One Man’s Opinion: Publishers Column: Special Edition
By Ryan Sauers
Dear Our Town Gwinnett Magazine Community and Family:
I have written many columns over the years that are positive and encouraging. Each one has been written from the bottom of my heart. We are at a unique place in time. Let us not forget, however, that we live, work, worship, and play in an amazing community. We also live in the greatest country in the world. Americans are strong. Americans are creative, passionate, and are survivors. Americans always find ways to overcome the toughest of times. You see Our Town community… we are these Americans. I think our community is amazing and represents the very best of America.
We know the corona virus and the changes to our lives are unprecedented. I challenge you to find the best in this situation. How can you give back? How can you help someone else? This is way bigger than any one person. It does not help anyone in this community when we post online things that are negative. We must not panic. We will prevail. We will win.
I am nearly done with my doctoral coursework in leadership (studying vast amounts of time on human behavior) int his time. This unique time in our history demands great leadership. Remember, anyone can be a leader not just “people with titles.” Therefore, we must support and encourage each other. We must remember the time we have on this earth (regardless of this virus) is very short. Let us make it our passion to make others smile, laugh, and be a breath of fresh air as we help and serve others.
We must support small businesses during this time. They are the backbone of our country and community. Please find ways to help them. Again, do not panic. There is no need to panic. Human beings, however, can “ramp up” emotions in others when continually talking about social isolation, the stock market, grocery stores etc. Yes, all these things are real, but we will get through it together. One step at a time. One punch at a time. One round at a time. So, take a deep breath.
We have all been saying for years things like we are “slammed, drowning, running ragged, swamped etc.” So, now we have the opposite problem. We have time on our hands. So, the choice is what do we do with this precious gift of time. For me, I began training to run a 5k, working on new business plans I had not had gotten to, talking to old friends, working on my final course work, spending more time with my family, more time for prayer, reading, and watching great shows and movies.
The biggest thing that can help our hearts and minds is to refrain from continual talk that is negative or depressing. Informing other of key news is great. However, “inciting others” to be anxious is not good at all. So, instead, share the things you are doing to make a difference during this time. Let others know the ways you are using this precious gift of “forced down time.” I encourage you to post things that show the positive things happening in your lives due to more time to think and reflect. Simply said, let us control the things we can control. Most things in life are out of our control. For example, we do not decide when we are born or when we die. God is in control. We must be proactive, vigilant, positive, giving, loving, etc.
Please remember that 100 years from now people will be talking about this time in our history. The choice is up to us. How are we going to create the change we want to see? How are we going to teach younger generations what can be learned from this slower paced time? Is it possible we can all look come together and UNITE. Maybe, we can have real dialogue again and put our silly differences aside. Maybe we can put the smart phones down and talk with each other? We are all human beings first. We are all flesh and blood. We are all Americans. We all live in the same community.
So, look yourself in the mirror and determine what you can do to make this time the best it can be. We must flip the script and quit talking about what we don’t like and begin working to build each other up. Remember, we may not have sports to watch but the ultimate game is going on right now. And, we are all on the same team. Together, we can and will make our stamp on history hear in Gwinnett County. Moreover, we can show this leadership so that other Americans do the same. At times like this it is simple. Leaders lead!
So, keep your head up as it will all be okay. No more panic and worry. Let us channel such emotions into helping and encouraging each other. It is true you can’t control some things that are happening; however, you can absolutely choose how you respond to them. This is your choice. Finally, thank you as always for continuing with us on the journey of my town, your town, Our Town.
Ryan T. Sauers
Our Town Gwinnett Magazine