DJ’s 2021 Lessons Learned

As we turn the page to 2022, it’s a perfect time to reflect on what brought us to the present moment. The past year caused plenty of continued changes; with each change comes an opportunity to learn and grow. For my first blog entry of this year, I want to share a few valuable lessons I learned from the last one.

COVID is infectious, but positivity is even more infectious

The continued COVID pandemic, political infighting, and economic crisis plagued the world with fear and doubt. It rocked many people – including myself, my family, and my business – to the core. I’ve experienced too many people who’ve lost family, friends, businesses, and their lives over it. In my view, COVID – while indeed a disease – was just a symptom of a more significant issue plaguing the world: fear and doubt. 2021 taught me that maintaining a positive mindset, intention, and action is fucking hard when we’re in a crisis, but I’m confident it’s the only way to break through. Negativity breeds contempt and failure. Contempt and failure breed resentment and death. Bitterness and death don’t do anybody any good. Staying proactive and positive during a crisis requires hard work, discipline, and intense concentration of mind. It might feel like worrying, complaining, or walking away takes less energy, especially if you’re stressed out. But the only way to conquer the disease of fear and doubt is to develop and maintain a positive outlook. Thinking, planning and training for positivity is the only way to rise above.

You absorb what you pay attention to

In the past year, more content producers and creatives have been born and developed online than at any other time in human history. An incredible amount of new content will be produced and available online in 2022. Many people are hard at work recording videos & podcasts and writing blogs & e-books. It makes perfect sense – what better time to create new ideas & content than when we are bored out of our minds and locked down? As we hunkered down with ourselves, spouses, partners, and children, we battled boredom with creativity and used the medium of information technology to do IT. With all this “newly found” time and content available, citizens of the world had a unique opportunity to learn new ways of being and hone in on what they wanted out of life, business, and personal relationships. The lockdown unquestionably tested our ability to get through difficult times, but it also revealed an incredible growth opportunity for those willing to take advantage of it.

The key to an effective life is effective communication

Although we still argue over whether LinkedIn, Facebook, Twitter, and other social media platforms are worth our precious time, how to work under the “new normal,” and whether the tech companies are trustworthy, social media added a whopping 409 million new users from January through October 2021, according to

Who will win at the new “tech wars” remains to be seen. Still, there’s no question that individuals and businesses learned new ways to communicate remotely and effectively over platforms like Zoom, Microsoft Teams, and Google Meet. If there’s one thing from a technology perspective we can see, it’s that telecommunications, cloud, and internet technologies aren’t going anywhere anytime soon. 2020-2021 was a practice run for how humanity will connect and communicate in the future.

Work is the price of evolution

The pandemic changed the course of the modern world as we know it. Technology companies and those already used to working remotely had a distinct advantage; they already knew how to adapt. Markets froze and shifted; cryptocurrency became mainstream, CEOs worldwide panicked as the supply chain stalled, and employees walked out in droves amidst the “great resignation.” Many friends and acquaintances decided to get after what they wanted out of life, shared their stories, and started multitudes of new businesses. The entrepreneurial spirit emerged in many. Others decided to leave a stale job that was unfulfilling in a quest to reach higher and loftier goals. I learned that these changes are not as profound as people make them out to be. The world is evolving. I believe it needed to. We’re working differently now – with a new and refreshed mindset and perspective – but it’s still work and that won’t change. What has changed is that the game has now shifted. The most poignant lesson I learned in 2021 is to surround yourself with people and teams who fill your world with essential passion, determination, and joy. It takes work to adopt change, achieve the goals and outcomes you want out of life, climb out of depression, and evolve.

Final thoughts on 2021

Perhaps the world needed a “wake up” call. Whether I wanted it or not, I needed and received mine! The “COVID reboot,” whatever you think about it, happened, and nothing can bring your life, family, and business into focus like coming together in a time of crisis and uncertainty. I will forever be grateful for learning the lessons I have learned this past year. What will you do in ’22? Make IT a great year, everyone!