Finding the Silver Lining During COVID-19

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I believe in finding the silver lining.  Just reflecting on the last several weeks, here are some things I am seeing…

People are showing more concern for those they have never met.  Let’s keep it that way.

We are choosing to utilize video to chat with others instead of using the phone.  Let’s keep it that way.

So many are inviting others into their homes from other cities, states, and countries for dinner, religious events, and more by utilizing video platforms.  Let’s keep it that way.

Many are finding new and creative ways to stay healthy and sane when we may not have traditional methods at our fingertips.  Let’s keep it that way.

There are many who are finding incredible ways to commemorate milestones, birthdays, life cycle events, and more that honor the individual while enabling others across the world to be part of the experience when they can’t travel.  Let’s keep it that way (while certainly hoping that we can, once again, gather in-person for many of these events).

We are calling out people for selfish behavior that endangers others.  Let’s keep it that way (but in a civilized manner).

Elected officials are recognizing everyday heroes for their work protecting others.  Let’s keep it that way.

Some are embracing a new “look” when they have limited choices.  Let’s keep it that way (although I do need a haircut eventually).

Even in difficult economic times, people are choosing to donate even more funds to organizations doing critical work.  Let’s keep it that way.

We are increasingly recognizing the role that small businesses play in our communities and actively trying to support them.  Let’s keep it that way.

People are getting more creative with the ways they learn, teach, and absorb information.  Let’s keep it that way.

More people are respecting the personal space of others.  Let’s keep it that way (although I do welcome hugs when it is safe to do so).

We are checking in on our loved ones more frequently.  Let’s keep it that way.

Believe me, I fully recognize that there are many hurting, suffering, and experiencing unimaginable loss at this time, and my heart goes out to each and every one of them.  I write this because it is so easy to dwell on all that is wrong, and I have found myself doing that, too.   A little more focus on the positive of what we may be experiencing can go a long way for me, you, and those around us.

LAURENCE BOLOTIN is the Evelyn R. Greene Executive Director for the American Jewish Committee’s Chicago Regional Office.  In this role, Laurence is responsible for implementing the global Jewish advocacy organization’s international and domestic priorities in the Chicago region.  He oversees all areas of AJC Chicago operations including: global diplomacy, legislative advocacy, inter-group and inter-faith relations, fundraising, and strategic communications.  Laurence partners with the local regional board and global AJC staff to build a safer, more secure future for the Jewish people, Israel, and all humanity.  Prior to this role, Laurence served as the Chief Executive Officer for Zeta Beta Tau International Fraternity Headquarters as well as other roles in higher education.  In his volunteer time Laurence serves as programming chair for the JPRO Chicago network, is a Schusterman Senior Fellow, and served as the 96th National President for the United States Junior Chamber.  He lives in Chicago with his wife and daughter.