What Have We Learned?

I’m going to preface this post by saying if you are distressed by the events of the last several days, skip reading this. But if you want to see if there’s anything too good to glean from things going south, perhaps this will help.

I remember well the sense of despair that covered me the day after the 2016 election. I hoped that Trump’s campaign rhetoric was nothing more than just that. And that within the walls of the White House, decency, commitment to country, and the gravity of the presidency would prevail.

Well, we know how the story turned out. But in reflecting over the last four years, we’ve certainly learned many things. This list, by no means comprehensive, shows us that there is something positive we can draw from rough moments (or years).

  1. You can choose to see the good in people or convince yourself everything is bad. One option will keep you sane, the other will give you digestive problems.
  2. Some days you might have to force yourself to believe the sun will shine. Do it.
  3. Memes making fun of nutty presidents are good.
  4. Look to your late-night comedians (Jimmy, Jimmy, Trevor, and Steve) to find something to giggle about.
  5. Those late-night comedians will help you feel less alone.
  6. Focus on the people that matter. They aren’t going anywhere.
  7. Become an activist for people without much voice. There is strength to be found in that.
  8. Kindness, integrity, and honesty are by far, makes you look a lot better than cussing out irritating people (even if you really, really want to).
  9. Obama’ing yourself is a good plan of action: when they go low, you go high.
  10. Don’t get complacent. Always look for the next bit of work that needs to be done; prepare for it, roll up your sleeves, and dive in.
  11. Don’t lose your sense of humor.
  12. If things don’t go your way, don’t blame God. You need Him.
  13. Doing things for others will make you feel better.
  14. Don’t complain if you aren’t willing to get involved to solve a problem.
  15. Look back throughout history: what happened to Mussolini, Hitler, Pol Pot, Idi Amin, etc.? The people rise, help comes, the sun shines again.
  16. We are stronger than we think.
  17. Good can and will prevail. Even if it takes a long time.
  18. No one can take your faith from you.
  19. There is more good in the world than bad. The bad just gets more coverage.
  20. Life always moves forward.

What else would you add to this list?

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