2021 was supposed to be the year when we got over our disease plagued ex 2020. Lo, behold…things have changed a lot but still are the same. An uncanny contradiction. COVID is still evolving with its greek names. Nevertheless, we remain positive and take it all in stride. Hopefully, the lessons from last year were helpful.

Tough times make us stronger, therefore congratulations to you for making it here. We have lost a lot…loved ones, jobs, normal lives, time…but we still are standing strong.

Welcome to our collection of lessons that we have curated from amazing people on their lessons from the year. They are raw, insightful, and full of wisdom.

Quotes are the cheat codes in life that enable us to learn from the experiences of others. Let’s do this!

Stay curious, stay hungry and enjoy doing good!


This year nimelearn about the importance of your environment in the fulfillment of your goals. It cannot be understated how far your actual location and who surrounds it will impact your state of mind, your drive and your happiness. Be in an environment that brings you peace and contentment. Create it to suit you, whatever the effort that’s required. Have boundaries that you are not afraid to speak of (or are afraid but speak of them regardless).


I picked up a lot, some I considered garbage, but then, no experience is wasted experience. I’ve experienced loss, so I know what it is to say Thank you and to mean it. I have experienced love, so I know very well how to give love back. Above all, I have known kindness and patience, and for that I can very well do good. I am not special, but I can make others feel special. Life is a gift. I am grateful to be typing this. I do look forward to 2022. It will be challenging, but I’ve spent the last 22 years preparing for it. So help me God!

Karwitha Mutwiri

Everything is according to God’s plan.

‘ Mungu akisign unajua huwezi pinga’- Femi one ??


My lesson for 2021 is about being present, you can learn from past mistakes but don’t dwell on it, seek the future but create it in the moment. Also, amidst the ups and downs, good things to happen to each and everyone of us, and when they do, it’s prudent to recognize ad celebrate them, either with our loved ones, partners or colleagues. In the celebrations, something new is birthed, could be from the love shown, intentions presented or just the recognition itself. Intuitively it changes us in a good way, so we be open to change. Good things do* happen to each and….utajuaje mi ni mluhya?


Bro no one cares about your life if it’s not your mom or dad…it’s either you make that effort to get what you want or you lack!

For greater individual investments…you must take that risk. Its very important.

Do what makes you happy. Avoid even those friends who may be interfering with your progress.

Being positive.. No matter the situation.. It is a good vibe to keep optimism.

Trying to stabilize on the expenditures, this is not the time to spent more than you’re investing.

Associate with intellectuals, listen more from them and create that network.
Just but to mention these few bro, I’ve literally learnt a lot this year mehn

Antony Musyimi

Family is everything.

When you hit rock bottom, the only way left to go is up.


Emmh I have learnt the power of my thoughts and words. I can choose to mop over my not so pleasant circumstances or create my new reality until it manifests with just my words and of course my thoughts. Indeed nothing is permanent.
I have also learnt to walk through this life light . I should be quick to forgive and let go there is a lot of peace and liberty in just making that choice! Also sometimes I don’t need to know I constantly put on my blinders and run my race. Above all God unconditionally, faithfully and deeply cares and loves me .


Survival is for the fittest! You got to be adaptive for fresh norms- otherwise you ‘perish’

You can never be prepared for everything no matter the levels of energy/time/resources you invest



Appreciate the little things.


At the beginning of 2021, I set my intention to be very intentional and I think it taught me if you set your will & mind towards doing something, you’ll get it done.

The principle of intentionality has guided me in everything I was doing; fun, reading, etc. Deciding in your mind is a very important step.

It is very important to say yes to things which was inspired by a Shonda Rhimes book gifted to me.

Don’t stall, if you want something go for it, relentlessly and without guilt. Even though you don’t get it, you will know you tried.

This year has taught me to unlearn somethings. For instance, when talking to someone, it helps to be deliberate on what you are talking about rather than just talking. Also listening to the other person and
being present.
I have unlearnt about friendships as well. You have to out in the work. For example, planning on catching up & checking in on them.

2021 has taught to me to survive despite the adversities and coming out strong at the end of it. Hardships teach us survival especially for me as a woman.
We say when life gives you lemons make lemonade…but what you doing with the lemonade…are you gonna sell it, plant more lemons to get more lemonade. Basically, learning to survive so that when the next challenge finds you ready.
Even if you’re not going through hardship, you need to create artificial survival skills by putting yourself in challenging situations.

I have learnt to embrace solitude and being on my own. Creating spaces and time to just be with myself. Sometimes, people get lonely because they have gotten used to other people filling these spaces for them. This helps to better know yourself.

Time is an element of your imagination. We don’t create time, we steal it. It is never enough. We will always be busy.
It’s about finding time for the things and people who matter and make you feel alive.

