Re-emerge, re-surface, re-connect, re-launch, review, and re-invent. These words are synonymous and yet uniquely different. Whichever one works for you, I challenge you to embrace it. Moreover, apply it and enforce it.
We are living in an era where the prefix “re” can be applied everywhere and to everyone. Advertising, public relations, marketing, meetings and events have been brought closer together as we all collaborate and work on screens. From our desks, we have been able to successfully deliver powerful messages, create brand awareness, and offer community. And so with re-launches, re-discoveries, and revelations, there is an implied message of doing it over. But the question remains: are we doing things over again without offering much thought to the process, or are we taking steps towards a new sense of evolution?
I’d like to think of this time as an opportunity to “reinvent with passion.” Reinvention has become a responsibility for all of us because how you change and what you do ultimately affects me and, conversely, what I do affects you. This pandemic has only made us all more aware just how much our actions, however small, affect everyone in our circle and outside of it. We all breathe the same air; we all share the same energy. To move through this transition effectively, we need a new degree of creative and deliberate thinking.
Looking Backwards to Move Forward
Many protective walls have come down during this time of personal transparency as we redefine what is not acceptable anymore. The old ways are merely that – old. Like Alice in Wonderland, peering through the big or small door not knowing what to expect, we are challenged to think with our brains, our courage, and our hearts. Why? Because our world starts with us and everyone one in it; we have the ability to influence and inspire everyday, so we need to feel the weight of that responsibility.
So, how do we harness the fortitude, resilience, and patience that we have learned through this time? We start by welcoming the notion that we have a choice in where to direct our energy and where we are going, and finally, where we belong.
Lessons Learned from Days Past
The Hindus have a theory describing man’s progression that’s based on 2000 year cycles and is symbolized by the four legs of a table. The first leg represents 500 years of kings and power, man against man. The second is the age of accumulation and materialism. The third is confusion, and fourth is the Golden Age. I’m learning more and more how profoundly accurate this cycle may be.
Think about the shifts throughout the different ages in history such as the Age of Discovery and Exploration from the 1400s to the 1600s. Seafarers, astronomers, and sailors of all kinds traveled to uncharted territory every day using the tools that were becoming increasingly available. Nowadays, the tools of discovery we hold in our hands are Macs or PCs. They’re powered by a variety of search engines helping us make more discoveries everyday – down to every nanosecond.
Regardless of which age in history, the concepts are the same: the thought preceded the trajectory. It doesn’t strike me as coincidence that the Apollo landing on the moon happened in 1969 and the song “The Age of Aquarius” came out the year prior. It truly was the dawning of a new age – and an age of confusion – and with each new exposure, discoveries were made, and growth and development emerged.
No doubt that navigating through uncharted seas or uncharted space had its challenges: fear, doubt, loneliness, and always attempting to maintain a sense of endurance to persevere during the darkest days. But what’s extraordinary is that the individuals making it happen forged ahead. Fueled by vision, hope, and the indelible human spirit, discoveries were made that stand the test of time. We can all learn how that vision created a reality much bigger than the human beings themselves.
The Future and The Change That’s Needed
Embracing the cycle of life, where we fit in, and how much progress we are making are all part of our development into the next generation. Each cycle offers a paradigm shift that awakens something new within us. There was much loss, both personal and professional. But there were also new beginnings, new babies born, new companies founded and created, and new needs defined. Loss is a part of renewal and growth. It’s as important as the journey itself.
The future is what we choose to make it and how we choose to plan for it begins now. We have to get back to the future and feed into tomorrow’s assets. The meetings and events industry is akin to the stock market and real estate businesses – it goes up and down. Although our stages are now virtual platforms, we will soon be back to distinctly designed hotel environments that support live interaction. People need to meet with other people because we matter to each other to move forward.
In alignment with that, there’s a concept called the “science of regenerativity” that states that whenever you do something routine just a little bit differently, it becomes something new. It is, in a sense, related to the tipping point where change subtly accumulates until it becomes profoundly noticeable. All businesses, associations, and universities have an opportunity to re-group and re-define themselves now. Some will be lost in the process but a “new” will be formed to meet the new needs that are being developed.
Now is the time to challenge yourself and revitalize the new you by reinventing your own passion and embracing the changes. Create them through regenerativity. Is it loss that is holding you back or do you feel lost? I learned in yoga that “chaos and confusion is a bridge between where you were and where you’re going.” It is hard to walk across a bridge and look down into a dark abyss and trust you are headed in the right direction.
But you are. We all are.
What Part Will You Choose?
We are redefining our roles in business. We are communicating more with people outside of our traditional circles, seeing a renewed strength in humanity’s collaboration. We are lifting up and celebrating the voices of those that have been silenced for too long. And we are making sure to be seen and heard in exactly the ways we choose to be. We all have a role to play.
In order to reinvent ourselves we must reinvest in ourselves. Consider each of the five layers of personal development and communication: physical, emotional, intellectual, spiritual, and completion. It is a constant investment in development to take care of each of these because all of these work in harmony with the other four.
Choose to be a part of humanity’s evolution and look inside at what part you can play. One thing to be involved with could make the difference of feeling lost to feeling needed. You are needed. We are all needed.
Although we may not understand it, as it doesn’t always make sense, thank what was lost and the experience it gave you, recognize your losses, what lessons they taught, and look ahead into the great unknown. Choose to embrace it with passion.