WHAT I LEARNED FROM THE COVID-19 PANDEMIC

Growing up in the 80’s the David Letterman Top Ten List was one of the funniest skits on television.  Letterman would come up with the top ten things about the most ridiculous subjects.  For my Wife’s 40th Birthday I did a top ten list of all the Reasons I Love Her, which of course, was the follow up to my Top Ten List of Reasons She Drives Me Crazy.

During this pandemic I have had so much time to think and evaluate so many things, so I decided to write my own Top Ten List of things this pandemic has taught me.  However, I am not Letterman and am not trying to be funny. Rather, I intend to share some points that are important for everyone, and I hope readers choose to take action and own these points.

So here we go, THE TOP TEN THINGS I LEARNED FROM THE COVID-19 PANDEMIC:

10) Parents have to trust their kids to adjust to adverse situations and allow them the space to navigate these adverse situations on their own.  Be there to support them but don’t tell them how to navigate uncharted waters. However, parents should be there to gently push their kids back on track when the opportunity arises.

9) Time with family is precious, and as people age, their loved ones age to. Thus, it is so important to cherish and spend as much quality time with loved ones as possible while they are still around to spend time with.  This applies to more than parents and elderly relatives; this applies to children too.  One day, children will have families of their own, and it is important to expose them to positive family experiences so they can model these experiences when their time comes to start a family.

8) There are more good people in this world than bad.  Besides the amazing people in healthcare and the medical field, many others are making sacrifices to help out during this pandemic.  For instance, local restaurants that were battered by the pandemic are still donating food, people are delivering food to the elderly and poor, and people are delivering food to residential addresses. Musicians and artists are putting on free concerts and helping to raise money for much needed equipment to donate to hard-working healthcare workers.  Thus, it is important to maintain faith in humanity and refrain from allowing the bad people in this world to skew your beliefs about humanity.

7) I have found my true calling and am determined to follow it and never go back to the way things were before this pandemic hit.  Before the pandemic I worked 70-80 hours a week between my coaching practice and my other work in the entertainment and catering industries.  My coaching always took a backseat to my other work, but I will not allow this to happen anymore. This time has allowed me to reassess my life and realize what I am meant to do. I am now determined to work on my terms and not allow anything or anyone to keep me from doing what I want and from being happy while being in service to others.

6) There is literally a ton of new shit out on Netflix and Amazon Prime. I have learned to prioritize focusing on my business instead of caving to the temptations of TV. This will allow me to face the new normal head-on when the world begins to revert to the way it was. 

5) As hard as this has been for me, there are so many others in worse shape and I have learned to be grateful for all. I have learned to recognize that I am in a good place. Most importantly, I am grateful for my health and my amazing family that I am surrounded by.

4) I recognize how lucky I am to still have my mom in my life.  She may drive me crazy, but it would be a sad and lonely world without her big heart and love that she shows me every day.  She lives alone in an apartment complex that is predominately elderly and she has Lymphoma.  Out of fear, she has sequestered herself inside her apartment so she does not get sick. This has not been easy for her and I have gained a new respect and appreciation for her tenacity and her ability to still smile, accept things as they are, and continue to worry about me and my family on a daily basis. Yes, she drives me nuts, but it is out of love and concern, and I hold her in such high regard, even more so than I ever have before.

3) I have developed a new resect for both my adult children and all children who are dealing with the pandemic as best they can.  It is not easy having a 23 -year-old working from home before she heads off to law school and a 19-year-old finishing his first year of college from home. Neither one of them signed up for this and it is truly unfair.  My son was just getting into his groove, both academically and socially, before the pandemic hit and forced him to come home and be away from the environment he was just learning to thrive in.  My daughter was excited to commute to Manhattan and live the city work life for a year before giving up three years of her life to her studies in law school.  Going out after work in Manhattan, seeing shows, hitting some cool bars with friends are all things that were unexpectedly taken away from her, and while they aren’t of high priority in the grand scheme of things, they played a part in her life. They have both persevered and managed to make the best of this unfortunate situation. They both have positive views of the future and are ready to take it on when the world reopens and allows them to face the future.  I could not be prouder and I have so much respect for my children and their ability to adjust and move forward.

2) I have learned what an amazing educator and administrator my wife is.  When she commandeered my office I was a bit annoyed, but clearly she needs it more than me. I can work anywhere, so I chose the dining room table next door to my office.  Every morning while I am doing my work, I hear her on the phone with teachers and parents and doing virtual training with all of the kids in her school, who all happen to have Autism. She has always been involved in this field but I have never actually seen her in action, and now that I have, I recognize how awesome she is. Whatever your spouse or significant other does, take the time to really find out what their day is like and tell them how proud you are of their work

1) I have recognized how this quarantine has allowed me to not only help myself grow and follow my passion, but to help others too. Through my posts and conversations with friends and co-workers, I have learned I have been able to inspire others to work on themselves and follow their passions too. There is no greater joy than being a part of someone else’s joy and happiness.

Cheers to everyone’s health and happiness.