The look on people’s faces is asking the same thing: How could this happen so rapidly? In just a few weeks, we have gone from being advised to wash our hands properly — which, frankly, is something that we should always be doing regardless — to being ordered to stay in our homes for all but the most vital activities, like buying essential groceries or going to the drug store. True, our nation has faced larger catastrophes before. But we have never experienced so much remarkable change in such a small period of time. This isn’t merely dizzying. It’s staggering.
However, despite this challenge, I have every confidence — and you should, too — that as a nation we will triumph over this crisis. How can I be so sure? It’s because of three things that are embedded into the fabric of our identity: bravery, achievement, and resiliency.
Since the beginning, when our nation has been called upon we have consistently risen to the occasion and done what is right. We are seeing numerous examples of this bravery across the country right now, through the heroic efforts of our emergency service personnel and first responders, health care workers, members of our Armed Forces, and the millions of courageous people who provide essential services.
We should also be emboldened by the bravery and leadership that we are seeing from our business community. Small businesses and large enterprises are banding together to cooperate and be part of the solution in truly unprecedented ways. I am proud and honored to be part of this community. We are in this together and there is nothing we cannot do.
We are also seeing the care and community spirit demonstrated by ordinary people who are checking up on their neighbors, creating homemade masks and donating them to groups and individuals, offering to pick up groceries and other essential supplies for those who in self-quarantine or mandated isolation, and the list goes on. This bravery and service remind me of the words of President Franklin D. Roosevelt: “Courage is not the absence of fear, but rather the assessment that something else is more important than fear.”
We are not just a nation of dreamers: we are also a nation of doers! It is just a matter of time before the best and brightest minds in our medical and scientific communities will develop safe and effective treatments and therapies. This will immediately help those who contract COVID-19 so they can recover at home vs. be hospitalized. And once a vaccine is created, we can prevent the virus from spreading and eventually eradicate it similar to SARS.
Plus, it is not just doctors and researchers who are leading the fight. A 43-year old mother of two named Jennifer Haller volunteered to be the first person to receive an experimental vaccine to fight COVID-19. How “experimental” are we talking here? Consider this: before taking the vaccine, she had to sign a 40+ page disclaimer acknowledging the risks. Yet despite this, she forged ahead. Here is what she had to say: “I wanted to do something because there are so many millions of Americans that don’t have the same privileges that I’ve been given. They’re losing their jobs. They are concerned about paying bills, feeding their family. This was just something that I could do and that I wanted to do.”
I have always felt that we do not give ourselves ample credit for bouncing back after tough times. While other countries are typically worse off after a crisis, we are always stronger. We don’t just get up off the mat and get back in the ring. We dig deep and win by a knockout.
I have no doubt that our characteristic resiliency will come through yet again when we need it most. Does that mean that things will be the exact same in the future as they were in the past? No. Does it mean things will be better because we will have learned so much and drawn closer and more unified as a nation? Absolutely.
While there are some glimpses of light at the end of the tunnel, we all know that there going to be some tough weeks and months ahead that will put us to the test. But we will pass with flying colors because we are courageous, we are achievers, and we are resilient. When these signature traits combine, it is a foregone conclusion that we will not just overcome this crisis. We will triumph!
About the Author:
Born and raised in the Piedmont Triad and very passionate about the growth of the business community, state, and small businesses, Nicky Smith is a leader in the community, volunteers for a number of organizations including his Christ United Methodist Church. Member of the Crescent Rotary Club, Nicky finds time to writes for the Triad Business Journal in addition to weekly blogs located at https://digitalphone.io/blog/
Nicky Smith, CEO/Founder
Carolina Digital Phone Inc
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