Social Distance Creates Connection 
Like Never Before!

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At the end of every year, I start my annual planning process by reviewing the past year to make a list of accomplishments.  High Performers don't often celebrate accomplishments on a day-to-day or week-to-week basis.  They knock down barriers and move on to the next challenge.  I'm no exception. 

Best to begin a forward-looking planning process with Gratitude in your heart, wouldn't you say?

Wisdom 4 Humanity Challenge #1:  Make a List of Accomplishments for the Past Year

As a consultant for over 30 years, my annual list of accomplishments usually included hard-won successes on my clients' most strategic transformation projects.  That lifestyle included working with amazing teams and traveling to interesting and exotic places all over the world.   Turkey, South Africa, Peru, Dublin, Venezuela, Singapore, Paris, Dubai and Winnipeg.

Due to the pandemic, this year was very different.

As I looked to the normal places for accomplishments, I drew a blank.

  • No big consulting projects
  • No travel to sacred places for my annual Wisdom Council
  • No big family gatherings 

We had planned a big gathering for my 60th birthday.  Instead, we celebrated at home with 3 surprises:

  • A zoom call celebration with my Purdue counselor buddies.  Some of whom I hadn't seen in over 30 years!
  • A zoom call with my family – opening gifts on camera in front of my computer
  • Our neighborhood singing me Happy Birthday (socially distanced) in our front yard.  Complete with fireworks!

Reflecting on my 60th birthday celebration, I started to re-frame my list of accomplishments for this year.

In March, we started our pretty strict self-quarantine.  I'm considered high risk with my Cardiac Obtructive Pulmonary Disease (COPD).  I've walked into 3 commercial buildings since this whole thing started.

As a result, we've spent MUCH more time at home.  

  • Our yard is as beautiful as ever.  One day when we were walking in the backyard, I looked at the gardens and exclaimed, "this is our Pandemic Garden."
  • We finally cleaned out the garage and mopped the floor.  Geez, haven't done THAT in years!  
  • We cleared out a bunch of old furniture and old technology.  Anyone need a Tivo Premiere?  We made a big stack of stuff in our basement to sell or give away.  

I haven't spent this much time at home since….since…when I was 18 years old?  


We have MORE space in our home and we feel more connected in our home than ever before!

Early on in the Pandemic, my wife and I decided to cut way back on our television, netflix and amazon prime shows.  Instead, we began 'game night.'  We LOVE to play games and have a whole stack in the basement.  We brought some of them upstairs and laid them out on the table.  Almost every night, we pull out a different game and play.  We love Scrabble, Rumicube, Racko and an occasional game of Monopoly.  However, we LOVE Yahtzee.  There's nothing like the endorphine rush of rolling a yahtzee and scoring 50 points.  Big cheers and high fives!

And I've been on more Zoom, Teams, Go To Meeting and Webex calls than I can EVER remember.  I hear people say they are zoomified – like zombie-fied.  That's not my mindset at all!  This year I spent 442 hours on 1:1 calls with friends, colleagues, clients, prospects.  When EVER did I have the opportunity to have that much personal contact with people I love and cherish?  Some of whom I haven't spoken to in 40 years!  

NOTE:  Yes, 442 hours.  I have a spreadsheet and I keep track.

Yes, it's been a strange year.  My accomplishments are much more …. subtle.

Let's see

  • I've connected with my home like never before
  • I've connected with friends and colleagues from all over the world like never before
  • Most important, I'm connecting with my wife like never before

I'd say those are AMAZING accomplishments!


After reflecting on my accomplishments for the year, I draft a headline.  In my mind's eye, I imagine my great, great grandchildren reading though the headlines of my life.

My 2020 headline will read:  "Social Distance Creates Connection Like Never Before!"

So there's your Wisdom 4 Humanity Challenge #2:  Draft your 2020 Headline!

What new routines/new normal will YOU retain when the pandemic subsides?

For me, it's GAME NIGHT with my wife!


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