There have been a lot of things about the last year that we could probably do with forgetting about, but there have been some lovely, some positive, some heartwarming and even some exciting developments in amongst all the challenges. From the big things to the little moments, here’s a little recap of some of the happy things we want to remember, continue with or develop further as we head towards a new year.
Best things in 2021: around the world
On a big scale, the best things that have happened in 2021 are actually quite broad, and while we can’t cover them all here, these are some of the happiest.
50th anniversary of Walt Disney World
The happiest place in the world is 50 years old and are celebrating with 18 months of events. What could be better after the last couple of years?
Environmental health and COP26
In just seven months, governments and activists from around the world have made tremendous strides to achieve the UN’s Global Goals by 2030 said Global Citizen. For example, 77 countries in the world have now announced full or partial bans on plastic bags and with many countries committing to transform their health systems to be more sustainable and low carbon.
International Year of Peace and Trust
The United Nations declared 2021 as the International Year of Peace and Trust, the International Year of Creative Economy for Sustainable Development, the International Year of Fruits and Vegetables, and the International Year for the Elimination of Child Labour.
China eliminated malaria
After decades of perseverance, on 30th June 2021 the World Health Organization announced that the People’s Republic of China (PR China) had been certified malaria-free, after a field mission in PR China in May 2021 by an independent certification panel.
Best things in 2021: on an individual note
Of course, for all the really big things, it’s the smaller personal lessons that really have an impact on our lives. We’ve all learned a lot of lessons in the last two years, some more appreciated than others, but for now we will focus on the happy ones
Change can be good
So many people have had to adapt and change, and that can be a painful process. However, on an individual and collective note, it has resulted in some amazing things. People have built businesses, thrived and found new ways to persevere. Just wow.
Look for the helpers
Fred Rogers famously said: “When I was a boy and I would see scary things in the news, my mother would say to me, “Look for the helpers. You will always find people who are helping.” Well isn’t that the truth?
We’re more resilient than we think
Look at how much you survived, how far you’ve come. We’re more resilient than we think we are, and science backs the claim. Psychology Today said: “human nature leans toward survival and resiliency; there is no superhuman constant or static state of rising above. Resilience depends on when you’re looking, not on who you’re looking at.”
Community is a wonderful thing
We’ve seen neighbours who have never met do one another’s shopping, we’ve seen people volunteering and we’ve seen doctors and nurses come out of retirement and return to the NHS. Community is awesome.
Health is the most important thing
We’ve all got a greater reverence for our wellbeing than ever before. On every level, mental, physical and emotional, if we can now appreciate our own and collective health more than ever before. Research has found that pandemic has had a significant impact on people’s behaviour and attitudes to self-care. In a study, 70 % of participants said they are more likely to consider their health in day-to-day decision making than they were before.
Quality time with loved ones is a treasure
After all the lockdowns, all the time apart and all the barriers to quality time together, spending time with loved ones is front and centre of our lives once again.