As promised from last week, the rest of the story. My complete five steps to building snowmen (insert KBJ column)

My two dogs take completely different walks.

Captain Jack, while quite the rapscallion inside the house, is a model walker. He’s got energy, he stays pretty focused, and he genuinely seems to enjoy the experience. He also really doesn’t care about other dogs, cats, or people on the trip.

Bella, while more tranquil in the house, becomes a good walk spoiled for me. She must think she owns the neighborhood. All cats, dogs, and other humans beware the wrath pf the diva. I purposely try to take her at times when we see less life in the streets, and I take her first because I want to end my walk on a positive note. While Bella is always eager to take a tour of the neighborhood, she definitely fits the definition of that good walk spoiled. 

This year of 2020 might feel to some like a good walk spoiled. 2019 just cruised along and we transitioned into a new Roaring 20s (read my January column). Now we stand to spend most to all of the year under the shadow of a deadly global pandemic that threatens lives and business fortunes. The tempest might be considered the equivalent of a wasted year.

While it’s easy at points to slip into that mindset, let’s take another look at how to make this a walk never to forget in a different way.

We’ve all been forced to become more creative and innovative. We’ve found ways to build and strengthen personal relationships. And we’ve discovered that we can be stronger and more resilient than ever, leading to a better version of us if we just allow it.

This past weekend, my family was supposed to have been enjoying the Walla Walla wine scene in tribute to my daughter Kelli’s 30th birthday. A weekend spent sipping wine, seeing the sites, and enjoying the company of family and friends. I even had a little hope of slipping over to Wine Valley Golf Course to play a round with my son-in-law! All that became impossible less than two months ago. So Barb and I improvised based on her idea. Kelli came over to spend the weekend with us to celebrate, and to her surprise we became Walla Walla West. We purchased some great Walla Walla wines; Barb prepared a charcuterie board, and Kelli experienced a party that she won’t ever forget. While we eventually will work our way back to Walla Walla, Barb’s great idea became a great “walk.” 

I’ve observed many businesses creating virtual experiences for their clients and customers. If you’re like me, you’ve spent more time nourishing relationships and creating new ones, that you never had time before to do. And as hard as this has been on our regular routines and businesses, we’ve persevered.

As I wrote last week on building snowmen, it all starts with mindset. In Washington State, there is now a 4-phased approach with timelines around the recovery phase. Regardless of personal points of view on it, we now have rules of engagement. To that point, we have the opportunity to build those walks we’ve had to take into new and exciting opportunities. We can view those rules as the next pathway; the next chance to plan relationships and strategies; and to what new adventures lay beyond.

As I write this, the sun is streaming through my office window. I can still hear Kelli and Barb talking upstairs. And I know that the dogs will at some point need to take that next walk. While Captain Jack’s may be more peaceful, I’m going to still enjoy being dragged around by Bella because at some point in the distant future, I won’t have that opportunity with her again, so I’d better enjoy it now. 

We all won’t get these days back again, so instead of licking our wounds and feeling sorry for a spoiled walk, perhaps it’s time to find that inner ninja and enjoy what we are doing and with whom we invest time with because we won’t be walking this way again.

Quote of the Week:

“Age is not important unless you’re a cheese.”

~ Helen Hayes (20th century American actress)

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