Kemei – Conversation with B

My key lesson for 2021 was developing an attitude of Gratitude. I have learnt to appreciate the things I have while chasing what I desire. When I am doing a task, I celebrate the small wins along the way. Every little thing is sth to be grateful for.


My biggest takeaway this year has been intentionality
In choosing who and what you want to engage in, what extent you are willing to commit yourself and what point will you say you’ve done it .
I’ve learnt to be intentional with my friendships learning and goals.
Looking forward to 2022 i have a feeling it will be great.


Uncertainty doesn’t mean don’t do it. Do your part and trust that you have given your best. It’s all you can give!


Grab a coffee with someone much older than you, there’s wisdom to gain. Get to know someone who doesn’t come from your social class, there’s perspective to gain. Spark a conversation with someone you’re slightly curious to talk to, there’s an experience to gain. This is how you see the world. This is how you grow.


My main lesson from 2021 is a quote from Oprah Winfrey.

It’s about the dreams we had when younger and then abandoned them after we got a taste of the real life. It says: The key to realising a dream is to focus not on success but significance, and then even the small steps and little victories along your path will take on greater meaning. ~ Oprah Winfrey ~


You must not make up your mind merely to overcome a thousand obstacles, but to win in spite of a thousand repulses and defeats.

~ Theodore Roosevelt ~


I learned the need of trying things out and challenging myself. There is always a fear holding one back from taking a shot on things they love. In 2021, I decided to constantly challenge myself in doing things I love but have been sitting back in fear of the outcome. I am glad I did because the results man, are incredible.
So this is what I’ll say if you want to go for something, go for it. If you want to start something, don’t even hesitate. By the way, you never know whom God will put on your way to support you. You start something and things just happen in favor of it, more than you could have imagined.
It’s not your task to run into the future in anticipation of negative outcomes over things you undertake. It is very little you can tell about the future. The best thing is to start, if mistakes happen, correct them along the way. It’s this same spirit I’m carrying with me in the new year 2022.


Life has cycles. When you feel low, embrace it as it won’t last forever. When you have your high, embrace it fully as it won’t last forever. Live your life fully


I learnt to be patient and take my time in analysing any situation before taking action


Hello there! My key lesson for the year is:

Live in the moment.

Whatever is destined shall be. Plans are as necessary as they should be adjustable to circumstances.

Lower your expectations and never limit yourself. Cause, who knows!

Phanastone Yongo

2021 has been a raw year, so uncomfortable, so scary. Mostly sad
But I wouldn’t have made it without my friends. I learned to slow down and be with myself. I’ve learned that the vast majority of my life depends on everyday wins and not huge milestone achievements. This year has taught me that I deserve more than a starved love; the kind where you feed off me because you can’t fill yourself. I deserve rich love, extra love, and love that is adequate. I met the best people in my life towards the end. My life hasn’t been the same. 2021 has shown me that happiness is a choice and one should go for what they want regardless.

Life is short.

Do you!

Be you…but above all, life is a blessing.

Anyonymous Cat

Try and submit to the flow of the universe. Bad things can be good things in disguise.


My key takeaways:

1. It is important to take time to celebrate your wins, both small and big, because we need all the motivation to keep going.

2. It is important to tell the people you love that you love them because tomorrow is never assured.

Senior Chief Yegon

So my takeaways from 2021 were ;

1. I learnt to stop holding on to things and regretting over things that have passed and I have no control over. We make mistakes, we learn, we move on.

2. To always be grateful.


I learned you should embrace change


You dont have to justify or explain your little simple joys to anyone. You like skipping while walking or stepping on a crunchy leaf?….

Do it! Create your experiences because some people will always be momentarily bothered. That is not your problem, it’s theirs to deal with?


2021 lessons were many but my fave:
Just because the world, the economy, etc is going to sh*t doesn’t mean you should shrink your dreams to fit the seemingly dull situation. Have grand dreams and work toward them regardless of what is going on around you. They are valid?


Don’t be so quick to judge, people really change …


Love yourself enough to run away from toxicity.

Be bold enough to say no and protect your mental health.

Speak less listen more.

Think through before sharing any information.


Asking myself, “What’s the worst that can happen?” is anxiety- freeing. Such questions sometimes make me realise it’s not as bad I think and if it is, then I am capable of dealing with the situation that may arise.



We are the masters of our destiny. Where we go and how we wind up there is greatly determined by who we are and what we’re willing to stand for. This can be achieved by spending a lot of time with yourself to ensure that you can tell when you stray from your purpose and scold yourself and a pat on your back when necessary.

Wothaya – Nasipangwingwi

Be kind to people

Trust your instincts always

Be patient with yourself

Don’t waste any opportunity that knocks at your door

Lower your expectations on people

Know your boundaries

Stop lending some friends money??


2021 is the year i experienced alot of pain, loss and suffering but at the same time gained a whole lot.

