You know, the glass that is either half empty or half full. Way back in February 2020 (which now seems like a lifetime ago) I had my glass always at a glance, well within reach and definitely half full. It was a trip to Disney World with my daughter for some winter fun. Coming back from that trip, the next month brought more news of COVID and tough decisions to be made. Somehow, although my glass was still within reach, it also began to have a slow leak of evaporation.
I’m typically a positive person, but this has been a rough stretch for all of us. And that glass at times hasn’t even been in sight to know if it is half full or half empty. I moved it so many times I lost track of it. And yet, once I decided to look for it, or more importantly focus on whether I’m being positive or negative, things began to change. My circumstances didn’t change, but my attitude toward my circumstances did.
I began to look for stories of small businesses in Central PA and beyond that re-invented themselves. Businesses that learned lessons of needed areas of growth and now magically had the time to make those changes. Although not directly related to my business and my life, I found great comfort and inspiration in the fact that even the business greats like Mark Cuban and Tony Robbins also had to stop, find their glass, make changes, and look to the future with optimism doing things differently than before.
In the 1990s, Charlotte, North Carolina psychologists Lawrence Calhoun, Ph.D. and Richard Tedeschi, Ph.D. named a concept that has been around for centuries called Post Traumatic Growth. It’s when people go through traumatic events, and it challenges our beliefs and core values. It’s not the absence of challenges or traumatic events, it's what we do during and after those challenges that can be an intense area of growth in relationships, confidence in our strengths and abilities, new priorities, appreciation for life and a deeper understanding of humanity and spirituality.
As we end 2020 and raise a glass (maybe even THE glass), here’s to a half full glass for 2021 - even if all our same circumstances are present - believing with all our hearts that growth can and will come with focus and patience.