Approaching the holidays, and with Thanksgiving around the corner it is a great time to stop and reflect about the year. One great way to conclude any stage in our lives is to reflect on what occurred in a constructive way. This year has been a difficult one to say the least. It has changed the way many people live their lives. Then, there is the sobering truth about how much suffering has been inflicted on many by the Covid-19 pandemic. Fortunately, there appears to be a light at the end of the tunnel. Vaccines look promising and are giving the world much needed hope of a return to normal.
One would be remiss not to note the good things that have also happened this year. Globally, and regionally there have been reasons to celebrate, but ultimately this is a very personal part of reflection. No one can point out the good things about your year to you. Everybody has their own take on what they experience, and reflection done from your own perspective will yield more insight. The important thing is to include reflection as a part of the experience to mature as an individual and bring a better perspective to the following year.
It is a little surprising to be in a country with so much diversity, in a year where there is so much innovation, under circumstances so dire, and yet observe pettiness. Considering the ingenuity and competence people have exhibited in multiple ways it stands to reason that open-minded behavior in our interactions with one another is well within our capacity. We are all unique in some way, but there is so much that we share; enough for us to be able to understand each other on some level, and yet there is much bickering and refusal to communicate in a meaningful way.
It is not difficult to work together, people do it all the time. Accomplishing goals and tasks together also shows that differences can be irrelevant. However, currently there are some topics that seem to be too emotionally charged to even debate. Some would argue that the debate needs to be toned down, and others would argue that it needs to be turned up. That is just one of the myriad of ways in which there is disagreement, but is a good example of the division coexisting with a great need for togetherness.
America is a free country, that is the strength on which the current conditions were built. People do not have to agree with you, but they do have to respect your rights. In turn, you do not have to agree with them, but you have to respect their rights as well. It is a simple yet infinitely complicated concept to reflect upon. Looking within ourselves and examining what role we play in all of this, and doing that at various stages in our lives can improve our ability to work with one another.
Have a Happy Thanksgiving and Holiday Season!