“Bear with me… Just give me a sec… Ummm… OK… I think… Here we go…”
As I was walking through my house the other day, this is the conversation I heard coming from my fourteen-year-old son’s Zoom class. His teacher was working hard to share a piece of learning content, and wrestling with the technology to make it visible to her online class. A little bit of panic in her voice, a little frustration, and slight bit of hilarity.
It mirrors so many experiences I’ve had over the last months, where we’ve been using Zoom and other platforms to stay connected. It’s happened during virtual conferences, live webinars, and client meetings. Some of the most professional people I know have had their legs swiped out from under them by this technology. Over and over again, challenges have popped up unexpectedly – and every time, we’ve worked through them together.
Here’s the reality: We’re trying hard to adopt new tech, adapt to these changing times, and connect in brand new ways. No one was prepared for this. And sometimes… it’s freakin’ messy.
In the middle of this pandemic, though, there’s something else happening that is amazing. Our humanity is coming forward, and our interactions are more genuine and authentic than they’ve been in a long time. Social media had cleaned up and hidden all our imperfections. Only our very best of anything was getting through the filter to be shared – our best vacations, most perfect family gatherings, and sparkly moments with friends. We didn’t share the mess. Never share the mess… it’s far too dangerous.
Then came COVID, and things got real.
All of a sudden, we were exposed. People Zoom’d from their kitchens, their bedrooms, and their living rooms. Dogs barked, and kids screamed. People tried to share their screens, and it didn’t work. So they tried again… sometimes it still didn’t work.
Amid all this chaos, we were forced to help one another and show each other a little grace. Empathy became our go to. “Been there…” became our mantra.
That, my friends, is a massive win.
Because of the last six months, I now know that you are all as imperfect as me. Your lives are messy, and you’re not as flawless as I once thought. With all our perfection dropped, we’ve had some of the deepest, most real conversations ever. You’re human, and so am I. You’re imperfect, and I can be too. Finally.
Thank you, COVID.
Today, show up ready with a little grace. When things don’t work, don’t worry. Roll with it, enjoy the ride, and help one another. Let each other know that we’re all good. Smile a little more, frown a little less, and look past the mess… cuz’ you know you have your own as well.
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