21 Things to learn from 2021

Sumeet Inamdar
9 min readJan 18, 2023

A look back at 2021 while chilling in 2023

Photo by Kanchanara on Unsplash

I recently posted an article — 20 things to learn from 2020 that are still relatable in 2023.

If you haven’t read it yet, I’d encourage you to read that first so that you can enjoy this article a little more. Because in this article, we will use a few of the same headlines but a little different take on them.

Today, having lived in 2021, and 2022 when we’re trying to give a new start to another year 2023 it makes so much sense to review some of the old mistakes that we made, and learn from them.

Hope you find some of this stuff still relatable.

1. Are you a Bitcoin millionaire yet?

Alright! So we have to start the article by addressing the biggest elephant of 2021 — Bitcoin. There were many people in the world at the end of 2021 asking — What just happened? The bitcoin rally which started somewhere around mid-2020 went all the way to $69000 by mid-December and dropped back down to $40,000. Following bitcoin, several other coins also exploded in 2021. There were many teenagers who became millionnaire by investing in cryptocurrency in 2021. But wait. Was that over yet? Cuz every other YouTuber and influencer was still talking about bitcoin having a ‘lot more upward potential.’

While no one could tell with certainty what more potential crypto held at the end of 2021, and what to expect in 2022, it is always better to not be greedy and not trust anyone trying to tell the future.

We have to remember that governments cannot lose. Even though it might sound like one or the other crypto could be the world currency at any moment now, it’s hard and will still take a long long time. Do not trust anyone when it comes to your money.

#not_a_financial_advice

2. Always have your safe cash ready for you

Here’s how it happened in 2021 —

  • Step 1: Any crypto coin (especially Bitcoin or Ethereum) would brake its previous high due to some reason (not known with certainty to nobody)
  • Step 2: All the YouTubers and influencers would start talking about this event as if it never happened before which would create a huge hype around that specific crypto and the other crypto coins related to that coin
  • Step 3: More people would invest money (Or the people would invest more money) in the crypto market hoping to make a fortune
  • Step 4: Which would make the crypto market set a new high
  • Step 5: Influencers would create — I told you so — videos increasing their subscribers and again the hype around the crypto coin
  • Repeat back to step 1

I agree that influencers were not the only factor contributing to the exploding crypto and stock market but I think it was one of the major factors.

We cannot ever ignore the fact that even though many people have made fortunes in the crypto market, many have lost it too. In the end, no one knows where this market would go, so it’s always better to have some money saved for you to survive just in case you lost everything you ever invested.

#not_a_financial_advice

3. Do not blindly trust that guy (Or anyone)

Firstly, do not trust anyone when it comes to your money.

Secondly, while there are several people out there who made a lot of money because of one stock and would want to worship the CEO of that company every morning, there are also some people who lost money because of that stock.

Photo by Crystal Mapes on Unsplash

Remember, any CEO of any company is first a businessman, not an influencer or social worker. So, no matter what he says in front of the media, for him, the most important task is to make money for his company to survive and for himself. So, if some CEO on a random Tuesday puts the name of some crypto on his social media platforms, or advocates some shitcoin for fun, doesn’t mean he will go all-in on it. He’s just having fun. The amount of money he would probably put into it would be nothing compared to the money and assets he owns.

So do not blindly follow that guy. You know what I’m talking about, yeah?

4. The stock market crashes, especially after it goes exponential

When the world started to work remotely in 2020, any company that could operate its business remotely and bring its products or services to its customers in their homes, made huge profits in their earnings. As a result of that, their stocks started to go up. In 2021, remote work continued leading to more profits for the tech industry, and so exploded their stocks.

Yes, there are several other factors that played an important role in boosting the stock market. And by the end of 2021, many stocks had broken their all-time highs and some even underwent a split.

And yet, no one could tell what would happen in 2022. What we must remember is —

What goes up, must come down.

#not_a_financial_advice

5. The future of commercial real estate is in jeopardy

At the end of 2020, it was clear that commercial real estate will no longer be a trustworthy investment (what I discussed on this at the end of 2020)

In 2021, several large-scale companies realized that working remotely comes with many advantages such as —

  • Increased productivity of people
  • Increased happiness of people due to getting more time with families
  • Huge decrease in the costs spent on the rent, maintenance, and utilities of commercial real estate that companies previously had due to working on-site
  • Increased profits

Several companies switched to working remotely full-time. And that put the future of commercial real estate in jeopardy.

6. The government printed more money in 2021; God bless us in 2022

In 2020, when COVID hit the world, and then-government in the US printed money to assist people while their incomes were lost. At the end of 2020, as a result of the presidential election, a new government was formed in the US. In 2021, they printed more money to assist people which flooded the economy even more. By the end of 2021, there were approximately 5 trillion dollars in new cash in the economy.

In general, the rule is that the value of the products in the economy needs to move in parallel with the total money in the economy. Printing more money can lose the value of the products or in other words, it will increase their cost. The effect is also known as inflation.