I got to know and find myself even more….so its been a year of learning and being taught.

I learnt that nobody cares about your life except you and minding your own business goes a long way.


I’d say how we don’t have control over so many things…no matter how powerful you are as a human there’s still so much outside your influence.


One major thing I’ve learned in 2021 is being flexible and open minded about things. Don’t put yourself in a box, because of the fear of the unknown.

Take risks as much as you can if you want different results.

Nobody will kill you for trying, don’t disqualify yourself where you’ve not been disqualified yet.

Two, I’ve learnt it’s important to have a voice of your own, personally this year I had a big decision to make over something but I felt I didn’t have a voice of my own, and I was forced to go with what the higher authority thought was best for me.

And I ended up losing a big opportunity. So, I’ve learnt you actually need to stand up for what you believe, provided you feel it’s right.

Sometimes it will call for us to make big decisions without consulting some people. That’s part of growing up too, being able to be independent-minded.


Okay so what did I learn in 2021?

That I can still get things done and that really raised my self confidence to the roof, I learned to stand up for myself which resulted to tremendous strides in the positive direction as opposed to what I thought would be interpreted as arrogant. I also learnt that I should put myself out there and go out of my comfort zone.

Also I improve my social skills by taking any opportunity to make small talk with strangers.


My 2021 was not so good.

However, I learnt alot and did quite alot of self improvement so I mean I can’t label it as pathetic

Key lessons

1.Don’t take everything to heart

2.Better days will come (they might also never come?)

3.Plan for inconveniences

4.Work on yourself (you are all you’ve got)

5.Friends are the shit??

6.Everything everybody knows, they learnt (a quote, paraphrased),so learn all you can


The sun rising every morning reminded me that there is always room for a fresh start


2021 has been all over the place for me but my major take aways in no particular order:

1. Those things I have zero control over, I’ll not be found dwelling on them.

2.Guchu randomly said something profound in my hearing, that “if you’ve decided to love ,love the Jesus kind of love…not expecting anything in return. Otherwise you’ll not enjoy love”

3.Give thanks in all things. Usually we remember to ask God for help in hard times and whatever,but forget to give thanks when He answers us, whether the answers are what we wanted or not.

4. Treat people with kindness whether or not you know what episodes they’re in in life.

5. Make time for things and people that are important. Life’s unbearably short.

Tichi (Soya brand ambassador for life)

Being mad at people for not coming through for you is unfair… Especially because you didn’t consider what they themselves were going through.

Na pia nililearn watu hupiga tu kelele sosho media wakimislead wengine. Na kwa ground tunateseka wote???


Always show up for yourself.

This?? speaks to me. Like even when I am down, I need to pick me up and do something for me even if it’s small and at the end of the day I’ll have made a stride towards better times.


Stop saying you will do it, just get up and do it.
The secret to accomplishing any goal is consistency


2021 was a great year full of ups and downs.  The pandemic greatly impacted my life. Having to adjust to the new normal, online classes, a better part of the day with family etc. It was also a learning year for me, balancing leadership, academics and other aspects of life. A year of growth and self reflection.

The greatest lesson for me was the importance of adapting to change.  That only those who end up adapting to change survive eventually.

I also learnt to treasure every moment with family and friends. It is when you are away from friends and family that you realise how much value and brightness they add to your life.


1.I learnt, from 2021, to be SELFISH with my time and energy. As women, we are sometimes taught to be small and humble. However, it’s okay to put yourself first.

2. Never be afraid to dream big , plan and work towards these dreams. Shoot your shots (career, relationships etc) because it’s totally worth it. When scared to take the first step, step off the edge and do it while accepting that failure sometimes happens despite doing everything perfectly.

3. Life is too precious and too short to hold feelings back. Therefore,tell them you love them and leave nothing unsaid. Express yourself as loudly and as proudly as as you can.

4. Isolation and loneliness are an expression of self love. I’m alone! I get to do what I love and try things I want to. I get an opportunity to get comfortable in my own company,recharge, and get back my creativity.


Thank you to the lovely people who were the co-authors of this lessons collection.

May 2022 be kind to us!

It is a space where we will learn, explore and challenge our minds.

4 comments on “DEATH TO 2021: OUR LESSONS & TAKEAWAYS

  • Matende Matende Okwemba

    Great lessons there…I learnt that no matter what family will always stick with us and patience pays… it’s a year I lost a friend due to depression that ended up to suicide mission and I almost lost another one and i realized that time that we are all in a different journey, our paths getting different light at different buttons.If only we are patient with ourselves and leave too much comparison,make peace with ourselves,care for one another then we can actually grow.
    Happy new year and let’s care for one another.

    • Kagûre

      Wow! Thanks, Jerusa. This is so deep and authentic. Condolences for your loss. May 2022 be full of happiness for you!

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