Not all change is for the better. But how we respond, in deed and attitude, matters.

February 16, 2021

Welcome to week #30 of The AD Way!

What got us here is not the same as what will get us to the next level. Get outside your comfort zone, rather than stubbornly hanging on to old ways of doing things. Be excited by the possibilities that change and growth bring. Be flexible. Get to know the “new” people. When a decision has been made, get behind it and do everything you can to support it.

Upon rereading this week’s fundamental today, I find certain aspects of it lacking in sensitivity for our present time.

Surely, we should acknowledge in times like these, that not all change is good or for the better. Some come from painful losses we experience. Take the disruption, isolation, sickness, and premature deaths we are living through during this global pandemic. Those, we’d be better off without. And they are rightly responded to with anger, regret, resistance, and grief.

And yet.

At some point, no matter how deep the hurt, no matter how painful the loss, after an appropriate period of mourning and introspection, we need to pick ourselves up and soldier on.

This is the wise and proper choice.

Life is for the living. We must live it to the best of our ability. This takes courage, faith, strength, and wisdom. And yes, it also takes “aligning” with the reality of our current circumstance, no matter how challenging.

Resilience. That is the word we’ve used to describe how our members, suppliers, and AD itself, successfully navigated 2020. In truth, what made this possible, despite our pain, losses, and grief, was our collective ability to align our people, processes and strategies with the pandemic driven changes that were forced upon us and solider on. That was and is remarkable, impressive. My heart is filled with gratitude.

And so, a word if I may, about attitude.

Our attitude is a function of our perspective. Let me give you an example.

In Florida we get hurricanes. When bad ones come our way, we issue evacuation orders. Most people wisely choose to leave, taking the long, slow drive up the interstate. But some, in spite of these orders, choose, for one reason or another, to stay and ride them out. They hunker down, huddle in their homes and brace for the worst.

Hurricanes, even “mild” ones, leave a ton of destruction in their wake. But the perspective on this devastation is very different for those who leave and those who stay. The hearts of those who stay and survive are filled with gratitude when their homes remain standing and they make it through alive. But those who leave see only the destruction when they return and feel only the loss.

I am not advocating the riding out of hurricanes. But it is only by weathering the great storms of life that one gains strength and perspective.

Together, we are making it through this very difficult time. We have losses to rightly grieve. Let us grieve those together. But let us also continue to align with change, grow in strength and solider on. And may our hearts be filled with gratitude for the opportunity to do so.