Do you believe in Santa Claus? The Easter Bunny? How about the Tooth Fairy?
I live in a house where we still believe in these mysterious figures. In fact, we were just visited by the Tooth Fairy last night. My little boy lost his second tooth and even though it was painful, all he could think about was how excited he was that the Tooth Fairy would come visit him in the night. Of course, with Christmas right around the corner, all the buzz in my house revolves around Santa Claus. We must plan what type of cookies to bake for Santa, should we give him white or chocolate milk, and “what do reindeer eat Mommy?” has been uttered more than once recently.
We also have our “Elf on the Shelf” visiting. This little creature arrives the morning after Thanksgiving. The children name their elf (ours is Eubie) and then each night while the children sleep, Eubie moves to a different location. In the morning, they have great fun running around trying to find where Eubie moved. The story with the elf says that Eubie watches their behavior during the day, then flies back to Santa each night to report in. That is why he moves each night.
So, when do we lose the wonder of childhood and become cynics?
I know the economy is not great. Got it. I know there are families dealing with layoffs. I’ve been there myself, so I understand. It is not easy. Think our profession needs an overhaul? Great, but don’t just give it lip service. This negative focus coming from the media is eating us alive. It needs to stop.
I want us to collectively regain some of the wonderment of childhood. How different would we be if when faced with an obstacle or problem, we immediately thought of the silver lining? Just based on the examples above, how different could our reactions look?
- Economy in a downturn- Do what you can to really cut back. So many of us could use a reality check so we can realize that we do not need all the “things and gadgets” we have. What is the positive here? Focus on spending time with family and friends instead of spending money. Find ways to teach your children valuable lessons in saving and frugality. It is holiday time and most of us are probably ready to go out and drop hundreds or even thousands of dollars on gifts, most of which are not needed. Why not rally your entire family to cut back spending on each other. Agree to adopt or help a needy family instead or agree to spend some of your holiday money on programs like Toys For Tots. Let’s focus on giving what IS valuable, our time, our attention, ourselves.
- Layoffs– 2009 has been a record year of unemployment. According to the Bureau of Labor Statistics, the 10.2% unemployment rate is the highest it has been since 1983. If you’re still employed, have you embraced the positive that you may have the skills or ability to help someone in this situation? No? Ok, here’s your start. Check out JobAngels and find out how you can help. Are you someone who has been laid off? One great way to network and keep up your skills is by reaching out to other people in your situation to help each other. If you have a HR background, offer to help review and revise the person’s resume. Depending on the other person’s background, they may be able to share some names of contacts from their network so that you can increase visibility of your job search.
- Profession needs an overhaul- GET INVOLVED. Fine to talk about it, but follow it up with action. Join in with other people to bring about learning opportunities. The best way to initiate change is with a positive attitude.
If you have any recommendations of how we can get involved, help others, and kick cynicism in the butt, add it in the comments.
*Special thanks to Paul Hebert for inspiring my post today.