7. Technology changed the world. Again.

In 2020, technology helped companies for transitioning their businesses from offices to people’s homes. In 2021, technology made it possible for every single person to buy and sell stocks and/or crypto easily from their phones. It also introduced a new asset to the world — NFTs. The world of art and collectibles saw a huge increase in sales due to this new asset that technology made possible. With every year, technological enhancements are surprising the world.

8. Support local businesses — while you can

I had mentioned earlier that it’s up to us to support local businesses since we’re all they’ve got.

Well, in 2020 and 2021 many people tried their best to support local businesses in the best possible way they could. While we cannot ignore the fact that some local businesses had to close their doors in these two years, many are still struggling to survive. Especially, the ones that are not related to the food or beverage business. People ordered food/drinks from local stores to help them survive but what about artists and art galleries?

These people are still struggling to survive. Let’s help them while we can.

9. Some small businesses leveraged technology to reach new highs

In 2020 small businesses learned the trick of technology. But in 2021, when the world continued working from home, small businesses used their social media following (that they gained in 2020) for growing their business to the next level. Some businesses started providing out-of-state shipping at a higher cost while some started creating content and selling merch online. This type of technological advantage and tools brought these businesses to a wider market where the competition was tougher than their local stores. And those who couldn’t take advantage of the technology or couldn’t keep up with the competition had no choice but to close their doors forever.

10. Come work for us — We offer remote work options

Working from home was more of a need in 2020 but in 2021, several companies had switched to working remotely or hybrid forever. Now the time had come when many were advertising remote work as an additional benefit with the new jobs that they were positing on the market. The need from 2020 had become a choice or benefit in 2021. It opened up the doors to many more opportunities.

11. Single-screen work culture changed the way we work forever

In 2021, after the vaccines had reached enough people, some parts of the world started opening up. People realized that ‘work from home’ doesn’t have to be working from ‘home’ only. It could also be a — work from anywhere. All you need is internet connectivity. And so, many chose to travel with their work laptops and worked from sever destinations. Some even did road trips around the country while being productive. The single-screen work culture had evolved to a new level.

12. We just love to complain — in any situation

In 2020, people were complaining about not having to do things in lockdown. Some were even going crazy. In 2021, when there were no lockdowns, some people complained about wearing masks. Some complained about having to go back to work and some about something else. The pandemic taught us that no matter what situation we’re in, we always manage to find something to complain about.

13. Travel is important

In 2021, when the lockdowns were lifted and people could travel with one laptop and work from anywhere, people realized the importance of travel in their life. Social interaction can make people feel happy but if you add traveling on top, it becomes much more fun.

14. We don’t need as much toilet paper as we think

Well, I think you know how some people went crazy about toilet paper at the beginning of the lockdown. They are still wiping their asses with the rolls that they bought back in 2020. Let’s hope that now they’re figuring out how much shit they can actually take.

15. Welcome, COVID babies!

When people are bored, they have sex! 2021 welcomed a lot of babies into the world. Hope they all are healthy and safe. 😊 If the lockdown happens again, your parents can plan for a brother for you.

Just so you know, the rate of babies born in the United States in 2021 was 1663.5 babies per 1000 women.

16. Long-distance relationships survived

2021 gave a sweet surprise to many of the departed couples. Lockdowns came to an end in several countries and people could meet and hug each other again.

In some places like India, things still didn’t work so well in 2021. Couples still had to survive on phones.

Love is not complicated, pandemics are.

17. Marriages can happen with under 50 people in the presence

This was a strange fact that many Indians came to know in 2020. The restrictions continued in 2021. Now, some people had started looking at it as an economical option. Fewer guests, fewer arrangements, so fewer investments for it. Some people still didn’t understand the concept of COVID and did invite a couple of hundred people to their weddings in 2021. Hope everyone survived to see 2022.

18. At least now, we need to start taking pandemics seriously

COVID-19 was not the first.

Millions died. We all lost our loved ones. We don’t need another wake-up call to understand that we need to take pandemics seriously, do we?

19. Let’s be grateful that we’re alive, shall we?

2020 taught us to be grateful. 2021 reminded us again about it. Let’s just all be grateful that we faced something impossible together and made it alive. The pandemic taught us to be grateful for every single day that we get in our lives.

20. No one can predict the future

The way 2020 and 2021 turned out for the world proved that no one can predict the future. If any fortune teller, psychic, or anyone ever tries to tell you any future, don’t take them seriously.

All we have is this moment. Let’s be happy about this moment.

21. Expect the unexpected

2021 was quite a roller coaster for everyone. People died. People lost loved ones. People didn’t want to take vaccines. Businesses closed forever. Businesses became content creators. Stocks set new record highs. The crypto market exploded. Slumdogs became millionaires and millionaires became slumdogs. There are many many more things that happened this year and I guess many more will happen the next year as well.

What 2021 taught us is to always expect the unexpected. And be happy in the moment you have.

Hope you enjoyed the article. Thank you for reading! See you tomorrow.

— Sumeet ;)

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Sumeet Inamdar

Battery Engineer|Tech Enthusiast|Here, writing about the stuff I like. In short — I am serving a spoonful of wisdom with a shot of vodka on the side. Cheers!