The “Accomplishments” of 2020

Did anything actually get done this year?

Anna Burgess Yang
3 min readDec 30, 2020


Pop art image of sparklers
Image created via Midjourney

Though it has been a while, I remember the days of having a newborn. Every minute of every day is spent doing something. Yet, at the end of the day, it felt like nothing got done. At the same time, if the baby was fed and slept, it was an accomplishment.

2020 has felt the same way. A lot of moving through the daily grind and feeling like nothing got done… a feeling I would have rather left behind when my babies got older.

I always do some kind of reflection on the year, so I’m trying very hard to think of what actually got done in 2020.

  1. I took up watercolor painting… and then didn’t have time anymore when we went into lockdown in March. I was making good progress and learning some skills, so I need to figure out how to incorporate this into my day again.
  2. I managed my anxiety through ancestry research. What started as trying to verify a comment that one of my grandmother’s aunts was a member of Daughters of the American Revolution turned into a massive family tree-building effort. I knew very little about my family’s roots before starting the project, so this was a good distraction during the early days of Covid lockdown.
  3. My kids managed to maintain good grades. Remote learning is hard. Kids are not designed to sit and stare at a computer screen for hours at a time. It has been a constant struggle of “good enough” and feeling like I should be supporting them more. Yet, when first quarter grades were released, I breathed a sigh of relief. I don’t really care if they learn anything — but if they were meeting the basic expectations of their teachers, I called that a win.
  4. I became a permanent member of the #5amwritersclub. Most days, I wake up even earlier. I drink my coffee, journal, and can do other writing in peace. No one else in the house usually stirs until closer to 7:00 a.m. It is glorious.
  5. We have stayed safe and healthy. We are in the camp of people that do not gather with anyone outside of our household without masks or outdoors/distance. We only go into stores if absolutely necessary and have as much delivered as possible. It’s hard. We miss people. But luckily, as a family we mostly get along and don’t drive each other…



Anna Burgess Yang

Productivity geek + solopreneur with niche expertise. #5amwritersclub frequent flyer. •