In this episode, Patrick Veroneau tackles the things that people are facing during the Coronavirus pandemic – the pandemic itself, the racial and social unrest, the financial crisis that most people are going through, and the countless growth opportunities that come along with it. He dives into the roles and responsibilities that each person has in order to get out of the situation. He also provides a new vantage point on how you can look at the pandemic and use it to reconnect with yourself and rethink your future and your goals.
Listen to the podcast here:
A Pandemic, Racial Unrest And A Financial Crisis: Our 3 Greatest Growth Opportunities
This episode is one that I’ve wanted to do for quite some time. It’ll piggyback off of an article that I wrote around these three things. It’s in relation to three crises that we’re all dealing with right now on different levels. Probably, no one reading this blog has experienced all three of these things in their lifetime and here we are, experiencing all three within the same calendar year. As difficult as these are, I believe they provide us the greatest opportunity for where we want to go next. One is the pandemic. One is the racial and social unrest that we’re experiencing. The other is the financial crisis that we’re experiencing as a result of the pandemic. I’ll start with the racial unrest. I would like to call it not only racial unrest but social unrest.
Racial And Social Unrest
If we look at where we are now as a country, people are underwhelmed. I believe that the pandemic has a great deal to deal with some of the behaviors that are exhibited on the level that they have because we know what isolation and stress do to us in terms of how we behave if it’s not managed. When we look at both racial and social unrest, especially racial unrest, racism has been a problem in this country since its inception. Globally, racism is something that we’ve had to deal with. What is going on in the US provides us an important opportunity to try and get this right, but that’s not going to happen without understanding a couple of things. One is this is all based on our behaviors. Secondly, it’s taking a deeper dive into looking at our unconscious biases because that is where this lies. We spend so much time judging other people without understanding who they are, where they came from, and what they’ve experienced. We miss the opportunity to look at somebody in a more favorable light.
That’s why they call them unconscious biases. They’re not conscious and not recognized most of the time, they’re unconscious. One of the ones that I see being elevated most right now is confirmation bias. Everybody thinks they are right. When we think we’re right as it relates to confirmation bias, what we do is we discount all the other evidence that suggests that maybe we’re not 100% right or there is another story here that can be told, another solution, or another reason for what’s going on and we refuse to look at it unless we are able to do that, we are doomed to the struggle that we’re continuing to see right now. We can’t overcome the challenges that we’re facing if we’re aggressive on each other rather than being aggressive on the problems. There’s a whole host of behaviors and things that we can work on there but listening certainly is one of them.People are getting all wrapped up, concerned, scared, and living in stress that they're behaving in a counterproductive way. Click To Tweet
The model that I use is cables addresses all of these things in terms of congruence. Walking the talk, listening, and being empathetic about how important those things are. Unless we’re able to do that, our challenges around racial unrest and social unrest will not be resolved. It’s all about our behaviors. The best way to find out my personal role in this is to look at what I call the most important leadership tool that we have. We are talking about leadership here, and we all have the ability to lead on this. We’re talking about the mirror. We all need to take a good, hard look at ourselves in the mirror and say, “What role am I playing in the dysfunction that’s being experienced right now throughout our country in my community?” I guarantee you, we all play a role in this. Until we do that, we’re not going to be able to overcome this.
Next, we talk about the pandemic. We are so worried about this virus and catching this virus. When I look at this, we know the stress and anxiety that it causes when we live in the space of fear and what that does to our immune system. People are getting all wrapped up, concerned, scared, and living in stress that they’re behaving in a way that is counterproductive to what they’re hoping they’re going to avoid. They’re reducing their immune system through their worry, arguing, and poor choices that we’ve made to take better care of ourselves. We live in a time where obesity is rampant in this country. One piece of research says one of the vaccines coming out doesn’t seem to be as effective in people that are obese.
For obesity, we all have control over our lifestyle. If we want to protect ourselves against a virus, we should treat our bodies the best way we can so that we don’t compromise what our body can do on its own. That protects us from viruses and bacteria. I’m not saying that’s the only thing that we can do here but let’s control what we can control. Suppose we did a better job of looking at what lifestyle choices we’re making. How can we contribute to making better lifestyle changes, so we give ourselves the best opportunity to overcome the viruses, bacteria, and different illnesses that are going to come about through our ability to deal with these things in stress, making better choices in terms of how we modify our diet, and our exercise? Those are in our control.
This could be a great opportunity for people to look back and say, “Remember when that happened? I realized how important it was for me to regain my health physically, mentally, spiritually, and emotionally. By doing that, it put me in a much better place.” We have that opportunity. Lastly, when we talk about the financial crisis that we’re in right now, we’re seeing record levels of unemployment. I look at this from a couple of different aspects. One is it can be the catalyst for a lot of people who are unhappy in whatever roles they’re playing to say, “What do I want to do? What kind of job do I want? What kind of lifestyle do I want to live?” We have that opportunity right now but also, part of that financial is to say, “How am I spending my money now? What things am I doing to save? What foolish things am I buying to impress other people that are causing me to be in a place where when there’s an emergency, I can’t deal with it because I built no nest egg? There’s nothing there.”We all play a role in this pandemic, and when we understand that, it provides us the opportunity to get out of it. Click To Tweet
I realized that some people are going to say, “I work day and night just to make ends meet.” That’s where I go back to asking yourself, what do you want for yourself, career, or something else that’s going to provide you with that level of security that you need financially? Take a hard look at what that might be. This is an opportunity again, to say, “How do I want to make this different?” Not to blame somebody else, the government, our politicians, somebody in my community, and a virus, whatever it might be. We have the ability to pull out that mirror and look at ourselves. How have my behaviors impacted my financial security?
How have my behaviors impacted my ability to be healthy by the choices that I made? How have my behaviors led or contributed to the social unrest that we see now? We all play a role in this. When we understand that, it provides us the opportunity to get out of it. If we look at these things as opportunities as opposed to problems that can’t be solved, we will all be stronger because of this. Believe me, this has not been thoroughly enjoyable for me either. I’ve made changes based on what I was doing because of this situation. When I look back on it, I know that those were things that I should have been doing in the first place and it provided this opportunity.
We all have the ability to make choices that will benefit us in each of these areas financially, our own health as it relates to the pandemic, and our own behaviors as it relates to the social unrest that we’re on right now. We control these things. If we model positive examples for ourselves, we provide an opportunity for other people to do the same thing. I realized, this has been a rant. It’s something important right now. We have so much opportunity and this isn’t going to be solved by blaming other people or digging our feet in and saying, “I’m right. You’re stupid, you’re selfish.” Whatever it might be, we need each other. That’s the only way we’re getting through this. I hope you find an opportunity here to pull out your mirror, take a look at yourself, and what you can do because we all have the ability to rise above our bests in these situations. I hope you’ll go out there and do it. Peace.