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"Pandemic Personality." Let me start by claiming there is no scientific data about this term but rather, it was born from a conversation I had with my good friend Lisa Landry Smaldone. A few days ago, I asked Lisa how her kids were coping. She told me one of her daughters hasn’t been stressed at all, in fact, she has slowed down.

Lisa described her daughter as having the “perfect pandemic personality.”

My daughter, who is always on the go, very social and active has told me she feels calmer then ever because she is not experiencing FOMO (Fear of Missing Out). She told me that all her peers, friends, and coworkers are in the same storm. In other words, she feels she can live in the moment instead of feeling constant, nagging pressure to be doing things, attending events, and/or hanging out with friends.

I’m also fully aware of kids who have said “forget it” to social distancing. Some young people have decided they want/need to see friends, be busy with their extracurricular activities and hobbies, find a job, go back to their college campus, or live with friends due to challenges at home.

As I was strolling through my Facebook news feed, I came across a meme about “Coronacoaster.” Have you heard about this? It is the ups and downs of this pandemic.

One day you’re loving your bubble, feeling safe sheltering at home, going for walks, baking banana bread, and spending time outside perhaps gardening or sitting on your front step. The next day you’re crying, emotionally dis-regulated, having extreme cravings, missing family, friends, even complete strangers that you would say hello to at the store.

This got me thinking about where I fit. I’m pretty sure I’m on the coaster, on a ride I didn’t sign up for or purchase a ticket to take.

So now I’m curious. Now I want to learn more about humanity. How would you describe your Pandemic Personality and how about your kids?

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One of my goals each day is to gain insight into a human emotion. Perhaps this sounds weird to you, but to me, it is very helpful to better my understanding of humanity and learn what motivates people to keep on keeping on?

Today’s post is about HOPE. Yesterday, I received an email from a favorite business closing its doors until March of 2021. I was shocked, yelled “no way,” felt a whole lot of emptiness, and could feel my entire insides tighten up in real time. The email expressed their profound sadness surrounding this closure and their intense grief felt for employees, patrons, surrounding businesses/community, uncertainties and unknowns.

Towards the bottom of this heartfelt, gut-wrenching notice, words outlined the company’s commitment to live with hope despite pain. Their carefully written message shifted its focus from sorrow and grief to holding onto glimmers of hope. It encouraged customers to work extra hard at communicating positive words on social media, offer positive deeds in the community, and support one another through random acts of kindness. We all know positivity will not save businesses from closing but for them, this is their ask during their time of temporarily closing their doors. The email ended by announcing their commitment to recover, adapt, grow, and emerge in new ways.

I realize this is not a happy time in history. I recognize we are in the same storm but we are not in the same boat. For many, it’s been life altering.

So my question to you today is what motivates you to keep going? What are your small or big, irrational and/or rational glimmers of HOPE?

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