As the days start to trickle into weeks and the awareness of the Coronavirus grows larger and larger it can become easy to lose hope and succumb to the fear.
Fear is a basic response to the need to survive as a species. It is what warned our ancestors when danger was coming and they needed to run, hide and protect themselves. It was a time of self preservation to gather what you could for yourself and your family to help bring you through the crisis.
Thankfully we have learned a lot from our ancestors and their resourcefulness. We understand the need to change our routines and the need to adapt to the world around us. We learned that as difficult as the challenges they faced were at the time, that it did eventually pass by and a new future was embraced.
Awareness of past viruses greatly aided in medical research, and over time resulted in the creation of vaccines and a world movement to educate and provide opportunities for billions to receive care. Countries came together to distribute, fundraise and provide aid to other countries that needed assistance. It strengthened a sense of community around the world as we moved from individual preservation to community and then global.
In this day and age of technology we have the world at a click of the button. An opportunity to share, reach out, gather, unite and ask for help and assistance. There is no longer a need to hide yourself away, stockpiling what you can in excess of what has been recommended by your government leaders for emergency preparedness.
I have watched with pride in my heart as communities are standing together in solidarity as they hold vigils for front line workers, donate desperately needed medical supplies, donate food, and send messages of encouragement, gratitude and blessings.
I watch as businesses adjusting to reduced hours, and new business practices are focusing on employee and consumer safety instead of profit, donating their time and resources to help in any way they can. Employees and consumers alike are looking each other in the eye, and truly seeing the other person, acknowledging and asking, “how are you?”
I’ve witnessed workers who are now laid off share valuable information with others as to the resources available through their provincial government, and other resources they have found to help ease the financial and emotional stress. They are stepping up to adapt to the temporary setback knowing that it’s out of their hands and focusing instead on being of service, and looking for solutions.
I’m witnessing parents truly teach their children what it means to get through a crisis by taking the time to explain at their level of understanding why they can’t go out and play with their friends, go to daycare, school or the playground. I’ve heard so many beautiful stories of parents explaining to their children that this is temporary and important for the health and well-being of all. These parents are sharing compassion, understanding, and helping their children move beyond seeing themselves as individuals and instead seeing themselves as one with the world. Our children are like sponges watching and absorbing how the adults in their lives are responding, creating a beautiful opportunity for parents to reinforce strong values.
I’ve watch children display amazing acts of kindness through their artwork and messages displayed in windows within their homes, hanging on fences, and posted on social media. Making heartfelt crafts, thank you cards and other objects to express their gratitude. And even though these items can’t be physically sent to the intended recipient, they have experienced the joy in creating and can hold on to those feelings of gratitude every time they see their creation.
I’ve stood in awe as teachers, caregivers and so many others diligently work to provide the highest levels of education and persevere through learning new technology, as they are unwilling to give up, and remain focused on solution based thinking.
Countless others are reaching out to friends and neighbours, checking in and coming up with innovative ways to communicate and let others know if help is needed.
There are so many rays of hope beaming around all of us as we focus on what the community, the local government and the world is doing to support each other. These few items noted above came pouring forth in a matter of minutes by looking through the local paper, checking my social media feeds, and chatting with friends. Each one of these ideas was inspired through individuals and teams coming together, and as each new inspiration and ray of hope was shared, others were drawn into the light and inspired to assist or create additional ways to lend a hand.
We all have the ability to be a leader and choose hope over fear – solutions over problems.
Be that ray of hope, shine it bright and shine it far!
Lots of love,