Well… what can I say.
I never thought Atlanta would be shut down… much less the World. But it is.
COVID-19 has pandemically affected our health, our wealth, and our well-being. But we must fight to make sure it does not take our Spirit!
There are many angles to the pandemic. Some I can think of directly is how it is definitely affecting our livelihoods physically, mentally, and yes, financially.
The other angle is simply what we are going to do to survive and thrive… But more importantly, the angle I am observing is the social aspect. For work, many of us are telecommuting. We’ve increased screentime with Facetime, Microsoft Teams, Zoom, and other tools. We’ve seen colleagues with hair undone, the occasional hand towards the screen with bad nail jobs… With rags on some of our heads or undone hair. But in a way, this has made Atlanta more authentic.
You see, Atlanta had moved away from the greatness I had experienced as a first time ATLien attending Morehouse College in the 90’s. When celebrities were approachable… when there was no $50 cut line for VIP… when business deals were more genuine because we were all trying to live and thrive and make it! When life was simpler because we didn’t have to have a pair of dress shoes from Gucci, but we could display our knowledge to make things happen. Sure, in relative terms, the Rich still got Richer. And yes, the poor existed and may have even been worse at the time with low income housing. But those trying to make better of themselves could do it with applied effort. With execution. With love of friends and family…
Today, the rat race has been slowed. Many of us look at those fancy suits in the closet or shoes on the rack and have not even worn them. But it has given us one of the greatest gifts ever. Time & Reflection.
Since the rat race has slowed down, I’ve seen more families in my neighborhood walking. People are (with social distancing), speaking more, having conversations, and networking. Isn’t it crazy how tragedy is the only thing that can bring people together for a cause? Isn’t it wack how it takes someone dying from something to think about what really is important to us? Isn’t it wack that our Mayor is receiving death threats ? Isn’t it terrible that this is the only time some of us have really gone into our fancy phones and called a loved one?!
I saw a Facebook friend post on his timeline that this time is not a time to:
- lose weight
- force yourself to write a book
- work on a business model
- etc etc etc
But a time to just BE and feel the moment.
He was right… partially.
BE in this moment. Experience it FULLY. Yes.
But also use this time wisely to chase your life’s goals. If you goal is to lose weight…. go for it! If you aspire to write a book and launch a business … do it. Millionaires are made in times like this.
There is always a silver lining in the rain clouds. Sure, I miss chugging brews at my favorite bar or lounging on some of the ATL’s best sofas in the clubs. But I am definitely enjoying the time of asking my family what their dreams are… and remembering mine.
Let’s change the paradigm of this. Let’s be smart about visualizing what is happening around us politically, socioeconomically, and medically. Let’s BE… Be smart… Be inspired. Be motivated. Be bold. Be innovators… Be appreciative. Be thankful. Be caretakers of what we have. Be leaders. Be givers. Be investors in others. Be survivors.
BE the best of what makes Black Atlanta, well.. um… the epitome of the best in Black Atlanta.