post, I am going to share 7 things that I am grateful for, in 2020 :

1. Yoga and Meditation

I started doing Yoga regularly in 2019 but this year helped me go deeper into it. As I was determined to keep myself physically and mentally fit this year, I made yoga asanas, pranayamas, and meditation an integral part of my daily life.

I started practicing Vinyasa Yoga (flow of yoga asanas) and embarked on my journey towards Kriya Yoga after reading 'Autobiography of a Yogi'.

I completed the first part of the 4-part Kriya Home Study Course by Ananda Institution founded by Swami Kriyananda. Spirituality helped me keep calm amid the chaos. It taught me to stay stable even when situations and people were not according to my way. 

2. Life-Changing Books  

There was no electricity in our house for about 4 days after the Amphan thunderstorm. It was a very difficult time in our lives. That was when some divine force inspired me to pick the book 'Autobiography of a Yogi' from my bookshelf. 

It won't be an exaggeration if I say that it is the best book I have ever read in my life. It changed me as a person and empowered me with its plethora of spiritual teachings. I know that I will go back to this book again and again throughout my life. 

Other life-changing books that I read in 2020 for which I am grateful for, are Tuesdays with Morrie, Hygge, Archer by Paulo Coelho, Vitamin H series by Abhishek Thakkar, Follow Your Rainbow by Rashmi Bansal, Adiyogi by Sadhguru. 

3. Baking

I learned baking this year! I always wanted to bake cakes but due to my hectic schedule, I always ordered from a confectionery shop. Things were different this year due to the lockdown. 

I was not ready to spend my birthday without a birthday cake. So I decided to try baking. On my birthday, I baked a chocolate cake and decorated it with wafers, gems, and nutties. It was so delicious that I fell in love with the art of baking. I made mango cake, coffee cake, and many more chocolate cakes throughout the year. 

I am so grateful that this year made me fall in love with baking. The aroma of a freshly baked cake is magical!

4. Family Time and Staying in Touch with loved ones

Another thing that I am grateful for in 2020 is the amazing bonding time that Papa and I got. Papa and I have always been busy with our work commitments. But 2020 gave us ample time to be each other's best friends. 

We cooked together, tried various recipes, baked, divided household chores, watched web series, listened to audio stories together, celebrated festivals and special occasions. 

I am also grateful that I could stay in touch with my loved ones through video calls and audio calls. Although I couldn't meet them, but we could be with each other in the highs and lows of this turbulent year. 

5. A great year for writing

2020 has been a very fulfilling year for my writing journey. I was busy with clearing UGC NET and with other content developing projects in 2019 which halted my writing. I am so grateful that I could focus on my writing project "Mythological Monologues" when the lockdown started. 

The A to Z challenge helped me complete my 6th book "Mythological Monologues" and publish it later in both Kindle and Paperback edition

In the month of November, I participated in NaNoWriMo and completed writing my next novel "Falling Like the Stars" (of 50,000 words) in a month. 

I also wrote a thriller short story "Larceny of Identity" for the book "Macabre Tales" of which I am a guest author. I won the Romantic Rendezvous contest of Writers Melon in which my romantic short story "One day, it will rain" got the first prize and was selected for their upcoming anthology. My audio story "Rose, the Painter's Beloved" (a paranormal story) was selected in the audiobook "Unearthly Lores". You can listen to the story here

Overall, it was a fulfilling year for writing where I worked on my poetry book, novel, and short stories of 3 genres - romance, thriller, and horror. 

6. Learning Literature with Purba

Students were unable to attend classes in this pandemic. I feel so grateful that I could teach English Literature to college students and NET aspirants through my YouTube Channel and Podcast of Learning Literature with Purba. 

My sole focus was to create enriching videos of English Literature that could help plenty of students and make bite-sized podcast episodes that will make Literature a lot of fun. Today, my channel has more than 13.6K subscribers and my podcast is being listened by people of more than 18 countries. 

7. Happiness lies within

I learned this year that my happiness lies within me, not on something outside me. I am the Creator of my Destiny. I create my thoughts, feelings, words, and deeds which contribute to my happiness. 

This year, after the lockdown, I could not meet any of my friends. The first time I went out of my house was in November after more than 8 months of staying at the house. I hardly ordered food from restaurants and went on outings. Despite that, I was happy, stable, and peaceful. 

All I had to do was think and create positive thoughts consciously, take care of my mental and physical health, and wake up with the intention of being good and kind to everyone who comes across me. When we are calm, we can find joy in every situation. This year empowered me and helped me connect with my inner paradise. 

Well, these are a few things that I am extremely grateful for, in 2020. This year brought me closer to myself, made me calmer, wiser, and more compassionate. 

The fact that we have reached the end of 2020 proves that we have survived the most challenging year with flying colours. I am sure all of us have learned something from this year that we will carry forward in 2021. 

May we be compassionate towards everyone - ourselves, fellow humans, animals, and Mother Nature. Wishing everyone a wonderful 2021! 

"When humans learn to bloom together
At their own pace and style
Like the rose, lily, and the sunflower~
No competition
No insecurities
No fear
No envy;
The Earth will turn into an
Evergreen garden of paradise." 

 ‘This blog post is a part of the Welcome 2021 Blog Hop hosted by Swarnali Nath.’