Three months into a global pandemic and I see the good in it. Odd to say, I know. I’ll call it my silver lining. It helps me get through each day and it’s become apparent to me how beautiful the people in our world can be.
Now, I fully understand this will be much tougher times for many of us. My prayers go out to each of you if this time has become more of a struggle in any part of your life. My hope is this brief post will open up some joy in a world of unknown.
Here are four observances I’ve seen in others. I, too, am embracing them. Hope you’ll join me.
To me this is the first thing I noticed. It’s slowed down in wonderful ways. Over the past few decades, the pace of seemingly everything has accelerated beyond what our fellow humans can confine. Everyday demands in work expectations, parenting, social media ubiquity and endless content streaming have led to a ‘keeping up with the Jones’ and ‘FOMO’ mindset. The result has been significant increases in anxiety, stress, depression or worse. We needed a smack in the face – something that would slow us down, have us reexamine our lives and force us to prioritize our purpose. It’s here. Let’s welcome it. In other words… stop and smell the roses.
I’ve seen incredible creativity in organizations adapting to the stay-at-home situation, while keeping productivity and spirits high. My company has moved to video conferencing check-ins where we showcase our favorite coffee mug, wear our most nostalgic t-shirt and simply host ‘how are we doing’ meetings. I’m getting together with friends for virtual happy hours, my daughter and I had lunch together on Facetime, and my wife and I have found we’re grateful for more time together. Even the dogs seem happier with their longer walks! To all those that are caring for us during this time – grocery workers, nurses, police, firefighters, truckers, manufacturers, farmers… and so many more. Thank you, bless you, and wishing you health and wellness.
I find that people are still coming together – staying away, yet coming together. I’ve always believed in ‘people first’. I’ve seen companies thrive, simply because they purposefully elevate people to the forefront of everything, including their decision-making, organizational structure, learning opportunities and even taking into account the family dynamic. Seems logical, but how many examples do we see where we see these things before people… money, expansion, indulgence, stuff. I’ve seen a resurgent on neighborly acts and an employee-driven, heart-led approach.
My daughter discovered board games and invited three friends to join. Board games! She’s 18. Come on! I did not believe it, but there it was right in front of me. She even asked if we had MORE board games. She’s also the one who roller-skated through the kitchen and redecorated her room. When my wife and I picked up our jaws from the floor, we realized how great it is to have her home from school. Also, my wife sent me on a 20-mile round trip for a porch pickup croquet game. Croquet! I didn’t hesitate. Now she’s getting out the hula-hoops. Board games and yard games. I like.
As much of the world shares in the joy of Easter in the coming weeks, I think it relates nicely our circumstance. Easter is a celebration of new life after dark times. Yes, times may seem dark. However, I’m seeing the new life happening now. Are you?
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