In 2010, I created a series of blogs, keynotes and training programs called “The New Normal.” Over time, these programs became known as “Living the New Normal” because we were adapting to the results of a significant financial recession, the housing meltdown, industries collapsing and massive job layoffs. In addition, the new world of social media was becoming mainstream. Now, FaceBook, Linked In, Twitter and Instagram are woven into everyday aspects of life and business.
We now have a “Twitterer in Chief,” Mark Zuckerberg has catapulted FaceBook to over 2 billion active users and Jeff Bezos of Amazon just surpassed Warren Buffett, Zuckerberg and Bill Gates as the richest man in the world. We have driverless cars and Richard Branson is going to the moon.
While I’m all for science and technology innovations, it’s the upheaval of social norms that I find to be anything but normal. In fact, I find the acceptance of the communication and leadership styles of our elected officials to be disturbing and upsetting.
This is not normal.
I don’t want to live in a country where our elected officials repeatedly lie, or as some say: “use alternative facts.” Or people who ridicule when someone disagrees. I don’t want leaders who bully, shun, threaten, publicly humiliate or use vulgar language.
If any CEO, business owner or manager behaved in this way, employees would be outraged. If a teacher or principal encouraged or tolerated this behavior in schools, parents would be outraged. If a member of the clergy behaved this way, we would be outraged.
Why are we not outraged?
While our elected officials are supposed to represent us, I cannot and will not believe that this kind of behavior represents us.
How to navigate the new reality
So how do we navigate this new reality? Let’s start taking ownership and accountability for our thoughts, words and actions before we jump in B.E.D. : Blame or Excuses or Denial. Let’s “propose versus oppose.” That means offering alternatives and options rather than just opposing what another person says or wants.
Many of you have heard me talk about focusing on what we want, not what we don’t want.
So here goes.
Here’s what I want:
- I want collaboration.
- I want civility.
- I want people to look out for the good of the whole, not just themselves.
- I want people to take care of and protect our planet.
- I want our communities to be safe and healthy.
- I want young people and old people and everyone in between to have equal opportunities.
- I want LGBTQ people to have the same opportunities as everyone else.
- I want all people, of any color, to have the same opportunities as anyone else.
- I want all of us to pay our fair share in taxes.
- I want us to treat each other with respect, even if we disagree.
I want this to be the new normal.
What do you want?
I invite you to take time to be clear about what you want. Who do you want in your life? What kind of relationships do you want? How do you want to communicate with others and how do you want them to communicate with you? Do the “leaders” in your life lead and communicate in ways that are aligned with what you want? Your children’s teachers, your clergy, your boss? Your elected officials? Do they communicate and lead with honor and respect for the privilege of their positions?
And if you are a leader in your work or community, do you respect the privilege and responsibility that come with being in a leadership role?
I would welcome hearing what you want. (Not what you don’t want.)
If you’re not sure, start by writing what you don’t want and then see what the opposite of that is…
I believe that if we collectively start focusing on the kind of world we want to live in, we can shift the narrative. We can shift the collective conversation to be more empowering, more constructive, more collaborative.
Who’s with me on this?
Be the Change.
Marty Stanley, CSP, is committed to creating healthier, more collaborative, empowering communities…one person at a time… one organization at a time. Marty’s coaching, training and team facilitation empowers people with knowledge, skills, tools and resources, so it can be re-generating. That means people are practicing it and paying it forward. Then there is momentum and it becomes sustainable. Contact Marty today to speak to your leadership and employee teams or next corporate or association event. 858-432-6764 816-695-5453 firstname.lastname@example.org www.alteringoutcomes.com
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Every time I read your “Thoughts from the Elliptical” I find a new nugget of inspiration.
I will think about additional positive statements to add to your list of “I want.” I have already adopted your list because it is so good.
I am going to share your article with family, friends and associates. It may help them to write their Senators and Congressmen to work across the aisle on legislation to move health care, tax issues and infrastructure forward. What a mess our current leadership is!
Thank you for putting into words what I want my “normal” to be.
You’re the best!